Michael Safi in Hambantota and Amantha Perera, in The Guardian, 26 March 2018, with this title “The biggest game changer in 100 years’: Chinese money gushes into Sri Lanka,” … with highlights being the imposition of The Editor, Thuppahi
Little disturbs the serenity of Guan Yin, the bodhisattva of compassion, as her statue sits in contemplation at the centre of Mattala Rajapaksa international airport. The last flight from the airport departed at 7.50am. The next is scheduled for 7.50am tomorrow. In the meantime, check-in counters are empty, car rental desks deserted, and the only sign of life a handful of staff laughing around an information desk who disperse when a visitor arrives.
Mattala Rakapaksa airport, built with Chinese loans, handles 50,000 passengers a year, a fraction of its capacity of 1 million. Photograph: Michael Safi
Filed under accountability, China and Chinese influences, disparagement, foreign policy, governance, growth pole, Indian Ocean politics, island economy, landscape wondrous, modernity & modernization, politIcal discourse, power politics, Rajapaksa regime, slanted reportage, sri lankan society, transport and communications, world events & processes
Leelananda De Silva, courtesy of Sunday Island, 24 March 2018, where the title runs “Are We Heading Towards Constitutional Anarchy? The Evolution of Constitutional Governance in Sri Lanka (Revised Second Edition)”
n the 1950s in Ceylon, there was the university entrance examination, conducted by the University of Ceylon annually, to select students for entry to that university. There were no G.C.E. A-Levels then. One of the subjects for this examination was called Government. Those who sat for this subject read the Constitution of Ceylon by Ivor Jennings. Jennings was the author of the Sri Lankan Constitution of 1948, and it was first hand analysis of the constitutional provisions of 1948. Jennings was one of the foremost constitutional lawyers in England and he had published the authoritative “Cabinet Government” some years before and also a more popular book called the British Constitution and another called The Law and the Constitution. Undergraduates of that time were fortunate in reading these authoritative tomes by a leading constitutional scholar. Since 1948, there has been little scholarly writings on constitutional developments in Ceylon, especially on the politics behind constitutional changes.
Filed under communal relations, constitutional amendments, economic processes, electoral structures, governance, historical interpretation, life stories, modernity & modernization, power sharing, sri lankan society, world events & processes
Regular readers of “The Island” newspaper over the twenty year period from the 1980’s will remember the almost weekly columns written by Dr. Mervyn D. De Silva, who was in those years a Deputy Director of the Ministry of Planning and Economic Affairs, followed by being appointed as the Director of the Ministry of Plan Implementation, and later becoming a Member of Parliament through the National List. His most profuse and provocative period was during the tenures of four Presidents from Mr. J. R. Jayawardene to Mrs. Chandrika Bandaranaike Kumaratunga. His writings covered a wide range of public and national concerns and took their cue from what the controversial American journalist I.F. Stone believed was the purpose of good journalism – “to comfort the afflicted and afflict the comfortable”.
Filed under accountability, charitable outreach, commoditification, education, governance, historical interpretation, Indian Ocean politics, island economy, land policies, Left politics, legal issues, life stories, modernity & modernization, sri lankan society, transport and communications, working class conditions, world affairs
Distinguished academic Dr Michael Roberts was in England recently and talked about his experiences and work including his online life as creator of the Thuppahi Blog (https://thuppahi.wordpress.com) …. This Q and A takes 60 minutes.
Pic by Eranga Jayawardena
Michael Roberts is a historian by training and has taught at the Department of History at Peradeniya University (1961-76) and the Department of Anthropology at Adelaide University (1977-2003). His major works are in agrarian history, social mobility, nationalism and ethnic conflict. Based on his interest in the Tamil liberation struggle and the sacrificial devotion mustered by the LTTE, he has written extensively on suicide missions. Michael Roberts has also edited several volumes on Sri Lanka entitled Collective Identities. In 2004, he retired as an Adjunct Assistant Professor at Adelaide University, but continues to write articles.
Filed under accountability, american imperialism, conspiracies, doctoring evidence, education, ethnicity, governance, historical interpretation, Indian Ocean politics, landscape wondrous, life stories, literary achievements, LTTE, modernity & modernization, nationalism, news fabrication, patriotism, politIcal discourse, power politics, prabhakaran, propaganda, Rajapaksa regime, security, self-reflexivity, Sinhala-Tamil Relations, sri lankan society, Tamil Tiger fighters, truth as casualty of war, UN reports, unusual people, vengeance, war reportage, world events & processes