Category Archives: press freedom & censorship

Confronting Gotabaya Rajapaksa in Q & A in 2018 – Swedish Journalist Mikaelsson

Johan Mikaelsson, in Journalists for Democracy in Sri Lanka, 5 November 2018, where the title is Impunity Island: Sri Lanka’s “predator emeritus” on rebound,”

Many local journalists feel discomfort when they hear the name Gotabaya Rajapaksa[1]. He is seen as a ruthless person, who was behind the murder wave that took the lives of their colleagues. They see it as unthinkable to contact him and ask critical questions. The few foreign journalists who tried to put some pressure on him when he held his powerful position 2005–2015 were met with anger. After 2015, Gotabaya Rajapaksa has been almost invisible in international media.

 

‘Gota’, the nick-name under which he is usually known, is now often surrounded by a glow, a shimmering luster. Many want to see more of ‘Gota’, they regard him as a wonder maker. Most editors avoid challenging him. A few journalists in the domestic English-language press have asked difficult questions, but ‘Gota’ appears to be ready to move on, possibly as a candidate in the presidential election in 2020.

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Filed under accountability, atrocities, governance, historical interpretation, human rights, Indian Ocean politics, landscape wondrous, law of armed conflict, legal issues, LTTE, performance, politIcal discourse, power politics, press freedom & censorship, Rajapaksa regime, reconciliation, security, self-reflexivity, Sinhala-Tamil Relations, sri lankan society, Tamil civilians, terrorism, truth as casualty of war, unusual people, war crimes, war reportage, world events & processes

Apey Ayithivaasikam: Guarding Sri Lanka’s Right?

Sri Lanka Guardian ….

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Filed under Indian Ocean politics, landscape wondrous, life stories, political demonstrations, politIcal discourse, power politics, Presidential elections, press freedom & censorship, security, self-reflexivity, Sinhala-Tamil Relations, sri lankan society, truth as casualty of war, world events & processes

Secularism on the Wane in South Asia

P K Balachandran, in Financial Times, 27 October 2018 -where the title reads “Decline of Secularism in South Asia”

South Asia’s multi-religious countries, namely India, Pakistan, Bangladesh and Sri Lanka, started off with a noble wish to be ‘secular’ and keep religion out of the business of the State. Hindu-majority India, under the leadership of the avowedly secular Jawaharlal Nehru, explicitly stated that it would be secular.

Nehru

Jinnah–Getty Images DS Senanaayke

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Filed under authoritarian regimes, Buddhism, economic processes, governance, heritage, historical interpretation, Indian Ocean politics, Indian religions, Islamic fundamentalism, modernity & modernization, parliamentary elections, politIcal discourse, power politics, press freedom & censorship, religiosity, self-reflexivity, Sinhala-Tamil Relations, world events & processes, zealotry

Land Acquisition Processes in Sri Lanka, 1948-2018

Gerald H. Peiris, being  an article serialized recently in The Island, under the following heading  “Alleged ‘Land Grabbing’ by the Security Forces in Sri Lanka” … with highlighting emphasis being impositions by The Editor, Thuppahi

In view of the significance accorded in recent public debate and discussion on the subject of ‘land grabbing’ in several conflict-ridden countries of the Third World it is necessary to devote attention to a series of facts that are of crucial relevance to a balanced understanding of the related situation in Sri Lanka.

Figure 1 – post-conflict releases of land from the Palali HSZ

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Mark Knight’s Retaliation by Cartoon: Touche!

Mark_Knight SW cartoon 16-9-2018 HERALD SUN

THOSE who stew and fume in this world as fervent feminist victims –or victims tout court — are asked to look at themselves …. as incisively as the good cartoonist does.

AA SERENA FINGER

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Filed under accountability, art & allure bewitching, performance, politIcal discourse, press freedom & censorship, self-reflexivity, terrorism, the imaginary and the real, unusual people, violence of language, world events & processes, zealotry

Repression of Uighurs in China: Why Islamic States are Silent

Alexandra Ma, in UK Business Insider, 17 August 2018, where  the title runs Why the Muslim world isn’t saying anything about China’s repression and ‘cultural cleansing’ of its downtrodden Muslim minority”

China’s crackdown on its Uighur citizens, a mostly-Muslim ethnic minority group, has faced heavy international scrutiny in recent months. In August the United Nations said it was “deeply concerned” by reports that China had forced as many as 1 million Uighurs into internment camps in Xinjiang, western China. In April, the US State Department said it had heard of Uighurs who had “disappeared” or were unexpectedly detained.

Meanwhile, Muslim countries have been deafeningly silent.

 Map showing the projects subsumed under the Belt and Road Initiative as of December 2015. Reuters

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Terrorsim in Britain has been Blunted and Contained

THE SPECTATOR, Editorial, 18 August 2018, with title Terrorism isn’t ‘losing’. It has already lost”

By now, the routine is familiar: a lone wolf strikes, roads are sealed off, buildings locked down and a biographical picture begins to emerge. Often, the perpetrator turns out to be born and bred in Britain. His astonished friends and neighbours say they saw no signs that he had succumbed to fanaticism. It later emerges that radicalisation happened incredibly quickly — perhaps inspired by online videos — and the terror plan was so low-tech that interception would have been impossible. How, it might be asked, can any country protect itself against such threats?

Pic from Getty

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