Category Archives: the imaginary and the real

Addressing the Issues of the Dr Shafi Shahabdeen Case

Malinda Seneviratne, in Daily Mirror, 4 July 2019, where the title runs  “Dr Shafi Sahabdeen and the proportionality of communalism”

I want Dr. Seigu Shihabdeen Mohamed Shafi cleared of all charges levelled against him with respect to unethical and unwarranted sterilization. I want him cleared because I want to believe that our medical profession is made of impeccably honourable and competent people. I want to believe that those who graduate from state universities in Sri Lanka learn the relevant skills and show absolute fidelity to professional ethics. I want him cleared because it would help dial down the lunacy among a certain section of the population to see a terrorist in every Muslim.

Continue reading

Leave a comment

Filed under accountability, chauvinism, communal relations, legal issues, life stories, politIcal discourse, social justice, sri lankan society, the imaginary and the real, truth as casualty of war

Clobbering Rajiv Gandhi as Chastisement in 1987: A Guti Dheema

Michael Roberts

When Vijithamuni Rohana de Silva upended military discipline and attempted to clobber the Indian Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi on the head as the latter was inspecting a guard of honour on 30th July 1987, he was indulging in an act of chastisement – a guti dheema in Sinhala parlance. As such, in my tendentious elaboration, Rohana de Silva was administering a medicinal pill in the vocabulary of archaic Sinhala – a vocabulary that has resonances within the term beheth guliya. [1]

The emphasis on guti dheema was a conjecture I presented way back in 2002.[2] In my reading now, one that Retd Commodore Somasiri Devendra does not share, the intricate details provided recently by Retd Lt KH Perera confirm this set of musings.

 Indo-Lanka Accord about to be signed on 29th July 1987

Continue reading

4 Comments

Filed under accountability, authoritarian regimes, centre-periphery relations, Eelam, foreign policy, governance, historical interpretation, Indian Ocean politics, law of armed conflict, legal issues, life stories, LTTE, military strategy, nationalism, politIcal discourse, power politics, riots and pogroms, security, self-reflexivity, Sinhala-Tamil Relations, sri lankan society, Tamil migration, Tamil Tiger fighters, terrorism, the imaginary and the real, unusual people, vengeance, war reportage, world events & processes

Lapses, Holes and Bumbling Officers in Sri Lanka’s Security Organisations

Officers from the Attorney General’s Department appeared before the Parliamentary Select Committee (PSC) investigating the Easter Sunday attacks this week to defend the department’s position. They said they came to clear a wrong impression created in society over the department’s role with regard to a file related to the National Thowheed Jamaath (NTJ). The documents in the file had been forwarded to the AG’s Department by the Terrorist Investigation Division (TID) in 2017 and 2018.

Giving evidence on behalf of the AG’s Department were Deputy Solicitors General (DSG) Dileepa Peiris and Azad Navavi.Army Commander Lt. General Mahesh Senanayake also testified this week, appearing before the commission for the second time. Others who gave evidence this week were former Defence Secretary Kapila Waidyaratne and Acting TID Director Superintendent of Police Jagath Vishantha. Continue reading

Leave a comment

Filed under accountability, atrocities, centre-periphery relations, communal relations, disparagement, governance, historical interpretation, Islamic fundamentalism, legal issues, life stories, politIcal discourse, power politics, security, self-reflexivity, sri lankan society, terrorism, the imaginary and the real, trauma, truth as casualty of war, unusual people

Machinations and Incompetence that assisted Zahran and His Killers

Editorial in The Island, 3 August 2019 = “Who prevented Zahran’s Arrest”http://www.island.lk/index.php?page_cat=news-section&page=news-section&code_title=60

The UNP may have thought that it would be able to mount a political blitzkrieg, by way of a parliamentary probe into the Easter Sunday carnage, and lay the blame for the tragedy entirely at the feet of President Maithripala Sirisena, who is the Minister of Defence. Its plan to discredit him and absolve itself of the blame for the government’s failure to prevent the terror attacks has gone awry to all intents and purposes.

Continue reading

Leave a comment

Filed under accountability, atrocities, communal relations, conspiracies, disparagement, governance, historical interpretation, Islamic fundamentalism, sri lankan society, terrorism, the imaginary and the real, unusual people, violence of language, world events & processes

Mahinda Rajapaksa’s Cricketing Aura … Yesteryear

Continue reading

Leave a comment

Filed under accountability, charitable outreach, cricket for amity, cultural transmission, heritage, landscape wondrous, life stories, performance, politIcal discourse, power politics, Sri Lankan cricket, sri lankan society, the imaginary and the real, unusual people

Australia takes Tough Line on Asylum Seeking Boat People

Asiri Fernando, in Sunday Times, 28 July 2019, where the title is

Five Sri Lankan men who attempted to reach Australian shores by boat were repatriated to Colombo this week. Several attempts by Sri Lankans to sail illegally into Australia the past three months have raised questions if human smugglers are probing Canberra’s resolve to stop such incursions following the federal election in May.

Three such attempts were intercepted by the Australian and Sri Lankan authorities since then, resulting in 66 Sri Lankans being repatriated, a spokesperson for the Australian Department of Home Affairs said. Police said all those sent back were adult males. Australian authorities notified their Sri Lankan law enforcement counterparts via the Sri Lankan High Commission in Canberra prior to deporting the asylum-seekers by air.

Continue reading

Leave a comment

Filed under accountability, asylum-seekers, Australian culture, australian media, communal relations, disparagement, economic processes, elephant tales, historical interpretation, immigration, Indian Ocean politics, landscape wondrous, security, self-reflexivity, Sinhala-Tamil Relations, sri lankan society, taking the piss, Tamil migration, the imaginary and the real, transport and communications, world events & processes

Ludicrous Science. Huge Error Margins in Death Toll Figures

Chandre Dharmagunawrdena, in Island, 26 July 2019, where the title isGenocide Claims, Number Games and their margins of error”

June 23, 1983  known as “Black July” was a day of shame for Sri Lanka where a government calling itself a “Dharmista Rajya” (a Righteous Regime)  permitted, aided and abetted armed mobs to attack a section of its defenseless citizens — civilian Tamils.  The fact that there were looters, or the possibility that other forces  fished in  troubled waters (http://www.island.lk/index.php?page_cat=article-details&page=article-details&code_title=74181),  or that most DIG’s of the time were Tamils (http://www.island.lk/index.php?page_cat=article-details&page=article-details&code_title=74047), etc.,  are irrelevant to the very clear-cut  main issue. That state-aided  terror  happened in the CAPITAL itself  is a FACT and not some allegation based on a numbers game of guessing how  many Tamils  lived in the Metropolis before and after the event.

Continue reading

Leave a comment

Filed under accountability, asylum-seekers, communal relations, doctoring evidence, historical interpretation, landscape wondrous, life stories, LTTE, mass conscription, military strategy, politIcal discourse, power politics, propaganda, self-reflexivity, Sinhala-Tamil Relations, slanted reportage, sri lankan society, Tamil civilians, Tamil migration, tamil refugees, Tamil Tiger fighters, the imaginary and the real, truth as casualty of war, UN reports, unusual people, vengeance, war reportage, world events & processes