Category Archives: truth as casualty of war

Malinda and Shenali tilt at SOFA and MCC Schemes

Editor: I have not had the time to study the SOFA and MCC proposals or the several conflicting reports on this set of topics; while I have reservations about my own deciphering capacity on economic issues. An academic with a broad span of experience across several countries indicated to me this month  that the discussions surrounding these two issues has been marked by writings that “[ignore] facts that are unfavorable to the case that is being made or willfully distorting facts or using outright lies”.

He added: : ‘Unfortunately, this kind of unacceptable commentary is now common practice the world over and that includes some people in the highest levels of US government and academia.”

To this caution I add Sam Samarasinghe’s[i] cautionary email note to me a few months back where he indicated that the USA’s governing order is complex and its various arms do not always work with one mind.[ii]

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Extremist Fervour as Roadblock for Reconciliation: A High Profile Example from the Galle-Lit-Fest

RK Radhakrishnan, in The Hindu, 2011 (?)https://www.thehindu.com/books/books-reviews/reconciliation-elusive-on-the-ground/article6164031.ece

The packed hall at the Galle Literary Festival was stunned into silence by a series of abuses hurled on a Sri Lankan human rights activist by a member in the audience. The hurler of abuses, a well-known journalist, questioned the activist’s patriotism, labelled her pro-Tiger, and described her as a ‘stooge’ of the Western nations. Oh yes, that was just the printable part.

The activist at the receiving end was Sunila Abeysekera. She was one of the panelists on ‘Aftershock: The lingering legacy of civil war,’ presented by the BBC World Service. Nigerian novelist Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, and event moderator Bridget Kendall (BBC’s diplomatic correspondent) were on stage. The exchange presented a clear idea of the differing perceptions on the concept of reconciliation.

Rajpal Abeynaike

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US Scheming Looms over India and Lanka

Shenali Waduge, in Lankaweb, 9 February 2020, where the title is Balkanizing India: National Security dimensions for India & Sri Lanka”

Indo-Sri Lanka relations have never been what either country would have liked it to be. What both countries should realize is that small as Sri Lanka may be, India cannot afford to bully it or destabilize it as India would have liked. The terrain is now far different than when India could call the shots in 1980s. There are bigger and far more powerful players that even India needs to weather with caution. There are many faux pas that India will not like to admit to, but what India must realize is that if it is in Sri Lanka’s best interest to ensure India remains unbalkanized, it is to India’s best interest that Sri Lanka remains without elements that covertly propose to do what was done to the Soviet Union & the former Yugoslavia.

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Our Constitutional Language Mediums: Bombastic Lies from Gammanpila and Others

FactCheck at http://factcheck.lk/claim/udaya-gammanpila-10

Statement

[According to Article 7 of the constitution] Sri Lanka’s national anthem is “Sri Lanka Maatha“… if anything other than the words of “Sri Lanka Maatha” contained in the third schedule is considered to be the national anthem, it would be a violation of the constitution.

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Our Anthem FOR Hearts and Minds

Michael Roberts

The full-frontal challenges from Janaka Perera and Daya Hewapathrane[1] to my advocacy of the National Anthem being sung in Sinhala and Tamil are on different scales, the one moderate and the latter extremist/chauvinist. But they are not totally apart. Both indulge in cherry-picking examples from the world beyond Sri Lanka to bolster their prejudices. More significantly, the moderate claims of JP work insidiously to bolster the extremists like DH and, worse still, to alienate moderate Tamils (the extremist Tamils, in my assessment, are beyond conversion to amity or sanity).

 

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Facing the Geneva Threat: Lessons not Learnt

Neville Ladduwahetty, Island 29 January 2020, in with this title “GENEVA: Lessons NOT Learnt”

 

Lady Justice reading a book

According to a report in The Island of January 23, 2020, Minister Keheliya Rambukwella had stated “that the new government’s stand on the Geneva accountability resolution would be based on the position taken by former Foreign Minister Tilak Marapana, P.C. on behalf of the previous government…”.

“The Government of Sri Lanka at the highest political levels, has both publicly and in discussions with the present and former High Commissioner for Human Rights and other interlocutors, explained the constitutional and legal challenges that preclude it from including non-citizens in its judicial processes. It has been explained that if non-citizen judges are to be appointed in such a process, it will not be possible without an amendment to the Constitution by 2/3 of members of the Parliament voting in favour and also the approval of the people at a referendum”.

 

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When Vengeance drives Human Rights Recrimination on the World Stage: The Ban Ki-moon Story

Michael Roberts

As the annual witch-hunt directed at Sri Lanka from the UNHRC at Geneva looms, we can benefit from recalling the role of the UN Secretary General, Ban Ki-moon, in this pantomime. Ban Ki-moon is a South Korean who has been identified as “a lackey” of USA in the same category as Kofi Annan by the Canadian activist Chris Black in an email communication on 20th January 2020. Ban Ki-moon and the UN Rehabilitation Commissioner, Navy Pillai were behind the selection of Marzuki, Sooka and Ratner to man the UN Panel of Investigation whose report has served as the foundation for the campaign mounted by the UNHCR offices in Geneva to hound Sri Lanka for human rights abuses.

Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon (r) is greeted by IDPs (Internaly Displaced Percons) as he visits Manik Farm in Sri Lanka on May 23, 2009.
AFP PHOTO/JOE KLAMAR (/AFP/Getty Images)       

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