Giant’s Causeway in County Antrim, Ireland

Area = The Giant’s Causeway is an area of about 40,000 interlocking basalt columns, the result of an ancient volcanic fissure eruption. It is located in County Antrim on the north coast of Northern Ireland, about three miles northeast of the town of Bushmills ….

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Tiger Insurgents caught in the Oddusuddan Locality in June 2018

D.B.S. Jeyaraj in Daily Mirror, 30 June 2018, where the title reads “Seizure of Tiger arsenal in North renews fears of an LTTE revival attempt”

The 21km-long Puthukkudiyiruppu-Oddusuddan road progressing through the hinterland of North-Eastern Mullaitivu District, links Puthukkudiyiruppu on the A-35 Paranthan-Mullaitivu highway and Oddusuddan on the A-34 Mankulam-Mullaitivu highway. It was along this road that a trusted deputy of the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE)supremo Velupillai Prabhakaran was killed by the deep penetration squad of the Sri Lankan armed forces on September  26, 2001. Vaithilingam Sornalingam alias “Col” Shankar, the founder-chief of the tiger air wing was killed by a claymore mine hung on a tree as he was driving his two-seater four-wheeler pick-up vehicle alone. The killing transmitted shockwaves amongst LTTE circles as it demonstrated the fact that the armed forces were capable of infiltrating the heartland of tiger-controlled territory and inflicting lethal damage.

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Goodness Gracious! NGOs in Sri Lanka

Lionel Wijesiri, in Daily News, 12 November 2018, where the title reads   “Are NGOs a force for good?”

Jeevan Thiagarajah’s story titled “Why Indonesia is right to limit NGOs” (Daily News – November 5) has induced me to add few of my own thoughts on the same subject. NGOs are nothing new to us since they have been functioning in Sri Lanka for more than six decades. They are highly complex organisations that a simple man-in-the-street will find it difficult to comprehend. In fact, even the term NGO itself has various interpretations.

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Cliffhanging Situation Still? …. After Strong Supreme Court Intervention

Sam Samarasinghe, aka SWR de A Samarasinghe,  courtesy of Colombo Telegraph, 14 November 2018,  where the title reads “Pulling Back From The Brink: The Supreme Court Verdict & Its Implications”

“Me First” In sharp contrast, the president, who is the head of the executive branch, has been acting in the last two weeks with impunity, largely in his own self-interest. The legislative branch (parliament) has become an auction house where bribery reigns, cabinet office is available as a bribe for partisan behavior and self comes before country for very many MPs.

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About King Frog in One Little Frog-Hole: Lanka’s Decline

Introducing Richard Simon

While composing a history of S. Thomas’ College Mount Lavinia, Richard Simon has crafted an essay that praises Canon De Saram for his vision in keeping the school out of the clutches of the standardized educational platform devised by CWW Kannangara in the 1940s – despite the cost, namely, considerable privation in the trappings of the school borne for several decades. Deploying the metaphor of knowledge focused solely on the height of one’s own Piduratalagala with blanket inattention to that of Mount Everest, Simon presents a slashing criticism of the overkill in indigenization ushered in by the political processes of the 1940s to 1970s – here echoing one of Canon RS de Saram’s prize-day speeches where the latter asked: “What do they know of Ceylon who only Ceylon know?”

 CWW Kannangara 

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Interpretative Argie-Bargie I: Samarasinghe vs Rajapakse

The political wrestling match in Sri Lanka beginning in late October has led to a host of articles arguing for and against the Sirisena-Rajapaksa intervention and the attempted deposition of Prime Minister Ranil Wickremasinghe (an issue that is still in limbo).  The list of essays in the public realm from legal experts as well as membe s of the intelligentsia is as tall as any coconut tree …. and both parties claim to be Mount Everest. Some of these essays have already been featured in Thuppahi and there are simply too many essaysin print and internet for anyone to read all. So, my samples are chance hits. HERE I have Sam Samarasinghe in one corner and Ruwan Rajapakse in another –not addressing each other as such, but serving as samples of the intellectual fisticuffs here-there-everywhere.

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East Asian Leaders challenge Trump and demand Open Markets

News Item by Agence France-Press in THE NATION of Singapore,12 November 2018,  entitled “Call for open markets as world leaders gather in Singapore”

Singapore’s prime minister made an impassioned plea Monday for open markets and warned “political pressures” were driving countries apart, in a swipe at rising protectionism at the start of a gathering of world leaders.

Leaders including Chinese Premier Li Keqiang and US Vice President Mike Pence are meeting this week in the city-state against the backdrop of a months-long trade dispute between Beijing and Washington. Some of those attending are expected to announce major progress on a massive China-backed trade deal that excludes the US, in a rebuke to President Donald Trump’s increasingly unilateralist approach to international commerce.

Trump is skipping the annual summit — which was regularly attended by his predecessor Barack Obama — in a sign of how far he has withdrawn from attempts to shape the global rules of trade and raising new questions about Washington’s commitment to Asia.

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