Archive | July, 2010

Low intensity evil in Sri Lanka

How can evil ever be low intensity? It is similar to a low intensity cyclone. It appears to be a misnomer. However it does really exist. A depression given the right conditions which causes spinning and convergence in the atmosphere becomes a highly damaging cyclone. Wisely meteorological institutions track depressions before they become cyclones due […]

Media Development Authority: Another name for media control in Sri Lanka?

The  recent announcement of Government of Sri Lanka’s (GOSL) intention to establish a Media Development Authority (MDA) in Sri Lanka could be taken as an indication of its approach towards media in the context of post-war economic development. An official  statement posted  on 25th July 2010 on a government news portal shows that the proposed […]

THE POLITICAL LESSONS OF THE SMILING ASSASSIN: MURALI, CRICKET AND SRI LANKAN IDENTITY

Photo credit: Associated Press, published in Sydney Morning Herald Savouring the richly deserved cascades of press coverage last week of Muttiah Muralidaran’s retirement from Test cricket on the magnificent record of 800 wickets, it is difficult to resist a surge of heart-warming patriotism. It was not only the doosra-like sequence of events in the last […]

Peace and Reconciliation in Sri Lanka: Is there a way forward?

Good Afternoon, Ladies and Gentlemen and dear friends I want to start my talk by bringing to the fore the experiences of another, which was seen as an intractable conflict – the apartheid struggle in South Africa. In 1984, Mandela single handedly launched negotiations with the Afrikaner government. His reasons were simple and unambiguous. There […]

Final report of All Party Representative Committee (APRC)

Released exclusively on Groundviews, this is a composite document compiled by Yogarajan and Kariapper and made public by them (read the full background to this document in their introduction). Please note that as Nizam Kariapper pointed out to Groundviews, there is a mistake in the first page of this version of the report – the reference […]

Any inspiration Joanna?

Some excellent goals scored, some unbearable moments of anguish celebrated as teams win and lose in an imperfect system, some stunning comebacks, terrible bouts of pain vanishing instantly once the arbitrator with a whistle awards a free kick, the tears of the Japanese, the despair of the Ghanians’, incompetent referees sent out to save face, […]

All Party Representative Committee (APRC) Final Report: Executive Summary

Groundviews received the executive summary of the APRC’s final report today. Download the report here. Salient features covered in the Executive Summary include: Nature of the State Form of Government Status of Buddhism Official languages and national languages Use of the English language Supremacy of the constitution Safeguards against secession Electoral system Power sharing Senate […]

Interview with Dr. A. C. Visvalingam, President, CIMOGG

This interview features Dr. A. C. Visvalingam, President, Citizen’s Movement for Good Governance. I ask him about his advocacy and activism in Sri Lanka, both during war and post-war. Mr. Visvalingam bemoans the fact that a number of articles, despite close ties to Editors and journalists, did not appear in the newspapers, and also speaks […]

Getting lost in The Hague: UN, Sri Lanka and an ICJ-Advisory Opinion

Dr. Lakshman Marasinghe (Emeritus Professor of Law, University of Windsor) in an article titled ‘Some Random Thoughts on the UN International Advisory Panel’ (Daily Mirror, 14 July, 2010), makes a serious suggestion to the Government; i.e. to obtain an Advisory Opinion (AO) from the International Court of Justice (ICJ) at The Hague, to determine “whether […]

NATION-BUILDING: WHICH PROJECT FOR THE NORTH & EAST?

When faced with challenging human rights and humanitarian law issues who should we seek out for advice but a celebrated former Vice President of the International Court of Justice? Faced with the task of peace building after a Thirty Years war, to whom should we turn to spearhead a state-aided national effort, or at the […]

Beam Me Up to Planet Football!

If you’re an alien planning to invade the Earth, choose July 11. Chances are that our planet will offer little or no resistance. Today, most members of the Earth’s dominant species – the nearly 7 billion humans – will be preoccupied with 22 able-bodied men chasing a little hollow sphere. It’s only a game, really, […]

Making Foreign Policy on the Street

The declared threat, the demonstration, siege, fast unto death outside the office of the UN in Colombo by the Wimal Weerawansa led National Freedom Front, raises interesting and alarming questions about policymaking in our country. Wimal Weerawansa announced that he would call upon his supporters to surround the UN office until the UN Secretary General […]

Managing diplomacy with melodrama: Sri Lanka’s Madness

Photo courtesy Vikalpa’s Flickr photostream on the NFF protest The point of departure for this note is the fast unto death by a government (cabinet) Minister, hereinafter referred to as VW, in front of the UN’s Colombo office. The protest campaign launched by the said individual, and his decision to fast, are meant at demonstrating […]