Archive | February, 2011

Moving Tamil Dissent Politics Beyond Anti-LTTEism

To be able to engage in dissent politics one needs enormous courage. Not only in terms of the threats and dangers that come your way as a result of your decision to dissent (I remember Kethesh Loganathan once mentioning that when you dissent you risk bullets from multiple sides unlike when you take sides, when […]

Lanka @ 63: The ‘military business model’ of post-war economic development

On 4 February, Sri Lanka celebrated its 63rd birthday. After nearly three decades of armed conflict, it is now one of Southasia’s calmest and fastest-growing countries. Its social indicators, apart from the northeast zone, remain the best in the region, and its strategic location is inviting investments from both Asian giants, China and India. Its […]

Winds of Change 2.0 and its Implications

The sweeping wave of protests over West Asia is refreshing to see twenty-two years after the fall of the Berlin wall. The demise of repressive communist regimes in Eastern Europe was not due to the direct intervention of the west, but the overall impact of home grown people’s power movements, which gathered pace as the […]

Sri Lankan cricket and social work: Interview with Kushil Gunasekera

Kushil Gunasekera is Muttiah Muralitharan’s manager for over 10 years. Though this came up in the discussion along with Sri Lanka’s prospects at the Cricket World Cup this year, the chief focus of discussion was based on Kushil’s other life as the founder of the Foundation of Goodness and his social work in Seenigama. Kushil […]

Follies and Fantasies in the Sri Lankan Conflict

In an often quoted line Marx remarked, “history repeats itself first as tragedy, second as farce” and years later, Henry Ford, not known exactly either for his scholarship or his political wisdom, nevertheless said wisely “we want to live in the present and the only history that is worth a tinker’s damn is the history […]

The Curious Case of Diplomats & that ‘Internal Conflict’

We are in the USA, far away from Sri Lanka. Dr. Palitha Kohona, Sri Lanka’s Permanent Representative to the UN (in New York), had this to say: “We have come to a point where we don’t need to be defensive. As a country we need to be proud, we need to reach out, we need […]

The Tamil Diaspora and the Future of the Tamil Struggle

Today, the 18th of February, finds us three months away from the second anniversary of the “Mullivaikal Massacre”. At this juncture it is important to ask the question: What constructive action can be taken by the Tamil Diaspora to build a better future for the Tamil nation? In Tamil culture, at a funeral, all the […]

Democracy in Sri Lanka: Ideas and responses

In March 2010, Groundviews launched a unique initiative online to ascertain what citizens perceived and accepted as democracy in Sri Lanka. To date, 74 people have submitted 42 ideas and cast 596 votes, but what do YOU think? Click on http://bit.ly/sldemocracy To coincide with a planned in-depth survey on democracy in Sri Lanka by Social Indicator, the polling arm of […]

Commemorative lecture on second death anniversary of Lasantha Wickrematunge

“Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about things that matter” ~ Martin Luther King Jr, (15 January 1929 ~ 4 April 1968), (Activist, Clergyman, and prominent leader in African ~ American Civil rights movement) A commemorative lecture to mark the second death anniversary of Sunday leader editor Lasantha Wickrematunge was held […]

It is ubiquitous Februaries, not that unique Leninist October that counts

Photo courtesy Al Jazeera. Taken on 11 February 2011, Al Jazeera notes that a crowd of thousands marched back toward Tahrir Square from the presidential palace, young men sprinted along the streets and through the grassy median separating the wide boulevard, trailing Egyptian flags behind them. Grinning drivers waved and held their hands in peace […]

Long Form journalism: An invitation to contribute

As many regular readers and commentators on this site know, in January Groundviews launched the Long Reads section. The print media industry in Sri Lanka, for economic and political reasons, does not afford a space for compelling essays on society, politics, the arts, culture, religiosity, literature and other topics. Long Reads on Groundviews aims to […]

Sri Lanka’s Flood Response: In Dimbulagala, people protest and plead

As the rains abated and flood waters begin to recede, the return and resumption of normal lives presents itself as a big challenge in many parts of the country. In the villages in Dimbulagala DS division in Polonnaruwa District, home to some of the poorest people in the country the impact was devastating and the […]

Queen of Murasumottai celebrates her centenary birthday

“May you live to be 100 and may the last voice you hear be mine” ~ Frank Sinatra (1915 ~ 1998), (American Author and Singer) Louisa Arulamma Thambyrajah celebrates her centenary birthday today ~ 6th of February 2011. She was born on 6th of February 1911 in her ancestral home in Chaavakachcheri in Jaffna Peninsula, […]

THE NEED TO ENERGISE CIVIL SOCIETY

Note: The Editors of Groundviews received via email the text of this speech delivered by Jayantha Dhanapala at the Citizen’s Movement for Good Governance on the 9th of February 2011. I begin by expressing my deep gratitude for the invitation to address you so as to share some of my thoughts on this important subject. […]