Archive | May, 2011

Floating Spaces: Theatre and censorship in Sri Lanka

Some of the best conversations featured on this site have been with those involved in the arts in Sri Lanka. Noted theatre personalities featured on Groundviews to date include Tracy Holsinger, Mohamed Adamaly and the iconic Iranganie Serasinghe. Jake Oorloff joins this august list, and as Co-Creative Director of Floating Space Theatre Company, his work […]

Is the war crimes video confirmed by UN as authentic “unrepresentative and irrelevant”?

The Report of the Special Rapporteur on extrajudicial summary or arbitrary executions, Christof Heyns, presented at the 17th Session of the United Nations Human Rights Council sessions in Geneva today found, after digital forensic investigations, new footage from the final days of Sri Lanka’s civil war as authentic and proving that war crimes took place […]

Finding the Middle Ground

Just over a week ago, a couple of my colleagues and I appeared on a prominent Canadian talk show discussing our attempts, as both individuals and organizing members of the Young Canadians’ Peace Dialogue on Sri Lanka hosted by the Mosaic Institute, to find a middle ground with respect to the relationship of the Canadian Diaspora […]

Trafalgar Tigers

A demonstrator shouts anti-Sri Lankan government slogans during a protest outside a hotel, where Sri Lanka’s President Mahinda Rajapaksa is staying in central London on Dec. 2, 2010. Photo credit Dylan Martinez/Reuters It is truly a pity that the Sri Lankan media did not feature the photographs of the demonstrations by sections of the Tamil […]

India “Punishing Sri Lanka”: Myth or Reality?

Prof. Rohan Gunaratne- international terrorism expert- addressing the business community last week convincingly and openly cautioned that “India might ‘punish’ Sri Lanka”, if Sri Lanka leans elsewhere to India’s detriment. This is a very serious statement, especially if Indians do not intend doing so. To prove his point, he quoted a meeting with the first […]

The Indo- Sri Lanka Joint Communique: Delineating the Parametres of Action in Response to the Panel Report

[Editors’ note: An edited version of this article appeared in the Daily Mirror on the 26th of May 2011.] 4. Both sides agreed that the end of armed conflict in Sri Lanka created a historic opportunity to address all outstanding issues in a spirit of understanding and mutual accommodation imbued with political vision to work […]

A robust debate on No Fire Zones (NFZs) and International Humanitarian Law: Artful dodging of war crimes in Sri Lanka?

Original image courtesy PEDRO UGARTE/AFP/Getty Images A central challenge of curating content on Groundviews is that some of the most interesting discussions which occur on comment threads get obscured over time, and are less visible than the primary material published here. A case in point is the recent thrust and parry of wit over the […]

Two years after war’s end in Sri Lanka: What can the Tamil and Sinhala diaspora do?

Our review of The Cage by Gordon Weiss elicited an interesting question. Under the monicker Burning_Issue, the comment asked for advice on how best to engage with the Rajapaksa regime, and what the (Tamil) diaspora should do two years after the war ended. The comment is worth reading in full, and the most pertinent section […]

Sri Lanka May Yet Be Lost, or Saved

Original photo Ranga Sirilal | Reuters Two years after the comprehensive defeat of the LTTE, the end of Sri Lanka’s civil war is still playing itself out.  Take the events of the past month for example:  the public release of a UN Panel Report supported accusations of war crimes against both main parties to the […]

The continuing disinformation campaigns in Sri Lanka: Is mainstream media complicit?

For the second time in a fortnight, subscribers to the Daily Mirror newspaper have been entreated to an interesting disinformation campaign that appears to be conducted with those embedded within, and possibly with the full support of the Sri Lankan Army and its network of patriots. The full page ad above was published on the […]

Going beyond mainstream media: The best Twitter feeds on and from Sri Lanka

Just over a year ago, in April 2010, Groundviews launched two curated Twitter lists on Sri Lanka to help those in and outside the country access news, information and critical conversations that went far beyond mainstream media’s economic and partisan shackles. One list featured some of the most compelling bloggers in Sri Lanka. The other, […]

A review of ‘The Cage: The Fight for Sri Lankan & The Last Days of the Tamil Tigers’

I was elated to take delivery of my copy of The Cage by Gordon Weiss yesterday. Having pre-ordered it off Amazon UK, I fully expected it to be held up by Customs officials in Sri Lanka, given the incendiary issues the book is anchored to and its author, an erstwhile employee of the United Nations […]

Elephant Walk revisited: Mixing Tea, Jumbos and Monsoons

[Editors note: For an in-depth interview on Sri Lanka’s human-elephant conflict, see Humans vs. elephants: Sri Lanka’s tragic on-going conflict] If those hardy Englishmen and Scotsmen who ran large tea plantations in Ceylon were far removed from the local people and realities, western movie makers were much more so. They could just as well have come […]

Marketing a troubled land: War, peace and tourism in Sri Lanka

Srilal Miththapala is a Project Director/Consultant at the Ceylon Chamber of Commerce, Sri Lanka. With decades of experience in the hospitality industry, he is also one of the country’s most experienced voices on tourism development. Having experience the fallout of the war, the JVP insurrection and suicide bombings on the tourism industry, Srilal in this […]

Removing the Emperor’s Clothes

Original image from Lanka Polity Universities, academics and university students have been hogging the limelight in the last several weeks in unprecedented ways. The Rajapakse regime’s systematic destruction of the higher education system in this country has run into a few impediments.  University academics from around the country have emerged from a partly self-induced exile […]