Photo courtesy JDS

The decision of the Sri Lankan government to lift the Emergency Regulations (ER) is received in good faith by many. For example, the International Community has expressed its pleasure and satisfaction. The Indian minister of external affairs, S.M. Krishna welcomed the move as an “effective step leading to genuine national reconciliation in the country” (The Hindu, August 27, 2011). At the same time, it has also generated a suspicion whether the act of repeal is merely an attempt “to generate good publicity for the government on the eve of the meeting of the United Nations Human Rights Council in Geneva next month” (The Telegraph, Calcutta, August 30, 2011). This sense of uncertainty and doubt has being substantiated by the introduction of new regulations which would provide the basis for the operation of Prevention of Terrorism Act (PTA), High Security Zones (HSZs) and prosecution of LTTE cadres etc. In addition, militarisation of the society, internalisation of emergency rules within the institutions responsible for law and order and the systemic issues which encourage authoritarian practices of politics other than the prevalence of PTA and Public Security Ordinance (PSO) have resulted in a permanent state of emergency.

Since 1971, Sri Lanka has been in a constant state of emergency with the exception of very brief periods. The state has demonstrated an immense penchant towards emergency laws in responding to various kinds of crises such as communal riots, youth riots, even natural disasters and labour strikes. Excessive use of emergency regulations for a long period of time has resulted in a complex and intricate system of legal framework which has in return blurred the distinction between normal laws and emergency laws. Such an environment brews a sense of uncertainty in exercising one’s right to free speech and association.

State of emergency or the State of Exception as Giorgio Agamben[1] puts it, is the anomic space within the legal framework which excludes us from our right to political and civil rights.  There had being different forms of state of exceptions in the history, from state of siege, state of necessity, marshal law to presidential dictatorship. State of exception which is originally meant to be an interim period during crisis situations such as war, diseases, climate disasters and economic downfalls, has resulted in expansion of the powers of the executive to the legislative sphere, suspension of the constitution and prolongation war time authority in peace time infringing on the civil life. Exception rendered by the “permanent state of emergency” (p.2) risks “for the physical elimination not only of political adversaries but of entire categories of citizens who for some reason cannot be integrated into the political system” (p. 2). As a result, in instants of crisis and unrest, the governments use ‘safe haven’ of exception to crack down upon dissent. Agamben further states that creation and maintaining of a permanent state of exception is “one of the essential practices of contemporary states, including so-called democratic ones” (p. 2). It is “the dominant paradigm of politics in contemporary politics” (p. 2).

The foundation of emergency regulations in Sri Lanka is two pillared. One pillar comprises of the Public Security Ordinance (PSO) 1947, a last piece of law ratified by the British in order to suppress and control the political dissent. The other is the Prevention of Terrorism Act (PTA) of 1979, a temporary measure, yet remained in force forever since its enforcement. In this context, an abolition of state of emergency without addressing its real base is futile. The new rules introduced as emergency regulations and its various provisions relapses in pretext of permitting the continuance of High Security Zones in the North, proscription of the LTTE, handling of ex-LTTE combatants detained and empowering the office of the Commissioner General of Rehabilitation (CGOR) add on to this. It is just an interim to a new era of state of emergency, which Mohan Peiris, the former Attorney General of Sri Lanka, refers to as “the Emergency Consequential Provisional Bill” (Daily Mirror, August 31, 2011).

Obscure nature of the practice of emergency leading to insecurity has had a deep impact on the society. Superimposition of state security over the individual security in formulating national security policies has led to a disjuncture between the state and the individual ensuing a negative bearing on the social capital in the society. There is a depreciation of trust among the individuals and the state. The violent attack against the trade union action of the BOI workers who opposed the Pension Bill shed light on the brutal nature of state force against its population. In Sri Lanka, it is taken for granted that the state executes force only against the Tamils owing to a series of ‘othering’ which took place during the Civil War between the Government of Sri Lanka and the LTTE. Characterisation of the identity of the state after the ethnic majority, the Sinhalese also has influenced this perception. Though the state has used force against the Sinhalese in the South several times such as in 1971, in the late 1980s and early 1990s, these memories are long forgotten.  In such instances of short memory, BOI attacks came as a cruel reminder of the brutality of the state irrespective of ethnicity and religion.

If somebody is to say that transition from emergency to normalcy will be a gradual, step by step process, there seems no sign of such a transition from the side of the Sri Lankan polity. The Executive Presidency, the mother of most of evils in Sri Lanka with its wide ambit of powers continues to grow while slashing on transparency and accountability. Even though the original idea behind the 18th amendment was to improve accountability facilitating the President to attend the parliament and participate in debates, the ad-hoc manner of its practice can explain the actual ground reality.

One may presume that a state which has being socialised, internalised under emergency, which is accustomed to execute its day-to-day activities through a securitised discourse, in consequence undergoing a transformation of its identity and character, would find it difficult to survive in a state of normalcy. In such a situation, the state would have no other alternative except to maintain the environment by various overt and covert tactics and policies. Therefore, the attempt of the Sri Lankan government to replace emergency laws with another set of laws under a different name, yet meant to do the same task is not surprising. State of emergency is not only a particular set of laws. Removing emergency regulations while continuing with militarisation and a massive project of policing in socio-cultural arenas do not indicate a journey towards normalcy.


[1] Agamben, Giorgio, (2005) State of Exception, The University of Chicago Press: Chicago and London.

  • Dessert Fox

    … but certainly an ‘auto tyrant’ mode journey towards the ‘Garrison State’ beautified by secret military torture chambers and abattoirs to ‘process’ those who demand democratic rights and dissent tyranny.

  • justitia

    Amali, you are entirely correct.
    The Defence Secretary says that “attacking a police station or army camp is a ‘terrorist act'”.
    The police say that such acts will be dealt with under the PTA – which stipulates that a citizen can be held in custody without trial for three months and that this period can be extended by the Defence Secretary.
    He does not say that the military – or, police – attacking civilians is a ‘terrorist act’.

    We are now ruled by an authoritarian and despotic government which gave itself and the head of state unlimited power and immunity from prosecution in a court of law, thanks to politicians who changed their allegiance for their own benefit.

  • Since the latter part of 2005, we have been living under a “State of Idiocy.” But the many who bang their chests, scream ‘maathroobooomeeeyaar’ and endorse everything this ‘Family Dictatorship’ does, do not have enough brain cells in their heads to comprehend this…

    • Tom Lepski- Detective 2nd grade

      Dear PresiDunce Bean

      As amazed as we are by your superior intelligence with which you analyzed that majority of Sri Lankans are idiots given they do not possess enough brain cells (oh my!!) ,still we are curious to find what would in your view be an ideal alternative to the present situation. Had Mr Ranil Wickremasinghe the darling blue eyed boy of the Liberal intelligentsia and Colombo 7 cocktail circuit won 2005 election (yours truly voted Ranil BTW as he was uncomfortable with anti West,nationalist allies of MR rather than the man himself) won the election of 2005 do you believe Prabhakran and LTTE would have metamorphosed themselves in to cuddly kittens and swap their demand for Ealaam in to a more “meaningful” Internal Self Governance (whatever THAT means) /Confederation whatever and SL would have by now turned in to Ireland 2.0 ??? Oh we could even have former guerrillas incorporated in to the armed forces like some joker said during the Piece Process (yes borrowed that term from the nationalist lobby)…. Would like to know your views on all above brainy boy :)P.S do you take Prozac to stay high 🙂

    • Tom Lepski- Detective 2nd grade

      Dear PresiDunce Bean

      Why are you silent , O Brainy One !

      We are waiting for your droplets of wisdom, and we are not willing to wait like old Adlai Stevenson did for his Soviet counterpart.

      So hurry !!! and answer our queries above

  • Mary

    Militarisation, militarisation, militarisation……

    http://www.tamilnet.com/art.html?catid=13&artid=34387
    SL military prepares for next phase of militarisation, 6 September 2011:
    While the Sri Lankan military operated ‘grease devil’ phenomenon has disturbed normalcy in the North and East sustaining a state of emergency, around 4,000 Sri Lanka Army, Navy and Air Force personnel have been engaged in a joint military exercise named ‘Cormorant Strike 2011’ for the last three weeks in Trincomalee. The SL Army commander Lt. Gen. Jagath Jayasuriya, who participated in the concluding event of the joint exercise on ‘counter terrorist actions’ and ‘amphibious landings’ on Monday claimed that the SL military personnel were being trained on how to act under normal laws since the state of emergency has been withdrawn.

  • Off the Cuff

    Dear Amali,

    You state “In Sri Lanka, it is taken for granted that the state executes force only against the Tamils owing to a series of ‘othering’ which took place during the Civil War between the Government of Sri Lanka and the LTTE.”

    I was surprised to find the above statement embedded amongst the gobbledegook

    What happened to the SINHALA youth who revolted and took arms against the State? Wasn’t the Government’s response towards the SINHALA youth much more Brutal?

    Criticise the Government all you want, factually, but please desist from Denigrating Sri Lanka by concocting despicable Lies.

    Governments come and governments go but Sri Lanka remains.

    Why stoop to Deceit?

    By way of an excuse to the above statement you state “Though the state has used force against the Sinhalese in the South several times such as in 1971, in the late 1980s and early 1990s, these memories are long forgotten.”

    Forgotten?
    Forgotten by who?
    The Mothers, Fathers, Wives, Children, Sisters and Brothers of the victims?

    Personally I did not lose any of my friends or relatives but I have not forgotten the horrors of the many burnt bodies on the roadside, the floating corpses in rivers, the Tyre pyres etc and will carry that horrific memory till I die and I believe any human who witnessed these would do so too.

    Was 20 years enough for you to forget?

    Yes the Government has been Brutal against insurrections but there has been no ETHNIC bias to that as you try to project. You may have forgotten but the Majority has not.

  • sambar

    Dear OfftheCuff,

    The often sadistic brutality and unnecessary and extreme violence of the armed forces of Sri Lanka whoever it was against is on the record. You yourself note it.

    But when it came to the Tamils there was also a definite ethnic dimension to it that made the armed forces behave in an even worse way.

    With the Sinhalese of course large numbers of the youth and some of their family members were totured and killed, but when it came to the Tamils whole villages and hospitals were bombed and even babies were not spared – and this was even before 2009.

    No Sinhalese civilians were ever coralled into a small region and then shelled and bombed as happened to the Tamils in 2009.

    • @sambar

      Well said. The truth is bitter…but it is the truth nevertheless.

      • yapa

        sambar is telling deliberate lies. Can’t you remember Temple of tooth in Kandy was bombed by LTTE. (May be sambar is using the tricky word “bomb” to mean dropping bombs from airplanes, yes, in that sense it is true, LTTE did not have that much of air power. They had the intention but had no powers, that is the reason, not that they are good saints.)

        It has been long noticed sambar has been in the habit of leveling allegations without evidence, which is not fair play.

        Thanks!

      • sambar

        Dear Yapa,

        Nothing so complicated as you make out.

        We are discussing the brutality of the SL Armed Forces toward civilians and their temples!

        I was pointing out the ethnic dimension to the SLAF violence.

        (Besides if the SLAF haddn’t behaved the way they did perhaps the LTTE would have also avoided the Kandy temple – who knows?).

      • yapa

        Dear sambar;

        You are slipping away from your central arguments as ever. You express most damaging and untruthful statements and when countered you slip away changing the topic.

        Now tell this forum that your mighty arbitrary statement of your post of
        September 8, 2011 • 3:54 pm was wrong or not. Here is that statement for your easy reference.

        “No (Sinhala) Buddhist temples were ever bombed or looted, but (Tamil) Hindu temples were!”

        I put to you are engaged in the habit of making allegation based on wrong and created facts to discredit Sinhalese and to white wash the LTTE and Tamil brutality.

        Do you accept it, or you want me to prove it using the correct data from the beginning of your posts?

        Thanks!

      • Off the Cuff

        Dear Yapa,

        Feinting Amnesia or Dementia is his modus operandi when caught in his own Lies.

        I have pointed this out to him in my post at http://groundviews.org/2011/09/05/state-of-emergency-in-sri-lanka-with-or-without-it/#comment-36478

      • yapa

        Dear Off the Cuff;

        In a way people like sambar are doing a great service to the country with such behaviour. They are making a way to expose mythical and unreasonable base of the separatist Tamil ideologies. They are showing that their foundations are made up of “Pittus” and “Polsambols”.

        They are creating opportunities for us to show the truth to the world. When the crane (kana koka) flies only you can see the colour underneath. We must let them fly higher and higher. I think we must be thankful to sambar and other friends.

        Thanks!

    • Off the Cuff

      Dear Sambar and Presi Dunce,

      I will let a Tamil of repute and standing, respond to what you have written

      Extract
      Take the case of Suthanthirapuram which was declared as the first No-Fire Zone for the civilians. The LTTE moved their radio station and artillery unit to fire at Army points from NFZ. They were also firing at the advancing army from close proximity to the hospital or make-shift hospital. The AGA Parthipan and Dr Shanmugaraja can confirm this.

      These are facts. How do I know all this? I travelled Sri Lanka seven times last two years widely in war zones in Wanni and talked to the victims who were trapped in the war zones. They knew that they were targeted both sides and they could not comprehend why the LTTE should expose to retaliatory fire in the NFZ. They could not understand why the LTTE turned the NFZ into a war zone.

      However, I wish to emphasize that at this stage the government has to accept responsibility for their share of the civilian casualties and apologise for that and compensate the next of kin. In calling for justice it is fair and just to hold the leaders in the Tamil expatriate groups who financed, lobbied, and gave moral and material support to the LTTE to prolong their futile war. They too are liable for aiding and abetting a banned terrorist group. Justice demands that these leaders, posing as human rights activists in Western bases, too should be tried for the crimes committed by the LTTE against their own people.

      On balance, it must be conceded that the elimination of the ruthless LTTE outfit was commendable. What Prabhakaran did to Sri Lanka was 100 time worse that Al-Qaida and Osama bin Laden did to America. Like America any democratic country had the right to eliminate threats to its sovereignty, peace and stability, transgressing, if necessary, international humanitarian law and international law.
      End extract

      Dr Noel Nadeson is the Editor of 14 years of the Tamil Newspaper Uthayam. This is only a part of what Dr Nadeson has written. Its available on the Internet if you are interested in knowing more.

      Were you as vociferous with the LTTE when they were shooting Tamils?
      Did you campaign publicly against the LTTE atrocities perpetrated on the Tamils? Did you campaign against the Fund Raising that supported the subjugation, torture and Murder of the Tamils held by the LTTE? Did you contribute yourself? My Tamil friends who live in the UK could not visit the Vanni to see their relatives without paying the LTTE a large sum of money calculated on the number of years they lived abroad.

      The Deliberate targeting of Babies and Pregnant women was done by the Tamil Tigers and not by the SLA. It was the Tamil Tigers who raided Sinhala villages and ripped open the bellies of pregnant women and smashed the heads of Babies against tree trunks. These are well documented and photographic evidence exist. They could not have done this without the continued moral and financial support of the flag waving Tamil Diaspora.

      You try to put an ethnic dimension in to the armed forces actions and here again I will allow Dr Nadeson to reply

      Extract
      Then there is the documented story of Velupillai Prabhakaran herding nearly 300,000 Tamil civilians to serve as his human shield when he was retreating. In the last stages he shot the Tamils who were running away from him into the arms of the Sri Lankan forces who were commended or their humanitarian services by the Ban Ki-moon’s expert panel and even by Gordon Weiss. Any Tamil who was in Prabhakaran’s human shield will tell you that the Sri Lankan force treated them humanely than the LTTE cadres.
      End extract

      • Lakshan

        Well Put Off the Cup

        Now let’s see what the born again human rights activists of Diaspora can say

      • sambar

        Dear OfftheCuff,

        The discussion is about whether or not the brutal SL Armed Forces and the GOSL policy toward the Tamils is no different to the way the JVP and its supporters and Sinhalese people who lived in the proximity of JVP memebers were treated.

        The answer to that is a definite NO!
        The Tamil ethnic factor plays a very significant part, and the GOSL and SLAF treatment of the Tamils was and continues to be much more brutal and oppressive.

        We can discuss how bad or not the LTTE actually was separately. (Otherwise, all the Sinhala-Buddhists will get even more muddled up than they already are! :))

      • Off the Cuff

        Dear Sambar,

        When you get in to a tight corner you seem to have amnesia or is it dementia?

        This is what you wrote on September 8, 2011 • 3:52 pm

        “No Sinhalese civilians were ever coralled into a small region and then shelled and bombed as happened to the Tamils in 2009.”

        This is what you write today (September 9, 2011 • 5:00 pm )

        “The discussion is about whether or not the brutal SL Armed Forces and the GOSL policy toward the Tamils is no different to the way the JVP and its supporters and Sinhalese people who lived in the proximity of JVP memebers were treated”

        So you see, though you may be suffering from Dementia or Amnesia, what you wrote earlier is on record on GV.

        This is what Dr Nadeson wrote

        Then there is the documented story of Velupillai Prabhakaran herding nearly 300,000 Tamil civilians to serve as his human shield when he was retreating.

        Dr. Nadeson says that the corralling was done by the LTTE and NOT the SLA as you deceitfully impugn.

        You asked a question pertaining to 2009 and the Humanity of the SLA Forces. Dr Nadeson a Tamil of International repute himself, has given you an answer that has flustered and exposed you as a Liar.

        Not only does he say who corralled who, he also quotes as witness Ban Ki Moon’s experts, the Darusman Panel, Gordon Wies an arch critic of the SL govt and even ANY TAMIL who had the misfortune to be in the Human Shield, to certify the COMMENDABLE humanitarian services rendered to the Tamil Civilians by the SLA Forces.

        Neither Dr. Nadeson nor the three members of the Darusman Panel nor Gordon Wies are Sinhala Buddhists. This has delivered a knock out punch to you and the likes of you, as you have been deprived of your favourite defence …. bashing Sinhala Buddhists.

        Please do read the following with more care. Hope you will understand the meaning this time around. And you call yourself more educated than the Sinhalese! Another example why you are pitied and not envied as you claimed.

        Extract
        ………. In the last stages he shot the Tamils who were running away from him into the arms of the Sri Lankan forces who were commended or their humanitarian services by the Ban Ki-moon’s expert panel and even by Gordon Weiss. Any Tamil who was in Prabhakaran’s human shield will tell you that the Sri Lankan force treated them humanely than the LTTE cadres.
        End extract

    • wijayapala

      Sambar,

      No Sinhalese civilians were ever coralled into a small region and then shelled and bombed as happened to the Tamils in 2009.

      But then, the JVP or any other Sinhala armed group never even came close to matching the lethality of the LTTE. Can you show a single battle with the JVP that produced casualties as in Mullaitivu 1996:

      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Battle_of_Mullaitivu_%281996%29

      “During the battle the Sri Lankan military lost at least 1,200 troops. The Sri Lankan Military alleged that 207 soldiers who had surrendered to the LTTE were executed with hundreds appeared to have been herded together, doused with gasoline, and burned to death.[1] It has also been reported that others were found dead clutching white flags of surrender.”

      No Sinhalese civilians were ever coralled into a small region and then shelled and bombed as happened to the Tamils in 2009.

      But it was the LTTE who coralled the Tamils and used them as human shields. How does the SLA bear the responsibility for that?

      • sambar

        Dear Wijayapala,

        May I remind you that what I have written is in the context of discussing whether or not whether or not the brutal SL Armed Forces and the GOSL policy toward the Tamils is no different to the way the JVP and its supporters and Sinhalese people who lived in the proximity of JVP memebers were treated.

        The answer to that is a definite NO!
        The Tamil ethnic factor played and plays a very significant part, and the GOSL and SLAF treatment of the Tamils was and continues to be much more brutal and oppressive.

        Now to the separate issue of how bad or not the LTTE was.
        It is true that the LTTE took no prisoners in that Mullaitheevu operation (very unfortunate), but the gasoline story is a load of GOSL propaganda BS.

        In 2009 the LTTE did no corall the civilians but the brutality of the SLAF made them go with the LTTE.
        And the declaration of the NFZ was a GOSL/SLAF tactic, as David Blacker has also admitted somewhere.
        The point was that when the LTTE moved out the SL forces moved in, until the LTTE realised what the SLAF was up to and didn’t move. Then the GOSL craftily started saying that the LTTE was using human shields.
        That situation proved a win-win for the GOSL’s cunning against the LTTE, but that cunning also involved a callous disregard for the Tamil civilians.

        No, you cannot blame the LTTE at all for the unspeakable inhumanity of the GOSL and the SLAF against the Tamil civilians.

    • Dear sambar;

      “No Sinhalese civilians were ever corralled into a small region and then shelled and bombed as happened to the Tamils in 2009.”

      Now you are showing the signs of a real propagandist. You just try to make a big noise with allegations with wrong information or with no information or unsupported statements. You interpret your wrongs as others’.

      Can you please tell who corralled Tamils into a small region during the war?(and used as human shield against the armed forces of SL and shot when they tried to run away to the side of armed forces?) Tamil doctors worked in that region during the war revealed the LTTE propaganda of shelling the civilians.

      I think you want Sinhalese civilians to go as a human shield of LTTE, to maintain justice, is that what you meant when you say no Sinhalese civilians were ever corralled into a small region? I don’t think you write with a balanced mind.

      Thanks!

      • sambar

        Dear Yapa,

        See my reply to Wijayapala above.

        You wrote: “I think you want Sinhalese civilians to go as a human shield of LTTE, to maintain justice, is that what you meant when you say no Sinhalese civilians were ever corralled into a small region?”

        I think you have got a little overheated and muddled here!

        What I was saying was that unlike what the SL armed Forces did to the Tamil civilians when they fought the LTTE, they [the SLAF] never did the same to the Sinhalese civilians duriing the JVP times.
        Therefore, in keeping with the point of the present discussion, it can be concluded that the GOSL and the SLAF behaved in a more brutal and inhumane way with the Tamils, simply due to the fact of Tamil ethnicity.

      • yapa

        Dear sambar;

        It is true that I was over heated a bit. But I think you didn’t read this post, it has the answers to your unresolved problem above.

        http://groundviews.org/2011/09/05/state-of-emergency-in-sri-lanka-with-or-without-it/#comment-36471

        Thanks!

    • Off the Cuff

      Dear Wijayapala and Yapa,

      Excellent response by you both. But the murder of the 207 soldiers would probably be blamed on Karuna or Pillayan as they have chosen the democratic path but not a word would be said about Adelle.

      As for who corralled the Tamil civilians is quite clear when one reads Dr Nadeson’s letter to Australian Broadcasting Corp. Probably an attempt would be made to discredit Dr Nadeson but he being a Tamil and the Editor of “Uthayam” (Australia’s only Tamil Newspaper) for 14 years would make that a difficult task.

      • wijayapala

        OTC

        But the murder of the 207 soldiers would probably be blamed on Karuna or Pillayan as they have chosen the democratic path but not a word would be said about Adelle.

        Karuna could not have been blamed for what happened at Mullaitivu because he was not there, as far as I know. However Karuna most certainly is guilty of involvement in the deaths of 600 Muslim and Sinhala policemen in 1990.

        As for Adele, there are now efforts to prosecute her for her role in recruiting child soldiers.

      • Off the Cuff

        Dear Wijayapala,

        I was not aware of the Adelle prosecution attempts. Why is it being limited to child soldering when she was the pioneer leader of the Tiger Female Cadres?

        What you say is correct but that would not have stopped those who are looking for scapegoats.

      • yapa

        Dear wija/yapa/la;

        “As for Adele, there are now efforts to prosecute her for her role in recruiting child soldiers.”

        After she has left the LTTE, with a huge amount of money collected for the organization. LTTE supporters are very interested in prosecuting the leaders when the leave the organization. That is why they are eager to prosecute Karuna for crimes when he was in the LTTE.

        I can remember a few months ago Off the Cuff suggested to prosecute Adela for obvious crimes she had done, but I can remember the “jansee” of Tamil diaspora vehemently opposed it, instead offered to prosecute Karuna. Now I think she also must be in the campaign to prosecute Adela.

        http://www.lankapuvath.lk/index.php/home/behind-the-curtain/104-behind-the-curtain/18117-charge-adele-balasingham-for-child-murder-sl-tamils-in-uk

        Soon they would be interested in prosecuting Rudrakumaran as well.

        http://www.lankapuvath.lk/index.php/home/behind-the-curtain/behind-the-curtain-2/18272-lttes-transnational-govt-collapses-nedivayan-threatens-to-kill-rudrakumaran

        Thanks!

  • I find that many of those who commented on this article so far appear to have forgotten some key issues. That the rebelling JVPers were dealt with ruthlessly by the government at that time is history. But the Sinhala public was not harassed by the government and its forces for the sins of the JVP to the extent the Tamils are being harassed today.
    That the LTTE has been eliminated by equally or more ruthless methods is also history. But the Tamil civilians continue to be harassed for the sins of the LTTE. There lies a difference which lead to cries of the government wanting to keep the Tamils under its foot.

    Secondly though the JVP was alleged to have been effectively eliminated then, the causes for which they rebelled still remain largely unaddressed. Similarly though the LTTE has been vanquished, the circumstances that led to Tamil youth taking arms still remain unaddressed in spite of the promises made before the conclusion of the war. As long as the causes for these two rebellions remain ignored one cannot rule out the possibility of these rebellions re-occurring in some form or the other in spite of the much talked of PTA and the additional provisions that they are including into it to suppress dissent.
    Both these revolts were mere symptoms of the problems that exist. Dealing with the symptoms is never going to cure the malady. The government which is drunk with power is foolishly wasting its resources and energies in dealing with the symptoms and allowing the disease to fester. This disease will continue to stifle the progress of the nation unless it is dealt with expeditiously.

    • sambar

      Well said citizen!

    • Off the Cuff

      Dear Concerned Citizen,

      You wrote “the LTTE has been eliminated by equally or more ruthless methods”

      You seem to be comparing the methods used against the JVP and the LTTE.
      I cannot recall seeing Tamil Corpses smouldering or burnt, left by the roadside anywhere in the South, similar to the MULTITUDE of dead Sinhala Youth corpses that we saw by the roadside all over the South including the Capital. There was no shortage of Tamils in the South was there?

      Can you please elaborate by a factual comparison instead of making vague and patently biased statements?

      Please note that I am not endorsing these methods but I do object to biased writing as that contributes towards polarisation and hardening of attitudes.

      You wrote “the Sinhala public was not harassed by the government and its forces for the sins of the JVP to the extent the Tamils are being harassed today”

      You have stated above that
      1. the Sinhala public was harassed
      2. the Tamil public was harassed
      3. that the harassment of the Tamil public was greater

      Here you have made a comparison without supporting material.
      Obviously you have data that many of us do not have.
      would you care to share them please?

  • Voter from North

    @off the cuff,@wijayapala

    Why did Tamils who were held as “human shields” vote for LTTE proxy TNA and not GOSL who rescued them???

    Denial of proven facts and blame game only makes you both look silly!

    • yapa

      Dear Voter from North;

      “Why did Tamils who were held as “human shields” vote for LTTE proxy TNA and not GOSL who rescued them???”

      It seems to be a peculiar behaviour, but it is the natural behaviour of Tamil community in Sri Lanka. Even under huge pressure from the high class Tamils, all the suppressed caste people of Tamils vote for their master class people. Tamils in my view is a community which cannot think out of the box. They are not used to anything other than racist politics, all their political parties are based on their race alone. They never will be able even to peep through the window of their racial box to see the out side world. Their views are trapped in that outdated caste ridden discriminative tribal mentality. They never were able to think of the world without the Tamil bias. I should say in general Tamil mentality is a rouge mentality always looking for taking advantage deceiving others with false theories and false propaganda. their practice in Sri lanka has never been a fair play. They always demand/demanded for disproportionate shares at the expense of others based on rouge theories. 50:50 demand, the demand of rouge “separate traditional homeland”, rogue original inhabitant theory, Mahawansa bashing, Dharmapala bashing all those are manifestations of that peculiar Tamil behaviour. They must try to come out of their cocoon.

      Thanks!

      • Krish

        Why such harsh words for Tamils, yapa? I am sure you have some disagreement with them (Tamils) but to go this far is very extreme. I hope you didn’t write your post when you were in a bad state of mind or something. 🙂

      • yapa

        Dear Krish;

        Sorry, I was a bit over-heated as sambar said(however, not without reasons).

        Thanks!

      • Krish

        Dear Yapa

        Not a problem at all. And you don’t have to apologise either, although it takes great maturity to say “sorry” like the way you did. I liked your positive response to be perfectly honest.

        Yes, I completely understand that some guys could be annoying at times. The problem truly starts when people take a one-sided opinion and annoyingly defend it. Heshan used to do that while I patiently tried to explain. But, such is the nature of internet/blogs I guess that you put up with it after a while. 🙂

        best wishes
        Krish

    • wijayapala

      Why did Tamils who were held as “human shields” vote for LTTE proxy TNA and not GOSL who rescued them???

      Two main reasons:

      1) Tamils as a community have never voted for a mainstream political party since 1956 in parliamentary elections, so I do not see why they would do so in this case. With regard to the “human shields,” their overwhelming hatred toward the LTTE did not necessarily translate into a pro-govt mindset, and whatever goodwill was lost when they were placed in the resettlement camps.

      2) The TNA was a LTTE proxy, but no longer because 1) there is no more LTTE and 2) the TNA purged the LTTE implants such as “Kuthirai” Gajendran and Padmini Sithamparanathan, who formed a separate party which won no seats.

    • Off the Cuff

      Dear Voter from the North,

      You wrote “Denial of proven facts and blame game only makes you both look silly!”

      I believe Yapa has given you an adequately measured response.

      I am not foolish to deny that the TNA won the Northern PC elections but you are foolish to think that the votes against the TNA were insignificant.

      The TNA TULF combine received…. 190,625 votes
      Against TNA ……………………112,035 votes
      The majority is ……………….78,590 Votes

      It only requires 39,296 voters to change their minds for the situation to be reversed. An alarming fact for person’s with your perspective.

      So now please tell us what proven “FACTS” that we have denied?

      You seem to be a person that is Privy to a LOT of Proven Facts.
      Would you please condescend to share them with the Readership of GV?

      How about joining the discussions on 13A, Ethnic Integration Policy of Singapore, CH4 Lies, Traditional Tamil Homeland Claims, Equitable sharing of Public Property, Trinco Buddha Statue and many other topics that I have raised in my posts on GV and proving to the World that you are in the Right?

      Please join in the discussions directly, Voter from the North and Enrich them with your wisdom.

  • yapa

    “But the Sinhala public was not harassed by the government and its forces for the sins of the JVP to the extent the Tamils are being harassed today.”

    There is a saying in Sinhala, “E, E banisata E, E kehelgediya”, Reaction in accordance with the action.

    JVP was a little kitten before the brutal LTTE monster.

    “Secondly though the JVP was alleged to have been effectively eliminated then, the causes for which they rebelled still remain largely unaddressed. Similarly though the LTTE has been vanquished, the circumstances that led to Tamil youth taking arms still remain unaddressed in spite of the promises made before the conclusion of the war. As long as the causes for these two rebellions remain ignored one cannot rule out the possibility of these rebellions re-occurring in some form or the other in spite of the much talked of PTA and the additional provisions that they are including into it to suppress dissent.”

    Expressed causes of both JVP and LTTE were not genuine. The real causes of both rebellion were the wrong ideologies they believed.

    JVP believed the Communist ideology and now it has been proven that it is an unsuccessful political ideology.

    The ideology of the LTTE was racism. It tried to create a mono-ethnic separate state on the basis of distorted historical facts.

    Both of the expressed causes of rebellions were mere eye washes, to cover up their real motives. It is true, there were conducive environments for them to grow, but those environments were created due to lack of economic development and of the poverty, they are now being addressed with the fast post war.economic development . Really there were no justifiable reasons for the expressed and popularized causes.

    Thanks!

  • wijayapala

    Dear sambar,

    May I remind you that what I have written is in the context…

    Unfortunately you are hardly in a position to lecture anyone about context when it is precisely the context of the threat faced by the SLA that you are ignoring. I could invoke your same context-less logic to argue that the Sinhala deaths in Mullaitivu in 1996 constituted genocide, by ignoring the context that the deaths took place during combat (well, except for the surrendered soldiers…).

    It is true that the LTTE took no prisoners in that Mullaitheevu operation (very unfortunate), but the gasoline story is a load of GOSL propaganda BS.

    So you have no problem when we similarly dismiss the “war crimes” allegations as a load of LTTE propaganda BS?

    In 2009 the LTTE did no corall the civilians but the brutality of the SLAF made them go with the LTTE.

    It is rather sad that you have so much to say when you know so little of what transpired. Here’s what D.B.S. Jeyaraj had to say in April 2009:

    “It was this writer who first wrote in another newspaper during the first week of August about the growing IDP predicament in the Wanni and urged the LTTE publicly to allow the people to leave saying “Let my People Go”.
    “This column reiterates that position and appeals to the LTTE that it must grant those among the wretched of the Wanni earth who want to leave Tiger territory, an opportunity to do so.
    The easiest way is for the LTTE to relax its controls and allow “exit” to those who want to move out to government areas.
    “The lack of care and concern displayed by this government to those civilians living in the arena of war deserves condemnation.
    “Likewise the callous conduct of the LTTE towards displaced Tamil civilians in the Wanni is reprehensible too.
    “IDP’s are entitled to the right of movement. They should be allowed to move to areas of safety if they want to do so.
    “While the government increases the burden on civilians in the name of security the LTTE adds to their woes in the name of liberation. The IDP’s are caught in the middle.
    “The UNHCR drafted guiding principles regarding IDP’s emphasise that the displaced be allowed freedom of movement. Principles 14 and 15 are particularly explicit on this aspect.
    The LTTE is violating the spirit and letter of UNHCR principles by restricting movement of IDP’s.

    http://dbsjeyaraj.com/dbsj/archives/380

    • sambar

      Dear Wijayapala,

      You are slipping!
      The ‘Sinhala deaths’ in Mullaitheevu were of Sinhalese fighting personal of the SL Armed Forces.
      The Tamils that were killed in the 10’s of thousands were Tamil CIVILIANS.

      DBS Jeyaraj is well known for his anti-LTTE sentiments.
      I would attach as much truth to what he says about the LTTE as I would to what the GOSL says.
      But he is a good writer, and his skill is in writing as if he has a front seat to all the action wherever and whenever it takes place. 🙂

      • wijayapala

        Dear sambar,

        The ‘Sinhala deaths’ in Mullaitheevu were of Sinhalese fighting personal of the SL Armed Forces.

        May I remind you that what I have written is in the context of discussing the number of Sinhalese killed by the LTTE. Just as you have brushed off that the LTTE was far more dangerous than the JVP and used Tamil civilians as human shields, I have likewise brushed off that the Sinhalese who died in Mullaitivu were soldiers. It is simply a matter of using sambar (with some rasam) logic! 😉

        The Tamils that were killed in the 10?s of thousands were Tamil CIVILIANS.

        And how many of that number was killed by the LTTE?

        I would attach as much truth to what he says about the LTTE as I would to what the GOSL says.

        Given your rather weak response, it comes to no surprise that you are so ignorant of what had transpired! Jeyaraj had predicted way back in August 2008 that there was going to be a humanitarian crisis when the SLA was closing in. Could you please show a single of your half-baked sources that made a similar prediction? Junior Vikatan perhaps?

        Do you believe that Prabakaran is still alive?

        Can you also explain why none of the pro-LTTE websites like Tamilnet even gave a hint to their brainless Eelamoid readership that the LTTE was losing the war?

  • wijayapala

    Dear yapa,

    Tamils in my view is a community which cannot think out of the box. They are not used to anything other than racist politics, all their political parties are based on their race alone. They never will be able even to peep through the window of their racial box to see the out side world. Their views are trapped in that outdated caste ridden discriminative tribal mentality. They never were able to think of the world without the Tamil bias. I should say in general Tamil mentality is a rouge mentality always looking for taking advantage deceiving others with false theories and false propaganda. their practice in Sri lanka has never been a fair play.

    In other words, not too different from Sinhala mentality?

    • yapa

      Dear wijayapala;

      I think Sinhalese are a bit better.

      Thanks!

      • wijayapala

        I think Sinhalese are a bit better.

        Is this another “over-heated” statement?

      • Dear wijayapala;

        ““I think Sinhalese are a bit better.”

        Is this another “over-heated” statement?”

        I believe, “Emotional Intelligence” is an essential component of realizing/understanding things in totality, in addition to the all accepted rationality. I do not put all my eggs in the “rationality basket” alone. I try my best to mobilize all the exploring tools in my endeavour of understanding things. I do not refuse non-modern methods like “spiritual Intelligence” even in my exercise. I am convinced that these alternative methods of realizing things are also effective and useful.

        So, I am not much disappointed for being over-heated as Krish observed. I still believe Sinhalese as a community is better than Tamils, though Sinhalese as individuals are good for nothing culprits in general. In contrast I believe Tamils as individuals are more of gentlemen and they as a community are a useless pack of rogues. This is my honest belief, I may be wrong.

        Thanks!

      • samabar

        But only a bit!? 🙂

      • wijayapala

        In contrast I believe Tamils as individuals are more of gentlemen and they as a community are a useless pack of rogues. This is my honest belief, I may be wrong.

        Thank you, samabar has been sharing his “honest beliefs” with us as well. I mentioned to him in another thread how much he reminds me of you.

      • But Dear wijayapala, you have much similarities to me. See wija/yapa/la.

        A=B, B=C, then wijayapala, isn’t A=C?, Ha! Ha!!

        Thanks!

    • yapa

      Yes, nothing more than a bit. If not why we have been quarreling this much?

  • sambar

    Dear Yapa,

    “50:50 demand, the demand of rouge “separate traditional homeland”, rogue original inhabitant theory, Mahawansa bashing, Dharmapala bashing”

    We have been over all this many times and you are still repeating the same things. It seems you are unable to let go of your cherished beliefs; it is you who must come out of your cocoon that cannot it seems be penetrated by facts or reason.

    To repeat once again:
    The ’50:50 demand’ was 50 for the Sinhalese and 50 for all the rest (Tamils, Muslims, Burghers and whoever else)

    Being critical of the Sinhala-Buddhist interpretations of the Mahavamsa is not Mahavamsa bashing. Being critical of Angarika Dharmapala’s thinking, being critical of Anagarika Dharmapala’s followers’ thinking, being critical of Mahinda Chintanaya and such like is not mindless bashing for the sake of it.
    It is about being careful, critical and rational!
    And if you think such rationality is manifestations of that peculiar Tamil behaviour, I hope that one day the Sinhalese (especially the unthinking Sinhala-Buddhists) will one day aspire to display the same manifestations. 🙂

    • Off the Cuff

      Dear Sambar,

      You wrote “To repeat once again: The ’50:50 demand’ was 50 for the Sinhalese and 50 for all the rest (Tamils, Muslims, Burghers and whoever else)”

      Every Democratic government in the World, that has it’s representatives elected by the people, follows the principle of one person one vote with equal weight to each vote.

      Does the 50:50 demand use the above system or a twisted UNDEMOCRATIC system that corrupts the above principle?