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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 […]

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 […]

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 […]

Vesak and Violence Against Women

Original photograph REUTERS/Damir Sagolj I have not hidden my increasing disdain for the way Buddhism is practiced and promoted in Sri Lanka. To say the least, we have not only forgotten what it is truly about, we often downright contradict and insult it. I wrote about it here, almost exactly a year ago, after the Poson […]

It is time to decide on Sri Lanka’s university system

The trade union action called by the Federation of University Teachers Association (FUTA), has once again highlighted the crisis in our universities. Unfortunately it is the strikes, the clashes and the protests that bring the universities to the news headline, and not their silent contributions to educating the youth and equipping them with skills and […]

Seminar on defeating terrorism: Sharing Sri Lanka’s experience

Original image from AFP | The Sydney Morning Herald The Sri Lanka defense establishment is organizing a counter-insurgency seminar from the 31st of May to 2nd of June 2011. It has invited over 50 countries for the seminar with a stated objective of sharing the Sri Lankan experience of successful counter insurgency operation against the LTTE. […]

How will Delhi listen to Jayalalithaa calling Rajapaksa a ‘war criminal’?

“Declare Rajapakse a war criminal: Jayalalithaa tells Centre” was a banner headline on 13 Friday in the “Indian Express”, following AIADMK leader Jayalalithaa’s march to victory, at the Tamil Nadu assembly elections concluded last week. No analyst expected the DMK-Congress alliance in TN to be so unmercifully smothered, at this elections. Never has the DMK […]

From draft to official text: Wikileaks reveals the US response to the end of war in Sri Lanka

The Norwegian newspaper Afterposten published on 7th May a cable from the Wikileaks tranche of US diplomatic cables (confidential briefings) dealing the US government’s response to the end of war in Sri Lanka. Wikileaks on Sri Lanka: A breakdown and implications was an in-depth account we exclusively published last year exploring the fallout of the so-called […]

Opposition to the UN Panel report: Any method to this madness?

There is obviously much confusion in official circles on what to do with the report of the panel appointed by the UN Secretary General to look into issues of accountability in Sri Lanka, which has flagged credible allegations of war crimes and crimes against humanity. As we flagged on our Twitter feed, the country’s foreign […]

Anti-UN sentiment in Jaffna: Fact or fiction?

The Uthayan newspaper runs a revealing story on its website which suggests that on 8th May, the campaign to collect a million signatures against the UN Panel’s report basically forced people to sign up to the campaign. Groundviews has already covered this bizarre, mindless campaign when it started in Colombo, before in fact the UN […]

From Haiti Hell: Perspectives from the ground a year after the earthquake

Words Hugh Bohane. Pictures Alison Thompson. Australian nurse, filmmaker and author Alison Thompson is making a name for herself, selflessly volunteering to help in dangerous global calamities, such as in the aftermath of the 2004 Asian Tsunami – and now in Haiti. When the Haiti earthquake struck in January 2010, her buddy, two-time Academy Award-winning […]

Proud of being a ‘half-caste': Perceptions of Eurasians in Sri Lanka

Although there were times when to be an Eurasian meant that one was generally looked down upon, considered ‘half caste’, Rosemarie is proud of her mixed heritage. At the time when she was growing up, Eurasians and Burghers saw themselves as being distinct and different from each other. Now, both communities are a rarity in […]

Osama Bin Laden and Sri Lanka’s WMD Moment

Image courtesy The killing of Osama Bin Laden by chopper-borne US Special forces and Navy Seals is good news and a job well done by that country. Shortly after the attack on the Twin Towers the Sri Lankan papers carried a piece I wrote entitled ‘Why Osama Ain’t My Hero’, a full-on critique of […]

Training for University Entrants in Army Camps and at District Level

Photo from Wikipedia The Ministry of Higher Education has decided to make compulsory for all university entrants a 3-week training in army camps (supposedly because they are the only places that can accommodate all the entrants) and then give them 3 months of training in English and Information Technology (IT) at District level. While the […]