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An exclusive interview with Eastern Province Chief Minister Pillayan after the TMVP’s arms decommissioning

English transcript of an exclusive interview with the Eastern Province Chief Minister Sivanesathurai Chandrakanthan (alias Pillayan) conducted by Vikalpa. Have all the powers in the 13th amendment been given to the Provincial Councils? It is not possible to say that. It should have been implemented fully as soon as it was enacted. Unfortunately, the North […]

The farcical ‘National Action Plan for the Promotion and Protection of Human Rights’ in Sri Lanka

Exactly a year ago today, a week before the Royal-Thomian, the journalist J.S. Tissainayagam went into the TID to enquire after his friends who had been taken in for questioning the previous day, and promptly walked into a monstrous nightmare that continues to date. After months of agonising uncertainty and delay, roughshod abuse of process […]

It’s not cricket

“Ancient rulers of Sri Lanka built monuments established institutions to honour the philosophy of Buddhism. In turn this led to lesser folks following the principles advocated by Buddhism en masse.” Lankapuvath, National News Agency of Sri Lanka “I strongly believe that this country belongs to the Sinhalese but there are minority communities and we treat […]

None Other Than Mahinda Rajapaksha!

Lasantha Wickrematunga faced his last moments at an unusual time at an unusual place. From the moment he left home the day he was murdered, he was aware that he was being tailed. He informed his friends of this fact on the phone. One friend had advised him to immediately go to a safe place. […]

Architects of a military junta in Sri Lanka?

In this article, my objective is to focus on a crucial area of Sri Lankan political life, where significant developments have taken place: military successes against the LTTE coupled with the development of a culture of ruthless impunity. This can be described as the result of a mixture of very dangerous elements: 1.     Rise of […]

What undue humanitarian concerns? – Responding to Michael Roberts

Michael Roberts in an article published on Groundviews recently suggests that in the context of “an uncertain number of Tamil ‘civilians’ trapped within the beleaguered and shrinking LTTE territory…emotion and humanitarian concerns have eclipsed realism and factuality”.  Are humanitarian concerns ever undue?  In fact Michael’s position is lacking not only in ‘humanitarian concerns’ but also in […]

What’s wrong with Michael Roberts’ enthusiasm for a “knock-out blow?”

Vasantha Raja, Editor, www.lankaeye.com   After reading Michael Roberts’ “Dilemmas at wars end” and his subsequent “Clarifications & Counter-offensive” my curiosity above all was to find out what kind of logic could have led an academic of his calibre to end up in prescribing in effect to the world to be patient until the government’s Sinhala forces […]

Detailed response to Jeevan Thiagarajah’s ‘Settling conflicts after the war and doing what is right’

When I read Jeevan Thiagarajah’s piece published on Groundviews a few days ago several questions sprung to mind. Why is the article trying so desperately to be apolitical? How can we solve conflicts if we cannot even acknowledge that certain groups, i.e. the government, the LTTE, the paramilitaries, are responsible, in different ways, for the humanitarian […]

DILEMMAS AT WARS END: CLARIFICATIONS & COUNTER-OFFENSIVE

My essay DILEMMAS (note the plural) was also sent to a circle of friends and has appeared in other outlets, viz., http://sacrificialdevotionnetwork.wordpress.com and the Island, 11 February 2009. I thank all those who have provided cyber comments as well as email responses: both sets, as it happens, are quite polarised, with some highly critical and […]

A response to Michael Robert’s Dilemma at Wars End: Thoughts on Hard Realities

This is a response to Michael Robert’s article published on Groundviews recently titled Dilemma at Wars End: Thoughts on Hard Realities. I am disappointed that a historian of Dr Michael Roberts’ stature and humanitarian sensibility is seduced by the triumphalist rhetoric of the current Sri Lankan government. There are countless examples currently and in the historical […]

Rajapaksrized Chauvinism in Flowery prose: Sri Lankan Diplomat’s outright humiliation of Sri Lankan Tamils

This article concerns an article entitled “Tamils must sell something Sinhalese will be willing to buy at affordable price”, by Dr. Dayan Jayatilleka, an eminent Sri Lankan scholar, who is currently the Permanent Representative of the Democratic Socialist Republic of Sri Lanka to the United Nations in Geneva. The position occupied by Dr.Jayatilleka is one […]

The Anti-Conversion Bill violates the freedom of Conscience and the freedom of expression

There is a trend to convert the triumph of the Armed Forces over the LTTE in the north into a triumphal Sinhala-Buddhist ultra nationalism. Their ideology is that the country belongs only to the Sinhala Buddhists and that the other communities be they of different ethnicity or religion must live on the sufferance of the […]

To The Courts, In Remorse

Drop all charges against Tissanaiyagam. his glaucoma needs treatment and his wife will be grateful, …and the Dean of the Diplomatic Corps will feel less inclined to speak at public acts of grievance. I agree we must not interfere with funerals. leaves a bitter taste on the BBC’s tongue. Inevitably advisors will counsel banning that […]

From the ‘sole representative’ to the ‘sole alternative’: Justice for, and within the Tamil Community

With the position of spokesperson for, and sole representative of the Tamil community set to become vacant upon the projected defeat of the LTTE, one would hope that space would be created for the emergence of democratic, plural and dissenting Tamil voices within the community and the polity at large. However, the vacuum is most […]

Ashes at the Stake – For Lasantha

I remember the day I heard Richard was killed Almost twenty years ago. Far away in the diaspora I sat all night My back bent and still. Regimes shifted, People still disappeared into the night Witches, burnt at the stake A sacrifice, An offering.. In the name of the nation, Today I heard Lasatha was […]