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2013 Top 20: Our Most Popular Posts of the Year

Photo courtesy Vikalpa The 20 most read posts on Groundviews over the course of 2013. Numbers in italics indicate pageviews since the article was published, accurate at the time of publication. CHOGM 2013: A lie well told 14,463  Coercive Population Control in Kilinochchi 13,476  Mohammed Irshad’s story and the banality of violence in the Rajapaksa […]

The rule of tyranny and the Reign of God: A Christmas Reflection

Image courtesy Riversoft Partnerships in tyranny Jesus was born under the rule of tyranny. Absolute power was held by the Roman Emperor who ruled conquered regions through local agents. Herod was one such agent. So long as he ensured that Roman supremacy and interests were not challenged in Judea and the Roman coffers were filled; […]

Nelson Mandela: Terrorist turned Santa Claus or Liberator of the Oppressed?

Photo by Adrian Steirn/Nelson Mandela Foundation/Getty Images via Huffington Post Despite his lifelong commitment to Non-Violence (except briefly against unmanned institutions such as power stations) Mandela was proclaimed a Terrorist by President Reagan, and remained on the Terrorist Watch List under successive Presidents till 2008. Mandela was released from prison in 1990, won the Nobel […]

A letter to President Rajapakse from Nelson Mandela

Mahinda Rajapaksa paying his last respects to the remains of the former South African President late Nelson Mandela. Photo via official Twitter feed.  Dear Mahinda Rajapakse, At the outset , I would like to tell you one thing. I regret very much that we have never met and not had the opportunity to share our […]

Chief Minister Wigneswaran alleges genocide, calls for plebiscite

Photograph courtesy The Independent Mr Akashi was absolutely right when he urged flexibility and reform on the Sri Lankan government and sounded the alarm of serious consequences in Geneva March 2014 (that’s 75 days away, folks) if it failed to shift in the right direction. He did get one thing wrong though. There is neither a […]

‘Census on human and property damages due to conflict’: Critical points, translation & scanned version

The Census on human and property damages due to conflict – 2013, which began data collection last week is one of the key recommendations in the Lessons Learnt and Reconciliation Commission report. According to a statement by the Department of Census and Statistics “The responsibility to conduct a Census to assess the human and property […]

A Call for Accountability: Death of a Young Woman in Kilinochchi

On November 28, 2013 a pregnant mother from Malaiyalapuram North[1] (Malaiyalapuram) in Kilinochchi District died at Jaffna Teaching Hospital. She was 17 and 2/7 weeks pregnant at the time of her death. She had been injected with Jadelle,[2] a Progestogen-only subdermal implant (PODSI), [3] on September 07, 2013.[4] The deceased – Ms. Manjula Satheeshkumar – […]

Correcting Hudson’s Crooked Political Vision

Image courtesy Business Today On the 4th of November 2013 I was contacted by many friends and relatives urging me to listen to Hudson Samarasinghe’s radio program on a state radio channel. I normally don’t listen to Hudson’s program because I perceive it to be low grade cheap propaganda by a producer who has self […]

CHOGM 2013: A lie well told

Photo by Lakruwan Wanniarachchi, AFP/Getty Images via FT Photo Diary I imagine that beneath the cordial smiles and exchange of pleasantries there is much weeping and gnashing of teeth taking place at Temple Trees these days. The façade that was CHOGM 2013 seems to have crumbled, at least in the eyes of the world, although certainly […]

An economy that unites, reconciliation that divides in Sri Lanka

Photo courtesy Vikalpa There are some issues that divide Sri Lankans and there are some issues that unite Sri Lankans. While the cost of living, unemployment and education bring the opinions of the four main communities together, topics such as reconciliation and identity continue to divide. On the economy, the cost of living is what […]

Message to Commonwealth leaders: Stand up for Sri Lanka’s media

Photo courtesy Vikalpa Editors note: Earlier this year, I was asked to give a presentation on the post-war media landscape in Sri Lanka at the 20th World Editors Forum in Bangkok, Thailand. When subsequently put online, the presentation was viewed by thousands. Sri Lanka’s media continues to be at risk. As The Economist on 9th […]

Mohammed Irshad’s story and the banality of violence in the Rajapaksa regime

[Editors note: Also read I’m not mad to tie myself to a tree by the author, which appeared in the Ceylon Today newspaper.] Giving up a pensionable government job as a Samurdhi animator, Mohammed Irshad fled Sri Lanka began work as a bakery employee in Saudi Arabia. This is his story. Mohammed Irshad’s name may […]