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Some thoughts on Sri Lanka’s Killing Fields: War Crimes Unpunished

Like so many diasporic Sri Lankans I watched it, even staying up late (by my currently low standards that is). Did I think that the first programme was a good thing? Yes. There’s a line, a quandary, a grey area after any conflictual situation. And it’s about what we should just put behind us and […]

Sri Lanka’s Killing Fields: War Crimes Unpunished: Unofficial video now online

Channel 4’s new documentary on Sri Lanka, Sri Lanka’s Killing Fields: War Crimes Unpunished aired for the first time in the UK last night. Before it is even available on Channel 4’s official web based on-demand service, it’s now up on YouTube. It is likely that the video is soon taken down by Youtube over […]

The Geopolitical Matrix of Sri Lanka’s Conflict

Image courtesy South Asia Monitor I am appreciative of the fact that this is a seminar on geopolitics. I think geopolitics has been underestimated; perhaps overestimated earlier and then there was a reaction, the pendulum swung too far in the other direction. I am not a geopolitical determinist. I do not believe that geography is […]

New censorship of SMS news in Sri Lanka

A fax issued by the Media Centre for National Security today commands that “any news related to National Security and Security Force, the Police should get prior approval from the Media Centre for National Security before dissemination. Therefore, please be kind enough to follow the above instructions with immediate effect.” See large image of the […]

Sri Lankan Post-War Cinema and Reconciliation

In any conflict environment, the audio-visual medium, in particular cinema, is utilized as a dominant tool of propaganda. In the Sri Lankan context, both the State and the LTTE have used the audio visual medium to differing degrees to propagate their ideologies, and to project themselves in a positive light. Cinema that is directly sponsored […]

Rights, Return & Resettlement: A Critique of the TNA Report on Resettlement

TNA delegation in Washington DC, 2011 The ‘Resettlement Report October- December 2011’, available on the Tamil National Alliance’s (TNA) temporary website, DBS Jeyraj’s blog and Sangam.org, is the second report of the Tamil National Alliance Research Series, and claims to provide an ‘overview of the return or resettlement of Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) who were […]

Women’s Day 2012: Concerns, challenges and opportunities from Sri Lanka

For years, Groundviews has featured content that probes gender from a Sri Lankan perspective. For Women’s Day 2012 we have created a Bundlr bundle of over 35 of the most compelling submissions. The content covers a range of issues, from the outrageous denial of the existence of rape by Sri Lanka’s witless Ambassador to the […]

Forging a Culture of Mutual Tolerance among Sri Lankans: A Path to Reconciliation?

Photo courtesy Reuters Alertnet “You have your way. I have my way. As for the right way, the correct way, and the only way, it does not exist” – Friedrich Nietzsche I recently learned that intervening in favor of a “[...] modernist, inclusive Sri Lankan nation that transcends narrow, parochial ethno-cultural identities” (cf. Asanga Welikela’s […]

Sri Lanka and its ‘Geneva-problem’

Maria Otero, US Under Secretary, Civilian Security, Democracy and Human Rights meets Gotabaya Rajapaksa, Secretary of Defence in February 2012. Photo courtesy Lanka Standard. The year 2009 was when the Western group of States at the UN Human Rights Council (UNHRC) made a serious diplomatic blunder, by attempting to pass a resolution against Sri Lanka. […]

GENEVA-II & FOUR-LEGGED FURNITURE

Photo courtesy The Star The US resolution at the UN HRC in Geneva has deepened the schisms in Sri Lankan society. That resolution will have the same polarising function as did the Ceasefire Agreement (CFA), in defining each political tendency in the popular mind for a while to come. The dominant elements of the centre-right […]

Why Sri Lanka must ‘win’ at UNHRC

Image courtesy Vikalpa from rally held in Colombo on Monday, 27th February. Unclear what the poster means, but the general thrust of it seems to gel with Chaminda’s submission. The following is an excerpt from a statement recently made by Ambassador Eileen Chambarlain Donahoe JD PhD, top US diplomat to the United Nations Human Rights Council […]

Five Precepts of Identifying a Sri Lankan Traitor

Image courtesy Transparency International Recently an air of nervousness has insinuated itself in to the Sri Lankan psyche. Doubt and uneasiness seem to be seeping like moisture through invisible social capillaries, carrying a message of treachery.  Evident is an alien concern; being branded foully on this island, which suddenly seems to have become a wellspring […]

JAYATISSA, JEYARAJ AND JACOBINISM: DEBATING ‘SRI LANKAN-NESS’ IN POST-WAR SRI LANKA

Photo courtesy Sri Lanka Guardian Much is being written nowadays about post-war Sri Lankan identity and the challenges of unity in diversity, among which are well-meaning interventions extolling the virtues of building a modernist, inclusive Sri Lankan nation that transcends narrow, parochial ethno-cultural identities. Given the fact that we completely and calamitously muffed the first […]

Thank you, Madam Navi Pillai

Photo courtesy JDS Thank you madam, for being the voice for the voiceless. The poverty stricken, wounded, displaced and marginalized Muslim and Tamil victims of the brutal thirty year war in our country have been forced into submission by the ruthless and racist Rajapakse regime which has gained a stranglehold over power through a deliberate […]

Youth unemployment in Sri Lanka: The foundations of violence?

In an interview broadcast on public TV recently, Dr. Harini Amarasuriya, Senior Lecturer, Department of Social Studies at the Open University of Sri Lanka and co-author of Rethinking the nexus between youth, unemployment and conflict – Perspectives from Sri Lanka looks into what is a real and growing problem in Sri Lanka – youth unemployment. […]