We Are Resolved

Sri Lanka is small but the government thinks big, always has; since independence its growth rate in ministries and delegations the envy of Asia, and now defeat of the resolution the charge of 52 valiant diplomats whose arrack flows in hospitality suites at night, while mornings are spent chatting about contracts, coal-fired plants, fish meal, […]

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. […]

The Loss of Identity: Development and Agriculture

The ecological impact of increasing energy input into a system has been well documented.  In any ecosystem an increase in the flow of energy tends to organize and simplify that ecosystem, with the destruction of many homeostatic mechanisms of the original system.  The loss of the traditional, rice production systems and its simplification, being an […]

A Search for Identity: Tomorrow’s Sri Lankan!

Few are those who believe in the existence of what I would like to call a post-war Sri Lankan identity. Indeed, most of us will identify themselves according to their ethnicity, some according to their religion, beliefs and aspirations and some according to their country of birth. Yet, the fact is that we do not […]

Doing the wrong thing for the right reasons: Plagiarism and the fate of LTTE surrendees

Photo courtesy Deccan Chronicle When I first read Shamila’s piece posted on 24 February (Female ex-combatants of LTTE in post-war Sri Lanka), I had the strange feeling that I had read it before as it seemed very familiar. A moment later I realized that not only had I read it, I had actually written much […]

When a Prophet Speaks: Stephane Hessel on Sri Lanka

A prophet spoke at the UNESCO in Paris this week, though he joked that having lived for 90 years, he had written thirty pages and found he had been turned into ‘a rock star’. Stephane Hessel, born in Germany in the year of the Russian revolution, is 95 years old. Anti-Nazi Resistance fighter, concentration camp […]

In Memory of Marie Colvin

Photo via CBS News and courtesy AP Photo/Ivor Prickett Sunday Times “Journalists covering combat shoulder great responsibilities and face difficult choices. Sometimes they pay the ultimate price.” – Marie Colvin A few days ago, I was in a conversation with a fellow journalist and a human rights activist with regard to establishing an initiative in […]

History after the War: Challenges for Post War Reconciliation

[Editors note: Also listen to podcast by author here.] The end of the war is certainly not the end of the conflict that led to the military confrontation between the military forces of Sri Lanka state and the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE). This conflict surfaces in different guises, the military episode being only one. It […]

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