Barack Obama is livid. He is angry about unconfirmed reports (‘unconfirmed’ is the word used by the US-friendly British press) of Russian military movements inside Ukraine. Now, for the record, the area in the Ukraine that Obama is suddenly worried about, Crimea, happens to be the only Russian-majority region in that country and is the home of Russian’s Black Sea…
Last Thursday, Minister of Information Keheliya Rambukwella claimed that ‘friendly nations’ will move a counter-resolution to the one the US is to table at the UNHRC which, among other things, it is reported, would call for an international probe on alleged war crimes. Now if there are friendly nations whose friendship is so strong as to and who are powerful
A few weeks ago The Nation exclusively reported that Media Minister Keheliya Rambukwella or someone in his personal staff had benefited from an irregular transaction to the tune of Rs 3.3 million. A few days ago, while briefing the media on Cabinet decisions, a journalist asked the minister ‘whether the attacks launched on him by a ‘Government-controlled newspaper’
A hitherto unknown outfit (at least in Sri Lanka) that calls itself ‘Public Interest Advocacy Centre’ has made a very serious claim: ‘Mass graves may have been systematically destroyed by Sri Lankan security forces at the end of the island’s separatist conflict to hide evidence of large-scale civilian deaths’. The key word here is ‘may’.
For years the milk powder industry operated in a context where officials and consumers were blissfully ignorant about the possibility of contamination. Archaic labeling laws didn’t help either. There was a flutter of interest in the eighties when a newspaper took Nestle to task over contamination following the Chernobyl disaster, but complacency returned not too long thereafter.
The media loves Mervyn Silva (Doctor). The controversial minister (‘maverick’ to some) can always be counted on for a juicy quote even when he’s not doing his best to conjure up a juicy story for the media. Silva is back. He has been re-appointed as the ruling party’s Organizer of the Kelaniya electorate and few will doubt that he
There are all kinds of security issues. In the last three decades, the word ‘security’ was associated with protection from terrorist attacks. Today, territorial integrity is not threatened by terrorists. If at all, it comes under threat by Indian fishermen and trawlers. Sovereignty, on the other hand, can be compromised in many ways, in particular through trade regimes
The British monarchy is not what it was. Elizabeth is not Victoria. On the other hand, she has outlasted more than a dozen prime ministers, most of whose names few would remember today. She has, when considered fit, snubbed the high and might who rule in the name of the people. Royalty still has currency in that island. It is…
UNP General Secretary Tissa Attanayake claims that Sri Lanka has become a main drug distribution center in Asia and warns that it could soon become a center for the entire world. The dark predictions do have a tinge of exaggeration, understandable because Attanayake is in the Opposition. Understandable too is the fact that he keeps mum on the key role
The recent claim by a Director attached to the Accounts Division of the Department of Census and Statistics to the effect that he was asked by the Deputy Director-General to change the economic growth rate calculated by the Division (from 5.4% to 6.0%) has shocked one and all. He alleges that this was a directive of the Director-General.
The Archaeological Department has a splendid history. The work of the Department has gone a long way in tracing the history of this nation, piecing together the many story-strands, corroborating the narratives embedded in the less tangible such as folklore and those that are hotly contested such as the written word. Glorious as this history of excavation and scholarship is
Two days ago the Police Narcotics Bureau seized 10 kg of heroin from a house in Hikkaduwa following information furnished by a Liberian citizen arrested at the Bandaranaike International Airport. It is said to be the biggest ever heroin haul detected in the Southern Province. That’s a lot, yes, but still miniscule when compared with the 131 kg detected at…
The world’s most respected and loved elder statesman has passed on. Nelson Mandela for reasons that do not require elaboration was the one and only person who deserved the epithet ‘Global Citizen’; he did not belong to South Africa alone, he belonged to every continent, every country. He was grandfather, father and brother to the entire global family.
Bertold Brecht once wrote about the impact of continuing and escalating violence. At first, there is horror and protest, but as the violence continues and the number of victims grows, a strange silence covers all, he said. This country was forced to learn to live with violence for several decades. Two insurrections and a full blown armed conflict benumbed society
Now that the CHOGM circus is done, along with frills, clowns and performing monkeys, we can return to the man and country that had teased and taunted but in the end was hardly missed. That’s Manmohan Singh and India.India cannot wish away Sri Lanka and neither can Sri Lanka wish away India. That’s geography. That’s political reality. India
Once the final CHOGM document is released we will be in post-CHOGM Sri Lanka. The Commonwealth hasn’t changed much since it was formed and given realities it is unlikely that the Colombo Summit would see change in color, tone or substance. That’s no fault of the host or the participants; it is, as a wit put it, akin to an
There is a lot of irony in the Government mulling the setting up of a Truth Commission on the lines of the model adopted by post-apartheid South Africa just days after the Chairman of the Lessons Learnt and Reconciliation Commission (LLRC), former Attorney General C.R. De Silva passed away. The LLRC was maligned even before it began
Media freedom, like all freedoms, is not something one can talk about in absolutist language. There are always caveats. There are always conditions. There are lines imposed and there are limits that come from within, the latter kind being two fold, those birthed by fear and those that are spawned by ideological or political preferences.For all the rhetoric about absolute
If anyone has walked with eyes wide open around Bunker Hill, which is the business heart of Los Angeles, even as way back as the early nineties, the level of surveillance would have shocked. It is one of the most unfriendly places in the United States of America, according to those who study the politics of space. That was then.
Ex-judge C.V. Wigneswarn is now a politician. These are early days of his political career. Early days are typically made of words. Time will tell us more of ‘deed’ and the distance these have to rhetoric. We are not talking of the campaign rhetoric, which typically tends to gravitate to vote-getting imperatives. It is well known that manifestos are junked