Leader of the Opposition Ranil Wickremesinghe has stated that if national unity is to be obtained then the primacy of the law has to be protected. He has made the further point that the collapse of law and order has not only caused anxiety among Muslims and Tamils but has impacted everyone. He is correct. While Wickremesinghe has taken pains...
The Government has taken some tentative steps to keep NGOs in check. Although the big-names in the NGO fraternity have howled in protest, a careful reading of the directive issued by the NGO Secretariat clearly indicates that there’s been little more than reiteration of existing caveats pertaining to NGO activity.
Americans of the United States are familiar with the term ‘Pleading the fifth’. It refers to the 5th Amendment to the Constitution which, in popular understanding, gives witnesses the right to desist responding to questions if it was felt that the answer would contribute to self-incrimination. It has been used so often, in and out of court, that ‘pleading the
Humility is probably the most powerful propaganda tool around. It is also the least used, especially by politicians. This is why Opposition Leader Ranil Wickremesinghe should be applauded for acknowledging that his party erred in July 1983. He said that the then UNP government did not take adequate action to prevent the riots.
These are days of frayed tempers, perceived grievances, real threats and real fears that can cloud and blow away reason. This is the hour of the rumor-monger. This is the hour of the extremist. This is the hour of the passionate, the hour or the irrational.The word on the street is ‘Aluthgama’. Indeed it is the word on every street...
Some may believe that it was a masterstroke by the Government to go to Parliament with the issue of the team appointed by the UN High Commission for Human Rights. The ruling party has the number. Secondly, the opposition (barring the TNA of course) would be caught in a bind because if they oppose the Government’s position it would amount...
Sachithra Senanayake was booed each time he came up to bowl, each time he touched the ball. This is after he ‘Mankaded’ Jos Buttler. A lot has been said and written about the incident. There has been self-righteous indignation, there’s been ‘titting-for-tatting’ arguments and there has been sober reference to ICC laws.
It’s seasonal. Devolutionists have their ‘on’ days and ‘off’ days. There was a time way back in the early 1990s when Paikiasothy Saravanamuttu was scared to use the word ‘federal’. He called it ‘The F Word’. Then there came a time when those who were not impressed by the ‘F-Word’ were called war-mongers, hawks, Sinhala Buddhist extremists and other such
President Mahinda Rajapaksa did not invite seemingly estranged leaders of coalition partners such as Champika Ranawaka and Wimal Weerawansa to accompany him to the swearing-in ceremony of newly-elected Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi. He did not invite his Prime Minister or any other seniors in the Sri Lanka Freedom Party. He didn’t even invite the Leader of the Opposition,
The end of war means different things to different people. Those who count themselves among the ‘winners’ will naturally celebrate. Those who believe they lost, lament, quietly for the most part. Whichever camp one belongs to, there’s common relief on one matter: the end of gunfire and bomb explosion. Time passes and those with a political bent re-assess
If the week that just ended had a name, it is undoubtedly ‘Youth’ in view of the 15th World Conference on Youth held in Colombo. President Mahinda Rajapaksa, speaking at the inauguration of Conference called upon delegates from all parts of the globe not to subvert loyalty to their respective countries to any other interests. The President expressed these sentiments
Yesterday was World Press Freedom Day. It is a time for reflection about the status of these freedoms or their absence in Sri Lanka. In this age of Information, Sri Lankan journalists do not have the privilege of Freedom of Information legislation that would give access to information on important issues and mega projects.
A string of pearls doesn’t always refer to a necklace adorning a woman’s neck. These days it refers to a network of Chinese facilities/relationships along its sea lines of communication from China to Port Sudan. It’s a term tossed around by some who are concerned about growing Chinese influence around the world. Not surprisingly, the ‘concerned’ have their own ‘pearls’.
Eraj Ravindra Fernando is one heck of a politician. Following the incident in Hambantota where a set of UNP parliamentarians were attacked by a mob, Fernando, captured on camera with pistol in hand made a series of statements. First he said he didn’t have a gun and that he had come to protect the said parliamentarians. Then he said
President Mahinda Rajapaksa knows how to smile. Everyone knows this, even those who erroneously think that his biggest strength is his affable nature and the ease with which can interact with people from all walks of life. He can make a joke and he can take a joke. As is the case of all leaders he has had his share
As is now par for the course come Season Geneva the usual suspects in the Hang-Sri-Lanka bandwagon came up with self-labeled ‘damning’ evidence of atrocities committed by Sri Lankan security forces. Let’s not go there, for the lie is known to liar, lied to and lied about. Geneva is not about truth-falsehood, good-evil, justice-injustice or moral-immoral. It’s about power.
US Ambassador Michele Sison got it wrong. Addressing a media briefing following the UNHRC vote on Sri Lanka, Sison dismissed allegations that the US-backed resolution was ‘against’ Sri Lanka. In other words it was ‘for’ Sri Lanka, she implies. Now if the Government of Sri Lanka, which represents the people of Sri Lanka, thinks a resolution is ‘for’ the country,
There are road blocks again in the North. That’s an ominous sign. If the threat of terrorism is the reason, then let it be recognized, again, that terrorism is something that is never restricted to a particular territory. Road blocks have their purposes in terms of ensuring security of course. All countries have them. Borders, after all, are guarded. But
We live in a world where the Bible and Quran are used to justify anything and everything, a world where the teachings of the Buddha are (mis)interpreted to buttress political projects quite antithetical to the teachings of Siddhartha Gauthama and a world where the works of Karl Marx are mined for ‘appropriate’ quotes to support preferred political position. In such
Are there wars without witnesses? Technically, no. Some witnesses die with the knowledge. Some, i.e. those who for whatever reason escape ‘liberation’ from bomb and bullet, napalm and whatnot, live on. Some tell their stories, so do not. Some told-stories are dismissed and some are heard, half-believed or believed but swept over by the overwhelming nature of narratives privileged by