5 October, 2023

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Channel 4 Resurrects Easter Sunday & Exposes A Web Of Political Crimes 

By Rajan Philips

Rajan Philips

Channel 4 has resurrected Easter and divided the political waters. Like Moses leading the Israelites through the divided waters of the Red Sea, Cardinal Malcolm Ranjith is leading his faithful through the divided political waters of the country. Without taking a position on the Channe 4 documentary, the Cardinal has hit the nail on the head by calling for a “free, impartial, just, transparent and broad based investigation” into Channel 4 revelations by “an independent international investigation team”. At the same time, Cardinal Malcolm Ranjith has confirmed his willingness “to forgive the perpetrators of the Easter Sunday attacks if they accept responsibility and repent,” emulating the Truth and Reconciliation experience in South Africa. 

Forgiving is core to transitional justice, just as remembering and commemorating is an essential part of healing for the victims of injustice. Covering up crimes, on the other hand, is to perpetuate injustice and to reward those who wrong at the expense of those who have been wronged. In instances of political crimes, grievously wronged. While enough is being said about the veracity, or otherwise, of the Channel 4 Dispatches, the real consequence of Channel 4 goes beyond connecting the dots leading up to 2019 Easter Sunday. 

What has been brought into sudden relief is the whole web of crimes from the murder of Lasantha Wickrematunge to the massacres of Easter Sunday. You can extend the web before and after – to the murder of Kumar Ponnambalam literally at the turn of the millennium, to the killing of Dinesh Shaffter less than a year ago. On the former, a government lawyer actually said in court that the case file had gone missing. On the latter, the police are still trying to officially figure out how Mr. Shaffter died, even though everyone who knows about the case knows how he died. In between lies a whole web of unsolved crimes, scot-free criminals, and well-protected masterminds. Channel 4 has ripped open a whole can of squirming worms. Closing the can seems to be finally becoming an impossible task. 

Put another way, Channel 4 has provided a broad wraparound encompassing all the political crimes of this century,  their perpetrators, and the state’s unwillingness to solve any of them. The state may never officially identify, indict or convict any of the perpetrators, but it cannot censor the public identification of the perpetrators or eliminate them from public suspicion. None of the ‘inquiries’ that have been conducted so far have been conclusive. Channel 4 reinforces the need for one or more of them.  

Cover-up Politics

Gotabaya Rajapaksa jumped the gun in rushing to his own defense with a silly statement under a sillier signature as the Seventh Executive President (who on earth will sign like this except the organic man). His still faithful loyalists came out to join him thinking that the tide had begun to turn. It has, but the other way around. Channel 4 skeptics and establishment minnows are being drowned out by calls for an international inquiry in one form or another. Even Maithripala Sirisena and Namal Rajapaksa are for it. Erstwhile (Mahinda) Rajapaksa loyalists are letting themselves off the leash and are going on a tear for Gota. There is even a new political explanation for the Easter bombings. It was not so much to win the presidential election as it was to secure the family nomination as a presidential candidate. It is turning out to be Gota vs. the Rest – of the family, that is, not necessarily the country.   

In Geneva, Ambassador Himalee Arunatilaka (a career diplomat, finally displacing the guest artist that Gotabaya sent to UNHRC) is doing the thankless job of insisting that extensive and comprehensive investigations have been carried out by the government with the assistance of the Australian Federal Police, the FBI of the United States and INTERPOL. But she knows what all informed Sri Lankans and those listening to her in Geneva know. They know that nothing by way of the whole truth has come out of these investigations to conclusively indicate who knew and did what and when. 

The Supreme Court ruling has become a convenient red herring for Gota apologists. The Court ruling was on a Fundamental Rights application against those in power for their dereliction of duty. It is not the last word on who conspired with whom to cause what happened on Easter Sunday. Nor does what is reported as 79 indictments so far answers the question whether there was mastermind pulling strings behind the bombings. 

President Wickremesinghe is reported to have told his cabinet that the Channel 4 documentary does not concern the government and it would be up to the individuals concerned by it to decide to respond or not. That position did not last long, so he announced another Parliamentary Committee hearing, and to top it up with yet a different committee headed by a former Supreme Court Judge. 

The Catholic Church has rejected it. What is coming out loud and clear is that the Channel 4 revelations deserve to be investigated, with credible international presence or observation. No one is buying the establishment line, which is also the Gota line, that there has been enough investigation and inquiry already. No one believes that the Easter attacks were the result of some spontaneous eruption of Islamic Fundamentalism. The concern goes beyond Easter, and includes all the political crimes before and after. 

Political Violence and Political Crimes

Sri Lanka’s web of political crimes should not be viewed in isolation from the fields of killing that Sri Lanka suffered during the JVP insurrection and the LTTE ‘war’. Both spates of violence included numerous and inexcusable individual killings. Yet there are differences between political violence of the past and the political crimes that have been multiplying even after political violence was ended. The last decades of the 20th century were engulfed in political violence. The early decades of this century are being marred by political crimes. 

The JVP is now reborn and is now recognized as an agent of hope within the political system – quite a world apart from its earlier role as an agent of disruption against the system. The LTTE violence is now history, but its legacy continues in the politics over reconciliation and its absence might be felt by some in the harassments of Tamils and Muslims in the North and East under cover of pseudo Archaeology. Even though political violence has ended, the culture of violence it created and the resources of violence it amassed have facilitated the emergence of political crimes and their continuation.

A characteristic of political violence, whether it was JVP or LTTE, was that it was not conducted in the interests of political families or for electoral gains of political families or organizations. I am not suggesting this characteristic is a redeeming feature of violence, or a justification for it. Only to contrast with the web of political crimes that has now become a fact of life, and which involves the interests of one or more political families. Some are more prominent at the national level; others rule the roost at the local levels without national notoriety. 

While contrasting political violence and political crimes, it is also possible to see the 2019 Easter Sunday tragedies as a coming together of the two. Quite literally, the web of allegations has brought together those who were active in the political violence of the LTTE and those who were spearheading the violence of the state against the LTTE. The specific intersection of the Rajapaksa family and LTTE renegades started long before 2019 Easter Sunday and has been continuing since. The linkage between them that is now alleged by Channel 4 was quite definitively exposed by Amnesty International over what it called the “the collapse of Joseph Pararajasingham murder case.” 

That was when S. Chandrakanthan (aka Plillayan) was acquitted along with four others in the 2005 assassination of TNA MP Joseph Pararajasingham, who was killed while attending Christmas Mass at the Batticaloa Cathedral. Following the controversial acquittal, the Attorney General announced that he would be dropping the charges against the suspects. Mr. Chandrakanthan has since become an MP and is now a State Minister. He is not the only one enabled by the Rajapaksas to overcome murder conviction and enter parliament. Premlal Jayasekara from the Ratnapura District is another such beneficiary. And the two men represent not the cover up of crimes but the celebration of them by parliament itself, which was once “the supreme instrument of state power.”

What Channel 4 has unintentionally done is to disrupt the process of normalization of crimes, and the acquiescence of Sri Lankan society to get on with life while turning a blind eye to the perpetration of political crimes and their cover up. Those who rush to question the veracity of Channel 4 revelations, should also pause to reflect on the unanswered questions surrounding so many individual killings, everyone of them involving the politically powerful. The debate over Channel 4 has brought to surface the moral contradictions of Sri Lankan society. And the debate has taken a new turn.

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Latest comments

  • 6
    0

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tht_lrQrhyo&t=323s

    With so much information available why no action taken. What else is Ranil trying to know through a three member committee? This committee cannot take legal action so who is he trying to fool wasting money and time.

  • 7
    2

    “What else is Ranil trying to know through a three member committee? “
    He thinks it is enough to pay back to his employer Gota Rajapaksa to become the next President? He may be right becaused he is an expert on handling such situations successfully for Rajapakasa family and Sinhala Buddhist Fundamentalism.

    • 4
      0

      “Like Moses leading the Israelites through the divided waters of the Red Sea, Cardinal Malcolm Ranjith is leading his faithful through the divided political waters of the country. “
      I don’t think the man deserves such praise. Isn’t this the same guy who went to Geneva to support the Rajapaksas against an earlier C4 documentary?
      Moses must be rolling in his grave.

      • 8
        0

        “That was when S. Chandrakanthan (aka Plillayan) was acquitted along with four others in the 2005 assassination of TNA MP Joseph Pararajasingham, who was killed while attending Christmas Mass at the Batticaloa Cathedral.”
        The fact that the Cardinal says nothing about this shows his shameless partiality towards the Rajapaksas.

      • 5
        0

        I agree with old codger: If you listen to his speeches then and now its a 360 turn.
        One thing that worries me is that this could also split the roman catholic church.
        Cardinal Malcolm Ranjith is only the bishop of Colombo. When people in the North and East were suffering, even loosing some priests and sisters who are still not accounted for Cardinal was silent.
        Knowing Ranil he is going to use this and approach the Bishops of North and East his benefits for the people. Those Bishops don’t owe nothing to Cardinal Ranjith Malcolm. They might stand with Ranil if it serves the local population because that is what the Cardinal did when it served the Sinhala population.

  • 9
    0

    Thanks Bert, I have watched the video. He has revealed lot more than C4 did about the massacre architected by Medamulana dogs.
    .
    Since the people’s collectivity (various forces emerged from the society against rebels) under Mahinda Rajapaksa’s political terms swept aside the rebels in the north in May 2009, Rajapaksa used the epistropin or raw rhetoric in Sinhala of such false talents of propagandists such as Wimal Weerawansa and harlot-like rhetorical monks.

    Ironically, even today the Sri Lankan media does not seem to have corrected their mistake, instead they behave no differently than the Malecha Rajapaksa’s. Nor have buddhist monks set examples before the nation. Instead, such buddhist monks hide behind the curtain yet today, not having corrected their grandeur mistake which misled the very nation in the post war period.

    Remember, the son of a bitch, Weerawansa compared Mahinda Rajapaksa, Gota’s brother with Mohateer Mohammed, Gota as LQU to distort the ignorant and ignorant mentality which is the decisive voting factor in the last elections in Sri Lanka.

    TBC

  • 8
    0

    cont.
    .
    This was misinterpreted by the media biased towards Rajapaksa’s power and weight. This was the beginning of the disastrous end of society, which is now torn apart as nothing can help simply repair it.

    Selfish artists (incl. the one now in death bed through karmic retribution agenda- Jackson Anthony), Buddhist priests (better to name them fake-monk prostitutes) and media fraudsters made it more attractive. This false medicine was easily swallowed or given to the powerful by the media spectacle of the ignorant Rajapaksa bastards. That was the beginning of the end.

    Sinhala public rhetoric severely distorted society. This becomes clearer if you, the rational thinkers, pay attention to the ideas that accumulate in a cross-section of society. I think you should study them as an emerging index to understand the truth of society. Please follow ” youtube comments”.

    • 9
      0

      Dear LM: I am glad that you have watched that video presented by “Mee Messo”. There are a few more of these by Srilal Priyantha of “Ethalaya Channel” revealing and backed by authentic documentary evidence relating to the “Rajapakse Rogues”. I have SAVED all those and already my “Kadamandiya” bureau has seen them.

      Unfortunately for the Sri Lankans these “ROGUES” cannot be captured, punished, and recouped the “LOOT” because they – the Rajapakses, saw to it that the “FORTUNE WHEEL” turned and stopped in their “LUCK’S WAY” by bringing in another “Friend-in-Need”- Ranil W to PROTECT the “Clan”. Now another such “Protective Cover” is the appointment of a “Committee” on Channel 4. OHOMA YANG!

      • 5
        0

        Dear Douglas,
        .
        Thanks for your comment. A few days before Bert added above video , I added it to CT readers. I listened carefully to that content.
        :
        I am very much concerned about these issues, that now come up more and more, however, I wonder how can anyone keep faith on our CID officers ?
        :
        What happened to that Nisshanka Senadhipathi today ? He acted as the number one secret contact to former President Gotabaya, is not that so ? was that no similar to STASI connections to Hitler ?

        Btw, If you can please help SINHALA_MAN or the like pseudo- educated idiots be encouarged to use the their brains. That will help for sure in rebuilding the nation.
        For only reason that I often stand against former JVP rebells, he calls me an ” ass ” today. However a man who dares to call ” sinhala man” but knowing no ample sinhala, is highly questionable to me.. We should look at the man with some sympathy since he is trying to kill his time, being capsuled in Bandarawella. Lone wolf, so pathetic.

        • 4
          2

          Dear LM: Thanks. Do you remember what the Minister of Justice Wijedasa Rajapakse said? He said: So long as I am the Minister of Justice I will not allow Rajapakses to be arrested. What made him say that? He was and is the “Right Hand” man of Nissanka Senadipathi. This “Bond” between Wijedasa and Senadipathi dates back years and years. I hope you have seen the pictures of Wijedasa and their family being in the company of the Senadipathi family on a foreign tour enjoying a boat ride. That picture was produced in Parliament and went viral on social media. Do you think that Ranil doesn’t know all that? “Mun Okkoma Yaaluvo Malli”

          I don’t agree with you or any other person making use of this media space to air out personal animosity against another commentator. I don’t know why CT doesn’t edit such content. That doesn’t speak to one’s good morality. My advice: Please don’t wash dirty linen in public. Thanks.

          • 4
            0

            Douglas, thanks but your problem is that you are partial to Sinhala man. You have not objected to him calling me an ass, despicable etc., no matter what I or others say, you object to him only when I raise the issue is the hatred with him. He is a senior person and needs to learn how to behave in CT. Just because I live outside the country doesn’t mean I’m pro-white. It is from this madman that a man who introduces himself a non-racial uses words like “we Sinhalese” and “they the whites”. I am tired of his kind of comments.. My kind request to you was that you, as his friend, to show him the way. If he has not learned it in his mid-70s, when would he ever learn to respect others?????
            I have more respect for “SJ”, “NV” ” OC” ´, “You” and all, even though I repeat that most of our people are stupider than they appear.. He should not have the right to call me “an ass” just because I stand against the JVP even today. He should grow up.

            • 2
              0

              Dear LM: Thanks. I would have definitely missed his address to you “Ass”. If not I would have definitely aired my opinion against it and said the same comment I posted above.

              Please note I do not condone such a way of addressing anyone who makes a counter-comment. Having said that, I do come very hard on “Politicians” who are and still continue to mess around with the country’s wealth and resources.

              Even if someone calls you any name, the best way to respond is to be SILENT and IGNORE. I have very successfully used “Silence” and “Ignore” as weapons to shield myself from harm. Of course, that needs a lot of courage and self-discipline.

              May you be possessed of those two “Shields” backed with courage and discipline. Have a nice day!

            • 2
              0

              Douglas,
              I really don’t think you’re right. We can catch them and hang them if they are stationed as required by law and order. I know you also want to see them hanged, that is my wish,….that is our common wish… I will not give up my hopes. i see some signs at the end of the tunnel… If tourism takes off as some experts believe, things will be very positive for Sri Lankans in the near future. I have spoken to many affluent travelers who predict a better future for Sri Lanka in the coming years.
              Not only Wijedasa but also GLP (law professor, former vice-chancellor) is acting against his conscience. We can add several professorial titles that do the same, – their common denominator is that they are Sinhala. I’m ashamed.. I really am.
              .
              First things first. I believe, if our economy is shaped in a certain way, law and order will follow. Even most tribal people start thinking of change if their basic needs are addressed to some extent.#
              tbc

              • 1
                0

                cont.
                .
                Today, Sri Lankans dream of Romania when they look for jobs, but Western Europe today looks down on them. When they see Gypsies hanging around in Germany, France and Spain, they point to them and call them ugly Romanians. It’s kind of cliché, but it’s the truth about them.
                I know there are Romanians and Bulgarians living in some villages in Germany, and many don’t pass by those places because they are socially marginalized and less fortunate (like in our Ahikuntica tribe, if they are still there in SL).
                :
                Truly saying, I learned from the republics of the former Soviet Union that later became democracies, that they are the real candidates for democratisation. Now Bulgaria, Romania, Poland are all on the right track with their economies according to experts, because their basics (education, disipline, health, political literacy etc) were well maintained by communist ideaology long before the wall came down in the late 80’s.

  • 9
    0

    C4 reported on a whistle blower, who they thought was credible after their own investigation, therefore, a subject of interest to the public, particularly, those in SL. A professional reporter is impartial but reports facts to its audience to make up their own minds. If the facts are proved to be wrong, then the reporter loses credibility, & once lost, hard to restore. Accordingly, C4 would have done their homework before presenting the facts & gave the opportunity to the accusers to provide their side of the story. The govt. responded by promising a committee to investigate allegations & Sally responded by stating that he was not in the country at the time but failed to provide proof. Pilliyan & GR did not respond but GR refuted the allegations to the local media. I would expect any innocent person to vigorously challenge the accusations but all GR could do was to deny to the local media & his supporters, to discredit C4.
    Cont,

  • 9
    0

    Cont.
    Apparently, the Govt. is satisfied with the previous investigation involving the FBI, Interpol & the Australian police but, at least, the Catholic church, was not. BTW, did any aussies die for the Aussie police to get involved? Anyway, be as it may, there were other allegations about unsolved murders & disappearances of activists & reporters. Die hard ‘nationalists’, supporters of the Rajapakses, can blame the Tamil diaspora & biased reporting but are the people of SL in denial that these crimes happened & needs closure as well? Wouldn’t the accused welcome an impartial investigation to clear their good name?
    Justice is denied to many in SL but should we accept it as ‘normal’? Where do we draw the line & say enough?

    • 10
      0

      Rajan , thanks again for putting all facts in perspective. The good thing about Channel 4 is that “what was internal until now is internationalized so that our rogue governments cannot suppress , hide or distort anymore.

      • 6
        2

        Yes, chiv,
        .
        It’s sometimes convenient
        for us to hide facts. The results of revealing the truth are not always predictable, but it must be done.
        .
        Not one of ourselves (I refer here to all 22 million, or whatever, of our citizens) must be allowed to arrogate to himself the knowledge and the power to override the rights of even the humblest of our citizens.
        .
        All must be made known, and given our systems of governance etc (which can be changed following due process, and with a sense of responsibility), we must consult all citizens who are entitled to vote.

      • 7
        0

        Todays news, two supporters of former Minister were arrested over their underworld links. Police sources also said, former Minister is influencing high ranking police officials and politicians on behalf of Ganemulla Sanjeewa , head of underworld organized crime group, who was arrested recently at BIA, on his arrival from Nepal, with a forged passport.

        • 8
          0

          Rajan, says what channel 4 has unintentionally done is to disrupt the process of normalization of crimes and acquiescence of SriLankan society to get on with life while turning a blind eye to the perpetration of political crimes and their cover ups. Those who rush to question the veracity of C 4 revelations,(like the retard here ) should pause to reflect on unanswered questions surrounding so many individual killings, everyone of them involving the political powerful . The debate over C 4 has brought to surface moral contradictions of SriLankan society. Absolutely right and sensible. Not what enablers here say 1) If there is no positive outcome why find the real perpetrators ? ( forgetting the outcome of getting single digit support in Geneva) . 2) Lankans in general are immoral, there is no contradictions. They have denied, lied, enabled turned a blind eye and worse supported perpetrators in getting re-elected, so that they can continue committing more crimes. 3) Unidentified group of men opened fire at Auradhapura MPUddika’s vehicle There is already two version, a) SLPP diversion 2) Apparently he made a speech in parliament which didn’t go well with Mafia Family. Whereas Gagendran MP was attacked by organized goons in Trinco in the presence of Army / Police.

  • 2
    8

    Rajan
    Your unassailable faith in the Cardinal is stunning!
    You say “Channel 4 has ripped open a whole can of squirming worms. Closing the can seems to be finally becoming an impossible task.”
    I remember Channel 4 ripping open other cans earlier, and you should remember the outcomes.
    There are other big questions that have not been raised willfully or otherwise.
    Some concern foreknowledge of the event.
    India could help if enabled to do so without exposing its informants.
    It was a tragedy that could have been avoided despite its comprehensive planning. Why was it not prevented. It is more than negligence on anyone’s part.
    How is that the ISIL’s role does not fare significantly in the story? Was the ISIL only a figment of imagination?
    All of these lead to the much bigger issue: were there no other players?

  • 8
    0

    “Channel 4 has no credibility – Dr. Wijeyadasa Rajapakshe”
    Based on what? It just cannot be the word of mouth of corrupt politicians. You still might have a hand full of fools to believe this but it does not cut it for the grater community or the international community.
    You might say who cares about international community,: you better care because that where you go begging.

    • 1
      9

      B
      Leaving aside the silly utterance of WR, do you seriously have faith in the “international community”?

      • 1
        5

        Honestly, I am puzzled as to how “international community” can expose the truth. Can someone help me understand please.

        Soma

        • 1
          0

          Poor Soma. I understand your confusion. Why don’t you explain and help us understand ” how Lankan community , which could not expose truth in 75 years, can somehow expose the truth “?

      • 7
        0

        Can international community serve justice? Good question, I still have faith that they can if not directly then indirectly. We have seen this in Iran, Iraq, Burma and even in China. At worst the international community could act as a deterrent to this happening in the future.

  • 10
    1

    This is failed state is governed by complete idiots, hence don’t expect anything positive to come out of all these sham investigations.

    • 4
      0

      Tamil from the north

      “This is failed state is governed by complete idiots, “

      The state is ruled by crooks, not idiots.
      Idiots are the ones who voted for crooks.

      How are you?
      Say hello to your Minister Gary Anandasangaree in case if Wimal, Udhaya, Dinesh, Namal, Gota, Mahinda, …… needs their asylum case expedited. They would never settle down in Communist countries.

      Ask SJ who is a Mao’s ***** carrier if he is prepared to live in China.
      The answer is no.
      Hypocrites.
      Take care.

  • 5
    0

    Cardinal has hit the nail on the head by calling for a “free, impartial, just, transparent and broad based investigation” into Channel 4 revelations by “an independent international investigation team”.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3PIwrit6MG0

    • 4
      0

      Channel 4 revelation of the murder of the Tamils at Mullivaikal and the the mothers tears did not prick Cardinal’s heart.In fact at that time he was against an international inquiry. Why?

    • 3
      0

      B
      I wish that he was as forthright on far worse matters in the past.
      He stood by the offender.

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