24 September, 2020

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Conjurers And Dupes

By Tisaranee Gunasekara

“We’ve got a gang of clueless bozos steering our ship of state right over a cliff…..” – Lee Iaccoca (Where Have All the Leaders Gone?)

The military court of inquiry into the Weliweriya shooting presented its report to the Army Commander on August 21st 2013. “The Court has prepared a comprehensive report….”[i] the army announced.

The Rajapaksas repeatedly assert that an international inquiry into alleged war crimes is unnecessary since Lankan laws and Lankan institutions are capable of delivering justice to Lankan victims.

The Rajapaksas repeatedly assert that an international inquiry into alleged war crimes is unnecessary since Lankan laws and Lankan institutions are capable of delivering justice to Lankan victims.

A week later the Army Commander suspended a Brigadier and there Lieutenant Colonels implicated in the Weliweriya killings. The military proclaimed that those who broke the military law will be court-martialled[ii].

The report was never made public. Still there was a sense in the Sinhala-South that (some) justice has been done.

This week the four suspended officers were quietly reinstated in new posts[iii].

So the much-publicised suspension was not justice but eyewash, a multi-purpose magic trick – a sop to the Sinhala-South, a riposte for Geneva and an olive branch to the Gampaha electorate in time for PC polls.

The Rajapaksas repeatedly assert that an international inquiry into alleged war crimes is unnecessary since Lankan laws and Lankan institutions are capable of delivering justice to Lankan victims. According to Gotabhaya Rajapaksa, “….in the course of a long and protracted war…there may have been a few individuals who were guilty of acting outside orders and committing crimes…. Government has always had strong mechanisms to deal with such individuals, and that the allegation that wrongdoers get away with impunity is completely wrong. The military…..has mechanisms to investigate and punish any soldiers or officers who violate those norms. These systems functioned smoothly before, during, and after the war…. It is important to bear in mind that general statements about civilian casualties do not suffice, but specific complaints supported by evidence need to be made….”[iv]

In Weliweriya, there were ‘specific complaints supported by evidence’. So the ‘mechanisms’ Mr. Rajapaksa boasts about should have succeeded in delivering justice. The report of the military court should have been made public and a court-martial should have been instituted. But the opposite happened. The alleged killers got their jobs back and impunity is regnant again.

If the much vaunted national mechanisms did not work for the Sinhala victims of Weliweriya how can they be expected to work for the Tamil victims of the war?

The impunity enjoyed by the Weliweriay suspects is in marked contrast to fate of the war-winning army commander; or the Military Intelligence officer who was assaulted by Mervyn Silva’s execrable son. In Rajapaksa Sri Lanka, only the Rajapaksas enjoy total, unconditional and permanent impunity; even the military does not. Any ‘war hero’ who falls foul of any Rajapaksa kith or kin will be hounded sans mercy.

In Weliweriya – as in the North – the killings happened not because there was a breakdown in discipline but because strict discipline was maintained and soldiers obeyed their orders. If there is a genuine inquiry, the truth about who ordered what in the North and in Weliweriya will come out. That is why the Rajapaksas will never allow a proper national inquiry into either case. One cannot reasonably expect the Siblings to place themselves in jeopardy.

So long as the Rajapaksas rule, there will never be any Lankan justice, either for Lankan (Sinhala) victims of Weliweriya or Lankan (Tamil) victims of the Fourth Eelam War.

Last week, the Attorney General ordered the courts to discharge two men accused of raping a mentally retarded woman in 2010. “The Court had earlier ordered a DNA test to be done because the woman….had subsequently given birth. The test has confirmed that the DNA of one of the suspects had matched with that of the child. Meanwhile the Attorney General had instructed the Magistrate to release the two suspects Susantha Vijitha Bandara and Dharmasiri Bandara from the case. The Attorney General had asked the court to inform him within 14 days of what action had been taken.”[v]

Why did the AG intervene, after the DNA test proved positive? Why was he in such an unseemly hurry to get the suspects released? Who ordered the AG to subvert justice?

Where is the Opposition?

In Rajapaksa Sri Lanka, impunity is a threat not just to the minorities/Rajapaksa opponents but to every Sinhalese who is not a Rajapaksa kith or a kin.

War-heroes, as a collective, are feted, almost to the point of reverence while many an individual ‘war-hero’ is nothing more than an expendable appendage, a labourer doing the job of minor municipal employees. Sinhala-Buddhists, as a collective, are privileged citizens, but in their individual capacity, they are almost as right-less and vulnerable to abuse and impunity as the minorities.

In Pinochet’s Chile, music was used as a backdrop for torture[vi]. In Rajapaksa Sri Lanka, patriotic sloganeering and Buddhist chanting are used as audio-visual-psychological façades to prevent the Sinhala South from understanding the true nature of Rajapaksa rule. The Motherland-Nation-Religion cacophony is an indispensable tool in the Rajapaksa efforts to dupe Sinhala-Buddhists into ignoring/denying their degradation from democratic citizens to right-less subjects.

The Lethal Conjuror

When President Rajapaksa mendaciously claimed that Muslims are attacked only in response to child rape, he seemed to have germinated a new meme.

This week, a Muslim-owned shop in Aluthgama was torched by a bunch of lay and ordained thugs, after accusing the owner’s brother of child molestation. Obviously the saffron mobsters are following in the august footsteps of their President.

On the one hand Rajapaksa pawns are periodically igniting anti-Muslim hysteria, to divert Sinhala-Buddhist minds from real life rice-and-curry issues. On the other hand the Rajapaksas are strengthening their relations with those Islamic rulers who share their inimical and dismissive approach to fundamental rights. President Rajapaksa makes regular state-visits to non-democratic Islamic states. His most recent destination was Bahrain where he was welcomed warmly and given a medal’[vii].

The regime is also planning to attract more Middle Eastern tourists, probably in the context of new travel warnings, including by friendly Australia[viii]. Which means any anti-Halal/Niqab hysteria is another sleight-of-hand to dupe Sinhala-Buddhists.

Bertrand Russell warned, “No man thinks sanely, when his self-esteem has suffered a mortal wound and those who deliberately humiliate a nation have only themselves to thank if it becomes a nation of lunatics”[ix]. Tamils were once law-abiding to the point of docility. Decades of injustice, pillaging and murder created a new antipodal reality. Are the Rajapaksas trying to push Lankan Muslims in the same homicidal/suicidal direction?

Soon after Hugo Chavez was elected President, he had an encounter with Gabriel Garcia Marquez. Mr. Marquez turned this encounter into a long essay, which ended with a question for the future: “While he moved off among his military escort and old friends, I shuddered at the thrill of having gladly travelled and talked with two contrary men. One to whom inveterate luck has offered the opportunity to save his country. And the other, a conjuror, who could go down in history as one more despot.”[x]

After almost nine years, there cannot be such doubts about President Rajapaksa. He is a conjuror and a despot, one who is injecting deadly viruses into the national bloodstream, to safeguard his dynastic project. The only doubt is: will Sinhala-South see through the illusion, before the cliff-top is reached?


[ii] “Meanwhile the Director Legal, who is the Chief Prosecutor of the Army, examines (sic) the report of the Court of Inquiry further and will order a Summary of Evidence against any person who has violated the Military Law as a preliminary step of prosecuting such people through a Court Marshal (sic)” http://www.dailymirror.lk/news/34632-weliweriya-incident-top-army-officers-relieved-from-their-posts.html

[iii] Lankadeepa – 9.5.2014

[iv] Text of special address by Secretary Defence and Urban Development, Gotabaya Rajapaksa at the workshop for Sri Lankan ambassadors and heads of missions conducted by the Ministry of External Affairs at Sri Lanka Military Academy in Diyatalawa – 10.7.2012

[v] Rape of Mentally Retarded Woman: Suspects Released – Manopriya Gunasekera – Daily Mirror – 9.5.2014

[ix] In Praise of Idleness

[x] The Enigma of Chavez

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Latest comments

  • 19
    0

    “If the much vaunted national mechanisms did not work for the Sinhala victims of Weliweriya how can they be expected to work for the Tamil victims of the war?”

    Thank you TG. Keep up the good work.

    • 5
      0

      By Tisaranee Gunasekara –

      “If the much vaunted national mechanisms did not work for the Sinhala victims of Weliweriya how can they be expected to work for the Tamil victims of the war?”

      In dictatorships ad with Mafioso, there are TWO Groups.

      1. Those who support the Family and Mafioso.

      2. Those who DO NOT support the Family and Mafioso.

      So, they are treated differently. The DO NOT FOLLOW EGALITARIANISM OR DEMOCRACY.

    • 5
      0

      Bravo Hats off to you Madam Thisaranee! Please translate and publish in Sinhala to educate the Sinhala Modayas… Better late than never!

    • 4
      0

      Tisaranee Gunasekara –

      “We’ve got a gang of clueless bozos steering our ship of state right over a cliff…..” – Lee Iaccoca (Where Have All the Leaders Gone?)

      Azath Salley claims phones of media heads, MPs wiretapped

      http://www.adaderana.lk/

    • 2
      0

      By Tisaranee Gunasekara,

      RE:Conjurers And Dupes

      Keep track of the little girls and boys. Make sure they are protected from the politicians, as there been a lot of ads news about the behavior of the politicians.

  • 5
    0

    We can’t thank you enough, TG.

    Can anyone help me please:
    I’m unable to find any weblink to the news on ”Rape of Mentally Retarded Woman: Suspects Released” – news media are wiping such news out as soon as they report, ie if they report at all.

    • 4
      0

      Paranoid Hambantota Clan is over-controlling the message.

      Cheers!

    • 0
      0

      This comment was removed by a moderator because it didn’t abide by our Comment policy.For more detail see our Comment policy https://www.colombotelegraph.com/index.php/comments-policy-2/

  • 5
    1

    President Rajapakse’s idea of possible legislations to making rapists marry their victims is an excelent one although opposed by many. We could start with the Kuliyapitiya case of raping a mentaly retarted lady where she has now given birth to the rapist’s baby.

    • 2
      7

      Fortunately we don’t believe every slanderous misquote we read in these posts.

      • 2
        6

        What the President really said:

        If two young adults under the age of 18 have consensual sex and have a child together, regarding it as ‘rape’ is draconian. They may be encouraged to marry for the sake of the child.

        But his enemies deliberately misquote him. That’s politics in Sri Lanka. They all do it.

        • 1
          0

          Paul, you maybe right….

          ….According to Section 363 (e) of the Penal Code as amended by Act, No. 22 of 1995, in cases where the girl is below the age of 16, sexual intercourse with consent also constitutes rape. Proof of the act of intercourse is sufficient to prove rape.

          In the case of Muslims, the law on statutory rape is not applicable to a person legally married under the age of 16 years who engages in sexual intercourse with her husband. Since the legal age of marriage is now 18 years for all Sri Lankans except Muslims, this exception is only applicable to Muslims…..

          :-)

        • 1
          1

          So the King is a new marriage broker too?

          What is the definition of Consent of one, under 16 ?

          Does parents can say anything about this?

          Who is going to encourage? Who will pay for that if marriage it go wrong?

      • 3
        0

        Paul,

        Not only that.

        This so called “misquote” proves beyond any doubt, how primitive people governing this country are.

        Cheers!

    • 6
      0

      Rover

      “President Rajapakse’s idea of possible legislations to making rapists marry their victims is an excelent one although opposed by many.”

      Marrying the rapist is a life long punishment (the rapist will continue to rape his victims within the legally binding arrangement, marriage) for the woman as if the rape itself was not enough for being a woman and a victim.

      All rapists irrespective of their race would welcome such arrangement, definitely they will enjoy it.

      • 0
        0

        Have you ever thought of looking at it from the rapist’s perspective. Having to marry a mentaly retarted woman? Won’t that be the ultimate punishment for his crime? (with all due respect to the mentaly retarted lady)

    • 3
      0

      Mr. President (a.k.a. Idi Mahin), does’nt this ring a bell! Please answer if you possibly can?

      • 1
        0

        When the bell rings partner says Mike Hunt, Mike Hunt ??

        • 1
          0

          Yes, it rhymes well, my c…, my c….!! LOL

  • 4
    0

    As promised by the military authorities, the suspension of the accused officers should have been followed up with courts-marshal. Instead, the suspension has been revoked and those responsible for killing unarmed civilians quietly re-instated in new posts. What kind of punishment is that and what sort of justice is that?

    Gotabhaya Rajapaksa is talking through his bloody hat!

  • 4
    0

    Once again Kishali P-J has gently peeled away six-yards and stripped Mother Lanka bare, showing warts and all. Especially the warts. The fact we all recognise now is that we are being held to ransom by a bunch of opportunistic crooks and their hangers-on; thugs, time-servers and arse-lickers. This land has more than its fair share of educated and erudite, professional and smart, industrious and hard working, and all with one thing in common – none have the cojones to cut it in public life and influence the direction that our country is going from whence it will be bequeathed to our children. Where does this uber-subservience come from? We rightfully bend down, in the tradition of our communities, and worship our parents. Do we then overdo it? Bowing and scraping to every Mahinda, Mervyn and Maithripala. Is that what has infected our very subservient public behaviour – none willing to challenge and change, call out loud that the emperor hasn’t any clothes on. The pillars of our fourth estate are busily into self-preservation – always looking for that biting point where they can raise their sarongs to show some sort of defiance, yet not too much to incur the wrath of the ever vigilant regime – and happily accepting free laptops (and bending over in gratitude), accepting interest-free loans (and bending over ever so gratefully), enjoying slap-up breakfasts (and lying back and thinking of Sri Lanka). Another Sunday in Paradise – lovely? Look around; our once lauded judiciary, our once sound institutions of law and order, our once, ever-so-long-ago, respected Police force, have been bastardized to a shadow of their former selves. Civic considerations are nearly non-existent, families of the regime run around rampant thinking they own our country, impunity flourishes, the minorities destined by fate to share and enrich this land with us cower and look over their shoulders in fear. In short we are warm and smiling but completely fucked up. Thank You Kishali for laying it all out neatly in your article and let us hope that it will help us get a measure of our plight and spur us on to turn away, off from this road to hell.

  • 4
    0

    Reportedly,the ‘commission’ which inquired into the murders of 27 prisoners at Welikada Prison had been unable to agree on a verdict.
    There was speculation in the media that the “prisoners shot each other dead” using guns pilfered from the armoury.
    Earlier,soon after the murders,STF and police were mentioned as the perpetraters.
    This is another example of “official ‘justice'” in sri lanka.

    And now,the Weliweriya killers have got away with murder.

    The armed forces and police,are “sacred cows” who can get away with anything,including murder.
    They are protected by the “justice” system of the Military cum Police State known as sri lanka.

  • 3
    0

    TG, you are doing the work of the Opposition in Parliament! Thanks for
    that. Where is the BASL – should they not be issuing Statements at the
    least or have the victims side protesting the reinstatement of the Army Officers? The Sinhala intelligentsia is letting down its own community in the long-run.

    • 2
      0

      Punchinilame:
      You want to know where the BASL is while people like TG carry this battle to our national enemy? They are hiding in the same or an adjacent corner to Friday Forum, probably with security provided by Dialog!

  • 2
    0

    “When President Rajapaksa mendaciously claimed that Muslims are attacked only in response to child rape, he seemed to have germinated a new meme.”

    Well well well. Is the President saying it is OK to attack Buddhist temples when a child abuse occurs in a temple, which is about every day? Is is no secret that ‘abithayas’ or young acolytes are abused regularly in our temples though little of it comes to light because of fear.

  • 2
    0

    When a clique that goes as a Govt enthrones impunity as a rule to serve its immediate cause that always entails a price to be paid – sooner than later. Saddam Hussain thought he and his family will rule forever. Why should it be different in the case of the Rajapakse familial hierarchy?

    Backlash

  • 3
    0

    Tisaranee Gunasekara, I admire your writings. I have agreed with your opinion most of the time. More recently I have doubts whether it is correct to blame Mara The Evil One as the exclusive purveyor of evil, taking our beloved Motherland on the path of ruin and damnation. I cannot write as eloquently as you. Hope you may be able to do justice to these ideas in your future writings.

    Tisaranee look around yourself. Consider how many so called well bred, educated, cultured, persons of eminence are ready to exchange their very being (soul) for a few rupees and some worldly powers. Examples: Mohan Peiris, G.L.Peiris, Sarath Palitha Fernando. We see much top lapping, boot licking, and sycophanting among Buddhist Priests, Ministers, Parliamentarians, Lawyers, Judges, Civil Servants, Administrators, Bankers, Trade Union Leaders, Business Persons and Criminals. The reality is that anyone who is someone in Sri Lanka today is at least a sycophant. It is very sad that only exceptionally can you find someone take the just path with purpose.

    Such a wholesale betrayal will not be possible unless society as a whole have slipped off the righteous path. Since most of the misguided are said to be steeped in Buddhist tradition, said to be guided daily by the teachings of the Gautama Buddha, I think they may do well to take a step back, and ponder how they went so wrong.

    Mara The Evil One can do nothing to pervert Society if the members of Society are committed to lead a righteous life. It is for their guidance that I quote below what Aranhant Uppalavanna told Mara The Evil One, when he tried to distract her:

    Though a hundred thousand rogues
    Just like you might come here,
    I stir not a hair, I feel no terror;
    Even alone, Mara, I don’t fear you.
    I can make myself disappear
    Or I can enter inside your belly.
    I can stand between your eyebrows
    Yet you won’t catch a glimpse of me.
    I am the master of my own mind,
    The bases of power are well developed;
    I am freed from every kind of bondage,
    Therefore I don’t fear you, friend.

    • 1
      0

      “The reality is that anyone who is someone in Sri Lanka today is at least a sycophant. It is very sad that only exceptionally can you find someone take the just path with purpose.”

      The only ‘just path’ that anyone can take, in the present Political Climate is to leave the Country, if it is at all possible.

      The other sad option is to become a ‘Sycophant’, at least in the eyes of the Powers that be.

  • 0
    4

    UNP,FUTA, BASL, Cameron, Harper, US, and Ms Pillai have failed to rescue the “ship from the Buzos” and steer it into the Eelaam territory.

    Wonder why?.

    Are these” clueless Buzos” more clever than this nighty alliance.?.

    • 2
      0

      Tsunamisekera:
      [Edited out]
      Has your stipend been restored and some houses for you to dupe people with provided that you are back desecrating CT?

  • 4
    0

    Lankawata Tissarane Saranai !!!

  • 0
    0

    Muslims are known as supporters of UNP regimes in the past. But now more and more Muslims tend to support the present regime as their area business leaders for want of undue advantages get the innocent and little discerning Muslims to sup[port the regime.

    Muslims have a psycho of to be the leader of the community though they do not have the sufficient educational background.

    What you say is the end result and there is no one to save the community from this status of impunity that prevail under the new democracy

    The Lethal Conjuror

    When President Rajapaksa mendaciously claimed that Muslims are attacked only in response to child rape, he seemed to have germinated a new meme.

    This week, a Muslim-owned shop in Aluthgama was torched by a bunch of lay and ordained thugs, after accusing the owner’s brother of child molestation. Obviously the saffron mobsters are following in the august footsteps of their President.

    ALL THESE happen as the ruler (Not the elected one who is not ruling the country)who is backing the BBS like monks welcome this type of outcomes as it helps to muster more sinhala buddhist votes in the future elections.

    On the one hand Rajapaksa pawns are periodically igniting anti-Muslim hysteria, to divert Sinhala-Buddhist minds from real life rice-and-curry issues. On the other hand the Rajapaksas are strengthening their relations with those Islamic rulers who share their inimical and dismissive approach to fundamental rights. President Rajapaksa makes regular state-visits to non-democratic Islamic states. His most recent destination was Bahrain where he was welcomed warmly and given a medal’[vii].

    The regime is also planning to attract more Middle Eastern tourists, probably in the context of new travel warnings, including by friendly Australia[viii]. Which means any anti-Halal/Niqab hysteria is another sleight-of-hand to dupe Sinhala-Buddhists.

  • 1
    0

    CT – My comment has no relevance to this article.

    It appears a certain journal, with the exception of CT and AD, REFRAINS from publishing pseudonyms depicting the King and his family through fear psychosis. It is manifestly clear that the Rajafuckse’s are all out for the KILL!!

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