4 December, 2020

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Fonseka Calls For Arab Spring-Style Uprising

By  –

Dean Nelson

General Sarath Fonseka, the former Sri Lankan army chief jailed for running as an opposition candidate, has declared he will lead an Arab Spring-style uprising to force the government from office.

Outlining his return to active politics after he was released from jail in May following pressure from the United States, Gen Fonseka sought to scotch speculation he had struck a deal with the government to keep a low political profile.

Instead he launched a bitter attack on President Rajapaksa, whom he accused of persecuting his family and terrorising opponents, and pledged a new campaign to topple his government. “I’m definitely asking people to rise up,” and “overthrow the government by democratic methods,” he said.

Speaking to The Daily Telegraph he denounced his former commander-in-chief as a “dictator” and called on the international community to “de-recognise” the government.

General Fonseka criticised British prime minister David Cameron for meeting President Rajapaksa at a Jubilee lunch in London last month and said the international community must instead isolate his government to stop its abuses.

“[They should] derecognise the government and give protection to the people…if there is a dictator violating human rights and the democracy of the people, I think the world will have to take care of that.

He cited a series of abuses by pro-government politicians including rapes and murders of opponents and pointed to an incident in February when police opened fire on a crowd of 5000 fishermen, including women and children, protesting against rising fuel prices. One fisherman was killed and three were wounded.

Two teenage girls were recently gang-raped by suspected pro-government figures while two members of the JVP which supported his presidential campaign were shot dead by motorcycle gunmen last month.

“You have seen how it took place in other countries and how those people were rescued from tyrannical regimes. I hope and pray it will not be like Libya,” he said.

Despite his family’s “sacrifices”, he said he was happy to be the figurehead of opposition.

“It’s a sacrifice I’m making in order to get freedom and democratic rights for the people of this country .They are sacrifices, but otherwise who will stand against the mal-practices of this government and those who control this country?” he said.

Despite being banned from standing for election for the next seven years, General Fonseka remains a popular hero in Sri Lanka for leading its armed forces to victory in its 27 year civil war with the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) in 2009. He was hailed by large crowds at rallies throughout the country but his popularity led to a rift with President Rajapaksa and his brother, the defence secretary Gotabaya.

Gen Fonseka said although the victory was not his alone, “I commanded the army to victory, I planned the operations and commanded the troops…I definitely feel proud,” he said.

He eventually resigned later that year and challenged Mahinda Rajapaksa in the 2010 presidential election. He was defeated in what he denounced as a rigged ballot and was later jailed for three years on corruption charges and stripped of his rank, medals and pension.

He spent the next two years in jail where he was held in solitary confinement “24 hours a day” and denied contact with other prisoners, he said. His son-in-law disappeared amid rumours that the government was seeking his arrest and has now been missing for two and a half years, while his wife was unable to rent or buy a home because government officials threatened potential sellers and landlords. “Now the intelligence bureau follow me wherever I go, even to weddings,” he said.

He dismissed allegations that Sri Lankan troops committed war crimes but criticised the government for failing to answer them fully. He was ready to face any accusations and denied his army had targeted civilians sheltering in a no-fire zone in the last stages of the war – estimates of civilians deaths range from 9,000 to 40,000.

Telegraph

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    Definitely, now from deep within the winter of our discontent, the Sri Lanka Spring is being born, as we speak..
    Even the Rain God has decided to show his displeasure at this barbaric Rajapakse regime, the monsoon has died, the earth is parched and dry and people are suffering. One look at today’s newspapers will show that the law breakers are ALL politicians, military and monks, who are stealing, raping and disappearing and insulting people.
    Let Sri Lanka be the first Asian country to follow the Arab Spring and thus become the ‘peoples wonder of Asia” – enough of the neoliberal and State led-Chinese capitalism development model that legitimizes the looting of public wealth by politicians and cronies, the dispossession of people and militarization of the Asia region by criminal political elites and dictators. SRI LANKA LEAD THE WAY! OFF WITH RAJAPASSES” HEAD!

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      Quite right, THE ROT STARTS AT THE TOP! those who are supposed to make and maintain the LAW are the people who are breaking the laws.
      People are fed up of this situation and are taking the law into their hands and attacking state representatives like the PHI who was attacked in Kantale because of the state of lawlessness. The Rajapakse Familiy – brothers and sons and their cronies and in laws doing military, sports and advertising and tourism business and murdering people who critcize them are the worst. Time indeed for Lanka’s Spring!

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        Fonseka talks big and has lot of ideas about democracy … But, he avoids in participating in PC polls … Why?
        He could have checked the validity of his claim – ‘people are with him’ – just by participating before starting the big SPRING in SL …
        All these ‘springs’ were initiated, planned in the WEST and executed in the countries with the help of the WEST … Look at the countries which are going through the forced ‘SPRING” … Are they better now than before? For example, western media avoids even publishing events unfolding in one SPRING country, Lybia …. Doesn’t the misery, these ‘spring’ countries going through now not enough to avoid the SPRING in SL at whatever cost? What a bunch of clowns to start talking about SPRING!

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      CD I always agree, but thinking the transition process, if UNPs Ranil Wickramasinghe has any brains he will get Fonseka to lead his campaign since the guy has the stature and seems to have matured during his time in prison, and is saying all the right things, while the UNP still remains unable to connect with the masses and has not got a compelling campaign. The JVP on the other hand has got a strong campaign with the argument that the soaring crime rate/ wave in Lanka today is related to the crashing economy at this time due to Rajapakse corruption which is quite true. Also distorted ethics.
      For Ranil and for citizens who fear dictatorship, Fonseka would be a great vote grabber now that he cannot run amok as he has been defanged given the 7 year ban on holding office. Thus this would be a match made in heaven for the Sri Lanka voter desperately seeking alternatives to the current barbaric rajapassa regime: UNP, TNA and General Fonny!

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        Good stuff Bond!
        Dinding the right EXIT STRATEGY for Rajapakse and his entourage is necessary to save Lanka from further violence – and this would work. A rainbow coalition to rid Lanka of Rajapakse and the racism JHU should also try to include the JVP that must be weaned off its racist colours…

    • 0
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      Kuvenige Sapaya – curse of Quveni is working on Rajapakse rregime..

  • 0
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    i don’t hope he never say “jayaveva” to people again on the way to nawaloka hospital with prison guards.

  • 0
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    The title of the article is incorrect. SF says he wants the people to overthrow the government democratically. What was democratic about the Arab Spring?

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      The Arab Spring is a peoples’ uprising and peoples’ power movements to get rid of highly militarized nepotistic dictatorships – such as exists in Lanka today, dumbo!
      In Egypt and Tunisia it worked more or less peacefully although some civilians were killed in the initial stages.
      In Libya and Syria the people’s resistance morphed into war with external parties chipping in, since the dictators kept using overwhelming force against unarmed civilians…

      Wonder which route Rajapakse, bros and sons and cronies will go! Wanna bet?

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        Arab Spring is how you understand democracy? Civilians were killed in the initial stages and still it is democracy? Unarmed civilians?? How did they fight against the armed forces? Did they blow hot air to kill the government supporters? Pal, we have a bad political setup that needs cleaning up. JR, Premadasa, CBK, Rajapakse, all had their fair share. If Rajapakse is replaced, only the name will be replaced but the smell and the taste of the chair will corrupt any replacement.

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          One definition of democracy, dodo, is: “government of the people by the people for the people”, so a peoples’ movement to topple a dictatorial government is a DEMOCRATIC. Learn the basics before talking nonsense!

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          “government of the people by the people for the people”

          As expressed by the people, Dinuk. According to your logic, China, Vietnam, Cuba, the Congo, Zimbabwe, Sudan, Libya, Iran, etc all must be thriving democracies since they were people’s movements that toppled dictatorships. Who really is talking nonsense here? Democracy is expressed through democratic means, and democratic means are centered in choice; not in mob rule.

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          Holy moly …man Dinuk, basics it is you need to know. So the mobs from Manchester carrying arms provided by British authorities, killing those who supported their newly turned enemy (former ally) was the democracy in Libya, in your little mind?

  • 0
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    Why the hell is Hirunika’s mother running to the President. Any Goverment Servant has to leave the official bungalow once he/she is not in the service. We also cannot understand how President give jobs to people just to keep the bungalow and a car. These are tax payers’money. I heard this for the first time.

    Cyril

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      His unique tactics are not clear to us but to the stupid masses in southern SL. You are right saying that Baratha family should return the official flat if the term is ended. But President he himself is trying to offer the widow a job is not understandable. This sort of behaviours from a head state is not seen in the history. But how long he will continue to do ?

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        Recall that the President is sheltering the murderer – brain dead Duminda and various other goons with the last name Silva. MR and this brother Gota the goon who appointed Duminda as monitoring MP for Defense have blood on their hands and hence are trying to buy off the widow now..

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    I have no confidence that any politician, from any party, will genuinely lead us, and NOT abuse their powers, especially for personal gain. The present regime is one of the worst we have had because of nepotism in great proportions, and every one of them treating this country as if it owes them all they illegally gain.
    Fonseka and his family, including his son in law, has had disturbing storing swelling around them, pointing to corruption and dishonesty, and no one knows what is true anymore.
    There is no viable candidate who can take over this country, if and when we get rid of the present scoundrels.

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    Do not underestimate arab spring. Their resistance was born from grassroot level, just to express in SL NGO terminology.

    In SL, especially MR supporters come from grassroot level and they are thugs, and do not have revolutionary ideas. They are ready to loot, to rob, to abduct to help MR. There is no constitutional democratical mindset. In a way MR made everything constitutional, democratical when he brought chief justice Shirani Ariyawasam under presidents commando and he is elected by majority. This present system in SL is legitime only if we do not have any minorities

    The worst developement in SL is, some self- proclaimed intellectuals like Vasudeva Nana, Dayan, Rajeeva ( not sure whether it is right to mention his bloody name under this list) protect this scruffy regime, which is not the case in arabian countries.

    This Sarath Fonseka does not know any democratical structures, he is a mild rebirth of MR or other ruthless politicians. He has to learn a lot. Discipline is what he knows, nothing else

    For us he is better than anyone else in present situation

    You guys can say this is normal in 3rd world countries, they are corrupted, this is not our west.

  • 0
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    Napoleon said that the role of a
    Leader is to give hope. Keep Rajapakse
    at least the semblance of hope is there
    with him and his goons. The other lot
    has not mucht to offer. Chinese backing
    Is better than yank poverty and European
    Bankruptcy. Hang in there old boy bring
    In more white vans and arm the monks

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    Arab spring comes from long yeras of tyrarry and fedul-medival system in Arabisn nation since end of Second world war.There is no capitalist democarcy in any of this region-country.Tribeibal system need to change,but not outside invading forces ,it should come from internal social forces of suffering massess and indigenous leadership of suffering nations.
    Mr S.Fonseka of ex-general have no political knowledge of Arabian history and politics as well as economy backround of relevnt countries and nations.
    All Arabian countries political developement and social progress are uneven; level of political-economy-social are differant form each other nations.Islam religion has domination factors and social forces and society has been control by state appratus and medival mode of operandi.The dual charcters of STATE and its goverance are back by Fedul lords of STATE RULARS and relion-Islam Mosque leaders as well.
    Nature of state is more complected,never allow to PRATICE DEMOCARACY PATTEN OF ORIDINARY LIFE FOR ARABIN CITIZANS.Women subject deprived rights by the MALE donimation society.Is quite natural social forces has to uprising own regime and move for change for NEW regime.OLD regime had been in power several centries Arabian countries.
    Ex-general has study and resaerch of modern politics-economy system island as well as Arabian coutries, if he permitted LEADER OF THE POLITICAL PARTY and happen to do politics in Island.
    Sorry to many present politicians are includuing EX-genaral looking in easy way-out to become Member of Parliament without basic reading of national and internationl politics.
    Hope and wish ex-genaral has go though hard learning of ongoing world order ,is important subject become Leader of Politiacl Party.I advice ex-genaral to read more on politicas of Sri lankan and world as much as possible.
    Arabin spring cannot apply to our island conditions are not SUITED.

  • 0
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    Here it comes. The first step of creating chaos and mayhem by the Western agents. Sri Lanka needs to be vigilant against fellows like this so-called journalist Dean Nelson whose primary objective is to create prejudice amongst Sri Lankans and the International community and thereafter add “fuel into fire”!

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