13 July, 2020

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Geo-Political Reality Bites

By Dharisha Bastians –

Dharisha Bastians

Late last week, increasingly influential hardline groups in the country rallied against the internationally-acclaimed TIME Magazine for its cover story featuring controversial Burmese monk Wirathu, whose 969 movement has been accused of provoking major anti-Muslim sentiment in Myanmar that has been rocked by riots and the deliberate targeting of Muslim communities in the predominantly Buddhist nation.

Wirathu’s rhetoric, calling on Buddhist Burmese citizens to boycott Muslim-owned shops and businesses and seeking legislation to restrict women from marrying Muslim men, finds resonance in the Islamophobia whipped up by political Buddhist groups operating freely in Sri Lanka, prompting hardliners in this country to spring to the defence of Wirathu being branded by TIME Magazine as the ‘Face of Buddhist Terror’.

Sri Lanka became only the second country in the world to ban the controversial edition of TIME on Tuesday (2), after the Government in Myanmar proscribed it last week. The move was a result of hectic lobbying on the part of the Bodu Bala Sena organisation that approached Media Ministry Secretary Charitha Herath and Defence Secretary Gotabaya Rajapaksa to get the ban enforced before the magazines hit newsstands this week.

Customs officials detained 4,000 copies of the offending magazine at the Bandaranaike International Airport, claiming it could hurt religious sentiments in the country. Sri Lanka Customs has authority to detain any publication that features content that could injure religious sensibilities in the island, the officials said, explaining why the distribution of the 1 July edition of TIME would never reach Sri Lankan subscribers. Senior Government officials will no doubt defend the move since the TIME cover story could be construed as an insult to Buddhism, which Sri Lanka’s Constitution seeks especially to protect.

Radicals

Except that the teachings of the Burmese monk Wirathu are not to be in any way confused with the pacifist philosophy preached by Siddhartha Gautama. Wirathu’s rhetoric is no more Buddhist than the hysterical railing against Muslim culture and food habits by groups like the Sinhala Ravaya, the Bodu Bala Sena and their ardent supporters.

These groups’ only claim to being protectors of the Dhamma lies in the fact that the chief proponents of their ideology are men in saffron robes, a cartel of radical priests that have learned to make the loudest noise and declare themselves the sole protectors of Sri Lankan Buddhism, decrying as traitor any member of the Sangha that dares to appeal for tolerance and peaceful coexistence between religious communities. The fact that Bodu Bala Sena regards Wirathu and his 969 movement as kin exposes the Sri Lankan movement’s agenda and the Burmese experience with its slaughter and displacement of Muslim populations raises a red flag about where the spread of ethno-religious hate speech and violence could lead.

The Rajapaksa regime has blocked publications at Customs several times before, when the offending foreign magazine featured a particularly critical article about the country’s ruling elite. Yet the ban on the 1 July edition of TIME marks the first time the Government has moved to block a publication over an article that does not directly relate to Sri Lanka even though it mentions the country’s hardline Buddhist groups and their gathering strength in passing. The Government’s swift move to ban the magazine not only speaks directly to the access enjoyed by groups like the Bodu Bala Sena and the powerful lobby they have become in terms of potential to drastically influence and control Government policy.

Media freedom issues ahead of CHOGM

Interestingly, the move to ban an international magazine that has generated much publicity already is a stark indicator of the deluge of media freedom, freedom of expression and freedom of dissent issues still plaguing the country three months ahead of a major Commonwealth Summit scheduled in Colombo.

Commonwealth Secretary General Kamalesh Sharma’s ‘optimism’ about Sri Lanka’s progress on reconciliation issues, attributed in part to the Commonwealth’s partnership and principle of engagement with the country, in some ways belies the situation on the ground in terms of the ruling regime’s adherence to democratic norms and core Commonwealth values. Even as the Secretary General expressed these sentiments, diplomatic circles were abuzz as doubts continued to mount about the Sri Lankan Government’s affording of access to some 1,300 foreign journalists expected to arrive in Colombo to cover the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM) in November.

President Mahinda Rajapaksa has appointed a CHOGM Media Committee that will oversee the logistical support provided to the hundreds of foreign press personnel that will converge on the capital before the summit is scheduled to officially open. Foreign journalists flying in for the event will be accredited by the CHOGM Secretariat, but the Sri Lankan authorities will still have to grant visas to these participants to permit them entry into the country.

The Rajapaksa regime continues to view the foreign media with intense suspicion, some sections of it more than others. This has raised concern in diplomatic circles in Commonwealth member states as to whether the country’s defence authorities in particular will firstly permit the entry of these ‘hostile’ media outfits into Sri Lanka and secondly, and more worryingly, whether these journalists will be monitored in any way once they arrive.

Britain’s Channel 4 and Australia’s ABC network will be among those media outfits high on the Government’s watch list. The Defence Ministry has denied entry to Channel 4 executives in the recent past, and while it may not have jurisdiction over visas in the case of accredited journalists covering CHOGM, there is little doubt that Channel 4 applications and personnel will be closely scrutinised upon arrival.

The international community’s fears for foreign journalists touring Sri Lanka during CHOGM are those the domestic media community in the country contend with on a daily basis. The practice of self-censorship, the subtle intimidation from the upper echelons of Government and the somewhat more transparent violence against the free press, as witnessed recently in the twin attacks on the Jaffna based Uthayan newspaper offices, paint a bleak picture of press freedom in the country.

Seeking to further boost its credentials as media oppressors, the Media Ministry recently announced it was drafting a ‘code of ethics’ for the media, to create a more responsible reporting environment. It may be argued that Sri Lanka’s press needs no further controls, given its bloody and violent recent past, but the Media Ministry headed by Minister Keheliya Rambukwella believe otherwise.

Ethics for politicos?

The idea of the ruling regime, notorious for corruption scandals, abuse of power and atrocious manipulation of the State-controlled media, preaching ethics to the free media would be incongruous enough if the Media Minister’s wayward offspring did not further reinforce the point with his antics on an aircraft cruising at 35,000 feet earlier this week. The Sri Lankan A Team Cricketer Ramith Rambukwella allegedly attempted to open a cabin door at cruising altitude, creating a sensation aboard the British Airways flight bound from St. Lucia in the Caribbean to London.

Sri Lanka Cricket, after initially refusing to name the cricketer, claimed Rambukwella junior had merely mistaken the cabin door for a toilet door due to the dim lighting in the aircraft. Initial reports said the cricketer had been intoxicated when he caused the commotion. Minister Rambukwella has meanwhile constantly maintained to journalists that his son “only occasionally drinks wine”. Sri Lanka Cricket claimed the cricketer had immediately apologised profusely to other passengers and cabin crew for the confusion. SLC has promised an inquiry, but only after the manager submits a report on the incident. Media personnel in Sri Lanka would wager anything that the young cricketer would be completely exonerated in any SLC inquiry into the matter.

A code of ethics for politicians and their offspring, they might say, might be the more timely and appropriate move, with journalists left to abide by the Editors Guild Code of Ethics for Journalists drafted by their peers. The Government’s code of ethics is being seen for the tool of suppression it is by most sections of the Sri Lankan press, especially after the regime also resurrected the draconian Sri Lanka Press Council Act and placed State-appointed arbiters to adjudicate on press complaints.

But the Sri Lankan Government’s record on press freedom is an open secret and one that could not have escaped the notice of the Commonwealth Secretariat and the CHOGM organisers, who have been preparing for a Colombo summit since 2011. It is learnt that Commonwealth officials and diplomats continue to engage in consultations with the Defence Ministry and the immigration authorities about ensuring the access of foreign media personnel and their safety once they arrive in Sri Lanka. Simply the fact that these ‘negotiations’ as it were about the freedom of movement and access for journalists covering the summit are necessary three months ahead of the summit, highlights how far from ideal Sri Lanka is as a choice for CHOGM, Government critics say. In fact, according to firebrand Opposition MP Mangala Samaraweera, if the Commonwealth fails to demand that Sri Lanka moves to strengthen democracy and rule of law in the run-up to the major November summit, the 54-member body will merely be rubber stamping what he has called an ‘emerging dictatorship’ in Asia.

Rubber-stamping

CHOGM is traditionally a platform for reiteration of the grouping’s core values of democracy, human rights, independence of the judiciary, freedom of expression and rule of law by 54 Heads of Government. As host and incoming CHOGM Chair for the next two years, Sri Lanka is expected to embody and uphold those values, a task that at this stage at least appears too much to hope for from the ruling administration in Colombo.

With a change of venue at this stage being virtually impossible, the international community appears to be resigned to playing the hand it is dealt, coercing and negotiating with a regime that has come in for harsh international and domestic criticism for eroding Sri Lanka’s democratic credentials and pursuing an increasingly autocratic style of governance.

As intense pressure from New Delhi and a lack of consensus within the ruling coalition scuttled President Rajapaksa’s plans to tinker with the 13th Amendment ahead of a provincial poll in the north, an election in September, albeit a little behind schedule, looks to be the only major concession the Government will make ahead of CHOGM 2013. The election that the international community has been pressing for is likely to take place in the last weekend of September, with President Rajapaksa now expected to constitute the Northern Provincial Council by proclamation sometime this week. July will prove to be a watershed month in terms of the fate of the 13th Amendment overall. On 9 July, the same day the Government-appointed Parliamentary Select Committee to recommend solutions to the national issue will convene for the first time, its sole membership comprising legislators from the ruling UPFA coalition, India will dispatch its National Security Advisor Shiv Shankar Menon to Colombo with a special message from the Indian Government for President Mahinda Rajapaksa. Following his meeting with the President, Menon will also meet with Defence Secretary Gotabaya Rajapaksa and representatives of the TNA, Sri Lanka Muslim Congress (SLMC) and the main opposition UNP.

Menon-Rajapaksa powwow

Analysts say Menon’s meeting with President Rajapaksa comes at a crucial juncture when New Delhi has been open about its shock over Colombo’s moves to dilute the 13th Amendment and potentially alter, unilaterally, a bilateral accord between the two countries. As such, the Menon-Rajapaksa meeting will be ‘less diplomatic’ and more straightforward about what consequences could arise from the Rajapaksa Government’s attempt to tamper with the 1987 Indo-Lanka Accord.

The Indian Government’s message could be a bold outline of expectations, a reminder of previous commitments and promises to New Delhi and President Rajapaksa’s own commitments to his own people following the conclusion of the military conflict in 2009. According to some analysts, what may remain unsaid during the Menon meeting on 9 July could be some possibilities New Delhi may be considering as last resorts if Colombo continues to renege on its post-war international commitments on reconciliation and devolution.
If the hectic attempt to scuttle devolution plans continue in Sri Lanka, New Delhi may place crucial issues on the agenda, including the controversial island of Kachchativu, speculated on widely since the Sri Lankan Government officially announced plans to revise the 13th Amendment, analysts say, while further escalation of the issue could even endanger Colombo’s enviable position as a transhipment hub and the Free Trade Agreement with India. However, given Colombo’s cosying up to Beijing, which puts its trade concerns above all else, it is unlikely India will mix politics with trade unless it is willing to concede influence exponentially to China with regard to Sri Lanka.
Yet these possibilities remain important in terms of how the Government handles the sensitive situation with New Delhi at this juncture, especially with the South Asian giant rapidly losing faith in the Government in Colombo.

Indian experts say New Delhi will tread cautiously, exhausting its diplomatic wherewithal in measured fashion based on the response from Colombo. As systematically applied pressure appears to be working in terms of deferring the Government’s moves to alter 13A ahead of the northern election, New Delhi could back off only to re-enter the fray when the issue re-emerges.

There is also some confidence in diplomatic quarters that once the Northern Council is elected and constituted, tampering with the 13th Amendment would prove that much harder for the Central Government, with the TNA enjoying more leverage as the most recently elected representatives of the Tamil people of the north. Moves to dilute the powers of the provincial councils may then be seen as a blatant attempt to disregard or dismiss the mandate of Sri Lanka’s Tamil population in the north.

But while the Government may have backtracked on the hasty moves to boost its credentials internationally ahead of CHOGM and to pacify New Delhi to prevent the summit from being scuttled, there is little doubt that repealing the provincial council system will remain high on the regime’s agenda. It is building opinion to that end resolutely, in supreme confidence that should the move require a referendum in the end to enforce, the groundwork will be well laid and ripe for a pro-Rajapaksa landslide.

Courtesy Daily FT

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    Dear Darisha Bastians,

    The Truth is bitter. In Sinhala “Atta Thittai”.

    It is hard to suppress these in the 21st century. The powerful Catholic Church failed in the 16th century.

    This is where Separation of Church and State becomes and Issue. However, the constitution requires a special place for Buddhism, so that the Buddhist Terrorism is protected.

    They need a Buddhist Index, to put the list of Banned Buddhist Books.

    However, the Time Article,while it tells the Truth about the Buddhist Terrorism, however, these terrorist monks do distort Buddhism, and true Buddhism is as much a victim as the Muslims they are targeting.

    They will turn away Buddhist Children from Buddhism, calling it Mara ism.

    So, they want to sugar coat and sweeten the bitter truth.

    Religion is the opium of the masses- Karl Marx. This they ban Karl Marx’s books as it includes Buddhism as well?

    True for the current regime, true for the catholic church and true for many others. The truth is contrary to their hype.

    The SL State is mixed up with Buddhism. There is no Separation of State and Religion. So,it is not truly secular. The Sinhala Buddhist Racists who follow the Monk Mahanamna Myths have prevailed, with the help of the racist Monk-Ruler Axis and sidelined the Egalitarian civilized Sri Lankans.

    The Devils, the Maras and the BBS and the JHU, the Jatika Harak or Cattle have come forward, based on their Myths, like one cattle who burned.

    The catholic Church did the same thing. It was called the Inquisition. Banned books added to the index. Opponents were toasted, barbecued, like Giardano Bruno and perhaps 500,000 of them.

    So, What is the CORE Problem in Sri Lanka? Sinhala Buddhist Racism, courtesy of Monk Mahanama Myths and the Monk-Ruler Axis.

    There are different types of Sri Lankan Buddhists. I would like to further clarify, the two types, and add a third type, that does not belong these two categories.

    1.Buddhist Moderates (Sri Lankans) – Moderates understand and respect Buddhism as a philosophy and quietly practice their faith in daily life to the best of their ability.

    There is a sub category, who are philosophers, but also respect the other philosophers, science, and may or may not believe in the unproven Nirvana, Nibbana, Rebirth and Sansara, but want an Egalitarian society, and do not belive the various Myths.

    2.The Sinhala-Buddhist- = Need to be Sinhala, and Need to be Buddhist.
    = Sinhala Buddhist Racists= Sinhala Mara Followers

    They want to identify as Sinhala. Who are the Sinhala? They belong the the Southern Indian Genepool, and they discriminate their own gene pool, the Southern Indian Tamils and Muslims.

    They Claim to be Buddhists, and it has nothing to do with Buddhism. The politicians exploit them. That is the TRUTH. Furthermore, they have planted many Shills.

    They follow Mara. They are opportunists. Like Monk Mahanama, BBS, JHU and others. They do not know Buddhist Philosophy, make Statues out of clay, paint them and worship them. That is tribal. This is the Sinhala Buddhist Tribe, piggy backing of the Enlightened Buddhas Buddhism.

    What is the Core Problem? The Core Problem is Sinhala Buddhism and its

    What happened to the original natives and their beliefs? Did anybody in Lanka achieve Nirvana, Nibbana or rebirth after 2,300 years? NO

    This is where the Core Problem lies, with the Sinhala Buddhists and the Brainwashing of the Myths by Monk Mahanama.

    Actually, it is Buddhism that is the Core problem in Lanka, not necessarily Sinhala. Why? Monk Hegemony. Lanka had a civilization before the introduction of Buddhism.

    So IF the Sinhala were all Christian or Catholic, they would have a different worldview, and would be more accommodating of the other peoples, and would not be mislead by the Monk Hegemony.
    Furthermore, Lanka was originally Veddah, Yakka, Naga and Rakshaya before the introduction of Sinhalese by the Kalingas, the “grandson” of the Lion, and the Myths of Monk Mahanama.

    Bali Island Indonesia is 94% Hindu and Peaceful.
    Lanka was Jain, Animist and Hindu before the introduction of Buddhism.
    King Ravana was Hindu,and civilized, if Ramayana was true.

    So, the historical data points out the core problem in Lanka as Buddhist Monks and Buddhism, to continue the Monk Hegemony. Did anybody gain Nirvanna, Nibbana, Rebirth, or Sansara in Lanka over the past 2,500 years? NO.

    BBS, Burma Monks and the Mahanayakas are the problem. They belong to the Sinhala Buddhist Tribe. They are like the Catholic Church Before Martin Luther’s Protestant Reformation.

    So, what is needed is the Reformation of the Monk Hegemony.
    Is there a Buddhist Martin Luther? That is what is needed.

    Read;

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Martin_Luther

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xc6Ci_V23oE

    During the early 16th Century idealistic German monk Martin Luther, disgusted by the materialism in the church, begins the dialogue that will lead to the Protestant Reformation

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      It is Christianity that had numerous Crusades. Christians have condemned Jews, Muslims and fought Catholics versus protestants.

      BUDDHISTS HAVE NEVER KILLED IN THE NAME OF BUDDHISM.

      This writer should a Be Christian/Catholic. So, she is bashing buddhism.

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        In the name of Sun God Emperor Hirohito of Japan,without warning massacred the Americans in Hawaii, occupied the sub continent from Burma to Singapore and also bombed Ceylon. If not for the defense of British Royal forces all these countries would have been under Japan. Which philosophy the Japanese were following.May be yours

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          They practiced Shinto not Buddhism.

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        One need not kill, just creating havoc and using abusive language by a Buddhist monk itself is equivalent to killing as Buddha preached LOVE. JimSofly you are good in branding people. Once you called me a Muslim, I am not sure what you will call me this time. How can you say Buddhists have never killed what about the killing of Late Mr. Bandaranayake? Monks of every religion has killed at some point of time but that does not mean that we can brand every one with the same title. However, when a Buddhist monk use unparliamentary language in the streets of Colombo, throws stones, attacks people and instigate people to attack another religious place of worship, we have to pause and think what punishment we should give these so called religious monks.

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        they are killing in Burma sadly

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        The writer is not bashing Buddhism She is bashing the abuse of Buddhism. You should welcome it. The BBS is not Buddhist, they cannot be, since they openly disobey the teachings of the Buddha.

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      Dharisha, the massive protests by university students in Colombo yesterday which was impressive and should be in the news papers gives us a taste of the Lanka Spring in the making..

      The Rajapassa regime will next ban stories about peoples protests and uprisings in the Mid-East, Brazil, and Turkey against COL and corrupt dictatorial regimes that only care about fattening themselves and their crony capitalists at the expense of the masses..

      The Commonwealth of Clowns meeting in Colombo in November will be the site of protests against the extravagance of the Rajapassa regime that has destroyed the economy, run up massive foreign debt and mortgaged Lanka to boost the ego of Rajapassa – a military dictator.
      The problem is the clown Ranil in the UNP who is supposed to be leader of the opposition is not educating the voters on the ECONOMIC CRISIS because he is busy consolidating his dictatorship in the UNP!
      So University students will be on the streets and a mass uprising will be inevitable as the RUPEE CRASHES

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      Thank you amarasiri for that unbiased report. However I do like to mention that catholic and christian countries we see today which have an open society is largely due to their religion developing from the barbaric ages such as the middle age which would burn and kill anyone who questioned the church. One qood example would be Islam. Islam seems to be at its beginning stages still, which is why it has very strict rigidity and constant fear of questioning a book which claims to know everything as we have seen in the past – the reaction to the prophets cartoon and many more

      But overall I must say all religions breed hate, murder. Sadly this country which would have been an open one with buddhism has been tainted with silly nationalism and blood.

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    Geo Politics and Egypt becomes Transparent.

    Down with the Myth following Religious fanatics. Who is next?

    Let’s hope this is the beginning of the end of Washable and Buddhist Wahhanism called BBS ism.

    http://www.reuters.com/article/2013/07/03/us-egypt-protests-idUSBRE95Q0NO20130703

    After a day of drama in which tanks and troops deployed near the presidential palace as a military deadline for Mursi to yield to mass protests passed, the top army commander announced on television that the president had “failed to meet the demands of the Egyptian people”.

    Flanked by political and religious leaders and top generals, General Abdel Fattah al-Sisi announced the suspension of the Islamist-tinged constitution and a roadmap for a return to democratic rule under a revised rulebook.

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    While the Rajapakse regime continues to play its game of Ducks and Drakes with India on the 13th Amendment and the much assured NPC elections – telling the country one thing and Delhi another, it is curious why Basil R has to rush to Delhi now, while Indian VVIP Shiv Shankar Menon is due here next week. This gives rise to speculation among usually well informed sources the BR visit is to get guarantees Loku Aiya will not renege this time on the many assurances made. Katchaiteevu, the Writer notes here is small beer compared to the danger of under-grading the much hyped CHOGM. There is already speculation in London Prince Charles is not keen on getting embroiled in a political and diplomatic minefield. The UK Govt has 2 days ago issued a warning to British visitors to the Island of well-connected killer gangs, kidnappers – a general cautionary note normally issued to in a Pakistan-Afghanistan-Iraqi environment.

    Senguttuvan

    Senguttuvan

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      Senguttuvan ,
      i wouldn’t bet on it , British play Royce Royal diplomacy ,Ausis play Boat people diplomacy (it is a very welcome note that despicable woman Julia G has vacated the office , Kevin Rudd seems to be a pragmatist ),Indian prime minister M.singh is a virtual puppet of that Italian woman , Basically Indian politics has been hijacked by this foreign woman akin to Rajapakse in SL politics, in a nut shell don’t expect any thing spectacular.

      Ps. Do you know that Ch4 Callum Macrae’s latest documentary movie is to be screened in Australian parliament ?

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        Once more, Srilal makes a thoughtful comment. Please allow me to make two points.

        Except for the Nehru’s final years, the Indian Cabinet has been more of a team effort. No single person there, in my reading, makes decisions on all issues. Indira and Sanjay G tried to hijack the system to be personal property and engaged the predictable backlash. India, where a very large percentage of the voters are “ignorant or semi-ignorant” – a label is necessary to capture votes. Sonia Gandhi and her children provide that. The alert Indian media, judiciary or the System will eventually catch up with Bofors and many other scandals that characterised the period during which Sonia was the symbolic head of the Indian Congress Party. She was never, technically, in the Govt system.

        The Rajapakses must be reminded of Timor L’este. It can be argued it was part of the vast Indonesian Archipelago and its largely Catholic and Portugese-speaking people were kept down for decades by Indonesian armed force. But the resistance continued and eventually the UN and the international community set them free. China or Russia did very little to stop the final result. Timor L’este – like the NEP in Sri Lanka – satisfied all criteria recognised by the UN and the world. Her becoming free could not more be stopped. Sri Lanka is in a better situation. We can still maintain our territorial integrity and remain an undivided country. It is lack of resolve, obstinacy, struggle for power within and blind religious fanaticism running amok that is on our way. Let us not blame India, the diaspora or the international community for our inherent weaknesses. Did the Filipinos learn a lesson from Timor by coming into an arrangement to settle the Mindanao crisis eventually?

        Senguttuvan

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          Dear Senguttuvan

          i respectfully disagree with your opinion , according to my reading Sonia calls the shots in Indian politics , just go through the names of the elites in the inner circle , then you will see how much influence she has in Indian politics.
          with regards to East Timor , it is a total different ball game .
          with the demise of dictator Suharto , things did not go smoothly with Dr BJ Habibie , john Howard along with the other stooges (Alexander downer, Philip Ruddock et al ) engineered the whole separation saga from Indonesia , for their own end gains (Oil).
          when it comes to SL , India would never let sri lanka to be separated as it would inevitably destabilize India.

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            Dear Srilal,

            If you will, it is more in line to say Sonia calls the shots in Congress Party politics than in Indian politics. At the wider national level both she and her Party are trailing behind. How far this latest election gimmick of providing subsidised food to the poor will work only time will. The Indian Rupee hitting the
            Rs60 mark against the US$ must be worrying Chidambaram and the Cabinet to no end.

            As to East Timor, one cannot entirely blame the Aussies. They expected the former Borneo to be free – but colonial Indonesia had other ideas. Language, religion, continuous habitat and history helped the new country gaining Statehood – features that Eelamists will continue to pursue unless the Rajapakses yield to TNA’s current formulae of working towards an undivided country.

            Senguttuvan

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              Dear Senguttuvan,

              with the current Rajapakse hegemony , if not India , SL would be divided in to two for sure !
              east Timor was never a part of Indonesia , only in 1975 they invaded it and claimed it was part of Indonesia , at that time only Australia jumped the gun and recognized east Timor as a part of Indonesia., of course Aussies alone didn’t separate the province , resistance movement was there from the day one , with the ouster of that mad tyrant Suharto , john Howard led administration fuelled the inferno for their own benefit , just do a little Google search to find out who benefitted from the separation ( of course apart from east Timorians ).
              When it comes to Indian politics , yes i agree with your assertions , by the way did Chidambaram win the last election ?

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        Julia Gillard is not a despicable woman.

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      So you and your DIE – ARSE – POHORA are happy about it ?

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    These are the other side of LIES SPREAD by this type of JOURNALISTS.

    ” Although the government seems more complacent when it comes to the anti-Muslim rhetoric, Rakhine Buddhists repeatedly face persecution and tension with the government as well, especially when it comes to protests over resource extraction projects and land confiscation. “

    ” A Buddhist monk holds up a poster during a demonstration protesting against violence on Buddhists in Bangladesh in front of the Bangladesh Embassy in Yangon October 8, 2012. Poster reads, “Stop killing Buddhists in Bangladesh”. “

    ” from Bhikkhu Abhiggananda

    dear friends…bangladeshi muslims burn total 30 buddhist temples and 200 buddhist houses in bangladesh…so we are so worried for that…victims now in the open in the sky…..pls pray for them….. “

    “More than a thousand Muslims are sheltering in a Buddhist monastery in Myanmar’s northeastern town of Lashio after violence that killed one person and burned down Muslim properties.

    Read more: http://digitaljournal.com/article/352191#ixzz2Y2o9hhUN

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      You may be right about what is happening elsewhere but do not blame this writer for that.

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    Time subscribers mainly go for the Free Gifts.

    Can the Time match the demolition job these wide array of Christian and some Hip Buddhist Journos do on Sinhal Buddhists, their culture their Monks and even their Lankan Buddha?.

    The funny bit is while these Christian NGO funded Journos have taken a massive liking to our poor Muslim cousins in this part of the world ,their Financiers are killing Muslims in thousands in the Middle East after giving them Democracy.

    CHOGM Heavy Cameron gave money and arms to Moderate Vigilantes in Syria,

    Ninety five thousand poor innocent Muslims, mainly Shites are dead now and two Million in refugee Camps.

    His buddy in US wants to give more Arms although these hired guns are also AlQueda miltants.

    Perhaps part time work on top of the day job like our Diasporians in the West do for extra income.

    Ms Sebastians of this world seem oblivious to this carnage.

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      Sumane, Are actually a frustrated woman seeking a man with a prominent “NOSE”/

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    Telling truth is a crime in Sri Lanka

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    @K.A Sumanasekera
    ==========================

    Hee,hee -we are Buddhist we do not Kill ,we burn men,women and babies alive …..

    In Joyous remeberence of black july 1983… who dare question US ….?????

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    When will ‘Time’ and ‘Darisha’ speak about the terrorism in Thailand and Bangladesh against Buddhists. Even though the Anti Buddhists mafia use this conflict to attack Buddhists,unlike in Thailand or Bangladesh this is not a Buddhist Muslim conflict but Burmese and Bangladeshi Rohingaya conflict.Anti Buddhists mafia conveniently ignores this fact and never talk about the Buddhists including monks being killed only because they happen to be Buddhists in the the two neighbouring countries.
    Unlike in Sri Lanka the Rohingayas attack Burmese nationals and the same happens in Thailand and Bangladesh.In Thailand it has full blown terrorism and Buddhists are forced to abandon their homes or live under constent military protection. No one talks about their plight!

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    Dear Srilal,

    “…with the current Rajapakse hegemony , if not for India, SL would be divided in to two for sure…” How many of even the more articulate of my Sinhala brothers are conscious of this fact.

    There is much speculation as to if Shri P. Chidambaram really won Sivaganga in the last GenElections. The role played by Shri Karunanidhi and his children to deliver the final successful verdict to Shri Chidambaram is a question that often generates much heat.

    Senguttuvan

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