28 October, 2020

Blog

Imprisoning An Island 

By Dayan Jayatilleka 

Dr. Dayan Jayatilleka

The fate of Sri Lanka, not just the success or failure of the incumbent regime, depends on the overall model adopted and the path taken. That model and that path stem from the perspective, indeed the policy doctrine that guides the country’s leader, which then becomes the dominant doctrine of the state and government. 

Just how would the President’s doctrine, that what he says must be taken as a written circular or else, work AFTER the 20th amendment is passed? Does it mean that whatever he may verbally instruct one of his many appointees across the board—e.g. a Supreme Court judge– should be taken as a written instruction, or else?  

As one who worked with two outstanding Presidents, Ranasinghe Premadasa and Mahinda Rajapaksa, I’d say the GR Presidency is in a very distinctive category, qualitatively different from both. 

As a political scientist, I’d say the emerging political model is structurally, qualitatively more dictatorial than the 1978 Jayewardene Presidency. 

As someone accused of militant rebellion against the authoritarianism of the Jayewardene-Athulathmudali regime, I’d say the political model and ideology of the GR Presidency is the most Rightwing and reactionary that has ever been experienced in Sri Lanka since 1948. 

As a former ambassador, I’d say 20A would discredit and delegitimize us internationally. 

The new Constitution will construct a State that imprisons an island. The 20th amendment is the foundation stone.

The story began on the other side of the island. The cult of a strongman who embodies the ‘Will of the Nation’; the fetishism of the heroic military; the ubiquity of uniforms and guns; the shadowy omnipresence of intelligence agencies; the military drilling civilian recruits; aggressive nationalism and sacralization of one’s ethnonational community; the argument that the cohesion and unity of the nation requires and justifies dictatorship; the exaltation of imposed discipline and militarization of all sectors; the applause of the very rich and the elite professionals; the contemptuous dismissal of human rights and civil liberties; the doctrine that absolutely anything goes in the cause of your nation; the abandonment of right and wrong, good and bad; the  rejection of universality, moderation, prudence and wisdom —these defined the ethos of Tamil society in the North-East and the Diaspora, during the reign of Prabhakaran and his Tigers. 

Now, the South, Sinhala society, is going through its parabolic Prabhakaran/Tamil Eelam moment — Sinhalized of course, and processed through an electoral portal. 

It’s Prabhakaran’s posthumous revenge. The protracted close encounter with him has sickened our conscience, possessed our souls. His totalitarian Tamil Eelam has infiltrated the unconscious of some who fought him, and is imprinted, mirrored in their mentalities. 

We are becoming the evil enemy we hated, defeated. 

We are building a Sinhala-Buddhist Eelam. 

Rigidity, Not Strength

The monopolization of power through the 20th amendment turns the Presidency into a monarchy by another name — which the Founding Fathers of the USA, having fought a revolution and liberated themselves from monarchy (‘Mad King George’), explicitly wished to avoid when they created the Presidency. With the militarization of civil administration running parallel, the 20th amendment arguably turns that elected monarchy into a military-backed dictatorship.

If the President and his inner-circle understood politics, or adhered to the Clausewitzean dictum that ‘war is a continuation of politics’ rather than standing it on its head and regarding politics as a continuation of war, they’d know what Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapaksa’s ‘Committee Report’ initiative was trying to save him and the government from: the over-accumulation of power at the very top, which soon turns the Presidency into a much bigger and singular political target, socially, nationally and internationally (whatever the Cyril Mathew-ite racist diversions by the local Fox News). 

The more diffuse the distribution of power in a system, the more responsibility is institutionally shared, the less of a target the person at the top is, and conversely, that the more power is concentrated in the person at the top, the more he/she is responsible for anything and everything that goes wrong and becomes a magnet for discontent, making the government and the entire system (not to mention the ruling family!) vulnerable.  

The President’s ‘offensive operation’ has shown the PM, the Ministers and MPs where exactly they stand, and in full public view. This is akin to President Trump playing to his hardcore constituency by trashing the Republican establishment and officialdom, but in the Sri Lankan case it is something steelier. It reneged on a promise the President gave his Sinhala nationalist caucuses, and kicked back a pragmatic initiative by his legendary brother. 

The President’s argument is that 20A is temporary and transitional to an impending new Constitution. Why then this swift seizure of power? The Rajapaksa ‘family project’ is not the most decisive factor in the GR presidency’s decision-making, because if it were, a win/win compromise was certainly possible with the PM’s initiative of resetting 20A through the Ministerial panel’s report. 

It also seems that within the ruling family there is also a new sibling alignment and a new hegemon, based not upon seniority, experience or historic achievement. The new Godfather is President Gotabaya Rajapaksa. 

If the PM and Cabinet are treated with such scant regard while 19th Amendment is still in place, one can well imagine what things will be like for everyone after 20A replaces it. 

The calculation is that the hardcore constituency will applaud, and the setback for the PM and Cabinet are a small price to pay for sending a clear signal of unbending Presidential authority and irreversibility of decision-making. The downside is that it reveals rigidity, capriciousness, and razor-edged angularity, rather than real inner strength and long-range strategic wisdom. 

The 20th amendment changes the set of interrelationships between the ruler and the state structures and institutions, overriding all autonomy and separation of spheres of influence, completely altering the balance within the state, and thereby, the very character of the state system itself. 

The dictatorial state that the 20th amendment is the doorway to, will not be the nationalist paragon of sovereignty and independence that it postures as. It will be a dependent dictatorship; a client despotism, economically, politically, strategically and psychologically dependent upon a rising metropolitan center with a political system that is alien to or has been superseded in South Asia. The Chinese political model works very well for China, and China’s stability and success are good for the rest of us as a counterweight, but the Sri Lankan regime is gravely erring by adopting and adapting the closed, centralized Chinese political mode. The domestic permeation of its political-ideological influence, as distinct from its positive economic, diplomatic and strategic balancing value, is negative; a retrogression in a democratic South Asia.  

The 20th amendment transforms the equation between the ruler, the swathe of intermediary institutions and the citizenry into a one-way street, and a relationship of dominance/serfdom. With 20A and state militarization as parents, the only thing that can be born from the womb of this distorted structural matrix, this grotesque genetic modification of the state system, is a Frankenstein’s monster. 

Power is a drive. Rulership, unconstrained, is inherently self-expansionist. A tight, closed, unbalanced ‘Pharaonic’ political system is a system with zero-equilibrium, a system in permanent disequilibrium; unsafe, unstable, unsustainable. Unbound executive power without ‘cruise control’, is the nuclear reactor at its heart. It is intrinsically self-destructive: a constitutional Chernobyl.

Abolition of the Executive Presidency?

Most Sinhalese want a strong Presidency capable of swift decision-making on matters of defense, national security and sovereignty. Some want a dictatorship, while most want a democracy. We need a Presidency as in the USA, France, Mexico, South Korea, Indonesia etc. That’s not what 20A creates. It creates a Darth Vader presidency.       

The Gotabaya Presidency is nothing like any previous Presidency including that of JR Jayewardene. All previous Presidencies since 1978, and indeed all Sri Lankan leaders since 1948, practiced the politics of balance, negotiation and consensus. President Gotabaya Rajapaksa was also about to, but let himself be prevailed upon to disregard consensus-building in favor of unipolar unilateralism. 

Analysis of the regime as ‘majoritarian-populist’ has been disproved by the President who reversed a concession to the populist-nationalist Pohottuwa ranks. This is not a nationalist-populist rulership style and political subculture; it is a rigid, Hard-Right, militarist, ‘commanding officer’ style and subculture of governance. 

It would be wrong to see the regime –including the ruling family– as a monolith, free of internal contradictions. It would also be wrong to assume that internal dissent could spearhead a democratization movement. The weak potential of internal dissent was proven by the headlong retreat into conformity of the PM and Cabinet on 20A. Latent contradictions will turn into a spiderweb of fissures over the years, but cannot be counted upon, still less passively awaited. 

A model of tactics against a family-centric autocracy can be gleaned from JR Jayewardene as UNP leader and Leader of the Opposition in 1973-1977. He identified and targeted the two elements that constituted the most dictatorial nodal points in the government: (a) the rightwing Felix Dias Bandaranaike (nicknamed ‘Satan’ by the LSSP) who was the first to  advocate the doctrine that drives the Gotabaya regime, namely “a little bit of totalitarianism”, and (b) the pro-China, pro-Gang-of-Four, pro-Khmer Rouge ‘Janavegaya’ clique led by Madam Bandaranaike’s oldest offspring and son-in-law. JRJ launched a Parliamentary motion of no-confidence against the Janavegaya clique, accusing it of plotting to violently subvert democracy, together with Sinhala nationalist ex-military officers.    

While liberal democrats rightly advocate the separation of powers and invoke popular sovereignty, a quarter-century of neoliberal reformist downgrading of national security, beginning with the mollycoddling of Prabhakaran’s LTTE and culminating in the Easter massacres, has made the Lankan citizenry accept a Hobbesian trade-off (not a Faustian bargain) of individual and civic space for the restoration of a ‘Security First’ policy by the state. 

As a political scientist who is also a Realist, I recognize that a Lockean separation of powers and Rousseau-esque republican popular sovereignty can be built back only upon the foundational Hobbesian Social Contract which guarantees security and safety.   

Contrary to neoliberal civil society claims, the abolition of the Executive Presidency has been incidental at best, and irrelevant at worst, for citizen-voters at Presidential elections. CBK won in 1994 because the UNP had been devastated by LTTE assassinations—Ranil being the only one Prabhakaran never wasted his time attempting to target—and its candidate, the widow of the late Gamini Dissanayake, was not even a member of the UNP. MR won because the choice was between him and Ranil, and he was the only one who would stand up to Prabhakaran. MR beat SF because the people rewarded him for having given the political leadership that no other President had, winning the war while warding-off foreign interference. MS beat MR because the SLFP fissured with the Bharatha Lakshman killing. 

The Executive Presidency has never been abolished under successive Presidents who were vastly different from each other, because there was no national-popular traction when it came to decapitating the Presidency. Nobody could get a two-thirds or risk a referendum. 

By contrast, an unprecedented (under PR) two-thirds majority has been obtained precisely for re-strengthening a weakened, dysfunctional Executive Presidency. 

From Latin America to East Asia, waves of democratization which displaced military-backed authoritarianism have shown that an absolute imperative of successful anti-dictatorial strategy is an enlightened nationalist/patriotic/‘sovereignist’ platform which incrementally wins the support of the armed forces, gradually thawing-out the military underpinning of autocracy and obstruction of democratization. 

Therefore, when NGO-neoliberals who supported the PTOMS giveaway to Prabhakaran, and whose ideology and agenda over the past quarter-century has wrecked the UNP, the SLFP (through Yahapalanaya with Ranil) and almost wrecked the JVP, now brand  Sajith’s SJB ‘Rajapaksa Lite’, utterly unconcerned about the infinitely greater risk of it being branded ‘Ranil Lite’ and ‘UNP clone’, I’d say the Premadasa-led Opposition is back in the game, leading the national-democratic struggle and social-democratic project. 

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Latest comments

  • 24
    3

    The Supreme Court will decide tomorrow if people should trust it or not.

    20A verdict is due tomorrow.

    The correct verdict is 20A needs a referendum. If it is passed at a referendum then all is good. If people want a dictator let them have a dictator.

    • 11
      2

      Please open the following link to view a cartoon by Gary Larson..
      Hope at last the “wise” members in the Judiciary and the Executive would realize that they have been eating “grass” for the last few decades and vote against the undemocratic 20A.

      https://i.pinimg.com/originals/75/b0/a7/75b0a75a722112fbacfc8b0019803225.jpg

      Good Luck Sri Lanka!

    • 11
      2

      GATAM

      “Supreme Court”

      What is it?

      “If people want a dictator let them have a dictator.”

      People didn’t want dictator. Isn’t it why only 42% of the eligible electors voted for the psychopath and his clan?

      • 5
        8

        Mr. Native Sudda
        .
        Population of Sri Lanka – 21,435,578 (Data – http://www.worldometers)
        .
        Votes received by SP/SJB – 2,771,984 (13%)
        Rejected by 87% of the population.
        .
        Votes received by AKD/JJB – 445,958 (2%)
        Rejected by 98% of the population.
        .
        Votes received by RW/UNP – 249435 (1%)
        Rejected by 99% of the population.

        • 11
          1

          S. C. Passqual

          Population of Sri Lanka – 21,435,578

          Eligible Electors – 16,263,885 (100%)

          Voted for crooks, war criminals, …. 6,853,690 (42%)

          Electors who chose not to vote for crooks, criminals, racists, bigots 9,410,195 (58%)

          • 7
            1

            NV,

            You are SPOT ON !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!1

            Yes, indeed Electors who chose not to vote for crooks, high criminals, racists, chain robber, murderers, rapists, drug traffickers, vandalists, bigots 9,410,195 (58%)

            58% of voter eligible were against. nevertheless these dimwits to think that majority is pro WAR CRIMINALS ?

            Now Ms SCP will make effort to hide his tail behind the rear legs …

          • 2
            3

            Mr. Native Sudda,
            .
            Funny sense of arithmetic you have my dear……
            .
            16,263,885 out of 21,435,578 is 100%…..?

            • 7
              1

              S. C. Passqual

              Total population 21,435,578

              Electors who are eligible to vote 16,263,885 (100%)

              Electors who are eligible to vote and did vote for SLPP 6,853,690 (42%)

              Electors who are eligible to vote and didn’t vote for SLPP 9,410,195 (58%)

              Simple, what does it prove?
              You are born stupid.
              I suggest you start at nursery.

    • 2
      0

      GATAM: .”.20A needs a Referendum” with the duly amended version.

      Foremost Thank you, Sir, for the most precise points raised against 20A and what it was intended to do – no Columnist could have written a better clarification. A record-breaking
      number of Court Appeals reflects the Sri Lanka intelligentsia vis-a-vis SB Voters.

      God save Sri Lanka.

  • 26
    6

    GOTA knows clearly what he’s doing is totally undemocratic, unconstitutional and illegal. Yet he’s doing it … because he can do it: he has the overwhelming majority in parliament, the judiciary is subservient to him, the media is in his pocket, Buddhist monks and Malcolm Ranjith’s priests are his sycophants, and the military and police are his servants. So what can anyone do to stop him? There are only two ways the country can be rescued from this plunge into a fascist dictatorship. (1) India: It can scuttle Gota’s plans to dismantle democracy by arguing that would cause political instability in Sri Lanka creating tension in the region and thereby pose a threat to India’s security. India should then impose severe economic sanctions on Sri Lanka. (2) People: All across the island people of all communities should take to the streets and bring the country to a complete standstill.

    • 16
      0

      “As a political scientist who is also a Realist, I recognize that a Lockean separation of powers and Rousseau-esque republican popular sovereignty can be built back only upon the foundational Hobbesian Social Contract “
      Wow, what a complicated way to indicate ones willingness to change sides ( and arguments) , given the right (realist) circumstances.

      • 10
        1

        old codger

        Dayan types you quoted:

        “As a political scientist who is also a Realist, I recognize that a Lockean separation of powers and Rousseau-esque republican popular sovereignty can be built back only upon the foundational Hobbesian Social Contract which guarantees security and safety.”

        Dayan just drops many words and phrases I doubt he ever understood them. I am not that clever to understand all those incomprehensible words and phrases. Can you clarify the actual meaning of the following words and what exactly Dayan meant, what did he expect to achieve:

        political scientist
        Realist
        Lockean separation
        Rousseau-esque republican popular sovereignty
        Hobbesian Social Contract

        Has he explained the difference between Jean-Jacques Rousseau’s Social Contract and Hobbesian Social Contract? Dayan must have misunderstood the idea of Hobbean Leviathan and ‘man is born free, but he is everywhere in chains’.

        If you are confused I am sorry I can’t help you.

        I always thought he drop names, praise his own tail to impress his partner/wife.

      • 14
        1

        OC
        Have you come across the book title “The Art of Saying Nothing and Really Meaning It!” by Donald Floyd?
        I like the title.
        DJ is a true master of ‘the art of saying anything but meaning nothing’ and he should write a handbook for novices in the game.

        • 9
          0

          SJ, Native,
          As somebody said about Sajith,
          “Dr.DJ seems to have swallowed a thesaurus.”

          • 8
            0

            OC remember, DJ is not only a ‘political scientist who is also a Realist’, he is also
            ‘a former ambassador’
            ‘one who worked with two outstanding Presidents’,
            ‘someone accused of militant rebellion against the authoritarianism of JR’
            .
            How come nobody else recognises a modest genius in our midst?

            • 4
              1

              Stanley

              “How come nobody else recognises a modest genius in our midst?”

              Dayan the war monger and (self) celebrated war crime denier takes 64 positions, all at the same time. Is that why he is not visible to the public?

    • 7
      1

      IT IS SELF EXPLANATORY GOTler doesn’t know. If he lived in the states if not in a prison , he would nt come with such arguments right ? . But if he lived 15 years in an Arabic country his arguments could be considered as valid , now GOTA analysts could reveal more about his 15 year long asylum period in the US.?????????????????

    • 15
      6

      Now Tamils are asking India to intervene to save them. Very soon Sinhalese will ask India to intervene to save them, like what happened to Idi Amin.

      • 7
        4

        Tamils have been asking India to meddle on their behalf for a long time, certainly since India meddled in what was East Pakistan half a century ago.
        It did meddle in 1987 in a big way, and Tamils should have learned a lesson of their life.
        Anyone in his late forties and above, except bonded slaves posing as leaders, will still nurse bitter memories.
        India’s role in the ‘Peace Process’ early this century and in the intensified war should have a message for the intelligent.
        *
        Some refuse to learn not out of stupidity but sinister motives.

        • 2
          1

          SJ types:

          “…….certainly since India meddled in what was East Pakistan half a century ago.”

          The distance between Pakistan and Bangladesh is about 1257 miles.
          What was Pakistan doing in East Bengal in the first place?
          When the name Pakistan was coined by Choudhry Rahmat Ali from an acronym of Punjab, Afghania, Kashmir, Sindh, and Baluchistan, Eastern Bengal was not part of it.

          Where does this man SJ get his facts?
          I have no idea.

          Could anyone tell us where was SJ when Pakistan was committing war crimes all over Eastern Bengal?
          Was he busy memorising THE RED BOOK, praising his cult leader and proselytising novices into Maoism or explaining the goodness of of Maoism over Stalinism?

      • 4
        2

        Very like the world intervened in Hitler s dictatorship
        . Please look at the body language of incumbent president whenever he expresses in public.Even if medamulana men are born fools, atheist 6 million s of voters are against them. Obviously he doesn’t have the slightest idea what an impact any of his evasive statements would have, as if he is already the king of Sl. ??????????

    • 14
      3

      Ajay,
      Unfortunately, Sinhala majority are not in a mood to think rationally about their future. The two third majority in parliament not only includes hardcore Buddhist Sinhala Fundamentalists but also left oriented and Eelam fighters. Even though Mahinda Rajapakse who had over 50 years experience and considered him as a huiman rights. activist well aware that this amendment is going to affect his own family and human rights of Sinhala people, all are just going to vote for this amendment against to their conscience. The image they created among Sinhala masses against India and Western countries for political opportunism will not allow them to think about the impact of a dictatorship. So, they will not listen to India. Majority of Sinhala think that their military power is greater than India’s. They also think China will protect them at any cost. So, at this stage unless Sinhala masses and other communities should get together and take to the streets to stop this Psychopaths mania to destroy Srilanka.

      • 5
        1

        “Sinhala majority are not in a mood to think rationally about their future.”
        If it is so, Ajay, how on earth then can ‘Sinhala masses and other communities get together and take to the streets to stop this “Psychopaths mania” to destroy Sri Lanka?

  • 10
    1

    Ajay: That “No 2” solution will not take place for some time to come. “GR” has fathomed it well and preparing the people to say “Hail GR” at any moment he calls for it. That is why he has taken the initial step of “Storming” the Public Offices and even taking “Disciplinary Action” (by way of transfers, as happened in the Housing Authority) and “Organize” public gatherings in remote villages (like Haldummulla) to reprimand the “Public Officials” (such as teachers & Public officials) in front of the villagers to receive their “Tumultuous Applause & Cheers”. He will continue with this “Road Shows” in the coming days & months, with the “Hawkish” intension of garnishing the “PEOPLES YES” to a “New Constitution at a “Referendum”. Now his newly found “Innermost Buddy”, the Minister of Justice, Mr.Ali Sabri says, “We are prepared to go for a Referendum if the SC so decides on the “20A”.That “Arrogance” is spewed from the “spring hole” of the arrogance of his “BOSS”. The “STRATEGY” of “GR” is two-fold: (1) He knows well, he has to “Dissolve” the “Public Perception” and “Popularity” of his brother MR -the PM. and establish his “Image” over and above the rest of the “CLAN”. (2) He wants to “Establish” himself akin to Mr. Lee Kuvan Yiu of Singapore and “Live” among the people as the “God Sent Messiah” to put things “RIGHT” in Sri Lanka.

    • 9
      0

      Simon,
      Ali Sabri will learn his lesson sooner than later. He even doesn’t know how to behave, it was disgusting the way he screamed at a MP in the Parliament. It showed his lack of experience, collectedness, and composure, just like his boss. He exhibited he can talk to people like that, because his boss has power (same way මුලාදෑනියාගේ බල්ලා assumes it has the power to bark at anyone). Some think yelling at the top of one’s voice makes one a hero. It reminded me the way GR replied to BBC interviewer when asked about Lasantha. People like Sabri, GR are very primitive, boorish and uncivilized. No one should compare LKY to GR. It’s an insult to that late distinguished leader. First LKY set the rules, and then made it follow from top to bottom. He didn’t make himself exempt from the rule of law. He didn’t go to poor, uneducated people to impress them by scolding unprotected public officials. Public officials are bound by the regulations written in the Establishment Code. If they break those, they will have to pay the price, like what happened to Lalith Weeratunga. Ironically Lalith was seated next to GR, witnessing it again.

  • 13
    1

    President’s office put out a circular that
    destruction of Sinharaja forests and other forests are all fake news.
    There is no destruction of forests taking place.

    The photos in the media are fake!

    The President said it !
    It must be taken as truth !
    any one challenging it will face severe punishment!

    why do we need 20A or for that matter a constitution

    • 8
      0

      Rajash,
      Oh, then it is the Gospel truth, and the new “Sir Kew Law” (circular). Even before the 20A get approved, they are threatening with severe punishment. Baiyas can see what will happen after it gets approved. But boot licking, ass kissing Baiya sycophants wouldn’t mind it, because it is in their blood. I am wondering what happened to those cardboard heroes like Padadadeniya, and GMOA who used to scream about Democracy in the past. Who will be the henchman who is going behind GR (මහදැන මුත්තා) to write down all the instructions coming out of his mouth? Recently I saw a nice picture of Bandula G. as පොල්බෑ මූණා inside a half of a coconut. No matter what our people are very creative.

  • 11
    1

    The words of a Christian hymn sung at funerals – in the sweet bye and bye or by should be made the national anthem of this sad sorry shitty soon to be disfigured island.
    =
    Only manner this bully Kalla kallathoni of an illegal war criminal of a president not even having a seconds experience in politics knows is to get his ever-willing fellow corrupt to the core fellow swabasha war criminal, military goons to take over bully and run the colony of beggars as a youth centre prison.?
    =
    I for one am very sceptical about tomorrows judgement, and a referendum might be only a wet pipe dream a huja barai one.
    =
    If the five member panel of judges have any balls in them and are not prepared to return back to their government bungalows in one piece they will eke out a fair judgement stating that a referendum is needed.
    If otherwise, they will be embarking on their last ride in a government jalopy where the lives of their driver and the bodyguard s will also be at risk.
    =
    I also forecast that very soon the rajapuka brothers especially the ambitious world’s best bullshitter mahindapuka’s family and the Kalla kallathoni will be at loggerheads and the latter mahindapuka should use his popularity to put kate puss on his own younger accidental birth brother,

  • 32
    1

    Dayan J.
    you too are responsible for this destructive fate of SriLanka. Had you worked with two outstanding Presidents, what advice you gave them? Why the country is in a worse condition now than then? Both the Presidents you mentioned were the most dictatorial looters thus far. Though I don’t believe in thuggery, you were punished deservingly by the mobs at Athulathmudali funeral at Borella cemetery. You worked for them and gave wrong counsel for your own advantage to get high positions. You couldn’t do it with Ranil because your crazy buddy Rajiwa Wijesinghe is an archenemy of RW. After RW and MS fell out you got the opportunity to get closed to MS. You made a deal with MS to help him to purchase $195 million Russian Warship (which was more than double the price of its value) and got the Ambassadorial post to Russia. Real patriot Admiral Sinnaiah was dismissed by MS because Sinnaiah opposed to purchase of the Russian ship, then Ravi Wijegunaratne became the Navy chief. Both being world class opportunists you and Wijegunaratne became hand in glove. By writing big words will not make you a good person. You are worse than them.

  • 3
    9

    “As a former ambassador, I’d say 20A would discredit and delegitimize us internationally.”

    So the system we had from 1978 until 2015 is delegitimizing us? what a joke! in order to be legitimized according to this joker we need to have a non functional govt

  • 24
    1

    Dayan J: You do realise, do you, that mopst people don’t trust you beyond how far they can throw you? Over the years you have demonstrated total loyalty to bufoons ansd despots who throw you a perk here and a junket there.

    However, on this exceedingly grave matter facing us imminently, I’m glad that you are fighting the corner of truth and democracy. Again, though, you should be less economical with the truth: Admittedly MR is more openly “benign” than the monster on the throne today, but he is not the paragon that you make him out to be. You should have sniffed him out long ago, and really, should feel ashamed to sing his praises and also say that you “worked” for him. He is every bit as monstrous as his brother-on-the throne, and brothers/sons/grandsons in waiting; only does it in an affable fashion with a cherubic face [just imagine, my grandkids will have to worship Namal’s newly born son when he is placed on the throne].

    Dayan, also, while you may be far better read than many on this page including me, I would counsel you to be less pompous and more intelligible in your writing

  • 7
    0

    It is not only the President, PM, Cabinet or the SLPP would imprison the Island, it would also be the Supreme Court that would pave way for this. I was a bit shocked to read that the Supreme court has asked the AG to submit the proposed amendments to be presented at the committee stage to the court. I wonder if the learned judges did not know that any amendment presented to the court by AG will have no value if the committee rejects it and the Parliament passes 20A without those amendments. So why did the courts ask for such a document? May be the Supreme court judges are also playing a game with time, as I understand that there is a time limit within which the courts have to give the decision.

    May be I am wrong, some one can correct me if I am.

    The most important duty the Suprement Court has is to protect the constitution. As the constitution stands today its the 19th A plus all previous amendments and the original constitution. The foundation as it stands today is the division of peoples power between three institutions – President, Parliament and the Judiciary. What 20A does is to abolish the power of the Parliament and the Judiciary and bring it under the President.

  • 6
    1

    If one travels back in time to pre-colonial times, one would find royal palaces with concubines lazing around pools, servants ushering noblemen to meeting places and sumptuous meals being laid for royal parties. The lay people, illiterate, peasants and quite unsophisticated, labour in the fields and the ramshackle foundries and rudimentary manufacturing plants. There is no electricity or phones….candles, torches and courier pigeons are evident. Then emerges the king, and all subjects get on their knees in obeisance. The rice bowls overflow with abundance; the lakes are full of fish; people praise the king for their bountiful existence. There is no sudda offering “democracy” or “justice”. Such alien concepts are unheard-of. And the people know no better. Isn’t that a grand state to be in? We sure can work on it and see…

    • 0
      0

      Take me to a village school, say for example in Sri Lanka, India, China or Japan my heart will instantly tell me which system is relatively better than the other just by looking at the children.

      Soma

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    The writer says, “We need a Presidency as in the USA, France, Mexico, South Korea, Indonesia etc. “
    +
    this wish of whom he refers to as ‘WE’ (the vocal minority of failed Leftists, files UNP, Failed Premadasa sycophants, Islamists and the NGOS) is not lost on patriotic Sri Lankans (the majority community of Sinhala Buddhists and progressive Christians),
    =
    The lines along these divisions were drawn on 5 August.
    =
    So the decent thing to do is to allow democracy to take its cause.
    =
    No science or highfaluting language will be allowed to derail the nation. 20A is a must.

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      Ratawate

      You type:

      “So the decent thing to do is to allow democracy to take its cause.”

      I agree.
      Hence you better let the clan and its b***s carriers know this truth.

      Isn’t it why 9,410,195 (58%) eligible electors out of 16,263,885 (100%) chose not to vote for the SLPP?
      Think about it if at all possible.

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        To the anonymous, wannabe constitutional lawexpert with fake Harvard and Cornell degrees, topped up by a ‘Graetian’ for chick drawing ‘poyetry’,
        I will say, ‘ultra vires’ and stop at that!

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          Ratawate,
          You seem to be a fun-loving person. I am too.
          You started right. ‘ultra vires’ – beyond one’s legal power or authority.
          Then you got infected with that virus. You said, ‘So the decent thing to do is to allow democracy to take its cause’. What cause is Democracy crazy about?!

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    Dear Dayan

    “militant rebellion against the authoritarianism” is how other Citizens of SL think of any Militant activity…………….it is considered as a serious crime against our Government…peoples government…did you kill anyone or played a part in killing anyone please??

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    “ As one who worked with two outstanding Presidents, Ranasinghe Premadasa and Mahinda Rajapaksa, I’d say the GR Presidency is in a very distinctive category, qualitatively different from both.
    As a political scientist, I’d say the emerging political model is structurally, qualitatively more dictatorial than the 1978 Jayewardene Presidency. “

    Comedy Thamai.

    As someone accused of militant rebellion against the authoritarianism of the Jayewardene-Athulathmudali regime, I’d say the political model and ideology of the GR Presidency is the most Rightwing and reactionary that has ever been experienced in Sri Lanka since 1948.
    …………………………….
    “these defined the ethos of Tamil society in the North-East and the Diaspora, during the reign of Prabhakaran and his Tigers. “
    I wonder what Thero was doing for Varathar in North East as a Minister of his Council.

    “As a former ambassador, I’d say 20A would discredit and delegitimize us internationally.
    He didn’t know what happened when Old King captured the PM position by Coup. Other than China, nobody accepted Old King as a legitimate Prime Minister.
    “With the militarization of civil administration running parallel, the 20th amendment arguably turns that elected monarchy into a military-backed dictatorship.
    It is not 20A. It is the 18A. That is why US Secretary John Kerry chased Old King out of his throne.

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      to stop italic

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    “Now, the South, Sinhala society, is going through its parabolic Prabhakaran/Tamil Eelam moment — Sinhalized of course, and processed through an electoral portal.
    ………………………..
    ………………………..
    We are building a Sinhala-Buddhist Eelam. “
    It is the Sinhala Buddhists created leader Pirapaharan. Isn’t that why Tamil Pirapaharan fought with Sinhala Hitler with foresightedness? It is the Sinhala Buddhists wanted to be Jayewardene, Dutugamunu, Hitler………. But Thero saved this Sinhala Hitler and Dutugamunu in UNHRC any arguing Humanitarian Rescue Mission Operation. The problem is all Sinhala Buddist like Thero are narcists in calling them with high names.

    “The new Constitution will construct a State that imprisons an island. The 20th amendment is the foundation stone.” No delegation possible with 20A. If the new constitutions had 20A’s properties TNA and other Tamils parties have to boycott the Constitutional making process. That will mean the 4th constitution also did not have Tamils contribution.

    “Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapaksa’s ‘Committee Report’ initiative was trying to save him and the government from: the over-accumulation of power at the very top, How did he do? By creating 18A. Is Thero thinking this essay is cradle song to put the CT readers to sleep? Stupid!

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    “With 20A and state militarization as parents, the only thing that can be born from the womb of this distorted structural matrix, this grotesque genetic modification of the state system, is a Frankenstein’s monster. “
    There was something different in 2014 and is that why Sinhalese rejected these royal clowns? Why did he left slippers in TTH and ran even when Ranil was standing and shielding Sectary John Kerry’s atomic bombs?
    “without ‘cruise control’, is the nuclear reactor at its heart. “ Dear friend reactor is embedded with cruise controls, inside its stomach. Unless by accident the reactor core part breaks and Heavy water leaks, Uranium rots are under control. For talk part of the rots remain in heavy water to be used when more power needed, rest remain in water to generate steam. Other than that stomach, there is no heart for a reactor. Recently when Tsunami broke Fukushima reactor, scientists pumped sea water to cool the rots. Heavy, instead of cooling, it deactivates the rods. Sea water could not do that job, so ocean water was contaminated and fishes became inconsumable.

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    “All previous Presidencies since 1978, and indeed all Sri Lankan leaders since 1948, practiced the politics of balance, negotiation and consensus. Thero should use some mouth wash before telling this. King is the natural growth out of Don Stephen, he who disenfranchised Tamils to make Sinhalese to vote for him, instead of Tamils for left parties. But Sinhala Buddhists are born & broken lefts so Solomon changed the equation and won the election. As long as Sinhala Buddhists are in the Island the Island is the property of Sinhala Buddhists like Ehelepola. Without any doubt, the Prophesy is, next President of Lankawe is Xin Jinping. All Sinhala Buddhists only wanted Hitler. Please don’t make all others too Modayas like your crowd. It is not subculture, but wildlife sanctuary SinhaLE Lankawe’s Tribal System –Amude wearing boss canning the crowd.
    “internal dissent could spearhead a democratization movement The existing internal dissent is only about Old King beating King and making his dynasty dream come true. That is nobody wants Old King even worse than the King. That is not a Family to create democracy. Whole crowd in the palace should to send in cargo container to Hague for Electric Chair.

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    “‘Security First’ policy by the state. “ Napoleonistic, Castroistic, Xin Jinpingistic Smart Patriotic, Social Democratic Thero’s inventions is that. Not King or nor even Royals get any credit for that.
    “Hobbesian Social Contract which guarantees security and safety” This is new talk. This will change when next time Ranil become president.
    “MR won because the choice was between him and Ranil “ Not really, because he had LTTE murder Kathirgamar and paid again to LTTE to make sure there won’t be election in North East. If Kathirgamar had become PM, then Old King would not have stood for EP election too.
    “MS beat MR because the SLFP fissured with the Bharatha Lakshman killing. That is a fraud talk. Nobody left SLFP when Lakshman was murdered. Even Hiruni was still with Old King. New King won only because of the Law & Order restoration campaign by Chandrika & Madulawe Sobitha Thero. He died by heart attack when he realized what crook he had seated on the name of Law and Order.
    NGO-neoliberals who supported the PTOMS giveaway to Prabhakaran,
    PTOMS money was not given to Leader Pirapaharan, but to Old King though “Help Yourself Hangbangtota Royals”. Leader Pirapaharan was paid from Royals accounts in the foreign accounts.

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