18 September, 2018

Blog

Northern Occupation: Foreign Ministry’s Sleight Of Hand & Lies To The World

By S. Ratnajeevan H. Hoole

Prof. S. Ratnajeevan H. Hoole

The Navy at Casuarina Beach

We in the North fear troops. It is just not Tamils. We have seen viral videos of the IGP assaulting a staff member and the Navy Commander a reporter. In a democracy, troops must be kept out of civilians lives. However, not in our democracy. In 1970, I was assaulted for no reason by a group of policemen. In the early 1980s troops on their way to buy cigarettes in three trucks swung a bicycle chain at me and other passers-by. Soon, our guardian troops were murdering us.

Last Saturday, I went to my favorite beach, Casuarina Beach, in Karainagar. During vacations, we used to bicycle the 13 miles from town regularly to go to there. The beach was there just for us. This time it was crowded with many people. It was under the care of the Navy. There were several mangy stray dogs that seemed to be looked after by the Navy. The Navy spoke to us in Sinhalese. Casuarina Beach has been commercialized with entrance fees for our car and for each passenger. Thank God there was no fee for my two dogs and cat. 

Boat rides were on offer by “Kasurina Boat Service” spilling oil into the water and spewing carbon monoxide. We were told we could not bathe the dogs because it was unhealthy for other bathers. But their mangy dogs were taking their dips in the sea and dirtying the beach, the same beach where our children played building sand castles and burying our dogs. It was all by the Piratheysiya Sabai. I spoke to the Vice Chairman and asked why use the Navy that should be confined to barracks in a democracy, especially when there are so many unemployed people in the locality. His reply was revealing: “Tamil people will not obey Tamils but will obey Sinhalese.”

Kasurina Boat Service by Navy

Numbers Game: Sinhalese Troops in the North

The Karainagar Piratheysiya Sabai’s position on the preference for Sinhalese troops in the North is rather unique. As the UNHRC reminds Sri Lanka on our obligations under Resolution 30/1, the government is in a dither. The office of Missing Persons was established only recently but the delay that accompanied its establishment is telling on the government’s commitment to recognizing Tamils as people with the same rights as the rest of the citizenry here.

The other shortcoming concerns demilitarizing Tamil areas. Poor progress has been made. However, under Foreign Minister Tilak Marapona the same damning information is being presented and it takes the form of spinning. The intention is to say “We made significant progress. Give us time again to complete the good work we are doing.” Sheer bluff!

Enjoying the Beach after Banning from the Sea

The Real Numbers

Jaffna District today has 93 naval bases occupying 2946 acres (exceeding 12 sq. km), 54 army bases and 1 air force base occupying 1000 acres. These together with the 30 police stations rule us with an iron hand. However what they are doing is not clear except for bullying people at Casuarina Beach and stopping motorists to make money. Our fishermen have to pass the naval bases into the deeper seas for their fishing. 

It was recently that the police announced that they have brought the sword wielding Ava Group under control by arresting 50 of them. Yet, on 22 Aug., in the Suthumalai,  Inuvil and Thaavady areas 12 sword wielding men had arrived on 5 motorbikes and attacked householders in three houses. On the 20th, a doctor’s house was attacked. In Mannar, 22nd’s reports today say that a boat of 6 persons from India had sunk but all rescued. Unconfirmed information is that the boat was rammed by the Navy but the fishermen say their boat and the navy boat collided. The drugs trade is hitting record heights despite the heavy presence of troops. The police with their 178 stations having 50,000 armed policemen are unable to say how any amount of Ganja may be bought in Jaffna. If that is protection, no thanks. Despite this force, the government is unable to establish even a semblance of law and order except to prevent my children from enjoying our beaches as I did. 

As the international community asks our government about demilitarization which we promised under Resolution 30/1, the numbers from Jaffna seem commendable, but that was under compulsion. Jaffna is unique in that most lands occupied by the forces are private lands with deeds. These are estimated to constitute 90% of Jaffna lands. A case initiated by Mavai Senathirajah, the ITAK Secretary General in the High Court led to the judgement that they ought to be released to their owners. The government had no choice.

The story is very different in the Kilinochchi, Mannar, Vavuniya and Mullaitivu Districts  where private lands are less than 25%. The rest comes as reserved lands for forest, wildlife, irrigation etc. These are occupied by the forces although they are not intended for them and the reservations are intended for civilians – even the jungles of Wilpattu which are for our edification watching wildlife in their natural habitat.

In Mullaitivu only some 22% of the lands are private. Eight ponds and two crematoria are on army camps.  In Mannar, 12800 acres of coastal lands are claimed by the Navy. The World Bank asked for a mere 3000 acres for livelihood projects for the people and Rs. 3 billion is ready to be used. However, the project cannot start because even the 3000 acres will not be released. It shows the two faces of the government. One thinks up these generous projects to show the world that it cares for Tamils, and the other blocks them. This project cannot start because troops will not budge

In truth, even today Jaffna Peninsula has 4,507 acres occupied by the forces. There are 9,564 families with 33,286 members awaiting resettlement. Of these 580 families with 2,204 members are in temporary shelters awaiting resettlement. It is this truth that the government wants to hide from the international community.

Manal Aaru

When the cry for resettlement is so loud and heart-rending, the government has created a separate District Secretary’s division of 108 sq. km in Mullaitivu reserved for Sinhalese settlers. This is the dreaded Manal Aaru Division which was depopulated of Tamils through massacres by the army in 1984 to settle Sinhalese in what is now Weli Oya. In better days, in 1965, it is good to recall, it was PM Dudley Senanayake who allocated these lands to Tamils of the area. The recipients, in times when we had no bulldozers to clear lands, cleared them by hand for cultivation for two-season paddy.

As these Tamils cultivated these lands, the UNP lost the 1970 elections and the new left government created what it called the Land Army of unemployed youth for whom the lands were repossessed. The consent of the Tamils who worked hard on the land was never sought. 

However, Tamils there believed that they would get their lands back with the next change of government. Notwithstanding, when the UNP returned in 1977, it started an open prison in Thimpulaakal in the Kalkuda Electorate.  Mr. Devanayagam, MP, as the only person from the UNP to win a seat in that area, prevailed on J.R. Jayawardene to  shift the prison since the locals feared it. The Sinhalese prisoners from there were the first colonists to settle in Manal Aaru, now Weli Oya. 

Many opposed the move then. Sriskantharaya, President of the Jaffna University Students’ Union, launched an attack on the guards of the Open Prison. That attack was used to justify attacks on Tamils of the area. Following this in the years 1983 and 1984, surrounding villages were depopulated of Tamils. Established farms serving as homes for people displaced from the tea estates, namely Dollar Farm, Kent Farm, and Railway Farm each with 3000 acres of farmland were taken over. These have been subdivided into 25 acre plots and given to Sinhalese, including to Minister Nimal Sripala de Silva’s sister. Everyone profits from Tamil misery. 

That take-over for Sinhalese settlers is continuing today at Kokkulaai,  Pokkuthoduvai, Nayaaru, Karunaattukerni, Palampaasi, and Thenmaravadi.  Outside this region 72% of the land even today is jungle. As such they belong to departments for forest reserves, animal reserves, etc. Only the remaining 28% may be used for humans. Even this little land has been grabbed by troops.

As a result, today the army controls much agricultural land. Further 8 ponds are under military control. Based on information provided by the LLRC, in Mullaitivu there are 110 acres of private lands, and 7,937 acres of government land under the military. Even that information has been questioned. In Oddisuttaan Piradeysiya Secretariat area 8,400 acres, from Karupattmurippu to Iranimadu 3,500 acres, and near Muruhandy (West of A9) 1750 acres are with the army.  

Lying to the World

As the next sessions at UNHRC near, the government is preparing to spin these numbers. Minister for Foreign Affairs is reportedly touring the North personally asking for acreage under occupation. The trick is to say that so many acres out of so many acres of occupied private land have been released, when most of the occupied land is in the reserves for departments. The land continues to be occupied.

The enthusiasm in spinning seems to border on lying. We know for a fact that according to Marapona’s figures 991 acres in Mullaitivu are occupied. The same GA responsible for the data, responding to a request under RTI has stated 1331 acres are under occupation. What happened to the difference of 300 acres? Figures given by Ms. Sriskantharajah, MP for Mulaitivu  in 2017 suggest that the figure for occupied lands is upwards of 35,000 acres. The same was confirmed by Mr. Raviharan of the NPC.

From sources friendly then to the LTTE, we also know that 3500 acres in Iranaimadu, 1200 acres in Viswamadu and 2200 acres in Kepapilavu constituted LTTE farms (pannai as they called them). I know from people who travelled West of A9 into the jungles that they are still occupied by the army and air force. Why are these not listed in the GA’s figures?

Likewise, in Mannar even as the government claims that its forces occupy 640 acres, the GA responding to RTI requests says 2,346 acres are occupied by troops. Even this is untrue because, like in Mullaitivu, occupied lands account for more than 8000 acres.

Similar discrepancies exist in Kilinochchi between government pronouncements and RTI revelations.

The Truth and Democracy

There is no terrorism in the North except for the bullying armed forces and bribe-seeking police. In a democracy, we expect the government to be truthful and accountable. These prevarications diminish us as a democracy and cause severe problems at the Election Commission in registering displaced persons in their real homes even as refugees now well-settled in new places are bused to vote in their former homes. We are no democracy when people live under the military.

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Latest comments

  • 7
    6

    Usha Candappa makes a valid point. Well done Usha.

    I think seaparists and Hoole supporters (including Hoole himself?) put number of posts here supporting Hoole. this is damaging to democracy and free speech.

    • 4
      2

      Many thanks for this article Dr. Hoole, that shows that the military business economic development model started by US citizen Gotabaya Jarapassa is alive and well under their puppet, Bondscam Ranil Wickramasinghe.
      TNA and Tamils should protest outside US embassy and ask US Govt. to stop militarizing Lanka (against China) and stop all the help it is giving the SL military and Navy to occupy Tamil’s lands, while bullshitting about Human Rights in UNHRC “cesspit” in Geneva.

      US is sending its Marines “Pacific Angels” (Ha, Ha, Ha) to do Fake Humanitarian Operations (like Gota’s war against LTTE was a Humanitarian Op!). and Fake Disaster prepardness in Lanka and setting up an Indian Ocean military intelligence Hub (hah), when in fact US is NOW causing the biggest Disaster of Militarization of Lanka and Indian Ocean, while supporting the Lankan military to occupy civilian Lands in post-war northeast, while weaponizing religion – by promoting Buddhist and Muslim clashes to protect its puppets – both, Bondscam Ranil Wickramasinghe and Gota Jarapassa in order to stop China’s growth. Meanwhile MCC and IMF crashing Lankan Ruppee and causing massive national debt trap to get worse.

  • 4
    2

    ,”for people displaced from the tea estates, namely Dollar Farm, Kent Farm, and Railway Farm each with 3000 acres of farmland were taken over”

    Professor, thank you for bringing to notice the plight of the poor estate Tamils displaced and chased away from our Hill country homes even suckling babies. We we’re constantly on the move till these farms.

    We did tea best. Our jobs were given to a people who brought the quality of tea so down. That was a land grab and colonization too of the estate indian line room plots. We lost all that we had, earned by blood and sweat. An act more cruel than that of our colonial masters.

    • 2
      5

      quality of tea? The Tamil unions in estates work for Indian companies in deliberately bringing down the tea qualities.

    • 0
      1

      Veerasamy, You talk of land grab!! You came here to pluck tea and go back. It is not the fault of the Sinhalese that you were brought here by the British and that your country India rejected you. Do you also want a separate state for the Plantation Tamils? I am just waiting to see how many more years its going to take before the Plantation Tamils too start claiming that they are indigenous to this island and therefore they also want a separate state. You must know that the Sinhalese did not ask you to come here, it was the British who brought you here, and the Indians rejected you, so you got dumped on the Sinhalese.

  • 2
    8

    Northern Occupation! What is this rubbish? No Southern, Eastern, Western, or any other Occupation?

    Simply wasting time to discuss useless garbage.

    • 8
      4

      When an armed force belonging to one ethnic group who do not concur with the rights and aspiration of another ethnic group and tries to impose their will in the lands belonging to the other ethnic group, it is an occupying force. Sri Lanka army which is almost wholly Sinhala, carrying out the wishes of Sinhala people against the wishes of Tamils living in their traditional homelands fits into this category, especially when they are being accused of murder and ethnic cleansing of Tamils.

      • 4
        3

        I agree, Dr. Gnana Sankaralingam .

  • 7
    2

    R Hoole‘s article is fundamental for the concept of militarization in the North. I miss however a political analysis of this concept.

    • 4
      1

      Prof Schalk, here it is: Short answer is the New Cold war between Trumpland and China in Sri Lanka,
      The military business economic development model started by US citizen Gotabaya Jarapassa is alive and well under their other puppet, Bondscam Ranil Wickramasinghe.
      TNA and Tamils should protest outside US embassy and ask Trump Govt. to stop militarizing Lanka and all the help it is giving the SL military and Navy to occupy Tamil’s lands, while bullshitting about Human Rights in UNHRC “cesspit” in Geneva.

      US is sending its Marines “Pacific Angels” (Ha, Ha, Ha) to do Fake Humanitarian Operations (like Gota’s war against LTTE was a Humanitarian Op!). and Fake Disaster prepardness in Lanka and setting up an Indian Ocean military intelligence Hub (hah).
      But fact is that it is the Trumpland that is now causing the biggest Disaster of post-war Militarization of Lanka and Indian Ocean region, while supporting the Lankan military to occupy civilian Lands in post-war northeast, while weaponizing religion – by promoting Buddhist and Muslim clashes to protect its puppets – both, Bondscam Ranil Wickramasinghe and Gota Jarapassa in order to stop China’s growth. Meanwhile, right wing MCC and IMF crashing Lankan Ruppee and causing massive national debt trap to get worse and cause more conflict and destabilization.

    • 4
      0

      R Hoole is just an electrical engineer who has given us some observations. He is not qualified to do in depth political analysis of such concepts. We await someone like your good self to take on that task!

  • 2
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    Choi I do not care free speech and democracy but the unitary status of our nation. Is it under threat from Hoole type articles?

  • 6
    6

    As a writer, I too agree Hoole is dangerous not only to Sinhalese but Tamils too. Earlier piece he antagonised India (Dr Balachandran) after India was gracious enough to invite him to a ceremony in Jaffna. Hoole ought to know restrict his pen. Hoole sat in the front row then even criticised the food served.

    • 3
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      Minolika Rathwatte,
      .
      I agree with you that, “Hoole ought to know restrict his pen.
      .
      He has here.
      .
      I have to ask if you read and understood the “Earlier piece”: This:
      .

      https://www.colombotelegraph.com/index.php/indian-consulate-general-buys-into-jaffna-universitys-communalism/
      .
      You will find that I have been extremely critical of that article as a whole, but not of what you are talking about.
      .
      Seriously, do you understand the meaning of “a scrumptious brunch”? By writing such stuff as you have, you are letting down all Sinhalese. We will get branded as “uneducated fools”.
      .
      https://en.wiktionary.org/wiki/scrumptious
      .
      Please check Dictionary meaning and then have the grace to apologise.
      .
      For other things that I have said about Dr Balachandran, please see the comments that I made ten days ago, in response to that article.
      .
      If so concerned about how Buddhism has lost ground in certain places, please look at this:
      .
      http://eptoday.com/the-edge-of-the-chasm-threats-to-maldivian-democracy/
      .
      That was a 100% Buddhist country that is 100% Muslim now. It may be 100% Islamist soon. Elections on the 23rd of September. Likely to be rigged. Hoole monitored elections in Pakistan; who knows, he may have to do the same in the Maldives. Encourage him to impartially show up any fraud there. Yourself, follow daily from here:
      .
      https://maldivesindependent.com/politics/maldives-elections-body-publishes-voters-registry-140567
      .
      Hoole also must start following right now, if there is a chance of him going. It’ll be too late if, when voting takes place, more than half of opposition supporters have been disfranchised.

    • 2
      0

      Minolika: A writer should also read. I think he said the food was delicious.

  • 5
    4

    Hoole through his writing has done much damage to Tamil polity and psychy. I hope he will watch his words in the future.

  • 2
    2

    I am reminded of what Shankar (commentator here) told me when talking about British engineered demographic change in central and east by bringing Tamils from India and settling them in Sri Lanka. His excuse was the lands where indians were settled were jungle lands, therefore Sinhalese cannot complain. Putting that aside, I think the issues faced by the Tamil civilians need to be looked at with utmost urgency.

    The government should release lands as much as they can after considering the security situation in the province. If there are only 2,204 civilians remaining without lands, I think we have made tremendous progress from having 300000+ refugees in 2009.

  • 11
    1

    I am surprised that Mr. Hoole missed out the Chinese “archeologists” in the Casuarina beach. Don’t worry Mr. Hoole! The Sinhalese troops will not be here in the North for long. Sri Lanka is increasingly being recolonized by the Chinese, Indians and Americans. The Indians, Americans and Japanese will coordinate their interventionist actions to counter Beijing. Thanks to Mahinda, Sri Lankan independence will recede just as certainly as the rupee will plummet. Do visit Colombo, Trincomalee or Hambantota to understand..

    • 1
      0

      Thanks to Ranil, NOT Mahinda. It was RW as always paved the way for Japanese, Americans and Indians to play against the Chinese within Sri Lanka. MR always knew the limit. It was NOT MR who gave away Hambanthota to Chinese but RW.

  • 3
    1

    Sri Lanka defeated the LTTE in 2009.
    1. In 2009 SL had 300000+ Tamil refugees in North. How many of them remain in camps with no where to go? What has government done? How many of them have been resettled? Now Hoole says 2,204 remains without homes. So does not that show the government has been doing a good job?

    2. How many military personal were in North in 2009 after the end of war? How many remain now. These are the questions that should be raised when reading this piece. Has not the government done anything? Is Hoole simply venting his anger because his pets were not allowed in?

  • 3
    1

    Gnana Sankaralingam,

    May I know the special wishes of Tamil masses? Sri Lanka belonging to all masses living here. No home land for particular race and it is homeland for everybody living here and at the same time its majority race is Sinhalese and majority religion is Buddhism. This is the reality and accept it whether like or not.
    All these garbage such as Homeland, Elam are forced up on the masses by megalomaniac so called Tamil political leaders and some individuals such as Hoole.
    Police and Armed Forces have members from all races living in Sri Lanka considered as their Motherland.
    Besides, all these garbage comments of Elam, Homeland,federal, self determination were annihilated on the banks of Nanthikadal at the same time of the annihilation of LTTE Terrorist.
    I am very much confident that Tamil masses are really prudent now than ever before not to get deceived by this kind of garbage comments by Hoole and Gnana Shankaralingam.

    • 1
      2

      Nimal Tissass Wijethunga

      “May I know the special wishes of Tamil masses? “

      There is no such special wishes of Tamil masses however I believe you may have special educational needs and suffer from unspecified disabilities.

      In the mean time please refer to the articles from 1 to 30 of Universal Declaration of Human Rights which equally applies to each and every persons of this world.
      http://www.un.org/en/universal-declaration-human-rights/

      I suppose since you are a special need case you need not to worry too much about “others”.

    • 5
      0

      Dear Nimal Tissa Wijethunga,
      .
      You seem to be concerned about the decline of Buddhism in certain societies. The Maldives was 100% Buddhist, once upon a time. Now they consider Buddhism to be “idol worship”.
      .
      Their language is still very close to Sinhala. They have no special word for “idols” in general. The word that they have is “Bodu”. Every island (except crowded Male) has a mound of earth – referred to as the “dagaba”. Get it? There were some ancient Buddha statues in the National Museum in Male. They had been preserved as part of the National Heritage. One of the first things that happened when Nasheed was illegally removed from power (about ten years ago – please check yourself) was that all those statues were smashed to bits.
      .

      Some resort owners are very rich. That wealth never gets to the common people; straight in to Swiss Bank accounts. Sri Lanka is one of the poorest countries in the world. Some Sri Lankans now find employment in the Maldives; they take tiny statues of the Buddha for their private meditation and veneration. When found by Customs, they are smashed to bits in the presence of the owner.
      .
      Sad, but statues are worth little in real terms, people matter.
      .
      You have rightly said that, ” Sri Lanka belonging to all masses living here.” Don’t you think that this world really belongs to all life forms to be found here? Wouldn’t Gautama Buddha agree with that?
      .
      Please do some serious thinking.

  • 2
    1

    “It was under the care of the Navy.”

    What do you mean Professor Hoole? The navy was taking care of its pockets only there and bird watching. Sri Lanka forces have world record for worse things.

    The ticketing man said only ticketed area is safe. They said if we drown the navy will bring their boats and save us. So we bought tickets.

    But when we got into sea the navy spoke roughly in Sinhalese to move away to far side of the ery vnarrow sea area permitted for people. We did not understand their country Sinhala. Then a very angry old Tamil man came towards us.He translated the scolding in Tamil and threatened to break our phones if we took pictures of the the navy or boats.

    It was tension. The mothers standing on the sea shore were counting their sons all the time and looking very anxious.

    No girl wanted to sea bath in front of the navy men. The navy were young and did not look like from decent family. The girls and ladies at the beach did not go near the sea. They stood in circles on the shore in their normal clothes. They were scared to look at the navy and were only whispering.

    The navy did not understand even little Tamil.So I told my children to stay near their mother. I said if they are drowning and dying we don’t know to call for help in Sinhala that time.

    It was a scary experience for my wife and daughters and little son. She says with many navy idling there Kasuarina beach is still not safe for us. They might drown us if we are alone like the doctor’s son. We came home after a little time.

    We feel cheated by the government of Sri Lanka. Lost money, wasted a holiday day.

    • 0
      1

      Visahan,
      .
      I understand you perfectly. Have I told you that there is little to see in the shallow lagoon off the Casuarina beach? I’ve been there twice.
      .
      Sri Lanka does have some decent beaches where one can laze around, and “bury the trustful family dog”, and perhaps build sandcastles the way they used to in the British-witten picture books that we had as children.
      .
      The Maldivian sea was a revelation to me, when I donned a mask and snorkel. SUBA {Self-contained Underwater Breathing Apparatus) Diving I just couldn’t afford. That was thirty years ago, when everything was quite laid back in Dhivehi Raj. There were a few local girls whose Tee-shirts bore the legend, “Diving is the second best experience”. Some of them used to ask me in class the next day, if I remembered the wording, and then – “Sir, do you know what the best experience is?”
      .
      I wonder how the Islamists have dealt with them?
      .
      Anyway, the second time I went there, I took fins and snorkelling with me – just to show off to the other in our party. Some of them did try the mask on; there was not much to see but these Navy guys sensed that there was something to it, and one said, with superior entitlement, “mata oka one” [I want that].
      .
      I, as rudely refused to give it.
      .
      I should like to know what readers think of my behaviour.

      • 2
        0

        Dear Sinhala_Man , It is not the number of times you have been to Casuarina that matters.
        .
        Once, I took a Sinhalese family, there. Casuarina is the ONLY site that Jaffna could boast of!
        .
        Isn’t there an option other than having a Sinhala-only-speaking Naval personnel to guard the beach. Why not give the locals an opportunity to earn a living.

        • 0
          0

          Dear Thappu,
          .

          Please take my comment to mean that governments have been very unfair by you. I’ve also been to the “Marble Beach” in Trincomalee, and find that there again the beach has been stolen by the Navy.
          .
          I’m trying to confirm that you have much to complain about. I’m sorry that I’m unable to do more.

  • 2
    2

    Nimal Tissass Wijethunga

    “May I know the special wishes of Tamil masses? “

    There is no such special wishes of Tamil masses however I believe you may have special educational needs and suffer from unspecified disabilities.

    In the mean time please refer to the articles from 1 to 30 of Universal Declaration of Human Rights which equally applies to each and every persons of this world.
    http://www.un.org/en/universal-declaration-human-rights/

    I suppose since you are a special need case you need not to worry too much about “others”.

  • 2
    2

    Native Veddah alias, Angoda Veddah alias Kala Veddah seems to be requiring special medical or psychatric treatment to understand how to answer logically rather than mention something not relevant and mostly garbage.

    Sinhala Man
    Buddhism lost in some places by the sword of the Religions used wars to spread the dominance.
    LTTE and other racist thugs tried it in Sri Lanka and this time by bullets, bombs etc and got annihilated. The story is same if they try it in the future as well.

    • 1
      0

      Dear Nimal Tissa Wijethunga,
      .
      The way you have tried to answer me is hardly convincing. Could you please be more specific about how you intend annihilated those whom you label as “racist thugs”? Is such talk in keeping with the Buddha Darma?
      .
      I know that a question like that puts you in a spot. It will not be easy for you to answer such a question. However honest you are, you will find it difficult to answer that question.
      .
      I’d like to have your response, please It may be some consolation for you that I promise not to mock your answer. We are often faced with dilemmas. Outwitting the antagonist is not really going to take us forward to the world of peace and harmony that we all desire.

      • 2
        0

        Trying to repair the bold
        one

        two

        three
        maybe now
        lets see

        • 2
          0

          Dear Punchi Point,
          .
          Congratulations, and thanks for the “public service” performed by you. How did you get it done? I have here put only two words, ‘public service’ above, in to bold.
          .
          It was I who was responsible for the original breach; what I have come to realise is that the last word in a comment ought never to be in bold. I must have made a mistake in “unbolding”.
          .
          “Bold” and “italics” should never be over-used. It is selfish, and taking the comments as a whole defeats the whole purpose of the website providing the means to emphasise a point. I know that I have been over-using since discovering how to do it about two months ago.
          .
          Thanks.

  • 0
    0

    It seems Vellala Tamils are attacking Karawe Hoole from every angle. Usha Candappa started the whole mess. She is not even pure Tamil.

    • 1
      0

      Jeyaluxmi Muthuthamby

      “It seems Vellala Tamils are attacking Karawe Hoole from every angle.”

      How do you know he is a Karawe and even if he is why should it bother him or his opponents?

      Just because he has Christian names does it make him a Katawe?
      Does the name Solomon West Ridgeway Dias Bandaranaike make him a Karawe?

    • 0
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      You got my caste wrong.

      As a Christian I am asanga, lower than the lowest caste. Seems like you have not read Manu.

      • 5
        0

        Jeevan,

        Playing for sympathy – aren’t you?!

        You had previously too implied that this nasty caste system is only a Navalar promoted curse of the Hindus, and not of the Christians. And then Usha exposed you on that, claiming to being a High caste vellalar Christian. How do you reconcile between her view of Christians and yours?.

        Also, you yourself have previously made sure to pinpoint that in fact your Hindu ancestry is of the highest caste. Either you believe in caste or you don’t – you can’t have it both ways!

        As your sincerest and well-meaning fan, Sinhala_Man advised you, you will do yourself a favour not writing about caste, among other things. Can you not see that your writings have only progressively (a) induced and encouraged divisive sentiments, and (b) diminish rather than strengthen your own credibility? Do you still feel compelled to write more in the same vein?

        • 0
          0

          The not so analytical hindu folks say such false things about christians. If Hoo le gave his ancestry before this Luxmy is deliberately slandering the people of Jesus who in the face of hate speech remain christians.

          Kumar R seems to have no issue with her slander but targets Hoo le. A strange fellow indeed.

          • 0
            0

            Dilima,

            Another “mouth piece” unleashed as Hoole is incapable of defending his own thoughts and words! Shame, especially for a wanna-be intellectual cum champion of social issues!
            .
            My issue with Jeevan is based on what Jeevan says – if you have an issue with what Luxmy says, be my guest – take her up any which way you like! Don’t try to use Luxmy as an excuse to help Jeevan hide his shame of impotency in taking responsibility for his own words!
            .
            Intellectual?! Bah humbug!!

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    Choi Dharmadasa, (nice name)

    As a sensible commentator of these columns I have observered very carefully what you always comment, this time you have backed Usha Candappa. You are wrong because Usha is neither Sinhala nor Tamil – a Maharashtraran. They are here to suck our blood. Discreetly they like to cause a rift between Sinhalese and Tamils. So watch what you write.

  • 1
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    Dear Sinhala Man,

    It is very clear in the history that Religions started dominance by wars and because of that Buddhism has lost ground in some places. Besides, as Buddhists they never start or fought wars to stop the rampaging religious wars and therefore, they were at the receiving end and in the process lost many of the places where Buddhism was well established.

    We Buddhist in Sri Lanka has learned huge lessons from these historical facts and fought wars or at least resisted whenever we got the understanding that anybody challenges the fabrication of the country and the Buddhism as the religion. Besides, it is our legitimate right as well.

    Hope that my view point is clear to you. For your information, this what happened in the past and going to happen if same scenario is created.

    Now it is up to you to mock my answer or not and whatever it is I do not mind as I am not going to mock, but, I will answer.

    • 2
      0

      Yes, your point of view is clear, but yet, unacceptable!
      .
      “Legitimate right of self-defence” and such like are legalistic arguments. They are rejected by the Buddha Dharma which operates at a higher level. However, I wouldn’t expect everybody to be operating at that highest level, the way Sri Sanga Bo did.
      .
      Mohamed, the founder of Islam was a great political leader, and he advocated the spread of religion, by whatever means. Buddhism and Christianity were never aimed at establishing “Political Power” and “States”. They are personal philosophies, and meant to improve the individual. Both were written down a few centuries after they were first preached. By then, they had begun to promise “rewards”: “Nirvana” and “Eternal Life” after death. I don’t expect there to be any “next life”.
      .
      I don’t want to pretend to be a “know-all”. Of the major religions, I don’t understand Hinduism, but there definitely is a streak of “non-violence” In Hinduism. Jews believe themselves to be “chosen people”, but, by virtue of that, there are stricter rules for themselves. Not all Jews are Zionists. What Israel has been doing, from the word go, is unjust.
      .
      Having said all that, what militant Buddhism is doing is self-defeating. Buddhism was respected, as no other religion, a century ago. Since then, it has sacrificed the moral high ground.
      .
      Let me say more only after you have responded.

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    The Nothern occupation started in the late 13th century when the Pandyans invaded and occupied the nothern part of the Sinhalese island. If we had a better naval defence back then, how different our situation would be now……. Tamils would be living happily in their homeland in Tamilnadu, and the Sinhalese will be spared of so many troubles …..

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      punchi

      you got that one wrong. Chandrabanu,a thai king conquered jaffna in the 13th century.Even now there are names such as Chavakacheri(javakacheri).He was after Lord buddha’s relics.So he attacked the south from jaffna.The pandyas who were allies of the sinhalese came and killed him and installed his son on the jaffna throne. The son too attacked the south and pandyas came again and defeated him.The pandyan military commander then installed himself as the aryachakravarty of jaffna kingdom.So it was not the naval forces,but a poor lack of ground forces of the sinhalese that was the cause of having to get down their allies to get rid of the thai invader.Who knows what would have happened if chandrabanu or his son had sucessfully invaded the south and taken the relics.The pandyas were really not interested in the north because their hands were full fighting off the muslims.They secured it for themselves because the sinhalese were too weak to stop the thais.

  • 0
    1

    It is very clear Jaffna or any other area of Sri Lanka never ever a homeland of a particular race. SJV Chelva to Prabhakaran of LTTE, So called Tamil political leaders and racist thugs in these discussion forums are liars and interpreted history with full of lies only.

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    Dear Punch Point,
    .
    I fear that you are going entirely on a “Mahavamsa Version” of History, written from a Sinahala point of view. It denigrates even Mahayana Buddhism. I don’t know Pali, and I haven’t read it all; I think that I understand the gist.
    .
    I looked for this modern book on History, but couldn’t find it in the bookshops. I don’t buy many books, now-a-days, but I think this important. This review gives the gist of it:
    .
    http://tamilnation.co/books/Eelam/indrapala.htm
    .
    I’m sorry if this is the second or third time that you have had me giving this to you. Doesn’t this seem a more rational account than most others? Looking at our physical appearance, isn’t it obvious that we are mainly of South Indian origin? Perhaps, Indrapala’s History has to be improved upon.
    .
    If you go on the Mahavamsa account, don’t we all have to go back to India. Vijaya must have been one of the first “Kallathoniyas”. No, I don’t advocate that, nor is border-less travel a practical proposition today. We have to do quite a bit of work on secular laws to regulate life in our country.
    .
    The first Buddhists in Sri Lanka were probably Tamil-speaking. Why are there so few Tamil-speaking Buddhists today?
    .
    Gautama Buddha was a man, who would be appalled at people killing each other over his relics. Our veneration of those relics, our using the image of the Buddha to fix our minds on lofty thoughts, is are personal acts which are valuable. The moment we make these public issues, we are at fault, and see for yourself the huge mess we have made of our country.
    .
    Our urgent need is to throw aged and corrupt politicians out of power and run our country cleanly.

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      sinhala_man

      you hit the nail on the head.If tat is done all these other so called issues will fade away.Politicians would like to keep these issues alive to distract attention from themselves.We too have two leaders who should be in the geriatric ward,sam &wig.

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    Dear Wannihami.
    .
    Dogs of all sorts:
    .
    Our family used to keep dogs long ago, and I know what endearing, loving, and faithful companions they can be. I no longer keep them, because looking after them involves so much work.
    .
    It is good for children to keep pets. It helps them understand that those animals are also individuals who experience joy and sorrow. However, we also have powers of reasoning. I, therefore, try to modify the love that most humans have for tail-wagging puppies. There are far too many stray dogs in the country, and I think that there numbers should be cotrolled in some way. Spaying bitches would be the most acceptable, but it needs resources. We don’t have many resources any more, thanks to the corrupt politicians and the irrational and gullible voters who elect the guys.
    .
    It looks as though Jeevan Hoole has quite big and impressive dogs; Rajan has a mongrel, which he feeds with fish. On the whole these Hooles are vegetarians, but Rajan is the most extreme. He’s an uncompromising vegan. I eat almost everything that I’m not allergic to. I’m allergic to beef. I feel that we must respect differences in this matter.
    .
    Before you say anything more on the subject of dogs (which is not central to this article), please see for yourselves how Rajan Hoole and I strongly disagreed on this subject, in comments on an article about dogs written by a person whom many of you would describe as a Sinhalese and a Buddhist: I don’t think that she would want any such label stuck on her:
    .
    https://www.colombotelegraph.com/index.php/addressing-the-issue-of-community-dogs-in-sri-lanka/
    .
    I think it true to say that expressing frank and sincere views is not appreciated. Hypocrites are tolerated in our society.

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    Dear Wannihami (whom I didargee with, and Shankar, whom I agree with)
    .
    Dogs of all sorts:
    .
    Our family used to keep dogs long ago, and I know what endearing, loving, and faithful companions they can be. I no longer keep them, because looking after them involves so much work.
    .
    It is good for children to keep pets. It helps them understand that those animals are also individuals who experience joy and sorrow. However, we also have powers of reasoning. I, therefore, try to modify the love that most humans have for tail-wagging puppies. There are far too many stray dogs in the country, and I think that there numbers should be cotrolled in some way. Spaying bitches would be the most acceptable, but it needs resources. We don’t have many resources any more, thanks to the corrupt politicians and the irrational and gullible voters who elect the guys.
    .
    It looks as though Jeevan Hoole has quite big and impressive dogs; Rajan has a mongrel, which he feeds with fish. On the whole these Hooles are vegetarians, but Rajan is the most extreme. He’s an uncompromising vegan. I eat almost everything but am allergic to beef. I feel that we must respect differences in this matter. Vegans would be justified in waging war against us sinners, but fortunately they are humble and peace-loving. Also, they are few!
    .
    Before you say anything more on the subject of dogs (which is not central to this article), please see for yourselves how Dr Rajan Hoole and I strongly disagreed on this subject, in comments on an article about dogs written by a person whom many of you would describe as a Sinhalese and a Buddhist: I don’t think that she would want any such label stuck on her:
    .
    https://www.colombotelegraph.com/index.php/addressing-the-issue-of-community-dogs-in-sri-lanka/

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    The hostilities will between Tamils and Sinhalese will not end until the Tamil leaders and the Tamil elitists stop demonizing the Sinhalese and the armed forces, and until the Sinhalese elitists stop their crocodile tears which are politically motivated.. There are army camps in the south, Sinhalese and Muslims and may be Tamils too live next to them and they don’t care. After 26 years of a bloody war Sri Lankan government has a responsibility to keep a strong military presence in the North, albeit in the camps. The Casuarina beach is a red herring, I ‘ve been their many times and the Navy keeps their distance, they make the place safe for everyone, no hooligans, no alcohol, no drugs, safe swimming etc, and the ladies and girls in our party never felt threatened by the Navy presence. If at all only negative thing I saw was the attitude of the private boat owners who were Tamil and were equally rude to both Tamil and Sinhala customers.

  • 1
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    Part One

    Thank you, wannihami, for a reasonably balanced comment. The Sinhalese and the Tamils have to stop demonising one another.
    .
    Yes, in the aftermath of the War (it is good to note that not many call it a “Humanitarian Operation” any more!), it is inevitable that the pulling out of troops will be gradual. The problem is that so few articulate Sinhalese seem to think demobilisation necessary at all. The spirit is one of Triumphalism.

    State Sponsored colonisation is going on apace with monks taking the lead, staking their claims on what they claimed were pansal gamas (are there such things? I know that there were ninda gamas, and devala gamas – I’m not sure about the terminology), granted by Kings of Old. I was with a group of Pan-Sinhala retired teachers, and they were happy enough with what they were told – and some were going to convey to the destitute of Uva the kind invitations held out to them. Only I, and a husband and wife who are card carrying members of the Social Equality Party led by Dr Wije Dias, were appalled, and made one or two moderating comments.
    .
    The sea bath was at Pasekudah. One particularly racist guy, who’d been befriending me since I was generally anti-establishment, began complaining to me that he was hearing far too much of Tamil around him. Even the majority of others were not responding adequately to him – their views were much more moderate, and they found the guy oppressive.

  • 1
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    Well, it can’t be helped. With some guys one just can’t talk sense at all. Jim Softy who calls himself JD now; Mrs Udubedawa: and there are some “Tamils” – only Iget their names mixed up. Most of the time I disagree with wannihami, Champa, and Grandma RTF, but I can occasionally agree with them. I once found myself agreeing even with that Lieutenant Shamal Perera. Dr. Gnana Sankaralingam has modified his comments somewhat, since hurling insults at me three years ago. I’m a bit aggrieved that he hasn’t yet addressed me directly, despite my feeling that many of my comments are reasonable. Many may be quite just in disagreeing with me.
    .
    Anyway, the guy who had a distaste for Pasekudah has been avoiding our trips since then. Actually this time we went South. Kanneliya was wonderful – if you are able to appreciate nature in her quieter moods. The Martin Wickremasinghe Museum was something new for me. Most of his books have been translated in to English. I hope Tamil readers are noting these as places worth visiting. Maduwanwela walawwe was not so great – ah, but there was the unique Mattala Airport. A must see, to understand the follies of the Rajapaksas.
    .
    The effort to move away from racism must come from both sides. It must finally lead to the election of a more acceptable President in 2020. Nagananda Kodituwakku would seem the best bet now that Kumar Sangakkara has been demolished by Grusha Andrews. We need somebody with appeal and charisma.
    .
    We’ve been talking about Mangala Samaraweera and Sajith Premadasa recently. Definitely an improvement on the geriatrics, as shankar has said.

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