26 January, 2021

Blog

Pied Pipers Of Sri Lanka

By Tisaranee Gunasekara

“He came in a dream
He seduced everybody in the land
The fire in his eyes
And the fear was a weapon in his hand
So they let him play
Play their minds away”
The Piper (ABBA)

In his penultimate photographs, 12 year old Balachandran Pirapaharan glances away from the camera. The empty look in his averted eyes, the slump of his plump young shoulders speaks of defeat and of a loss which is beyond hope, and beyond fear.

He is alone, he is helpless and he knows that.

Unlike his older brother and sister, Balachandran never joined the Tigers, never bore arms against the Lankan army. If he was executed in cold blood, it was not because of anything he did, but because of his ethnicity and parentage. It’s collective punishment taken to a brutal barbaric extreme.

If Colombo ordered Balachandran’s execution, then there is something toxically rotten in the state of Sri Lanka. If we, the Sinhalese, are not affected and outraged by the possibility of such a crime, or if we lack the courage to condemn it, then we are a nation lost. We will not know peace or development. We will look on apathetically, as other fanatics commit other crimes in our name and push this already bloodied land from one violent crisis to the next.

And the last laugh will belong to Vellupillai Pirapaharan.

***

In Sri Lanka, protests outside embassies happen only with the active participation or the tacit consent of the Ruling Rajapaksas.

Three days after the Bodu Bala Sena (BBS) had its incendiary meeting in Maharagama, its partner organisation Sinhala Ravaya (SR) marched from the Nelum Pokuna Mahinda Rajapaksa Theatre to the Iranian Embassy. ‘Our discontent of (sic) banning Buddha Statues in Iran’, screamed hand-drawn placards while printed ones in Sinhala claimed that by banning Buddha statues, Iran had ‘insulted the Buddhist world’.

But Iran has not banned Buddha statues, according to Saeed Jaber Ansari, Secretary of the Headquarters for Supporting and Protecting Cultural Works and the supposed author of the ban: “Unfortunately, my remarks have been misinterpreted… I just meant the illegal imports of certain cultural works and items and in violation of the customs (rules and regulations). From our point of view, disrespect for the beliefs of other regions is unacceptable” (FNA – 20.2.2013).

Iran is a key ally of the Rajapaksas; Tehran came to Colombo’s rescue time and again with weapons and oil, at concessionary prices. All Colombo had to do was to check with Tehran about the supposed ban. Instead, a molehill was turned into a mountain; and the SR allowed to demonstrate against a key ally.

Are the fanatics beyond Rajapaksa control? Do they represent an independent power bloc which even Gotabhaya Rajapaksa is loath to antagonise?

If the Rajapaksas are still in control, why are they allowing BBS and SR to sow the seeds of a religious conflict nationally and antagonise a key ally internationally?

Perhaps the answer to this question can be gleaned by examining what issues BBS and SR focus on and which ones they ignore.

BBS and SR (and JHU) never protest against the dispossession of Sinhala-Buddhists, when the expropriators are the Rajapaksas.

For instance, these self-declared guardians of the ‘Sinhala nation’ were mute about the violent eviction of Sinhala-Buddhist villagers of Ragamwela and Shastrawela, in Ampara; or about the destruction of 200 acres of chenas belonging to Sinhala-Buddists of Panama.

Defending the Sinhala inhabitants and the Buddhist heritage of the East is said to be a paramount task of BBS-SR-JHU types. So why the reverberating silence about the dispossessions and evictions in Ampara? How come these eternal vigilantes are not up in arms against the Navy’s bulldozing of the ancient Samudra Giri Vihayara in Ragamwela?

Why are BBS and SR silent about the Rajapaksa plan to hand over the Norochcholai plant to the Chinese? Will they march on the Chinese Embassy in protest?

What about the selling and leasing of prime lands in Colombo to foreigners? Where are the defenders of Sinhala patrimony?

Why the silence about the plight of the Sinhala Buddhist victims of child abuse and rape? Is this all important issue of no concern to the BBS/SR because Sinhala Buddhist children and women are being victimised not by Muslims or Tamils but by Sinhala Buddhist men?

The JHU-BBS-SR types are cautious about what and who they criticise. They are yet to oppose the excesses of the Ruling Family; they have nothing to say about corruption or inflation. They vanished into the woodwork during the impeachment.

When Sinhala interests are being undermined by the Rajapaksas, when Sinhala-Buddhists are being victimised by other Sinhala-Buddhists, the JHU-BBS-SR types remain dormant and mute. They become virulently vocal and offensively active only when they can scream against this or that minority.

Until about a year ago, their main enemy happened to be Christians. They screamed about Christian conspiracies and charged that Christians were trying to convert innocent Buddhists, Hindus and Muslims by unethical means.

Suddenly, inexplicably, they changed tracks. The Christian enemy is a thing of the past. Now their Satan is a Muslim. He eats Halal food, practices polygamy, breeds incessantly and plans to takeover Sri Lanka!

Whose Tune?

Dinesh Gunawardane is a Sinhala Supremacist, albeit one who retains some sanity. When the BBS’s planned Maharagama meeting was discussed in cabinet, he had wanted it banned. The President reportedly disagreed, claiming that leading BBS monks assured him that they do not have an anti-Muslim agenda.

Is the President being duped? If so, a passing look at the BBS Facebook page or its You Tube videos will enlighten him.

Or is he the organ-grinder for the BBS’s Dance Macabre?

This time last year, anti-Americanism/Western imperialism was the Zeitgeist. Washington was readying to present a resolution on Sri Lanka at Geneva. The resolution asked for the time-bound implementation of LLRC recommendations and the Americans invited Sri Lanka to participate in the drafting process.

The Rajapaksas acted as if they were being ordered to succumb to colonial-subjugation or condone territorial-decapitation. Geneva was turned into a life-and-death battle. The Siblings expressed willingness to sacrifice their lives to defend the country from an American invasion; ministerial acolytes screamed their determination to ride the same tumbrel with the Siblings all the way to the guillotine. Demonstrations against the West and the UN became a daily occurrence.

This year the regime seems to be ignoring Geneva, almost. Though Washington is drafting a follow-up resolution on Sri Lanka, there will be no mammoth delegations or organised-hysteria.

Colombo has other, bigger, concerns.

Today Islamophobia is the Zeitgeist. The demonstrators target not Western invaders but Muslim encroachers.

With the Tiger defeated, the Rajapaksas have no more use of Lankan Muslims. Thanks to anti-Iranian sanctions, Colombo has very little to gain from a special relationship with Tehran.

The Rajapaksas have their own brand of deranged-logic, dictated by their power-mania. Are they trying to conjure an Islamic enemy as a patriotic cover for their repressive rule and their oppressive economics? Are they promoting the myth of an Islamic threat to win an entrée into the West?

Are we going to sleepwalk behind these demented Pipers, to a new doom?

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Latest comments

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    This is a Master Plan by the Family to establish rule in perpetuity!

    1. Divert the people’s attention from the current economic misery.

    2. Impress the Sinhala Buddhists that they will always have the protection and support of the Family.

    3. Allow the current anti-minority situation to escalate, and create alarm among the minorities

    4. Intervene only at a critical point, and only to bring about a temporary resolution, with the sword of Damocles permanently hanging over the minorities. This is expected to demonstrate that the Family are their only protectors, and at the same time asserting that the majoritarian dynamics has to be accepted.

    5. The final sinister agenda is of course to make both sides beholden to the family for their support and protection.

    6. For everybody’s sake and for peace in this wretched nation, we will then have to keep the Family in power in perpetuity.

    Voila!!!

    • 0
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      @MNZ
      You hit the nail on the head.

      I feel that the present situation in the country is similar to that of J. R. R. Tolkien’s “The Lord of the Rings” trilogy. The evil Sauron (The Lord of the Rings) is the primary antagonist and titular character of the books. In our case it is non other than PercyPaksha “The Lord of Sri RajaPakistan.” And just like Sauron deceived the Elves of Eregion, PercyPaksha deceived the 3 brain celled idiots of RajaPakistan with xenophobic stories of the return of the LTTE and western colonialists who will permanently subjugate this great race of 3 brain celled idiots.

      This man (PercyPaksha) and his evil family can never be defeated through an election since the advent of the 18th amendment made elections in the future nothing more than a farce. The only way is through foreign intervention or if and when these “3 brain celled idiots” grow a couple of more brain cells and realise what they have got themselves into by giving this man and his family unlimited power and a blank cheque to do what ever they want…and they finally rise up and kick them out of power or destroy them like what happened to Gaddafi in Libya.

    • 0
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      If this ignites, it will blow up beyong expectations, and MR will be answerable for allowing this and every killing situation to escalate. Police and army will ignore (as what is happening now). Guns will proliferate and both sides will not trust each other. I think he is under estimating the impact this will cause, despite what was experienced during the LTTE crisis.

      • 0
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        Thisaranee, thanks for this. The BALU SENA which is the Rajapakse front to distract the people by dividing and ruling the communities of Lanka, must be defeated.

        We need to think outside the box and plan for the next presidential election to ensure democratic regime change. A group of academics after an analysis of the political landscape has gone though a long and short list of candidates and have chosen Kumar Sangakkara to bat for Sri Lanka, to be the CHANGE, as the NEXT PRESIDENT OF LANKA and ask him to accept our nomination on behalf of ALL responsible Lankan citizens for the presidential election of 2016 – to save Lanka!
        We need to be thinking outside the box of corrupt politicians of the UNP and UPFA who are in a bipartisan agreement to ruin the country while playing ethnic politics!
        Sanga is a Brilliant bet to save Lanka from ruin and be the next President of Lanka with the help of civil society and the business community. He is clean meaning NOT corrupt, intelligent, a lawyer, a NATIONAL FIGURE, an excellent orator and loved and respected by all Sri Lankans, He alone has the brains and gut and charisma to UNITE Lanka’s diverse communities as no other politician can! Check out his Lord’s speech.
        Today we are in an age of young leaders – Britain’s David Camaron was less than 40 when he became PM and so was Obama was early forties when he became US president..
        Sanga can be the change and we need to start the campaign to pusuade hid to BAT FOR LANKA and save it from the disgraceful politicians of the SL parliament.

        • 0
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          Yes, indeed..!

          The Joint opposition should ask Sanga to be their candidate at the 2016 Presidential election or he should run independently.. All Lankas will vote for him and he will make a clean sweep.. and then be able to change the JRJ Constitution and abolish the Executive Presidency that breeds dictatorship.

          NO politician or military general will so this i.e. abolish the Constitution that got them enthroned once in power. Only a sportsman of a highest caliber can and will do this..

          Roll over Ranil Wickramasinghe, corrupt UNP dictator and corrupt MONSTER Mahinda Rajapassa and family!

          • 0
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            Ha haa…do you chaps hate Sanga so much that you’ll want to get him killed or imprisoned on a trumped up charge of failing to win the 2011 World Cup final? Don’t forget that the attorney general and the judiciary is now in Mahinda’s pocket. Hounding Sanga would be kids play for MR with the media and judiciary in his hands. Yesterdays hero can be made today’s traitor, and today’s traitor can be made tomorrows hero if MR wants. This is all possible because of the lack of brain cells in the heads of most of the majority. :)

            Future elections held under the 18th amendment will be a farce UNLESS over 80 to 90 percent decide to vote against MR. If 40 to 45 percent vote against him he will easily make up the difference through a computer jilmart. The only way to kick him out of power will be through a peoples revolution.

            Do you people actually believe that MR bought in the 18th amendment doing away with time limits on the presidency just to hand it over after 12 years to someone else who is not from the RogerPox family??? :)

            • 0
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              I like it.

  • 0
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    Two benefits- 1. Divert attention from Geneva.
    2. create the environment that requires military intervention

  • 0
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    It is indeed strange that the BBS does not protest when excesses are committed against the sinhalese by the regime. Their target appears to be the muslims only. How else can one explain their criticism of the increase in the muslim population? It is now reported that the SOD has met the ACJU to discuss this matter. It is also reported that SR had met the SOD and handed him a list of anti muslim reccomendations.

    The involvement of the SOD in this matter is rather strange. At the same time there are accusations by Mangala S that it is the MOD who is funding BBS through a slush fund. Since MOD has connections with Israel, an arch enemy of the muslims, is this the Israeli Connection? It seems that there are various hidden forces at play with their own agendas. MOD is famous for the grease yaka phenomenon and now is it in involved in the Halal phenomenon.

  • 0
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    If Colombo ordered Balachandran’s execution, then there is something toxically rotten in the state of Sri Lanka. If we, the Sinhalese, are not affected and outraged by the possibility of such a crime, or if we lack the courage to condemn it, then we are a nation lost. We will not know peace or development. We will look on apathetically, as other fanatics commit other crimes in our name and push this already bloodied land from one violent crisis to the next.

    Tisarannee, no truer words have been spoken. You have crystallised the whole situation in his para.
    Did you notice how the whole saga of a ‘justice denied to a chief justice’ went by with just a whimper?

  • 0
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    If this anti Muslim sentiment is allowed to aggravate we are doomed.

  • 0
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    LAST TIME THEY MANAGED TO GET AWAY AT GENEVA WITH ARAB AND MUSLIM SUPPORT.

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    Thisaranee states, ‘Dinesh Gunawardane is a Sinhala Supremacist, albeit one who retains some sanity. When the BBS’s planned Maharagama meeting was discussed in cabinet, he had wanted it banned. The President reportedly disagreed, claiming that leading BBS monks assured him that they do not have an anti-Muslim agenda’.

    Dinesh acted in this manner opposing the BBS, because Champika backing BBS is gaining in Dinesh’s electorate Maharagam edging him out. Otherwise Dinesh is as bad a Sinhala chauvinist as Champika. Dinesh in order to survive and retain his position in Maharagama, has to oppose BBS to prevent Champika taking control.

    • 0
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      This is very correct.

      Once upon a time, Dinesh was different. Today he is the most exemplary case to show other how guys could be brainwashed. When listening to him in Parliment, I go mad seeing the issues today. Earlier he was a good politian.

      • 0
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        Surawimala, Dinesh was always a Humbug like his father Phillip. Phillip was one with Banda who advocated vernacular education to the masses while both Banda and Phillip educated their offspring overseas to qualify. Phillip did this by joining the UNP and thanks to the curtessy of Dudley who arranged five scholarships to all his children in the East European countries and we all know how degrees are awarded for VIP’s children. In addition Phillip was responsible for ruining amity in villages with his Paddy Lands Act although it was promised that the tenant cultivator will be king. So Boralugoda Buruwa’s son can never be a Sinhaya.

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    In medieval times, all the progeny of a vanquished enemy were exterminated. In fact, royal agents combed the countryside, villages and townships to look for them, lest they aspire to the throne one day.

    The British rulers of Ceylon, were about to execute Ehelepola Kumarihamy as her husband was a rebel “terrorist” and their offspring when the “Weera” Madduma Bandara as a child exhorted his older brother thus: ” Oh Elder brother, do not be afraid, let me show you how to face death!” and put his neck on the block for beheading….

    Nowadays, in an age when enemies of choice are manufactured (ie an Islamic caliphate stretching from Spain to western China) and “Al Qaeda” (read “Islamic terrorist”) are required to be seen as the bane of civil society in America, the story is “what for the telling” !!

  • 0
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    Killing children is a no no in any Nation whether it is civilized or not.

    LTTE invented Child Soldiers and introduced them to the world.

    Locally they sent Child soldiers as cannon fodder against professional soldiers, while keeping their precious in heavily fortified and well guarded bunkers.

    Hope Ms Thisaranee has seen the Kathankaddy massacre on You Tube.

    Even grown men would cry looking at the faces of these innocent kids lying in bare timber coffins.

    Who committed these abhorrent crimes?.

    Although the Tiger are gone, their sponsors , financiers and even reverends who gave the Tigers last rites are still around.

    And they are not just around, but surrounded by the most powerful like the Britsh and Canadian PMs, and holding their democratic parliamentary sessions in the British Parliament itself.

    What is their mission statement?.

    *Punish Rajapaksa for eliminating the Tigers and saving thousands of lives, like the future Kathankaddy kids and Kabilithigollawa adults.

    *And install the the Tiger proxies of the TNA lead by Sambandan as the sole guardians of not only Tamils but also Muslims in the NEP.

    And Thisaranees are working tirelessly to fullfil their dream.

    • 0
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      Tsunamisekera:
      It does appear that CT has no policy whatsoever about publishing the demented rubbish that you keep producing.
      Pity!

    • 0
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      Anything new, this is what we hear every time. Be rational and pragmatic.

  • 0
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    Usual and the same old rubbish from the anti-govt and anti-Buddhist writer.

    • 0
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      Look who is talking, JIM Softy Sri Lankan born Sinhala Buddhist living in Australia talking about anti gov and anti Buddhist song. Mahaddana Mutha type!!!

  • 0
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    Ever since independence a notion appears to have prevailed that the polity can never fend for itself. If the national cake cannot be expanded the depletion of the population by design is the alternative. The number of Indian Tamils repatriated together with their natural increase will make up 1 million. Burghers had to go out in substantial numbers – about 1 lakh. Then Tamils made their way out – 9 lakhs in all. Three insurgencies and allied citizens lost were 2 lakhs. Voluntary exile of Sinhalese is 1 lakh. On foreign employment 2 million are out. So mouths to feed are down by 4.3 million.

    This has been achieved through maladministration. But is that enough when the appetite is insatiable? No. The Muslim population has to be depleted. That programme is now launched. On completion will it stop? No. What next? Consume its own kind. Pol Pot did it. So why not I?.

  • 0
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    Gamini is perfectly right. Dinesh G is a scheming communalist-chauvinist. He has no other platform. In no election can he muster
    on his own 3,000 votes. He is against BBS because they have no time for him. His Electoral Reform effort is merely to reduce the Parliamentary strength of the Tamil and Muslim MPs, which is precisely why MR gave him the job. What has Dinesh done in all his years as
    Minister that has benefited the country and its plural people except setting one against the other?

    Senguttuvan

  • 0
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    The idea of Kumar Sangakkara as the CHANGE AGENT for Sri lanka is the best news for the season.Let the Academics, Lawyers, Judiciary,the Business community,Students Professionals be in the vanguard.

  • 0
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    Dinuk’s proposal and Dodo’s and Sunil Mendis’ approval of bringing another Cricketer into politics will be a disaster. We already have cricketer turned parliamentarians. What have they done so far? FYI: Sanga is not a lawyer but only a law student. Why Sanga for presidency? AJust because he is an excellent Cricketer how he could be a good politician or a statesman has to be seen. Why not Shirani Bandaranayake for presidency.

  • 0
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    Tisaranee, you are the proverbial woman crying at a wedding. I didn’t expect you to keep quiet now that the funeral is here.

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