20 May, 2022


Ranil’s Reckless Radicalism

By Dayan Jayatilleka

Dr. Dayan Jayatilleka

“When the prison doors open, the real dragon will fly out”—Ho Chi Minh

Mao Zedong once famously chided a group of young loyalists, saying “you say you want to make a revolution, but you don’t know where the bourgeoisie is! The bourgeoisie is in the party!”  Similarly, I have long wanted to see an “anti-systemic” movement and struggle (to use my old professor, the iconic Immanuel Wallerstein’s concept) but have not known where the most “anti-systemic” element is, in this country. That is until now. But I have changed.
I have had an epiphany. It has dawned on me that the most dangerously radical political leader in the country is not Kumara Gunaratnam but Ranil Wickremesinghe and the most dangerously radical political party is not the Frontline Socialist Party (FSP) but the United National Party (UNP). Is green the new red?
There isn’t a single thing that the three divided streams of the once united JVP propose—and I refer to Anura Kumara’s JVP, Kumar Gunaratnam’s FSP and Wimal Weerawansa’s NFF—that comes even close to wreaking the havoc that the UNP’s present political  practices and policy postures are about to inflict upon stability and the System. I’m not joking.
Take the partial disenfranchisement of the millions who voted for Mahinda Rajapaksa and against a National government at the August 2015 parliamentary election. Not only don’t they have their 95 seats, they have been deprived of the leadership of the opposition that their 51 seat entitle them to according to all tenets of logic, arithmetic, fair play and natural justice. Instead we have a bogus Opposition, a fraudulent Opposition, an entirely ethnic opposition which has only 16 seats, represents an ethnic minority and two provinces of the island. There is no mainstream opposition permitted.
This structural fraud, this confiscation and suffocation of popular sovereignty, renders the political order illegitimate and therefore not entitled to the stipulation that goes with legitimacy, namely that such a political order can and must be replaced only through electoral and systemic means. If a political order ignores the results of an election, violates it and actually stands it on its head, then is degree of illegitimacy is such that extra-electoral methods of direct action and people’s power almost automatically come onto the agenda.
To add insult to injury, Dinesh Gunawardena, the socially respected, experienced parliamentarian and quite considerably moderate nationalist (far more moderate than his firebrand father) has been punitively evicted for a week from parliament while another moderate progressive, Dullas Alahapperuma has not been allowed to stand-in for him. This smacks of a trial run to reduce the already restricted political space of the legitimate Opposition, the JO.  If this is the treatment meted out to Dinesh Gunawardena, nobody is guaranteed their democratic political space and freedom of political expression even in the sacrosanct precincts of Parliament.
One can readily imagine the fate of democracy if a Third Republican Constitution is promulgated in which the executive Presidency stands abolished and executive power transferred to this Prime minister and this Parliament as it is currently configured, or rather, distorted– with a 16 member party as Opposition, a five member party as Opposition Whip and a 51 member coalition with no official status whatsoever!
So as the song went, “what’s it all about, Alfie?” It’s about retro chic, really. It’s like miniskirts are back in fashion. The UNP’s old behavior is back on display. The UNP’s polarizing policies of 1951-1956 generated a massive social uprising in August 1953, radicalized the Sinhala Buddhists and shifted SWRD and the SLFP to a Sinhala nationalist platform by 1956. The UNP’s policies of 1965-70 catapulted a strong center-left into office, but more significantly, caused the rise of an armed revolutionary movement by the late 1960s; a movement that armed itself due to a fear that the UNP’s rightwing (of which the present PM’s father was the ideologue) would outmaneuver the liberal leader of the country Dudley Senanayaka, postpone elections and install a Rightist dictatorship.
Third time round, in the 1980s, the UNP weakened the parliamentary Opposition by hauling up Madam Bandaranaike before a Commission and removing her civic rights, throwing Vijaya Kumaratunga in jail, and holding a fraudulent and coercive referendum to extend the term of Parliament.
That trajectory began its descent into hell six months later with July ’83, the shooting of students in ’84, the radical Left (JVP and its rivals) going underground, the shooting dead of a youngster attending the May Day rally of Dinesh Gunawardana in ’87, civil war exploding in the South, escalating civil war in the North, foreign intervention and a backlash of xenophobic barbarism, all resulting in a situation in which UNPers were not only murdered but could not be carried above the knee in funeral processions—a horrific situation from which the archetype “outsider”, Ranasinghe Premadasa, rescued his party, government, people, and country, and was sought to be impeached by a grateful UNP elite!
Today, the UNP has no such figure even remotely on the horizon. If it goes down the road of the 1980s as it seems to be determined to do, it will not be rescued from within, because there is no visible, audible, credible alternative within the UNP. There are no “outsiders”; only insiders and wanna-be insiders.
As in the ’80s, the UNP is persecuting the Opposition because it wants to evict it from all political space, and it wants to do this because of the same two reasons that motivated it in the early ‘80s. The UNP wants to win a referendum and it wants to weaken the SLFP—in this case its own coalition partner and its leader, President Sirisena. The UNP wishes to push through the Third Republican Constitution that it has promised its Tamil voters, its TNA partner, its Tamil Diaspora allies, its Tamil Nadu and Tamil Diaspora influenced foreign sponsors. It wants to cripple both wings of the SLFP.
It plans to cripple the progressive (JO/MR) wing, just as it attacked the SLFP’s Vijaya Kumaratunga led progressives in the 1980s on the pretext of the absurd “Naxalite Plot”—and actually shot at Vijaya at the Mahara by-election (where the UNP’s present leader had been appointed political authority of the UNP’s campaign).
It also wants to cripple the more liberal SLFP which is its coalition partner, by abolishing the executive presidency and transferring power to the UNP Prime Minister and his allies the Chief Ministers of North and East.
Meanwhile the rhetoric and practices of the UNP leadership show that it is preparing for a showdown with the student movement and the trade union movement led variously by the Frontline Socialists and the JVP. 
This preparation for confrontation all around the compass takes place in a context rather different from the 1980s, though—and it is the context that renders the outcome more inevitably incendiary than in the 1980s. At that time the economy was growing fast, all factions of the ruling elite (JR, Lalith, Gamini, Premadasa) had developmental ideas and initiatives, employment was rapidly generated, the place was generally prosperous though war-torn, and political stability assured by the new, presidential Constitution. Today, none of those plus factors are present, while their opposites are.
The only macroeconomic idea the UNP government has is to open itself and sell itself to all comers passing through the Indian Ocean or better still, the Asia-Pacific region. This is not an economic developmental ideology; it is the project of being a stopover point and service station for visiting navies; it the consciousness of a brothel owner in a port city. If the UNP elite’s vision comes through, this island will be one massive massage parlor for docking ships. Sri Lanka won’t be the “rising hub” of the Asia–Pacific, it’ll be “The House of the Rising Sun”. The most suitable symbolic depiction of the Wickremesinghe government’s vision for Sri Lanka is that of a man, legs spread apart, bending over a chair, with a model warship rammed where the sun don’t shine!
As for the stability necessary for a propitious climate of investment, foreign and domestic, nothing is quite as tricky as removing your existing Constitution and replacing it with a whole new one which requires a referendum, and you don’t have a two thirds majority of your own while your own coalition partners are fighting a rear guard action against the entire idea!      
In an incredible imitation of the past, the PM and his UNP are reviving student radicalism on a mass scale. In the first years of the Jayewardene administration, Wijeweera, the JVP and the university student movement under the latter’s control were quite well-behaved. The trouble started in Kelaniya when UNP goons attacked students, the latter hit back, a goon died and the present PM (at the time a UNP chieftain in Kelaniya) attended his funeral. And then in 1980 he followed up in his capacity of Minister of Education, with a typically bright idea: the White Paper on Education. The student movement rose out of the universities on to the streets, and the repression –including abductions to Siri Kotha, baton charging by mounted Police and lethal shooting in 1984—turned the student movement into something like Daenerys’ dragons in ‘Game of Thrones’. Now Mr. Wickremesinghe is back, the UNP is back postponing scheduled elections and its “déjà vu all over again”.
As PM in 2001-2004, Mr. Wickremesinghe’s anti-national policies of appeasement were cause and catalyst of a huge Sinhala nationalist backlash which drove the SLFP, JVP and JHU together and carried Mahinda Rajapaksa to the top. I have little doubt that, come the elections of 2019-2020, Mr. Wickremesinghe’s present stint will have resulted in yet another grateful Rajapaksa beneficiary, albeit one who is more ‘Putinist’ than his illustrious predecessor and elder sibling.
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Latest comments

  • 17

    You have got your analogy with Putin with precision. Both are murderous thugs. Our one, more pitiless that the pristine Putin. I note that his complaint is that we don’t condemn Prabhakaran with the same vehemence! That is progress. He concedes the likeness/the sameness !

    Waiting to oust Ranil till 2019 or 20 is an equally dismal prospect. Why doesn’t the JO demand an immediate general election.

    • 6

      So you have no issue with what Ranil is doing to the country but become hyper active at the mention of gota?

    • 8

      DJ has been doing anything and everything to destroy Ranil.

      [Edited out]

      Just because RW is not of his match… but MR and any thuggish extremist would be part of DJ, he hates RW, CBK and MY3.

      [Edited out]

      We can get the pulse feeling of the kind of extremist today, not being able to do what they had been doing for a such a long. I have no doubt, even if so much of deficiencies are there, in the new govt too, but by 2020, they will have achieved lot more.
      Today, at least to some extent law and order is there. If AR has gone wrong with his tenders in harbour, he should should face it as former central bank governer. So then we can also ask GOTA to be jailed for all the high profile crimes her perpetrated. MR to be jailed for mountaieous allegations being levelled at him… with lot more prima facie evidence being collected.
      His wife too, even if she says, that she would commit suicide, FCID should come foward to call for an interogations. No matter she was first lady, but law is law to anyone and everyone.

    • 5

      Joint opposition does not want election. They want power. Dayan wants to be foregin Minister to go around west (free travel, etc.) to propaganda to implement white van technique and how to murder innocents.

  • 22


    Tomorrow, if Ranil gives you a job, you’ll be singing a different tune.

    That’s the Harvard-Dictionary definition of smart-patriotism.

    Now, one wonder, if you wanted be one of Ranil’s boys and and you were scorned.

    Such venom! Such hatred!

  • 15

    Ranils Reckless Radicalism…. says Dayan

    Dayans Dauntless Demonism…

    • 9

      Dayan’s Delusional Dreamscape!

  • 11

    Dr. Dayan Jayatilleka

    RE: Ranil’s Reckless Radicalism

    How long is your contract with MaRa MaRa ChaTu MaRa AmaNa MaRa?

    Try to get something out of the stolen public funds from . MaRa seem to have plenty, and spending very little with the Lawyers.

  • 11


    It is Cristal clear to anyone that a new constitution could not be formulated without the support of both factions of the SLFP..

    A two third majority and more than 50%of the votes in a referundom is impossible without the support of SLFP AND JVP.

    Then why you ring the alarm bell?

    it is not for any reason, but with an hidden ulterior motive to wipe up racism as all fascist normally do when cornered and make government ungovernable and capture power through unconstitutional military coup

    I am 100%certain that you will fail miserably and have a tragic fall into the dustbin of history

  • 9

    Dream on

  • 11

    Dr DJ calm down dont be so frustrated. Ever since Jan 8 dear DJ has been attacking PM left and right with the support of the maharaja media coolies. this government will go on until 2020 so relax Dr DJ.

  • 7

    I visted the 2 websites A&B below again today. For A there were 113 comments and no comments by DJ so far. Where as Naga has commented and sticked to his stand.
    In my view DJ did not write any analysis like the above in August or September 2015.
    Now he wants to create troubles or national rebellion as he claims with the objective to bring by Gotha as president and Mahinda as PM in 2020 or well before that.




    Leaving A,B & C aside DJ did wrote a better one ( link given below ) in Dec 2016 because MS & Ranil do not treat DJ like Gotha has treated Lasantha.

    But come March 2017 he has become more restless and aggressive and coming up with his fictional write ups almost every day. What is his motive ? and what incentives he gets ? I am raising this point becwuse his behaviour does not reflect that of a smart patriot and MaRa – GoRa loyalist.

  • 4

    his behaviour does not reflect that of a smart patriot and MaRa – GoRa loyalist.

    He is making bakground preparations for an election.

    the only problem is it is with the same group of parliamentary wellfare receipients who are better in welikada.

    JVP, LSSP and FSP – with all those who could not find employment in austrlia -, JO, particularly, Dinesh Gunawardane who is another actor just for living.

    Gota plus all these same con-artists men, there is nothing new in it. No, new visions. Gota will be a pawn of Mahinda Rajapakse with a different flavour. Gota will be taught how to talk to the masses.

  • 14

    Dr. Dayan Jayatilleka,

    I am not rich or educated like you. Though I am qualified to ask just a single question with my Sri Lankan citizenship since you’re talking BIG…BIG things here. The question is:

    Where the heck you were when MR was ruling this country? You were just supporting him just like other thugs were supporting him with their muscles, right?

    For me as an average Sri Lankan, only difference is, you studied well and got your doctorate, and those other thugs might have had worked hard to get their body muscles built. But you both were henchmen of MR and his infamous reign.

    • 5

      If DJ is educated, he would never support rascals on and on. Would he ever sit with uneducated rascals like Buruwanse and other JO men, [Edited out]

    • 4

      DJ, get over the fact that MR lost and will never return to power again.

  • 1

    30 percent of the inhabitants live in poverty.

    It is in the 2015 CB Report which Dr Ranil’s own buddy presented before saying Adios. to Batalanda.

    Here is a graphic example.

    A Bloody mary and a Tapas, like a Tandoori Chicken on Toast costs LKR 800 each, in Sira’s Presidential Neighborhood.

    That is a sum total of LKR 1600 a Drink and a Bite .

    That 30 percent earn only LKR 876 on average per person per day.

    And the one million plus Estate Tamils are a considerable segment there. .

    Perhaps that 30 percent should give Kumar Gunaratanam a go .

  • 9

    Ahangama Silvalaage Don Mario Jayatilleke Silva ( more appropriately Dee Jay , that’s Rajapaksas’ Dee Jay ) was nowhere to be seen when his current Hero Gotabhaya Rajapaksa was getting his Army boys to callously shoot down the many villagers of Rathupaswela just because they protested about their water being poisoned by Dhammika Perera’s Haleys factory.He was no where to be seen or heard when innocent people were been “whitevanned”. Oh yes he was too busy to notice all these “minor issues” as he was earning his top dollar in the clovers of Paris and Geneva , while sipping vintage wine.It was Dayan who ruined Rajapaksa’s name in Geneva and took Sri Lanka down in the process, until Rajapaksa realized the damage and had the Buffon hauled back to Colombo.Alas, it was all too late anyway.

    Now with the dollar savings dipping and his vine cellar at his home slowly running out of stock, our Geneva Cardboard Sando has suddenly regained his pen and voice.What a hypocrite ? But then Dayan’s life has been replete with disception and chickenery. which began when he vociferously supported his former mentor Varatharaja Perumal’s call for Unilateral Declaration of Independence for his Tamil Eelam.Then he licked Premadasa’s boots ,then Rajapaksa’s , then Sajit’s and now Gota’s.All because Ranil W did not and does not care a damm for this worm.Oh ya he did try to get close to Sirisena too but the man from Polonaruwa was shrewd enough not to touch the slimy DeeJay even with a barge pole.Poor Mervyn , the principled man he was must surely be turning in his grave non stop.

  • 7

    Oh Dayan…
    I remember watching your arguments on Sirasa Sithijaya pre-2015 Jan. I remember you arguing that ONLY someone who can get the JVP, Jathika Hela urumaya etc etc on the same stage can win and because Ranil cannot, Mahinda will easily win…

    You wre also very critical about Mahinda whenyou were let go from Geneva, do you remember that?

    Well, guess what? JVP was never on stage with Ranil and the UNP easily beat Mahinda in Aug 2015… Mahinda and you were beaten…

    You have so much venom against Ranil! It’s obvious your personal animosity against Ranil is leading you into oblivion…

    Aiyooo Dayan…

  • 2

    NICE to see DJ in fine fettle, lobbing blobs of dried cow-dung every which way, and right at the end…..just when you thought ‘what’s it all about?’ you reach the punch line and his play for the prince in the wings. Yes, yes, everything points to the coming of Gota the Slayer. Lover of puppy dogs. Hater of emissaries. Lord Protector of the BBS. Yes, dear people, The Great Liberator is slowly coming around to the idea that he might promote himself to elder statesman, and allow ‘malli’ to take the over the reigns of the Rajapaksa chariot.

    AND, on a quiet verandah in the old cinnamon quarter, the present incumbent quietly hums to himself – soon, we’ll be without the moon, humming a different tune, and then, there may be tear drops to shed, but while there’s music and moonlight, let’s face the music and dance.

    Meanwhile, in a faraway country, the true burghers who once ruled us are awaiting the results that will shape their next few years….all I have seen this beautiful spring day are canals and bridges……how exciting!

    • 3

      Spring Koha

      “all I have seen this beautiful spring day are canals and bridges……how exciting!”

      And no human beings at all in the vicinity.

      Where have all the humans gone?

      Is it to do with Gota’s second coming?

      How sad.

  • 4


    The earlier crook promised to abolish the EP to Sinhala Modaya and then paid Ransom from Muslims parties to all UNP cross overs like GL to change the constitutions with 18A. Thero de Silva’s Chakalathi GL now doesn’t know where to go. UNP investigated him for Suicide Jacket. SLFP has fired from the part. This person doesn’t have even that kind of hold. Those who are connected with Murders in the past have to beg the bosses not to put them on trial. No alternatives.

    JR came to power with a never matched majority. He only had a referendum to have the parliament continue for one term. That is not for him. He left the job in time. New King worked with UNP in EP election. UNP and SLFP had a Unity government and Ranil was the Prime Minister until September 2015. The SLFP party was under the leadership of New King until the Parliament election. Ranil was opposed by SLFP in that election promises. Ranil was not contradicted on the EP removal by SLFP. Ranil’s promise of Constitutional change was accepted by SLFP. When the election was won by UNP, New King who the chief of SLFP and responsible for SLFP’s action and was capable appointing a Prime Minister, made deal with UNP for National Unity Government. UNP allocated the minister posts. Constitution says if no Unity government, only 30 UNP minister. So those who could not get UNP allocated minister post took the leadership of Dinesh. He recently threatened there will be even army coup. It does not make Dinesh a moderate. He was not investigated, unlike GL. But, now Thero flowing out a river of tears as these guys are not accepted as opposition. Why? SLFP Leader has not dismissed them like GL. That is why

  • 6

    Dayan is an educated man without a wisdom, self proclaim political scientist.ACTUALLY HE IS BEST SUITED FOR Jo group. JO GROPE CALLED, TEAM CORRUPTED MORE THAN THAT ALMOST ALL OF THEM ARE DUMMIES.


  • 9

    “But I have changed. I have had an epiphany”, says the indefatigable regurgitator of ‘hate-Ranil-speech’!

    What a load of crap! That’s an “epiphany” for someone who endlessly bad-mouths Ranil???? The man’s delusional state of mind is reaching new heights!

    Just goes to show what this Creep thinks of CT readers’ intelligence.

    Give us a break Dr. Alternate Reality and can the bullshit.

  • 5

    This man lost his credibility years ago.

    CT should stop publishing him asap.

  • 2

    We voted out MR because what we had heard about the whole family. Now most of their murderous and corrupt acts have come to the open, can one imagine how these people want the family back? If MS and RW are not good we should find some other leaders, not the previous lot.

  • 5

    DJ, don’t you understand that reading the comments on your articles, the people consider you an idiot and a clown who is inflated with his own ego. Stop writing this crap and disappear into oblivion.

  • 5

    No-one cares about your opinion Dayan, the political joker!

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