24 September, 2020

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Resistance Must Not Stop Until Dawn Of The Spring

By Jude Fernando

‘We won’t allow you to let the judiciary go to hell. We won’t allow you to do that.’-(Mathiaparanan Abraham Sumanthiran MP)

No self-respecting person with integrity, or a shred of concern for justice should accept the President’s offer to become the next Chief Justice of the country. Those who support his bid, including, Vasudeva Nanayakkara who told the “judiciary to go to hell in Parliament on public camera, are guilty of complicity with the government’s bald attack on the independence of the Judiciary and attempt to undermine public confidence in it by twisting truth.  They join the regime in insulting judges, condone thuggery against peaceful dissent, dishonor the supremacy of the Parliament, and internationally disgrace the democratic institutions of Sri Lanka.

If the Bar Association accepts the new Chief Justice, they will undermine not only their own credibility but also that of the whole legal profession.  Sri Lanka will join the list of regimes who share complete disregard for democracy, civility, and justice, never mind ethics and morality.  Then the government will succeed in dividing and disrupting the principled collegiality among judges and among lawyers which is imperative for their independent and effective function, thereby opening more opportunities for politicization of the judiciary.

The efforts of the legal community to resist the impeachment and the appointment of the new chief justice will not bear fruit unless the majority of the Sri Lankan public principled international actors form a mass movement to challenge the undemocratic sources from which the government derives its power.

The illegality of the impeachment of the current Chief Justice has been much discussed. The Chief justice withdrew from a flawed impeachment process after the government denied her the due process guaranteed by the law. She objected to the attempt to sidestep the Constitution and all international norms pertaining to impeachment procedures.  Instead of properly investigating the serious charges against the Chief Justice, the Parliament and the President proved they no longer represent the people, and have refused to listen to their concerns.  Its disregard of the warnings of the international community has brought the Sri Lankan Parliament international disrepute.  The Chief justice earned the wrath of the government because she displayed much courage to uphold justice in delivering judgments against the government, despite the fact that she was appointed by the President.  She may be the straw that breaks the camels back!

The only worthwhile outcome of the impeachment is the revelation that the regime lacks moral credibility and legitimacy to govern the country.  The government has usurped the functions of the Judiciary and ignored sober legal judgments. The Parliamentary Select Committee violated all legal norms, as well as, the Constitution. The government has used the strength of state machinery to generate outrageous propaganda in support of its claim of rectitude.  The government tolerates the use of indecent  thuggery against the legally appointed Judges, and a tainted media spreads its lies in an attempt to quell dissent against the impeachment.   If it is allowed to succeed in its bid for more power by removing the chief justice, the reputation of the judiciary will be destroyed and no one, civilian or politician, will take its judgments seriously.

The President broke his word and did not appoint an independent committee to investigate the legitimacy of the PSC report.  President told the Supreme Court Judges that “It is still not too late for Ms. Bandaranayake to step down as Chief Justice,” said the President when he met with the judges of the Supreme Court. “If she did that,” he said he would “halt any action to remove her from office.”  President trumped up claims regarding the Chief Justice’s husband‘s alleged involvement in malfeasance NSB share issue that “we (the government) quietly covered it up, that is how it should be done after all, he is our man (ape miniha).” (Certainly helping ape miniha did not make his wife ‘our woman’ (ape gani), instead it boomeranged!) The President doesn’t have a clear conscience about the impeachment process, but this gesture can not compensate for his misdeeds!

The Island report, which President Mahinda Rajapaksa “acted swiftly and decisively to prevent any member” to ensure two third majoring vote in favor of the impeachment motion, and subsequently, and the Speaker Chamal Rajapaksa’s call for change the constitution to avert another constitutional crisis, provides further credibility to the illegality of the impeachment process and raises serious questions about responsible use of Presidential immunity.

A day after the President approved the impeachment, Malinda Seneviratne wrote, “President Mahinda Rajapaksa promised that the ruling party will show its strength when necessary. The ruling party did so on Friday, passing the impeachment motion against Chief Justice.”

What are the sources of government’s strength and power?

The government knows from experience that national and international protests will subside a few days after the impeachment. The international community has been a complete failure when it comes to competent intervention in Sri Lankan affairs. It has limited itself to empty rhetoric, and seems to care only that the Sri Lankan government serve its economic and geopolitical interests.

Protests in urban areas and complaints shared on social media will not change the government’s voter base. Governmental propaganda was successful because the main opposition UNP led by Ranil Wickremasinghe who has played a dastardly role and the anti-impeachment lobby failed to educate and mobilize the masses. The government’s claim that the Chief Justice caused the Goldon Key crisis was sufficient to persuade the masses. The anti-impeachment lobby’s claim that the impeachment is unconstitutional simply failed to capture the sympathy of the masses. Claims of unconstitutionality, constitutional crisis, and talk of politicizing of the judiciary were not persuasively or powerfully presented and the people were given no explanation of the impact such violations might have on their daily lives.  These communication failures supported rather than challenged the government, allowing it to continue to mislead the public at the same time it presented the international community with “evidence of democracy in the country” that it tolerated the dissent of urban activists and social media protesters.

There is no credible opposition leader in Sri Lanka. Mr. Ranil Wicremasinghe of the UNP is simply not an ineffective opposition leader; he actually serves the government’s interests more than his own party’s.  Wickremasinghe cannot lead the country on a democratic path — this should be clear after his loss in more than twenty elections, and yet he refuses to step down. The UNP has promoted JRJ’s undemocratic Constitutions in the past, and one cannot expect Mr. Wickremasinghe to represent change when he does not even support democracy within his own party.

Ranil Wickremasinge is partly responsible for two myths that prevent the public scrutiny of the Rajapaksa regime.  The first myth is that there is no other alternative to the UPFA (the alternative includes Mr. Wickremasinghe as well) and the second is that the parliament is supreme.  The anti-impeachment lobby has done too little to create an public awareness that the parliament which is subject to checks and balances by the judicial and executive branch is not supreme in law of in fact, in form or in substance. Nor can a parliament of mostly unprofessional, irresponsible and incompetent MPs and leftist geriatrics be supreme!

The government and its supporters will continue to play on xenophobia to suppress public criticism, and to blame international conspiracies for the country’s internal problems. This is an easy way to sway public sympathies and avoid taking responsibilities for its own positions. This is similar to the divide and rule policies of the colonial governments.  Many intellectuals, left-wing political parties, and media personalities back politicians who continue to Thrive on such policies. (Though some are now busy using their mastery of rhetoric to distance themselves from the government after selling their souls to create it)

The transnational capital, neoliberal institutions, and powerful nations are likely to limit their opposition to impeachment to simple rhetoric because they are pleased with the Rajapaksha regime that has reservations about sacrificing countries’ political and economic sovereignty to capitalist and geopolitical interests.

A number of (i.e. intellectuals, lawyers, business magnets, NGOs, journalists etc.) from whom the society expects to challenge the status quo are too dependent on the government patronage.  The government power also rides on those with a sense of gratitude for defeating the terrorism and government’s lack of enthusiasm in devolution of power to the Tamils.  These folks are complacent with government substituting development and securitization for justice for minorities.

Ethnoreligous nationalism and ‘freedom’ from terror, when combined with visible signs of ‘development’ (e.g. infrastructure, tourism, gambling etc), is still too powerful to make government’s impeachment misadventure a sufficient reason to make the regime unpopular among the masses.  It may be a luxury for those struggling for survival to think about term economic, political and environmental consequences of development for a multicultural and aid dependent country like Sri Lanka.

The religious establishments’ due to variety of reasons (e.g. fear, wealth, patronage, power etc) have failed in their duty to be the moral backbone of the society by subjecting the impeachment process to critical scrutiny of their respective religious theologies – aside from a brief statement by the interreligious organization.   The uncompromising ideological agendas, activism and the rhetoric of the minority of radicalized religious groups seem to be at ease under the present government to carry out their respective agendas.

Excessive political and economic power in the hands of the four members of the ruling family completely controls affairs of all branches of governance unprecedented in any time of country’s history or in any decent democracy.   The government has effectively breached the boundaries that exist between different branches of the government.  Hence the all systems of accountability and transparency have become defunct.

The impact of the social media, while indispensable to express dissent against the impeachment, is still limited to a minority of computer literates, and has access to computers.  The gap between the majority populations’ views about the impeachment and those expressed in social media is wide but may be closed in the days ahead as resistance from the judiciary and civil society builds and people are educated on the subject by the dissenters.

We must change all this if we want to restore democracy in Sri Lanka.  Change means to reclaim our entitlement for democratic institutions, which requires short and long term strategies to challenge the above sources from which the government derives its power.

In the short term we must continue to reject the new Chief Justice. We must hold to account those who ignored court orders and insulted the judiciary, those who were in contempt of court. The opposition parties should bring a motion of no confidence against the regime for abusing and insulting the supremacy of the Parliament and illegality of the impeachment process.

Our efforts will bear no fruit unless we can educate the public about the gravity of the predicament that the country faces.  We must mobilize them into a mass movement if we want to force the government to change its behavior.  Strength of such a movement also requires getting principled support from the international community.

Without a principled social movement there can be no credible opposition: this is our most important challenge. The country should not and need not wait for one political leader to spearhead this movement.  Nor should the primary objective of the movement be overthrowing the government, but rather, building democratic institutions out of which we could expect responsible political leaders both in the government and in the opposition.   Hope lies instead in professionals, an educated citizenry and grassroots organizations, which can and must form the basis for a mass movement.  Hope will become a reality only if its aspirants are prepared to endure chaos, uncertainty and sacrifices.

Related posts;

Part II- Judiciary At War Against The Constitution

Impeachment Of The First Woman CJ And Beginning Of The Spring In Sri Lanka?

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Latest comments

  • 0
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    A new CJ, albeit, an illegitimate one and one believed widely to be an ever willing stooge, has been already appointed.
    The spring will not come and we will have a very long winter, unless the legal fraternity comes out vehemently to stand for constitutional rule enshrined as a principle in our constitution. The constitution with all its faults, yet is based on lofty principles- sovereignty of the people and separation of powers. The constitution is not a barrier to be a climbed over or a wire fence to be crept through. The lawyers must harbinger the spring. This is an opportunity for the legal fraternity to change their popular professional image as a collective of Shylocks to that of men of principle, who can fight for constitutional principles and what is right.

    Dr.Rajasingham Narendran

    • 0
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      Dear Dr. Narendran

      Perhaps you might enjoy my two previous articles. Here is the link for part II, which will also give you the link for part I

      cheers
      Jude

        • 0
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          Jude,

          Thank you.

          Dr. R.N

        • 0
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          Jude – you are doing an excellent job for humanity. All humans should be very greatful to people like you. I am not a coward for typing my name here. I still have relations in SriLanka and I do not want them to be harmed.

          Anpu

    • 0
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      Dr RN,
      I am in full agrement with you.
      Anpu

  • 0
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    Sri Lankan Spring where are you? We cannot bear it anymore. We have the power to change it.

  • 0
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    It is high time a conclave of the BASL and FUTA be set-up in Colombo to push ahead the Spring born of Presidential misdemeanors, and let Politicians follow with their determination, if any.

    The opportunity to bring back the Democracy that we once had, at least
    not 100%, is in the hands of the LEGAL Fraternity, which if missed now
    based on personal agendas, the end of Democracy cannot be forestalled.
    It is idiotic to blame the Village Voters as the DN Bill was created
    to bring in these votes by 90%. The SL Sinhala Spring has to commence
    in Colombo for a change, led by BASL + + . Will it?

    • 0
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      punchinilame

      “It is high time a conclave of the BASL and FUTA be set-up in Colombo to push ahead the Spring”

      No chance.

  • 0
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    Thousands are ready, someone has to take the lead.
    Writing and reading alone no RESULT. IN THIS CASE lAWYERS MUST TAKE THE LEAD ,PEOPLE ARE READY.

    • 0
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      PT Dinal

      “Thousands are ready, someone has to take the lead.”

      If necessary China and India can supply thousands of white vans, non lethal transporter.

      • 0
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        The dawn of spring doesn’t happen automatically ! Using the word dawn is wrong because dawn happens everyday without any effort from us.

        We have to create this spring and without any will from the majority it is impossible.

        The majority of this Country is still wallowing in the war victory , gadding about town in their 3 wheelers and living off the income of there spouses in slavery in the Middle East.

        Is trying to wake them up a viable excercise ?

        • 0
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          Don Quixote

          The stupid people sleep walked into the current destructive pace. Don’t expect miracle from the people.

  • 0
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    The politicians including the UNP seem to have deserted the people. Nary a hum or whisper, nor a whine or whimper. Except for the JVP, TNL and DUNF others have surrendered to the the machinations of the Raja Paksha. It seems we are now living in the Banana Republic of Mihin Lanka, a country without laws or constitution.

    One of the foremost allegations against CJ B was that her husband was accused in a case of financial mismanagment. Lo and behold the lily white president now appoints a suspect as CJ who was personally involved in a case of fraud.

    The case effectively challenged the integrity and honesty of the then Attorney General Mohan Peiris (who is cited in his personal capacity) and the Secretary to the Ministry of Finance, PB Jayasundara, for their alleged misconduct and abuse of office held in trust. Plausible evidence presented before the Court alleged that both of them are directly responsible denying the government of public funds to the tune of over 619 million rupees defrauded by the Colombo Dockyard Company Ltd.

    Another accusation was that CJ B’s husband had accepted a govt appointment. Now we have a person who is directly involved with the govt as a legal adviser as well as director of lakna securities. So this appointment itselfs give lie to the acussations against CJ B.

  • 0
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    As a Singhalese,I am ashamed that we did hide when they came to the Tamils and thought those multi barrels which were shot with those machinery was decorated with the flags of their regiment which was blessed in the sacred Jaya Sri Maha Bodhi, as it was to destroy the LTTE and Prabhakaran though it did with 40,000 brothers and sisters and children of our countryman.

    now.. we are about to witness another round of genocide from the Rajapaksa and this time it will be Singhalese dominated South.

    Wakeup folks.. all of us have a right to stand up from this JaraPaksha junta.

  • 0
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    I totally agree with this writer, besides I anticipated a gallery of betrayers & cowards who cant withstand this regimes pressure including Wijedasa Rajapaksa.

    Only language this regime will understand is meet force with force just like in Syria, alas we cant find such bravery here in SriLanka.

    Let the Cowards lick the balls of Rajapaksas, allow the ignorant gullible poor Masses to continue suffering until a Lankan do or die movement rise its head.

  • 0
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    Common people lost their faith on Legal Eagles except bankrupt politicos. That’s what we have seen during last few weeks.Srilankan spring (if ever created) should conceived from rural folk who consist 90% of vote bank. Cannot be come from fake heros,NGO & middle class.

  • 0
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    Prabakaran must be laughing in his grave. What he could not do to Sri Lanka Idi Mahin is doing to the country.

    • 0
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      Ranil sprung the peace trap for VP and MR clobbered the trapped mouse. MR had the last laugh in that instance.Now Ranil has aided and abetted MR to set a trap for himself now. The results are yet to fully unfold. Ranil must have started chuckling now, in the hope that he will have the last laugh soon. Poor VP was reduced to ashes and cannot even laugh from his grave!

      Dr.Rajasingham Narendran.

      • 0
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        Dr.Rajasingham Narendran

        The missing characters in this soap opera are the International Community, India, China and Solheim, … etc.

        Hugely helped by VP, MR won the presidential elections. VP’s cunning plan is working. He helped MR to win the elections and in the process he sacrificed himself.

        Now the Sinhalese are reaping what they sew in the 1950s. VP is probably having the last laugh for laying the foundation for the destruction of Sinhala people.

        He sacrificed himself to destroy the Sinhala people.

        What a marvelous idea. Only VP is capable of such cunning plans.

    • 0
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      a change of heart? Will Leela (aka Leelaratne/Villager) agree with
      you?

      • 0
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        punchinilame

        “a change of heart? Will Leela (aka Leelaratne/Villager) agree with
        you?”

        Whom did you address your question?

  • 0
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    What we need is Action, not Words.

    A series of activities linked so that the objective will be achieved within a given time frame.

    Are we ready?

    Shall we start?

  • 0
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    Sri lankan spring- you must be joking. The Sinhala Bauddhaya will find an excuse to lick not only the feet but also the …. of any political leader.The bloody bhikkus will be there to tie pirith nool.To hell with all

  • 0
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    Many members of elitist organisations and professional bodies recently claimed that the ordinary people of Sri Lanka were “supreme”, in contrast to elected leaders and representatives.

    They, however, did not belong with the ordinary people, but used their magnitude to attempt to further a cause of justice. Ordinary people in Sri Lanka often never get to feel “supreme” in their daily lives. On the contrary, they suffer most, when the big fish fight for supremacy.

    Ordinary people must find a way to get good people to represent them at the highest level. If existing frameworks are deficient, then they need to be redefined or restructured in the best interests of society.

    The people must not be reduced to mere shadows that exist by virtue of the benign mercy of the powerful, while mouthing sychophantic praise to curry favour.If they feel unhappy with the status quo, they must collectively initiate ways to change it to suit the needs of the country.

  • 0
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    The. President should be arrested for his own admission of corruption of shaping up the fraud he alleges was committed by the CJs .If it does not happen during the time of this regime it must be done immediately a new Govt takes over.

  • 0
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    Today MARA brought “Sharia Law” upon you, what Saudis did to our Poor Rizana. While MARA did not protect Rizana, Opposition parties Did not Protect neither you nor we the Citizen. They all let us down.

    Tomorrow there will be another Rizana and Shirani waiting in MARA Dictatorial regime to send to gallows due to Invalid Opposition who live only to receive MARA left over Dog bones.

    But Madam we are there for you and we will not stop until we bring Justice to you.

    WE WILL NOT STOP WITH DICTATOR MARA FAMILY EITHER IN SRI LANKA OR OUTSIDE.

    Until Then May God Bless you and Protect you.

    ***** I think all Sri lankan Patriots should unite and LEAVE ASIDE THEIR JOBS, WORK AND SERVICES AND MAKE IT A PRIORITY TO SAFEGUARD OUR DEMOCRACY AND FREEDOM AS IF WE FAIL…………MARA WILL DEFINITELY COME AFRTER ALL OF US.

  • 0
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    The great majority of the near 75% inhabitant population is Sinhala Buddhists,and most of them are rural poor.

    Then there are Muslim people who are neary 12% and most of them are also poor urban and rural dwellers.

    Since Mr Sumanathiran is leading this crusade against the Govt and the Parliament to help the ex CJ, it is improper to include the poor Tamil people in this group,who are looking forward to a Economically better future and a peaceful and harmonious atmosphere where they can earn a quid and put the food on the table.

    Are we going to help them by organising them into civil disobedience campaigns and demonstrations to help people who have evrything?.

    It is true that these rich and powerful can not change regime nowadays, or even change directions according to the GPSs provided by their Western Allies.

    What is there for these poor inhabitants to come on to the streets and protest agaist a Govt which has povided them peace and freedom to make a living?.

    The organisers are of course in a win win situation with their Mobiles or should I say IPads and IFones with the US, UK, Canadian Diplomats in auto dial mode.

    As for the writer’s the high tech arguments about the despatch of this CJ, the answers can be clearly found in the article by our Internationally respected and well recognised Foreign Minister.

  • 0
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    Sumanasekera- you ask why the “poor inhabitants” would come on to the streets in protest when the government has given them “peace and freedom to make a living” ?

    Pardon me but you sound remarkably like an ancient colonialist sipping tea in his study wondering why India and SriLanka were asking to be free of the British when to the western mind ” the inhabitants” have what they need ” to make a living” You insult the intelligence of Sri-Lankan masses. They may fear for their lives yes, and may not be protesting now, as they remember burning tires, and are acquainted with white vans goons and Parliamentary thugs. But they want more than just “to make a living” thank you, as you naively hope. You may not understand these concepts (not that i blame you as they are clearly beyond even our rulers) but people know there can be no freedom without justice, truth and the rule of law. There is no point merely making a living when ones beloved land is slipping in to subjugation of an oligarchy of crooks! There are many who speak like you. Conscienceless! Untill one day,you are hit as well! Hit by the jagganaut of The “Royal Family” What if your sons and daughters, your pension, your reputation, your livelihood,your extended family were under threat?(I dont wish any of this upon you, but it can happen – to any of us! .. no one wished such a fate upon Rizana either but it happened..and we watched!

    House Maid or Chief Justice who cares..while injustice dances naked down our streets and folks like you advocate that we turn away in silent acquiescence.

  • 0
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    Jude Fernando:
    Thank you for a well-written and well-thought-out analysis of the (very sad) Sri Lankan reality. More than anything, it is not only realistic but reveals a commitment to democratic practice and the need for never letting up on its pursuit that is admirable.

  • 0
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    Eve, JVP heavy La Kantha expressed the same views as yours.

    He in fact wants you guys to kick Ranil out and get some one else who can muster the inhabitants and launch protest to roll Rajapaksa.

    Perhaps he has plans to get our ex CJ to dock on to our Ex General.

    You are most welcome to join him.

    Since Nanthikadal, travel time from Galle to Colombo is less than an hour on the Freeway.Just imagine if we had road blocks?.

    Super luxury coach from Wellawatta to Jaffna is only LKR 1000 although our Sinhala Buddhist devotees take the poor old CTB buses which are much cheaper.

    Children go to school by themselves and no armed guards manning the gates.

    Parents can go to work without worrying whether they will be back to make the evening meal.

    There are plenty of jobs even in the villages for poor lassies to work in a mini super market or a new generation vege stall.if they can’t get one in many Budget Odels which are in main towns.

    These are the human rights that matter and the great majority of the population are interested in.

    Putting food on the Table and providing the basics to their children in a peaceful environment is most fundamental of all human rights.

    This great majority infact nearly 75 % who are rural poor may be naive and do not understand your concepts . But they certainly ain’t fools.

    On the Colonial’s watch .my grand parents were sitting under a coconut tree and wondering where the next meal would come from.

    It is sad to see some of our politicians who want to take care of us peasants, still take instructions from the same Colonials.

  • 0
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    JUDE’S MIDSUMMER MADNESS – SYMPTOMS OF SPRING MANIA

    By Rajpal Abeynayake

    Jude Fernando’s second article on the advent of the spring in Sri Lanka, is infinitely more hilarious than the first.

    Why, he is much like Jehan Perera and Paikiasothy — who were down on their knees first saying that their own boss Prabhakran should be saved, and who were recently down on their knees again, wishing that our time honoured judicial institutions should collapse …

    This time, Jude is down on his knees saying ‘Spring, spring in Sri Lanka,’ and his cries are plaintive. Jude is crying out for a spring in Sri Lanka from Washington, or Boston is it? — where he has been living for the last fifteen years or thereabout.

    Protests at Tahirir Square, Egypt. File photo
    He has as much physical familiarity with Sri Lanka, these days, as an Icelander has with the Sahara.

    But let us ask Jude, what has the spring in fact sprung, for the people who experienced its affects in the Arab world for instance? In most of these countries of course, real tyrants who never held any elections such as Mubarak were overthrown in mass uprisings. That was all well and good.

    But eventually, so called newly minted democracies in these nations brought about chaos and situations that bordered on the anarchic, as it happened in Egypt for example. This led to a situation in which foreign interlopers could come in and make use of the political of chaos to diddle these countries’ resources.

    Multi-national companies
    The Libyan people would have not been too sorry to see the back of the voluble Gaddhafi for instance, but that did not mean that they got a whole lot of control, let us say, of the oil resources in that country.

    Talk about puppet governments, and one certainly has to point a finger at the puppet government in Libya. So spring is very much an exchange of one autocrat for the autocracy of multi-national companies and their agents, in the final analysis …

    Now what does Jude Fernando who fulminates at the mouth at capitalists, think about this kind of spring that in fact, makes capitalists fatter – and indeed for the most part, takes a country’s resources even further away from the reach of ordinary people? If this is what the spring has sprung in the Arab world — isn’t this an exchange of a lack of freedom, for the ‘freedom’ to be exploited by rapacious capitalists?

    The point is that Jude Fernando who quotes a faux Marx, and who also loves to drop a few names – Jose Marti, or Gramsci (!) — is in fact an agent of sorts of all of these rapacious capitalist forces that he so decries.

    Jude’s is the ultimate academic Trojan maneuver. His rant is against the capitalist forces at home, and those big bad agents of capital whom he sees as having, with tenaciously corrupt and irregular behaviour, taken over the machinery of State.

    Muammar Gaddafi

    Hosni Mubarak
    In other words Jude sees capitalism country by country.

    He sees each nation state as a watertight compartmentalized entity, in which indigenous home-grown capitalists regularly, while mimicking each other, exploit the masses of each of these national entities.

    In this respect, where exactly is Jude in the historical continuum? He is mentally in the 14th century or thereabout, where there were no seafarers, no global trade, and no trade headwinds that blew in foreign capital and in turn spawned a global culture of foreign control of countries and their resources.

    What Jude calls for in terms of an Arab Spring in Sri Lanka, is in fact a reinstatement of what Sri Lankans have been after centuries of trying, finally managed to shake off.

    Sri Lanka managed to shake off colonial rule and exploitation, only to be confronted with the rapacious greed of a local comprador class that had tied up with exploitative foreign capital.

    The best of our harbours and crucially important shipping lanes were being eyed covetously by foreign powers, for example.

    Real Arab Spring in Sri Lanka
    Total control of domestic consumption of vital commodities were under the absolute control of multinationals, and the exploitation of the domestic gas market by the foreign suppliers was something of an object lesson on how foreign multinationals could take total monopoly over a domestic supply and dictate prices. Eventually, after successive governments that were hand in glove with these forces of foreign capital were tried and discarded by the electors, there was the experiment with the UPFA under the current President Mahinda Rajapaksa, which though not perfect, has beat back the incursions by foreign capital in the main, and regained lost economic ground. For starters, we are not expending the major part of our earnings towards replenishing our stockpiles of weapons, or on buying fighter jets anymore. That was the real Arab Spring in Sri Lanka – the resurgent capability of protecting our resource base, and having control over our finances. But, Jude Fernando and his ilk, whether they operate from NGO hideouts in Colombo’s chic district, or elsewhere, be it in Washington DC or Boston, want spring in Sri Lanka which is a return to the winter that we had before the advent of the current Sri Lankan spring, which as I said in my previous article, is in fact a summer after a long winter of our discontent.

    By the way, oh Jude. Such a Judas.

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