18 June, 2018

Blog

South Asian Geopolitics From Sri Lanka’s Perspective

By Mangala Samaraweera

Building understanding and confidence is a tremendous task that will require great courage, political will and perseverance. But we have a useful example in the region in the form of ASEAN. Both South Asian and East Asian countries have a great deal to learn from this example as we navigate the transitions in the short, medium and long terms. And just as Singapore has over the years helped stakeholders come together and work towards their common interests in South-East Asia, Sri Lanka, the Gateway to South Asia, which is also fast becoming the hub of the Indian Ocean and who maintains excellent relations with all relevant stakeholders, too will play a constructive role in promoting dialogue and cooperation for peaceful development in the region.Minister Mangala Samaraweera's speech at the South Asia Diaspora Convention, Singapore Pic by MS' media

Foreign Minister Mangala Samaraweera’s speech at the South Asia Diaspora Convention, Singapore:

Following Minister Balakrishnan’s incisive speech and amidst such a distinguished panel, there is little unique insight that I can shed on the geopolitics of South Asia.

But one specific lens I can offer is that of South Asia’s only island state and the South Asian state with the largest per capita diaspora population.

From Sri Lanka’s perspective South Asian geopolitics is closely tied to Indian Ocean geopolitics and is undergirded by an over-arching environment of rising inter-connectivity and inter-dependence.

These two overlapping regions are inextricably linked. K.M. Panikkar, the late Indian diplomat and historian, correctly identified the Indian sub-continent as a quintessential Rimland; that is a region whose fundamental interests and future are tied to their coastlines and the seas beyond.

By using this appellation Panikkar was emphasizing that the Indian Sub-continent, divided from the Asian hinterland by the Himalayas, is – whether it likes it or not – geographically destined to look outward onto the Indian Ocean rather than inward into Tibet or Central Asia. And of course, over centuries and even millennia this fact of nature has resulted in the sub-Continent becoming the central node of trading links, cultural connections and diasporic communities that constitute the web of the Indian Ocean World. As a result, today, there is little doubt that the Indian Ocean is of central, if not pre-eminent, significance to South Asia.

In turn, at this time of global transitional, as the unipolar world order is on the wane with the rise of China and India, the Indian Ocean is quickly becoming a theater of global geopolitical interest and potential rivalry.

As such, it would be a great and ironical tragedy if Asia’s hard won independence, economic development and rising living standards led to conflict and violence rather than peace and stability. Therefore, it is our collective responsibility to identify and implement ways and means of ensuring that Asia’s rise creates the conditions for regional and global stability as opposed to chaos.

Such thought and action is of principal importance during this period of flux when the old order is being cast aside but the new order has yet to emerge. This period of strategic opportunity brings with it the prospect of putting in place the framework of values, principles, norms, conventions and institutions necessary for peace well before the mortar had dried on a faulty foundation.

This responsibility is made all the more acute as it is the first time that we Asians will be key players in determining the architecture of our regional maritime order which has been controlled by external powers more or less since Alfonso of Alberquerque made the Indian Ocean a Portuguese lake in the early 16th Century.

We in Sri Lanka have learnt our lessons the hard way. After years of violent conflict, which has created such a large, diverse and vibrant Sri Lankan diasporic community across the globe, we know that creating rules developed by legitimate, representative and inclusive institutions and imbued with universal values is essential for peace and stability.

I don’t think it would be naïve to say, that like in Sri Lanka, in a very fundamental sense, parties with an interest in the Indian Ocean have a greater convergence of interests than divergence. Interdependence between economies and peoples is at historically unprecedented highs, there is growing understanding that trade is imperative for development and there is little appetite for risking an optimistic future to conflict and instability.

In addition, there are also very specific instances were interests converge, for example both India and China have a shared concern with keeping the Hormuz and Red Sea choke-points open to free maritime passage.

In this context of macro-convergence and limited mciro-convergence a framework for regulating power in the Indian Ocean and beyond is required. Of course, such a framework must be flexible enough to respond to strategic changes, for example if unexpectedly fast Indian growth shifts the regional balance of power, but it must also effectively constrain, channel and process the exercise of power.

First, such a framework will need to maintain and uphold the rules-based international order and the principles that undergird them. It is this very order that has so successfully prevented a global conflict since the Second World War, provided a sense of security for millions of people living in small states such as mine and perhaps most importantly providing the bedrock for our unprecedented collective economic prosperity.

Preserving the sovereignty of states, including their sovereign right to pool sovereignty and share it, must naturally be a cornerstone of this framework for peaceful development. And in the context of the Indian Ocean ensuring peaceful development requires a stable maritime environment including the freedom of navigation and unimpeded commerce in accordance with international law. Naturally, the UN Convention of the Law of the Sea, which was significantly shaped by Sri Lankans such as Shirley Amerasinghe, is an integral component of this framework. But there are many other global commons and areas of connectivity, such as the environment, where rules-based systems at the global and regional level will become ever more necessary.

Great care must be taken to ensure that rules are perceived to be legitimate and institutions that create and enforce them are inclusive and representative. They must be accepted by all the major stakeholders, by the haves and the have-nots and they must be have the consent of both the strong and the weak. Whether we like it or not, global and regional bodies need to take into consideration balances of power – whether economic or otherwise. Failure to do so will lead to parallel, competing bodies or norms and ultimately lead to institutional instability and stress on the norms and rules that have served us so well.

Such a framework is unlikely to amount to much without a set of common values. One useful starting point for the development of common values for the Indian Ocean region and beyond is the Five Principles of Peaceful Coexistence outlined at the Colombo Powers Conference over half a century ago. The values underlying these principles can provide a starting point for updating and expanding the Five Principles to reflect the realities of an increasingly inter-connected, inter-dependent and complex world where the concept of Westphalian sovereignty is increasing outdated and irrelevant.

This brings me to my second point, interdependence. Perhaps more than any conscious design, the effects of technological innovation and globalization have helped avert conflict. We need to continue to build inter-dependence into our regional and global frameworks. Increasing economic interdependence between East Asia and South Asia – both through bilateral and ‘mega’ trade deals like the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership- can play an important role in strategically stabilizing the region. Improved sea, air and land connectivity through smarter regulation and greater investment in connectivity could also be an important catalyst. In this context, the Maritime Silk Road, Indo-Pacific Economic Corridor and other initiatives are very welcome, especially if they can provide a transparent, rules-based, inclusive, institutionalized and principled means of facilitating cooperative development.

Allow me to conclude by noting that building understanding and confidence is a tremendous task that will require great courage, political will and perseverance. But we have a useful example in the region in the form of ASEAN. Both South Asian and East Asian countries have a great deal to learn from this example as we navigate the transitions in the short, medium and long terms. And just as Singapore has over the years helped stakeholders come together and work towards their common interests in South-East Asia, Sri Lanka, the Gateway to South Asia, which is also fast becoming the hub of the Indian Ocean and who maintains excellent relations with all relevant stakeholders, too will play a constructive role in promoting dialogue and cooperation for peaceful development in the region.

Print Friendly, PDF & Email

Latest comments

  • 17
    1

    Good! Good! Good!

    Everything will be fine if we take turns in bending over to India and China in turn, and, oh yes, not giving the Dalai Lama a visa to visit.

    Whatever happened to Non-Alignment?

    • 2
      13

      We…if our very patriotic Lankans are willing to pay a bit extra of the VAT, then we needn’t be all that aligned.

      But as Ranil and Co. do not have the guts to go after the Real should-be VAT-payees (the Elite), so we have to be aligned.

      It’s better to have greater the China alignment (but US won’t let us).

      • 1
        8

        Well…*

        • 7
          0

          “”It’s better to have greater the China alignment (but US won’t let us).””

          Roosevelt and the American public were hoodwinked for billions of dollars by Russia’s Stalin and China’s Mao during WW2 to create their totalitarian regimes.
          So it is understandable that the sole winners of WW2 the americans will stop any marriage between any nation that was once ruled by europeans from becoming a communist regime. Congo independence is the stark truth and now its Sudan once more.Burma is still reeling.
          As it is both these socialist/communist regimes lose their quality of life when America sneezes.

          You like the rest of sinhala buddhist have never read beyond a local newspaper.

          • 1
            12

            Garuda,

            Persons like you read a hellava lot, but can’t think beyond – dull unanalytical mind.

            US and the other Western nations was certainly riled up against communist regimes because they were a block on US’s rabid original money creation. And money creation didn’t come from thin air, but required whole continents to comply to make the creation work. Nowadays, capitalism has formed a more honorable creative process. They see a better social order in socialized capitalism. And that is what is direly needed for Sri Lanka.

            A person like you however, likes to sit minting money out of the backs of Sinhala servants without paying honorable taxes. You must be a caste-systemed Hindoo.

            • 2
              0

              Since when is Singapore part of South Asia!

              Not a single south Asian leader went to this Singapore show with the usual rhetoric except Ranil and Mangy!

              Sad state of affairs that Singapore is now leading South Asia and organizing South Asia Diaspora conferences when a South Asian Country should be doing this?!

              • 4
                0

                MR1 introduced `helicopter money` of Japan and MR2 is continuing with it.
                Some of the excess helicopter money was swapped with India/Modi,Arun on 15-01-2015- US $ 1.5 billion for SLR.
                Japans public debt: Public debt: 227.9% of GDP (2015 est.) CIA/World Bank. the money is given to friends of Abe economy.
                Matara kattaya, hoodwinked the willing Jaffna fishermen of the UK Diaspora(boat people) and got the vote now he has gone to Lankan boat people of ASEAN.

              • 0
                6

                Don Stanley,

                Aren’t we burning with shame!

                • 0
                  0

                  Ha ha try the free psychiatric ward of the west they will entertain you

            • 5
              0

              “”Persons like you read a hellava lot, but can’t think beyond – dull unanalytical mind.””

              We manufacture engineering products in the west because `we read and understand` unlike bath guli granny thirisanno blabbering nonsensical garbage. Your statement to SK was to rob the man who has worked hard for a living and is enjoying life in his retirement- Just like Srimao, NM, Colvin et al now every scallywag. – You recently ran away to west to like off the begging bowl!

              “US and the other Western nations was certainly riled up against communist regimes because they were a block on US’s rabid original money creation.”

              Russia and China never took centre stage until the American finance of WW2. it’s only when UK decided to introduce `diesel` in lieu of steam that patent rights came into play and the military bases to stop counterfeiting of money and wealth. You have no Chinese genes to be pampered but would be made slaves like has happened to the burmese or eastern europeans until the west rescued them.
              The island your fathers and mothers entered as `servitude` still carries the begging bowl. Like most African and Asian nations that fought for independence you are in the bog known as `smelly ambude` no new infrastructure to international standards and the ones you thought you knew` panditayo` puddhu not buddhu are deep in the bog- Gas pipe line to homes- where is it??
              When Lanka is bombed the tamils and sinhala settlers will go with a wimper like syria or libya or iraq.

              This is how western learned men performed unlike ambude with `starving culture of gautama era.
              Lee K.Y.,was identified as an agnostic[120] on several occasions, notably during an interview with Goh Keng Swee in 1983 when the latter identified S. Rajaratnam and Lee as agnostics.
              After years of trial and error, Lee and his cabinet decided the best way to boost Singapore’s economy was to attract foreign investments from the multinational corporations (MNCs). By establishing a First World infrastructure and standards in Singapore, the new nation could woo American, Japanese and European entrepreneurs and professionals to set up base here. By the 1970s, the arrival of MNCs like Texas Instruments, Hewlett-Packard and General Electric laid the foundations, turning Singapore into a major electronics exporter the following decade.[55] Workers were frequently retrained to familiarise themselves with the work systems and cultures of foreign MNCs. The government also started several new industries, such as steel mills under National Iron and Steel Mills, service industries like Neptune Orient Lines, and the Singapore Airlines.
              almost 70 years and lankets have proved they have no strong work ethic- begging bowl and 80% external debt $$ 50 billion on the rise!

              Lee’s achievements in Singapore had a profound effect on the Communist leadership in China, who made a major effort, especially under Deng Xiaoping, to emulate his policies of economic growth, entrepreneurship and subtle suppression of dissent. Over 22,000 Chinese officials were sent to Singapore to study its methods.[4] He also had a major influence on thinking in Russia in recent years.[130]
              Other world leaders also praised Lee. Henry Kissinger once said that Lee was “One of the asymmetries of history”. Former British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher praised “his way of penetrating the fog of propaganda and expressing with unique clarity the issues of our time and the way to tackle them”. A later British Prime Minister, Tony Blair, called Lee “the smartest leader I ever met”.

              We never lived off lazy stupid sinhala labour. Now its all about robotics and getting rid of the excreta.
              See Brexit means immigrants out and if you pollute the bombs will follow that Xi learnt recently now Modi is tamely following- green policy.

          • 4
            4

            Tell me O the learned Garuda..where is the communism/socialism in Russia and China..what do YOU read? Foreign Newspapers from the 1970s?

            • 5
              0

              Stupid copycat go hug the muslim Al Gore the northern ice would melt and you find pee lam there because Iceland never sold land to chinese billionaire- Iceland have the high tech and live off it.
              Like Thomas J. I don’t read newspapers but see the ads.

              C/R both know when to run and are hiding behind `new capitalist culture for few` over 20 oligarchs live at westminster while the folk get fucked with doses of social order and secret police.

              Heritage- you are fit for social/commu slave labour isn’t it??

      • 10
        2

        So you are the new diaspora `the one who escaped by boat recently to the west.?? The dole money must be enough for you now to taste mouth wash than salt water.- gammeyata magic??
        School drop out eating bath guli: More VAT less FDI

        • 1
          10

          No! Not me at all!

          • 6
            0

            Moron born to lie like the bottom half burnt hamburger.
            Having said it on CT while clinging onto guitar – next to the sea- salt water for washing mouth and you had to be explained about mouth wash which does not contain Goo from the sea.- fault the socialist regimes got rid of BCC the manufactures toiletries and suppliers of home gas pipelines.

      • 2
        0

        The ‘very patriotic’ Lankan RTF ran away to the US when her husband won a US lottery visa and never came back to SL but is serving the white man as a slave. While licking the bones that the white man throw at her, criticizing the country that is feeding her and praising SL that she once kicked and left shows one of the best examples of hypocrisy.

        • 0
          0

          Not like that at all!

  • 3
    11

    The procurist who dance to the tune of his Tamil Chauvinist masters! What an insult to the great predecessors in the calibre of Lakshman Kadirgarmar who had delighted the coveted post this pimp currently is handling.

    • 7
      0

      Lakshman was CBK’s Tamil sacrificial lamb.
      You could have done better talking about your women house maids at Singapore Korea- the second largest export earner. First the tamil tea plucker. [Edited out]

  • 1
    1

    Though,Building understanding and confidence is a tremendous task that will require great courage, political will and perseverance, for this Guy,It seems as easy as designing ladies underwear.

  • 3
    8

    SNAKE OIL SALESMAN:

    “Snake Oil Salesman is someone who knowingly sells fraudulent goods or who is themselves a fraud, quack, or charlatan”

    At present there are so many snake oil salesmen in Sri Lanka pretending to be patriots and trying to fix the economy. Ranil Wickramasinghe , Mangala Samaraweera and Malik Samarawickrama are leading this charlatan club now. These three individuals this week at tax payers’ expense have spent some time in Singapore attending a gathering sponsored partly by the remnants of “PRABHAKARAN INC.” Ranil and Mangala have been among the speakers.

    Mangala has said;

    “But one specific lens I can offer is that of South Asia’s only island state and the South Asian state with the largest per capita diaspora population”

    “We in Sri Lanka have learnt our lessons the hard way. After years of violent conflict, which has created such a large, diverse and vibrant Sri Lankan diasporic community across the globe, we know that creating rules developed by legitimate, representative and inclusive institutions and imbued with universal values is essential for peace and stability.”

    Mangala is pandering to the political whims of the remnants of “Prabhakaran Inc.” currently living lavishly in Australia, Canada, UK, Norway, Singapore and Malaysia. Prabhakaran was buried somewhere in Sri Lanka, but Mangala and Ranil must understand that remnants of Prabhakaran’ s organization is very much alive. Appeasing to these sworn enemies of our nation is not going to bring any lasting peace to Sri Lanka. Let them live wherever they live legally and lavishly. They are citizens of those countries, you have given them dual citizenship and that is the end of it. Just because three of you are leading SNAKE OIL SALESMEN, we don’t have to accommodate these snakes inside our “Sarongs”.

    Further more you have stated:

    “As such, it would be a great and ironical tragedy if Asia’s hard won independence, economic development and rising living standards led to conflict and violence rather than peace and stability. Therefore, it is our collective responsibility to identify and implement ways and means of ensuring that Asia’s rise creates the conditions for regional and global stability as opposed to chaos.”

    Who are trying to brain wash; SWRDB, JRJ,SIRIMA, CHANDRIKA, PREMADSA, RANIL, MAHINDA, these were the leading people responsible for squandering hard won independence. They brought ethnic division and destruction in every sphere of national economy, social well being, and religious harmony, Above all you and they stalled my childhood and millions of other childhoods. These fellows with the help guys like you, your father and other bunch of unethical political henchmen denied our birth rights. Birth rights for basic needs, safety/security, education, respect/dignity above all the opportunity define our own destiny and think “Big” including governing ourselves.

    You , those mentioned above and those who currently represented in the parliament are TOTALLY responsible for chaotic economic situation making us the beggars of the world, violence and uncertainty in our lives. It has nothing to do with Regional or Global politics. So far only Charlatans have ruled our beautiful country masquerading as good SIHALA BUDDHISTS. You are masking the real facts as usual about what happened to us and trying to benefit from a rift that you were responsible for creating. Your analysis is not worth even the paper serviette you have used at “Buddha Bar” in New York City.

    • 6
      0

      South Asian state with the largest per capita diaspora population”

      Diaspora is a name coined for the jewish boat people. The main boat people to australia are sinhalese. How come??

      • 5
        0

        Good point Timbuttu. Until early 90s most of Sinhalese economic/freedom migrants to Australia are graduates (mostly Eng) and German Tech graduates. But most people who migrated after year 2000 , 2005 are NOT Sri Lankan graduates. However, 60~70% of Eng graduates leave the country within 3~4 years of their graduation.. But others who settle in the West using loop holes of the system are proportionately very high.
        Ranbandu believe “remnants of Prabhakaran’ s organization is very much alive”. I reluctantly agree. But what could be the main reason? It is because “main causes of creating Prabakaran organization” are still there and alive.
        And Ranbandu thinks political leaders are “TOTALLY responsible for chaotic economic situation making us the beggars of the world”. Again I only dispute the “TOTALLY”.. So we, the public, our lethargic inheritance , has nothing to with it.. And our stupidity of reelecting and promoting our political leaders in the last 60~70 years is NOT a core issue?
        SL workers’ productivity is less than 40% (do you need proofs?) whereas West , Japan , China maintain this above 80% with producing high tech quality products which are saleable in open market.. Why can’t we do that? Because of our politicians #$@$? Because old colonial masters $#$@? Because of cruelty Americans and the West $#%@?
        Or is there something wrong with our genetic inheritance and high proportion of STUPID “Pandithayos”????

  • 3
    1

    USSR,Yugoslavia, Indonesia, Pakistan all Midle east and Africa has fragmented or fragmenting . next is UK and then India . After two centuries an actual balance of power will occur.And SL also will fragment soon.

    • 7
      1

      “”And SL also will fragment soon. “”

      That soon won’t come for generations to socialist lanka north or south.
      Within the present government’s term the external debt would equal the GDP.

      In all the countries mentioned the CIA had involvement in taming Russia and it does not need Lanka to tame russia or china when there are Dallas Drones operational from the west.

      Only a world war would change the dynamics of lanka as it happened to British Raj rule of Ceylon.

  • 2
    13

    Mangala,

    Can’t you understand that ASEAN is of egalitarian philosophies: Buddhist, Islamic and Chinese-Confucianism?

    Now compare that to Caste-Ridden Hindu society of the great Indian sub-continent!

    And you want little egalitarian Buddhistic Sri Lanka to join up with that Western-Capitalism-gone-mad in that Mega-Giant who has tried to take us over for millennia.

    Dravidians might have a small desire to become Buddhist like us, Hindus will never allow them. (Well, it might happen eventually, but it will take over a 1,000 years.)

    So what you have written on paper is a very encouraging, though a wishful thought.

    In the meantime, let’s declare Buddhism as the guiding philosophy, and hold onto China’s hand more, shall we?

    The most frightening thing about your manifesto is the “sovereign right to pool sovereignty and share it.”

    • 1
      0

      “little egalitarian Buddhistic Sri Lanka”

      Correction: little Barbaric Buddhist Sri Lanka where the Buddhist monks behave like uncivilized barbarians…

  • 5
    9

    That is it boys..

    It is all about bending over to the Diaspora, pleasing the Hindians and give them ETCA so that the 500 Million unemployed and under employed can come to Srilanka.

    China drops the growth a few notches and the West is in turmoil.

    No jobs for the young people, including Uni Graduates. Govts are struggling to find money for Welfare payments.

    Which must be affecting the incomes of our Diasporians too.whom Mangalan is bragging about.

    Are the Diasporians going to help Managalana and Batalanada to bring home the Bacon ?.

    Smart money would definitely be on ” No way”.

    Diaspora only wants revenge , punishment and federal Homeland for Sambandan in a nutshell.

    Billionnaire Disporaian Rajaratnam is doing eleven years for trying to make extra few Million with a Hindian.

    The Diasporean whom Batalanada imported from Singapore shafted the Yahapalana Tax payers, and ripped off 2.95 Percent on LKR 200 Billion to be paid for 30 years.

    That is form analysis the smart punters would be looking at.

  • 0
    0

    sRI lANKA HAS THE LARGEST PER CAPITA DIASPORA?

    THAT’S ALSO THE MOST OPPRESSED TO FLEE THE COUNTRY AFTER EVERY RACIAL RIOT AND SCARED TO COME BACK WITH THE CONTINUED MILITARISATION.

    • 2
      0

      All that started with the language policy, sterling companies out TRP holders out and brand of socialism/communism of the sinhala only.
      Then the weeping widow found that folk were rummaging the bins than working for alla battala manioc unlike the chinese who were starving yet slaving for 2 eggs per week for 8 family members.
      With 80% population of sinhalese there are more sinhalese boat people(diaspora than tamil or muslim) UK has over 350k sinhalese than the tamils how come? JVP first… Even buddhist monks are on accepted asylum after being paid for bombing dalada.

  • 1
    1

    Tinker Taylor Soldier Spy…
    Taylor in a ill fitting suit that get paid by dollars to lick western arse.. This guy got a brown tongue ..
    What a disgrace to the Sinhalese race..

    • 1
      1

      Well said, I may add he has got a brown nose too.

      • 1
        0

        Boys why do you think He picked Rimming as his Headline. !!!!!

        • 0
          0

          “”He picked Rimming as his Headline. !!!!!””

          chee Chee Guvera Govi man on Gleneagles malt scotch was holding the candle with one hand during his SLFP days??

  • 5
    0

    “”stakeholders, too will play a constructive role in promoting dialogue and cooperation for peaceful development in the region.””

    The spenders are the europeans and the hoarders are in Asia.

    SL main buyer is the USA not ASEAN.

    nothing is going to change but deteriorate until 21st January 2017.

    Obama and Bush twisted the EU arm too much creating a islamic invasion psycho` and it’s come to roost. Nett result Brexit.
    UK is going to have a tough time with services and europe accepting it- the level of British education and trade unionism.

    Asia has many hoarders and less investors because politicians are `warlords`

  • 2
    1

    Mr Samaraweera, I remember you as a “doer” even when you were part of CBK’s kitchen cabinet. I think you even did what GR did later in cleaning up pavement hawkers in Colombo around Odels etc and people protesting just the way you guys protested GR doing the same later when he made Colombo a really clean city. I had the pleasure of having a nice chat with you at a Club once and you were one of the most approachable guys back then too despite all the massive terrorist attacks in SL and LTTE suicide cadre all over Colombo.

    Just one point of order. You keep mentioning ASEAN. Do you remember when your current party’s leader JRJ foolishly thought he could get SL to be an ASEAN member and was laughed off? SL is geographically, (whether we like it or not) part of S.Asia. Racially, and culturally SL is not part of ASEAN. So do not make the same mistake. JRJ showed India the middle finger in hostility. He also was a product of the old school anti communist pro US mentality to the core. So a lot of foolish moves he made caused India to look at SL with anxiety and anger. I know this because one time I even carried a personal letter from Mrs. B to Indira Gandhi who resided at Safdarjung Road in N.Delhi. I used to talk to my aunt at length and even accompanied her on a tour in India once and I will always be proud to have known her and called her True Grit(say what you may about her policies and weakness and I will admit to it all and I am sure some will post very insulting ad hominem attacks now; it does not bother me because when I was at school and people were suffering from haal polu, food queues and rations lots of my classmates used to call her profane names and got a big kick out of insulting me but we did not have white vans!) but the fact is survival depends on excellent relations with India. I feel India will always be the big bully , like the thug in my class who is a top UNPer now who would steal the lunch money from kids in lower grades and grab their paan and parippu meals and gnaanakathaa too. But MR made a mistake by overplaying the China card. India is the key.

    Do not make the mistake of overplaying the US card. I know you are one of those Colombo liberals with a decent mind on the ethnic issue. But US is fickle like many others.

    Some of your top ministers insulted China and accused it of being the economic hatchet man of Asia. WTF? what happened? You realized USA wants a Shylockian pound of flesh but with not much else. We all know that they spent millions of dollars to ensure the UNP won. That is not out of love but out of trying to meet fulfill their needs for a nice warm port in S.Asia for strategic reasons.

    Now how does a small nation survive? By being nice to everyone. But if you antagonize China, then none of the potential FDIs and aid will come anymore. No one doubts China also has interests. But you think the US will identify with a small brown nation in Asia out of love? Can you give me instances of that?

    India, then China and then indeed the export markets like US matters because they are in the top 3 export market category for SL products.

    You are in a way an idealist but the US Agenda is different now. IF Obama’s Secy of State Hillary loses the election you have a new set of challenges. Trump has already named India and China and Vietnam as nations that conduct unfair trading practices and has threatened tariffs and trade wars. SL falls into that category by default. So watch out for the polls and if it looks like he is winning, you will need to send a powerful delegation of smart people like Eran and Harsha to present to Trump. Trump likes small brief reports and presentations. Any report to him should talk about the long term friendship and strategic value but also harp that SL has defeated terrorism. Why do you think a demagogue like him is even this close to becoming President? People are tired of political correctness and US’s perceived and real weakness to confront Islamic Jihadists and ISIS until it became this hydra headed monster.

    If HC wins,(right now it is 50-50) then you know, no matter what you do the Tamil Eelam Diaspora lobby made of rich doctors and lawyers who will never come back to live in Jaffna will push hard for Eelam and HR issues.

    Please note how Obama dismembered Libya. Now the small Central government in Tripoli is miffed that the French are backing a war lord in the Eastern part to fight ISIS.

    Look at their creation, the oil rich South Sudan: what an epic failure; locked up in a civil war where the President and Vice President are at loggerhead. Look at Syria: now the US and France; they have killed hundreds of civilians in their bombing campaign.

    So watch out Mr. S. AS Henry Kissinger said, there are no permanent friends or enemies; just permanent interests. As long as you are doing US bidding or going along with their policy prescriptions you will be ok. They would prefer a total RW regime and probably look at My3 with annoyance but watch out.

    Now why do you think Hillary is opposed to TPP now? NAFTA did a big number on US manufacturing jobs; they are not coming back but Ross Perot was right when he talked about the “Giant Sucking Sound” and Trump is opposed to TPP and any trade partnerships which are unfair to the USA. So why are you chaps rushing with ECTA?

    There is only one thing I did not like when you were such a powerful minister in CBK’s regime. You made racist personal insults about Susanthika Jayasinghe a REAL Sri Lankan STAR in the global world of sports even bigger than Cricket because there was some scandal about her and another kitchen cabinet member of her regime. Track and Field is a true global sport unlike Cricket.

    Hiding behind parliamentary privilege you insulted her by commenting on her looks “She looks like a black african”. I was very upset and so were a lot of people. It was a shockingly racist thing to say. We Mr.S, are NOT Aryan. We all look a mixture of Dravidian and Negroid races with our DNA and phenotypical appearances not being from Aryan stock. Even if Sinhalese are a hela group then Bengalis and Biharis are not by any means Aryan. Please look at yourself in the mirror. We all have the bulbuous noses, thicker lips than white people. We are SHORT(Bengalis/Bangladeshis and we are very much the same too). My white friends were laughing when they read that story (back in 1997 I think it was). I put it to arrogance of power or youth but make no mistake, no matter how westernized we are in lifestyle, food and drink we are not Aryan. That is just a scientific fact of life.

    I digressed but here is a humble request. Please ask your current party leader Hon RW to apologize to the Tamil people of Sri Lanka for Black July. Black July happened under JRJ and he did NOTHING or let it happen either with tacist or overt approval. For 4 days SL became a savage nation where innocent Tamils were burnt alive and robbed and even children slaughtered. This is like what happened in India the next year. CBK Apologized to Tamil people. Please note not a single race riot(after 1958 which had some give and take) happened in CBK’s or Mrs.B’s watch. Call them what you may but JR the Shakespearean Historian with western classics played a dirty game. SL became a PARIAH nation in the eyes of the world. What was the end result ? 26plus years of hell and war and tears. It was also JRJ and his openly hostile policies towards India that them support terrorism inside SL. An apology from RW will go a wrong way given that Saturday is 23rd and will always be remembered by many. It is Black July that made LTTE a set of heroes. We as Buddhists should know we alone are responsible for our actions and the consequences of our actions. We cannot get away by saying we “confess” to a Deity that may or may not exist.

    Thanks and good luck in whatever you are doing amidst really trying times and global uncertainty about Islamic Jihadi terrorism. Watch out for that evil to strike in India and SL if you are not careful. No one should root for failure. Everyone should root for the success of this government.

    It is not in the stars to hold our destiny but in ourselves: William Shakespeare

    • 4
      1

      All that is well and good. when cornered you once denied that you were a relative of SirMao but a school teacher. Anyway your punjabi tappas won’t take you long way. Lanka’s main imports are from India and main export USA (info CIA/fact book)
      Exports – partners:
      US 26.1%, UK 9%, India 7.2%, Germany 4.3% (2015)
      Imports – partners:
      India 24.6%, China 20.6%, UAE 7.1%, Singapore 5.9%, Japan 5.7% (2015)

      you too are the `political correct class` so you are unable to read The Trump.
      His response to media in November CNN video was I will befriend Xi and make Kim Jong-un vanish- Putin and Xi are already discussing it in preparation.

      About Colombo Tamils of 83 they will make lanka another Israel constant war. you are done so CBK and crocodile tears are good for South African BTF `boat people`. the JT’s villagers are running on Colombo steam that they have lost.
      Mangala is a matara kattaya and thug at times.
      Trump cannot be fooled by RW or Mangala. He is Scot and don’t be suprised if Bangladesh is bombed before pakistan.
      The man who went with a chit from the weeping widow knows only his well but does not know even the situation at europe or central india the hub of the hindu warrior – Gandhi family became muslim (iranian parsee) then italian what offbeat aryans.

      • 0
        2

        I never narrated what it was buddy. Why ?Because Najja wasalothi najjaja hothi brahmano, kammana wasalahothi kamman hothi brahmano. I am a teacher and proud of it; It is not relevant to what I wanted to share here. HATRED and violence has seen SL go down the tube so much. No need to provoke violence and no need to create conditions for violence. I am not bothered by personal attacks. LET the LANKANS living inside LAnka decide it. Mr. Samaraweera is making a mistake if he thinks LTTE diaspora will change their stripes. And not one of us who live on our salaries and not make money on connections or by being made ambassadors will go back because whatever said and done a professional middle class university teacher can live on his or her salary, buy a car and pay a mortgage in the western nations we live in. So go ahead but PLEASE DO NOT start violence again. Everyone loses. Pretty simple living, no living beyond means and very proud of the love and kindness of real friends and real colleagues not social media bloggers. This includes marine officers who asked me to write letters of recommendation for them to go to grad school and who shined in my classes. Includes two amazing people; one first generation Hispanic who still speaks english differently and ther other who proudly used to say “mano I am just a redneck from New Mexico and I am afraid of guns because I had to use them in war”. BOTH of those are my beloved students who got Purple hearts. So say whatever you want about bad times.

        • 2
          0

          “”I never narrated what it was buddy.””
          You are forgetful- I don’t think so but lying to keep it up.
          You were caught on CT on an article by CBK- the way you honoured let the cat out of the bag. stop it now and refer your own statement.
          Read BBC and Trump on US/Canada statement which CT is yet to post.

        • 0
          0

          “”This includes marine officers who asked me to write letters of recommendation for them to go to grad school and who shined in my classes. Includes two amazing people; one first generation Hispanic who still speaks english differently and ther other who proudly used to say “mano I am just a redneck from New Mexico and I am afraid of guns because I had to use them in war”. BOTH of those are my beloved students who got Purple hearts. So say whatever you want about bad times. “”

          The Ratwatte is afraid of own shadow! When London was blitzed the giant slept yet funded Russia, China and most of the allies. Until Pearl harbour. Then all Italians and Japanese in the USA were jailed. Like them you have no old European blood and are like the blacks. That is not my problem and my grandfather did not fight WW2 as commander for idiots like you to tell me stories. My mum threw the X’mas cake back at your aunt we lived parallel to Sirmao. home. Trump plans something better than Roosevelt- do nothing let the rest of the world kill themselves and we will reform the remaining. Take care old goat Lankan. Ranil wants to become Governor General like old Ceylon. He would undo your family doings and that suits him but will he get it is an option for India not Gandhi family. Sikkim, Nagaland are real.

      • 0
        1

        So what is the point you are trying to make besides insults ? Not see a point; Europe is in trouble and so is Asia with ISIS. What has that got to do with anything else? JRJ presided over the 1983 black july. Are you saying that was ok? Feel free to be insulting but ain’t it amazing to be on social media ? When we bleed we do not bleed Vellala or Govigama or White or black. WE bleed red in A, B, AB and O positive or negative. THERE IS ENOUGH BLOOD IN SRI LANKA to last 2 centuries. It deserves 2 centuries of peace. I am proud to be a teacher and never called myself a professor because that is a tenured rank and I am not tenured. And yes proud to have a mother and grandfather who were teachers and lecturers. So you can say that an SL equivalent is lecturer Dr. Stungun.

        • 2
          0

          Get this into that head SirMao of banda island.
          pissu diass pora!!

          “If you prick us, do we not bleed? if you tickle us, do we not laugh? if you poison us, do we not die? and if you wrong us, shall we not revenge?”. – (Act III, scene I).”

          ― William Shakespeare, The Merchant of Venice

    • 0
      4

      Well said! Should be placed as an article on CT (and other places).

    • 0
      1

      Mano Ratwatte :

      Surely it ‘s not so much the ETCA (some ETCA with India is needed)…..it’s more about the FTA with Singapore-ASEAN, with Singapore Tamils building Port-City via Lankan bonds coalesced undemocratically (and therefore illegally) with Tamil diaspora bonds. USA will give us due respect if we used democratic means to do away with Singapore-FTA, or do away with Port-City in the first place.

      • 1
        0

        “”Tamil diaspora bonds. “”

        pol kattu handa! school drop out with foot in mouth racist symptoms for more bath gulli.

        you have no vocabulary and the cause is you have not read beyond night school.

        AM is not from `diaspora` stock but you are presently from dia ass pora. He is from immigrant stock.

        Ratwatte is kandayan govigama and you hate them.

        MR2 is only extending MR1 `helicopter money` now that MR1 exhausted `quantitative easing` both are economic terms so refer the economic dictionary

  • 1
    2

    Mr. Samaraweera,

    Also theory and reality are different here in the US. The divide between black and white is far deeper and older than any gap between Sinhalese and Tamils who share the same culture. It is based in history and racial discrimination by law here. Why do you think a group like Black Lives Matter(BLM) arose? I once had some white kids in my Freshmen seminar class I teach, saying BLM is a terrorist organization. I like to play devil’s advocate and let them speak out about it. I also had one team that did a presentation on global terrorist organizations and after their first draft of the term paper, I asked them how come they had not even heard of the LTTE? Seriously Mr. S. They talked about Catholic IRA, PLO and Hamas but they had no mention of the LTTE. I sent them back to the library!

    I also have an incredible core of former students who learned about Terrorism and Sri Lanka(to be honest most Americans had not heard of SL until the Tsunami and even now lots of them feel SL is part of India). Amongst the very few things I am proud of is the love and loyalty I get from some of my former students who were Veterans who served in wars(including the false war based on lies in Iraq) and sacrificed so much. Also as part of brilliant US policies when soldiers serve they have access to what is called the GI Bill that PAYS for them to go to school. So one guy I had was on an Intel team that led to the capture of Saddam; another served in secret bases we the Americans have in Saudi Arabia 50 miles from their holy muslim sites. Two of my students came back with Purple Heart awards given for combat related injuries. They both suffered from PTSD. Two brothers of two amazing professors who were our friends in my previous Uni served and they are liberal democrats. They are not diehard fanatics or Republicans. They just answered the call of duty. One I am proud to say is an active duty officer in the Marine Corps who got his masters recently. Still in touch with me via social media like all my veteran students: a lot of them have really top jobs now in IT.

    So a lot of them will say and it is also a fact, Americans do not give a damn/f*^k about Collateral damage and civilian deaths in general. In recent times of course they have had to deal with the social media generation and be embarrassed in the eyes of the world over Abu Graib etc but rendition still continues and torture still continues and as they say “water boarding is not torture”. So Mr. S, my point is it is a complicated world. It is not black and white and straight.

    I hope there will never be war and hate in SL again against any ethnic group. Please get Mr. Ranil W to apologize to the Tamil people for the pogrom in 1983. That was the seminal dark chapter in SL’s modern history that all peace loving Lankans of the diaspora or within must be ashamed of and never forget.

    I am not sure what it is in the Sinhala nature to undercut and root for failure when the other party is in power. All of you were gleeful when there were military setbacks under MR. You all insulted Sarath Fonseka and the military almost daily until the war was won. Now the new MR opposition screams daily after having failed to respect the rule of law and the judiciary about how they are “victims”. As a top CEO in a private sector organization and a good friend of mine that I argue like hell (in colombo) said “in Sri Lanka, unlike Indians, people wait for you to fail; even inside the company people just watch and wait for you to make a mistake and then laugh because they are happy that the person failed”

    As Mr Mervyn Koch’s,( a great gentleman and a very able manwho was a civil servant in SL and left in disgust during the socialist queue days where English speakers were marginalized) wife used to sing after a couple of drinks “Sinhalaya modaya kavun kanna yodhaya” at Queen’s house. The sinhala staff were jealous of his abilities and tried to get him into trouble over his wife’s silly drunken songs at the Official quarters. Nothing doing; the Governor General at that time did not punish his best English Office Assistant because of his wife’s silly songs.

    Mamer Sinhala Diaspora Pissek.

  • 1
    0

    Old man you are past tense. Medical Operations are conducted remotely by China from 2010.

    “That is not out of love but out of trying to meet fulfill their needs for a nice warm port in S.Asia for strategic reasons.””

    Trump.–
    Trump says US may abandon automatic protections for Nato countries.
    Asked about Russian aggression towards Nato countries in the Baltic region, Mr Trump suggested the US might abandon the longstanding protections offered by the US to such nations…….
    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-us-canada-36852805

    He also suggested he would close US bases abroad. “If we decide we have to defend the United States, we can always deploy” from American soil, he said “and it will be a lot less expensive”…..

    Stuff your strategic place island- we live in a sort of telepathic world thanks to technology.
    I wont be suprised if Lanka is officially the next state of India for peace to prevail in the region.
    Will he close Diego Garcia where there are just 7 marines and umteen filipinos and sinhalese ordelies – we will know by January 2017.
    There are many highly qualified Hindu Desi Americans in the republican party. Unlike the Desai corner shop boot lickers.Watch out!!

  • 0
    0

    Interesting. Yes now there is a distinct possibility that Donald Trump will capitalize on fear to win. He echoed Richard Nixon with the “Law and Order Candidate” speech last night.

    Now he is not the first one to talk about NATO. In fact it was President Obama who was annoyed with Cameron for not playing and paying their fair share to NATO obligations. On NATO and UK; do not forget even President Obama lashed out at David Cameron when he was PM. He flat out criticized Europe for dropping the ball and creating the mess in Libya AFTER they said they wanted to take the ” leadership role”. So Trump is not far off.

    It was not Trump, President Obama who talked about “free riders” amongst key nations who do not play their fair share. (France and UK both are examples of such free riders). It was President Obama who told Cameron off for being stingy and not spending 2% of their national income on defense as per commitments to NATO. Obama did not even hide his contempt. So Trump is not far off. This and fear of ISIS, and illegal immigrants and a segment of the population who have been left behind may just push him through in the key battleground states. There is a lot of unfair fear peddling to paint all illegal immigrants as criminals because it resonates with his key voter bloc. Without illegal immigrants and their contribution to the economy everything will become unaffordable to most middle class and working class Americans; from hotels, to chicken to vegetable to their lawns illegals do work Americans do not want to do; but the system is broken. So that is why the nation has swung so much to the right now about it. Illegals harvest crops, work in slaughter houses, and work in construction everywhere and most of them are hardworking people looking for a better life. Any place in the USA : small and medium businesses run by Republicans use illegal immigrants openly as roofing and housing construction crews. They are paid very little and add to the profit margins. Lawn care and painting companies, carpeting companies all use illegal immigrants. So now what has happened is people want to use them but not to respect them. Trump is fear mongering and citing a few horrible examples to try to paint all illegals as criminals and drug smugglers and rapists when every crime statistic from the FBI shows a different profile. But it does not matter to the people who will vote for him. They hear what they want to hear.

    A lot of people are asking why Japan and S.Korea do not pay more for protection. In the case of Japan, perhaps US can withdraw from Okinawa now because the Okinawans are pretty upset with the US bases and crimes including rape that have happened there. But it will be foolish to withdraw from S.Korea. Because then that demented dictator from the North will invade. A lot of people want the America First, Nationalistic fervor to continue. They fear ISIS and other Jihadi terrorism but do not want to be honest about how it came to be.

    Obama referred to “Free Riders” in NATO and he was quite frustrated that the Libyan disaster panned out that way. He was reluctant to intervene first because it did not meet core US strategic goals but the Europeans egged him on. He was led to believe(a big mistake) that UK and France will lead the way after Gaddaffi was eliminated. It did not happen. Now the place is ISIS central and spreading. These are scary times.

    So I hope SL will NEVER again have terrorism and ethnic hatred or barriers and barricades and security check points and suicide bombers. Let the people living there and thriving come up with the best solution. Why can’t people who are essentially the same live and thrive without war and hate again? Does it not deserve at least 50 years of peace? I say good luck to all and everyone who are trying there.

    May Sri Lanka have real peace and compassion as per all the major faiths that exist there. May it never succumb to hateful war or terrorism local or foreign. I guess winning the war and winning the peace are equally tough or perhaps winning the peace is harder because of the obdurate mindsets of a lot of people. Root for success no matter if it is UNP Who Enn Pee, SLFP to work to address all issues soon.

    • 0
      0

      “”Yes now there is a distinct possibility that Donald Trump will capitalize on fear to win.””

      not really as the former interview he and Pence had on CNN wherein he agreed with her that `America is spinning` and he is out to correct the local problem from an economic point of view- 800 billion is a lot of money to spend guarding other peoples problems when they are not babies anymore- folk killing cops and vice versa. I like it- very much an Ayn Rand American philosophy.

      ” In fact it was President Obama who was annoyed with Cameron for not playing and paying their fair share to NATO obligations.”

      Obama the unknown social workers son talks gibberish when he alone said without American technology Libya aerial attack is impossible- then he pressed the button as commander.
      Obama is a class spin doc- `change` & `hope` how are the zero contract workers faring. He and Hillary were the first in the history of USA to interfere the judiciary.
      Cameron on the other had is a distant relative of HM so he did not find it necessary to rebuke the outgoing con master. Sarkozy too comes from Hungarian royalty.CIA knew better and anyone but were cocky as usual. Like King George told Americas first ambassador – pity you do not have a king- `Mamer Sinhala Diaspora Pissek`??
      We all have respect for Cameron because he kept 2 promises which no politician left or right would have kept- Scotland Referendum; Brexit Referendum and then he resigned like a king.- the breed counts!
      See how Boris performed before Brexit insulting Obama who had no reply to the exponent of European classics and his first public statement in the US with Kerry patting him for 30 years thesaurus (he is not English) England has culture unlike the tea tax evaders. Both UK and US will win at the end- we need a degree of honesty not multinational throttle.
      Obama spoke like a warlord until Putin entered Syria. Will Obama/Kerry/Hillary still blame Ed Miliband for the no vote on Syria?? Ha ha. America is bogged with expats CIA taking the piss- they do not understand the culture of the world just new world yuppie culture- fools and horses.

      “It was President Obama who told Cameron off for being stingy and not spending 2% of their national income on defence as per commitments to NATO. Obama did not even hide his contempt.”

      He says many things for the public consumption but does exactly what his sponsors the multinationals ask him to do. The RAF has no planes and train in USA- Obama approved. while most drones to Afghanistan and Pakistan are directed from the midlands UK. Do you know that the first European defence shield by USA is docked in the south of Spain?
      Do you know who pays the UN for its upkeep and who has the biggest say-arm twisting. That is what Obama is doing- politicking with debating precision which has created more chaos than Bush era. How many vets are committing suicide in Obama era to Bush Era?? I have it from a vet and its about 3 A4’s.

      “A lot of people are asking why Japan and S. Korea do not pay more for protection.”
      You are crazy to think like that- remember nothing exist as wholes and parts in their natural context. All the robotics (Reynolds) drones etc. research is carried out in these 2 countries- they are intelligent hard workers.
      If America messes due to its foreign policy which is CIA then you cant expect others to pay. Americans in principal do not listen to anybody but love their cowboy style- trailer trash cowboy style- its the culture- I am peter I am the lord god. Too confident and not afraid of the world but awed by its own people. I prefer Canada which is very European and more taxes to yuppie USA.

      “that UK and France will lead the way after Gaddaffi was eliminated. It did not happen. Now the place is ISIS central and spreading. These are scary times. “
      you sound like ladies man Obama not to remember the woman Hillary and the death of Ambassador, then she resigns never to come back but is greedy with ambition and here we go like CBK for family. Trumps daughter is smarter than hers and they are friends.

      “So I hope SL will NEVER again have terrorism and ethnic hatred or barriers and barricades and security check points and suicide bombers.”

      Sadly its got into the genes and there is no way out of the mess- its like the case of the prodigal son 70 years. let it go back to the before 48 administration – peace and prosperity is assured once all wings are clipped. What is the meaning of freedom when MP’s past and present are like warlords at home and travel VVIP . During your time at Delhi did you know late Ambassador Gurubachan Singh the man who fought hard for justice of his people killed after Indira’s murder?
      We can’t let our sentiments spoil the island- it must go back because its no a man and woman divorce case where the nation can be separated or live together once again. if you go back the tamils are not going to gain it would be equal opportunity- and minimum a living wage for workers. Then see how FDI flows. I have just received from Amazon 5 books by LKY so must read this interesting man. He studied the faults of all leaders of newly independent nations and realised that all that happened was ` suddhata gahamu` so even today no infrastructure as in the days of the colony. Where is our BCC home gas line?? Necessities wont come because public display of Religion is curse. to have a common candidate lanka needed sobita Can you change that Never. the Brits were smart and still are because they have that humour and sensitivity which even other Europeans lack.

      “Let the people living there and thriving come up with the best solution. “
      To do anything in the present world one needs money. money wont come when there is hatred in the hearts. When the rulers become outsiders then all racist maggots beware.Dannegena giyot kataragama.

      “May Sri Lanka have real peace and compassion as per all the major faiths that exist there.”
      Like MR and Sirima doing the kappuralas devil dance won’t help- grease yakkas.
      There is no god on earth but USA thinks so like Lanka and that is the fault. America with 50% obese Learn `Mindfulness` which lanka monks hate.

Leave A Comment

Comments should not exceed 300 words. Embedding external links and writing in capital letters are discouraged. Commenting is automatically shut off on articles after 10 days and approval may take up to 24 hours. Please read our Comments Policy for further details. Your email address will not be published.