19 September, 2018

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‘Sri Lanka Goebbeled’- My Article That Never Got Published!

By Sharmini Serasinghe

Sharmini Serasinghe

Sharmini Serasinghe

The following piece was written by me in 2007. This was a time, when the media in Sri Lanka was terrorized to such an extent, that Journalists and Writers needed to be armed with cold courage, to function.

All those Editors I sent the following piece to, who never said “No” to any of my articles before and after, refused to publish it in their newspapers, and one warned, “No way Sharmini, this will get us both killed!”

Senior journalist Keith Noyahr, who was then the Associate Editor and Defence Correspondent of ‘The Nation on Sunday’ newspaper, was not yet abducted and beaten up to near pulp, for daring to be critical of the then government, and military high command.

My good friend and former colleague Lasantha Wickrematunge was still alive, and so were the others who went missing in ‘White Vans’ and never seen again.

Uvindu Kurukulasuriya had not yet fled the country for his life, so Colombo Telegraph was not yet born.

‘Lest we Forget’ that was how the media functioned in Sri Lanka, not too long ago!

Now that the dark clouds of fear and terror have been lifted, here is my piece ‘Sri Lanka Goebbeled’ that never was published, up until now……..

Sri Lanka Goebbeled

If you tell a lie big enough and keep repeating it, people will eventually come to believe it. The lie can be maintained only for such time as the State can shield the people from the political, economic and/or military consequences of the lie. It thus becomes vitally important for the State to use all of its powers to repress dissent, for the truth is the mortal enemy of the lie, and thus by extension, the truth is the greatest enemy of the State.” – Joseph Goebbels.

Does this statement made by the despicable Nazi of the Third Reich Goebbels almost seventy years ago ring a bell? Yes it does, because that’s precisely what is happening in Sri Lanka in this very moment in time. We have Goebbels reincarnated under our noses!

To avoid confusion between the dead German fellow and his living local counterpart, we shall call our fellow Gotabbels.

While there are many similarities between the two, our man is not cast in the exact same mould as his German version, who was the Minister for Public Enlightenment and Propaganda in Nazi Germany. In our humongous cabinet we seem to have forgotten this important portfolio, maybe at the next cabinet reshuffle it might be included with Gotabbels as its Minister.

Goebbels was one of German dictator Adolf Hitler’s closest associates and most devout followers, our Gotabbels is also the closest associate and most devout follower of his leader Mahabbels.

Goebbels earned a Ph.D, our one hasn’t. An early and avid supporter of war, Goebbels did everything in his power to prepare the German people for a large scale military conflict, just like our Gotabbels.

Goebbels intensified the propaganda machine by urging the Germans to accept the idea of total war, our one is having some trouble in this department, because our independent media has a mind of its own.

Goebbels had a sharp tongue which made him enemies within the Nazi Party, our man has one too, which has earned him enemies amongst the media- both public and private.

Goebbels knew the power of controlling what people thought, our fellow thinks he has that too, but hasn’t except for a few. With Goebbels, those that did not tow the line had to face the Gestapo- secret police, here we have ‘Merv the Menace’, his thugs with orange coloured hair and White Vans.

A tireless, tenacious agitator with the gift of paralysing opponents by a guileful combination of venom, slander and insinuation, Goebbels knew how to mobilize the fears of the masses, just like how our Gotabbels tries with our media fraternity.

Goebbels became editor of ‘Das Reich’, writing regular front-page “editorials” and lauding the successes of the German forces, very similar to a certain website we journalists are all familiar with, which has a lot of Gotabbels propaganda in addition to attacking certain journalists.

Goebbels personally supervised the deportation of Jews from Berlin and proposed that Jews along with Gypsies be regarded as “unconditionally exterminable”.

On 7th June 2007, here in Sri Lanka, several hundreds of North – East Tamils residing in lodges in Colombo, were forcibly evicted and packed off to where ever they came from, in what was termed as part of a “security related measure”. Fortunately the Supreme Court ruled against this despicable move, and two days later these ‘expelled’ citizens of Sri Lanka were returned to Colombo.

During the Second World War, it was easy for Goebbels to persuade the public that things were going well when the war was going Germany’s way. However, this became a lot more difficult after the Battle of Stalingrad. This applied to Gotabbels too until Muhamalai debacle round three on 23rd April 2008.

As Berlin was besieged by the Russians in April/May 1945, Goebbels blamed the defeat of Germany on the German people. If this unfortunately happens here absit omen, Gotabbels will lay the blame squarely on the media.

On the evening of May 1, 1945, with the Soviet troops just a few hundred yards away, Joseph Goebbels killed himself in the courtyard outside the Führerbunker. No, we do not wish this upon our Gotabbels!
Patriotism means to stand by the country. It does not mean to stand by the president or any other public official save exactly to the degree in which he himself stands by the country.
It is patriotic to support him insofar as he efficiently serves the country. It is unpatriotic not to oppose him to the exact extent that by inefficiency or otherwise he fails in his duty to stand by the country.” — President Theodore Roosevelt, 1908

*Sharmini Serasinghe was Director Communications of the former Secretariat for Coordinating the Peace Process (SCOPP) under Secretary Generals Dr. John Gooneratne and Jayantha Dhanapala. She counts over thirty years in journalism in both the print and electronic media.

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  • 47
    5

    A beautiful piece again Sharmini and please keep it coming!

    Gotabels and I will rename Marabels., are just 3rd grade O/L qualfied morons who will never should have got a descent job if not for their family business of politics and that is also in SLFP.

    Interstingly the German version of Goebbels had a PhD and academically we can compare him only to our own Dr. Jayatileka of the Bring back the dictator fame.

    Coming in to Gotabels., I recall once of the interviews he was to give to BBC just after the war victory where he went onto say that there was not a SINGLE casualty of civilians and his forces were so professional to handle with utmost care in following UN human rights guidelines.

    Coming to Marabels., this moron just gave an interview to Al Jazeera where he claims that there was a conspiracy and there was a plan for 2 years which was brewing to kick him out of the office.

    The funny thing is wiht a Gestapo like police state headed by his 7Eleven clerk brother the notirious Gotabels., those in the state intelligence had no idea of any kind of works like what he fantasize.

    • 9
      1

      Madam Sharmini Serasinghe,

      RE: ‘Sri Lanka Goebbeled’- My Article That Never Got Published!

      “All those Editors I sent the following piece to, who never said “No” to any of my articles before and after, refused to publish it in their newspapers, and one warned, “No way Sharmini, this will get us both killed!” “

      “My good friend and former colleague Lasantha Wickrematunge was still alive, and so were the others who went missing in ‘White Vans’ and never seen again.”

      The Question to ask Now is Why are the Criminals and their sponsors Still at Large?

      “If you tell a lie big enough and keep repeating it, people will eventually come to believe it. The lie can be maintained only for such time as the State can shield the people from the political, economic and/or military consequences of the lie. It thus becomes vitally important for the State to use all of its powers to repress dissent, for the truth is the mortal enemy of the lie, and thus by extension, the truth is the greatest enemy of the State.” – Joseph Goebbels.

      Amarasiri may add,

      In Sri Lanka, there are people with Common Sense, and those with less Common Sense called Modayas and Mootals. The Average IQ of those with Common Sense is 90 and those Modayas and Mootals is around 65. If you tell a lie big enough and keep repeating it, the Modayas and Mootals, will readily accept it and believe it, because of their low intelligence. However, it is harder to get the people with Common Sense to believe the lies, as they are intellectually more advanced and have good common sense.

      In order to control the people with Common Sense, the true information and truths must be suppressed. True information and truths are spread by the journalists and the news media. Therefore both the news media and the journalists must be controlled by threats and by thuggery including killing of the journalists. The false information we distribute, the people will eventually come to believe it.

      The lie can be maintained only for such time as the State can shield the people from the political, economic and/or military consequences of the lie. It thus becomes vitally important for the State to use all of its powers to repress dissent, for the truth is the mortal enemy of the lie, and thus by extension, the truth is the greatest enemy of the State.” – Joseph Goebbels. Followed by Mahinda Rajapaksa, Gotabaya Rajapaksa and the Medamulana Family Dictatorship of the Shills and Cronies

      May Lasantha Wickramatunga and the other Journalists who disappeared rest in peace.

    • 7
      2

      Madam Sharmini Serasinghe.

      Plato is supposed to have said around 400 BCE, that when people with Common sense step away, the Modayas, Mootals and Fools will step in. Goebbels knew to keep repeating the lies and eventually people will believe, because they have nothing to compare to.

      [Edited out]

    • 5
      0

      Madam Sharmini Serasinghe –

      “To avoid confusion between the dead German fellow and his living local counterpart, we shall call our fellow Gotabbels.”

      We are all very happy for you because they refused to publish your article. Anyway, you finally got a chance to publish, 8 years later, Thank you, and the Gotabel fellow is still at large. Sometimes, you need to postpone things, Otherwise you can be roasted, like what happened to Giardano Bruno, almost happened to Galileo who had to recant.

      “Goebbels was one of German dictator Adolf Hitler’s closest associates and most devout followers, our Gotabbels is also the closest associate and most devout follower of his leader Mahabbels.”

      Mahabbels Song Raja, Raja, Raja,

      Published on Nov 21, 2014

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2KRfjNLEYAU

    • 1
      0

      Madam Sharmini Serasinghe,

      After 19A, Gotabels is disqualified to contest elections, because Gotabel is a foreigner.

  • 9
    2

    Very interesting List of Comparisons, with our own Minister of Propaganda!

  • 7
    2

    Aah, serene Sharmini, evoking memories of those dangerous days when an edgy article would have old hacks betting on whether the correction applied would be a ‘proper thrashing’, a knee-capping, a ‘white-vanning’, a beating to within an inch of one’s life, or…., the gold prize, thy-kingdom-come.

    Now, with apologies to sweet Mary;

    Once upon a time there was an ogre
    Then we used to file copy or two
    Remember how we laughed away the hours
    Think of all the great things we would do

    Those were the days my friend
    We thought they’d never end
    We’d run and hide every night and day
    We couldn’t live the life we choose
    We’d write and fight and hope not to loose
    For we were young and sure to have our way.
    La la la la…

    As a postscript: well believe it or not, it was the ogre Gotabbels who, in the chilly pre-dawn hours of a recent January Friday morning, with a nod and a wink steered Big Brother to go peacefully, and live to fight another day. You couldn’t make it up!

  • 29
    2

    Seems like Srilanka has been always goebelled since Independence, a root cause for all your conflicts, Sometimes I take my valuable time to understand the pysche of sinhalese by reading lankaweb, wov, one can see some racists to the extent of narrating entire universe is against Srilanka, the only land of paradise according to them. These are the Goebbeles who ruined amicable life of everyone there and they continue to do even today.

    • 13
      27

      manisekaran

      Watch out for your Hindian hindu fanatics. They have more potential to unleash unlimited destruction than any others.

      The nasty saffron clad thugs are spreading their tentacles all over India.

      • 8
        10

        N.V.

        On a different note our saffron clad thugs, during MaRa’s rule, displayed their testicles in Alutgama/Beruwela!!

        • 5
          4

          mike

          Thanks

          Have you seen a flashing saffron clad thug in Dambulla?

          He was on youtube.

        • 3
          4

          It appears MaRa goons (paid servants) are at work! 16 thumbs down for N.V. and 6 for Mike! LoL.

      • 6
        0

        “”Watch out for your Hindian hindu fanatics.””

        Rather the

        Anathema to the new God in practice, the unaccountable NGO’s spreading conversion in Asia.

        You can not kill faith!

        • 6
          0

          How do you compare de facto to your grass root gibberish??

          Hindi

          मानक हिन्दी – Mānak Hindī

          Modern Standard Hindi is a standardised variety of the Hindustani language.

          It is one of the official languages in India (as Hindi, Urdu) and in Pakistan (as Urdu).

          India Population (LIVE) 1,280,143,512 ( birth every split second.)

          Population total all countries first language speakers: 366 000 000

          Including second language speakers: 487 000 000

        • 3
          3

          Saame gigurawa

          “You can not kill faith!”

          Of course you can’t as long as they believe in flat earth. However no harm in trying to put some sense into their head.

          • 6
            0

            “”However no harm in trying to put some sense into their head. “”

            Isn’t it this about your neighbor.
            Make the lie big, make it simple, keep saying it, and eventually they will believe it.–Adolf Hitler

            Chinese (普通话/普通話 Pǔtōnghuà, Putonghua)
            Standard Chinese (Mandarin)
            (First Lang.)874 000 000
            (SecondLang)1,052,000,000

            English –
            (First Lang.)341 000 000
            (SecondLang) 508 000 000

            has been widely dispersed around the world, it is official language in 83 countries/regions (ISO), spoken in 105 other countries (E).

            Curiosity: English language does not have official status in Australia, the United Kingdom, and the United States.

          • 0
            0

            Native Vedda

            “Of course you can’t as long as they believe in flat earth. However no harm in trying to put some sense into their head.”

            Yes.

            But need to keep trying. Eventually they will get it. They will see the curvature of the Earth, the Earth going round the sun etc., but it takes time, evolutionary time.

            Still 25% of the americans and 34% of the Europeans believe that the sun goes around the Earth, jut like Joshua, the church and the ancients did.

            1 In 4 Americans Thinks The Sun Goes Around The Earth, Survey Says

            http://www.npr.org/blogs/thetwo-way/2014/02/14/277058739/1-in-4-americans-think-the-sun-goes-around-the-earth-survey-says

            A quarter of Americans surveyed could not correctly answer that the Earth revolves around the sun and not the other way around, according to a report out Friday from the National Science Foundation.

            The survey of 2,200 people in the United States was conducted by the NSF in 2012 and released on Friday at an annual meeting of the American Association for the Advancement of Science meeting in Chicago.

            To the question “Does the Earth go around the Sun, or does the Sun go around the Earth,” 26 percent of those surveyed answered incorrectly.

            In the same survey, just 39 percent answered correctly (true) that “The universe began with a huge explosion” and only 48 percent said “Human beings, as we know them today, developed from earlier species of animals.”

            Just over half understood that antibiotics are not effective against viruses.

            As alarming as some of those deficits in science knowledge might appear, Americans fared better on several of the questions than similar, but older surveys of their Chinese and European counterparts.

            Only 66 percent of people in a 2005 European Union poll answered the basic astronomy question correctly. However, both China and the EU fared significantly better (66 percent and 70 percent, respectively) on the question about human evolution.

            In a survey compiled by the National Opinion Research Center from various sources, Americans seemed to generally support science research and expressed the greatest interest in new medical discoveries and local school issues related to science. They were least interested in space exploration, agricultural developments and international and foreign policy issues related to science.

  • 3
    3

    This comment was removed by a moderator because it didn’t abide by our Comment policy.For more detail see our Comment policy https://www.colombotelegraph.com/index.php/comments-policy-2/

    • 8
      1

      K.A Sumanasekera

      Is this your suicide note?

      Its only the 19A, 214 out of 225 voted for it.

      In any case Sinhala/Buddhist have won the day as you would have noticed that government couldn’t convince 11 MPs. Therefore this Amendment didn’t receive full support of the Southern inhabitants, cannot be part of the constitution.

  • 10
    2

    What Sharmini did not realise is that both MR and Goebbels were suffering from the syndrome of Sociopath. Please check the symptoms and compare. Then you will see more similarities.

  • 20
    3

    Thank God you were refused publication in 2007, as otherwise we would be commemorating your 8th Death Anniversary!

  • 18
    5

    It is most unfortunate that Mother Lanka was cursed with an offspring called Gotaballa.

  • 16
    2

    Well did the Poet John Donne write Do not ask for whom the Bells Toll it tolls for thee; Marabels,Gotabels,Basilabels,Chamalabels[?],Namalbels,Yoshitabels Etcbels.

    Sharmini,thank God your piece was not published then!

  • 11
    2

    Thank God, your publications were refused !!!!. ARE YOU AWARE OF WHAT HAPPEED TO Snr Journalist tissainayagam.

  • 10
    1

    Thank you Sharmini Serasinghe for a beautifully written amusing article and sadly for our country, all of it is true. It was a blessing in disguise when you did not get it published in 2007. The Rajapakse regime had more in common with the Nazis than Sharmini gives them credit for. E.g. Hitler manipulated his parliament to get the 2/3 majority to get his Enabling Act passed. Our cardboard heroes did it with ministerial bribes to get the Constitutional Amendments to control the judiciary and keep them in power and keep alive the Terrorism Act to keep legal their thuggery. They transformed nepotism into a fine art that made the Central Bank their own coffers and the State Airlines their private fleet. Heaven sent us that astrologer to convince Marabels to go to the polls as we do not know what destruction awaited us in the remaining two years that they could have stayed.

  • 2
    11

    “My good friend and former colleague Lasantha Wickrematunge was still alive…” Don’t let Sonali envy with jealousy……………..
    Next time Sharmini, you will come out with some more juicy stuff with Lasantha & we will be stumped how to revive Lasantha to get a confirmation.
    Just stop dropping names & assications out of your HAT.
    The only Goebbels we knew and continue to know is MANGALA. That is how he survives in politcs.

    Now MATILDA.. you should not bash this statement in the verbatim & in a litteral sense. It was just an expression to indicate wontantly no casualties were created. However, in any war casualties are inevitable which are caused inadvertently.
    It is common sense to understand that the war was conducted as MUCH as possible according to UN Guidelines.No body can follow strict guidelines in a war situation as there are no guidelines to anny anti-Govt enemy.
    Do not beat about the bush to rake up the unpleasantness among communities latching onto litteral meaning of a word or sentence.
    Do not be a war monger.
    Remain where you are and leave us to live in peace.

    • 7
      0

      thondamannar,

      Do you hold a grudge against this writer or are you suffering from sour grapes?

  • 2
    0

    When I first saw the title I thought she was going to write about Dayan Jayatieke’s recent rants.However this is a clever essay.I hope that Ms Serasinghe will yet do a comparative analyses of Dayan J’s work and that of Goebbels.The strategies of scapegoating and historical falsifications and out right misrepresentation will bear comparison to Jatatilleke’s work.

  • 0
    0

    It is a fitting that SS (yes SS were Hitler’s worst fanatics) ) quotes T Roosevelt for whose mistakes in promoting US Imperialism (subjugating Hawaii,Japan,Korea, Taiwan,Philippines etc the US paid with Pearl Harbour nearly 33 years on and the Korean war (1949-51).
    Wonder what she wrote about Velu P and the LTTE? “With love to Sir”?

  • 2
    1

    Yeah ….Yeah ….Sharmini, my dear
    We know Maitri is stealing your limelight
    and Ranil is taking the wind out of your sails
    Things are getting pretty dull
    Oh …..the good old days of Mahinda
    when monks with bottled up cojones
    were threatening to erupt
    to your heart’s desire.
    Where is Gnanassara and the tree worshippers
    when you need them?
    For now let’s dust off the old records –
    and play it again Sharmini.

  • 2
    0

    Don’t Ignore our armeuture Gobells – Dyan Jayatilleke. Because he repeatedly fails he gains more sympathy than support.

  • 2
    0

    There is a big difference between goeballs and gotaballs.Goeballs poisoned his eight children and then he shot his wife and then shot himself.In the case of gotaballs he will poison his sharks,give his wife a list of vegetarian foods to bring for him and go to welikada to beat his mate fonseka(gonaballs) who is boasting about how he endured it.

  • 7
    0

    If one recalls, journalist Sivaram Dharmaratnam (Taraki)was killed, also as predicted by himself on several occasions. Lasantha Wickrematunge also foretold his fate.

    That was how easy it was, to just bump off any unpleasant thorns on the side of the regime. I am sure that the editors of various media that refused to publish Sharmini then would have thought what a waste it would be, to see her off that soon.

    So she has survived to tell all now, noting also that many criminals who made hay during the tenure of the last regime are still very much at large…

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