27 October, 2020

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Sri Lanka’s Retreat Into Language Of Conspiracy

By George Alagiah

George Alagiah

George Alagiah

The last time I came to Sri Lanka the journey from the international airport into the capital, Colombo, took more than three hours.

The taxi pulled out into a late monsoon downpour, its windscreen wipers feebly slapping at the sheet of water. With roadside culverts overflowing, traffic slowed to a crawl and pedestrians, their sarongs and saris hitched up, took shelter where they could.

How different it was this time. We were in the heart of the city centre well within an hour courtesy of the brand new Katunayake-Colombo Expressway.

It was all so quick, so efficient I even found myself longing for a little of that wonderful chaos that used to be an integral part of any trip to this part of the world. Now you could be anywhere or – more precisely – anywhere in booming East Asia.

Read more in the BBC

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Latest comments

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    When George comes on TV or other news this is what comes to my mind.
    “…Up to when I was six, we lived in Sri Lanka, then my father got a job for the government in Ghana. It was when legislative discrimination against the Tamils was beginning in Sri Lanka”.
    http://www.theguardian.com/lifeandstyle/2010/jul/17/george-alagiah-family-values

    • 0
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      George Alagiah admits himself with LTTE Diaspora terrorists , so no need to elaborate more, & says

      “..UK Prime Minister David Cameron says he will do it privately..” Why Cameron cannot do it in his own backyard ,for killing 1.2 million innocent civilians Iraq by UK/US forces ??
      Aren’t those killing Crimes against humanity ??
      How many British soldiers were court-martialed for those
      crimes ??
      Don’t throw stones from inside glass houses.

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        John ?

        A killer is a Killer A war criminal is a war criminal. Rajapukses are mass murderes and war criminals who should be punished. What Britain did in other countries has nothing whatsoever to do with these criminals committing war crimes against the Tamils in Srilanka.

        Your logic is disjointed and ill conceived.

        • 0
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          ‘Your logic is disjointed and ill conceived’.

          It is the hypocrisy he is pointing to, not who did what.

        • 0
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          Are you trying to impersonate me? Remember, I am the real Piranha.

        • 0
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          Then so are Bush and Blair

      • 0
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        John,

        It’s OK John, you cannot help it. We have many citizens like you who cannot understand that WE Sri Lankans couldn’t give ratsarse for what others do. Let us set our principles and work to keep them – NOT stand on them, as we are doing now. A very large number of us who grapple with everyday life on this island know there are issues to be addressed; except for those in denial who are working to an agenda that suits their ultimate objectives. Therin lies the problem.

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        Why don’t you spearhead a call for an independent investigation of the Iraq fiasco – I am sure you have the freedom to make that call.

        But, why should that prevent a call for an independent investigation of the Rajapakse regime’s alleged attrocities against the Tamils?

      • 0
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        “George Alagiah admits himself with LTTE Diaspora terrorists , so no need to elaborate more, & says “

        An outright lie; the article makes no such mention of him supporting the LTTE, to the contrary he calls them “terrorist”.

        He simply states he is joined the Tamil diaspora with the word diaspora simply meaning those Tamils who left Ceylon for overseas due to local conditions.

        The fact that you will twist what he said and inject your own racial bias by implying all diaspora are terrorists speaks volumes about you.

      • 0
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        Alagiah ?

        What kind of Last name is that ?

        He is a HYBRID.

        So, let him have his way.

        • 0
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          Aha! Alagiah is a beautiful Tamil name. One of the well-known Tamil people from Jaffna is Professor Alagiah Thurairajah (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/A._Thurairajah).

          Even, the so believed Sinhala name Alahakoon (charming king) is also Tamil.

          Silva, Perera etc, are the confused names! They are not hybrid, but either Parangi names or the result of conversion (for cheap benefits).

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            Ironic, though – almost all the Tamils who migrate immediately take on an anglicizes first name – Johns, Georges and countless Peters. If their affiliation to their ethnic roots are so strong, surly one must use names given by their parents in their wisdom?

            And when. oh when, will be stop hearing from the ‘lovable chaos that we loved so much – lost in this terrible progress’?

      • 0
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        Typical Sinhalease logic. No body listens Keep shouting. Sri Lanka has been labeled as a criminal nation with uncivilized behavior. I do not know how it will come out of this.

    • 0
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      Anpu, what comes to my mind is Chelvanayagam’s ‘A little now, more later’ speech.

      • 0
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        Provide evidence please.

      • 0
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        Sunil

        “what comes to my mind is Chelvanayagam’s ‘A little now, more later’ speech.”

        And what’s wrong with the speech?

    • 0
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      thanks Anpu for the Guardian link, it was a good write-up, and good to know that George is an ex Lankan, I always thought he had an Indian origin, on BBC he presents well.

  • 0
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    The language of conspiracy, blaming the west and the diaspora, LTTE Rump???, other traitors is a convenient way for the govt to cover its sins but prevents it from making any headway. Like an ostrich with the head in the sand we think that the rest of the world is blind and cannot see our nether regions. Our people may have been blinded locally by controlling the media, but not the world community.

    • 0
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      What veer you say. The Tamils have done it. Greate people. It is a pity Sri Lanka cannot use them to progress and to get civilized. Instead destroying itself by itself. A classic case of foolishnes.

  • 0
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    ‘ Have you seen the film’, the idiotic question posed by Miller to some Sri Lankans protesting the presense of Ch 4 in Sri Lanka. To him it was more important than the collective experiences of the people in front of him who had suffered from the LTTE terrorism over 30 long years. Today they enjoy the benefits of the absence of terrorism, and these are huge.
    Colombo is a changed city, more picturesque than it has ever been. The economy is far healthier than it had been and the riches do reach the peoples as far away as Jaffna. The industrious Jaffna man will find ready markets for his produce in the South reached more easily than in the past. The comments of Muttiah Muralitharan, the iconic Sri Lankan loved in every part of the country he visits, was the only dampner on the message that Cameron took to Sri Lanka. Whether Cameron has taken those comments to heart remains to be seen, but he left Sri Lanka with his influence on the country and it’s politicians diminished considerably. The LTTE rump orchestrating events in London are no doubt orgasmic.

    • 0
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      There is no absence of terrorism as the Sri Lankan authorities terrorise all who oppose Rajapaksa and especially Tamils for simply being Tamils.

      The only Tamils who get a free pass are the likes of Karuna and Douglas, both stooges/water carriers for Rajapaksa. The GOSL only wants Uncle Tom Tamils.

      • 0
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        The ONLY Tamils who are valued in Sri Lanka are the ones who want to remain Sri Lankan and work for the betterment of all, not the openly inimical fantasists.

        • 0
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          If not for Murali’s cricket, he would have been treated like any other Tamil!! Miller is not a fool not to realise this.

          Thugs did not spare estate Tamils, whenever there were ORGANISED pogroms against the Tamils, even though they never had any part in the Tamil politics. They were always referred as “Kallathonis” or “Sakillis” “dark skinned people” etc.
          Although they earn the foreign exchange for the country, their living conditions are primitive still and wages have not improved substantially.

    • 0
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      Why is it so important for you to know whether or not Cameron has taken Muralis comments to heart? Who the hell do you think is Cameron? His heart anyway must be full of his own ugly concience about his countrys wanton killing of innocent civilians in Iraq, Libya and Afghanistan which he so sanitisingly terms “colatteral damage.” It is mindsets like yours that allow the country to be subjugated by colonialist and imperialist bullies who cannot first look into their own backyards before poking their noses into someone elses affairs. Cameron sure left Sri Lanka in a hurry but it was to clinch an arms deal at the Dubai airshow for the supply of weapons of mass destruction to one of the most undemocratic and authoritarian regimes in the world. Enough said about his bogus campaign for human rights.

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        @zindabad, usually my Pakistani friends use to say Pakistan zindabad, now you deserve one for saying this – well said -.

        “It is mindsets like yours that allow the country to be subjugated by colonialist and imperialist bullies who cannot first look into their own backyards before poking their noses into someone elses affairs”.

  • 0
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    The long and short of it is Tamils LOST, DEFEATED.

    Stop trying to run away from this reality.

    Stateless people.

    • 0
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      It’s the petty minded scum like you who are losing face everyday to the rest of the world. The LTTE may have been defeated,but the Tamils have certainly not lost. They are probably much smarter and hardworking than you lot combined. If this country does not want them they are quite capable of finding states that would take them for their intellectual ability and capacity to work hard.

  • 0
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    Alagiah maintains the highest traditions of international journalism and the BBC is the better for it.Bnsen

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