24 October, 2021

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Tamil Diaspora: Rajapaksa Regime’s Nemesis

By Ameer Ali

Dr. Ameer Ali

An economy crumbling by the day, a pandemic mismanaged and refusing to release its shackles, a foreign policy creating more headaches than solutions, strategic domestic assets falling into foreign hands, a parliament in turmoil, and conspiracies and divisions shaking the very edifice of Rajapaksa Regime’s (RR) political foundation: all this has made Sri Lanka’s internal stability, external tranquility and economic recovery increasingly problematic, to say the least.

To be precise, President Gotabaya Rajapaksa’s (GR) grand vision of splendour and prosperity packaged with an aura of virtuosity, discipline and security; and his alternate route to economic development, are all in tatters. The country is virtually bankrupt with massive foreign debt and just enough foreign exchange to finance imports for three to four months. Debt default appears a strong possibility this year. Above all, pressure is mounting from outside to compound the difficulties faced by the regime. It is with this bleak picture in the background this discussion draws attention to a crucial human variable that is making it harder for the regime to survive without yielding to international pressures: Sri Lankan Tamil Diaspora (SLTD).

Neither the Sri Lankan diplomats nor governments they represented and representing attach any importance to SLTD, except to condemn wholesale its leaders as heroes of lost causes and dismissing their organizations as terror outfits. Such condemnation and negative portrayal obviously help to satisfy majoritarian sentiments at home and enhance the popularity and stature of local leaders in power, but it hides an important and unpalatable truth about the rising strength and influence of SLTD, whose activities behind the scenes and at international level are beginning to bite the ruling regime and make it harder for its leaders to survive without driving the country and its people further and further into abyss.

There is no accurate count of the numerical strength of SLTD, because of the methodological differences in census taking. However, it is estimated that in Canada alone its number has reached around 400,000. There are also sizeable concentrations of SL Tamils in UK, US, Australia, France, and Germany, and much less in the Netherlands, Nordic countries and New Zealand. All in all, one can safely put the total strength of SLTD at or little less than three quarters of a million. What matters is not their number but the positions they hold, activities they conduct, and influence they wield within the polities of their domiciled countries.

Broadly speaking, SLTD can be categorized into two groups: pre and post 1983 communities, and a vast majority of both halves were victims of Sinhala Buddhist ethno-nationalism, a constant variable that dominates Sri Lankan politics since independence. (Needless to say, that prominent members of the Rajapaksa dynasty are ardent advocates of this nationalism, and it was during the presidency of Mahinda Rajapaksa, with his brother Gotabaya as defence secretary, that some of the worst human rights violations amounting to war crimes were said to have been unleashed against the Tamils). However, of the two diaspora groups, bulk of the pre-1983 half were English educated intellectuals and professionals most of whom hailed from a middle-class background. They emigrated and sought refuge in English speaking countries largely because of their inability or unwillingness to work under the new language policy and swabasha education system introduced by SWRD Bandaranaike. Having settled in the West they were more interested in advancing their own professional careers and family life than getting involved in the affairs of the community they left behind at home. Also, their interest in Tamil language, Tamil culture and Tamil politics were at best peripheral. True, there were exceptions.

In contrast, the post-1983 contingent were of a radically different composition. A vast majority of them were direct victims of the 1983 pogrom and were products of swabasha education. Many of them, without knowledge of any foreign language were desperately looking to migrate anywhere outside Sri Lanka and their number swelled during the civil war and its immediate aftermath. They were part of a new generation of boat people running away from trouble spots in the Middle East, North Africa and South Asia, and were products of the so-called war against terrorism, led by the US and its allies. In this massive exodus, the Tamil component from Sri Lanka was carrying with them not only bitter memories of their wartime experience but also a feeling of vindictiveness.

One important difference between this new wave and its pre-1983 predecessor was that the new migrants took with them a deep love towards their mother tongue Tamil, Tamil culture, and a firm commitment towards working from abroad to improve the welfare of their own community stuck in Sri Lanka. Accordingly, wherever they settled they organized Tamil language classes for Tamil kids, published a plethora of Tamil journals and Tamil literary works, operated Tamil media channels of communication, opened Tamil language schools to teach grown-up children, mostly during weekends, and in countries like Canada, Australia and New Zealand they were also able to receive approval from respective government educational authorities to teach Tamil as a second language in high schools. In short, it will not be an exaggeration to claim that it is SLTD that made poet Bharathi’ dream of enabling the sweet voice of Tamil heard all over the world, a reality. It was also partly through diaspora’s economic assistance that thousands of Tamil families in the North and East were able to recoup at least part of what they lost during the war.     

What is more important to the present discussion is how quickly and successfully the relatively youthful post-1983 SLTD replaced its ageing pre-1983 generation in various professional fields as well as in economic and commercial pursuits. This success through hard work created a recognizable Tamil elite in several Western countries, whose integration and socialization with its counterparts in other communities turned out to be an invaluable political asset to work towards advancing the interests of Tamil community in Sri Lanka. Over a period of twenty to thirty years SLTD, like Jews before World War II, has grown into a force to be reckoned with. The Geneva UNHCR resolution of September 2020, US Congress’ attempt to recognize North and East of Sri Lanka as Tamil traditional homeland, EU’s moves to withdraw GSP Plus and such other developments in the West demonstrate the influence of SLTD internationally. To the Rajapaksa Regime, and for that matter to any future regime that entertains Sinhala-Buddhist ethno-nationalism as the primary denominator of national politics, this is an unwelcome development. The new generation of SLTD would continue to exert pressure upon these regimes by influencing world organizations to restore democracy and meet out justice to the oppressed in a country which they still love and yearn to return one day. Not surprisingly, SLTD has also won sympathy to their cause from a growing Sinhalese and Muslim diaspora.    

There is obviously a realization within the echelon of Sri Lankan ruling circles that steps should be taken to eliminate or reduce external pressures. The country’s bankrupt economy and rising discontent within the general public, more than anything else, demands this. Even diplomatically, the professional calibre of Sri Lanka’s representatives abroad is so amateurish, as was demonstrated in Geneva last year, the regime is desperately in search of a more direct approach. The hasty invitation by GR to members of TNA for talks is clear evidence of this desperation and realization.  Although that invitation was withdrawn no sooner than sent, and talks were postponed indefinitely, presumably because of opposition from GR’s supporters, at least secret channels need be open to start a dialogue with minorities. It appears that talks with TNA would be held sooner than later. History is full of surprising twists and turns, and nothing should be dismissed as an impossibility. In that same vein, will secret channels of communication, at least with sections of moderate SLTD, be open to widen the dialogue with the Tamils? What is obvious from these developments is that SLTD has become the nemesis of a crumbling Rajapaksa Regime. 

 Dr. Ameer Ali, School of Business & Governance, Murdoch University, Western Australia     

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Latest comments

  • 6
    24

    What a joke! The Rajapaksas and LTTE diaspora are buddies now.

    • 4
      1

      Champa

      “The Rajapaksas and LTTE diaspora are buddies now.”

      VP and Rajapaksa clan had had long and fruitful business and political relation not now but some 16 years ago.

      For a fee VP won two elections and a war for Mahinda.
      By the way VP also helped Premadasa restore Sri Lankan sovereignty (whatever that maybe) from IPKF when Sri Lankan armed forces were hiding behind their women folks and VP’s bum.

      Shavendra was guarding the presidential palace, then the most safest place in Sri Lanka.

  • 30
    3

    Gota began his tenure planting Bo saplings and erecting little cement Buddhas in the North to rekindle racist tension in the country in order to setup a far right authoritarian militarist regime. Unfortunately for him things have spiralled out of control due to the pandemic and the crumbling economy. Meanwhile his missteps and bad moves have enabled the diaspora Tiger to grow more determined and ferocious. It is now poised to pounce and bite his ass at any moment.

  • 22
    4

    ……Not surprisingly, SLTD has also won sympathy to their cause from a growing Sinhalese and Muslim Diaspora…….
    says Dr.Ameer Ali.
    Fine. If this is so Sinhala-Tamil-Muslim unity could be forged at least to the Pre-1956 levels.
    It should now be clear to even the Racist elements in the Country that the Racial divide is to divert attention to the crisis that is enveloping this nation state.

    • 6
      1

      After posting the above, I realized that, to go back to the pre 1956 set-up would be like putting the Tooth Paste back into the Tube!

    • 4
      2

      Dear Plato,
      .
      Yes, the signs are ominous, and I know that you’re mostly into higher education.
      .
      However, I feel that you ought to be looking at ways in which we can salvage what we can of rationality by educating as many as possible, in the broadest possible way.
      .
      I wonder if you missed the article by Dr Tara de Mel seeking to get people thinking about education for the future. English literacy to ensure border knowledge, and the discussion could be further broadened:
      .


      https://www.colombotelegraph.com/index.php/english-medium-education-misconceptions-inaccuracies/

      .
      With a plethora Opinion articles coming out, this has got buried.

      .
      Your observations, Plato?
      .
      We can comment until Sunday.
      .
      Tara was always stressing more than English: The Amity Schools to overcome racism.

    • 8
      0

      Plato

      “Fine. If this is so Sinhala-Tamil-Muslim unity could be forged at least to the Pre-1956 levels.”

      Do you really believe those who now enjoy, power, wealth, unlimited unearned income, impunity, status, …………………. easily give up everything? Even the slightest thought of losing everything will make them suffer from serious withdrawal symptoms.

      Withdrawal symptoms:
      Abnormal physical or psychological features that follow the abrupt discontinuation of a drug (please read power) that has the capability of producing physical dependence.

  • 12
    18

    Gotabhaya has released his buddy Duminda Silva along with 16 hardcore LTTE terrorists.
    This combination is not good.
    Duminda Silva has operated a secret murder ring some time ago and the Rajapaksas has cut a deal with the LTTE diaspora. And I heard that some hardcore criminals in Boossa have made an unusual request to observe Sil today. Who knows, after the Sil pavarana ceremony, there could be an arrangement for duplicates to take their places.
    What is Gotabhaya upto?
    I think Gotabhaya is planning to revive LTTE to instil fear in the Sinhalese people. He tried the same in 2019 with Muslim terrorists but failed as the Rajapaksas couldn’t provoke Sinhalese to attack Muslims in the aftermath of the Easter attack.
    We are in a danger zone. There will be a sudden escalation of crimes and minor terrorist activities and by the time the next election is due, there will be a reign of terror.
    The Rajapaksas are not only unpopular, they are now utterly hated. Gotabhaya will do anything and everything to stay in power. I feel that the Rajapaksas will make another attempt to destroy Buddhism. If the Tripitaka Bill is passed, it is the beginning of the end of Buddhism in Sri Lanka.
    What can we do? Let’s “wake up Rawana”.

    • 10
      0

      Champa
      He tried the same in 2019 with Muslim terrorists but failed as the Rajapaksas couldn’t provoke Sinhalese to attack Muslims in the aftermath of the Easter attack.
      —————
      If they wanted some nation wide riot against muslims, they would have had it if the attacks were against buddhist viharas, instead of tamil churches.

    • 9
      0

      Champa
      Gotabhaya has released his buddy Duminda Silva along with 16 hardcore LTTE terrorists
      ————–
      Rajapaksa family contrary to their image, have a history of letting top brass LTTE members run loose with full state protection and benefits. Remember karuna, pillayan and KP?

    • 13
      2

      Champa:

      Who were those “16 hardcore LTTE terrorists”? I couldn’t locate their names anywhere.

      Were those “16 hardcore LTTE terrorists” charged and found guilty by a court of law?

      Or were they 16 LTTE terror SUSPECTS long detained without charges??? If they were merely detainees who were held for a decade or possibly longer without charges, why was it so? Did they not have any evidence???

      Where is the evidence these 16 individuals were hardcore terrorists?

      Not contesting that LTTE committed acts of terror and was rightfully proscribed as a terrorist organization. But these 16 individuals and thousands like them should not be detained without charges and the opportunity to prove their innocence or accept guilt.

      • 2
        5

        Sugandh
        It is the Rajapaksas who said so in 2009. They said that they rehabilitated terrorists of lower ranks and jailed hardcore terrorists.

        • 4
          0

          Champa

          “They said that they rehabilitated terrorists of lower ranks and jailed hardcore terrorists.”

          1. How could anyone jail innocent people without being charged at the courts.

          2. Alright lets assume some of them had been rehabilitated, since they were not charged at the court of law what proof do you have to convince the public that Mahinda rehabilitated terrorists, they could be innocent people.

          3. Mahinda government said in 2009 it counted those surrendered to the security forces and recorded their details as and when they arrived at the refugee camps (Military Garrisons). It never published the lists of those who surrendered. The Mahinda government also they released all those innocent people. It never published the detailed list of those who were freed.

          Why are the state, Mahinda/Gota, armed forces and politician reluctant to publish the lists?

          It would be very difficult for you to understand the logic, and ethics of government claims as people like you think(?) only in terms of your Sinhala/Buddhist racist beliefs, unfortunately not seeking truth.

        • 6
          1

          Champa,
          So this is your scientific methodology for the barrage of narratives you present here on CT!

          Such recklessness from so many like you have been destructive for so long.

    • 3
      2

      Chimpa, Ravanan was a Saivaite who worshipped Shivan and is said to have lived in the Thretha yuga, whereas Buddha was born just 2500 years ago!

      • 1
        8

        Ari
        Nope. In the original Mahawansa written by our Sinhalese ancestors long before Mahanaman’s distorted Mahawansa, there had been a mention of King Rawana seeing all four Buddhas. I found this particular section mentioned in another book.. I am looking for a translation from the original book. A foreigner is selling a similar book at a price of 700,000 in Sri Lankan Rupees. But I don’t know whether it is the right one. I am waiting until the pandemic is over to get help from Sri Lankans living in that country to verify whether it is the book I am looking for.

        • 7
          2

          Champa,
          “get help from Sri Lankans living in that country to verify whether it is the book I am looking for.”
          No, it’s available in the Public Library. It’s called “Grimm’s Fairy Tales for Dimwits.”

      • 1
        6

        Ari
        Sakvithi Rawana or King Rawana never worshipped Shivan or anybody. What is Shivan? It is an organ, right? There was no Shiva lingam in Rawana’s time. Shiva Ligam worshipping even started after Lord Buddha’s Parinibbana.

        • 3
          1

          Champa,

          “What is Shivan? It is an organ, right?”
          How ignorant can you be? A Shiva lingam is Shiva’s organ. If you were male, you could set up a Champalingam worshipping religion.

          • 1
            1

            OC,
            Champa’s ignorance is so revealing from both his replies on this topic, hence chose not to respond letting him revel in his ignorance!

            • 3
              1

              Ari,
              It’s not ignorance. It’s arrogance. You know the attitude : “My religion is the best and I don’t need to know anything about others”

        • 4
          1

          Chimpi you idiot, when did buddha become Lord you fool? He was just another man like all of us. You are a very stupid ho.

        • 0
          0

          Why so long Rawana kept Sita? Someone keeping a lady for what purposes? To play atabola?

    • 9
      3

      Champa,
      I thought it is Mahinda Rajapaksa (Former Super President and Slave of current President) and Namal Rajapaksa (next Super President)ordered Gota to release few Tamil prisoners.
      How do you know 16 hardcore LTTE terrorists? Namal said they are just keeping over 30 years without any charges or Court cases.
      Do you know who are the real terrorists? Look at you in a mirror!

    • 8
      1

      Champa

      “Gotabhaya has released his buddy Duminda Silva along with 16 hardcore LTTE terrorists.”

      The court found him guilty and sentenced Duminda to prison whereas these innocent people have not been charged with any offence, nor found guilty nor sentenced to prison.

      Dumasses like you, deranged war criminals and the state racist functionaries detained them pending investigation without any charges being framed, some of them being detained for more than 15 years.

      Only in this Sinhala/Buddhist irrational hellhole people are being held in custody for as many as years by sadists and given presidential pardon even though they are innocent or not being proven guilty.

      What on earth are you talking about.
      Instead of the innocent people the state should throw Gota and you in the same cell.

  • 27
    3

    “….the Tamil component from Sri Lanka was carrying with them not only bitter memories of their wartime experience but also a feeling of vindictiveness.”

    It is not vindictiveness but a yearning to bring justice to the long oppressed Tamils in Sri Lanka through their host countries and the world bodies.

    Both groups of the Tamil diaspora have witnessed anti-Tamil riots and pogroms since 1956, 1958, 1977, 1983, and killing of innocent Tamils in large numbers during the 30 year war, and the wholesale massacre of Tamils at the end of the war.

    Tamil Lives Matter.

    • 6
      1

      Apart from 1956 – 2009, a long period of 53 years; the Tamil Diaspora would have created history in Sri Lanka, in the last 12 years if…? If their oppressors had turned a new leaf like Emperor Asoka. But the country never ever produced a single Patriot.

      Not one in the last century. Never will there be a single in the next. So no Tamil Saver will ever develop the trust to turn Investor. Host country support is not needed. The Diaspora can save themselves and the mother country. But this is not to be. The inevitable alone will happen.

    • 10
      2

      Why not call it what it is? A genocide against Tamils!
      None of these events happened randomly overnight.

    • 2
      7

      Thiru,
      Lives of Native Sinhalayo who were massacred by Tamil terrorists for three decades using suicide bombers, claymore bombs, AK47s, and chemical weapons ‘Do Not Matter’.
      —-
      “Tamil Lives Matter”

      • 4
        2

        Dear Eagle Eye:
        Who you try to fool?

        Which came first, the chicken or the egg?

  • 22
    2

    Apparently few who were detained without any charges for years were released today on presidential pardon. This is the first step towards the right direction. Hope they do not get arrested again under PTA.

  • 16
    1

    OMG. Now that SC let Shani free Gotha decided to pardon Duminda. Aura of virtuosity and Discipline promised by Rajapaksas.

  • 9
    32

    All Tamils can do is picke in Insignificant locations like Oslo, Geneva, Melbourne and Ottawa. Which have zero influence in world affairs. American’s run the world and there are only few Tamils in New York. In addition you need millions to lobby Congressman and senators. Tamils dont have that kind of money either. When buddha said the nature of reality is illusion he must have been thinking of Tamils and hack journalism of ameer Ali.

    • 9
      0

      Westham,
      When buddha said the nature of reality is illusion he must have been thinking of Tamils and hack journalism of ameer Ali.
      ————–
      You are right and wrong. You are right that the buddha thought about tamils as tamil existed during his time. Sinhala did not. But neither did Ameer ali.

    • 5
      2

      Westham,
      “Tamils dont have that kind of money either”
      Perhaps you don’t know that 75% of the country’s export income is produced by the minorities. Why do you think that is?

  • 26
    2

    Rajapakse regime’s nemesis is Rajapakses themselves.

    Tamil Diaspora might kindly give a helping hand …… now and then …….

    • 7
      3

      nf
      That is closer to reality.
      If the West seems to pay attention to the Tamil diaspora, it does so because it is to its benefit.
      The west has decided to have ago at the GR-MR rule. What it does is by no means at the bidding of the Tamil diaspora.
      If the Tamil diaspora is anybody’s nemesis, each faction of it (every one at another’s throat) is the nemesis of a Tamil political grouping here.

    • 7
      4

      nimal fernando

      “Tamil Diaspora might kindly give a helping hand …… now and then …….”

      Part of the LTTE supporting (another noisy minority) diaspora will definitely support the clan and the present state as they had done in the past through VP who helped Mahinda win two elections, a war and the eviction of invading Hindian Army the IPKF.

      Do you remember any other so called patriotic leaders who actually evicted any occupying foreign armed forces from this island in the past 500 years? It the psychopath VP who fought against the Tamils, LTTE, Sri Lankan armed forces and finally preserved the sovereignty (whatever that maybe) of this island.

      He (VP) is dead and gone.
      Who is going to restore the island’s eroding sovereignty (whatever that maybe)?

      If Commander HLD M motivates rest of the smart patriots to join a newly created New Liberation Army of Smart Patriots (NLASP), will you join him and fight for the country?

      Some of the Smart Patriots:

      Gunadasa Amarasekara
      Shenali D Waduge
      Channa Jayasumana
      Nalin De Silva
      Dayan
      Udaya
      Wimal Sangili Karuppan Weerawansa
      …..
      …..

    • 2
      5

      nimal fernando,
      Rajapakshes are the nemesis of Tamil terrorists who bragged that they cannot be defeated militarily.

  • 15
    3

    Thank you Dr. Ameer Ali. A good piece.
    You have marginally mentioned the Sinhalese Diaspora You need to refine this some more to find the importance of Colombo Telegraph which is run by a Sinhalese exile. I do not think we Tamils have anything to match CT in keeping the world informed of what is going on in Sri Lanka.
    Indeed there is a lot in Tamil and may be in Sinhalese too. But in keeping the English-reading international community informed, Uvindu Kurukulasuriya, a member of the Sinhalese Diaspora, is unmatched.
    Without CT, I think even your very important writings will have no easy outlet.

    • 8
      2

      JM,

      I agree. Uvindu’s contributions to journalism in exile, and the many personal sacrifices needed to keep CT going while trying to make a living in the West, should be acknowledged and commended.

      I think Dr. Ali is somewhat exaggerating Tamil Diaspora’s power, but he is right about the larger point.

      • 4
        1

        “Uvindu’s contributions to journalism in exile, and the many personal sacrifices needed to keep CT going while trying to make a living in the West, should be acknowledged and commended.”

        Couldn’t agree more!

      • 4
        0

        Agnos

        “I think Dr. Ali is somewhat exaggerating Tamil Diaspora’s power, but he is right about the larger point.”

        I am told nobody understands what the Tamil Diaspora is up to, or stands for, …………. as they it is being sucked in to too many distractions, for example:

        The dog in the Malayalam film ‘Varane Avashyamundu’ was addressed as “Prabahara”, by the lead actor.
        Thamil Nadu was urged to rage, a minority section of the noisy diaspora also raged.

        The Tamil actor Vijay Sethupathy agreed to play the role of cricketer Muralitharan in his biopic film. You know the s**t hit the fan before the film was made or released.
        Thamil Nadu was urged to rage, a minority section of the noisy diaspora also raged.

        I am also told whenever Seeman say some stupid things (not that he ever uttered anything useful or intelligent) his supporters urged Thamil Nadu to rage, or a minority section of the noisy diaspora also urged to rage.

        Recently Amazon production, Family Man 2 was released it is supposed to show LTTE activities in Sri Lanka and outside. LTTE supporters in Thamil Nadu didn’t agree with the story line.
        Thamil Nadu was urged to rage, a minority section of the noisy diaspora also raged.

  • 6
    2

    Dr.Ameer Ali’
    Good presentation.! Quite realistic.

  • 5
    1

    Nemesis is vindictive kickback. Author suggests dialogue with minorities. Instead, if GR takes minority diaspora offer to invest in Port City, he can kill two birds with the same arrow and be a winner. Tragedy is that the rest of his deceived kingdom want to do the land sale to China and fill their pockets and grab some high rise too. Associated business crowd too will grab. We cannot spend what we do not have and more debt will be the result. No revelation that educated young diaspora employed abroad earns massive cash unlike petrol pumpers, hospital bathroom cleaners and road sweepers. Jobless crave debts and commissions.

  • 8
    3

    “Even diplomatically, the professional calibre of Sri Lanka’s representatives abroad is so amateurish, as was demonstrated in Geneva last year”
    Dr Ameer Ali is on the dot.
    It is embarrassing to say the least, to watch the antics of our professional and amateur diplomutts. Some of these worthies go to the US, a nation of immigrants, and claim that the Tamils are invaders because they don’t have a 2500 history here. These idiots, such as the pumped-up “professor” Jayasumana, are doing the Tamil diaspora’s work for them. Did this stupid government not know that the UNHRC is quite aware of C.A.Chandraprema’s background?
    Compare these clowns with the generally well educated diaspora. There is really no contest.

    • 4
      2

      OC
      Your assessment of diplomatic performance is correct.
      But does the US consider any of it or the work of the Tamil diaspora seriously?
      The US has an agenda, and it tries to implement it regardless of consequences– at times to its severe detriment.

      • 3
        1

        S.J,
        “The US has an agenda, and it tries to implement it regardless of consequences– at times to its severe detriment”
        Quite true.The US puts its interests foremost, cloaked with ostensible altruism. But our diplomats have turned shooting themselves in the foot into a fine art.

    • 4
      1

      old codger

      SJ types:
      “The US has an agenda, and it tries to implement it regardless of consequences”

      So is Hindia, China, UK, Russia, …. even Saudi, ……
      The point is SJ should educate Chinese Mandarins rather than justifying their greedy foreign policies with American ones.

      • 3
        0

        Native,
        States with intelligent leaders look after their own interest first. They don’t throw stones from glass houses, unless the stones are very big.

  • 5
    1

    “The Bar Association of Sri Lanka (BASL) has requested President Gotabaya Rajapaksa to make the public aware whether the due procedure was followed when granting pardon to Duminda Silva.”

    You mean people who were supposed to be paid off got paid off. Of course they did. What a stupid question.

  • 6
    2

    … …. SLTD has also won sympathy to their cause from a growing Sinhalese and Muslim diaspora.
    ????

  • 11
    3

    Since independence, Sinhalese had been intransigent in accommodating Tamil demands for equality and justice, to be allowed to share land and power in an equitable manner. This true picture was muddled for the past 30 years by the intransigence of Prabaharan for a fair settlement. While Prabaharan played the game all wrong, Sinhalese cleverly used this situation to pretend that they are willing but unable to reach a settlement. When Prabaharan was alive Tamils did not have ghost of a chance to portray them as being victims of State terror and racism. With elimination of Prabaharan, it is evident that it is the Sinhalese who are intransigent and the stumbling block for peace and reconciliation based on justice and dignity. Now Sinhalese are playing it all wrong, bringing China antagonizing USA, Europe and India and refusing to cooperate to deliver justice to Tamils. At present Tamils have reached a moral high ground as the oppressed community fighting for a fair solution based on autonomy, and if they play their cards correctly, they will win.

    • 8
      2

      It is foolish to think that Tamil diaspora is that powerful to influence the perception of their host nation towards Tamil aspiration. Tamil diaspora does not have the money, votes or weapons to swing the policy of those countries to accommodate Tamil ambition. However these Tamils have the greatest asset that is required for victory, namely justice, and it is history that justice will always win at the end. Sinhala government is rattled, by onslaught being made by these nations, and want to take them for a ride, by pretending to reach out for settlement with Tamils. It will be the same story as in the past, for these negotiations to be dragged on till the situation eases and then abruptly terminated.Tamils in Sri Lanka should never support for installing government friendly to USA, Europe and India, which if happens, Tamil cause will be dropped like a brick. Keep present mad hatters in power who will destroy the country economically and bring defeat militarily.

      • 3
        4

        “Tamil diaspora does not have the money, votes or weapons to swing the policy of those countries to accommodate Tamil ambition.”
        More importantly, has it a clue?

        • 3
          1

          Sivasegaram, just because you do not have a clue, it does not mean that others are the same. Secondly do not pass judgement going by the antics of TGTE, GTF and other vociferous organisations who are just self promoters. There are prominent members of Tamil community who are lobbying their host countries silently. There are several Tamils living abroad who have demonstrated leadership and organisational skills who could be of immense use to Tamil community in Sri Lanka with their expertise. There is no progress for Tamils in Sri Lanka because of good for nothing Tamils like you who stayed behind.

    • 5
      1

      Dr. GS,

      Though your first point about VP is right, we shouldn’t continue to make the mistake of seeing it as winning by one ethnic group and losing by the other. In fact, what the Tamil people need is a mechanism to have human security so that they can live and thrive within SL alongside other communities. It involves physical and economic security, free from harassment, torture, etc., linguistic and cultural rights, human dignity, etc. Though most of us think that it has to be in the form of a solution that comes close to federalism, in the face of strident opposition from the Sinhalese polity, Tamils should reassure at least the enlightened segments of the Sinhalese polity, that they not out to denigrate the Sinhalese, particularly Buddhists, that it is not a selfish quest. So Tamils should change their perspectives and start using the right language–winning human rights and dignity for all, not winning vs. losing.
      There should be more people writing about their personal experiences, exposing the injustices of the state machinery, like what Dr. Hoole is doing. People like Basil Fernando have been exposing similar things in the South. Framing the issues in the right way can help remove some of the toxicity that permeates ethnic relations in SL.

      • 3
        0

        Dear Agnos:

        That’s on the money! We must ask ourselves why that has not been the approach in SL.

        At this juncture, i.e. under the trials inflicted by the incumbent government, I hope we see more of the secular, unifying approach. Human security. Human rights. Human well-being.

      • 3
        1

        Agnos, I have lived among Sinhalese in Colombo for 44 years since birth, and I am in contact with influential Sinhalese in UK at present. I will tell you that other than a handful of Sinhalese, the rest are not in favour of granting the rights to Tamils of sharing land and power. It is through international pressure that they are talking about devolution, but in reality pretending to act. If you do not want a win-lose situation, then it has to be win-win result, and that can only be achieved by genuine sharing of land and power between Sinhalese and Tamils. Look at other countries like East Timor, Bosnia and South Sudan where dignity and safety for all were achieved by foreign interference. People complaining about injustices will never move the thinking of Sinhalese, who say that these problems are faced by all, and not just Tamils only. Wheel of truth and justice has started to turn, and we have to hope that it will be successful to deliver them to Tamils.

    • 1
      5

      Dr. Gnana Sankaralingam
      Why should Sinhalayo who sacrificed their lives and shed their blood to protect their country from Dravida and European invaders share land and power with the descendants of Dravidians brought to Sinhale by colonial rulers and helped them to exploit the Land of Sinhalayo and Vedda Eththo.
      —–
      “Since independence, Sinhalese had been intransigent in accommodating Tamil demands for equality and justice, to be allowed to share land and power in an equitable manner.”

      • 4
        1

        Ee, just looking at the manner how irresponsible Gota performs his office as the president of 21.5 million a in our motherland., even our elders would agree that war crimes should be inevitable under their lead. World should realise it today. SB racism should nt be underestimated.it is for sure beyond the levels what u see in Israel yet today. 😎😎😎😎😎😎

  • 6
    2

    DEATH NOTICE-
    MR.JUSTICE.
    BORN -FEBRUARY 4TH 1948
    DEATH-23RD JUNE 2021.
    With heavy heart we announce the death of MR.JUSTICE on 23rd June at the welikada prison.he is the brother of human rights,social justice,rule of the law,high court and supreme court of srilanaka.his last rights will take place with 21 salutes by all three forces at HIRU BURIAL GROUNDS.PRISIDENT GOTHAPAYA AND JUSTICE MINISTER ALI SABRI WILL ATTEND THE FUNCTION TO PAY THE LAST RESPECT TOGETHER WITH FIELD MARSHALL DUMINDA SILAVA IN ATTENDANCE.

    • 3
      3

      paragon, Just as much as there are deaths, there are also new births. Uncle nephew combo released LTTE suspects long imprisoned. GR speech showed glimpses of a strategy to survive which required renewed thinking. Though it was labored and I fell asleep in the midst, nevertheless the idea was to inform before a new finance minister took more of the country. Now that LTTE is appeased to an extent, GR if he invites diaspora investment in port city, there is no question that our debt will be paid and diaspora will not return but feel they too have a home somewhere to call their own. If only GR is inspired even through hindrances.

      • 3
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        Dear davidthegood,
        .
        I feel that your admirable optimism is misplaced! But being charitable is better than being nasty.
        .
        BTW, you’re not the only guy who fell asleep!

        • 2
          2

          Sinhala_Man, I believe that ultimate peace and wholeness is through unity and agreement, and not through division and war and the selling of weapons that are nuclear, chemical, biological dna mixing and creating future mutating demonic out of control. If diaspora terrorizes, it is different, but if they live peacefully and invest, give them a chance to feel at home and live here. For sure, youth will not return from their lucrative jobs. Peace increases when a governing king rules in righteousness and justice. Even God divided the nations with languages at the tower of babel when the intent was evil unity, but also will not allow his city of Jerusalem to which he will return, to be divided as part palestinian state for moslems. We may not be alive but the final battle of Armageddon is about preserving whole the city of Jerusalem for the king’s kingdom.

  • 4
    1

    Common sense evades the rulers.
    Powerdom, the alternate reality descended upon them.
    The magic wand for riches
    clouds the Unity.
    Powerdom mistaken for  International Control.
    Alas!

  • 12
    1

    Ameer ali is under the misguided impression that the SLTD alone are some major force on the world stage dictating affairs in sri lanka!
    They do have some influence but it is chinas growing presence in the island that is making india and the west mobilize against them.

  • 9
    3

    1 It is not SLTD – Sri Lankan Tamil Diaspora, but ETD – Eelam Tamil Diaspora. Even some overseas Sinhalese are ashamed to call themselves as Sri Lankans. The Eelam Tamils are a people and a nation in their own Homeland, Tamil Eelam.

    2 The Sri Lankan government has granted presidential pardons to 94 political prisoners convicted under the draconian Prevention of Terrorism Act (PTA), including 16 alleged “former members of the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE)”. Even a convicted criminal has been pardoned by the war criminal president.

    3 EU to suspend favourable trading preferences with Sri Lanka under the GSP+ agreement.

    4 US 413 Resolution has left an option for SL and have exposed the sinister design of delaying deceptive tactics on the UNHRC resolutions.

    5 The pardon, the EU stand on GSP + and US resolution is mainly due to the strong lobbying by selected ETD and Tamil politicians, who will continue to agitate and demonstrate until justice, accountability and a peaceful permanent political solution is attained for the Tamil Homeland.

    6 These again highlights and demonstrates that a Tamil united, collective approach to the international community, is the only solution, to pressure a rogue state Sri Lanka, to conform to international norms and standards and devolve a political solution to the Tamil Homeland.

    7 Two separate nations in the island for peace, stability, for strong economy and prosperity, to move forward.

    • 3
      8

      Manicka Vasagar
      What a rubbish comment.
      No. 5 in your comment is utterly wrong.
      Soon after President Sirisena appointed MR as the PM in October 2018, Namal Rajapaksa wanted to release hardcore LTTE terrorists. As there was a huge objection from people, they did not proceed. Rajapaksa traitors are behind LTTE diaspora’s war crimes allegations against our military. That is why they didn’t make any attempt to counter war crimes allegations against the military. Today, the Rajapaksas are the most unpopular and the most hated family in the world. This is only one. We will never forgive them for what they did against Sinhalese Buddhists for the past 19 months.

    • 1
      7

      Manicka Vasagar
      “Even some overseas Sinhalese are ashamed to call themselves as Sri Lankans.”
      —-
      Rubbish!
      Sinhalayo are very proud to call themselves Sri Lankans who defeated Tamil terrorists considered as the deadliest terrorists in the world and bragged that they cannot be defeated militarily. Sri Lanka is the first country to eliminate a terrorist campaign completely. So, why should Sinhalayo feel ashamed to call themselves as Sri Lankans.
      Tamils should be ashamed to call themselves as Tamils because the whole world knows them as deadly terrorists.

  • 4
    2

    yes yes Tamil diaspora grew powerful enough, almost parallel to Jews, to lobby the Western governments and imperialist powers to change their attitude toward Sri Lanka….lol!
    At least, this isn’t a write up castigating Tamil diaspora as usual.

  • 6
    3

    It is said there is something good even in the midst of misery. The Tamil Diaspora (post 83 periods) are doing extremely well in the countries they have settled. Whether it is education, entrepreneurship, jobs etc. they are way ahead compared to other recent immigrants. People who landed with only a $20 bill in their pockets have become successful businessmen. It is the new generation that is outperforming others in the field of education. Thousands are graduating from several universities annually.
    A country like Canada with its liberal democracy offers equal opportunity and a level playing field for all its citizens. The minority communities in Canada are not treated as second class citizens. The law is applied equally to everyone and justice is dispensed with regardless of your ethnicity, colour or status.
    The law will govern the actions of both government and private persons and their relationship with each other. What more you cannot buy justice. The courts will apply the law independently of political or outside influence.
    In fact, there are Ministers in charge of the promotion of Multi-culturism, diversity and inclusiveness.
    In fact, the government considers diversity as a great strength and not a liability.
    Politicians never fail to pay tribute to the contribution of the Tamils in enriching Canada’s social, cultural, economic and political fabric.

    1/2

  • 5
    3

    It baffles me how GR who lived and worked in the US for two decades did not learn the fundamental democratic values and the rule of law embedded in the constitution that form the cornerstone of America.
    The rights outlined in the bill of rights are basic rights that are not given by the government, but rather natural rights that humans possess.
    Of course, there is sporadic discrimination against blacks, but it is not systematic. It is not sanctioned by law like in Sri Lanka.

    The American Declaration of Independence proclaims that “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness. That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government,” Over to GR! 2/2

    • 7
      0

      Thanga

      “It baffles me how GR who lived and worked in the US for two decades did not learn the fundamental democratic values and the rule of law embedded in the constitution that form the cornerstone of America.”

      America’s best friends and trustworthy allies were the dictators of the developing countries. No wonder USA treats Gota with love, affection, ……………… like it treated VP from 1987 to 2009.

      USA knew they were bastards but considered them being its own bastards.

  • 4
    2

    If Eelam Tamil diaspora is remotely bothered about justice then they should also hold the Western powers they live in for their complicity in the genocide committed against Tamils, for it is they who shifted the power balance in favour of the Sri Lankan state.
    It is these powers who sit on any justice for Tamils. The UN resolution tabled by the core group does not even name the victims as Tamils anywhere…and here we have people claiming how powerful the diaspora lobbyists are.

  • 2
    1

    UN resolutions deal with nations with ever changing standards of justice. Not all religions teach that humans are created with a life supernaturally breathed into what is called spirit of man which goes back to its source at death, but while alive it can reproduce after its kind. No human can be made in any other way in spite of artificial intelligence and singularity. Our personality is the soul with intellect and it’s enlightenment, emotions and a free will to choose good or evil as we please. Animals too reproduce after their kind. With dna mixing today producing hybrids or chimeras, the danger is that nobody is responsible for their reconciliation and restoration when they go off path. Man can be reconciled and restored to image because there is a creator, who will not reconcile and restore hybrids or any other which he has not created but evil man alone has created without providing for a due process of correction to the ultimate truth. That is why corrupt political government without the law for correction will eventually destroy itself

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