22 September, 2020

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The Road Not Taken

By Dayan Jayatilleka –

Dr Dayan Jayatilleka

“…Sri Lankan foreign policy must be centred on a non-hostile relationship with India…Choice is the essential question; not only the choices open to us, but the choices likely to be taken by others…” Mervyn de Silva‘External Aspects of the Ethnic Issue’ (1985), Crisis Commentaries (2001: pp68-78)

In the aftermath of the victory over the LTTE the Sri Lankan state at its highest level did not subscribe to the absurd doctrine that there was no further need for a political settlement or solution because there was no longer a problem. On the contrary the May 21st 2009 joint communiqué with India stated that “…both sides also emphasized the urgent necessity of arriving at a lasting political settlement in Sri Lanka.” If one is tempted to conclude that this was due to Indian nudging or Sri Lankan gratitude for wartime Indian assistance and a gracious concern for India’s continuing domestic compulsions, such an interpretation would be shattered by the joint statement on May 23, 2009 with UN Secretary-General Ban Ki Moon. That went further than the communiqué with India and contained a categorical admission that the war and our victory over the LTTE had not eliminated the need for “addressing the aspirations and grievances of all the communities”:

The statement continued with: “…President Rajapaksa and the Secretary-General agreed that addressing the aspirations and grievances of all communities and working towards a lasting political solution was fundamental to ensuring long-term socio-economic development…President Rajapaksa expressed his firm resolve to proceed with the implementation of the 13th Amendment, as well as to begin a broader dialogue with all parties, including the Tamil parties in the new circumstances, to further enhance this process and to bring about lasting peace and development in Sri Lanka…” (May 23, 2009)

The joint statements of May 21st and 23rd 2009 between GoSL and India and the UN S-G respectively, traced the outlines of the post-war roadmap agreed upon between the President and the international community. The commitment contained in the text of May 21st to “proceed with implementation of the 13th amendment” was not contingent upon the statement that GoSL “…also intends to begin a broader dialogue with all parties, including Tamil parties…” but was seen as preceding the “broader dialogue”.

Even more conclusive and significant is the joint statement of May 23, 2009 with the UN Secretary-General. The President’s “firm resolve to proceed with the implement the 13thamendment” was followed by the statement of intent to begin a broader dialogue with all parties including the Tamil parties “in the new circumstances”. The former was not dependent or conditional upon the latter.

Clearly, in 2009 the implementation of the 13th amendment was not regarded by this country’s leadership as contingent upon or to be preceded by a Parliamentary Select Committee.

Thus the statement also reveals that the Sri Lankan leadership did not at that time, buy-in to the notion that socio-economic development alone can substitute for, still less solve, the problem of communitarian grievances and aspirations of diverse communities. Indeed it shows a lucid grasp that a political solution is nothing less than a prerequisite for socio-economic development. Finally it reveals that the political solution envisaged is the implementation of the 13th amendment and a further movement by means of an all-inclusive dialogue.

The Geneva 2009 resolution added nothing new. That commitment reached Geneva from Colombo. Colombo had absolutely no objection to the inclusion of that commitment in the Geneva 2009 resolution, because that resolution referred to and incorporated the text of the statements drafted in – and also by–Colombo itself. If not for the Colombo commitments of May 21st and 23rd, 2009, it could not have been incorporated in Geneva on May 26-27, 2009.

Had there been any insidious implications the Sri Lankan delegation was well equipped to interdict them, containing as it did, a strong legal arm which scrutinised every sentence of every draft. The legal team consisted of Attorney-General Mr Mohan Pieris, Shavi Fernando and Yasantha Kodagoda two Senior Deputy Solicitors-General, and Dr Rohan Perera, Senior Legal Officer of the Foreign Ministry.

Contrary to the claims of Sri Lankan officials who present our victory as the first such in the 21st century, Vladimir Putin won a major war against a terrorist militia in this century a few  years prior to May 2009. So too did the Angolan government. Putin is no NGO-backed cosmopolitan liberal and is in fact reviled by them. He is however, a very smart leader who combines hard power with autonomy reforms. He implemented regional autonomy of a far wider sort than the 13th amendment, in parallel to his military drive against the Chechen terrorist militia (a drive which included the aerial bombing of targets in Grozny) and has allowed that autonomous entity to become prosperous. Thus, while there are copious Western and INGO criticisms of President Putin on grounds of human rights and governance, there aren’t any war crimes/violations of international humanitarian law campaigns in the UN HRC in Geneva, not even on its sidelines by Channel 4 and INGOs, against Russia’s victory in Chechnya.

In the closing year of our war and in its aftermath I had expressly recommended a pragmatically progressive policy of autonomy. This is what I wrote at the time and was carried in the February 2009 issue of HIMAL under the caption ‘The Next Phase’, BEFORE the liberation of Mullaitivu (with the disclaimer that these were my personal views):

“…Two non-military yet strategic tasks thus face Sri Lanka in 2009. First, the political prevention of the sustenance or resurfacing of ethnic separatism and support for the Tigers through so-called peaceful political means. This requires stringent anti-separatist legislation along the lines of those that exist in India, Turkey and Spain. Second, a variety of elections – parliamentary, provincial and local authority – need to be held in the liberated areas. The aim here is to throw up a moderate democratic Tamil representation with which the Sri Lankan government can negotiate a final settlement of ethnic grievances, the outlines of which are already being chalked out by the All Party Representative Committee, the APRC.

…The real challenge of 2009, then, is politico-military. First, the liberation of Mullaitivu needs to be accomplished in such a decisive and comprehensive manner as to pre-empt, to the maximum degree possible, the survival of the LTTE as a guerrilla/terror force. Second, simultaneously there has to be a redrawing of the Sri Lankan social contract in a manner so enlightened and reformist that the Tamil people feel included as fully fledged citizens, enjoying equal rights and genuine provincial autonomy. 2009 must be the year of the full and final liberation and reunification of Sri Lankan territory; and upon that reunified territory, the beginning of the construction of a truly Sri Lankan identity, an authentically Sri Lankan nation.

…Sri Lanka can win the war and lose the peace by one of two errors. The first would be to permit the separatist project to continue to function, for separatist political agencies to function unchecked. We could thus peacefully jeopardise that which the armed forces have won on the battlefield. This could generate a seriously destabilising nationalist-populist backlash. The equal and opposite error would be a lack of generosity, flexibility, enlightenment and wisdom, due to which we fail to expeditiously remove the discrimination, frustration and alienation felt by the Tamil minority. That would cause the reactivation, one way or another, of the Tamil separatist struggle. Either outcome would betray the gains of military victory, and would continue to torment the people of Sri Lanka.” (‘The Next Phase’, Dr Dayan Jayatilleka, HIMAL, Feb 2009)

The Sri Lankan regime chose or was prevailed upon by hawks in the state apparatus and the governing coalition not to take the path clearly demarcated in the joint statements of May 21 and 23rd 2009. Instead it bought as much time as it could for those who wished to consolidate in the ground in the North while maintaining a political vacuum. Today time and space are fast running out. Sri Lanka lacks the material, economic-financial and diplomatic capacity for the attrition that would result not only from the unilateral redrawing of an inherited, uneven bilateral agreement but also the non-fulfilment of post-war international commitments far more freely entered into at the apogee of achievement of the Sri Lankan state.

As Sri Lanka’s most renowned analyst of world politics and foreign policy, Mervyn de Silva, whose 14th death anniversary fell last weekend, observed in 1985 at a Marga seminar on the ‘External Aspects of the Ethnic Issue’ (observations which proved prophetic two years later with the airdrop, the Accord, and the IPKF):

“…To amend Orwell, all countries are equal and sovereign but some more sovereign than others. While in principle all nation-states enjoy equal sovereignty, the effective exercise of such sovereignty is contingent on several factors, some permanent and unalterable. These include the size and population of a country, its economic resources, its industrial and military strength and most of all, its geographic location and therefore the geo-political environment…If this island were located next to Papua New Guinea, the Palk straits and Tamil Nadu’s fifty million people would not be a source of anxiety. So any sensible Sri Lankan foreign policy has to be centred on an axiomatic factor: the nearness of our huge and powerful neighbour. Does this mean that a small nation must necessarily be subservient to its big neighbour, that it cannot pursue a policy independent of its big neighbour, or even hostile to its neighbour? Not at all. It can. But it must recognize and be ready to face the consequences of such a hostile relationship…Sri Lankan foreign policy must be centred on a non-hostile relationship with India…As in other fields of policy-making, choice is the essential question; not only the choices open to us, but the choices likely to be taken by others…”

The Sinhala hawks believe that Sri Lanka can take on or ignore the Tamil Diaspora, the West, the UN, India, the Western media and the INGOs (not to mention  a billion Muslims and  2.3 billion Christians) and do so all at once. They think that India is an enemy. Some of them, like Maj-Gen (Retd) Lalin Fernando, disregarding my cautioning about the balance of power and Sri Lanka’s strategic vulnerability, think that we can take an Indian kinetic power-projection on and prevail: “DJ must know that if anyone decides to attempt to ‘come along’, it won’t be like the ‘last time’ (1987) either. Our troops are already in Jaffna to give a fitting and extremely warm welcome especially to anyone DJ has in mind…They are some of the most battle hardened, professional and skilled troops around. In 1987 there was only an ersatz division with little artillery and just wheeled armour in Jaffna with enthusiastic but severely limited air and sea defences.” (Lalin’s Column: ‘Holbrooke, Devolution and Wargames’, Asian Tribune, Vol 12, No 430)  Just how these silly Sinhala Sun Tzus who are willing to fight the Indians down to the last Sinhala peasant lad in uniform, plan to secure supplies (especially fuel and ammunition) for an island, which in a worst case R2P scenario can be easily cordoned off by the powerful neighbouring navy and subject to a no-fly zone by its air force, beats me.

I think that India is neither enemy nor friend, and may sometimes be a ‘frenemy’ (as the US and Pakistan say of each other in frustration) — but remains at all times, a REALITY. The Sinhala hawks think that a TNA-run Northern Provincial Council will be on a continuum of conspiracy with Tamil Nadu radicals, the separatist Tamil Diaspora ideologues, the US and India. I think, to the contrary, that a Tamil Nadu and Diaspora-backed Tamil nationalism and a restive Northern Provincial Council cannot be contained by the Sri Lankan state other than through co-management and politico-diplomatic quasi-partnership with Delhi.

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    Mr Jayatilaka,

    Your argument rings fine but,who are these “hawks” that are so powerful that even the President is afraid of crossing them? I dont believe you are talking here of the JHU and the NFF? Then who are they? Without naming some credible hawks, the entire story seems to fall flat.

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      siri,the hawks are mahinda and gota.They make use of their two mouthpieces modawansa and chimpanzika ranawaka for their own ends.

      mahinda has always been a sinhala supremacist as lee kuan yew pointed out when he said that over the years of his political career he had studied mahinda and his utterings and that was the conclusion he came to.Gota is a former army man and is paranoid about security and as all armed forces men do lives in a world of battle and war which is ingrained in his and fonseka’s blood.They cannot change to peacetime conditions even if they want to because that is the way they are built and trained and their whole life has been war and battle.

      These two if allowed to continue to run the country will allow the north to break off one day.That is what Dr.Dayan seems to be worried about and warning against,but he will be knocking his head on a brick wall because mahinda himself is the culprit here and not the two chumps and chimps he has as his mouthpieces.Advising mahinda to change course is akin to advising prabha to change course to federalism or hitler not to invade russia or stalin to not trust hitler.Headstrong leaders are impossible to deal with or advise and you have to either remove them from the wheel or watch them crash into a wall and get out of the passenger seat before they do so.

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      If you are really keen to know, read the Sunday (casino) newspaper nobody reads.
      Now go and wash youeself

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      How about Tamil hawks?

      Are they all dead?

      BTW who saved the war criminals in Geneva in 2009?

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    As Sri Lanka’s most renowned analyst of world politics and foreign policy, Mervyn de Silva………I don’t know about that but one thing is self evident, his son was a pale imitation of the father !!!

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      Fernando. these people believe they are the cat’s whiskers. First they support Corrupt individuals over the Honest and the decent believing they are given recognition and position in society. Thereafter once the Corrupt secure Power and Position and when they are kicked out, they continue to lament in this manner to shun responsibility for the chaos created. Bloody Humbugs the whole lot of them, believing they are the brains in the country.

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        who are then the brains of the country according to you ? You seem to be know all most of the time, but tell us why the opposition is dead silent today. As it is clear to everyone, any totalitarian regime to strenghten their powers in so called democracies, only the opposition are totally paralized… .. today lanka^s situation is reached all appalling levels. Whome to blame if not for the opposition… ?
        I dont defend DJ but facts that he brings in his articles, I consider them as facts..

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          If RW is a brain for the country, he could have done so much not allowing the buggers in rule to drive it to this levels. RW respects all laws, but he is very slow… I really dont know any other candidate that could have years long political maturity either.

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          SB , you are spot on , Duplicity syndrome is not something new in the Sri Lankan political arena. The epidemic has devoured the country’s body-politics for decades.DJ is only a by product ! DJ is an opportunist and he has proved it quite number of times in recent history . there is a stark difference between DJ and other vultures though , unlike other stooges DJ won’t hang around till the last minute , being a very smart man , he knows when to call it a day . I find most of his analysis and arguments are really worth of looking in to ,in fact most of his facts & arguments are real eye openers and should be taken seriously by the concerned parties.
          Talking of RW , he is the number one reason for this terrible mess which we all have to face , it has been said before , there were and there will always be group of people to support any dictator in the world , regrettably this is true for RW as well.

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            Nice to read yours. Atleast few seem to be normal on this forum.

            Just hang on the sides cant bring us nowhere. RW is doing his job being lethargish and dead silent, leaving looters to continue with their job. For what people sent them to parliament if not for respresent them as time – is become far from comprehensible to me and almost children in this land – the country^s embarracement takes any silly decision saying something palatable to the brainwashed nation. Their targets are guilliable masses that would NOT react even if their lovely ones would have been murdered on broad day light by the eminences grises placed by uneducated political supporters of MR. See how ridiculous to see the murderer of that UK british murder let challenging the authorities today though benumb nation is aware of the truth of his direct involvement in that killing. And against, Duminda Silva is a well evident brutal multimurderer is promoted by president himself, if Internationl cought could through R2P reacted, President as contract killer would surely be convicted long back now. This is the current painful situation in the country with paralised opposition led by SUCH A COWARD.

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            U know Srilal, many in the parliament have no guts to come forward and react as it was the case in the past. In lanken parliament, as hanzard would reveal, we had great politicians, who are perhaps far better and genuine than in western parliamentarians. But today, name me one single person in the country – who you think is genuine when it goes with politics of the island

            As one of former CJ pointed out, it is not difficult work to go for rigorous law enforcement if the rulers really want.

            Rajitha S has guts to say that the regime is scared to loose the votes of the people if they would go against any segment groups come up against own folks (muslims).

            So, here alone it is glass clear, the COUNTRY^s embarracement -MR is not at all the suitable leader to run this country.

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              Dear Samare ,

              Sorry i couldn’t visit this page lately, good to hear from high spirited people like you , look forward to engage in a healthy discussion in the future.

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    Isn’t Rajiv Ammendment more appropriate term for this 13 A?.

    Didn’t the best brain Right Wing Ranil’s party ever had explianed to the whole box and dice of this Western Diplomaic Corp who are very keen to bring up our stock of 75 percent of the poor majority inhabitant population to first world standards that the best way forward is all political partys’ cooperation for a new home grown solution?.

    Isn’t it an absolute must to take the 21st century geo political and social situation in the country to solve any social or racial problems?.

    Are the aspirations of the great majority of the inhabitant population secondary to what the Diaspora PM, his Western allies , India and its new ally Sambandan want?.

    Why is the leader of the Opposition Right Wing Ranil hiding behind ky his pie in the sky Westminister Models, when his heavy hitters like Kiriella and Attanayaka openly say that Police and Land powers must be given to Sambandan.

    Why don’t they front up to the PSC and put forward these proposals t and work out a compromise , which ensures the inhabitants who are living in Srilanka and who don’t have the money or the connections to get overseas visas,live in peace and harmony as equals?.

    Isn’t this the best path that these emminent political scientists and experts should promote?.

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      Dear Sumanasekara,

      Basically there were two communities were at war with each other. International community took cognizance of this. Srilanka as a country too admitted this position. There was intervention by India. India mediated between the two communities that were fighting with each other. Both communities stood at the extremes.

      India, as well as the international community thought that the mid way is 13th Amendment. Srilanka too accepted this since 1987. The present regime, which had the backing of the majority of the voters went a step ahead and said that it could be 13+.

      This is history – it can’t be changed. Now, going back and talking about 75% of the population etc is all non-sense.

      You should have talked about the ‘aspirations’ of 75% when the war was raging. Had you rejected 13 at that time, the island would have become two.

      DJ points out that now also it would become two, if you think that you can fool everyone, including India.

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      K.A Sumanasekera

      “Why is the leader of the Opposition Right Wing Ranil hiding behind ky his pie in the sky Westminister Models,”

      Since you hate democracy, would you like to crown the head of clan as the emperor of Sinhala/Buddhist kingdom of Sinhala Eelam?

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    [ Then who are they?]
    I think he is referring to MR’s inner most circle. It just could be a man that does’nt want to be president but wants to be as or more powerful than the president. Once again authority without accountability. Whas’nt that how the was was won.
    Now pay the piper. LOL

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    Dayan on the path to redemption. If sincere he can redeem his many years of boot licking the regime and profiting at the cost of the tax payers. True liberation can only come to DJ the day he has finally given up hope on another plump dpl position and has the guts to call his former master what he truly is – a racist dictator. good luck.

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    Dayan,

    Just wondering, if the government does away with the 13th amendment (which it will come what may!) and then gives you a plum posting as SL ambassador to India to smoothen the ruffled fathers, will you accept?

    Will you then see all the ‘evil’ that the government sees in the 13th amendment? Will your eyes see the ‘light’???

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    Dyan,

    Puttin was right. For Sri-Lanka too.. It’s minorities need Sri-Lanka, Not other way around. Besides please explain what is undemocratic about proposed amendments to the 13th? Ultimately Sri-Lankan people will decide what’s best for Sri-Lanka. Not the west, not the India or Tamil Nadu, or the Muslim world. Once Sri-Lankan people do, respect that. It will happen whiter outsiders like it or not.

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      Democracy must be something more than two wolves and a sheep voting on what to have for dinner. — James Bovard

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        Again..Big boys say this and that.. Please explain what is undemocratic about proposed amendments to the 13th?

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          One More.. Dr RN comments bellow or elsewhere cannot be replied. But Sri-Lankan People as whole will reply when the time is right..

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          what are the propose amendments in short ?

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          al-ambrilla,the amndment not to allow a merger is democratic,but the other one to allow any law to pass as long as the majority of the councils agree,is not democratic.Are you wanting to stuff down the throat of the northern and eastern councils what they do not want?Do you call that democratic,you idiot.Are you educated?

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        No it should be 3 wolves and a lamb voting on dinner.

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      How will the Sri Lankan people decide that? Would their sentiments be ascertained on the basis of nation elections at which they either cast their votes on the basis of their response to bread and butter issues and/ or emotions stirred up by rabble rousing stupid politicians? Would a national referendum be an answer? Would this be like asking a nation that is predominently vegetarian in diet, to vote on the rights of a minority amongst them who want to eat meat? Hold an honest referendum separately in each of the nine provinces, to vote on whether the province concerned would wish for greater devolution of political power. This would be the most democratic and just way to ascertain the provincial will on issues that concern a province. The South cannot decide on what the people in the North or East need or want. The North cannot decide what the East or the South need or want.

      Dr.Rajasingham Narendran

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        //The South cannot decide on what the people in the North or East need or want. The North cannot decide what the East or the South need or want.

        Dr.Rajasingham Narendran//

        Beautifully put. Thanks.

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      Al-ambrilla says”Ultimately Sri-Lankan people will decide what’s best for Sri-Lanka.”

      are you including the 25% minorities into the srilankan people you refer to,or not.You can see the minorities want the 13th amendment.So are going to tell them go to hell,this is a sinhala bhuddhist country and you can continue to live here as well behaved guests,but we the 75% sinhalese who are the real srilankan people will decide for you.

      What if then the minorities say,thank you very much but we can manage without you making decisions on our behalf,we will take a piece of this country,register it with the UN and go and live there happily ever after without having to bear the the stench of the overpowering mahawamsa mindset that is suffocating us.These are not minorities of one or two per cent we are talking about,but for every 3 sinhalese 1.

      Potential disintegration of srilanka

      1.tamil north(bosnia)
      2.muslim east(croatia)
      3.kandyan central(kosovo)
      4.”aapu minissu”south(macedonia)
      5.English speaking west(montenegro)
      6.chingalese hambantota(serbia)

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      Democracy does not mean Majoritarian rule. Yes, Sinhalese are the numerical majority in Sri Lanka. After Hitler was elected by majority of Germans, and later when he exterminated 6 million minority Jews, was Germany a true democracy? No, it was a fascist regime.

      In the modern concept of democracy minority rights and human rights must be protected and cherished. That’s why the Ceylon constitution introduced by Britain in 1948 (after Hitler) had a clause 29 to protect the minorities. From the time the Sinhala rulers of Ceylon removed that clause, cancer of Majoritarianism started to spread.

      if Sri Lanka bans the slaughtering of cattle and selling of beef, they deny the rights of people who grow cattle for meat, meat vendors and those who eat beef, including a significant percentage of Sinhalese. Cow hide may have to be imported for making shoes and other items. Is it OK to wear shoes, belts, etc. made of cow hide? Or, only slaughtering is to be banned. Many complex questions can arise from this seemingly simple action.

      In a proper democracy, consent of the minority nations or communities must be obtained. For several millenniums Tamils have been living in the North-East as the majority. That historical fact must be respected in a truly democratic Sri Lanka.

      Democracy is not merely a number game. That’s why there are international laws against: war crimes, crimes against humanity and genocide. There are also individual human rights laws to be ensured in a proper democracy. Many conflicts in so-called democracies with multi-ethnic, multi-religious communities arise because the majority community and its rulers assume democracy simply is a number game. It’s not so.

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        Thiru: But how did your leader do? When Prapakaran was in charge how did the majority Tamils under his leadership treat the Muslims? Have you openly condemned that?

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        Since MR is in the office, we did not have democracy in the country.

        It is just a reality of one man show.

        He just implements what he thinks is right… as it is the case with Impeachement against CJ Dr. Shirani B, several other crime investigations, all these happen with the knoweldge of donkey minded so called visionary man… but today, unlike in the days of CBK, there is no rights for the average lanken in the country. If eminence prises work to their schedules in this mannner, the days that we reach the levels of pakistan is not that far.

        So we dont need to discuss about democratic values in our today^s society.

        He is a tyrannt, that would not respect anyone – this the nation would see in the near future more. Alone taking a flight to Tansania these days, to a country where no previous leaders put the feet, but losing that collosal amounts of funds of the tax payers, he is merry making… just sending Foreign minister should be have been affortable for a country like us. We live from the funds given by world banks. So, to go safari in those countries are not at all acceptable, WHILE averaage masses struggle for their daiyl 3 meals.

        Who would criticise all these ? No body, they have to make allies with African states means not that we have to spend millions of dollars from the budget for their unnecessary unplanned tourages.

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          Srilanken carrier hasn become their pvt jet ?

          Srilanken courts have now become their family courts ?

          Srilanken lands have now become their family asstes ?

          Incapable Opposition is sleeping :(

          God should finally see the grievances of the poor of the poor in the country :(

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        Democracy is voting for the winners (plural) of the Nanthikadal battle.

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    Dayan is missing the point here and still in trenches with no analytical strength which is clouded by his moronic marxist bias.

    SL constitution is a mess and we should fix the constitution with proper check and balances first and then look into district based requirements so that we fix areas which was neglected by the colombians..
    Tamil have language issue and any thing else they ask is nothing but dishonest demand coming from rich Jaffna based racist elite that like to keep poor Tamils as bondage slaves…
    Any patriot like to see his country prosper and all the citizens share that prosperity.. Do you think indians like that ? Crony, Indian supporters that cry for their supper should not be advocating any thing other than go and live in India and leave real citizens of SL to get their house in order..
    Cannot believe this pathetic guy was given a diplomatic post.

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    Dayan Jaythilake Is becoming hysterical and paranoid.

    For you Marvyn De silva is the ultimate Sooth sayer about Sri Lanka.

    What you have written is simply rubbish.

    “The Sinhala hawks believe that Sri Lanka can take on or ignore the Tamil Diaspora, the West, the UN, India, the Western media and the INGOs (not to mention a billion Muslims and 2.3 billion Christians) and do so all at once. “

    What are they going to do ?

    Start Crusade war and Conquests at the same time ?

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    Dayan Jayathilake:

    IF you were the Adviser to the Jews, they would have never established Israel and they would have never continues to exist even with the help of the USA. Remember, Israel was established showing the Back to the British.

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    Dr. Dayan,

    A good and timely analysis and reminder of recent history. The President is now talking that Prof. Tissa Vithane’s APRC report will be basis for discussions in the new PSC. Is this a change of heart or a new subterfuge? If this intent is genuine, why has Prof. Vitharane been kept out of the PSC? The same question can be asked with reference to Rauf Hakeem. Is the president running in circles, chasing his own tail, in the hope that we would get dizzy, before he does?

    Dr.Rajasingham Narendran

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      The link to President saying that the APRC report will be the basis for PSC deliberations:

      http://www.dailymirror.lk/news/31540-mr-says-aprc-will-be-basis-for-psc.html

      Dr.RN

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        Dr.narendran,the sudden talk about the APRC report may be like the plus of the 13th amendment which is now heading for minus.The TNA might rush to the PSC panting panting thinking their going to get the hamburger with the works(tissa vitharana report)and might end up with tissa vitharana only minus the report.

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          Shankar,

          MR is spinning a web for himself! Probably the first spider to be trapped in its own web!

          Dr. RN.

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            Dr.Rajasingham Narendran

            “MR is spinning a web for himself! Probably the first spider to be trapped in its own web!”

            He must have learned it from the sun god.

            Don’t you think it is a good thing for the people. We must encourage MR.

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    Come one baby! Never heard of ‘lying’? Never knew that that was what was going on? Not afraid of taking on India but afraid of some invisible ‘hawks’? Never thought this man would degenerate to the point of a court jester.

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    Recently the Govt has upped the game by allowing Chinese vessels to trawl in Sri Lankan waters of the Indian coast. This could prove to be a dangerous and ill considered move, since Chinese Trawlers could well be used to spy on Indian communications and military movements. In time to come there could be an Indian response, as for India, security is of the highest importance.

    It is surprising that such a foreign policy decision with serious rammifications could be made without recourse to parliment. The President and Defence Secretary will have to take full responsibility for any negative result of this action.

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    Besides starting with a mind boggling ‘parable’ the writer fails deliberately or otherwise to specify the parties to the conflict, which are the state and the terrorists. Once the LTTE is annihilated the state has resorted to address the issues pertaining to possible grievances of the minorities. The resettlement of the displaced people was prioritized with great success. The term reconciliation in Sri Lanka may have been used, though it is a misnomer coined in the West and embraced by the local lackeys, it has connotations linked to the apartheid rule and the aftermath where contradictions were so great and the perpetrators of apartheid rule of decades were not a spent force even after dismantling of the system. We cannot link LTTE terrorism with the Tamil people except that it shared the same ethnicity. There may be grievances specific to minorities and those grievances should be addressed despite LTTE; not with a view for reconciliation but with a view for co-existence.

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    Road to Nanthikadal!

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    BTW who saved the war criminals in Geneva in 2009?

    Wasn’t it DJ? Now he blames them.

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      Muliyawaikkal

      “Wasn’t it DJ? Now he blames them.”

      Didn’t you know it was Hindian who saved DJ’s then masters?

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    Dayan reminds me of ‘chicken little’ with his ‘sky is falling’ theory.

    Ultimately the key questions to answer in my opinion are

    1/ Will India support a separate & independent Tamil nation in it’s backyard.

    Would a separate and independent Tamil nation in it’s backyard ( Northern Sri Lanka ) be favorable for India’s long term interests ? I don’t think so, because this might lend much needed support to the call for a separate Tamil nation in India itself sometime in the future.

    2/ Is the Indian central government sufficiently sympathetic towards the Tamils that they would be willing to antagonize the Sri Lankan govt., by supporting some kind of international intervention in Sri Lanka ?

    Again in my opinion the Indian Central Govt., is only worried about the Tamil vote, especially in regard to the upcoming election in 2014. There is no indication whatsoever that the Northern and Central Indian races are concerned about the plight of Tamils in either Sri Lanka or Tamil Nadu.

    3/ Will the Indians balance the possibility of preventing China from getting a foothold in Sri Lanka for strategic purposes, against the danger of helping to establish a separate Tamil nation in their backyard ?

    I think so.

    4/ The comments in regard to an Indian military invasion overpowering Sri Lanka and Sri Lanka’s chances of defending itself due to fuel and arm supplies being cut off.

    If this happens it will be probably asymmetric warfare ( urban and jungle ) of the kind that is happening in Syria, and not a full frontal war.
    a/. In such an event, Sri Lanka probably has enough arms and ammunition stocks to last for a very long time ( perhaps more than a year or so ) already due to the large stocks it has imported for the Eelam war and the stocks captured from the LTTE.

    b/ In this type of warfare in restricted space ( small area ) fuel wont be much of a problem & even otherwise friendly nations might open up covert supply routes in the Indian ocean south of Sri Lanka ( Galle, Hambantota etc ), which the Indians will be hard pressed to block.

    c/ Most importantly although India might prevail in the end, will India be willing to take unacceptable losses ( which it surely will, judging from the 1987 IPKF fiasco that they got into against the LTTE ) just to help Tamils establish a separate nation ?

    In such a scenario what is likely to happen is India backing a few UN backed economic sanctions at most though I agree that Sri Lanka can ill afford even such punishment.

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      @ America mama,

      Absolutely wrong notion!

      1) India clearly heard lot of noises last couple of years for separate TN country when it supported Srilanka in war which resulted in civilian death. So Congress if it wanted will see dual opportunity, one gaining permanent access in TN which it lost 45 years back to DMK (2) Thus it can suppress growing dissent in TN for separate country request

      2) Here again point (1) holds more water
      3) Yes, in addition to (1) and (2)
      4) Kiddish comment. First India moved million times improved military now and can take anywhere enemy in jungle, terrains, plateau.It has satellite information accurately cover.

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        @Manisekaran Thangavelu

        Thanks for your comment

        1/ Would a separate and independent Tamil nation be in India’s interest ?

        There is more to it than Tamil Nadu. There are other Indian states that are clamoring to break away ( Kashmir , Nagaland, Assam etc ) By supporting a breakup of Sri Lanka, India will set a precedence and lose it’s moral argument against it’s own states from clamoring for independence.

        2/ USA had a million times more advanced military than India or any other nation ( satellite imagery, drones etc )but still lost over 5000 killed and 30000 disabled during their invasion of Iraq.

        Just aerial warfare ( bombing Colombo etc ) will not be enough if the die hard Sri Lankan hardliners decide to hold on. India will have to send in ground troops and will be bogged down in a ground war at least for many months if not a couple of years.

        After the Eelam victory the Sri Lankan army has acquired a totally different morale along nationalistic and patriotic lines and will probably put up a fight before giving up.

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          U r brilliant joker go on give us more fun and laugh..stay in us. we tamils knew how Sinhala modayas fight rats nothing else….u must thankful to india first, without india u Sinhala modaya budhist army no where match great tamil force…just wait…

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            Indeed, who can forget the Sinhala modaya army’s 2009 pest control operation which not only rid the country of a great infestation but ended the reign of the fat rat king Prabha himself :-)

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          You have any idea what amount of help your GOSL took from India to win LTTE. First learn that even before you comment out of pride.
          http://news.rediff.com/slide-show/2009/aug/20/slide-show-1-how-india-helped-lanka-destroy-the-ltte.htm

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      What load of rubbish u r writng man. if india invade srilnka sinhala budhist army run like rats. We seen them so many time during the ltte war man. Without india, us, china, pakis you have to dream about winning ltte.

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        jmuthu,did india,china,paks or US send any troops to fight the LTTE.Give credit where it is due and just accept the fact that sinhalese soldiers beat the LTTE.This is not something new.Sinhalese have been fighting to safeguard their country and religion for centuries quite sucessfully.At one time gajabahu invaded tamilnadu and freed the sinhalese taken there as slaves.

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          which gajabahu? A guest came to Chera kingdom to pray Paatini cult?
          Man dont write your stories,
          http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gajabahu_I

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            mani,the following is what i extracted from the link you yourself gave

            [Sources notwithstanding, Gajabahu is regarded in modern Sri Lanka as an archetype of the mighty Sinhalese monarch, who avenged humiliation by the Cholas and took the sporadically-fought wars between Rajarata and Chola to Indian soil. Furthermore two important religious institutions – the cult of the goddess Pattini and the Perahara – also trace their origins to his reign. The Sri Lanka Army as an infantry regiment, Gajaba Regiment named after the warrior King and the Sri Lanka Navy had named a ship named after the King, the SLNS Gajabahu.]

            So we both seem to be in agreement on this matter.Also tell Jaya to be careful because the former gajaba regiment commander Gothabaya could invade again,capture her and bring her to srilanka just as sita was at one time brought here by ravana.

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              shankar

              “capture her and bring her to srilanka just as sita was at one time brought here by ravana.”

              Wasn’t Ravana a Tamil and a devotee of god Siva?

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              Come on man, let me tell you all the supply route for ltte cut after 2006. ltte made a damn bloody mistake just accept just solution. They should have show the world they are ready for peaceful solution. Praba believed only solution separation which I believe he always right. whats happening now is shows he is right. Sinhala Buddhism never allow Tamils in peace. Please don’t bring this kajbahu crab story man, we are living in the 21st century, you and me know how ltte fought a war, most time Sinhala veerayas ran like rats. Without arm supply how they can fight this barbarians. These Sinhala Buddhist terrorist forgot everything how India helped them to win this war. I don’t want to hear any dinosaur story’s man…

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              You selectively took the whole topic, read first whether gajabahu went as guest or as invador. Read whole topic where it said it was a visit with just two boys.

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              You are welcome to invade if you have capability” (:-)

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              “Regarded in modern srilanka” – because of false history feeding into mind of you.

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              mani,you say”you are welcome to invade if you have capability”.

              We have already invaded and are watching your puratchi thalaivi’s every move.Remember what happened to KP in malaysia.Only difference is that jaya will be dumped into the palk strait.

              hail,gajabahu gothabaya the saviour of srilanka.

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          Also read,
          http://news.rediff.com/slide-show/2009/aug/20/slide-show-1-how-india-helped-lanka-destroy-the-ltte.htm

          Just army soldiers can never win any war, it was big help from India

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            mani,India giving the tip off for the LTTE supply ships to be destroyed was indeed a kick in the solar plexus for the LTTE,but still it was the srilankan foot soldiers who had to do the hard slogging,not the indian army.Help certainly was beneficial but if the soldiers had refused to go on moving forward because they were getting killed and maimed then prabha would have lived to fight another day.They finished the job because if they went forward they had to face johnny(johnny mines)but if they stopped they had to face fonny(fonseka).He had court martialled about 5000 and also there were about 50000 deserters over the period of the war since its inception.Any more desertions and it would have slowed down the progress,but i agree with you that eventually LTTE would have lost because india was its enemy too.

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              Shankar,

              where did i say that only Indian help made a victory. I said, if your soldiers would have not been helped by the crafts provided by India it would have been one more fight like what happened between 1983 to 2008, Thats all, remember the same soldiers were thrashed in 2001.

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              shankar

              “but still it was the srilankan foot soldiers who had to do the hard slogging,not the indian army”

              LTTE’s warehouse ships were anchored near Andaman islands where those ships were destroyed.

              Did Sri Lankan air force have the capability to hit the target and return to base safely without refueling its fighter jets?

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    “Contrary to the claims of Sri Lankan officials who present our victory as the first such in the 21st century,….” I hope Dayan read Paul Moorcraft’s book on total destruction of LTTE.

    “there aren’t any war crimes/violations of international humanitarian law campaigns in the UN HRC in Geneva, not even on its sidelines by Channel 4 and INGOs, against Russia’s victory in Chechnya.” This comparison/statement is deceitful.

    “…Sri Lanka can win the war and lose the peace by one of two errors. The first would be to permit the separatist project to continue to function, for separatist political agencies to function unchecked. We could thus peacefully jeopardise that which the armed forces have won on the battlefield.” This is the greatest challenge faced by Sri Lanka at the moment. Separatist political agencies work day and night both internally within the country and externally to achieve their separatist objectives. TNA is a construct of LTTE. It still carries that legacy both physically and emotionally. West is allowing maximum space possible for the diaspora separatist elements to carry out their plans unimpeded. Tamil Nadu political leadership is openly hostile to Sri Lanka and has passed unprecedented resolutions against Sri Lanka. The Indian central govt is either unable or unwilling to check this hostility. In such an environment, the only option Sri Lanka has at it’s disposal is to increase the potential cost of unwanted intervention by Inia and/or West as high as possible and make separatism an extremely costly and painful proposition to Tamil separatists themselves. At leaset it will compel the strategists of those camps think twice before intervention.

    In DJ’s own admission, 13A is the outcome of “an inherited, uneven bilateral agreement.” It also needs to be pointed out that India did not fulfill it’s obligations under the accord. India basically ran away creating a much bigger mess in Sri Lanka in the process. Therefore India does not possess the moral capacity to demand Sri Lanka to not to amend 13A according to the wishes of Sri Lanka.

    As DJ concluded, the most appropriate course of action for Sri Lanka and India at this point of time could be to address Northern issues “through co-management and politico-diplomatic quasi-partnership” between the two parties that recognises their mutual strategic interests.

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