6 December, 2021

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The Two Year Crash Course

By Tisaranee Gunasekara

“We can only shake our heads at how all of us followed this lunatic…” ~ A German general (quoted in Volker Ullrich’s Hitler – Downfall – 1939-45)

The first seeds of America’s Afghan misadventure were sown in the closing decade of the 19th Century. The emerging global superpower’s first imperial ventures began with wars in Cuba and the Philippines. “…America is beginning a long course of error and wrong,” lamented Charles Elliot Norton, Professor of Fine Arts at Harvard, “and is likely to become more and more a power for disturbance and barbarism” (quoted in The Proud Tower by Barbra Tuchman).

When the history of China’s own descent into imperialism is written, Sri Lanka will have the dubious honour of figuring prominently in it. While the world’s eyes are on Taiwan, China is flexing its newly honed imperial muscles in the Indian Ocean. What is at stake is nothing less than Lankan sovereignty and China’s ability to impose its will on third world nations financially beholden to it.

The story began with President Gotabaya Rajapaksa’s ill conceived plan to force Lankan agriculture go fully organic between one season and the next. Importation of chemical fertilisers was banned and a consignment of organic fertiliser ordered from China. Lanka’s National Plant Quarantine Services tested two samples of the fertiliser consignment and found them to be unsterile and highly contaminated with bacteria (Bacillus and Erwinia) “which can be pathogenic to plants” (The Sunday Times – 19.9.2021). The Rajapaksa regime’s initial response was to discredit the test results. But scientists spoke out and the public protested, forcing the regime to reject the consignment.

The matter should have ended there, especially since the supplier, Qingdao Seawin Biotech, had reportedly admitted in its shipping advice that the consignment may contain microorganisms (and is thus unsterile). But in China’s eyes, it was dealing not with a sovereign nation, but with a dependent nation. Beijing discarded the smiling mask and Colombo was treated to a display of wolf-warrior diplomacy. The Chinese Embassy issued a not-so-veiled threat, stating that a rejection of the fertiliser could affect relations between two countries. The Chinese company wrote a letter to Lankan authorities on October 22nd, stating that the consignment will reach Colombo that day, to hell with your order.

The Rajapaksas who never miss a chance to proclaim Lankan sovereignty from any available rooftop were clearly unnerved by this lupine display. They made no public response to either letter. The self-declared guardians of Lankan independence, from Buddhist monks to the likes of Wimal Weerawansa too maintained a death-like silence. But the National Plant Quarantine Centre stood firm and public pressure built up. Caught between the hammer of Chinese compulsion and the anvil of local opposition, the Rajapaksas ran for the backdoor.

The state-owned Ceylon Fertiliser Company, represented by the AG’s Department, went to Colombo Commercial Court seeking an enjoining order against the Chinese company, its local agent and the state-owned Peoples Bank which had provided the Letter of Credit. (The local agent, incidentally, is Chelina Capital Cooperation, whose managing director is a close relation of Prime Minister’s secretary, Gamini Senarath, according to a report in a Feb 15th 2015 report in The Sunday Times).

While China was brandishing its grievance, Sri Lanka ordered a consignment of nano-nitrogen fertiliser from India. The regime’s current focus is neither the suitability nor the efficacy of this fertiliser type but how to spare presidential blushes by passing it off as organic. The fact that Colombo is buying fertiliser from India must be infuriating and alarming Beijing in equal measure. Add to that recent noteworthy developments from the secret LNG deal with an American company to Namal Rajapaksa’s much hyped visit to India, and China might be wondering whether Sri Lanka is trying to put a few inches of distance between herself and her financial master.

In a recent Foreign Policy piece, Andrew Erickson (a professor of strategy in the U.S. Naval War College’s China Maritime Studies Institute), and Gabriel Collins, (of Rice University) argue that Chinese power is likely to decline after a peak period of about five years due to “deteriorating demographic profile, structural economic problems, and technological estrangement from global innovation centres.” Therefore in the next ten years Beijing will move aggressively to promote “a narrative of inevitable Chinese strategic dominance in Asia and beyond,” they conclude. Like America and its imperial predecessors, Beijing too “is likely to become more and more a power for disturbance and barbarism.” Thanks to the Rajapaksas, Sri Lanka might get a taste of that unappetising brew, soon.

Their shattered utopia

Ursula Le Guin’s iconic short story, The Ones who Walk away from Omelas, is both a gripping tale of fantasy and a reflection on the nature and cost of utopia. Omelas is a land where everyone is happy, safe, and prosperous, a place of beauty and grace. But this ideal state comes at a cost, and that cost is borne by a single child, imprisoned in a tiny underground room and condemned to a life of neglect, malnutrition, and fear, an existence that is the exact antithesis of the paradisiacal life enjoyed by every other citizen of Omelas. Every single Omelan knows about the child. The initial reaction is horror at the price of their happiness. Eventually, most learn to live with it by forgetting. The few who can’t, walk away from Omelas, never to return.

That was the deal 6.9million Lankan voters made with the Rajapaksas almost two years ago – a utopia for the majority community built on the subjugation of minorities. The deal was made not in ignorance, but in knowledge. “Trump forged a politics of white tribalism and white people embraced it,” said US commentator Jamelle Bouie soon after 2016 presidential election. Similarly, the Rajapaksas forged a politics of Sinhala-Buddhist tribalism and the absolute majority of Sinhala-Buddhist voters embraced it.

The Rajapaksas and their patriotic army were going to build a patriotic paradise, which would allow “the trustworthy to roam everywhere under heaven while making it hard for the discredited to take a single step,” to quote President Xi Jinping on the purpose of China’s Social Credit system (Newsweek – 1.5.2018). China would fund this utopia and Sri Lanka would be China’s faithful acolyte in the Indian Ocean. As Chinese foreign minister asserted on the Jan 2020 visit to Colombo, “As Sri Lanka’s strategic partner China will continue to standby Sri Lanka’s interests. China stands for the country’s sovereignty, territorial integrity and independence. We will not allow any outside influences to interfere with matters that are essentially internal concerns of Sri Lanka.”

Two years later, the promised utopia is in shambles. The hardcore Rajapaksa base might be loyal still, but its soft outer core and the floating voters are deserting the family. As prices continue to rise and shortages continue to worsen, the haemorrhaging will intensify. To make matters worse, Beijing, beset by its own economic woes, is proving unwilling – or unable – to foot the bill of Rajapaksa extravaganza.

So the Rajapaksas cannot afford to give the West its conge but must work at engagement, even a few concessions. Dollars are scarce, and losing the GSP plus facility would be fatal at multiple levels. (If the Americans offer the Millennium grant again, the Rajapaksas would grab the 500million dollars with both hands and on bended knees). There is also the fear of Western sanctions. The US and the EU opt for targeted sanctions these days, asset freezes and travel bans on individual politicians and officials. A recent example is EU sanctions targeting Nicaraguan vice president (who also happens to be the president’s wife) and several top officials. The Rajapaksas may be willing to brave sanctions if the brunt is borne by ordinary Lankans (and thus can be weaponised politically). But sanctions that spare the economy and the people while targeting family assets abroad or the family’s chances of visiting Western lands would be quite another matter.

In this context, an attempt at recalibrating Lanka’s regional and international relations makes sense from a Rajapaksa point of view. After all, they have a Family Inc. to save. The past two years, however harrowing for ordinary Lankans, have been good for the Rajapaksas, a fruitful time in which their utopia has reached near completion. The 19th Amendment is gone and the 20th has placed all power in familial hands. The succession from brother to brother and from uncle to nephew is assured. The AG’s Department is busy withdrawing cases against the family and their acolytes. Convicted murderer Duminda Silva is free to break more laws. The late Eliyantha White’s son and daughter are reportedly being provided with police security while Shani Abeysekara’s letter asking for protection is unanswered.

Power is theirs, impunity is theirs. To keep those gains, they must find a way of hoodwinking the electorate again.

At a consultative committee meeting of the Ministry of Wildlife and Forest Conservation, parliamentarians Sridaran and Rasamanikkam had tried to raise some issues; prior notice had been given and the matters were on the agenda. According parliamentarian Sumanthiran, government members – with the sole exception of Chandima Weerakkody – had shouted them down, calling them kotiya (Tiger), thrasthavadiya (terrorist) and LTTE.

Sri Lanka’s state minister for women and child development celebrated the World Children’s Day in the company of Kumaran Pathmanathan alias KP, the LTTE’s international money manager and chief arms procurer, still wanted by India for the assassination of Rajiv Gandhi. Mr. Pathmanathan is now living in sunshine, because once arrested, he opted to throw his lot with the Rajapaksas. The ace Tiger struts free while ordinary Tamils are being detained for commemorating their war dead. In a related development, PM Rajapaksa is dusting off his old proposal to ban cattle slaughter.

The PC polls are on the cards, and how can the Rajapaksas mobilise their base to defend family-power, sans an enemy?

The Viyathmaga to Ruin

There’s some good news, coming from Turkey. Six opposition parties have agreed to form a broad front against President Erdogan and to turn the next election into ‘a kind of referendum’ on the presidential system. As an opposition leader put it, “Today, Turkey is facing a systemic problem. Not just one person can solve it” (New York Times – 23.10.2021).

Though a systemic problem cannot be solved by one person, it can be created by one person, definitely one family, especially if an electorate is myopic enough to place too much power in a single fist. As the Lankan electorate did, in 2019 and 2020.

Elias Canetti in Crowds and Power, highlights the danger inherent in what he calls ‘the anxiety of command.’ The greater the power to command, the longer the rule, the greater the anxiety and the danger; “A ruler can keep it hidden or under control…but in the course of a life, it can increase, until, as with the certain of the Roman emperors, it suddenly manifests itself in madness.”

Think of the world’s most dangerous car racing tracks, Nürburgring Nordschilfe or Le Mans. Imagine a Devel Sixteen or a SSC Tuatara, driven by a racing enthusiast who is too divorced from reality to see the twists and turns in the track or feel the speed of the vehicle.

That is Sri Lanka today.

Two years of Rajapaksa rule, Sri Lanka is akin not to the Singapore of Viyathmaga dreams but to Lebanon, a failing land.

Lebanon’s road to perdition sounds strangely familiar. It was cursed with a corrupt and sectarian leadership which acted in a bubble, refusing to see the unravelling of the economy and the suffering of the people. Beirut port explosion and the pandemic exacerbated the existing malaise. Today the country is in freefall. Unemployment, rising prices, shortages, and constant blackouts are turning ordinary lives into hell. Communal violence has broken out. Bank deposits are frozen, foreign exchange crisis has spun beyond control and the country has gone into a partial defaulting for the first time in its history.

The same fate Fitch Ratings has forecasted as a possibility for Sri Lanka in 2022.

Through the inferno, the family continues its merry way. President Gotabaya is turning inorganic into organic, PM Mahinda is focusing on cattle, Minister Basil is working at miracles and Minister Namal is touring India in the company of 100 Buddhist monks. They manage because the opposition is even more divorced from reality. Every ‘figure’ in the opposition is nursing presidential dreams and probably regards the competitors on the same side of the divide as greater threats than the regime. A united front is possible only on the basis of a definitive plan (rather than a nebulous promise as in 2015) to abolish the presidency. Sans that the crash course will go on and on until the ruinous end.

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Latest comments

  • 22
    2

    In one word: Gobbasena.

    • 19
      0

      Mr president ……. what you lack is not experience but intelligence.

      Intelligence is a great substitute for experience.

      When I first went to London, I had no experience of the place: took me weeks to figure-out the subways/roads ….. how to get about the place. I have gone with my kids who also had no experience of the place ……. we arrived in the morning and by mid-day they had figured-out the place: all the intricacies of the complex transport-system …….. and was driving the rental car like a London cabbie with years of experience ……..

      Having intelligence ……… or intelligence imparted through a good system of education …….. can do that to a person ……….

      No offence Mr President, but you are a very stupid man: an imbecile without even the little intelligence to realize that. You have found 6.9 million Lankans who are as stupid or more stupid than you.

      They deserve you ………….. and you deserve them …………..

      Hope you enjoy one another’s company!

      • 5
        1

        Nimal,
        “No offence Mr President, but you are a very stupid man: an imbecile without even the little intelligence to realize that”
        Not mincing words today, are we?

        • 5
          1

          OC,

          His stupidity and incompetence is mind-blowing …….. looking back, he didn’t even have the competence/intelligence to deceive the voters …….. he just fronted up and his brothers and the others around him did all the work/deceiving for him ……..

          People with intelligence adopt to unfamiliar situations very quickly: don’t need years of experience ………. he is not interested in doing anything; just marking time to collect his loot and vanish ……… even that Basil, Cabraal and the others have to do for him ……..

          What can you say? …….He just didn’t scrape in: got a landslide ……….. Well, that’s Lankans for you!

      • 2
        1

        nimal fernando,
        You are witty, … hands down! But, being witty is not the same as being intelligent.
        Now, take this up.
        …. intelligence imparted through a good system of education.
        This is news / new … to me.
        No one has ever told me that education imparts intelligence; eucation imparts knowledge, they have.
        Intelligence is something you have to be born with, I believed.
        Should I correct myself. Use your wit to twist it!

        • 0
          2

          “intelligence imparted through a good system of education.”

          Nathan,

          A man can go to a gym …… lift weights/exercise and develop his muscles.

          Teach a young child to play chess …… get him/her to exercise his brain …… that develops intelligence.

          This is a very straight answer ……… I stripped it down and kept it very simple. No wit, no twist. :))

          What do you say? The ball’s in your court.


          I have a lot more to add ……. but that would’ve confused the whole shebang.

          • 1
            1

            nimal fernando,
            Chess… You are flattering me. S.Thomas’ were National Champions, under my guidance. That is Skills development; Not Intelligence.
            Your logic would lead to, ‘Grandmasters are the most intelligent’.
            You seem confused!

            • 0
              1

              nimal, Intelligence is believed to be among the conditioned genes that have to come from the mother. (Googled)

              • 0
                0

                “have to come from the mother.”

                Well, that explains …….. my kids. ……… Yes, at times I did wonder.

            • 0
              1

              Nathan,

              I can throw it right back at you and say that you are the one that’s confused ………. but let us keep this strictly to the points.

              “That is Skills development”

              Skills of what? ……… Isn’t it skills of the mind? ……… Then isn’t it developing intelligence?

              “‘Grandmasters are the most intelligent’”

              Intelligence is not a competition. …….. Sure, some people are more intelligent than others but that’s not the point here. ……. The point is, can intelligence be taught/trained? I believe it can be taught/trained up to a certain level – we are not talking about geniuses here – in fact, how we handle our daily situations is through learned-intelligence; not born-intelligence.

              For the sake of argument …….. is a robot with artificial-intelligence born or trained/taught? :))

              Intelligence can be grown. — “It’s not always the people who start out the smartest that end up the smartest.” – Alfred Binet, inventor of the IQ test

              I enjoy free-flowing arguments with twists and turns :)) ………. but to make this argument more precise …….. I suppose at one stage we have to go back and define what we mean by “intelligence.”

              • 0
                1

                continued


                “S.Thomas” ……. I was persona non grata even before I was born …….. my father managed to get kicked out! Saved me from turning out to be another SWRD ……… I’d rather be another Gota ……..

                Do you know the Thomian who is a driving-force behind the Galle Literary Festival?

                • 0
                  1

                  Nathan,

                  To disprove your argument about “intelligence is born” ……… I just remembered this …………. Some time ago the computer Deep Blue beat the then chess world champion Garry Kasparov.

                  1. Was the computer born with intelligence?

                  2. Whose DNA did the computer have?

                  3. If the computer was not born with intelligence who gave it to it?

                  4. If intelligence can be given then the argument is close.

                  5. Is that wit, twist or intelligence? :))

                  • 0
                    1

                    nimal, When you are comfortable with your logic and arguments, I would not want to disturb you.

                    • 0
                      1

                      Nathan,

                      I had some free time to think ……….

                      What we are born with, is not intelligence but the capacity/ability to be intelligent.

                      What is the magnitude of this capacity? ……… Well, the ubiquitous ol’ bell-curve ……… most are smack in the middle: average …….

                      “Intelligence” is developed by training/honing/educating/challenging ……… this capacity to be intelligent ………

                      If this capacity to be intelligent is not drawn out through training/education/challenges/experience ……… people will die stupid …….. without the ability to utilise their capacity to be intelligent.


                      Who are the people in the forum (or in Lanka) ……. that have taken maximum advantage of their ability/capacity?

                      Well, my answer will floor many ………… :))

                    • 0
                      1

                      Nathan,

                      My arguments in the forum are not about winning/losing …… but to test if the views I hold are true/false.

                      Long ago, I read something similar to this ……. https://www.firstthingsfirst.org/early-childhood-matters/brain-development/

                      BTW …. I practiced my beliefs/views on my kids …. no religion ….. stimulating their average intellectual capacity – Chess, Kumon, Suzuki Method of teaching music ……… in high school, one finished college math with high distinctions; EPGY Stanford …….

                      I don’t believe they are extraordinarily intelligent ………. but their average capacity is well developed ………..

                  • 1
                    0

                    Nimal, Nathan,
                    I think you would have heard of Eliza, the famous software that can carry on a conversation with a human so well that the hapless human can’t tell the difference?

                    • 0
                      0

                      OC,

                      We helped them in their early stages …….now they have overtaken us …….. soon they will control us! ……. and we all will be wishing for the Rajapakses to come back!!

                      Remember HAL, 2001 Space Odyssey?

  • 25
    5

    Very widely read and brilliant as always.

    Thank you, Tisaranee

  • 20
    3

    The following two paragraph summarises the true nature of Rajapaksas face to use LTTE Terrorism and the use Buddhist Sinhala Fundamentalism to cheat Buddhist Sinhalese. nobody including Opposition or Tamil Politicians or Left and right allies of Rajapaksas, Buddhist Monks do not utter a word about these things. Even many writers of CT and commentators keep silence. Why?

    “Sri Lanka’s state minister for women and child development celebrated the World Children’s Day in the company of Kumaran Pathmanathan alias KP, the LTTE’s international money manager and chief arms procurer, still wanted by India for the assassination of Rajiv Gandhi. Mr. Pathmanathan is now living in sunshine, because once arrested, he opted to throw his lot with the Rajapaksas. The ace Tiger struts free while ordinary Tamils are being detained for commemorating their war dead.”

    “Trump forged a politics of white tribalism and white people embraced it,” said US commentator Jamelle Bouie soon after 2016 presidential election. Similarly, the Rajapaksas forged a politics of Sinhala-Buddhist tribalism and the absolute majority of Sinhala-Buddhist voters embraced it.

    • 4
      14

      Ajith,
      “Similarly, the Rajapaksas forged a politics of Sinhala-Buddhist tribalism and the absolute majority of Sinhala-Buddhist voters embraced it.”
      —-
      Politics of anti-Sinhala Tamil-racist tribalism embraced by Tamils is worse than Sinhala-Buddhist tribalism because Sinhala-Buddhist tribalism did not promote violence but Tamil-racist tribalism promoted terrorism against Sinhala Buddhists.

      • 8
        1

        Partly agree, but Sinhala Buddhist had their mindset that this country is theirs and not for others. The division and differentiation commenced in 1956 with the ascendant of SWRD. This was the reason no other person except Sinhala Buddhist can become the head of state. This is enough to carve out the mindset of others to rally around opposites.

        Sinhalese who migrated Western world enjoy their freedom of culture and religion, if they had a narrow mindset like Sinhalese in SL what will be the reaction.

  • 22
    3

    We would reach Lebanon levels by 2022.
    But what is worse is that there is no challenge to the Rajapakses from the Opposition ranks even beyond that………….

  • 18
    4

    ” A united front is possible only on the basis of a definitive plan (rather than a nebulous promise as in 2015) to abolish the presidency. “
    A definitive plan is one that is designed to rescue the economy. How to do that? First, by living within our means. Not just the government, but the people as well. Do we need SUV’s? Do we need wall-to-wall TV’s ? Do we need air conditioning in every bank and supermarket? A lot of the conspicuous consumption is carried out on credit, which must be stopped. Why are a million able-bodied men driving tuk tuks? Is it not because various governments facilitated them? Much easier than building factories, eh? The people themselves have asked for, and received too much mollycoddling, from free education to free healthcare. But nobody is willing to pay significant taxes. This has to end, but I don’t see any politicians who are willing to commit suicide by offering to take away the free goodies. It’s either that, or selling off the country piecemeal, which is what many Sinhala kings did anyway.

    • 3
      15

      old codger,
      “First, by living within our means. Not just the government, but the people as well.”

      Indigenous Sinhalayo in Sinhale could not live within their means because Tamils launched a war against Sinhalayo to grab their land to create a separate State for the Dravidians brought to Yapanaya by colonial rulers. The Government had to spend a colossal amount of money to eliminate Tamil terrorists promoted by separatist Tamil politicians.
      Even after eliminating Tamil Terrorists, the Government had to waste Sinhala tax payers’ money to build infrastructure damaged by Tamil terrorists, pay compensation to Tamils who launched the war and claim that they are the victims, reconciliation programs, rehabilitate LTTE Tamil terrorists etc.
      The debt burden of the country increased because the Government had to borrow from foreign countries to by arms, ammunition and other military equipment.
      —-
      Tamil and Muslim terrorists are responsible for dragging the economy of the country into this mess.

      • 5
        1

        Eagle,
        “Indigenous Sinhalayo in Sinhale could not live within their means because Tamils launched a war against Sinhalayo”
        Malle Pol? Where did I say anything about Sinhalayo? But thanks anyway, if the cap fits, please wear it.

  • 8
    2

    Who’s bookshelf is that?

    • 7
      0

      Captain M,
      There is no bookshelf. It’s Photoshop.

      • 2
        1

        old codger

        “There is no bookshelf. It’s Photoshop.”

        Naaaaaaaa
        He is thinking man’s general.
        If you think he will generally send a white van to your house. .

  • 23
    3

    It is really ironic! Just behind him and to the left is a book titled “Why Nations Fail.” If only he had read that book we would all be so much better off!

    • 12
      2

      Captain Morgan.

      This is the only book authored by him………….

    • 6
      1

      Captain Morgan: Not to the left. Look at the front of the bookshelf. It is a picture of a “Living Traitor” who is engaged in “SELLING” Sri Lanka to China, India, and now to the US.

      • 2
        0

        Simon

        “It is a picture of a “Living Traitor” who is engaged in “SELLING” Sri Lanka to China, India, and now to the US.”

        Nothing wrong in being a Traitor, look at VP, he sold everything to Hindia, the West, Premadasa, Rajapaksas, ………………

        With heavy heat I don’t mind being a traitor if I could get away with a good reward and a safe escape route. I don’t mind working with nimal fernando.
        Any objection?

  • 24
    2

    The patriot who gave up a comfortable life in the US to save the motherland, first, from terrorism, & then, transform the country to prosperity & splendour, is now confirmed as, not a master strategist but a bungling ego maniac, very much acting the proverbial bull in the china shop. His viyathmaga intellectuals were nothing but self serving cronies & his choice of Ministers, who were to help him with the building of the nation to that of a land of milk & honey, are uneducated yobs, thugs & murderers. No wonder he needed his old military buddies around him, just in case the natives got restless.

    Blame the pandemic or the recovery, govt. bungling is obvious. The overnight ban on chemical fertilizer was not thought through & the timing was disastrous. Now the country is bankrupt & its not rocket science to understand the parallels with Lebanon. We can expect severe shortages, rationing & black outs in the days to come but will we continue to be in denial?

    Cont.

  • 15
    3

    Cont

    Its time political parties acted with responsibility by nominating credible candidates & the mases voting intelligently, instead of misguided sense patriotism but with high entry barriers, the possibility of honest, competent people from the civil society entering politics is nil. Another 2 years of this regime, SL will be among the states beyond recovery, such as, Afghanistan, with anarchy & wide spread poverty & starvation. Maybe an Arab Spring will happen in SL too but its not the answer & in this context, I hope Nagananda & others like him will have the opportunity

    • 6
      7

      Raj-UK,
      “Another 2 years of this regime, SL will be among the states beyond recovery,…”
      —-
      Tamils had the same dream when they dragged the terrorist campaign to massacre Sinhala Buddhists and ruin the economy for three decades. But, indigenous Sinhalayo prevailed.

      • 2
        3

        Who are the indigenous sinhalaya?
        Are they Rajapakshes.
        .
        🐕🐃🐕🐃🐕😡🐕🐃🐕🐃🐕🐃🐕🐃

        • 3
          2

          If they are real indigenous people, they should be working in favour of the citizens in this country. Looking at the manner how current leadership moves forward, can anybody feels like that ? From distribution of jabs to the people, letting innocient people in a lurch, revealed a lot about true nature of them..
          .
          God bless srilanka☹☹☹☹☹☹☹☹

        • 2
          3

          leelagemalli,
          “Who are the indigenous sinhalaya?”

          Didn’t they teach the history of Sinhale, the Land of Sinhalayo and Vedda Eththo in your school?

      • 3
        2

        Eagle Eye

        Don’t you have any other opinion outside the Tamil context? I would say it is the ‘indigenous Sinhala’ Rajapakses & their cronies, more than the Tamils, who ruined the economy in the past 2 decades.

        • 2
          3

          Raj-UK,
          “…it is the ‘indigenous Sinhala’ Rajapakses & their cronies, more than the Tamils, who ruined the economy in the past 2 decades.”

          It is Tamil and Muslim terrorists and ‘Yahapalana’ dong keys who ruined the economy. After defeating Tamil terrorists who ruined the economy, indigenous Sinhala Rajapakses and their cronies revived the economy. From 2010 to 2015, the GDP had a steady growth reaching around 7% by 2014. After ‘Yahapalana’ dong keys took over the Government in 2015, the GDP went down and reached 2.3% in 2019.

      • 2
        1

        Eagle Eye

        Don’t you have any other opinion outside the Tamil context?

        In my humble opinion, it is the ‘indigenous Sinhala’ Rajapakses & their cronies, more than the Tamils, who ruined the economy in the past 2 decades. In fact, it is the many indigenous Sinhalayo in politics & the military who must be thanking the Tamil terrorists for the opportunities given to earn mega bucks.

  • 15
    3

    Why so many books behind a person who can barely read? ……… Even if read with great difficulty (or force ol’ GL to read them to him) would hardly comprehend ……….

    The Rajapakse image in the making ………. EE, Soma, ……. wanna buy?

    I hear, the Eifel Tower is for sale again for the third time ………………


    https://www.smithsonianmag.com/history/man-who-sold-eiffel-tower-twice-180958370/

  • 16
    2

    Many who foretold what a disaster it would be to elect the incompetent, corrupt, justice evading high criminal Gotabaya Rajapaksa are shaking our heads at those who voted for this criminal, and overwhelmingly gave the SLLP alliance a majority in the parliament.

    Let’s hope most of those who voted in these corrupt, incompetent rogues are capable of shaking their heads at themselves for their choices.

  • 16
    1

    I knew from the very beginning (since the election campaign design and rolling off it) that this corrupted and hegemonic “Rajapakse & Co. Inc” will never make it to the “Winning” goal as desired by the “Misguided” people. The “Big Man” named “DIYASENA” – Gotabaya Nandasena Rajapakse has succumbed to his “OWN” “Arrogance”, “Short-sightedness” and “Incompetence” in the matters of Governing the county’s affairs and had been forced to admit meekly to his “FAILURE”. In substitution to my understanding, one would say: “An EVIL spell has fallen on Rajapakse & Co, Inc. for all the atrocities committed against the people defying all the promises made during the election times”. No wonder even Cardinal Rev. Ranjith Malcolm who prayed at the Katuwapitiya Church, the other day handed over to “GOD” to do what is necessary to bring “JUSTICE” to victims of the Easter Bombing Massacre. A “REVOLT” within the “CAMP” has arisen and watch what is going to happen.

    Dear Readers: Please listen to the speech made by Susil Premajayantha in Parliament. This “JOKER” is supposed to be a “Lawyer” and who claimes to have signed the “Nominations” of “Rajapakses” three times asking us: “Are we to be “Signal Posts” in the Government?

    • 2
      1

      Simon@
      .
      I m in full agreement with u.I happened to listen Kadamandiya sort of people today and what they think of “NPP/JVP” . Most of them repeat that JVP ers are good only at blame games. .
      ☹☹☹☹☹☹☹☹☹☹

  • 20
    4

    Look at this fellow Goat, stupidity is oozing from his Hambantota face.

  • 9
    1

    If ye want ye rewards in the next world practice God’s 10 Commandments ……… If ye want ye rewards in this world forget God, Buddha, Lusting is the man!

    Guidelines for aspiring Lankan pols ……… smart-patriots ………. who have nothing but the welfare of the country and the people at heart ………….

    “COUNT” VICTOR LUSTIG’S TEN COMMANDMENTS OF THE CON

    1. Be a patient listener (it is this, not fast talking, that gets a con-man his coups).

    2. Never look bored.

    3. Wait for the other person to reveal any political opinions, then agree with them. (SWRD’s genius/brilliance)

    4. Let the other person reveal religious views, then have the same ones. (Be a Sinhala-Buddhist ….. even if you don’t practice Buddhism ……… and not even a Sinhalese)

    5. Hint at sex talk, but don’t follow it up unless the other fellow shows a strong interest. (Give ear to Old Codger’s observations of young gals)

    • 9
      0

      continued

      6. Never discuss illness, unless some special concern is shown. (EE’s mental illness is taboo)

      7. Never pry into a person’s personal circumstances (they’ll tell you all eventually). (Never told Sinhala_Man my identity ……. and knows his, even without asking or having any interest in)

      8. Never boast. Just let your importance be quietly obvious. (MO of Native Vedda)

      9. Never be untidy.

      10. Never get drunk. (Pretend to be drunk while sober ……. the only way to survive Lanka …… without losing sanity)

      • 6
        0

        nimal fernando

        Please watch:
        Africa in the next 25 years will be recolonized – Prof. PLO Lumumba
        https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pmXSi6_vFAI

        • 3
          0

          Native,

          Thanks for the link. Like him, there are few who shatter colonial myths and put the record straight. ……….. but the blame for leading many ex-colonial countries to ruin should fall on the leaders and the people of the respective countries themselves.

          In Lanka, there are many who always blame “external forces” for our plight …….. but most of the blame for our ruin should fall on ourselves.

          Never heard of Thomas Sankara ……… it seems he left a remarkable legacy in just 4 years of rule …………

          • 4
            0

            nimal fernando

            Please read the following if you want to know more about
            Thomas Sankara:
            Remembering Thomas Sankara
            By Ben Nkem Oramalugo 

            26 October 2021
            https://guardian.ng/opinion/remembering-thomas-sankara/

            • 2
              0

              Native,

              Thanks. A very good read.

    • 6
      0

      Nimal,
      “(Give ear to Old Codger’s observations of young gals”
      Now, now. Are you complimenting Ramona?

  • 15
    3

    This is a masterclass of an essay. Thank you, Tisaranee.

    The sense of foreboding, that the Rajapaksa Inc project will survive and prosper, is strong, but what is the most painful to realise, as articulated in this piece, is this monumentally disappointing truth:

    “They manage because the opposition is even more divorced from reality. Every ‘figure’ in the opposition is nursing presidential dreams and probably regards the competitors on the same side of the divide as greater threats than the regime.”

    Come on, Sajith, AKD, Champika, Suma, Eran, Harsha, Rasamanickam and Prashan de Visser, to name a few; the electorate implores to to rise up, unite and conquer: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nBCzq2bcPWw

  • 20
    3

    TG as usual, at her best. Honest, powerful and hard hitting but dose it matter?? Madam I totally agree with your findings but I have a nagging suspicion that Lankan bureaucrats, AG and Judiciary are working under the Mafia family. This case filed by Fertilizer institute represented by AG is just an eye wash. Rajapaksas are playing good cop bad cop to the gallery to keep those 7 million retards entertained.

  • 18
    3

    Today Clown Minister Dullas came up with finding of the year. 85 % ??? children in North watch Indian TV channels hence they do not know our made up history. The retard dosen’t realize there is social media with unlimited access and many countries around the world now have TV access to Netflix, Amazon and many foreign channels which have made them smarter and ask questions?? Just see the response of Mahindananda to journalist , when confronted his lies about contaminated fertilizer from China.

    • 3
      0

      Chiv,
      Dullas is ignorant as usual. It was possible to watch Indian channels in the North 10 years ago. But they have switched to digital and our receivers don’t work any more.

      • 1
        3

        OC
        There are companies that show Indian and other channels. There is still a lot of choice.
        It is the pathetic quality of Indian movie and TV entertainment that should worry us.

        • 1
          1

          S.J,
          You mean cable networks or Dialog? I suppose in that case people deserve what they pay for.

      • 5
        1

        old codger

        SJ types:

        “It is the pathetic quality of Indian movie and TV entertainment that should worry us.”

        Let us watch Chinese or North Korean channels.

        • 1
          1

          Native,
          There is plenty of good Indian stuff on Netflix. But you have to pay for it.

  • 15
    1

    If you believe that government-issued currency is going to collapse and the entire financial and monetary system will soon go through a massive change, then agriculture and farming are some of the best ways to survive and prosper.

  • 16
    1

    ……Two years later, the promised utopia is in shambles…..
    And it has come to this. When Dr.R.Pathirana (of course he is in fact a medical doctor unlike the fakes).. in today’s DM front page :
    Dr RP : Plantations Minister and Govt Spokesman said, “the govt’s decision to import Nano N Liq Fert and Sulph of Ammonia was NOT a deviation of govt policy… BUT giving ear to the demands of farmers.”
    Absolute top example of “equivocation” at its best ( or worst in level). Why they did not discuss farmers problems with farmers instead of a wayward ‘priest’ of sorts and discredited virtual psychopath doctor, beats me.

  • 7
    0

    No body who is in this government will act ,vote or leave this government.Every body who is not in the cabinet like SB AND DILAN trying to please GOTHYA at least to get a state minister position.90%of muslim MP,S are in the pocket of BASILAYA.THE SO CALLED LEADERS FROM THE OPPOSITE SIDE EVERY BODY LIKE SAJIT-CHMPIKA-RAJITHA-PONSEKA IS DREAMING TO BECOME PRESIDENT OR PRIME MINISTER AND WORKING UNDER HAND TO CUT EACH OTHERS CHANGES.
    ONLY OTHER GOOD ALTERNATIVE CHOICE IS KARU JAYSURIYA.BUT MR.HEMADASA WILL NEVER AGREE TO THIS-JAYAWEEWA.

  • 6
    17

    “That was the deal 6.9million Lankan voters made with the Rajapaksas almost two years ago – a utopia for the majority community built on the subjugation of minorities.”
    —-
    BS! What subjugation of minorities?
    6.9 million voters made a deal with Rajapakshes to provide them security and peace. After eliminating Tamil terrorists who terrorized the country for three decades by Rajapakshes, people in this country had peace in mind but ‘Yahapalana’ dong keys ruined that by allowing Muslim terrorists to go ahead with terrorist attacks while they had information about the attacks. More than anything else, people wanted security and peace.

    • 1
      0

      Part I
      EE,
      “6.9 million voters made a deal with Rajapakshes to provide them security and peace.”
      Well and truly they did and they specifically excluded a thing called ‘FOOD SECURITY’!
      That’s understandable too, because, the valiant Leader must show his ability in mastering and trail blazing in anything he does, so he could embark on ‘Organics’, so as to enshrine in history his invincibility and pronounced innovation and leadership!!
      That process has hit a bottleneck as the Chinese version has a more potent devil than the Wuhan Virus (WV). I did not want to mention “Wee Wee”, but that’s what it is.
      So we have gone to take shelter behind the Nan’s Skirt or ‘Night Gown’ – NANO.

    • 1
      0

      Part II
      We are with NANO stuff, which the governance chorus is Organic and the others of Academia call it Inorganic and to boot not fit to be placed in the paddy field from the start, but only after 2 weeks of sprouting and billions of Rupees expenses per annum!!!
      Who cares, it is public money and their own and does not hurt their purse. MB’s are fuelled!!
      6.9 million are laughing and crying at the sorry state of affairs, but not publicly as they feel ashamed at the letdown, but show a great smiley face, so that no gunfire commences.
      Local agents for the dairy farm industry of India are laughing their Guts out to the Bank!!!
      When it hits the stomach in 6 months’ time, the story may be entirely different
      Gujarat farmers are elated that mini SL, the tear drop at the bottom,close to Rameswaram has embraced their own NAN!!!!

    • 1
      0

      EE,
      I forgot to add in my contribution/comment on ‘Food Security’ issue that 6.9 million forgot that,
      1. The senior most academia of the University of Peradeniya (UoP), specializing in soil science, nutrition and nitrogen enrichment for Rice Paddy cultivation, involved in 6 advisory committees of Ministry of Agriculture (MoA), presumably, suspect contra advise on use of Gujarat NAN’s NANO Fertiliser (remember made organic for realization of proclaimed ORGANIC dawn in SL), which arrived by Dandumonara!
      2. By whom, the exalted Minister of Agriculture of SL, by directive to the Secretary.
      3. I am sure the Minister was unable to comprehend the contents of the highly erudite professor, was ‘over the top’ for those not exposed to Chemistry in School.
      4. May be that may not be easy and the individual concerned, is very erudite and hails from a family of Agriculture and farming technology specialists.
      5. So are we on the mark and on course to destroy Agriculture and Rice production in the country – our staple food!!!
      6. How many SL governments since independence have been ground to dust because of RICE and is this in the offing and soon to be a realization. Time will tell!

  • 5
    15

    TG has forgotten how ‘Yahapalana’ Government ruined the economy during their rule.
    Before 2015 election, Harsha de Silva bragged that they know how to fix the economy, how to make State Owned Enterprises profitable by adopting a model from Singapore and bring foreign investments. But ‘Yahapalana’ Government failed to do any of these things. From day one, the GDP growth went down. ‘Yahapalana’ Government borrowed more money than Rajapakshe regime increasing the debt burden but no output. ‘Jadapalana’ Government allowed to import every damn thing draining foreign currency out from Sri Lanka. They crashed tourism by allowing Muslim terrorists to carry out terrorist attacks and finally they handed over an almost empty treasury.
    In short, ‘Yahapalana’? Government is greatly responsible for ruining the economy. The situation got worse due to COVID-19 pandemic.

    • 3
      2

      Eagle,
      “TG has forgotten how ‘Yahapalana’ Government ruined the economy during their rule.”
      Really? Sugar for 90 Vs 120 now? Gas for 1400 Vs 2800 now? Rice for 70? Flour for 65? Petrol for 117? Cheap parippu, turmeric, vegetables.
      How the devil would you know, you don’t even live here.

    • 1
      1

      HI EE,
      It seems that you have attempted response too early in the morning!
      “TG has forgotten how ‘Yahapalana’ Government ruined the economy during their rule.”
      What is this? You may call it memory loss or amnesia or both! Or seriously it cannot be senile decay!!
      Come on, you can do a better analysis than that, even if it’s a process of paid advertising effort on superior governance ability by Pohottuwa regime, I am sure you could do better in expressing more logically.
      This one smells a RAT or Bandicoot!!!
      Oh, now I understand, you are comparing the prices of consumer spending in Si Lanka with that of Canada/Australia by converting to SL Rupees!!

  • 11
    3

    This is indeed great writing; insightful and goading us onto face the stark and dark reality of our nation.
    I wonder what impact, even hard hitting articles like this, have on the intended audience.

    “That was the deal 6.9million Lankan voters made with the Rajapaksas almost two years ago – a utopia for the majority community built on the subjugation of minorities. The deal was made not in ignorance, but in knowledge.”

    And so what strategies and intelligent thinking does the opposition possess to sway the thinking of the 6.9? The UNP breakaway group that paved the way for the current leadership to come into power is proving itself to weaken by the day. There is no vision for the development of the country but a continuing empty and craving call to hand over power to them.
    We pray for an emerging new leadership to take the nation forward; a nation united in the richness of its diversity, respecting every citizen on an equal stand and respecting the environment; a service oriented leader with intelligence empowered by a a humane and compassionate heart.

  • 6
    9

    Autor says:
    “The Chinese Embassy issued a not-so-veiled threat, stating that a rejection of the fertiliser could affect relations between two countries.”
    The relevant part of the Chinese Embassy’s statement:
    “Therefore, the Embassy hopes that the related parties in Sri Lankan side and the Chinese company could coordinate on the principles of respecting science and facts and the spirit of contract with the view to resolving this issue promptly, and address differences through dialogue in good faith for the mutual benefits of the China-Sri Lanka cooperation.”
    Can the author please identify where the veiled threat is?
    Compare this with India’s reaction to the properly processed tender bid for the energy project in the North that went to a Chinese company.
    *
    “The fact that Colombo is buying fertiliser from India must be infuriating and alarming Beijing in equal measure. “
    Has China expressed any resentment so far?
    *
    Any old stick will do for seasoned China-bashers. So I will waste no more time on this.
    *
    The analogy with Lebanon is rather amusing; “Lebanon’s road to perdition sounds strangely familiar. It was cursed with a corrupt and sectarian leadership which acted in a bubble, refusing to see the unravelling of the economy and the suffering of the people.”
    Does the author have the foggiest idea of the crisis of Lebanon which has more to do with US-Israel meddling in the region for 70 years.

    • 3
      1

      chiv

      Don’t blame SJ as he is used to selective reading, he sees no evil, hears no evil, speaks no evil of China.

      People should age gracefully.

  • 8
    2

    SJ,
    Can you please explain why the Chinese Embassy need to issue a statement instead of negotiating with the related parties? What do you mean by resolving the issue? What is the issue? What is the relationship between fertiliser issue and “mutual benefits of the China-Sri Lanka Cooperation?
    Isn’t it a threat?

    • 4
      1

      Ajith, SJ should explain why China sent it’s sewage fresh and hot,hot to Lanka as fertilizer , in the first place. When confronted and rejected, had the audacity to tell “respect Chinese Science ???”. May be SJ knows more abut Chinese Science than you and me. SJ, seems to accept anything from China (with love) with folded hands.

      • 5
        1

        chiv

        SJ types:

        “Any government will complain if its interests are hurt. China has done nothing unusual. “

        Here we go again.
        China could do no wrong.

        I would not say SJ is the master of double standards.

    • 1
      4

      Any government will complain if its interests are hurt. China has done nothing unusual. That statement is a polite request for a review if you read carefully. (If you want to know who threatens and bullies countries you have to look elsewhere.)
      You are free to imagine a threat in anything.
      “verundavan kannukku irundathellam pey”
      That goes for other victims of Sinophobia here.

  • 2
    1

    chiv

    Don’t blame SJ as he is used to selective reading, he sees no evil, hears no evil, speaks no evil of China.

    People should age gracefully.

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