House of Lords: The Rt Hon Lord Michael Naseby spoke in the Queen’s Speech Debate on Wednesday May 19, 2021 …. [with highlighting emphais here being the work of The Editor, Thuppahi]
My Lords, I welcome the gracious Speech. My comments will be on global Britain, specifically the Indo-Pacific tilt. My own background is that I have lived and worked in India, Pakistan and Sri Lanka, and I know the rest of ASEAN quite well. I will specifically address Sri Lanka, and I declare an interest as joint chair of the All-Party Group (on Sri Lanka).
Tissa Vitarana, in Island, 29 July 2020, where the title runs “TNA has failed to come up with a realistic plan to address problems of the North-East people”
The Tamil National Alliance (TNA) has come out with its manifesto for the August 5 general election, and it is disheartening to see that the TNA has failed to come to grips with the new reality and introduce a realistic plan to address the problems facing the people of the North and the East, says LSSP leader, Professor Tissa Vitarana,
Prof. Vitarana has said in a media statement: “They have come out with the same set of demands that were raised by the TNA at the time the 30 year war of separation began. A news report of July 19 labeled it as a “low key event”, a clear indication of the lack of enthusiasm among the Tamil people.
Thank you for affording me the privilege of being able to reinforce for the 11th consecutive year, our deep debt of gratitude to the Ranaviru for having liberated Sri Lanka from three decades of Tiger terror and even more for the life and limb that some lost in the process.
The human rights lobby in UK (hereafter HR) has the International Crisis Group, Chatham House and the Sri Lanka Campaign for Peace & Justice serving among the spearheads of the campaign for a political transformation of Sri Lanka – a campaign that is in line with USA’s interests and is linked to the interventions of the United Nations HR industry involving Navy Pillai,Prince Zeid Raad Zeid Al-Hassan, the UNHCR headquarters in Geneva and its cohort of officials (usually American or British personnel).
Rajeewa Jayaweera, in Island, 23 March 2019, with this title “Mangala’s rebuttal of Mahinda’s critique: some comments”
Finance Minister Mangala Samaraweera, in a scathing attack, has condemned former President and current Leader of Opposition Mahinda Rajapaksa (MR) for challenging the Wickremesinghe government’s decision to co-sponsor the rollover of UNHRC Resolutions 30/1 and 34/1 for a further two-year period.
Rajeewa vs Mangala
The role of the Leader of Opposition and the main Opposition party in any democracy is to question the government of the day on their policies and hold them accountable to the public. The Leader of Opposition is also a sort of Prime Minister in waiting. Perhaps Mangala has forgotten this salient feature in parliamentary democracy. The Tamil National Alliance (TNA) appointed as the main opposition party in parliament by the Yahapalana government in September 2015 made itself an appendage of the government and focused only on the welfare of its community. Under the circumstances, it is understandable that Mangala and many others have forgotten the role of the Leader of Opposition in a parliamentary democracy. Continue reading →
Rajiva Wijesinha,courtesy of The Island, 8 June 2018, where the title is“Sir Desmond de Silva passes away” … with highlights being the intervention of The Editor, Thuppahi
The death of Sir Desmond de Silva last week is a tragedy for Sri Lanka. But what is perhaps more tragic is that none of our decision makers can understand the blow we have suffered. Sir Desmond came into the picture very late in the day. The last government completely ignored both the commitments it had entered into freely, to deal with accountability issues, and also the mounting dangers of international criticism. It started indeed by immediately throwing away its best defence against such criticism, by dismissing Dayan Jayatilleka from the position of our Permanent Representative in Geneva.
Lasanda Kurukulasuriya, in Daily Mirror, 21 May 2018,with the title reading as War crimes charges Sri Lanka Army takes battle to propaganda front” …. while the highlighting emphsis here is the work of THe Editor, Thuppahi
Sri Lankan armed forces have not been in the habit of talking about themselves, even during the 30-year war, or after, when sinister allegations of misconduct were (and still are) levelled against them. Army Commander Lt. Gen. Mahesh Senanayake’s recent forthright media interaction with Colombo-based foreign correspondents therefore came as an eye-opener about the activities, outlook, military culture and future plans of the Sri Lanka Army (SLA). Nine years after proving its professionalism on the battlefield as a victorious army, the SLA, as the country’s biggest reservoir of human resources, is engaged in transforming itself into a peace-time force with a focus on nation building and contributing to world peace, he said. The SLA will also engage in fighting its own case now, with regard to allegations of war crimes. This is one of the tasks mandated to be carried out by the army’s ‘Directorate of Overseas Operations’ that was opened last month.
Neville Ladduwahetty, courtesy of The Island, 8/9th March 2016, where the title is “Addressing Accountability“ … with the highlighting and illustrative images being my editorial impositions. Michael Roberts
The current debate in the country is whether there should or should not be any foreign “participation” in the accountability processes and if there is to be foreign “participation”, to what degree it should be. The uncertainty as to the final outcome of the debate has caused the Security Forces to be understandably apprehensive. However, what needs to be appreciated is that accountability is only one facet of the entire reconciliation process.
Issues such as the closure on missing persons, reparations, reconstruction and rehabilitation have a far greater impact on reconciliation than accountability. This is particularly so because the focus on accountability would primarily be on the period from January to May 2009, since the strategies adopted by the Security Forces in the conduct of the separatist Armed Conflict prior to this period were acknowledged by the US in a cable that stated: “The Government has gained considerable credit until this point for conducting a disciplined military campaign” (Cable to the US State Department by the US Embassy, WikiLeaks, 27 January, 2009).
The government of Sri Lanka’s conduct of Eelam IV from 2006-09 was not without its inefficiencies, especially on the propaganda front. But no less a person than retired SAS officer JT Holmes has stated clearly that the SL Army faced “an entirely unique situation” and took tactical options that were “stark,” but “justifiable and proportionate” in those circumstances. While I aware of the important role performed by the SL Air Force and SL Navy in support of the war effort, and the value of UAV’s in the battlefield situation, Gotabaya Rajapaksa sprang a surprise when, more or less in passing, he indicated that the SL military had listened in on the radio-tel communications between Selvarāsa Pathmanathan (KP to the world) and the LTTE command in Sri Lanka.
KP next to Prabha & Madhivadhani as bestman at the latter’s wedding in Tamilnadu,circa 1984Continue reading →
Thuppahi's Blog · This web site presents the interventions of MICHAEL ROBERTS in the public realm with reference to Sri Lankan political affairs. It will embrace the politics of cricket as well. ROBERTS was educated at St. Aloysius College in Galle and the universities of Peradeniya and Oxford. He taught History at Peradeniya University and Anthropology at Adelaide university. He is now retired and lives in Adelaide.