Category Archives: women in ethnic conflcits

Remembering Manouri Muttetuwegama nee De Silva

ONE REQUEIM from Gamini Seneviratne , in The Island, 25 July 2021  v

In the early nineteen sixties when we met, politics here was in a kind of crisis. The Left parties were defining themselves and each other in terms that emasculated such terms as ‘socialist’ of the meanings assigned to them not just in the literature but in the practice of revolution. We had sama samaja ‘new’ or without qualification, united socialist, revolutionary socialist, Bolshevik Leninist, Stalinist aka Communist, Trotskyite, Maoist and, lurking not far behind them every nuance of Democracy and Socialism. In hindsight all that seems innocent given the skulduggery that came to be sort of enshrined in a “Constitution” that enjoyed the distinction of being totally unconstitutional / illegal. So much more has been done since that J R J, the breaker of laws and trasher of justice would be chortling in whatever shades he now resides.

Continue reading

Leave a comment

Filed under accountability, democratic measures, governance, heritage, legal issues, life stories, performance, politIcal discourse, press freedom, social justice, sri lankan society, the imaginary and the real, tolerance, unusual people, women in ethnic conflcits, working class conditions, world events & processes

Dr Susiri Weerasekera: A Sturdy Servant of Humankind

Michael Roberts

In dealing today with the outrageous prejudices displayed by the American political analyst Robert Kaplan in mid-2009, I realised that I should reaffirm the essays devoted to the services to mankind provided by a doctor indomitable and discerning.[1] That medico was Dr. Susiri Weerasekera, who, alas, had deteriorated to a state non compos mentis when I made inquiries at his home in Nugegoda a few years back.

Susiri [with tie] is standing on the extreme left from the viewer’s eyes — this Pix being the Board of Management of the Friend-in-Need Society

Susiri Weerasekera was a person you would want to have alongside you in adversity: a person pragmatic, observant, down-to-earth and relatively unprejudiced. I got to know him when I dropped in on the Friend-in-Need Society in Colombo in 2010 to look into their work in support of the disabled and their speciality in assisting personnel who had lost a limb to obtain and then utilize a prosthetic leg.[2] When I embarked on journeys to the northern reaches Susiri provided me with names and introductions to key personnel in Vavuniya and Jaffna as well as an introduction to Dr Hemantha Herath who was in charge of medical relief for the IDP camps. These recommendations were invaluable.

Continue reading

Leave a comment

Filed under centre-periphery relations, charitable outreach, communal relations, democratic measures, disaster relief team, education, ethnicity, governance, historical interpretation, IDP camps, landscape wondrous, life stories, LTTE, medical marvels, reconciliation, self-reflexivity, sri lankan society, Tamil civilians, Tamil Tiger fighters, the imaginary and the real, tolerance, truth as casualty of war, unusual people, war reportage, welfare & philanthophy, women in ethnic conflcits, world events & processes

High Noon in Mid-Air, August 2019: For the Murugappans of Biloela

ABC Account on 30 August 2019, with this title “Who are the Tamil family from Biloela and why are they being deported?” ……  https://www.abc.net.au/news/2019-08-30/who-are-tamil-family-from-biloela-why-are-they-being-deported/11463276

Last-minute injunctions have stalled the deportation of a Tamil family who have spent years fighting to stay in Australia. The plane carrying the Sri Lankan couple and their Australian-born daughters had already left the tarmac at Melbourne Airport when a judge granted a reprieve over the phone. Here’s what we know about the family’s case:

Dozens of people rushed to Melbourne Airport in a bid to stop the family being deported on Thursday night..   … Supplied: @HometoBilo)

Continue reading

Leave a comment

Filed under accountability, asylum-seekers, Australian culture, australian media, centre-periphery relations, charitable outreach, communal relations, democratic measures, discrimination, disparagement, economic processes, ethnicity, governance, historical interpretation, human rights, immigration, landscape wondrous, legal issues, life stories, meditations, performance, political demonstrations, politIcal discourse, security, self-reflexivity, Sinhala-Tamil Relations, slanted reportage, social justice, sri lankan society, taking the piss, Tamil civilians, Tamil migration, tamil refugees, tolerance, transport and communications, trauma, travelogue, truth as casualty of war, unusual people, welfare & philanthophy, women in ethnic conflcits, world events & processes

A Searing Wide-Ranging Critique from Qadri Ismail after 21/4 in 2019 ……. Now a Requiem

Qadri Ismail, in Groundviews, 5 May 2019 after the 21/4 Atrocities

Photo by Asanka Brendon Ratnayake for The Washington Post

We hadn’t seen him in years, ever since he left to work abroad. So, on the day of his return, his mother invited the extended family to lunch. As he walked through the door we reacted collectively, gasped audibly. He wore a sharp suit but sported one of those long, unkempt, rowdy beards. Perhaps, I thought, there are no barbers in Saudi Arabia. (You never know, it’s a weird place).

 

Continue reading

Leave a comment

Filed under accountability, arab regimes, atrocities, authoritarian regimes, chauvinism, communal relations, conspiracies, cultural transmission, disparagement, fundamentalism, governance, historical interpretation, Islamic fundamentalism, landscape wondrous, language policies, life stories, martyrdom, Muslims in Lanka, political demonstrations, politIcal discourse, power politics, self-reflexivity, Sinhala-Tamil Relations, sri lankan society, taking the piss, Tamil Tiger fighters, terrorism, the imaginary and the real, trauma, truth as casualty of war, unusual people, vengeance, violence of language, women in ethnic conflcits, world events & processes

Sri Lankan Dissidents: Their Work Commemorated via Their Archives

Fr Tissa Balasuriya

 

VISIT THIS SITE: https://dpul.princeton.edu/sae_sri_lanka_dissidents?fbclid=IwAR0r_CuHdd9OwgkvjStbaGXlscmQ7hwkI1uJRt1uETMLIebFoVq1bPr40vY

This collection documents the activity of a generation of Sri Lankan radical activists who, in their different ways, attempted to escape the claims of rival ethno-nationalisms and build alternative political and development projects, drawing on Marxism, Christian socialism, and feminism, among other inspirations.

Fr Yohan Devananda 

Fr Michael Rodrigo & Fr Paul Caspersz

Continue reading

Leave a comment

Filed under atrocities, communal relations, cultural transmission, education, heritage, historical interpretation, human rights, landscape wondrous, legal issues, life stories, performance, plural society, politIcal discourse, power politics, press freedom & censorship, religiosity, self-reflexivity, Sinhala-Tamil Relations, sri lankan society, the imaginary and the real, tolerance, truth as casualty of war, unusual people, welfare & philanthophy, women in ethnic conflcits, working class conditions, world events & processes

The SBS: Marine Commandos of the Sri Lankan Navy

Michael Roberts

A recent article by Dishan Joseph (see below) has marked the role of a commando outfit known as the SBS, or Special Boat Service, that was developed within the Sri Lankan Navy (SLN) during the Eelam Wars.  The story is complex and demands an elaborate ‘companion piece’ that is attentive to time, combat locations, initiatives and the lessons derived from a remarkable and formidable enemy, namely, the Sea Tigers. In war one becomes like one’s opponent in order to survive. The innovativeness of the LTTE was monumental and its sea-faring capacities were one reason why it outdid-and-outbid the other Tamil militant organisations in the fight to lead the claim for independence for Thamililam during the 1980s/1990s.

Continue reading

2 Comments

Filed under education, Eelam, ethnicity, female empowerment, historical interpretation, insurrections, island economy, landscape wondrous, law of armed conflict, life stories, LTTE, martyrdom, military strategy, modernity & modernization, nationalism, patriotism, performance, politIcal discourse, security, self-reflexivity, sri lankan society, suicide bombing, Tamil Tiger fighters, terrorism, the imaginary and the real, transport and communications, unusual people, war reportage, women in ethnic conflcits, working class conditions, world events & processes

Lord Naseby targets Adele Balasingham …. and Lord Tariq Ahmad

Lord Michael Naseby, in Island, 5 March 2021, where the title is “Lord Naseby asks why Adele not prosecuted in UK for child recruitment”

Lord Naseby President of the UK all party British-Sri Lanka Parliamentary group, has questioned the failure on the part of the UK to prosecute senior LTTE leader Adela Balasingham, wife of the outfit’s late theoretician Anton Balasingham. Lord Naseby said that Adele, who had been involved with the LTTE for several decades, was responsible for recruitment and deployment of child soldiers.

Continue reading

Leave a comment

Filed under accountability, atrocities, centre-periphery relations, discrimination, Eelam, historical interpretation, legal issues, life stories, LTTE, military strategy, politIcal discourse, prabhakaran, self-reflexivity, Sinhala-Tamil Relations, social justice, sri lankan society, Tamil Tiger fighters, war crimes, women in ethnic conflcits

The LANKA COURIER takes off …

https://www.lankacourier.com/

Sri Lanka’s Neutral Foreign Policy

LANKA COURIER   FEB 08, 2021

 The following article has been adapted from the address by the President Gotabaya Rajapaksa in the general debate of the 75th Session of the United…

Features  ….. Foreign Relations of Sri Lanka

Continue reading

Leave a comment

Filed under accountability, centre-periphery relations, citizen journalism, communal relations, cultural transmission, democratic measures, education, electoral structures, female empowerment, foreign policy, governance, heritage, historical interpretation, patriotism, politIcal discourse, power politics, press freedom, propaganda, Rajapaksa regime, reconciliation, security, self-reflexivity, Sinhala-Tamil Relations, Sri Lankan cricket, sri lankan society, Tamil civilians, Tamil migration, the imaginary and the real, tourism, transport and communications, welfare & philanthophy, women in ethnic conflcits, working class conditions, world events & processes

In Appreciation of Malathi de Alwis: Such An Untimely Death

   ONE — A Letter in Sadness from Professor Veena Das to Pradeep Jeganathan, January 2021

First of all, I want to convey my sadness and my gratefulness and to some extent my rage that this has happened and that I will never see that radiant smile and that integrity and brilliance anymore. Any such death at my stage of life makes me angry and sorrowful as to why the young are being taken. The war undid so many of us in so many ways and why would it not do that? So what kind of miracle is it that Malathi let herself be deeply affected by the war but not be undone by it? You must know that I loved her work and her personality just as I love your work and know what struggles you have been through.

Continue reading

Leave a comment

Filed under cultural transmission, education, female empowerment, heritage, historical interpretation, Indian Ocean politics, language policies, Left politics, life stories, literary achievements, politIcal discourse, power politics, self-reflexivity, sri lankan society, tolerance, unusual people, welfare & philanthophy, women in ethnic conflcits, world events & processes

Robert Pape’s Blunders in Tigerland: Pape’s Muddles on ‘Suicide Bombers’ in Sri Lanka

Michael Roberts, reprinting here an article which appeared initially in November 2007  as Working Paper No. 32 November 2007 in the Heidelberg Papers on South Asian PoliticsISSN: 1617-5069 …. edited by Subrata Mitra. Insofar as this essay is being reproduced in 2020, I cannot overstress the point at which it appeared in the public realm — in 2007 well before the LTTE was defeated… [noting that, with the exception of the emblematic Picture at the start, all other illustrations appeared in the Heidelberg publication. These pictorial scenes, I stress now in 2020, are valuable data in themselves].

No study of the LTTE can afford to neglect Sri Lanka’s cultural, historical, and geographical backdrop, The lack of existential awareness of religious cross-fertilisation, the either/or foundations of Western reasoning and the absence of local knowledge bedevil the scholarship that incorporates Sri Lanka within the global surveys of suicide attacks. Pape’s Dying to Win is an example. Here, in Pape’s article, the LTTE’s multi-pronged capacities are poorly evaluated. Too much significance is attributed to the coercive success of SMs in bringing the government to the negotiating table at various moments. Religious persecution has not been the main reason for the Tamil struggle. Comparative references to SMs elsewhere are occasionally interspersed in this review of the Sri Lankan scene.

Continue reading

2 Comments

Filed under accountability, authoritarian regimes, communal relations, cultural transmission, Eelam, ethnicity, fundamentalism, heritage, historical interpretation, Indian Ocean politics, Indian traditions, landscape wondrous, language policies, life stories, LTTE, martyrdom, military strategy, politIcal discourse, power politics, propaganda, religiosity, Saivism, self-reflexivity, Sinhala-Tamil Relations, slanted reportage, social justice, sri lankan society, suicide bombing, Tamil civilians, Tamil Tiger fighters, terrorism, the imaginary and the real, truth as casualty of war, unusual people, women in ethnic conflcits, world events & processes