What is Sri Lanka’s crime to deserve all the threats and accusations by the rich and the powerful?
Posted on February 17th, 2012

Asada M Erpini

The latest salvo that has been directed at Sri Lanka is from the US Assistant Secretary of State for South and Central Asian Affairs “”…” no stranger to seeing evidence of Human rights violations under every bush in the island – and the State Department’s Undersecretary for Civilian Security, Democracy, and Human Rights. The duo during their 12-14 February visit to Sri Lanka granted an audience to the representatives of the Tamil National Alliance almost as soon as they received their diplomatic clearance to get into the country, met a few other Sri Lankans, as it were, in passing, and, as one would have expected, proclaimed that the US will support a resolution against Sri Lanka that is to be tabled at the UN Human Rights Council later this February.

 On 13 February, the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, who seems to perceive human rights violations as the hallmark of Sri Lanka, and, for that matter, as if no other country in the world has been guilty or even been accused of such crimes, expressed her concern as regards the appointment of Major General Shavendra Silva to a UN advisory panel. In plain, non-diplomatic speak, the lady originating in South Africa was saying that Major General Silva, who played a pre-eminent role in the liberation war of Sri Lanka 2009 through his command of the 58th Division of the Sri Lanka Army, bringing back peace to the country, is not fit for the UN post for which he has been selected.

 Of late, Canada has been in the forefront of the affluent Western countries braying for Sri Lanka’s blood on alleged human rights violations – during the final phases of the war against the LTTE. Canada’s Prime Minister and its Foreign Affairs Minister obviously are spending sleepless nights on the “ƒ”¹…”crimes’ committed by the armed forces of Sri Lanka. The Prime Minister of Canada has been reported previously as being steadfast in his decision to boycott the Commonwealth Summit scheduled to be held in 2013 in Colombo, demanding inquires into Sri Lanka’s war crimes at international forums. The Foreign Affairs Minister of Canada had issued an additional statement some time back saying, “We have seen a lack of both accountability and meaningful attempts at reconciliation.”

 A motion by the Australian Greens “”…” Australian who? “”…” to move the Australian Senate to being a motion to suspend Sri Lanka from the Commonwealth was debated in September 2011 and a second motion was defeated on 9 February 2012.

 Thus, the list of the countries for which human rights and acting against the violators is of prime concern goes on and on, with Sri Lanka ranking at the very top of the guilty as far as they are concerned.

 Then of course are the archetype human rights defenders for whom the field of human rights is their raison d’etre. Amnesty International, Human Rights Watch, and the International Crisis Group, buttressed by the support received from a motley bunch of associations, societies and forums based in various geographical settings, are forever hunting for human rights violators, in Sri Lanka.

 The “ƒ”¹…”crime’ that Sri Lanka committed, at least in the eyes of the rest of the civilised world, was going full throttle to destroy a ruthless band of terrorists that killed nearly one hundred thousand civilians that included a President,  a Prime Minister, Cabinet ministers, and officials at various levels and most heinously of all, poor cultivators trying their best to eke out a living from unforgiving and barren lands and innocent schoolchildren who were never given the opportunity to realise any of their cherished dreams.

 Wars are dirty, even if one may show the reasons why the overall goal of any war is justifiable. It is a sad fact that civilians who are trapped or forced to stay in the battle zone as human shields will get killed. Although the West, especially the US, wants the poor countries to marvel at the surgical strikes that they have used to get rid of their enemies in Iraq, Afghanistan, Pakistan and Libya, the number of innocents killed in their bombing raids would total up to millions. Prior to that, in the last stages of World War II, the Allied Forces headed by the US bombed Hiroshima and Nagasaki in Japan and cities such as Dresden in Germany, destroying everything, living as well as non-living, with no concern whatsoever for the non-combatant civilians.

 Instead of focusing on the civilians killed in the last stages of the war “”…” the sanctimonious phase of the war as far as the West is concerned, the human rights defenders should accept that the men and women in uniform released the nearly 300,000 Tamil civilians who had been kept as human shields by the LTTE, in the process over 6000 of their colleagues sacrificing their lives. The live broadcasts that were beamed from the Mulaitivu and Nandikadal areas by the military administration, which showed the Tamil civilians running towards the arms of the soldiers for deliverance, while the LTTE shot at those fleeing, are ample testimony to the stance adopted by the armed forces and to disprove the myth that Sri Lanka was hell bent on destroying civilians or that it is guilty of genocide.

 Justice and fair play should be the norm of the civilised world. The so-called developed countries should show they are developed in morals and ethics and possess the ability and willingness not to be swayed by lies propagated by interested parties. Instead of endeavouring to haul the political leadership and military administration of Sri Lanka before the International Court of Justice or UN Human Rights Council, their energies will be better spent if they seriously think of nominating the President of Sri Lanka and his military leadership, headed by the Minister of Defence, for the Nobel Peace Prize. The proposition is not such a preposterous idea as it may seem at casual glance. After a period that spanned nearly three decades when people ventured out in trepidation in fear of being blown into smithereens by a terrorist bomb, Sri Lankans today enjoy peace, although many day-to-day problems may abound. After all, the President of the US was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 2009, for “his extraordinary efforts to strengthen international diplomacy and cooperation between peoples. Interestingly, the nominations had to be postmarked by 1 February, within twelve days of Mr. Obama taking office. The whole world knows today that the peoples in Iraq and Afghanistan, with those in Libya getting dragged in later on, are at the receiving end of the results of the extraordinary efforts of the Commander-in-Chief of the mighty US and are living in enviable “ƒ”¹…”peace’, thanks to his directives and the military interventions of his armed forces in foreign lands.

 There may be many in Sri Lanka and in the world outside who may not be pleased with the manner in which Sri Lanka is being administered at present by its political hierarchy. But it is an undeniable fact that the country has had an explosion-free period of peace nearing three years since its armed forces annihilated the LTTE leader and his deputies in May 2009, allowing the average civilian to go about attending to his regular business.

 Asada M Erpini

4 Responses to “What is Sri Lanka’s crime to deserve all the threats and accusations by the rich and the powerful?”

  1. desh Says:

    They are not attacking Sri Lanka, but the Rajapaksha family.

  2. aravinda Says:

    In Western eyes, Sri Lanka done a great crime. It saved itself from destruction. Their plan for Sri Lanka, to send in the same path as Afghanistan, Vietnam, Kampuchea, Laos, Pakistan and many other Asian nations failed here. All plans hatched to destroy Sri Lanka failed. Europe and USA made hard yards here. All that time in planning, mollycoddling, supporting in diplomatic front and arming LTTE /TNA failed to pay dividends. Our own “Publius Horatius Cocles”, Gotabaya Rajapaksa stood in the path, That is the crime of Sri Lanka!

    Now TNA, the new face of LTTE is taking another path, to destroy Sri Lanka by all other means other than armed struggle. TNA will suck up to all Western nations, promise them every harbour, city and woman to gain this pie-in-sky called Eelam.

  3. nandimitra Says:

    The west is using the war crimes agenda to completey dominate and subjugate sri lanka. They are succeeding the IMF recommendations are now accepted. A country run on loans and debt has no rights. The crime Sri Lanka has done is that it has allowed the politicians to borrow money in their name which has been used for non productive investments because of corruption. It has also allowed the politicians to be non accountable. Rogues have been made barons . Sri Lankans must demand proper governance from the ruling class , They cannot be allowed to run away with this idea that they can manipulate every rule in book and exploit the country and go into quiet retirement and allow their pro deny to continue the exploitation.

  4. Christie Says:

    “What is Sri Lanka’s crime to deserve all the threats and accusations by the rich and the powerful?”

    Who are behind these poweful?

    US, Canada nd Australia have governments with Socialist agendas. Take Obama his Democrats receive millions and millions from Non Resident Indians and Persons of Indian Origin. Then there are a lot of Indian colonial parsites who have gone from Indian colonies.

    How much did Raj Rajaratnam gave Democrats?

    The same applies to Canada and Australia and EU countries.

    It is India and people of Indian extraction that are behind the so called West.

    We have to understand that. Readers might think I am mad but facts are facts.

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