The joint opposition is fast sliding to extinction
Posted on January 4th, 2015

Dr. Kamal Wickremesinghe

No one has ever accused Mangala Samaraweera of possessing appreciable amounts of common sense, decency or political integrity. His attempt to explain Chandrika Kumaratunga’s calling the murderous terrorist Pirapakaran Mr Prabhakaran” – as demonstrating her Sinhala Buddhist upbringing – however, was a low act even by his own standards.

In the attempt, Samaraweera looked like a spoof of Charlie Chaplin, just landed on his head awkwardly, trying to get back on his feet, straightening the derby hat and fixing the tie as if nothing happened. The bad comedy act added to Chandrika’s own, more ridiculous, regrets over the government politicians lacking the capacity to appreciate subtle nuances” of English expression!

No matter which way one looks at it, Chandrika’s totally undeserving use of the honorific in reference to Pirapakaran will go down as the ‘fatal’ indiscretion that sucked-out any remaining breath off a dying electoral challenge” to President Rajapaksa. The gaffe also showed that the nerve that connects Chandrika’s tongue to the brain has ceased to function under the pressure of hatred she is harbouring towards the president.

President Mahinda Rajapaksa

On a more serious note, Chandrika’s gaffe embodied the untenability of a joint opposition made up of disparate elements representing interests as different as chalk from cheese, united only by common hatred towards President Rajapaksa. Her calling Pirapakaran ‘that’ was clearly a dishonest attempt to please the many LTTE left over elements in Jaffna. It was just that she lacked judgement – typical of the lady – to consider its consequences down South. The people elsewhere in the country have now heard, and seen, the duplicitous nature of a scorned old lady, and have come to their own conclusions.

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The gaffe in Jaffna is just one symptom of the joint opposition’s common” candidate project that is showing all the signs of a bad idea, gone horribly wrong in execution: People are showing no emotional involvement with the candidate or the issues” he purports to be bedevilling the country. The ‘grand strategy’ of the campaign has failed due to the failure of the constituent parts including the candidate, his support crew and their union with the separatist minority elements, just to remove a leader who has not catered to their whims.

The root problem lies in the campaign plot hatched by the US-American-Canadian and Norwegian embassies. Their hair-brained expectations of transferring the Western experience of the use of emotional appeal” to instil enthusiasm and hopefulness about their candidate among the people have failed to materialise. The campaign seeking to raise fear and anxiety about the president through lies of dictatorship and rampant corruption has wilted. The failure shows that the neocon-run foreign spy organisations from MI6 to CIA are not as intelligent” as we are made to believe.

The foreign advisers and the local political bankrupts (principally Chandrika Kumaratunga and Ranil Wickremesinghe) have made the greatest strategic mistake in discounting the Sri Lankan voters’ innate ability to process political information to make informed political choices. The Sri Lankan people have demonstrated, including against the 2010 conspiracy, that they are adept at not being influenced by deceptive propaganda. The Opposition’ insulting misjudgement about the Sri Lankan electorate as lacking political sophistication has come back to bite them in the rear.

Clearly, the neocon conspiracy to achieve regime change by facilitating a union of all disgruntled elements within and outside the government – from Maithripala Sirisena to the TNA – has failed to enthuse the Sri Lankan public. They have become suspicious of the true objectives of the wide range of ‘interest groups’ that have come together, brandishing bogus, intangible issues of democracy, dictatorship and corruption vying for their vote. The conspirators have found it impossible to convince the public who as citizens of the country have not experienced such fictional ‘evil’.

The Sri Lankan people have effectively read the ‘real’ reasons behind the crossovers. It is plain to see that Sirisena and Ranawaka defected to avenge their not receiving the positions they wanted in government. They are aware that Rauf Hakeem and the other Muslim groups crossed over due to the rejection of their demand for a Muslim administrative district by the president: all the sloganeering about democracy and a non-existing dictatorship, and insinuations of rampant corruption has not managed to fool the voter.

The other major calculation of the Opposition to rope in the Tamil and Muslim political party leadership in order to attract the minority vote has backfired ‘big time’. The rationale behind the opposition strategy to pay the TNA and the Muslim groups their respective ‘pounds of flesh’ in the form of separate territories in the North and the East is simply laughable.

The logic behind the unconditional grant of the TNA and Muslim demands has been that Sirisena would be able to poll the required more-than-50% votes by securing over 70% of the minority vote and over 40% of the Sinhala-Buddhist vote. The first problem with the calculation has been that it was based on the votes obtained in the last Uva Provincial Council elections. No attention has been paid to the clearly demonstrable differences in voting habits of the Sri Lankan voter in Provincial and Presidential elections. This oversight has blinded them to the obvious personal rapport President Rajapaksa has with the people – they are now displaying in abundance at election rallies.

A more appropriate comparison would have been with the 2010 Presidential election that would have showed that President Rajapaksa won 58% of the vote against 40% of Sarath Fonseka – a comparatively more formidable opponent. President Rajapaksa also won 16 of the 22 districts with Fonseka only winning the two districts in the Northern Province, three in the Eastern Province, and the Nuwara Eliya District. In short, cornering the minority vote did not deliver the election to Fonseka. Entering into a politically suicidal arrangement with the TNA and the Muslim groups in face of such evidence shows that desperate circumstances dictate desperate measures!

Then the promise to cleanse Sri Lanka of corruption and to bring about Maithri Palanaya”: the promise was still borne with the involvement of Ranil and Chandrika behind Sirisena. Any remaining life in the promise was extinguished by the revelations of Sirisena’s own abuse of fuel vouchers and payments of staff salaries to family members. The business interests of his brothers and the methods they have been adopting made a mockery of Sirisena’s allegations of a Rajapaksa family rule”.

His commandant Rajitha Senaratne was forced to face his own devils on the corruption and good governance front: allegations have been around for quite some time that his Coordinating Secretary owned 60% of the shares in the Blue Ocean Fishery Private Limited that bought eight ships worth Rs 600 million.

Next came the complaint to the Bribery and Corruption Commission by the presidential candidate Anuruddha Polgampola that Rajitha Senaratne misappropriated more than Rs. 100 million through a life jacket deal.

While Senaratne is certainly innocent until proven guilty, such allegations do not bode well for someone pledging anti-corruption and good governance as his reason for existing; such people casting stones at others need to be above suspicion, like Pompeia – the wife of Caesar.

It is such follies, inconsistencies and deceitfulness that has made the opposition campaign a mere joke.

Support keeps coming from the foreign backers of conspiracy

The foreign backers of the conspiracy however, are doing all they can to further the suffering of the local collective of collaborators. The meddling and soon-departing British High Commissioner, John Rankin and the political officer” from the US embassy visit Jaffna as if they have close family in town! They still do not seem to realise that the majority support necessary to win a Presidential election cannot be created by whipping up the minorities. The objective however, is to sustain ethnic divisions long-term, while pretending to promote ‘reconciliation’.

The support for the conspiracy in the British and American corporate media is nothing short of scandalous. From British veterans of colonialism ranging from the BBC to the Economist and American neocon institutions” the Wall Street Journal (WSJ) to the wire services Reuters, AFP and AP have been following the boringly similar fiction that Mahinda Rajapaksa who was supposed to cruise to a third term now has an opponent threatening to put an end to the one-family rule”.

Razeen Sally, an MI6 operative of Sri Lankan Muslim extraction – who has been coordinating the crossovers from Singapore – wrote a typically nonsensical piece titled A Chance to Close Sri Lanka’s One-Family Show” in the WSJ. Reuter’s published pieces written by local correspondents, edited by overseas-based neocon operatives, are typically pushing the line that President Rajapaksa is facing possible defeat. Associated Press reported that a string of defections jeopardising President Rajapaksa’s bid for a third term.

The Economist had a series of items under the running title Last days of the Raj?” – extending the slur to possible” election rigging, but conceding that Mr. Rajapaksa may still be the favourite. The veteran MI6 operative posing as the BBC reporter in Colombo, Charles Haviland, asked the question Is Rajapaksa facing defeat in Sri Lanka elections?” He also bought insurance however, in the final analysis, declaring Mr. Rajapaksa could still win”.

The European Union Heads of Mission in Colombo reminded us the importance of Sri Lanka’s Presidential election process being peaceful, credible and transparent, citing the EU’s longstanding conviction that a peaceful environment is essential for credible elections.

Such desperate and worn-out techniques to help the hopeless case of their collaborators attempting to deliver a regime change on their behalf need to be pitied, while taking precautions against attempts to subvert.

The campaign descends to dirty tricks

In their desperation, the opposition collective launched a massive campaign of dirty tricks while engaging in deceptive propaganda through the many websites they have created. Most such tactics however backfired, exposing the shameless levels they have descended to.

The lie that the star cricketer Kumar Sangakkara declined a request by President Rajapaksa to participate in campaign ads was one of the most disgraceful attempts to deceive the public. Sangakkara however, put the record straight from Christchurch, New Zealand through a Facebook post in his official account, categorically denying that he was ever asked by the President to be part of his political campaign. He requested his fans to ignore such lies.

More recently, they employed a new generation” actress named Samanalee Fonseka to feign massive injuries she received from an alleged attack at a campaign rally at Kurunegala to support Sirisena. A secretly recorded video of her post-production behaviour however, revealed that the neocon operators who are also influential with the Hollywood establishment may soon nominate her for an Oscar! The other new generation actor (who resembles a ninja”) who cried out for a Lamborghini should be sent straight to asylum.

Ven. Maduluwawe Sobhitha Thera who seems to be suffering immensely due to his marginalisation by the collective – together with his idea of abolishing executive presidency in 100 days – emerged to complaint about the president using extracts from the national anthem, and using the national flag for personal use in violation of the Constitution. He threatened an impeachment motion against the president.

Having been exposed to his obviously limited knowledge of the Constitution, as demonstrated through his plans to abolish executive presidency without parliamentary participation or a referendum, hardly anyone took notice of his lamentations.

Then came a dirty tactic straight from the CIA playbook, of trying to create the tail that wags the dog” through a bogus opinion poll. The scam came by way of a purported survey that pointed to a probable” victory for Maithripala Sirisena, released by Sirisena’s office. The research team of two were a senior lecturer attached to the University of Colombo” and an independent policy analyst, currently the director general of the Sri Lanka Tourism Development Authority (SLTDA).

They had obviously tried to gauge the sentiment among Sinhala Buddhist, on someone’s behalf, employing an extremely reckless methodology relating to sample selection. They concluded, most unprofessionally that the survey showed 53% probability of victory for Maithripala Sirisena.

The publicity however, appeared to have frightened the team” to later issue a statement alleging that their report was being used out of context. They also denied any formal involvement of the University of Colombo or SLTDA.

The disgraceful attempt also prompted the Registrar of the University of Colombo to categorically state that the survey has been conducted by a certain individual without the knowledge of the University and as such the University cannot take any responsibility for the outcome of the survey”

Such disgraceful attempts to manufacture consent” however, are typical of CIA sponsored regime change operations in the developing world, and the Sri Lankan people will assure their failure in Sri Lanka.

Kelaniya University survey provides a more accurate prediction

Meanwhile, a survey conducted by the team at the University of Kelaniya – led by Dr Rohana Lakshman Piyadasa, Head of the Dept. of Mass Communication Unit at the Kelaniya University – who also predicted the 2010 election accurately, forecast President Rajapaksa winning 53 % of the vote, with Sirisena polling 44% of votes while 3% of voters undecided.

The forecast in this methodologically sound survey, though conservative, points in the general direction of the result on the 8th. The abandonment of Sirisena by the rank and file of the UNP across the country – as distinct from 2010 embrace of Fonseka by them – will ensure a bigger vote for President Rajapaksa on the 8th.

The UNP, wallowing without leadership or direction, in the meantime, has issued a press release requesting the people dare to dream”. The terrible mistake of teaming up with Sirisena will leave them with no other option but to dream their way in to political oblivion.

– See more at: http://www.dailynews.lk/?q=features/joint-opposition-fast-sliding-extinction#sthash.h059MdZG.dpuf

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