POLITICAL SYMBOLISM AND INFECTIONS OF THE MIND – PARALLELS BETWEEN PRESIDENT OBAMA AND PRESIDENT MAHINDA RAJAPAKSA
Posted on January 18th, 2015

R. Chandrasoma

The negative things that were done to President Mahinda Rajapaksa, similar things were done to President Obama by those who opposed him.
President Mahinda Rajapaksa inherited a mess of a country in 2005 from CBK/RW. He took the demoralized army and with Col. Gotabaya Rajapaksa refurbished it and defeated the LTTE in 2009. He saved 300,000 TAMIL civilians from LTTE and built them homes and gave them their lives back. Even the LTTE cadre were rehabilitated and allowed to enter society. The West which had been supportive of LTTE right along, started making allegations against MR of War crimes through the UN. The Opposition leader went round the world criticizing MR and his government. MR rebuilt virtually the entire infrastructure of the North and the East and built many high speed roads to facilitate travel in the country. The city of Colombo was cleaned up and became a shining city to be proud of. Yet at the recent election the opposition placed a “meme” in the psyche of the people which spread like a virus and took hold. The meme was that MR was guilty of corruption and family bandyism. The fact was the only person elected by him was Col. Gota as Defense Secretary while all the other members of him family such as Basil, Namal, Chamal etc., contested seats on their own right and won the seats in the Parliament. MR was caught unawares by the “meme” and lost the election. It appears that if people use their reason they should have voted for MR but in fact they voted against him due to the negative emotions caused by the “meme”.
In case of President Obama they launched a “meme” branding him as a Kenyan and a Muslim. This was actually believed by many Americans and even today about 42% believe he is a Muslim, and some say that he is a not an American !   Recently there was a group demonstrating in front of the White House threatening to pull out the traitor while he is kneeling to Allah and hang  him. (See attached).  President Obama as you know inherited a USA on a verge of fiscal collapse in 2008. People were losing jobs at the rate of 800,000 jobs/month. Banks were not giving any credit and the economy was in a frozen state. The Republican Congress blocked every initiative he tried to pass to create jobs and even the jobs bill he tried to do like Franklin Roosevelt to build the crumbling infrastructure (roads, bridges) in USA was blocked. They tried to prevent him from bailing out General Motors, and Chrysler. He did it in the teeth of their opposition and today both GM and Chrysler are healthy and have paid back the bail out money. President Obama managed to pass the Affordable Care Act and also USA has had continuous job creation for the last 55 weeks. The deficit has been reduced by 2/3 and yet the hatred towards him from a section of the population is strange. During the last election for Congress many Democrats tried to disassociate themselves with President Obama. He was not invited to speak on behalf of the Democratic candidates and the net result was Democrats lost heavily. It appears that if people use their reason they should have voted for President Obama’s party, but  in fact they voted emotionally (in doubt about his integrity) due to the “meme” and voted against him and his partly.
The article below explains what happens to people when they are infected with a mental virus or a meme.
http://talkingpointsmemo.com/livewire/tea-partiers-protest-lynch-obama
http://www.island.lk/index.php?page_cat=article-details&page=article-details&code_title=117584

Political symbolism and Infections of the Mind

 

Island January 13, 2015, 12:00 pm

 

A Symbol is something that represents, stands for, or suggests an idea, belief, action, or entity. In the recently concluded presidential election, the defeated candidate – Mahinda Rajapaksa – was viewed in two diametrically different ways by the two major players – the Sinhala Buddhists on the one hand and the Tamils on the other. Let us take the Tamils first. The former President (MR) was viewed symbolically – rather than as a practical achiever – by this ‘chagrined’ community in the North and East. This translates into the fact that a picture was created of MR based not on direct knowledge of his characteristics (and political agenda) but his place in a mythology of collective self-healing. Thus MR is necessarily the Ogre while Prabhakaran is the valiant hero who would have brought glory to the Tamils but for the untimely appearance of this Southern Fighter. How else can we explain the near-total support of the unknown Sirisena in the Tamil areas that has benefited so much from the uncompromising generosity of MR in recompense for the damage done by a war that was not started by him? Demonizing is a large-sale political adaptation in populations troubled by dilemmas that have no clear avenues of resolution. The overwhelming vote for Mr Sirisena is a turning away from a troubling reality that justifies a vote for the unknown. Vulgarly, the expression ‘Hobson’s Choice’ is most apt.
Let us look at the Sinhala-Buddhist voters. A striking fact is that the Anti-MR vote is patchy showing what naturalists call ‘discontinuous distribution’. It is as if a ‘mental virus’ – called a ‘meme’- appears focally and spreads in regions where a ‘pabulum’ or ‘background’ exists for the spread of this invasive idea. The notion of a ‘meme’ or ‘Mental Virus’ was introduced by the famous evolutionary theorist Richard Dawkins to account for the rapid spread across populations of ideas that bring comfort and are easily copied’ but are rarely adaptive. The notion ‘Our troubles are due to the rottenness of the political leadership and the grand larceny of government cronies who rob and cheat shamelessly’ is a meme that spreads rapidly in disgruntled and envious populations. City folk – ranging from taxi drivers to shop assistants. Constables and barbers on the one hand and professors of learning and legal luminaries on the other were infected with the meme or virus that created a raging fever of hostility towards a regime that had done much good and little harm to the citizens of this country. Those infected shout –’they have robbed cheated, swindled, lied and bankrupted the country’. This is the ‘phenotype’ of the meme or mental virus that has ‘invaded’ large populations – nobody has been physically robbed or cheated by the maligned class of rulers but truthfulness is not a characteristic of a meme or mental virus. Its success in changing mental states and infecting others in the course of social interactions are alone significant. That this ‘virus’ had such success betrays an underlying meanness of spirit that fosters envy and hatred of a supposed elite. That some Buddhist monks were ‘leaders’ of a hate-campaign against a supposed evil leadership is a matter that must dishearten all sincere Buddhists.
Let us cut a long story short – MR was defeated by the successful spread of a mental virus in the Sinhala Periphery that changed a one-time grateful population into a growing horde of bad-mouthed skeptics and accusers. This virus failed to hold successfully in the rural areas but its conquest was sufficient to defeat MR and change the course of Sri Lankan history.

 

26 Responses to “POLITICAL SYMBOLISM AND INFECTIONS OF THE MIND – PARALLELS BETWEEN PRESIDENT OBAMA AND PRESIDENT MAHINDA RAJAPAKSA”

  1. AnuD Says:

    Mr. Chandrasoma:

    What do you think, Mr Mahinda Rajapakse had a duty or a responsibility or had to have courtecy to address those concerns or voters had to accept unequivocally that Mahinda Rajapakse was innocent of all the charges ?

  2. mjaya Says:

    Well said Mr. Chandrasoma your words are worth gold.

    This is now the first political meme to be maliciously spread
    1. The unwinnable war – proven false
    2. War crimes – absolutely bogus no war crimes for the LTTE!
    3. Tamil grievances – absolutely bogus in fact the Tamils had no problem with English being the national language before 1956!
    4. Tamil homeland – absolutely bogus – not even a shred of archaeological evidence.

    Now see what is happening,…. the people who were truly corrupt are now changing sides. The two “dirty silvas” have joined MY3. The person who ruined Sathosa (which MR re-established) is now in a position to ruin it again! The Bandit Queen is now fielding her son who was “ashamed to be Sri Lankan” as a candidate! Corrupt ministers who hoarded millions now hold key ministries under MY3 (so they can hoard millions more!!).

    On the sinister side Maj. Gen. G.A. Chandrasiri was removed as Northern Gov. , Eastern Province is now under the separatist TNA (could have easily been given to Daya Gamage). Gnanakone can freely enter Sri Lanka, C4 is also in SL and with no travel restrictions can freely fabricate anything they want.

    2015 is a repeat of 1815!

  3. mjaya Says:

    It is time to investigate ALL corruption, murders and abuses of power. It should start from 1977 that will bring out a lot of skeletons out of the closet.

    UNP corruption from 1977-1994
    UNP, JVP terrorism 1987-89 (murders by both sides)
    Bandit Queen corruption from 1994-2001
    UNP corruption from 2001-2004
    UPFA-JVP Sandane 2004-2006 (lets see why many of the reservoirs “renovated” by JVP failed during subsequent floods)

  4. LANKAPUTHRA Says:

    Mr. Chandrasoma and AnuD, Your mame theory is good, but I too have a theory that I like readers to investigate. To me the election commissioner is a crook worse than Mervin Silva now accusing Gota and Basil. 1. How can a large crowd cheer MR when he opened the Jaffna Matara Yal Davi train, then, text two months 70% of Killinochchi voters did vote against him? BALLOTT BOX STUFFING? Certainly YES, but proof; that is next to impossible. Why because the ballots that were stuffed has been replaced by new ones with correct names of the voters. On the election day the commissioner’s office in Jaffna had seven unknown persons there, even the Tamil works at peon level and also the Sinhala works noticed these men and they were talking among them selves. When the ballot boxes came in for counting they were identical to real ones. As soon as the counting was over they were replaced by the real ones. The CCTV monitor and the recorder was doctored by very experienced agents. (They were from CANADA, USA AND UK) Tell the Election commissioner to deny this in public! Also the half a million dollars he got was deposited in a Australian bank. Most of his family and relatives live in Australia. Two days before the election Ranil wanted the Election Commissioner to issue an order Stating that Immigration officials MUST NOT HARASS the Election monitors. He immediately issued it. Ranil gave an interview to a Tamil Nadu TV station last week where he says that he has ordered the Army to stay inside their barracks and if they go out not to carry any guns. He also said that same apply to the police. He has given the order to the IGP. He said no one can see no police man in the streets of Colombo. (I live in USA and I do not know whether this is true, I can only go by e-mails floating about). Ranil said that Sri Lanka was a dictatorship before the election but it now a democracy. The TV station interviewer attempted to ask something, but his mentors interrupted. The question was “France UK and USA are democracies but the police carry lethal weapons! Ranil did not answer the question because interviewer was forced to move to the next question. (I live in Florida USA, today (10 AM )at busy shopping mall, in a area called Melbourne, a man shot and killed his ex wife and the man who she was living with. When the police responded they could not open fire because of the crowed. He then shot the two police men (one died other critical injured) then he committed suicide.

  5. AnuD Says:

    Lankaputhra:

    Chandrasoma comparing Obama and Mahinda Rajapakse are comparing and apples and oranges.

    Just before 2005, Every time Mahinda Rajapakse had been for peace with LTTE. Once JHU pushed him to no return state, he had his brother who the ex-army man to save him.

    Chandrasoma does not discuss what Obama did not do. He avoided visiting black americans in the deep south during Kathrina. Even his OBama care did not work for people. Because, he handed over the plan to some companies.

    Mahinda Rajapakse had completely a different plan. Basil, Namal and many of his ministers made his govt very unpopular. Even MR had presiden’ts fund, budget for the president alone and and 75% or 90% of the total budget was shared by him and his brothers. See the humongous projects that does not work Hambanthota, Mattala airport, stadium, mihin air and humongous infra structure projects that served them any more than any one else. they had to be open and accountable. Instead, they became secretive and threatening etc.,

  6. ranjit Says:

    ACHTUNG! ACHTUNG ! Gestapo is coming to search and arrest. Who are these Gestapos? Ravi,Rathanaya, Champika,Avamagalaya and the rest of the cronies from Yahapalanaya. Were they not corrupt? Who gave them the order to search houses and premises? What about the police? Aren’t they doing their duty nowadays? Real joke is all past rogues were appointed as Ministers except few inexperience new guys and they pretend be innocent and act like as if they haven’t done any wrong doing while they were in power in the past.

    Chandrasoma your Golden words has been appreciated by Mjaya and same goes with me. It’s the truth but unfortunately the lies won at the end. I also agree with Lankaputhra about votes rigging because I was surprised the way he lost in the North. We saw how MR was greeted by the Tamils when he visited there during the elections. Even during the war Basil was working in the North.He was the architect of the “UTHURU WASANTHAYA” MR & Basil woke the dead Tamil and gave them life but still those ungrateful people voted MR out. I will not pardon these Tamils and the Indians for what they did to my country in the past and the present. I always prayed for a united Lanka but after this I will fight for my Sinhala country because I do not have a place to call home anywhere in the world except SRI LANKA my homeland. Tamils & Muslims have their ancestors living all over the world and they always wanted to have separate place to live in our Sinhala land and they fought for that although they pretend that they want to live with us in Harmony. They are lying.They never like us that’s why they call by themselves as Tamil & Muslims without calling them as Sri Lankans. If they want to live in Harmony under united Lanka they must support the Sinhala Govt and they should try to live among us and be part of the society without thinking and doing things separately. This is their birth place and they should learn to live same as the Majority live without demanding unnecessary demands which are not good for the unity of Sri Lanka.

    I cannot see any Yahapalanaya in their Palanaya these days except running here and there and harassing people unnecessarily. They all want “REVENGE” from the man who saved us from hell and who brought us PEACE for every single human being to live in our Paradise island. I hope people will realize the blunder they did by voting those Gestapos to power and choose wisely in the coming General election to send good,smart,Educated,Uncorrupted, Professional candidates to the Parliament as our representatives to represent us and solve all the important issues on a fair basis to all of us Sri Lankans.

  7. Christie Says:

    Obama’s administration; unarmed and poor black youths blown off like what the Indian trained, armed, financed, managed, branded Tamil Tigers and the JVP financed by India. Jai Hind

  8. Christie Says:

    Dear Lankaputhra; I have worked with Indians of all sorts and people from all over the world. The Indians will share a meal with you and praise you at work openly. But behind they destroy you. It is my personal experience. Tamils are Indians they attended UPFA meetings and their leaders supported UPFA leaders, when the voted the put the cross for the bird. Most of them were reminded by SMS to vote Sirisena.

  9. Cerberus Says:

    AnuD please note that President Obama was not in power when Katrina happened. It was George Bush who was fiddling when Katrina happened. Affordable Care Act is a huge success. Over 8 million are already enrolled. For the first time these people have medical insurance. The Republicans tried to block it from day one since one of the clauses in it forces insurance companies to give coverage to people who had preexisting conditions and they are also forced to use 80% of their income to provide service to the people who are covered. Earlier the companies used to pay $10-20 million dollar annual bonuses to their CEOs and now they cannot. Actually President Obama wanted a single payer system like Medicare which is very successful. However it was blocked by the Insurance company lobbies who poured money to Republicans to do their bidding and stop it. In USA the media is owned by the corporations who feed the people lies about Obama and the Democrats. Unfortunately the American people are very ignorant and follow the dictates of these media. If you have no idea of the facts it is better not to speak nonsense.

  10. Mr. Bernard Wijeyasingha Says:

    THE ELECTION WAS RIGGED!!!

    The Sirisena coalition won by only 450 thousand votes. it was not Sirisena against Rajapakse but a vast coalition against one man.
    Out of the 15 million voters only 450 thousand made the difference.
    Nations like India to the US wanted Rajapakse out. The turnout of the minority Tamils and Muslims this time was very high. This election was not a landslide victory as in India but a slim margin that can easily be manipulated.
    If Rajapakse actually won this election and due to voter rigging he lost then there are a lot of angry Sinhalese Buddhists who see a great leader being ousted by the same people who want to divide the nation.

  11. Wickrama Says:

    Elsewhere in Lankaweb,

    “Nanda Says:
    January 16th, 2015 at 1:15 pm

    Please submit any details of corruption of any Horapalanaya or ANAYONE to “[email protected]

    This is the time and chance for all patriots get rid or corruption decease from our motherland.”

    I responded,
    “Wickrama Says:
    January 16th, 2015 at 3:35 pm

    Nanda,
    “Please submit any details of corruption of any Horapalanaya or ANAYONE to “[email protected]

    This is the time and chance for all patriots get rid or corruption decease from our motherland.”

    BRILLIANT, BRILLIANT, BRILLIANT !!

    Now let us do it, TOGETHER WITH A COPY here in Lankaweb, so that all of us know, and see if and when actions are taken.

    Note to Lankaweb Editor:
    Could we have a separate place in your website for this?”

    Has any critic of MR done this so far?

  12. dingiri bandara Says:

    The Sinhalese Buddhists who voted for Maithri voted against corruption and and the arrogant behavior of Mahinda’s cronies and the off spring. The Tamils and Muslims voted for Maithri with ulterior motives in mind. Most of the people in powerful positions from 1977 have been very corrupt. I also observe that Mathri has also appointed some people with a very questionable past to important positions. To name two Sajith Premadasa and Ravi Karunanayake. Many of the officers of the armed forces and the police have also not without corruption. Just take a look an their massive houses and businesses. Their children are studying abroad.Where do they get the money?
    There are so many allegations against the siblings of Maithri, they need to be investigated pronto and clear them if they are false. Because they still have power.

  13. Lorenzo Says:

    MR’s relatives in ENDIA conspired against him!

    AS anyone would have guessed, Endia conspired against MR. An Endian RAW agent was in SL plotting against MR. Govt. ALWAYS knew this but MR NEVER took any action in time. YARL DEVI is the best laid ENDIAN plan. It DEPRIVED Sinhala people and made ALL 3 trains from the north TAMIL ONLY. Part financed by bloody Endia!

    MR repeated his disgusting claim Endia is his relative again.

    MR hired Endian Arvind Gupta to run his social media campaign.

    MR allowed all Endian junk, kallathonis to creep into SL.

    MR promised 13 amendment full implementation to Endia.

    This is the end result. OBVIOUS!

  14. Lorenzo Says:

    Millennium City – 2?

    Some foolish anti-SL politician (John Amaratunga?) had directed police to arrest a “floating armoury” off Galle. This is a SL Navy affiliated anti-pirate operation ship MV MAHANUWARA! These are the ships that kept SL waters safe without making a huge cry. This is an act of treason.

    This is DISGRACEFUL.

    Please visit their website the know the TRUTH – “http://avantmaritime.com/”

    UPFA must bring a NO CONFIDENCE MOTION against this loser John Amaratunga NOW. President My3 should immediately look into it.

  15. Mr. Bernard Wijeyasingha Says:

    dingiri Bandara; You say “The Sinhalese Buddhists who voted for Maithri voted against corruption and and the arrogant behavior of Mahinda’s cronies and the off spring”

    That is not how it was reported across the world. the Sri Lankan elections were claimed as a ‘VOTE FOR DEMOCRACY’ NOT A VOTE AGAINST RAJAPAKSE.

    Voting against someone means they are willing to place anyone in that person’s place. what Sri Lanka got was a massive coalition which like the Indian congress party has a good chance of infighting and where the Tamils will use that infighting for their benefit aka Elam and the Muslims will further their doctrine under the banner of minority rights and multiculturalism which has failed in Europe and the US

    IF THE BJP AND RAW ARE BEHIND THIS THEN IT IS FOR THE INTERESTS OF INDIA AND NOT THE INTERESTS OF THE MAJORITY OF SRI LANKA THAT AN OUTSTANDING LEADER LIKE RAJAPAKSE WAS OUSTED. IT WAS THEN NOT FOR DEMOCRACY OR THE ISSUE OF CORRUPTION

    HERE IN THE US THE BJP STANDS FOR SOME THE BL** JOB PARTY AND MAYBE FOR GOOD REASON..

  16. Nanda Says:

    Lorenzo,
    As you said earlier many traitors are on both sides.
    I too suspected Endian raw may be helping Ruinill, but many fools including MR were shouting USA USA.

    Now it is the time of the patriotic forces within the government to spring into action.

  17. Marco Says:

    Courtesy of the FT
    (for the benefit of Sri Lankans starved of information)

    How Sri Lankans Spoke Truth Defiantly to Arrogant Power on Jan 8th 2015

    Sometime around 8 p.m. on 8 January, the Rajapaksa twitter-sphere went deathly still. The next time we heard from them was at 6:30 a.m. the next day, when a spokesman said defeated President Mahinda Rajapaksa had departed from his official residence at Temple Trees.
    The last public tweet on election day by the sons of President Mahinda Rajapaksa was a photograph. It showed Namal Rajapaksa, looking relaxed and casual in a red t-shirt, and his sibling Yoshitha having dinner at Carlton House, Tangalle, the Rajapaksa family home. Earlier that day, as citizens around the country cast their votes in one of Sri Lanka’s most crucial elections, Namal and Yoshitha Rajapaksa celebrated their youngest sibling Rohitha’s first vote with a selfie and took a dip in the ocean.

    The Rajapaksa sons also posed with the Maithripala Sirisena look-alike, a dummy candidate fielded by the Government to confuse voters. The ‘other’ Sirisena chatted amicably with President Rajapaksa as the pair strolled over to the booth to cast their votes at Beliatta. All this was unveiled to the world – on Twitter.

    Over the past few years, the Rajapaksa family had mastered the art of celebrity tweeting. Using verified or authenticated Twitter accounts, President Rajapaksa and his sons made their presence felt online and tirelessly pushed their political agendas.

    Namal Rajapaksa, undisputed king of the Twitter-selfie, often used his account to humanise his privileged family, regularly tweeting pictures of his ‘mallis’ and parents, relaxing at home or participating in wholesome family activities. Namal Rajapaksa was prolific on Twitter. He always seemed confident and magnanimous; just a wholesome ‘every-boy’ with a famous father.

    So the silence on election night was strange and unnerving. Regime mouthpieces, often loud and obnoxious on Twitter, also seemed to have disappeared into the virtual nether.

    Postal vote results for the Ratnapura District were the first to be officially released by the Elections Department at 11:30 p.m. last Friday. But by this time, unofficial results were being reported from counting centres around the island. The trend was clear. Mahinda Rajapaksa was going to lose the postal vote. In the north and east and southern districts favourable to the Opposition, Sirisena was winning big. Mahinda Rajapaksa was still winning the bulk of the southern districts, but here the margins of victory were much narrower. This trend would ultimately emerge even in the national vote, sweeping the Opposition candidate to victory over the incumbent.

    President Rajapaksa returned to Colombo at about 7 p.m. from Tangalle where he cast his vote and retired for a few hours. By the time he resurfaced a few hours later, the Operations Room at Temple Trees was buzzing with the news that the incumbent was probably going to lose the election.

    Living in a bubble

    For most of the election season, President Rajapaksa had lived in a bubble. If his advisors had seen the writing on the wall, they were loath to tell the President, fearing his face would tell the story on the campaign trail.

    Surveys that were giving the Rajapaksa campaign real figures were annoying the President, so the numbers were tweaked to show a marginal victory for the incumbent. Survey firms contracted to conduct the polling had little choice but to project a favourable outcome or lose the remaining payment once they finished the job. UPFA campaign manager Basil Rajapaksa told confidants in the final week before the vote that he believed hope was diminishing that the President would secure a third term.

    The trouble was Mahinda Rajapaksa himself may only have faced this truth when the results started to pour into Temple Trees from the Kachcheris on election night. Political parties have agents inside every counting centre in every district, feeding updates to command centres back in the capital. The UNP Headquarters Sirikotha, also running an ‘Ops Room,’ was receiving the same updates.

    All the trouble started when both command centres in Colombo began to realise around 1 a.m. that the game was up for President Rajapaksa. With less than a third of the count released, it was clear there was no way the incumbent could bridge the leads his challenger was taking in all districts of the North and East, Polonnaruwa, Colombo, Nuwara Eliya and Kandy.

    In some ways, this was the eventuality the regime had been planning for since the Christmas holidays.

    Military build-up?

    Reports that a military build-up was taking place across Colombo, many other ‘battleground’ districts and the vulnerable Northern Province provided glimpses into the regime-thinking. But Army deployment is also routine at major installations and television stations pre-election, when thousands of Police officers usually charged with protecting those places are called away for election duty.

    On 1 January, the Opposition revealed a leaked UPFA campaign document – a blueprint of a plan to put ex-senior military officials in overall charge of electorates in the Colombo District.
    Exclusively revealed in Daily FT on 2 January, the extensive plan contained a preamble, which alleged that President Rajapaksa had put Defence Secretary Gotabaya Rajapaksa in charge of the campaign in the Colombo District. The District was divided into 17 sectors, with each sector supervised by a retired ‘trusted’ senior serviceman. These officers would command operational troops deployed to each electorate. In overall charge was a retired Major General, who also held a top position at the Ceylon Petroleum Corporation. This official would liaise with the Defence Secretary, the document claimed.

    The Opposition campaign ensured the document would reach all diplomatic missions in Colombo and the foreign election monitors on the ground. They also briefed Elections Commissioner Mahinda Deshapriya extensively and provided him with him with copies of the document.

    The second leak

    The second such revelation occurred two days before election day. Standby orders issued by the Chief of Defence Staff – the highest ranked serving officer in the military – on 24 December 2014 indicated a build-up of troops in the north and around vital institutions. Once again, the document was leaked to the Opposition campaign.

    The second document, signed by Gen. Jagath Jayasuriya, also reached the Elections Commissioner and the foreign and local observer groups. An enraged Commissioner told a pre-election press briefing that he had received a complaint about the standby orders and was investigating.

    In election time, the Army can only deploy on the specific request of the Polls Chief, who must first inform the IGP of his need. Needless to say, both Deshapriya and IGP N.K. Illangakoon were completely in the dark about the standby instructions. The ‘top secret’ document was however copied to the Army Commander, the Defence Secretary and President Rajapaksa.

    Suddenly the military was forced to issue denials and play down the orders. Military Spokesman Brigadier Ruwan Wanigasooriya insisted the orders were ‘routine’ at election time, but he could not explain why Elections Commissioner Deshapriya had been in the dark about the mobilisation. The second leak also proved invaluable to ensuring the Opposition camp, the Elections office and the Police were on high alert.

    Ultimately, this was the Rajapaksa campaign’s biggest problem. The regime had sprung leaks everywhere, politically – from the wing run by Basil Rajapaksa and the President himself, to the defence establishment, where Defence Secretary Gotabaya Rajapaksa had been thought to rule with an iron fist.

    One step ahead

    These revelations and the continuing flow of information from within the regime’s inner circles ensured that the Commissioner of Elections and the IGP were constantly one step ahead.

    While unofficial results flowed out of the districts from 7 p.m., IGP Illangakoon hastily summoned a press briefing at 9 p.m. at Police Headquarters. Since the police spokesman had already held a press briefing after polls closed at 4 p.m., this second Police briefing raised eyebrows. IGP Illangakoon maintained that the Police would remain strong, independent and protect the counting centres.

    Now that the events of the night of 8 January are more widely known, questions have arisen as to whether the IGP, by summoning that second late night media briefing, was under pressure and trying hard to get a message across. It is also clear that the IGP and the Elections Commissioner had earned each other’s confidence and were determined to work together. After former Higher Education Minister S.B. Dissanayake walked into the counting centre at D.S. Senanayake College just before midnight claiming to be a polling agent, Commissioner Deshapriya reportedly reinforced security around the perimeter of the counting centre.

    Frantic text messages doing the rounds in Colombo, which pointed to a heightened presence of armed guards at D.S. Senanayake College, may in fact have been the additional STF guard called in by the election authorities to protect the counting centre that night. The Elections Department relies heavily on the elite Police guard or Special Task Force to protect counting centres on election night. STF personnel are armed Policemen with the power to arrest that the military does not command.

    Palace intrigue

    Details about events at Temple Trees in the earliest hours of 9 January remain sketchy. But it was clear that the Rajapaksa administration was scrambling for options, as it realised it could lose its grip on power by dawn.

    The former Defence Secretary, who has proved his credentials as President Rajapaksa’s ‘fixer’ over the past nine years – often with disastrous consequences – stepped up to the plate. The main accounts about the intrigue at Temple Trees indicate that President Rajapaksa, a man who could count over 40 years of political experience, seemed better able to deal with defeat than his family members. In a queer twist, Chief Justice Mohan Peiris also happened to be at Temple Trees on election night. His presence at what was clearly a political campaign office for the night was unorthodox. That he should have been at hand when the attempted coup was allegedly discussed is also cause for concern.

    At 3 a.m., Attorney General Yuvanjan Wijethilake was reportedly summoned to Temple Trees. It was at about 3 a.m. that UPFA polling officials from the counting centres were sending word to Temple Trees that President Rajapaksa had lost the election.

    According to the Sirisena campaign, the AG was called in for an opinion on whether a state of Emergency could be declared under the Public Security Ordinance to suspend the issuing of election results. The Daily FT reliably learns that the Attorney General only advised that such a course of action by a defeated candidate could have potentially-dangerous repercussions.

    According to the plaint filed at the Criminal Investigations Department by Foreign Minister Mangala Samaraweera, President Rajapaksa, Defence Secretary Gotabaya, Chief Justice Peiris, former Minister G.L. Peiris and Udaya Gammanpila had been planning the illegal attempt to stay in power using military force.

    Minister Samaraweera’s complaint notes that a large number of soldiers in the Panagoda Cantonment had been issued orders by the former Defence Secretary to standby to prevent the issuing of election results once Emergency was declared. It is unclear whether Emergency regulations specifically empower a president to suspend the count during an election. But sweeping powers the regulations confer upon the president could empower him to overturn or suspend the operation of any law on national security grounds. Presumably, this would also apply to election laws.

    The parallel reality

    Undoubtedly, if the plan being hatched at Temple Trees before dawn on 9 January had been successful, several arrests would have been made before sunrise. Maithripala Sirisena and Commissioner Deshapriya would have been prime targets. Opposition activists would have been hunted down.

    The military would have then moved into the counting centres around the island, after being strategically placed earlier in districts that would prove particularly problematic – the biggest ‘special’ security plan in place was for Colombo. Securing the capital would be key to any attempt to hold power, with its broadcasting towers, central Government administration and foreign diplomatic corps.

    This could have been the parallel universe Sri Lankans woke up in, if IGP Illangakoon, Attorney General Wijeyatilake and Army Commander Lt. Gen. Daya Ratnayake had failed to stand their ground. The decision of the Army Chief was vital, since his refusal to comply with illegal orders would necessitate splitting the military and issuing orders through officers loyal only to the Rajapaksa family. With the STF deployed across the city, any attempt to take over by force, without the concurrence of the Head of the Army, could have ended with blood on the streets, authoritative sources explained.

    In remarks made to reporters, Lt. Gen. Ratnayake refused to comment on whether he had been approached by officials of the former regime to participate in a takeover. The Army Commander also insisted he would cooperate with any investigation undertaken by the new administration regarding the alleged coup attempt at Temple Trees on election night.

    Much of what unfolded in the ‘palace’ that night remains the subject of hearsay and intense speculation. The truth of all these claims will only be revealed once the new administration completes a full investigation into the allegations. So far, several facts have already been corroborated. Attorney General Wijeyatilake was definitely summoned to Temple Trees at 3 a.m., Samaraweera’s statement says. The Attorney General had informed a Deputy Solicitor General in his department before answering the summons.

    Playing the devil’s advocate, one could speculate on the claims and allegations being made by the new administration. Perhaps it is an attempt to make the defeated President seem power-hungry and brutal, to take away the gloss of his early departure before full results were declared on 9 January. Still, questions persist. Why did the regime allow the military build-up in Colombo before election day? And since its defeat, the Rajapaksa camp is yet to answer why the Attorney General and the Chief Justice were both present in the Temple Trees ‘operations room’ on election night.

    Minister Samaraweera argues that close circuit television recordings from Temple Trees will provide a fuller picture of exactly who was present and involved in discussions that night. At a press conference at which he denied any discussion about an attempt to stay in power following President Rajapaksa’s defeat, former Minister G.L. Peiris admitted he had been present at Temple Trees that night. Lt. Gen. Ratnayake’s measured remarks and refusal to comment on if he was issued orders also tell a story. At 1 a.m., Temple Trees was a hive of activity, with military vehicles and tinted cars moving through the gates.

    At a press conference at which he denied any discussion about an attempt to stay in power following President Rajapaksa’s defeat, former Minister G.L. Peiris admitted he had been present at Temple Trees that night. Lt. Gen. Ratnayake’s measured remarks and refusal to comment on if he was issued orders also tell a story. At 1 a.m., Temple Trees was a hive of activity, with military vehicles and tinted cars moving through the gates.

    Ranil steps in

    Around 4 a.m., the discussions suddenly ceased, according to reports by insiders. President Rajapaksa appeared to have heard enough from his ‘counsel’. He walked out of the operations room and reportedly made a telephone call. Mahinda Rajapaksa had insisted on speaking ‘only to Wickremesinghe’.

    On high alert all night, the Opposition was anticipating trouble of some kind. Forty-eight hours before election day, Opposition Leader Ranil Wickremesinghe reached out to the Rajapaksa regime to begin ‘soft’ transition talks. The latest polling data strongly indicated an opposition victory on 8 January and with the campaigning ended, the Sirisena campaign began to focus on the next hurdle. It speaks to the character of the Rajapaksa regime that nobody expected the defeated President to go ‘quietly into the night’.

    In the 48 hours to polling day once campaigning ended at midnight of 5 January was when the Opposition campaign began to focus all its energies on facilitating a smooth transition of power. President Rajapaksa and Wickremesinghe had been colleagues in Parliament for several decades, and over the years the pair had built something of a friendship despite being on different sides throughout their political careers.

    President Rajapaksa could not be certain of his former Health Minister or other players in the Opposition camp, especially his former Army Chief and political rival, Sarath Fonseka. The Rajapaksa regime believed that if Ranil Wickremesinghe assured their safety, he would keep his word. Over two days, this is exactly the kind of trust the Opposition campaign had hoped would be built between President Rajapaksa and the UNP Leader.

    Safety assured

    President Rajapaksa was willing to have the discussion over the phone, but Wickremesinghe insisted it was ‘better’ for him to drive over to Temple Trees. It has already been reported that the Opposition Leader had been stunned to see the Chief Justice inside the official residence of a candidate while results were still being released. When Wickremesinghe asked him what he was doing there, Peiris muttered that he had come over to give ‘a legal opinion’ and then stepped out.
    At the pre-dawn meeting with Wickremesinghe, President Rajapaksa and the Defence Secretary wanted assurances that they would be allowed to leave their official residences peacefully. They also wanted an assurance that Fonseka would have no role in their post-election fate. Wickremesinghe was able to meet both conditions.

    It had been Sirisena’s campaign pledge, also articulated in private, that he wanted to end the politics of revenge. No opposition leader was willing to give the previous regime assurances of immunity from legal processes against corruption and abuse of power, but the Sirisena campaign was adamant that political witch-hunts were strictly off the table.

    Wickremesinghe arrived at Temple Trees around 5 a.m. By 6:30, with results in only a few districts still being reported, Presidential Media Unit Director Vijayananda Herath notified the media that President Rajapaksa had taken leave of Temple Trees. Shocking pictures of President Rajapaksa stepping out of the residence were accompanied with the message that the defeated incumbent had ‘bowed to the verdict of the people’.

    ‘A complex man’

    Political Scientist Professor Jayadeva Uyangoda noted later the same day that the departure seemed quite contrary to the macho strongman image President Rajapaksa had built, particularly in the past five years. Mahinda, Prof. Uyangoda observed, was a ‘complex man’.

    In the first shock of his quiet exit, political observers like Prof. Uyangoda wondered whether the move signalled President Rajapaksa’s return to an older avatar in his final hours in office. Perhaps the defeated President was thinking of the future of his family, Prof. Uyangoda observed. “As a ruler he was autocratic, but at this particular moment he seemed to return to his former self, portraying himself as a democrat,” the political scientist explained.

    Perhaps the defeated leader had feared resistance or violence if he played out his final hours any other way, Prof. Uyangoda argued. “But people can’t believe it, that he would give up power easily,” he explained.

    One week later, allegations about the regime’s more sinister agendas abound. No longer is it possible to believe that President Rajapaksa bowed out like a statesman; rather that he was only willing to go after every avenue was exhausted. Once more, he fell prey to the machinations of his family, the high officials, ministers and offspring that have proved his undoing these past nine years.

    Minister Samaraweera is demanding a CID investigation into the attempted coup, citing sections 115 and 120 of the Penal Code. Charges under Section 115 carry sentences of life imprisonment or 20 years in prison and heavy fines for conspiring to “deprive the People of the Republic of Sri Lanka of their Sovereignty in Sri Lanka or any part thereof, or conspires to overawe, by means of criminal force or the show of criminal force, any of the organs of Government”.

    Section 120 of the Penal Code, under which Samaraweera is also demanding CID action, stipulates that any person who “by words, either spoken or intended to be read, or by signs; or by visible representations, or otherwise, excites or attempts to excite feelings of disaffection to the President or to the Government of the Republic, or excites or attempts to excite hatred to or contempt of the administration of justice, or excites or attempts to excite the People of Sri Lanka to procure, otherwise than by lawful means, the alteration of any matter by law established” and carries a two-year prison term if found guilty.

    Political observers and opposition activists say Ranil Wickremesinghe would be the only person in full possession of facts regarding Mahinda Rajapaksa’s alleged attempt to cling to power. Sketchy reports have also emerged that Wickremesinghe had to talk President Rajapaksa down when he was contemplating the unthinkable and threatening to bring a violent end to a shocking election cycle. But the new Prime Minister plays his cards close to his chest and remains unwilling to address the coup d’etat allegations.

    It is Wickremesinghe’s contention that excessive discussion about the events of election night could create political instability soon after the new administration took office. True to their word, Wickremesinghe and President-elect Sirisena allowed President Rajapaksa and his family to depart peacefully, their security intact and Air Force helicopters still at their disposal.

    Opposition security plans

    By contrast, the Opposition campaign had taken massive precautions to protect themselves in the event of defeat or an illegal attempt by the regime to remain in power after losing the election. On 7 January, several key Opposition strategists moved into safe-houses and hotel rooms around the city.

    In a unique twist in this election, civil society activists and lawyers had taken a lead in strategy and advocacy for the Sirisena campaign. Politicians had party backing, Parliamentary privilege and security that comes with membership in the Legislature. Ad hoc activists who had composed the soul of the Sirisena campaign’s ideas for change had the least protection in the event of a Rajapaksa re-election. They were, effectively, marked men.

    Several such activists moved their families into different houses or apartments on election eve. They stopped travelling alone. Meetings took place at designated hotel rooms around the city that were turned into special operations centres. Since it was impossible to speak freely on mobile phones, the campaign resorted to using the smart phone application Viber.

    Codes were designated and shared to refer to specific individuals or activities. Face-to-face meetings were always preferred over telephone conferences. Civil society activists moved over to encrypted messaging services to share information with journalists. With the extent of electronic and physical surveillance unknown, the Opposition took excessive precautions.

    This was life in Rajapaksa-controlled Sri Lanka, where political opposition to overthrow a regime through democratic means constituted treason. Opposition activists were ‘conspirators’; their imprisonment imminent in the event of the incumbent’s re-election.

    Now that the events of election night are unfolding, it is clear none of these fears were unfounded. For several hours on the morning of 9 January, the Republic stood upon the edge of a knife. Any small loss of courage and fortitude in any one of the officials who reportedly turned down orders that night could have altered the character and soul of democratic Sri Lanka. It would have been the Rajapaksa regime’s crowning glory.

    For nearly a decade, the regime presided over the worst erosion of democratic traditions and institutions since independence. An election night coup d’etat to take over power through armed force would have been the final destination on the dangerously authoritarian path the Rajapaksa regime had been determined to travel.

    Ballot box revolutions

    Analysts argue that it takes a certain familiarity with military rule and faith in the armed forces as being the only stable institution in a country for citizens to be accepting of military coups. This was the fear too for Sri Lanka, that the systemic militarisation of the polity, with soldiers made to stand out as the only effective force in a sea of inept politicians and bureaucrats, would ultimately alter citizen mindsets.

    Eight more years of Rajapaksa rule may have ensured the entrenchment of the military in ways that would fundamentally alter the democratically inclined psyche of the Sri Lankan citizen. Fortunately, 2015 was too soon. Flashes of independence and democratic spirit were still alive and well in the bureaucracy and armed forces.

    Since independence, Sri Lankans have made a habit of throwing out their rulers every two or three years. After nearly a decade of rule by a larger-than-life, wildly popular President, there were fears that faith in the ability to change governments regularly had been eroded somewhat in the citizen’s psyche.

    But on 8 January, Sri Lankan voters proved that their democratic instincts had survived the onslaught of nine supremely oppressive years. For a decade, the Rajapaksa regime feared being overthrown through international conspiracies, foreign meddling, or Arab spring type citizen uprisings. They warned that this would be a dangerous road, leading to instability and collective subjugation to the Western powers. In the end, none of that was to prove necessary. Sri Lankans went to the polls one week ago, to overthrow the shadow of tyranny, oppression and downright bad governance the way they have for the past 60 years. Through the ballot box.

    Fortunately for the republic, a peaceful transition was effected on 9 January and Sri Lanka was hailed for the maturity and strength of its democracy.

    President Maithripala Sirisena was sworn-in at the historic Independence Square, with rows upon rows of National Flags fluttering in the wind. The dusk inauguration was an emotional moment for Sirisena supporters and celebration for the wider citizenry. In the historic square, the simple ceremony was replete with symbols of restitution and the reclamation of citizens’ space.

    In victory, the Opposition deliberately overlooked Chief Justice Peiris, whose appointment to office was so controversial it would have sullied President Sirisena’s oath-taking. Instead, President-elect Sirisena swore his oath of office as Sri Lanka’s first citizen, before the most senior Judge of the Supreme Court, Justice K. Sripavan.

    Former Army Chief Sarath Fonseka, jailed and stripped of military honours for the crime of having contested the presidency against Mahinda Rajapaksa in 2010, was greeted to an uproarious welcome by the crowd and took his place among other leaders of the Opposition campaign at the swearing-in ceremony.

    Winds of freedom

    For journalists and civil society activists, this first week since Sirisena’s election has brought a taste of freedom that had been almost entirely forgotten over the past decade. For however brief a time, there is relief in the lifting of oppressive State control.

    By 12 midnight on 9 January, the private telecommunications provider Dialog lifted its censorship of the Colombo Telegraph and other illegally-banned websites on its network. Two days later, the Government ordered the Telecommunications Regulatory Commission to lift the ban on dozens of websites that had been inaccessible without proxy servers in Sri Lanka for years. Suddenly, it was safe to speak freely on the telephone and mention high officials of the previous regime by name in unencrypted text messages.

    Adversarial politics appear to have taken a backseat on political talk-shows, with all party representatives talking about 100 days of change. On the Satana talk-show that created waves during the presidential election campaign, last week there were poignant moments that proved revealing about how much had altered within a space of five days.

    The Satana moderators asked TNA lawmaker M.A. Sumanthiran why moderate Tamil leaders no longer tried to engage with the Sinhalese political leadership on talk-shows and debates as they used to. Sumanthiran, one of the few MPs in the TNA who can speak Sinhalese, replied that language was a major impediment.

    “Only I and Mr. Sampanthan can speak a little Sinhalese, and my Sinhalese is also very weak,” the TNA MP explained. The moderators were quick to assure the Tamil politician that they saw no weakness in the way he spoke the language and thanked him for his participation in the show and constant engagement in TV debates.

    Just before the commercial break, Health Minister Rajitha Senaratne spoke up. He expressed his sadness about how moderate Tamil politicians had been wiped out over time, including MP Raviraj and Joseph Pararajasingham. Thanking Sumanthiran for his participation, the new Minister added: “You say your Sinhalese is weak. But it is my eternal shame that I cannot speak five words in Tamil to you.”

    Undoubtedly, something has altered in the mood of the country. Impunity, perpetuated by the top echelons of the previous regime, proved contagious. It filtered down to the smallest village. The politics of racism and hate also percolated down to the grassroots from the highest levels of the defeated administration. They steered the racist discourse. The country followed suit. Racism and intolerance only enters mainstream political discourse when it is actively endorsed and encouraged by the political leadership. At all other times it tends to be relegated to the fringes of the political debate.

    The defeated Rajapaksa regime may try hard to engage in racist rabble-rousing, but the mainstream has quietened down. Without the State media to propagate their messages and wild allegations about attacks on Army outposts in the north, their arguments are no longer binding on the electorate.

    Steps in the right direction

    The new Government also took an important step to foster reconciliation, by removing Northern Governor and former military commander Maj. Gen. G.A. Chandrasiri just one week into assuming office. Governor Chandrasiri’s reappointment last year was a major blow to already fragile relations between the Rajapaksa administration and the TNA. The Tamil party has repeatedly emphasised the need to normalise life in the former war zone by reverting to a civilian administration in the Northern Province.

    The appointment of retired diplomat H.M.G.S. Palihakkara as Northern Governor is seen as an important confidence-building measure between the new Government and the TNA.
    Palihakkara’s credentials are good, both as an efficient bureaucrat and an agent of reconciliation. In 2009, while the Sri Lankan Government engaged in the final military thrust against the LTTE, it was Palihakkara who served as Sri Lanka’s Permanent Representative to the UN in New York. Working 18 hours or more a day, as he liaised between Colombo and New York, Ambassador Palihakkara fought tooth and nail to keep Sri Lanka off the agenda of the UN Security Council when serious concerns were being raised about the extent of civilian casualties in the final phase of the war.

    A former Foreign Secretary, Palihakkara also served on the Lessons Learnt and Reconciliation Commission (LLRC), the Government-appointed truth commission that strongly advised a credible domestic investigation into allegations of grave human rights abuses during the last months of the war and a political solution to the ethnic conflict. The LLRC also recommended a series of confidence building measures between the Government and the Tamil people of the north and east to prevent the re-emergence of conflict.

    The previous Government’s disdain for the LLRC report’s most serious recommendations have turned the document into a blueprint for the international community, which repeatedly called on the Sri Lankan Government to implement the suggestions of its own commission. The LLRC is widely believed to have been Palihakkara’s brainchild, as he correctly feared the escalation of international involvement in Sri Lanka’s post-war reconciliation and accountability processes if residual matters arising from the end of the conflict were not effectively addressed domestically.

    Similarly hopeful signs include the appointment of former career diplomat Jayantha Dhanapala as Presidential Advisor on Foreign Policy and Jayampathy Wickremeratne PC as Presidential Advisor on Constitutional Affairs. The decision to appoint Sri Lanka’s most senior career diplomat as Secretary to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs also signals a return to the status quo and the shunning of the previous administration’s tendency to make appointments based on political loyalty rather than merit.

    A long-forgotten injustice has also been redressed, with President Sirisena handing Temple Trees over to his Prime Minister and deciding to occupy only President’s House in Colombo Fort. Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapaksa was the last occupant of Temple Trees. After his election as President in 2005, Rajapaksa simply continued to retain the Prime Minister’s Residence, while also laying claim to President’s House a few kilometres away. Neither Prime Ministers Ratnasiri Wickremanayake nor D.M. Jayaratne were ever permitted to take up residence at what should have been their official premises in Colpetty.

    Reservations persist about certain appointments to the Cabinet of Ministers and the bureaucracy, but the overall report card for President Sirisena’s first week in office is cause for cautious optimism. He appears still, to be listening to advisors and willing to correct mistakes along the way. In the first hours and days of his presidency, he relied heavily on Prime Minister Wickremesinghe’s considerable experience and constitutional expertise to guide him in decision-making about affairs of state, aides say.

    Every administration has its honeymoon period. The electorate is full of hope that change will be delivered. There is euphoria and optimism in the air. Obviously, all this could be short-lived.

    ‘Unknown angel?’

    President Sirisena, as his incumbent challenger infamously put it at a rally in Jaffna, is an ‘unknown angel’. Clearly the dark horse candidate in this presidential race, the Sri Lankan public know him only as a Minister in SLFP Cabinets. By all indications his first months will be a test of his skill as a consensus builder, as he strives to hold an unwieldy and ideologically diverse coalition together to fulfil his 100-day pledges.

    The decision of his predecessor to hand over the reins of the SLFP also poses different questions, about how much longer he will need the support of his mish-mash coalition when he is assured support from over 100 UPFA members in Parliament. He also has a large family, waiting in the wings.

    At first glance, he appears sober and tempered in his emotions. In victory he has shown humility and an understanding of the burden of hope he carries. Yet the executive presidency has a proven track record. It corrupts the seemingly incorruptible and makes monsters of men. The forces that swept President Sirisena into office are far from being only political. This was a citizens’ movement for change – from the lawyers to the academics, to the student and trade unionist.
    Having got a taste for demanding accountability as the space for revelations about corrupt Government deals and excesses opened up during the election campaign, now expectations are justifiably high and delivery by the new clan will be monitored.

    Against all odds, Sri Lankan voters created history by ousting an incumbent for the first time in the history of the executive presidency. The overthrow of the Mahinda Rajapaksa administration was never about a change of faces. It was about changing a system, to ensure that the past nine years can never happen again.

    The first images and video that emerged from Tangalle showed a defeated but bombastic President Rajapaksa addressing floods of supporters at his Medamulana home. The all-powerful incumbent from only a few days ago, who hologrammed himself into campaign events and used remote controlled drones to film his rallies, sits upon a simple wicker chair, addressing his supporters in a large hall using a crude, plastic microphone or loudspeaker.

    This is an important image for the new administration to carry with it, as it steps into governance. The citizen has reclaimed democracy and the space to dissent after nearly a decade. There is proof now, in the rise and fall of Mahinda Rajapaksa, that the people’s democratic impulses and political soul remains undamaged and intact.

    There is a truth here that should strike fear into the hearts of Sri Lanka’s new rulers. Everybody thought Mahinda Rajapaksa was electorally invincible. That is, until the Sri Lankan voter decided that he wasn’t.

  18. AnuD Says:

    3cerberus:

    Read public domain articles and see how Obama visited Katrina victims. Most of the katrina victims were balcks and katrina happened when bush was reigning. Unlike Sri lanka which acted very fast on Tsunami victims, USA was very slow, it was like almost neglected.

  19. Lorenzo Says:

    Why Micro is pasting this JUNK?

    VOLLEY BASTIAN’S baila is way better. At least his work was not pro-TE and anti-SL.

  20. Lorenzo Says:

    Looks like the My3 victory of PATRIOTS has been HIJACKED by worthless pieces of ENDIAN dirt!

    This is not good. Unless these dirt stop acting as if they won TAMIL ELAM, they have to be taught a lesson to remember and seperated from My3.

  21. AnuD Says:

    I am pretty sure, India had some hands on it. Nowadays, it seems every politician goes to Singapore to set up their bank accounts or start new deals. Some one reported that CBK got $ 250 million from some where and they were ready to buy MPs who wanted to cross. In turn MR gave Rs 500 million BONUS to every minister to stay with him.

    I am pretty sure, Lanka web and people who comment it broken down because MR lost and they are not worried about how MR destroyed Sri lanka.

    But, comparing MR with Obama is just comparing apples and Oranges.

    MR with thousands of advisor and his family reigning in every important if he could not do that, accept that he can not do it.

    They all engaged living lives at the expense of the country.

    Accept the truth.

  22. AnuD Says:

    Everybody, understand the fact that both JVP and JHU wanted MR gone. Now the problem is 100 day cabinet is full of former thieves, killers and their children. more thieves from the MR govt are crossing in order to escape prosecution.

    Talk about those things.

    Country is important than the rajapakses and general election is the next most important.

    Stop mourning.

  23. AnuD Says:

    Lorenzo:

    I don’t think Maithri will act the way CBK wants. Ranil will be very careful. Read DINAMINA. I am pretty sure, it will be a different world.

  24. AnuD Says:

    Swiss bank says Sri lankans have deposited $ 98 million in Swiss bank.

    http://sinhala.lankanewsweb.net/news/15375-2015-01-18-04-43-44

  25. Ananda-USA Says:

    Tamil Nadu wants to “REPATRIATE Sri Lankan Tamils” with an AID PACKAGE from Sri Lanka, including “1/2 Acre of Land” in the Wanni!!!

    And so, Tamil “RESETTLEMENT” is to proceed, presumably including Indian Tamils Kallathonis among them, at Sri Lanka’s expense, while Sinhala settlers are BARRED from setlling there!

    Aiyoooo Sirisenaaaa …… What have you done to our Motherland!

    Yahapalanaya ==>> Kotipalanaya!

    …………………
    Aid Package Needed for Refugees to Return to Lanka

    ColomboPage News Desk, Sri Lanka.

    Jan 19 (NIE) COLOMBO- S.C.Chandrahasan, head of the Organization for Eelam Refugees� Rehabilitation (OfERR), has been trying to impress upon the Governments of India and Tamil Nadu the need to work out an aid package to motivate Sri Lankan Tamil refugees to return to the island nation.

    On Sunday, Indian Foreign Minister Sushma Swaraj and her Sri Lankan counterpart Mangala Samaraweera, had agreed to start, by the end of January, discussions on the repatriation of Lankan Tamil refugees living in camps in Tamil Nadu.

    Welcoming the decision, Chandrahasan said that OfERR had worked out a time-bound aid package and submitted it to the Governments of India, Sri Lanka and Tamil Nadu. “It could be the basis of an India-Sri Lanka Agreement on Repatriation and Resettlement,” he told Express.

    It would be easier to work with the new Lankan regime, given the fact that it will not make a fetish of security concerns unlike the Rajapaksa government, Chandrahasan felt. But New Delhi should see to it that the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) does not put a spoke in the wheel by propagating the idea that the refugees should be given permanent resident status or citizenship in India, he added.

    “It is important for Lankan Tamils to return to their homeland and reclaim their lost lands and rights there,” Chandrahasan said.

    Aid Package

    To motivate the refugees to return, the Lankan government should give them land and the means to start a livelihood, and India could look after other needs.

    “It should be possible for the Lankan government to give about 20,000 returnee families half an acre each in the Wanni area. India could help them build houses and offer a financial grant to each family for three to six months. The financial part of the aid package will tally with the amount the governments of India and Tamil Nadu are now spending on the refugees,” Chandrahasan said.

    Asked if refugees would opt to go back, he said: ” The 26,000 who came in 2006 will go back because they have not struck roots in Tamil Nadu. Among the rest, the women and youth want to go, but older men find shifting difficult.”

  26. Ananda-USA Says:

    My3’s victory was NEVER BY PATRIOTS, except in TURNCOAT Lorenzo’s wet dreams!

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