Author Archive for H. L. D. Mahindapala

Polls predict pyrrhic victory for TNA

Friday, September 20th, 2013

H. L. D. Mahindapala What is most critical for the TNA to convince the Tamils, both in and out of Sri Lanka, is not the number of seats they win on Saturday -” this not in dispute — but the overall percentage of votes they are likely to collect from the electorate. A majority of […]

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Navy Pillay”‘s grim silence on Tamil war criminals

Thursday, September 12th, 2013

H. L. D. Mahindapala On May 26, 2009 when the UNHRC met for the first time to consider the post-war situation in Sri Lanka Ms. Navi Pillay was busy elsewhere. Because she could not attend she sent a recorded message to UNHRC. It was pre-recorded on May 25, 2009, which was only eight days after […]

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Derelict human rights drifting aboard rudderless UNHRC-Part II

Friday, August 30th, 2013

H. L. D. Mahindapala  When the first-born apex institution to protect human rights, the United Nations Human Rights Commission, is killed and buried unceremoniously by its founding fathers at the UN for failing to live up to its mandate it is legitimate to ask whether its successor, the United Nations Human Rights Council, can survive […]

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In this review of the first book on United Nations Human Rights Council, H. L. D. Mahindapala asks:Can Navi Pillay save human rights and UNHRC?

Monday, August 26th, 2013

H. L. D. Mahindapala Part I  The UN has notched some significant successes during its 68-year run, indicating that its life span is going to be more durable than its predecessor, the League of Nations, which  died prematurely. Unfortunately, one of its successes has not been in the field of human rights, though it is […]

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Is Wigneswaram fit to be Chief Minister of Tamils?

Thursday, July 18th, 2013

H. L. D. Mahindapala  The effusiveness with which the pro-separatist/13A lobby has hailed former Judge C. V. Wigneswaran as the next rising star for the salvation of  Tamils is too premature. Knowing  the twists and turns that politics take in Sri Lankan politics only a fool or a knave would dare to predict the outcome […]

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Marxists are like Indians: both have failed

Wednesday, July 3rd, 2013

H. L. D. Mahindapala I am happy to bounce back from the hospital bed and browse the multitudinous vistas of the world that filter through the sheen of the polar-white glow of the cyber screen without which I will be lost in an infinite Sahara. Through the instant magic which provides most of my necessities for mental sustenance and sanity  — I […]

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WHAT BENEFIT IS THERE IN DAYAN’S DEAL IN GENEVA?- The following is H. L. D. Mahindapala’s reply to Dr. Dayan Jayatilleka’s response to the criticism of his controversial role in Geneva. Scroll down to read Dr. Jayatilleka’s defence of his role

Thursday, June 20th, 2013

H.L.D. Mahindapala  I welcome my friend Dayan’s response to my lengthy review of his book, Long War, Cold Peace  published in yesterday’s Daily News. May I also add that it was long overdue. I also note his metaphor in which he compares his response as “the intellectual equivalent of entering a Taliban held area of remote Afghanistan.” […]

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India — the cause not the solution to Sri Lankan problems-Continuing review of Dr. Dayan Jayatilleka’s book, Long War, Cold Peace

Tuesday, June 18th, 2013

H. L. D. Mahindapala According  to my friend Dayan Jayatilleka’s own admission his latest book, Long War, Cold Peace, was rushed to the printer in the hope of  getting it out on time to impact on the UNHRC session in March — a critical session in which the big powers, including India, were preparing to nail Sri Lanka. This, of […]

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A review of Dr. Dayan Jayatilleka’s latest book, Long War, Cold Peace -

Thursday, June 6th, 2013

H. L. D. Mahindapala Devolution bad for Ceylon and worse for Tamils — G. G. Ponnambalam My friend Dayan Jayatilleka takes great pride and pleasure in branding himself as a “political scientist”. That is his right and privilege. Besides, it is a term very fashionable in academic circles even though the research in this pseudo-science […]

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Continuing book review of Dayan Jayatilleka’s, Long War, Cold Peace — Part V- INDIA PAVING THE PATH TO THIRD WORLD WAR

Saturday, May 25th, 2013

H. L. D. Mahindapala India has not only lost its moral compass in foreign policy which was packaged and hailed as the “Panchaseela” at the height of the Non-Aligned Movement but also the strategic compass to navigate in the Indian Ocean. India needs an ethical / balanced foreign policy to win back the moral and […]

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Continuing the book review of Dayan Jayatilleka’s Long war, Cold Peace — Part IV -INDIA A THREAT TO REGIONAL PEACE AND SECURITY

Saturday, May 18th, 2013

H. L. D. Mahindapala The main thrust in my friend Dayan’s political predictions — both domestic and foreign — is invariably aimed at projecting passing fears, laced with his political preferences / prejudices, into impending doomsday scenarios . In his calculations it is always going to be the end of the world for Sri Lanka […]

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Response of H. L. D. Mahindapala, former Editor of THE OBSERVER, to Chris Johnson, Political Editor of the SUNDAY AGE, an Australian newspaper in the state of Victoria. .

Tuesday, May 7th, 2013

H. L. D. Mahindapala, former Editor of THE OBSERVER Chris Johnson is the Political Editor of the SUNDAY AGE, an Australian newspaper in the state of Victoria. In his column last Sunday he was raising concerns about Australia handing over the chair of CHOGM for two years to Sri Lanka.  Here is the response of H. L. D. […]

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Continuing the review of Dayan Jayatilleka’s book, Long War, Cold Peace — Part II- Searching for ethics in a five-month war

Sunday, May 5th, 2013

H. L. D. Mahindapala Of the many tangled and intertwining issues that are bound to sprout from the 33-year-old war there are only two serious questions worth asking for those pursing reconciliation, peace, justice, understanding the past and, above all, the ethics of the overwhelming violence that impacted on all communities: 1. was the war […]

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Dayan’s gods and theories that failed

Saturday, April 27th, 2013

H. L. D. Mahindapala My friend Dayan Jayatileka ‘s latest book Long War, Cold Peace is exactly what I anticipated it to be: 1. overloaded with quotes from the Marxist mafia; 2. an equal measure of theoretical puffery; 3. self-contradictions; 4. self-congratulatory passages; 5. the least amount analysis of the historical roots that preceded the official […]

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Navi Pillai a misfit at UNHRC

Sunday, April 14th, 2013

H. L. D. Mahindapala The saga of the anti-Sri Lankan Resolution, which snaked its way through the hands of the power-brokers in the corridors of the UNHRC in Geneva, has a rather intriguing history: it reveals more about the machinations of big power politics and the moral and institutional failure of the UN to uphold the […]

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Dudley’s “coup” a figment of Sir. John’s imagination

Sunday, March 24th, 2013

H. L. D. Mahindapala Michael Ondaatje told a mouthful when he said that “in Sri Lanka a well-told lie is worth a thousand facts.” (Running in the Family). The tall tales of Sir John Kotelawela about Dudley Senanayake’s involvement in the coup certainly come within the category of one of those “well-told lies”. K.K.S.Perera in his response to Neville […]

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Bandaranaike — the Great Sinhala-Buddhist Liberal

Saturday, March 23rd, 2013

H. L. D. Mahindapala At the annual SLFP convention held in Kurunegala in 1959 Prime Minister S. W. R. D. Bandaranaike was feeling the rising heat of the right-wing forces, within his own party, ganging up against him. There were several disaffected forces railing against him but the most vicious and deadly thrust was spearheaded […]

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UNHRC cracking under overbearing weight of Navy Pillai

Sunday, March 17th, 2013

H. L. D. Mahindapala UNHRC is stuck in a crisis of its own making. It has begun to crack under the watch of Ms. Navy Pillai, the UN High Commissioner. It is time for her to get her act together and hold the scales evenly to preserve the image of the UNHRC as a credible […]

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Big power politics flush UN Charter down the toilet

Sunday, March 3rd, 2013

H. L. D. Mahindapala  Of all the human rights issues in global conflict and post-conflict zones why is India, EU and USA focussed relentlessly —  and, more importantly, selectively — on Sri Lanka? What is behind their persistent and the holier-than-thou obsession to hunt Sri Lanka with a vengeance? Is it pursued to fulfill the aims […]

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Time to probe the INGOs and NGOs

Sunday, February 17th, 2013

H. L. D. Mahindapala At a recent meeting the Australian Foreign Minister, Bob Carr, delivered a blunt message to his diplomats : “We are running a foreign policy for a nation-state; not for a non-governmental organisation.” (The Australian –7/2/2013, p.12.) This is an out-and-out rejection of I/NGOs as overseers or interventionists in the domestic affairs […]

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Parliament is right in rejecting Supreme Court judgment

Tuesday, February 5th, 2013

H. L. D. Mahindapala Now that the sound and fury of the brouhaha about the former Chief Justice Shirani Bandaranayake have subsided it is time look back and assess not only the triumph of the Legislature over the Judiciary but also why the legal pundits who backed the doomed case failed, particularly in cooking up legal fictions to […]

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Shirani Bandaranayake, Ph. D — white lily or prawn-head?

Tuesday, January 15th, 2013

H. L. D. Mahindapala With each passing day the evidence pointing to the guilt of ex-Chief Justice, Dr. Shirani Bandaranayake, abusing the powers of her office and misbehaving has mounted to the point of removing all shreds of doubt. The most damning evidence against her has come from the most unexpected source. It has come […]

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Suicidal politics of Hulftsdorp

Thursday, January 10th, 2013

H. L. D. Mahindapala When a senior judge of a superior court puts words into the mouth of an innocent man and sentences him to  a maximum period with the entire legal system looking the other way without raising a finger to save the innocent man, then it is time to ask whether the sovereign people can […]

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Judgement denies Constitution;Parliament’s turn to correct it

Monday, January 7th, 2013

H.L.D.Mahindapala Parliament and the Supreme Court have produced two different findings, both claiming to be vested with the superior authority to overrule the other. Both are loaded with heavy political baggage. Both rely on arguable principles denying the legitimacy of the other. Both are competing for supremacy. This comment, however, is to explore the judgment […]

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Black-coats can’t make Chief Justice lily white

Monday, December 31st, 2012

H. L. D. Mahindapala The raging public discourse on the charges levelled against the Chief Justice, Dr. Shirani Bandaranayake is wrapped mostly in legal, constitutional, political and moral principles. The legal luminaries who have defended her have studiously skipped the charges and focused essentially on issues like the legality of the Parliamentary Select Committee to […]

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Judges expose systemic failure in corrupt judiciary

Friday, December 28th, 2012

H. L. D. Mahindapala The anecdotal evidence, revealing what the judges are up to on the bench, should have amused and, more importantly, shocked the Magistrates and District Judges gathered  at the Annual General Meeting of the Judicial Services Association, (JSA)  held on December 22, 2012. For instance, Appeals Court Judge Justice A.W.A Salam , speaking on the theme of judges  falling asleep on the bench while cases are […]

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Lawyers playing politics with the Constitution

Friday, December 21st, 2012

H. L. D. Mahindapala The central issue argued before the Supreme Court was to decide whether the Parliamentary Select Committee (PSC) has the judicial power to inquire into the allegations made against the Chief Justice, Shirani Bandaranayake, or not. The argument came down to question the right of parliamentarians to judge the judges. Tied to […]

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Judge Weeramantry’s legal propositions condemn CJ Bandaranayake

Thursday, December 13th, 2012

H. L. D. Mahindapala Judge C. G. Weeramantry, the senior most retired judge in the country with 65 years of legal experience behind him, has come forward , out of the blue, to address the current crisis facing the Sri Lankan judiciary by issuing a general message on the subject. His message calling upon “every […]

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CJ Bandaranayake HOISTED by her own PETARD

Monday, December 10th, 2012

H. L. D. MAHINDAPALA One of the arguments thrown in to defend the Chief Justice, Dr. Shirani Bandaranayake, claims that nowhere in the world does Parliament / legislature sits as accuser, judge, juror and executioner. It is argued that this is a violation of Baron de Montesquieu’s political theory of separation of power where the […]

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How independent is the Judiciary?

Monday, December 3rd, 2012

H. L. D. Mahindapala  The following anecdotal  evidence is narrated to test the independence of the judiciary that was supposed to exist before the current contest between Parliament and the Judiciary broke out. The raging  controversy is based on the claim that the Judiciary was independent and the appointment of a Parliamentary Select Committee to […]

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