STAND FIRM, BE FAIR AND THAT IS TRULY SRI LANKAN
Posted on June 2nd, 2009

Dr Donald Chandraratna, Perth Australia

Sri Lanka has stood up to the bullying by the European nations. Quite unlike the previous regimes the current President has defied the taunting by the likes of David Milliband to remind that coterie of individuals who declare themselves to be the self appointed representatives of the International community that sovereignty of a nation is a serious matter which cannot be trammelled by a bunch of misinformed miscreants. The Geneva Protocol was quite clear on this as regards internal matters. The modus operandi to accuse us was on the Human rights front but that has become puerile because they were the prosecutor, judge, the jury all in one and the real international community saw through the charade. This in fact is a lesson in politics that academics and human rights activists should note. The so called international community and the self appointed human rights activists who are not representing anybody but themselves were on the verge of taking poor nations to the Laundromat. Other nations of the world will praise Sri Lanka for putting a stop to this nonsensical street drama. These human rights activists fail to see the travesty of human rights in their own countries before pointing the finger at countries such as Sri Lanka. I can categorically state that if a true measure is taken Sri Lanka will be nothing but near the top on the Human rights scale. But being a developing nation we have no way in proving that we are the best. People like us who are living in the so called individualistic nations ought to see the world in the right perspective. Take US for example where if you fall ill and have no money you are virtually dead. In countries such as Norway and Finland a black skinned person is virtually outcast. The Romani people are attacked day in and day out in Europe. Take the systems of justice in some of the Slovak countries and they are not worth the name. In the US one cannot be walking the streets in the night for fear of being attacked. The media mafia who are seeing so many bad things in Sri Lanka do not talk these for they are not money spinners. A good photograph is what they want or a sensational story which is unique but never the totality of truth but will pay rich dividends. Their altruism is where the dollars are. When one reads the horrendous stories that the Western media particularly the BBC is spouting I have a suspicion always that they neither are typical nor true to reality. We are now wiser after the LTTE debacle.

 

No one should be dictating to a nation as to what it should do. Sri Lanka and particularly the President keep harping on the fact that the people are the holders of sovereign power in a democracy and that they will have a home grown solution to the issues in the country. None can disagree. I for one feel that there are no major problems to handle once the displaced people are settled in their homes and those who were driven out are helped to return. If one were to proffer any advice which may be taken on board I would suggest that creative and innovative ideas be tried. The solutions which we may have thought to be appropriate in the 70’s and 80’s are dated now. The world is a different place now though in the case of Sri Lanka, we were, stagnant for thirty odd years because of the violence. Once the democratic opportunities are opened for people to become active citizens they will decide what is best for them. The lack of that opportunity thwarted by the Tigers was the reason for the oppression of the Tamils. The discrimination was inflicted by the Terror. Any grievance if any must be openly aired and argued. That is what democracy is all about. The Diaspora talks of this horrendous discrimination but I for one cannot list many of them. My curt reply to any Tamil fiend is to show me where and in what way people were discriminated prior to the LTTE. We should be genuine in alleging and genuine in accepting if these are true. Not sweeping allegations without evidence.

 

The contentious issue after the IDP’s will of course be the so called political solution. This is an interesting scenario. The Provincial councils of the 13 th Amendment will of course be theirs. If the LTTE was not there they would have had it anyway.  In retrospect all that violence the LTTE unleashed on us is in vain. Any solution under the 13 th Amendment must be for all Sri Lankans. Even in that statute if there is even the miniscule possibility of a build up to separatism it must be withheld for the time being. That is because we in the South should not be subjected to terror again. Like the way that the state is assisting one group of people it must also not subject  any other group to unfairness. Modern day liberals such a John Rawls would agree that a fair principle assisting one section ought not to decrease the life chances of others. The Diaspora assisted by the Western voodoo merchants is praying for an avenue to ignite the separatist flame through the Provincial Councils and we know that. That cannot be allowed. The freedom of movement of the whole population cannot be sacrificed on that altar. Our provinces must not become ghettoes or enclaves for any particular ethnic group. I would suggest that the Northern Province be the Vegetable Garden of Sri Lanka and all agro businesses be located there for there is a scientific and economic reason to back my proposal. The East will be the Surfers Paradise of Sri Lanka. The Mannar District will be the Fisheries Hub. The Wanni, given the present history will be the University Centre for Military science. If businesses are set up, institutions are built, factories are established free trade zones are created, financial centres are opened it does not matter where people come from to settle.  We have lived together before and we should learn to live together in the future. Just as much the Capital of the country has all ethnics so will be the other provinces. When the Human rights activists are saying that the world should be without borders, we are also joining the same refrain that Sri Lanka is without borders. I imagine that the day will come.  Thinking anew will be the catalyst for development. The idea of replicating every province like the garlic is old fashioned.

 

I only wish that the President takes all measures to weed out any obstacle to the freedom of people to exercise the biggest gift of Democracy and that is the opportunity to become active citizens which will dawn a new age in Sri Lankan political history. The plea by a Tamil organisation to de-arm all groups and individuals is a reasonable suggestion and it should be implemented prior to the first poll for the Municipalities. To see that all weapons are removed from all bar the security services will be welcomed by one and all. Violence has corrupted the whole country and a decent society cannot come about with guns ablaze. US may boast of true democracy in which the freedom to bear arms is a right. This logic Mrs Clinton will find hard to convince any Sri Lankan who has seen the LTTE arsenal. Secondly no political party which espouses separatist ideas should be registered by the Commissioner for Elections and thirdly, a racial discrimination and incitement to violence law must be promulgated.

One Response to “STAND FIRM, BE FAIR AND THAT IS TRULY SRI LANKAN”

  1. PRIYAN WIJEYERATNE Says:

    Well written document; no one can write it better! Well done Donald!! Priyan

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