What Does Regime Change in Sri Lanka Mean for the United States?
Posted on April 30th, 2015

By Taylor Dibbert

Tom Malinowski,the U.S. Assistant Secretary of State for Democracy, Human Rights and Labor (DRL), recently travelled to Sri Lanka. From the looks of it, he had productive, busy visit. Malinowski even managed to visit the place in Mullaitivu district, where Sri Lanka’s civil war ended and alleged violations of international human rights and humanitarian law (on a massive scale), including war crimes, took place in 2009.

Based on some of the quotes he provided to journalists during his trip, Malinowski is extremely upbeat about how things have been going. To be fair, theop-ed he placed in a leading Sri Lankan newspaper was still optimistic, though perhaps less exuberant than some of his public comments.

The Obama administration is undoubtedly delighted that the increasingly authoritarian Mahinda Rajapaksa was thrown out of office in early January. And, since U.S.-Sri Lanka relations had turned quite sour under Rajapaksa’s watch, Washington clearly wants things to be different this time.

Malinowski’s recent statements are in line with what other senior American officials have said about Sri Lanka’s recent transfer of power. As Malinowski suggested, it appears that the Obama administration still has not decided precisely how much the bilateral relationship will evolve, particularly on controversial issues like human rights and ‘accountability’ for alleged wartime abuses. A degree of patience may be warranted, although the reform program of newly elected Maithripala Sirisena has not been going that well. On the other hand, parliament’s passage (this week) of the 19th amendment to the constitution (which trims presidential powers and establishes various independent commissions) is a significant accomplishment and has opened the door to even greater optimism regarding a reform program that had been floundering.

Indeed, it’s likely that the Obama administration will stay upbeat for at least the next several months and continue to decrease diplomatic pressure on the new government. Sirisena is expected to dissolve parliament soon and parliamentary elections could come as early as June. Once the official electoral campaign begins, Washington would seek to avoid any perceptions of interference, aside from encouraging the government to hold peaceful, transparent elections.

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9 Responses to “What Does Regime Change in Sri Lanka Mean for the United States?”

  1. ranjit Says:

    U.S BULLIES HAND’S OFF SRI LANKA. You are not welcome here. Your Ranil won’t be there for long. You mind your own business and allow us to do ours peacefully.

  2. Jayantha Says:

    What Does Regime Change in Sri Lanka Mean for the United States?

    This means Sri Lanka’s accelerated march to be Banana Republic like all the African states and most of the states in the Middle East was stopped.

    It means no more president for life.

    Sri Lanka was so close to being a degenerated African Country where when even free facilities for the use of the people were offered by donor countries the leaders asked for a 40 percent commission.

    Just like the case of Microsoft.

    And finally for those of you who hate the USA, do not send your kids to USA, to Western Europe, to Australia or even the New Zealand for higher education or for work. After all, every one of the above countries serve Uncle Sam.

    You can instead send them to follow the Ayatollah of Iran learn to read the Koran, read the Red Book of Mao in China, learn Chinese and grow squinted eyes and bristle like Chinese hair styles.

    Some of you Hate America mongers may not like what I write, but it is the Truth.

    JP / USA

  3. Ben Silva Says:

    Well said rangit

  4. Christie Says:

    Namaste: A friend of mine put a comment in the Diplomat and was removed. That is US freedom of speech. Jai Hind

  5. Ratanapala Says:

    Pigs will fly if the world can believe in US non interference in other countries. We saw what US – “Non” Interference has done to Serbia, Iraq, Libya, Afghanistan and now Ukraine.

    We definitely see what US – interference within is doing to US citizens!

    If there is a god he has to bless the whole world – he cannot bless only America!

    Blessings are coming for America – just like for those animal sacrificing Nepalese and Muslims!

  6. Independent Says:

    Short and sweet. Keep it up.

  7. NAK Says:

    Jayantha, When one eye is blind and the other is cockeyed one see’s the way you do and thinks that’s the truth. If you can try and straighten your one eye that can see you’ll see the truth is much futher than you thought.

  8. RohanJay Says:

    Ranjit probably lives in Australia, a western country and US ally. Tired of hypocrits like him and his ilk. Personally I love going to the USA almost as much as I love visiting Sri Lanka. I love the USA and visiting it. Great place to visit like Sri Lanka. Just hate their arrogant imperialist government.
    It is possible to like a country like I do while hating its government. Same with Sri Lanka. I probably dislike the current government in Sri Lanka. But I still love visiting Sri Lanka and spending time there. It seems like politicians in whichever country they are, are terrible. The less attention you give politicians in whichever country the better.

  9. Christie Says:

    “You have been a poster of extremely Indophobic comments and total nonsense like “Indian Empires” and Sinhalese being divided etc.
    This is not a place to express hate or conspiracy theories, This is a place where we discuss geo-politics so I thank the Mods for this”
    Above is what was posted when a friend of mine was posting comments on the above article by Gilbert. All anti Island nation posts are displayed but all my friends .

    Note the word “Indophobic”. Indian Empire is not a word to be used.

    Diplomat is another Indian mouth piece, It definitely receive a lot of money from Indian Vermin. My friends comments were all removed. There a lot of US things that are controlled by Indians and India.

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