Letter to Secretary Kerry on his visit to Sri Lanka.
Posted on May 2nd, 2015

Thisuri Wanniarachchi


The Honorable John Kerry,
Department of State,
Washington, DC

Dear Sir,

Welcome to the Pearl of the Indian ocean. They used to call us the tear drop of the Indian Ocean, and rightly so, but we always preferred Pearl. Despite everything we’ve been through, we have always believed that a better day is possible. And today, we can say with much certainty that the better days are here and we are striving to sustain them. Your support in this time of transition is invaluable, and I believe, I speak for all the youth of our country when I thank you whole-heartedly.

As you may notice in the coming days, we Sri Lankans are a proud people. Although conflict has attempted to divide us, we have always united in our pride. We take pride in our paradise of an island: its turquoise beaches, golden sunsets, green hills and the good earth blessed by the foot prints of the Buddha.  We take pride in our heritage of scholars, Ceylonese architecture, literature and our diverse faiths and languages. We also take pride in producing some of the world’s finest teas, spices and cricketers. Most of all, we take pride in our resilient, hardworking citizens who have been through so much, yet who stand strong and united in their fight for democracy.

Having been enslaved and colonized by multiple nations until we gained independence in 1948, then put through a brutal 30 year war just decades later, and then abandoned by an authoritarian regime at a time of great desperation and need for reconciliation, we have seen it all. Truth be told, my generation, like most children of war, have never had much trust in our adults. Their irresponsibility cost us our childhoods. We’ve seen things no child should have to see; fear was our bread and butter. To us, democracy has always been a distant dream.

The strides we’ve made as a nation in the past few months have been refreshing. It has restored our trust in the adults. I believe you can fathom how much this transition truly means to us.   It gives us the hope that our children will never have to see what we’ve seen or feel what we’ve felt, a place no child deserves to be.  Like most things in life, this transition is difficult, gradual, and sometimes frustrating, but we are getting there. Thank you for being with us, as you have with many other nations around the world as we make our way through the path to democracy.

Have a safe journey.

Yours truly,

Thisuri Wanniarachchi

Author Bio:  Thisuri Wanniarachchi, 21, is the author of novels The Terrorist’s Daughter and Colombo Streets. She is Sri Lanka’s youngest State Literary Award winner and the world’s youngest national nominee to the Iowa International Writers’ Program. She is currently an undergraduate student of Bennington College studying Political Economy and Education Reform.

10 Responses to “Letter to Secretary Kerry on his visit to Sri Lanka.”

  1. Christie Says:

    Namaste: How lucky you are dear, you are not in Baltimore. Jai Hind
    PS: Are you paying fees or got a free scholarship. We are a colony of India and some like it thatway. Thanks.

  2. Sooriarachi Says:

    Thanking the very people who declined to help Sri Lanka to eliminate the mindless terrorists who ruined the country and targeted innocent Sinhalese civilians for over three decades, is an insult to a proud nation, though this stance might benefit some individuals to reach greater heights with the help of these powerful aliens.
    Trying to dismiss the gift of peace and subsequent economic development obtained for the nation after wiping off brutal terrorists, courageously overcoming obstacles placed by hostile forces, should be appreciated and thanked for, rather than throw it to the dustbin, accusing the architects of this great gift as an authoritarian regime that abandoned the nation at a time of great desperation, which is far from reality. This only shows that gratitude is a hard to get commodity in the modern world where opportunism prevails in abundance.

  3. Raj Says:

    This young lady with all her talents has been mislead in a big way to say ‘authoritarian rulers’. That is a total misrepresentation. She may be either born and bred in America and exposed to anti sri lanka propaganda during the previous government. My son is no different other than he is now in his mid thirties, and now beginning to see how the West still want to control the world, and in that pursuit wrecking the other countries. You are a naive little girl my dear.

  4. Kumari Says:

    Whatever the Americans say now, is what they are told to say by their policy makers. By the way policy makers in the US and the West are not politicians. Their policies are formulated by the think tanks. In turn these think tanks are funded by the big corporations. So how much ever we cry their policies will not change. Whether Kerry, Obama, Cameron or Milliband the policy is the same. The politicians voted in by the people are only the smartly dressed tea boys of the think tanks.

    Around last UN voting time, I watched a Hathweni Peya on ITN, where the invitee was our War time Foreign Secretary Mr Rohitha Bogellagama. He explained that when he and President Rajapakse were attending a conference, Bogellagama happened to come out of the room to get to the conference rroom. He met Kerry who has got entangled in something and was going to fall. Then , Bogellagama helped Kerry and they both walked to the Conference room. While they walked, Bogellagama made use of the opportunity to explain to Kerry the SL situation. Then in the conference room they both walked up to Rajapakse. When Rajapakse tried to explain to the American, he has stopped Rajapakse and assured That your FM has explained everything to me and I know what is happening in your country. What is he and his team are talking now. Are they really talking from their mouths I wonder.

  5. janakic Says:

    Thisuri you are yet to comprehend the Sri Lankan as well as the world situation. Can you identify a single situation excepting the world wars, where Americans intervention had helped mankind. Vietnam got rid of them, the middle east is in flames, thanks to them. There are two sides to a story. Please read our history and the other side of the story to form an opinion.

  6. Jayantha Says:

    How correct you are Thisuri.

    January 8th was the beginning of a new dawn for the majority of Sri Lankans

    Our becoming another country very much similar to the mismanaged pol pot like e African states and most of the states in the Middle East was stopped.

    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

  7. Ratanapala Says:

    This naive little lady is grooming well to become another Sri Lankan getting ready to lick the boots of American imperialism and their false values Democracy and Human Rights. I guess she still believes in Christmas, Virgin Birth and Santa Claus!

    The Black Americans are winning their civil rights all over America. For them to the dawn is yet to come – that is why they are lighting the streets of Baltimore with bon fires.

    In the meantime God Bless America or rather White America!

  8. L Perera Says:

    The English language ASIDE you have a lot to learn. Tread carefully young lady.

  9. Sarath W Says:

    When you go back to America, make sure you wear a bullet proof west and keep away from white police officers. They don’t like the blacks even though you like to suck up to them. Kerry won’t be able to help you.

  10. helaya Says:

    What a bunch of BULL CRAP in this write up. She and Jayantha must must have applied for Green card of something. Fools you know how many Sri LAnkan Children were murmured by by your friend Parba. Little children were grabbed form their feet and hacked to death. MR eliminated this menace. Have been to Sri LAnka recently? If not go and see new roads, new Colombo and new hospitals and new schools in North and East. You ungrateful fools.

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