Presidential Elections: CBK-Maithri-Ranil-TNA Eelam deal & Sri Lanka’s National Security

The voting public of Sri Lanka whatever their political colour or preference of candidate need to firmly say no to any move or agreement attempting to destabalize the country, divide its territory or create an atmosphere of chaos.&nbspNo election campaign or coalition understanding must be permitted to bargain with the national security of the country in particular promise to reduce or eliminate strategically placed military bases and military personnel as election promises.&nbspNational safety is not a bargaining tool. Political debate in the West by no means use national safety as bargaining tools for their election campaigns. As a priority voters need to have to very first identify and get rid of political parties attempting to weaken national safety as component of their agenda for offering political support.&nbspEven so, undesirable a regional leader is, he can not be as negative as those attempting to rule Sri Lanka by way of proxies and puppets.&nbspIt is the patriotic duty of the masses to overrule any attempt to gamble with the national security of Sri Lanka.
The choice of Common Candidate
Whatever the coalition claims, the decision of the widespread candidate remains secret. No 1 has so far come out to say why they proposed the name of Maithripala Sirisena as candidate. These particulars remain really a lot secret from the public. In addition, if we are to think Colombo&#8217s anti-MR chants and the English social media and conclude that Mahinda Rajapakse is unsuited to lead, UNP could have very easily contested as a single celebration and fielded a UNP candidate to win the elections. Why was there any require to employ someone for a one hundred day role?
If Ranil was not the choice it is so simply because of his own failures, and it is on that ground that he is rejected by the voters. Therefore, the selection of Maithripala as Presidential candidate is primarily based on the reality that Ranil Wickremasinghe can only command urban votes where non-Buddhists dominate. It is to fill the void and to either break or take the Buddhist votes that Maithripala has been brought into the image. If this argument is to be believed coupled with the slogan of pluralism that Wickremasinghe preaches and promotes, Maithripala need to be regarded no hero of the Buddhists for he would by complicity help push the Buddhists additional into oblivion and gradually remove their energy.
While Mahinda Rajapakse is judged on accusations of corruptions by a select couple of surrounding him, the Coalition is becoming judged from a number of fronts all of which lead to the fear that the nation would fall into neo-colonial hands or be earmarked for division. If Maithripala is a proxy of Ranil and Ranil is a proxy of Western Christian nations this reality is more than possible and the manner that Ranil led the UNF in 2002 is prime example of what to anticipate. Hyperlink this to the manner CBK led all through her 12 year rule and what is in store for Sri Lanka rings alarm bells. The allegation of Ranil becoming a Western proxy is verified by Ranil Wickremasinghe&#8217s membership in the IDU &#8211 International Democratic Union &#8211 produced up of Christian political parties. It is alleged that the UNF Government formed in 2001 comprised 60% Christians and visas have been granted to Evangelists to spread their faith while Buddhists have been given step-motherly therapy.&nbsp items06/061006-four.html
The current revelation of a pact signed secretly with the TNA providing assurance to take away military bases, minimize military personnel in the North as properly as get rid of non-Tamil settlements deserves the consideration of the voters. There is also the assurance to carry out a war crimes inquiry which as an election manifesto does not convey a lot faith in our forces. Ideally what should be stated is that our forces did not commit any war crimes and these that accuse so have to make the proof 1st, and the reality is that for five years apart from accusations and editing film clippings nothing at all to substantiate war crimes as becoming produced as proof.
The exposure of the secret pact comes in the wake of many other pacts signed with no the contents becoming disclosed to the public. We have had the Indo-Lanka Accord signed in 1987 under emergency with Ministers obtaining to hand over signed resignation letters. Then came the 2001 Cease Fire Agreement that placed LTTE and a sovereign government as equals and legally demarcated territory as &#8216LTTE-controlled&#8217. The period saw LTTE placing up its own courts, personal police, own civil administration and openly amass weapons by means of Sri Lanka&#8217s customs! The next set of secret pacts came in the kind of the ISGA and PTOMs &#8211 these agreements had been signed by Ranil and Chandrika Kumaratunga now the shadow-leaders behind the widespread candidate. Should the voters not have a right to query what their actual plans are? Are these issues not more crucial than basically wanting alter? What assurance can they give when the corruptions below UNF and CBK rule are nothing at all they can debate in public? The public is effectively conscious that ALL POLITICIANS ARE CORRUPT. Nonetheless, what is much more important is the stability of the nation. As citizens and stakeholders of the nation do we not have a duty and correct to wonder if the nation is probably to fall to peril simply because of the exact same people that betrayed the nation not also long ago? To reverse the damage they did thousands of soldiers had to lay down their lives.
The first to betray the nation was Don Juan Dharmapala prepared to function as a puppet of the Portuguese &#8211 incidentally Ranil wanted to celebrated the arrival of the Portuguese forgetting the thousands of natives the Portuguese brutally murdered and converted. In fact the typical candidate as Common Secretary of the SLFP refered to Ranil as a traitor coming from the lineage of the Dharmapala clan although now the typical candidate promises to hand more than to Ranil the leadership mantle after one hundred days. The betrayal of the nation began on twond&nbspMarch 1815 with the signing of the Udarata Givisuma and ever because numerous other pacts necessitate the nation to stay on the alert against traitors.
The Colombo coterie eternally complaining may like to respond to what their contribution was to ending terrorism when they join the UN bandwagon not wanting the individuals to keep in mind the war victory. They do not want the men and women to recall the war victory simply because they played no function in it.
Terrorism has to remain on our minds mostly due to the fact the bargains becoming struck is with the identical political party that was created by the LTTE, the same celebration that is linked with the Diaspora organizations that the GOSL has banned, the same party that even the EU Elections Monitor Cushanan claimed was the mouthpiece of the LTTE and&nbspthe nation seriously inquiries why the GOSL does not take legal action against this celebration without enabling it to do the damage it is undertaking utilizing its political privileges?
The memoirs of Nevil Jayaweera (handpicked to be the GA Jaffna in 1963) are referred to recollect and show honor to Mr. N Q Dias (father of Mr. Gomin Dayasri) for his visionary strategy to set up military bases in the North taking stock of the possibilities of Tamil Nadu illegal immigrants pouring into Sri Lanka. Again, for petty political motives the reduction of these military bases by JR Jayawardena drastically undermined the national security of the country when Tamil militants began their terror. What Mr. N Q Dias envisaged for which he drew counter measures was verified when in November 2003 the LTTE declared that 35% of its cadres had been from Tamil Nadu! 11/
Mr. N.Q. Dias, CCS (civil servant) then Permanent Secretary to the Ministry of Defense &amp External Affairs beneath Sirimavo Government knew exactly the importance of placing the nation&#8217s armed forces at strategic points properly ahead of any calamity which the present Defense Secretary Mr. Gotabaya Rajapakse realizes as well &#8211 what proper do politicians have to bargain with the national safety of the nation? Therefore, the GOSL is questioned on why it should give in to demands to decrease and curtail security presence instead of remaining firm on the threat to national safety.&nbspThe GOSL is subsequent questioned on when it will take legal action against all these that have directly and indirectly contributed to LTTE terrorism over the years. For victims to be given any justice men and women who were linked with LTTE terror demands to be identified and placed before the courts.
The announcement of a secret pact with the TNA to remove or lessen military bases is connected to India&#8217s claim that LTTE continues to fight for an Eelam that consists of Higher Tamil Nadu, although it does query why India insists on the implementation of the 13thamendment and full devolution unless India too plans to compete for a separate North that the West would like to use as a base for itself in Asia. It also raises the question why India celebrated the 1000thanniversary of the ancient Tamil King Rajendra&nbspChola (1014ce –Rajendra Chola I was the initial Indian king to take his armies overseas and make conquests of these territories). India must recognize the message it sends out in becoming proud of ancient Kings that invaded neighboring nations and questions the relevance to the existing context of things.
These angles may be headaches for a lot of voters in Sri Lanka in specific those in Colombo, but their future depends on a safe Sri Lanka. There is practically nothing much more critical than the national safety of the country. Every thing falls into place only when the country is safe and steady. Individuals can enjoy comforts only when the country is safe. The other problems all are secondary and this is why the voters have to view how far and who can maintain the country stable and the stability comes in guaranteeing that there are no offers struck with parties that are out to divide the nation, dilute the sovereign powers of the country and create chaos thereafter. The examples of Libya, Kosovo, Iraq, Sudan may differ due to the fact they are Muslim, situated in Middle East/Africa /Eastern Europe but the very same players that broke up and have designed chaos in these nations are now seeking East towards Asia and this is why national security need to turn into the essential election pledge by the candidate. Assuring national security by forging secret pacts with players that are functioning towards dividing the nation has to be firmly rejected in the same manner that people should reject leaders who have secretly signed pacts without divulging its contents to the folks and not even to their party members on preceding occasions.
No one particular must be allowed to ridicule attempts to safe the nation&#8217s borders and safe the country. No political celebration need to be permitted to bargain and compromise the national security for petty political gain. Agreeing to dilute the National Security of Sri Lanka cannot be permitted to turn into as a political propaganda tool. The price of peace remains eternal vigilance and vigilance does not take place with no preparation and processes.

In the finish every single voter has selfish motives that determines who he/she casts the vote for. That choice must be based on who can offer peace and stability in Sri Lanka while not undermining the national safety of the country. No particular person or organization can hope to live in peace or prosper if there is no peace in the nation. Let us be reminded that all those that profited for the duration of the 30 years of war have been those that had been party to the terror and the rest of the country is only now selecting up the pieces and it is just 5 years because the finish of 30 years of LTTE terrorism.

by Shenali Waduge


Finish is nigh for Maithri and his achcharu coalition | The Sunday Occasions Sri Lanka


I feel it is my duty to respond to the comments of my unseen buddy Viruddha Pakshikaya last week, as he has attempted to paint a bleak-and false-picture of Sri Lanka below President Mahinda Rajapaksa &#8212 and is already behaving as if the election has been won by Maithripala Sirisena. I&#8217m told that the joint Opposition is currently fighting for portfolios amongst themselves!
My answer to Viruddha Pakshikaya comes in the form of just two words: Tissa Attanayake. Now, I don&#8217t know Tissa personally but this is the man who looked soon after the nuts and bolts of the UNP&#8217s election machinery for the last ten years right after Gamini Atukorale&#8217s untimely demise. Yes, the UNP did not win many (or certainly any) elections in the course of his tenure but with a leader like Ranil Wickremesinghe, that is hardly Tissa&#8217s fault.
Tissa quit the UNP, joined the UPFA, was appointed Overall health Minister and is now a star attraction at UPFA rallies, spilling the beans on what it is like to be in a dysfunctional Opposition. Now, if Tissa believed the Opposition could win, he wouldn&#8217t be carrying out all this, would he? And he should know.
I can almost hear Viruddha Pakshikaya scoffing in response to this, saying that Tissa was only a National List MP who was beholden to the UNP for his seat in Parliament. And my answer to that comes in the kind of an additional two words: Udaya Gammanpila.Now, right here is a bright young man with a political future ahead of him. Even even though he was from the JHU, he obviously attracted adequate SLFP votes to emerge second in the preference votes at the current Western Provincial Council election. And he also &#8220rejoined&#8221 the UPFA campaign last week.
He had left the UPFA a handful of weeks ago to join the Maithripala Sirisena campaign. What he saw there frightened him so considerably that he came running back to the UPFA. His explanation was that he couldn&#8217t be component of a Government that incorporated Ranil Wickremesinghe and Chandrika Kumaratunga.
Viruddha Pakshikaya accuses me of not receiving &#8216good grades for history at school&#8217. Let me enlighten him on a little bit of recent history if he is the pundit in history: let us don’t forget, shall we, the last time when Wickremesinghe and Kumaratunga have been in the exact same Government? She was President, he was Prime Minister. It was 2001.
Kumaratunga complained bitterly about how she was treated by the UNP Cabinet. She was accused of bringing a video camera in her handbag by Ravi Karunanayake. Kumaratunga took over three portfolios whilst Wickremesinghe was gallivanting in Washington. There was chaos all around. That was the cohabitation Government we had.
Tell me, Viruddha Pakshikaya, is that the state of cohabitation to which you want us to return to? And this time about, there are even a lot more men and women than just Wickremesinghe and Kumaratunga pulling Maithripala&#8217s puppet strings: Sarath Fonseka, Champika Ranawaka and perhaps even the JVP and the TNA.
Viruddha Pakshikaya has two major complaints about President Rajapaksa continuing in office: the part played by his family and his alleged persecution of so-called &#8216opponents&#8217 such as Sarath Fonseka, Mangala Samaraweera, the JVP and Shirani Bandaranayake. It appears as if Viruddha Pakshikaya wants to refresh his memory.
Family politics is part of South Asian politics. That is why, for most of its history, the UNP was led by the Senanayake-Jayewardene-Wickremesinghe clan and why it was identified as the Uncle Nephew Party. The Bandaranaikes led the SLFP for fifty years so maybe it is now the Rajapaksas turn.
As for the &#8216persecution&#8217 of opponents, Sarath Fonseka is totally free to say what he wants and campaign for Sirisena only because he was pardoned by the President! About Bandaranayake, the CJ 43 as her supporters like to get in touch with her, I do recall the UNP maintaining that Parliament was above the judiciary, when her impeachment came prior to the House!
And just so that our readers don&#8217t miss the point, let me add that Maithripala Sirisena was a part of all those decisions: he raised his hand to impeach CJ Bandaranayake, to pass the 18th Amendment, to encourage crossovers to preserve a majority in Parliament, so why has he abruptly woken up from slumber now?
The answer is that Sirisena and these pulling his strings believe there is a shortcut to energy. They consider &#8212 incorrectly, of course &#8212 that the men and women would reject President Rajapaksa basically simply because he has been in office for two terms. The people of this nation, Viruddha Pakshikaya, are smarter than that. And they are a grateful individuals, as properly.
The decision just before them is, in truth, really simple. A single, a leader with a confirmed track record who won a war that all of his predecessors lost, and jump began the economy which under Chandrika Bandaranaike when got a record zero per cent development. The other, just a representative of an array of political forces whose only frequent ground is their dislike for President Mahinda Rajapaksa.
The outlandish items they say are hilarious. For instance, Chandrika claims she won 75 per cent of the war. The lady who wanted to bring LTTE representatives into the P-TOMS soon after the tsunami, and give them &#8216Federalism&#8217 through a &#8216package&#8217 and an ISGA (Internal Self-Governing Agency) says she won 75 per cent of the war. You don&#8217t win 75 per cent of the war. You need 100 per cent of the war, and that is what our President did.
Take Maithripala Sirisena&#8217s manifesto released this week. Viruddha Pakshikaya, if you can recognize the English in which it is written, you will see what a hoax it is. They are nothing about nothing. It&#8217s all wishy-washy stuff. It is a riddle wrapped in a mystery inside an enigma.
So, as Viruddha Pakshikaya himself says, the end is nigh not for the President but for Sirisena and his accomplices. For them, the writing is on the wall, not only metaphorically but actually as effectively, if 1 have been to assess common support making use of the posters for the respective candidates as a barometer!
I do agree with Viruddha Pakshikaya that come the eighth of January, there will be a &#8216maithree paalanaya&#8217 but sadly for him, it will not be headed by Maithripala. It will be headed by Mahinda Rajapaksa who will govern with maithree or loving kindness, even to Maithripala and his achcharu coalition.


Sri Lanka’s Presidential Elections: Thoughts for the Floating Voters/New Voters on the Frequent Candidate

The floating voters and the new voters are two crucial segments in the arithmatic that would determine who would emerge as President in January 2015. The floating voters are individuals who may have at a single time voted for distinct parties and now disgusted with voting and contemplating whether to vote or not. The new voters clearly excited about working out their initial time voting appropriate may possibly also be puzzled to figure out who to vote for &#8211 the incumbent President or a contender in an alliance that will be President for one hundred days and thereafter hand energy over to one more.&nbspThe floating voter and new voters are crucial due to the fact they can realistically view the campaign slogans from a point of view that would query&nbspwhich candidate is most suited to lead the nation and provide peace and stability to Sri Lanka each at local and international level, which is what all voters require to consider about just before they place their vote.
What is important about the challenge to the incumbent in the type of a new alliance is that it is promising Change &#8211 but this modify getting promised is by a same set of politicians who have been in politics, enjoyed perks and privileges of workplace, crossed more than a number of times and have had to tag on to larger political parties for survival at distinct periods under diverse leaders. On the face of it there is no Adjust as the men and women coming forward with the modify mantra are the same politicians wanting to hold on to energy below a new set of guidelines and conditions.&nbsp&nbsp
You want modify &#8211 But what is the Adjust you are acquiring?
  • The very same people are appearing with a distinct theme
  • The very same individuals are singing a diverse song
  • The exact same folks are promising a difference &#8211 but their terms in workplace was absolutely nothing the country could be proud of
  • Can the identical people be trusted when they had broken our trust some much more than as soon as?
  • Do you trust Chandrika? Do you trust Ranil? Do you trust Mangala? Do you trust Wickramabahu? Do you trust Sambanthan? Do you trust Champaka R? Do you trust Rajitha? Can you trust Maithri? &#8211&nbspCan they be trusted to entrust the country with 20m men and women to safeguard?
  • If the same faces that held energy and want to continue power are lining up to guarantee modify, do you seriously think they can bring about adjust. More importantly is the alter they are promising, the adjust that YOU want to see?
  • Is the risk worth taking in wanting to vote for Alter but knowingly voting for people who have been verified failures in workplace?
  • A lot more importantly these failures are at the moment taking a back-office part due to the fact they cannot come out before the men and women to contest on their personal nevertheless, floating voters and new voters require to comprehend that a future Maithri Government will place all of them in Ministerial roles and these are the quite folks who were failures in office.
    The ambiguity &#8211 Maithripalanayak for one hundred days and what thereafter?
  • The 1st&nbspimportant thing that floating voters/new voters need to note is that the Opposition lobby was one particular designed not amongst them or by them but by an additional secret group due to the fact the primary Opposition party&#8217s Leader the present Opposition Leader cannot win elections. He will neither step down as Leader of the Party nor modify the celebration&#8217s Constitution even though he wishes to alter the country&#8217s Constitution for which he went to get trained in the US.
  • The 2nd&nbspimportant point is that no person or celebration or parties can form an alliance and contest without drawing the UNP offered its conventional vote base.
  • The threerd&nbspimportant point is the assurance that in exchange for the UNP votes contributing alongside the votes of others forming the new alliance, the deal is for the UNP leader to be handed power hence the one hundred day story. Why is it then that the election manifesto, campaign slogan all speak of a &#8216Maithri&#8217 &#8211 Compassionate &#8216palanayak&#8217 only below Maithri &#8230. Shouldn&#8217t&nbspthe campaign be a joint Maithri-Ranil palanayake? Is it not for this purpose together with certain slip ups by non-UNP supporters in the Maithri wing tilted a lot more towards CBK that they are starting to wonder whether Ranil or the UNP will have a future or function if Maithri had been to emerge President and Maithri would choose tutelage below CBK instead.
  • If Maithripala Sirisena can not win with no the UNP votes, why need to the UNP voters vote a non-UNP when they easily have people to prop up as a contestant instead of Ranil.&nbspIf absolutely everyone was surprised at the meek-searching former General Secretary of the SLFP emerging as a Presidential Candidate what is the harm in fielding a UNP candidate as there are enough of charismatic and sturdy personalities inside the celebration to pick from? Why have none of the other UNP leaders becoming deemed to be groomed as Presidential candidate? Is it because Ranil would lose his place in the Party as a result so he prefers hiring an outsider?
    Do you trust the Opposition Camp?

  • Can you entrust the country&#8217s stability to the exact same faces that have been confirmed failures in leadership roles?
  • Can we be assured that the peace and stability that at the moment prevails will continue beneath their leadership?
  • Can we envisage choice generating when all of them can&#8217t agree on anything except wanting to somehow come into power.
    What will bickering amongst these element result in when it comes to crucial international matters where forthright, stern and nation-centric choices demand to be taken?
  • When some in the camp are for division of the nation, some want devolution, some want separatism, some want foreign powers to manage the country, some will siphon of everything for profit and some are prepared to go along with anything because all they want to do is enjoy perks and privileges &#8211 what is this scenario most likely to lead to for the country?
    An essential issue for floating voters/new voters to take note of &#8211 no Conspiracy theories
  • The Presidential Election is about voting for a leader that can bring stability and peace to Sri Lanka and handle the international lobby against the nation. The critical point is that the nations that are punishing Sri Lanka for ending the war utilizing their influence in the UN/UNHRC are the really nations that are behind the Common Candidate.
  • What is the likely danger if such people are prepared to give every little thing and anything on the deal that they would be kept in energy &#8211 these are no laughing or exaggerated scenarios for the quite nations backing the typical candidate have been effective at dividing Yugoslavia to pieces, creating an independent Kosovo and then leaving the people in chaos, arming insurgents in nations that they want stakes in so that the folks are kept embroiled in eternal conflict although they escape with the loot (Iraq, Afghanistan, Sudan and now Libya prime examples) These are definitely no conspiracy stories. These nations have been destroyed by the extremely nations that are these days responsible for choosing a candidate calculating the arithmatic on how votes are most likely to sway on paper unless folks are informed adequate to comprehend the dangers.
  • Considerably as most voters may possibly hate informing themselves of what is taking place about the planet and to nations around the world in certain smaller sized establishing nations that are strategically placed advantageous for worldwide geopolitics, it is time they ought to specifically the Colombo and other urban voters. It is the realization of the gameplans and plots taking spot about the globe at a political level that a country needs a robust leader and a robust government minus tiny parties with modest vote bases but with the ability to hold a coalition to ransome by their demands.
    Is the country protected in the hands of individuals who have lead the nation just before and failed?
    If we have not forgotten we want to now recall that
  • Far more than half of total soldiers deaths occurred for the duration of the reign of Mrs. Chandrika Kumaratunga, most battle failures took place under her reign.
  • She was collectively with Ranil Wickremasinghe ever prepared to sign the PTOMs and ISGA whereby legalizing eelam in all but name allowing LTTE to negotiate straight with foreign nations, trade straight with foreign nations, transfer funds straight and so on.
  • Ranil Wickremasinghe the supposed visionary of the UNP signed a ceasefire agreement with the LTTE with no even displaying the UNP leadership the contents of that agreement &#8211 only later the nation came to know that the agreement legally allocated sovereign territory as LTTE regions and the Colombo backers of the CFA were not bothered about what allocation of territory to the LTTE would imply to the country because they had been more than the moon that the military checkpoints had been removed which was more of a hassle for them. We can’t afford to function with such quick-sightedness for the harm is irreversible.
    Do you believe the slogan &#8216we will finish corruption&#8217?
    Please keep in mind that the men and women now claiming to have come collectively to finish corruption have themselves proven records of mass scale corruption in the course of their tenure in energy even these that have crossed over. They as well have families &#8211 siblings and youngsters very a lot waiting in the fray to take over. The Adjust will only be changing the Cover of Corruption only. We must all be realistic to the truth that corruption is embedded in right now&#8217s society &#8211 even &#8216donations&#8217 for college admissions are corruption, even giving Rs.100 to the office peon to spot one particular&#8217s file above the rest is an act of corruption, even bribing the policemen for visitors violations is corruption. Both giver and taker are therefore guilty.
    The golden rule on integrity
    Any individual claiming to be virtuous and uncorrupt can do so ONLY IF they go against coruption when it is taking spot and come out against it by claiming to want to have no element in it. No 1 can claim to be uncorrupt if they have been enjoying privileges themselves and then getting been chosen as Opposition Candidate point fingers forgetting that four fingers point back at them in return. Let us all note that all those now pointing fingers were quite considerably part of the corruption that they are accusing of &#8211 if they themselves have been people of integrity they should have come out ahead of elections have been announced and ahead of they had been chosen to be fielded to kind the Opposition.
    If we know that
  • Corruption wont finish
  • We don&#8217t know who the actual leader is &#8211 Maithripala is coming as the Presidential Candidate of the New Democratic Front, he next says he&#8217s going to abolish the Presidency (completely ignoring that he has no mandate to do so), he says he&#8217s going to appoint Ranil (unclear how that can take place also), then CBK who is politically now a nobody is assured of a function, the other supporters have all ruined the ministeries that they had been holding whatever celebration they had been in &#8211 is this a rosy image post-2015 for the individuals? There are far more concerns than answers!
  • How can Modify come about with the same individuals in a new camp specifically when they have a history of crossing back and forth for OPPORTUNITISM and absolutely nothing else. Must we not ask no matter whether this is also not an OPPORTUNISTIC decision and thus the camp have no typical agenda to serve the people except serve themselves
    These are just a handful of inquiries for the Floating Voters and New Voters to consider about prior to they cast their vote. It is also very good for them to do a very good background verify on all those in the Widespread Alliance and they question how far they can be trusted to lead a nation and guarantee Sri Lanka remains peaceful and stable as it has been since 2009 devoid the threat of terrorism and separatism. Two aspects that Sri Lanka does not want is Terrorism or Separatism/Division below any name.

    Shenali D Waduge


Election 2015: Our selection

Given what we know of the Opposition&#8217s declared approach and policy at this stage, I am unconvinced that we should vote Mahinda Rajapaksa out. Adjust is required even imperative. But what type of modify, where, when and to whom? There is a case for peaceful democratic regime change, but what has the current Rajapaksa regime to do with the decades older Executive Presidential technique, which is a kind of state?

The present decision in Sri Lanka &#8211 and the answer to those vital questions &#8211 is excruciatingly straightforward. On 10 December, International Human Rights Day, Sirisena addressed a civil society coalition and assured it (and the nationwide tv audience) that he &#8220was searching for to occupy the chair of the presidency not for the goal of remaining in it but precisely for the objective of abolishing its power and going home.&#8221&nbsp
Now this was throughout the exact same television newscasts that showed the correct nature of the place and the persons he was pledging to transfer the power of the Presidential chair to, namely the parliamentarians who just before our quite eyes, and at that quite time, have been engaging in a game of musical chairs! So, if we are to trust Sirisena&#8217s pledge, we can anticipate the disempowerment of the Presidential chair (and its occupant, to wit, Sirisena), which is anchored in the democratic consent of the majority of our citizenry (50.1% of the vote), and the empowerment of an institution susceptible to musical chairs.
Who is to say that in a post-Mahinda period, a hung parliament barely topped by a self-enfeebled presidency with residual executive powers will not be susceptible to decisive manipulation by a concerted infusion of money from the secessionist network of the Tamil Diaspora? Who is to say that such a maneuver by the Diaspora Tamil Eelamists will be unable to engineer a government of its decision which will pledge the withdrawal of troops from the North?
In the new configuration as created by the Opposition&#8217s strategists, domestic and external, the residual presidency of Sirisena will not and structurally cannot be the decisively preeminent power center. It will be the PM and the Cabinet. The dominant political poles of attraction are far more than likely to be Ranil Wickremesinghe and Chandrika Bandaranaike Kumaratunga.&nbsp
One doesn&#8217t have to be Hobbesian (though it assists) to concur that the principal duty of the state towards its citizenry is not very good governance so considerably as the more fundamental existential one particular of the protection of life and limb from a violent, determined, ruthlessly marauding enemy. Chandrika and (a lot more so) Ranil miserably failed that most essential test whilst Mahinda Rajapaksa passed it with flying colors.
He protected this nation and its men and women, liberating us from Prabhakaran&#8217s reign of terror. Therefore as a student of politics, I can’t advocate an outcome that sends Mahinda Rajapaksa packing although restoring Ranil and Chandrika to prominent positions of energy and influence &#8211 equal to, if not surpassing that of Sirisena. Right after all, Mangala Samaraweera did solemnly declare that it is Wickremesinghe who will be &#8220the 1st amongst equals.&#8221
Wartime indecision
It is correct that Gen. Sarath Fonseka was perhaps the primary driver of the victory insofar as the ground war was innovatively made and determinedly driven by him. It is no less correct that this administration treated him disgracefully.
Even so, an outstanding troika, Generals Fonseka, Janaka Perera and Gamini Hettiaarachchi have been in Chandrika&#8217s army for her two Presidential terms and she failed to win the war &#8211 simply because she didn&#8217t think it could be won that Prabhakaran could be militarily defeated. Or, due to utter ideological and philosophical confusion, she didn&#8217t consider it as desirable.
Mahinda Rajapaksa won the war for us due to the fact he had political will and clarity &#8211 and he had a brother, Gotabaya, who could handle the war effort with zealous dedication and expertise. With each other, Mahinda and Gotabaya have been capable to mitigate the bitter inter-service (Fonseka-Karannagoda) and intra-service rivalries.
In the loop in the early 1990s, I watched helplessly as the Waidyaratne-Kobbekaduwa split paralysed the war work during President Premadasa&#8217s term, while he refused my entreaties to step in and regularly spearhead the National Security Council, asserting that that &#8220we ought to leave it to the experts &#8211 the Tamils should be in a position to see that the Presidency was not straight involved in the war.&#8221
What was the critical moment of the war? It was a replay of that moment in 1987, when the Sri Lankan armed forces were about to prevail over Prabhakaran in Operation Liberation but President Jayewardene received a deterring warning from Higher Commissioner J.N. Dixit. In 2009, President Rajapaksa had two fairly similar moments about which I heard, not only from him, but far far more credibly and at 1st hand, from the Norwegian Ambassador Torre Hattrem and the French Foreign Minister of that time, Bernard Kouchner.
It is Mahinda Rajapaksa who sought India&#8217s backing and overruled the US evacuation attempt which had been facilitated by the Norwegians. A lot more crucially, it is he who curtly told an arrogant, blustering David Miliband that &#8220Sri Lanka is no longer a British colony&#8221 when pressure was put on him for a &#8216humanitarian pause&#8217 in the fighting and a resumption of negotiations, a few weeks prior to our soldiers accomplished final victory. (Kouchner&#8217s story, connected to me and my wife at a lunch in Paris, came as no surprise given that I was element of the discussion in early 2007 when President Rajapaksa told US Assistant Secretary of State Richard Boucher &#8220I am sorry Mr. Boucher, but what can I do if my terrorists are not Islamic?&#8221).
Champika Ranawaka, who claims credit for the drive to finish the war, was not even a peripheral figure in those decisive discussions with the worldwide powers. Gen. Sarath Fonseka was not present in the area. Gotabaya Rajapaksa was in the loop but not on center stage. The selection not to blink and to take the war to a finish what ever the consequences was a political and existential one, and it was produced by President Rajapaksa.
In the final analysis, it wasn&#8217t Gota&#8217s war it was Mahinda&#8217s, and he have to not be made to spend a price tag at our extremely hands for his resolve in our defense and his defiance of the West. The Tamil Diaspora desires revenge for the defeat of their Tigers and the death of Prabhakaran. The West wants to make an instance of Mahinda for far higher stakes: he opted for China and Russia over the West. The two compulsions converge (most overtly in Geneva).
Take into account this very carefully: are we ready to threat the possibility that Rajapaksa could be a 21st century Rajasinha (the last king of Kandy), carted off by the West to be made an instance of i.e. legally lynched, for his defiance in our defense? Do we want that on our collective conscience? Is that how we want future generations to view us? I rather doubt that history will absolve us.
The Joint Opposition&#8217s present plan combines the prospects of radical politico-constitutional change and no much less radical financial change, provided that Ranil Wickremesinghe is an ideologically conservative, neoliberal privatiser and freezer of public expenditure (as confirmed for the duration of his mercifully brief tenure as PM).
Punishing a verified leader
If the contrasting fates of Gorbachev/Yeltsin&#8217s Russia and Deng Hsiao Peng&#8217s China demonstrate anything, it is that political and economic reform have to not proceed simultaneously, if 1 is not to risk meltdown. The scenario of a self-diminished Sirisena Presidency, a shift of energy to a volatile Parliament, an economically neoliberal Wickremesinghe Prime Ministership, a &#8216CBK as Sonia Gandhi&#8217 aspect, an assertive Northern Provincial Council, cosmopolitan civil society-human rights NGO-Western pressures on &#8220cooperation and compliance&#8221 with the UN probe on international law and accountability concerns, and radical privatisation, fill me with foreboding since the centrifugal elements outnumber and outweigh the centripetal ones.
Are we prepared for a Western dominated, semi-colonial Sri Lanka of the sort we lived in for the duration of the Ranil&#8211Chandrika-Solheim years that disgraceful decade of diminished and retrenched national sovereignty? Are we prepared for the inevitable blowback, polarisation and radicalisation?
In its narrow judgment in favor of the 13th Amendment in 1987, Sri Lanka&#8217s Supreme Court ruled that this structural reform, which made for provincial autonomy, remained inside the framework of the unitary state due to the fact of the executive presidency and its powers more than the council as vested in the Governor. Without the magnet or &#8216maypole&#8217 as it were, of the elected executive presidency, the centripetal prospective of the provincial councils would be greater than their centrifugal prospective. This is yet an additional, doubtlessly unwitting, danger posed by the joint Opposition&#8217s stated project.
A presidential election is not about constitutional modify. It is about choosing a leader for the nation, the state &#8211 or more fundamentally, the collective, the neighborhood, the tribe (if you favor an anthropological existentialism).
I am reluctant to dispense with the services of the leader who passed the crucial test of &#8216domestic R2P&#8217 &#8211 the &#8216Responsibility to Safeguard&#8217 his men and women and country from the armed enemy. I hesitate to ditch a sturdy leader and confirmed success in the most crucial matter, and replace him with an unproven if courageous, decent man who will cede a lot of his energy to two established failures.
(Dayan Jayatilleka was Sri Lanka&#8217s Permanent Representative to the UN in Geneva from 2007-09, and until not too long ago, Ambassador to France. He is the author of &#8216Long War, Cold Peace: Conflict and Crisis in Sri Lanka,&#8217 Vijitha Yapa Publishers, 2013.)


Agreements that betrayed Sri Lanka : 2002 Ceasefire Agreement

– by Shenali D Waduge –

Winning hearts and minds of terrorists, mentality of surrender, advocating theory of &#8220unwinnable war&#8221 and policy of appeasing, decreasing the nation to a pariah state, knowingly giving a terrorist organization status on par with a sovereign state and a democratic government had been the traits of those led by Ranil Wickremasinghe that went on to sign the 2002 infamous ceasefire agreement right now described as one of the greatest betrayals of the nation. Ranil Wickremasinghe was the Prime Minister of Sri Lanka who entered into the 2002 Ceasefire Agreement that signed sovereign territory to a terrorist organization so that he could keep in energy.&nbspThe chance provided to Ranil Wickremasinghe to lead Sri Lanka was destroyed by his own folly the nation can not and need to not trust him once again. These that boast of Ranil Wickremasinghe’s vision should take note that this single agreement was detrimental to the country, the folks and the forces and this remains an unpardonable crime never ever to be forgotten.
The supporters of the ceasefire have been those that equated the removal of checkpoints providing them freedom of movement as a victory for freedom and peace to the entire nation. Little did these men and women consider what these &#8220removals&#8221 and carte blanches would ultimately imply to the entire nation.
Lust for power is what we have observed in the manner cross overs are taking place. Men and women have waited for elections to be announced and deals to be struck to cry foul about corruption. Those that hunger for personal glory and international acceptance seldom view what is great for the nation above their private gains. These weaknesses as one ought to view them led to&nbspblindness to the reality of what the 2002 ceasefire agreement actually entailed. The lack of consultation and the total disregard&nbspfor the views of the People of Sri Lanka depicted arrogance of these that hungered for individual glory. The&nbsplessons are that these really protagonists signatory to the agreement and those that praised it and spoke in favor of it are not suited to be entrusted with handling any matters related to Sri Lanka&#8217s sovereignty and territorial integrity &#8211 ever.Regrettably, some of these players continue to hold essential portfolios and continue to sustain the very same mentality and queries these that watch these officials when once more try to dig Sri Lanka&#8217s grave.
It was Kathy Stone writing to the Weekend Liberal in 2002 that exposed how LTTE would have utilised Charles Gnanakone to strike a deal with the UNF Government that led to the 2002 CFA. Incidentally, it was Gnanakone&#8217s brother who smuggled shipments of weapons to the LTTE through our own customs.
It was Ranil&#8217s Chief Negotiator and our present Foreign Minister who went to the extent of requesting the lifting of the ban on the LTTE that his predecessor Mr. Lakshman Kadiragamar worked difficult to achieve. Did we also forget to say that this very same Chief Negotiator and present Foreign Minister known as Anton Balasingham as &#8220Your Excellency&#8221!
It was Subramaniam Swamy who declared that the UNF Government of Ranil Wickremasinghe functioned according to a &#8220Surrender Mentality&#8221 and when the entire show was being led by a Chief Negotiator and present FM we comprehend that very same mentality prevails. The query is did the present Government win a war to succumb to surrender? The bargaining was what was missing on the side of SL at all times throughout the peace talks.&nbspWhy are the Sri Lankan leaders not reading among the lines of the dangers probably to result. GLP referred to as his victory of negotiating the CFA deal with the LTTE a &#8220road map for peace&#8221 &#8211 and yes, he remains our FM, did he meant it or was he told to say so. In our eyes, any person honourable would depart like Mr. Gamini Jayasuriya when he disagreed with the signing of the Indo-Lanka Accord. We have no regard for men and women who cross more than during elections and contact leaders worse than Prabakaran just to please a gallery.
It was Madam Maria Carrilho, Member of the EU Parliament and Head of Parliament Delegation for Relations with South Asia who went on to say that a new autonomous State will emerge as a result of the CFA and a flag and new anthem ought to also be offered and the then PM&#8217s secretary appears not to have even protested against it.
Let us first appear at some essential information:
Date Signed :&nbspCFA MOU signed on 22 February 2002
Signatories :&nbspGOSL and LTTE (Ranil Wickremasinghe and Prabakaran) Ranil signed agreement and handed it to Norways Ambassador John Westburg in Vavuniya, although Prabakaran signed in Kilinochchi.

Mediator :&nbspNorwegian Government

  • Ranil Wickremasinghe (then Prime Minister of UNF Government) did not inform his personal cabinet nor the President of Sri Lanka (Chandrika Bandaranaike) of the agreement getting signed.
  • The nationalists viewed the signing as one particular of the greatest betrayals of the nation no different to the signing of the Kotte Kingdom to the Portuguese&nbsp by Don Juan Dharmapala and the signing of the Kandyan Convention on 2 March 1815 to the British. In truth many a time, Ranil Wickremasinghe has been likened to Don Juan Dharmapala!
  • six rounds of talks abroad had been subsequently held among GOSL and LTTE &#8211 all failed.
  • Important was the Karuna-split from LTTE in March 2004
  • Sri Lanka Monitoring Mission were empowered to only tabulate the violations and NOT to stop or punish
Crucial personnel involved in 2002 ceasefire
  • Government Chief Negotiator&nbsp&#8211 GL Peiris
  • Defence Minister&nbsp&#8211 Tilak Marapana&nbsp&#8220I have no intention at all in waging war with the LTTE at the moment. We have embarked on a peace mission and our target today, and my function as Defence Minister, is not to strategy technique to attack but merely to ready ourselves to defend&#8221
  • Secretary Defense&nbsp(Dec 2001) &#8211 Austin Fernando &nbsp 11/02/interview-with-austin- fernando-a-peacetime- secretary-of-defence-in-sri- lanka/
  • Chief Spokesman/Secretary for the UNF&nbsp&#8211 Bradmon Weerakoon later to be the Secretary to the PM and thereon to ICES NGO
  • Head of S L Peace Secretariat&nbsp&#8211 Bernard Goonetilake and Jayantha Dhanapala
  • Deputy Director Common, Peace Secretariat&nbspin Colombo, Dr. John Gunaratne
  • Head, LTTE Peace Secretariat, S. Puleedevan
  • Head, SLMM, Tryggve Tellefssen
  • Army Commander&nbsp&#8211 Gen. Balagalle (25 Aug 2000 &#8211 30 Jun 2004)
  • SL Legal&nbsp&#8211 Lakshman Marasinghe
What the LTTE gained from the CFA Sri Lanka&#8217s sovereignty betrayed
&#183 LTTE violated the CFA on more than ten,000 occasions&nbsp&#183&nbspImpunity for Crimes &#8211 From 22 February 2002 to four February 2006 &#8211 LTTE ceasefire violations quantity 5464.&nbspLTTE killed 174 safety forces personnel and 388 civilians whilst 117 had been attempted murders, 620 abductions, 46 attempted abductions, 106 cases of extortion, 2199 conscriptions, 875 injury to persons, 22 instances of torture, 128 situations of intimidation (GOSL)&#183 February 2002 to April 2005 LTTE had recruited 1200 youngsters to turn into killers
&#183 LTTE granted an official recognition by means of CFA (as very first clause mentions SL State and LTTE as equal stakeholders
&#183 CFA helped legitimize LTTE&#8217s defacto state.
&#183 LTTE cadres had been permitted to freely move throughout Sri Lanka
&#183 LTTE got Ranil to dismantle the Army&#8217s Long Variety Reconnaissance Unit (Athurugiriya Secure Residence) LTTE&#8217s suicide cadres and pistol gangs ended up killing practically all of Sri Lanka&#8217s intelligence units whose names were divulged by the UNF Govt
&#183 LTTE smuggled shipments of arms, sophisticated communication gear through SL&#8217s own customs and there are officials and advisors even with the present Govt who had been accountable for those approvals.
&#183 These smuggled equipment helped LTTE develop an air strip with the asphalt meant for the A9 Highway, assemble small planes
&#183 LTTE even built illegal bunkers in Govt controlled areas
&#183&nbspRanil&#8217s Govt gave LTTE 95% of their Eelaam and the rest the LTTE planned to safe through the ISGA/PTOMS with the former President playing Santa with Sri Lanka.

&#183 Constitutional violation &#8211 for Ranil Wickremasinge to sign an agreement with a proscribed terrorist&#183 The MOU was signed without having the consent of the Individuals of Sri Lanka (much like how the same UNP Govt signed the Indo-Lanka Agreement once again with no the consent of the Individuals)&#183 2002 CFA was truly an unauthorized secret MOU which Ranil Wickremasinghe did not share with his personal cabinet or the President of Sri Lanka
&#183 Equating a terrorist organization with a legally established armed forces of a nation
&#183 Forcing the armed forces to shake hands with terrorists who were killers
&#183 Armed forces were continuously humiliated by LTTE
&#183 Safety Forces restricted to barracks
&#183&nbspThe free of charge access given to LTTE resulted in LTTE assassinating Sri Lanka&#8217s intelligence unit members(violating Post 1 of CFA)
&#183 Maj. Muthalif &#8211 Army intelligence May possibly 31, 2005
&#183 Lt. Col. T. Rizvi Meedin &#8211 Senior Military intelligence
&#183 UNF Government disclosing Sri Lanka&#8217s lengthy range deployment members causing their deaths by LTTE who hunted them down 1 soon after the other&nbsp(Millenium City Athurugiriya)
&#183 Lakshman Kadiragamar &#8211 SL Foreign Minister assassinated
&#183 Lt. Gen. Parami Kulatunga &#8211 Deputy Chief of Employees of Army killed
&#183 Journalist Sivaram (Taraki) in Colombo on April 28, 2005 killed
Write-up 1: The Modalities of the Ceasefire Agreement
&#183 Neither celebration to engage in any offensive military operation (total cessation of all military action &#8211 inclusive of ambushes, assassinations, abductions, destruction of civilian or military property, suicide missions, activities by deep penetration units, aerial bombardments, offensive naval operations,
&#183 SL army can continue to perform genuine job of safeguarding the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Sri Lanka with no engaging in offensive operations against the LTTE
&#183&nbspSeparation of Forces:
o&nbsp&nbsp Forward defense locations &#8211 GOSL and LTTE can hold their ground positions sustaining separation of 600metres, movement attainable but an absolute minimum distance of 400metres to be kept among them.
&#183 GOSL and LTTE to provide details to the Sri Lanka Monitoring Mission (SLMM) concerning defense localities in all regions and SLMM will draw up demarcation lines.
&#183 GOSL and LTTE cannot move munitions, explosives or military gear into area controlled by the other Celebration.
&#183 Tamil paramilitary groups to be disarmed by GOSL.
&#183&nbspFreedom of movement:
  • GOSL and LTTE shall remain in regions under their respective handle
  • Unarmed GOSL troops shall be permitted limitless passage in between Jaffna and Vavuniya using Jaffna-Kandy road (A9)
  • &#8220individual combatants&#8221 unarmed and in plain garments can pay a visit to households and pals below control of GOSL and visits to be limited to 6 days each and every second month.
  • GOSL and LTTE reserve appropriate to deny entry to specified military areas.
  • 50 unarmed LTTE members shall for political work be permitted freedom of movement in areas of North and East dominated by GOSL.
  • one hundred unarmed LTTE members shall be permitted freedom of movement as of D-day +60, and all unarmed LTTE members shall be permitted freedom of movement as of D-day+90.
  • LTTE members to carry ID papers.
  • GOSL has right to deny entry to specified military places
Article 2 : Measures to restore normalcy
  • GOSL and LTTE to undertake self-assurance-constructing measures to restore normalcy.
  • GOSL and LTTE shall abstain from hostile acts against civilian population like acts as torture, intimidation, abduction, extortion and harassment.
  • GOSL and LTTE shall refrain from engaging in activities or propagating concepts that could offend cultural or religious sensitivities. SL Army to vacate all areas of worship that it is occupying.
  • GOSL and LTTE to vacate college buildings
  • A schedule to indicate return of all other public buildings
  • GOSL and LTTE to review safety measures and checkpoints especially in densely populated cities and towns to stop harassment of civilian population (indirectly aiming at reducing Colombo&#8217s high safety checkpoints)
  • GOSL and LTTE to guarantee unimpeded flow of non-military goods to and from the LTTE-dominated areas with exception of particular items.
  • GOSL and LTTE to establish checkpoints at areas on their line of handle to facilitate flow of goods and movement of civilians.
  • GOSL and LTTE to make certain Trincomalee-Habarana road remains open 24&#2157 for passenger site visitors
  • GOSL and LTTE to facilitate extension of rail service on Batticoloa-line to Welikanda &#8211 repairs to be carried out by GOSL.
  • GOSL and LTTE to open Kandy-Jaffna road (A9) to non-military traffic of goods and passengers modalities to be worked out with Norway
  • Easing of fishing restrictions &#8211 but fishing will not be permitted in harbours or approaches to harbours, bays and estuaries along the coast.
  • Norway to appoint Head of Sri Lanka Monitoring Mission (HoM) who will be final authority regarding interpretation of CFA.
  • SLMM to liaise with GOSL and LTTE and report to Norway
  • Head of SLMM to decide date of SLMM&#8217s operations.
  • SLMM will have offices in Colombo, Jaffna, Mannar, Vavuniya, Trincomalee, Batticoloa, Amparai
  • GOSL and LTTE agree that search operations and arrests below Prevention of Terrorism Act shall not take place. Arrests will be beneath Criminal Process Code.
Article three: The Sri Lanka Monitoring Mission
  • To inquire into instances of violation of the Agreement
  • Neighborhood monitoring committee in every of the 6 offices set up shall have 5 members (two appointed by GOSL, two by LTTE and 1 appointed by HoM) the international monitor shall chair committee.
  • The nearby committee shall advise SLMM
  • GOSL and LTTE accountable for protection and security arrangements of all SLMM members.
  • SLMM shall have access to locations exactly where violations take spot
  • SLMM to take instant action on complaints produced by GOSL or LTTE
Article four : Entry into force, amendments and termination of the Agreement
  • GOSL and LTTE to notify consent to be bound by the Agreement by means of letter to the Norwegian Foreign Affairs Ministry.
  • Agreement could be amended and modified by mutual agreement
  • Termination of agreement can be offered by either Party to Norway inside 14 days of advance notice.
The quantity of violations committed by the LTTE was well more than 10,000 as a lot of of these have been not even tabulated. The LTTE violations integrated constructing new positions, firing weapons, moving military equipment, deploying weapons, carrying out offensive naval operations, illegally transporting arms and committing hostile acts against civilians which integrated intimidation and abductions of adults and children &#8211 &nbspevery clause of the agreement violated by the LTTE and not a hum from even Norway or SL Government that signed the agreement.
The quite reality that these signatory agreed to place LTTE a terrorist organization in par with a democratic government itself is shameful and allowing LTTE totally free movement and the capacity to practically redraw their boundaries only sums the fact that there is no better word to describe these protagonists of the ceasefire than &#8220traitors&#8221.

These are factors not to trust Ranil Wickremasinghe. His vision, his competencies and skills&nbspaside the 2002 agreement was signed with LTTE in secret and his personal Ministers were clueless and that does not give the folks any self-assurance as a result of his conduct even so likable a particular person he is. The country and the individuals can not be entrusted to him&nbspespecially in the manner he has put Maithripala to contest on his behalf till he takes over after 100 days. It is these variables that are becoming viewed by the majority of the folks.


Who will rule? A query from an undecided voter

article_imageBy Dr Dayan Jayatilleka

Like the majority of my fellow citizens I am an undecided voter.My father Mervyn de Silva employed to characterize me slightly critically, as “a Romantic”, and the romantic in me would like to vote for change. But right now, I can’t make that decision because the Realist in me raises a basic question: “who rules?” Or rather, who would rule, if Mr. Sirisena wins?Sadly, the answer to that question is not “Mr. Sirisena, would, of course”. That is due to the fact Mr. Sirisena has told us categorically that he would abolish the executive presidency inside one particular hundred days. He has also told us that he would appoint Mr. Ranil Wickremesinghe as Prime Minister, when he could have stated rather that the Prime Ministership would be provided to the UNP (the party, not the individual). In addition, as Maithripala&#8217s media conference and far more tellingly his homage at the Bandaranaike Samadhi tells us, President Chandrika Bandaranaike Kumaratunga would be a crucial player in the bloc that succeeds Mahinda Rajapaksa.

So the question&#8212and it is the most fundamental query of politics&#8212 remains: Who will rule? We know who will not rule, namely Mr. Mahinda Rajapaksa. Is that excellent sufficient? Is that enough to make a choice to vote for Maithripala? Not for me, and I daresay, not for the majority of our citizens. That may have been sufficient if the President have been quite as unpopular as President Jayewardene in his last few years in workplace. But that is not the case with Mahinda. Additionally, even in the case of JRJ, the voter was fastidious about whom we would replace him with&#8212Sirima Bandaranaike or Ranasinghe Premadasa? In brief, would we go back to the bad old days of &#821770-&#821777, or forward to a socially fairer future?

If Maithripala Sirisena actions down after abolishing the presidency in a hundred days or anytime, who would lead this nation and how would that particular person be chosen? Beneath the executive presidency energy resides in the hands of the institution occupied by the person who has won a majority of the votes of the citizens of this island taken as a single whole. Following the abolition of the presidency that would not be the case. If executive energy has been transferred to the Prime Minister, then the nation would be led by an individual who has not been elected by the majority of our citizens but by those of a single electoral unit, a district&#8212which is a far more narrowly restricted base. Is that what we want? Undoubtedly I do not.

If the selection is between the Presidency as it is,and a reformed Presidency which is significantly less centralized and top-heavy, I would definitely opt for the reformed version. If however the selection is amongst the existing presidency and no executive presidency at all and an executive Prime Ministership as an alternative, I would reluctantly take my possibilities with the status quo.

That is a rather abstract decision, but there is a far more concrete one to be created. If we vote in Mr. Sirisena and he is no longer the occupant of the workplace we voted him into because he has abolished it, and as an alternative Mr. Ranil Wickremesinghe is the Prime Minister with executive powers (as they proclaim on the UNP platform), then the closest approximation of an answer to the query &#8216who will rule?&#8217 becomes clear: the PM, to wit, Mr. Ranil Wickremesinghe. Mr.Sirisena has currently sought permission to address him as “Sir”. Naturally, no leader of a nation will address Mr. Wickremesinghe as “Sir” if he hopes to remain the leader de jure of the country. It is also apparent that Mr. Wickremsinghe is and will be in an alliance with Ms. Chandrika Bandaranaike Kumaratunga, whom Mr. Sirisena calls “Madam”.

So it will no longer be Mahinda Rajapaksa, who as a President elected by our votes does not and will not get in touch with Ranil “Sir” and Chandrika “Madam”, who will rule us. Rather, soon after Mr. Sirisena has accomplished his job as “an interim President” as Mano Ganeshan has accurately termed it, it is “Sir” and “Madam” who will jointly rule this nation, as they so splendidly did from 1994 to 2005. Is that really the adjust we want? Is that the alter we seek and deserve? Pardon me if I have second thoughts.

Adjust is required. Iran necessary a moderate nationalist in the kind of Dr. Hassan Rouhani, to re-set relations with the West. He beat the nominee of the hawkish populist, Mr. Ahmadinejad. But what if Dr. Rouhani had pledged to step down in a hundred days and bring back the Shah or a member of the deposed pro-Western monarchy? Mr. Sirisena&#8217s pledge to abolish the Presidency whilst creating Ranil the PM, and worse still the written pledge reported in the Sunday Occasions to the effect that he will hand over executive powers to Ranil within 24 hours, smacks of a restorationist project to bring back the ancient regime of Chandrika-Ranil. Churchill was defeated by Attlee. What if Attlee has promised to bring back Neville Chamberlain and step down from workplace upon election?

Considerably as I would like to think otherwise and unless I am convinced to the contrary by what Mr. Sirisena may do by or on Nomination Day, my lucid Realism overcomes my Romanticism and tells me that the true decision right here is not Maithripala versus Mahinda, but precisely the following: “do we prefer Ranil and Chandrika to Mahinda (with his clan)?” I have to confess that I for one particular am not convinced that the former mixture is the a lot more desirable. Nor do I think that the majority of voters will opt for that duo, any far more than the majority of Russian voters (who are provincial and patriotic) would have opted for the return of a combination of Yeltsin plus Gorbachev, over Putin.

I am inclined below the current circumstances, to choose the &#8216containment&#8217 of the Mahinda Rajapaksa presidency, to his electoral overthrow. As a result, unless the Opposition discourse, agenda and trajectory are substantially re-set, I shall content material myself with wishing Mr. Sirisena good luck, hoping he provides Mahinda a real run for his cash, and merely staying home. As would seem to be the case with the JVP, my hopes for alter are almost certainly greatest transferred to the parliamentary election.


Gambling for a Common Candidate as Sri Lankan President and Global Leader

The Widespread Candidate Search Group all agree for the want for a Widespread Candidate but for months on now they are in a twist who to decide on. As for the voters of Sri Lanka, what is critical when casting their vote is to recognize how far they want change, what that change is probably to result for the country and whether any reversal of the gains are most likely to outcome in bringing about that adjust. It becomes all the much more important that our choice of leader for Sri Lanka needs to be looked much more upon the capacity to defend Sri Lanka from the worldwide sharks than just wearing the crown of President of Sri Lanka. The contenders all of whom had held leadership roles in the previous it is very good to appear back and take cognisance of how far they have truly protected and guarded the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Sri Lanka. If they have not they do not deserve any location in re-contesting to repeat their felonies.
Candidate 1: Ranil Wickremasinghe
Gambling with the prospects of
  • Winning UNP votes (significant quantity although let&#8217s not overlook that there are some UNP voters who put their brains before their hearts and place the interest of the nation very first. They have completed so in the past and they are probably to be the essential decider for this election)
  • Winning Muslim votes (considerable number of commercially inclined Muslims who think that only the UNP is capable of drawing Western investments. Lets not neglect that a huge quantity of rural Muslims did not vote for the UNP or the Muslim Congress at the last election)
  • Winning Tamil votes (the Northern and Southern votes assured as has always happened)
  • Winning the Christian/Catholic votes (these votes are now split in half and there are again massive numbers of individuals who put brains ahead of heart and vote and generally large numbers of urban voters end up not going to vote as well)
  • Not wanting to win the Buddhist vote (this has been a recognized fact. UNP have never cared to modify the status quo and as an alternative preferred to woo the non-majority voters only &#8211 a mathematical hara kiri)
  • Will people keep in mind or care to bear in mind
    • The betrayal of the nation and the soldiers as effectively as over 60 intelligence officers in agreeing to sign an agreement not shared with even his crucial Ministers? (Cease Fire Agreement of 2002)
    • The appeasement and subservience towards Western domination most likely to leave Sri Lanka as a servant state with a puppet leader and bring down the nation and reverse all that we have gained post-conflict?
    • The capacity to actually lead the nation when demands of the majority populace are purposely ignored in UNP policies is a essential obstacle
    • What has Ranil completed for Sri Lanka in 40 years of politics &#8211 Is 30 election losses an achievement!
Candidate 2: Chandrika Bandaranaike Kumaratunga
Gambling with the prospects of
  • Winning support of the current Ministers in the UPFA as a support base and cross more than
  • Winning help of the majority Buddhist bloc aligned to organizations now calling for the abolition of the Presidency &#8211 aim to divide the Buddhist vote
  • Winning help of the UNP vote base as widespread candidate
  • Winning support of the Muslim vote base as frequent candidate relying on Muslim Congress assistance
  • Winning help of the Tamil vote base as common candidate assured of TNA assistance
  • Winning help of the Christian/Catholic vote base as typical candidate
  • Winning the JVP insignificant vote base by way of buddy Mangala
  • Will folks keep in mind or care to remember
    • The beeshana period below each her terms
    • Now promises finish to corruption &#8211 Lest we overlook – The &#8216chowra rajina&#8217 Bandit Queen allegations and Water&#8217s Edge verdict
    • Now promises Rights for Girls – women supporters of the UNP stripped naked and forced to march along the street below her rule
    • Didn&#8217t she pledge to take away the Executive President in six months in 1994 and stayed on for two terms!
    • She did promise Prabakaran to enable him to rule the Northern Province for 10 years with no elections!
    • We are now told she has bowed out of the Frequent Candidate race &#8211 there&#8217s also the possibility to adjust one&#8217s mind as well!
The web comments are fairly interesting and reveal the views of men and women for other prospective Widespread Candidates
Anura Kumara Dissanayake&nbsp&#8211 able to drag Sri Lanka into stoneage. Lets also don’t forget that all the individuals they killed were Sinhala Buddhists and not a single LTTE terrorist!
Sarath Fonseka&nbsp&#8211 Revenge mantra will lead to doom but folks like to hear some &#8216kalawedda&#8217 stories!
Sajith Premadasa&nbsp&#8211 All Talk No Action
Sobitha thero&nbsp&#8211 Referred to as Mr. by some and that says it all! The thero promises he will hold forte for six months if elected and then abolish the Executive Presidency &#8230. Related story was told by that trishaw driver to Sirisena Cooray at the Municipality Elections but refused to step down thereafter!
Karu&nbsp&#8211 A Journalist claimed he was bribed Rs.50,000 per month for publicity! Not a great commence for a Common Candidate
Arjuna&nbsp&#8211 Major Sri Lanka and representing Sri Lanka on world political stage is no game of cricket!
The widespread candidate confusion can’t erase and in fact has raised men and women&#8217s doubts of how the country can be led when the parties vying to pick a typical candidate have however to pick one and they have been on the job for quite some time now. Just think about how decisions might be taken right after their Widespread Candidate gets elected and the disagreements likely to arise provided the ideological and other political agendas each and every of the common candidate group are all aligned to. How a lot of promises and pledges need to be taking location for the assistance of each and every group, what are their demands to canvass their folks for votes, will the frequent candidate President be in a position to give in to all these demands and will he/she actually honor these demands or will all this finish up in further chaos for the nation &#8211 these are factors that Sri Lanka&#8217s voters be they Sinhalese, Tamil Muslim, Burgher, Buddhist, Hindu, Christian/Catholic, Islam or atheists and agnostics will need to consider about Before they cast their vote!
Even though the common candidate group are busy choosing a candidate it is great for voters to think about their selection as well and most of all think about what Sri Lanka is most likely to be like if their selection of typical candidate wins and he/she can&#8217t or won&#8217t honor the promises created to appear as typical candidate.
It is also a very good time for the general public too to recognize that every of us individually have a greater function to play and are ourselves accountable by our actions for taking the country forward or backwards &#8211 the blame can not always be placed on the doorstep of the politicians.
&#8220A Leader is a single who knows the way, goes the way and has shown the way&#8217.

&#8220Aspirants for that function are those who don&#8217t know the way, have gone the wrong way and can&#8217t show the way&#8221.


Legal Marriage Age Changed to 7 for Muslim Girls from a Gazette Notification?

New Gazette&nbspnotification&nbsphas come final month.

Here is the government site hyperlink:

Read meticulously…above age of 12 years, Quasi does not have to approve. Below age of 12 years, Quasi has to approve. Quasi can approve up to age of 7 years.

Isn’t this a violation of girls and youngsters rights and all the accepted norms of a civilized society? This law has to be changed to 18 years as with the typical law in Sri Lanka.


Defence Seminar 2013: Secretary Defence Mr. Gotabaya Rajapaksa’s vision for Sri Lanka

Making the keynote address at the 3rd consecutive Sri Lanka Army organized ‘Defence Seminar-2013 on the theme ‘Post-Conflict Sri Lanka: Challenges and Regional Stability’, held from 3rd to 5th September at the Galadari Hotel, Colombo, Secretary Defence Mr. Gotabaya Rajapaksa delivered a spectacular and visonary speech to the more than 300 participants including 66 foreign delegates from 29 countries.
The 1st Defence Seminar focused on Lessons Learnt by the Sri Lankan Defence establishment in defeating LTTE terrorism.
The 2nd Defence Seminar focused on Post-war efforts to create lasting peace and stability examining steps under 5 areas of Reconstruction, Resettlement, Rehabilitation, Reintegration and Reconciliation.  
Secretary Defence on Sri Lanka’s immediate post-war challenge successes  
1.         Accommodating and ensuring the welfare of nearly 300,000 Internally Displaced Persons
2.         Demining and Reconstruction of Infrastructure/facilities – nearly of land demined. 
3.         Resettling the IDPs in their places of origin (All IDPs in welfare camps were resettled from October 2009 – August 2012) inclusive of other displaced persons. This achievement took 3 years and 3 months after elimination of LTTE.
4.         Rehabilitating nearly 12,000 ex-LTTE cadres and
5.         Reintegrating them to society.
Independent Surveys 1:
UNHCR survey confirmed Sri Lanka’s resettlement success (Nov 2012-Mar 2013) assessing Sri Lanka against global standard of Inter Agency Standing Committee Framework for Durable Solutions for Internally Displaced Persons – Sri Lanka is mentioned under–
a) access to personal and other documentation without discrimination
b) family reunification
c) access to effective remedies and justice
d) safety and security
e) access to livelihoods
f) participation in public affairs
Note: Only 29% of respondents had negative views on military presence.
Independent Surveys 2:
United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) Field Mission survey (May-June 2013)
§  ‘remarkable improvement in infrastructure development in many sectors including transportation, communication, roads, railways and health facilities’
§  Survey observed that there was no visible presence of armed military personnel in uniforms that military support was primarily for ‘immediate and development needs of the population’ (building houses, shelter, water, sanitation, scholarships for schools and children, vocational training, organizing tours for people of North to visit other parts of Sri Lanka) – efforts to help civilians return to normal life.
Independent Surveys 3: Foreign Researchers/Dr. Kruglanski & Dr. Gelfland of the University of Maryland
§  LTTE cadres showed reduction in support for violence after rehabilitation program
Other successfully completed post-war challenges:
§  Setting up Livelihood Assistance programs
§  Material Assistance programs – donation of fishing gear, utilities for farming, provision of livestock and seeds for agriculture
Secretary Defence on shifting military from combat with terrorists to cooperation with civilians/society:
§  Gradual reduction of military camps/troops but military will remain for strategic security reasons.
§  Engineering battalions engaged in reconstruction and national development programs
§  Redrawing internal security policies and procedures and expanding intelligence units
§  Handing over to police the maintenance of law and order – establishment of more police stations and recruitment of Tamil speaking police personnel
§  Helping restore civil administration mechanism
§  Disarming former armed groups
§  Civilian properties in the process of being handed over once legal proof of ownership is established.
§  Removing restrictions previously placed for security reasons (movement in high security zones, limitation to fishing, restrictions in trade of classified items) Palaly cantonment is open to all with free access to airport and Kankasanthurai harbour.
§  Releasing detainees for involvement in LTTE activities while a handful remains in detention for prosecution. Database of all detainees available with police. Lawyers, family, Human Rights Commission and ICRC given access to them
§  Repealing of Emergency Regulations in August 2011
Secretary Defence responds to allegations against Military : Number of Civilian Casualties
Number of civilian casualties (during final stage of war) ranged from 7000 to more than 40,000. The allegations were all guestimates without sources and ignored independent and credible sources (Dept of Census & Statistics/UNICEF/LLRC).

If LTTE had 30,000 approximate cadres at the start of the Humanitarian Operation and nearly 12,000 surrendered to the Armed Forces either the remaining had been killed, they are posing as civilians or have fled the country.

It must be also noted that Sri Lanka lost nearly 6000 of its personnel in combat while 20,000 or so were injured. Such a number of casualties in the army could not have happened if the enemy was not engaged in intense battle with the Sri Lankan military during the final stages of the war.

Department of Census and Statistics ‘Enumeration of Vital Events’ in Northern Province (June-Aug 2011) field data collected in July 2011 by 2500 Tamil and Muslim Government servants from North. Report revealed:
a.  7896 deaths due to unnatural causes (Jan-May 2009) included LTTE cadres killed in action,
b.  2635 persons reported as untraceable (parents/next of kin had not recovered their bodies or knew their whereabouts)
c.   Of 2360 cases investigations reveal that 1625 persons had been forcibly recruited by the LTTE.
d.  Only 26 instances of people reported by the next of kin who had surrendered to the Security Forces and subsequently disappeared.
Secretary Defence on reasons for civilian deaths/missing  
§  civilians killed by LTTE trying to escape to Govt controlled areas,
§  civilians detained and killed by LTTE for other reasons
§  civilian deaths from being forcefully used in combat by LTTE
§  civilians deaths from crossfire
§  civilians reported dead but likely to have escaped or illegally migrated overseas. An unknown number of persons have left Sri Lanka and are now living overseas. The countries hosting them have not revealed their details to the Government of Sri Lanka.
§  deaths not occurring during Humanitarian Operation but reported to claim compensation
§  false reporting
UNICEF with Probation and Child Care Commission of North and Government Agent of Vavuniya – Family Reunification Project (confirms and corroborates with Sri Lanka’s findings)
§  2564 tracing applications received by July 2011
§  1888 applications related to missing adults
§  676 applications related to missing children
§  64% parents of missing children claimed LTTE had recruited their children.

Those making allegations against the Sri Lankan military may like to explain how any military should confront a non-state actor using asymmetric warfare strategies with no compunctions to safeguard civilian lives and oft times using civilians as human shields in order to attract external intervention and to once again gain themselves breathing space?

Those throwing stones at the Sri Lankan military may also like to explain why LTTE would deliberately and repeatedly launch artillery and mortar attacks at the military from No Fire Zones/ civilian installations like hospitals and churches which were created for the civilians and not for LTTE to place their weapons and ammunition or take refuge amongst the Tamil civilians?

Secretary Defence on Lessons Learnt and Reconciliation Commission Report  
§  LLRC concluded that there was No DELIBERATE targeting of civilians by Sri Lankan Military
§  LTTE responsible for violations of international humanitarian law
Secretary Defence on International Commentaries on Post-Conflict
§  Negative feedback on Reconciliation – lacked holistic perspective did not consider ground realities as reconciliation is a process and takes time to accomplish and cannot give overnight results.
§  Negative feedback ignored type of rule under LTTE – people of the North and parts of East had no democratic freedoms – no room for dissent, no alternate views, everyone disagreeing with LTTE were silenced. People living amongst LTTE were taught to hate the Sinhalese and the State. Removing 30 years of indoctrination inspite of resettlement, reconstruction and even rehabilitation is not easy.
Secretary Defence on Democratic Process in Sri Lanka (contrary to the statement by Navi Pillai claiming Sri Lanka was heading towards an Authoritarian rule)
§  Provincial Council elections held in Eastern Province in 2008 before the Humanitarian Operation ended
§  Local Authority elections for Jaffna Municipal Council / Vavuniya Urban Council in August 2009
§  Presidential Election held in 2010
§  General Elections held in 2010
§  Local authority elections held island-wide in 2011
§  Provincial Council elections to be held in September 2013 – the 1st after 1989 elections of merged North-East province through 13th amendment. North-East demerged in 2006.
Secretary Defence on LTTE-fronts continuing to pose threat to Sri Lanka
§  LTTE’s extensive international network remains intact and their propaganda needs to be effectively countered.
§  Extremist elements within Tamil expat community part of this network
§  Their intent is to divide Sri Lanka
§  Strategies used include winning international opinion for separatist cause, increasing international pressure on Sri Lanka, undermining Government efforts for reconciliation and economic development, attempting to resume conflict by reorganizing local militant activities
§  These LTTE-linked groups influence foreign NGOs, foreign parliamentarians and even fund local groups masquerading as democratic
§  The LTTE international network comprises
a.    Tamil Coordinating Committee based in Norway led by Nediyawan
b.    Transnational Government of Tamil Eelam in US led by Rudrakumaran
c.    LTTE headquarter group in France led by Vinayagam
d.    Global Tamil Forum led by Father Emmanuel who coordinates all above groups.
§  Foreign Service and Foreign Ministry despite lack of resources need to counter by communicating the true picture globally.
Secretary Defence on Threats from Extremist Groups (including those involved in previous insurgencies)
§  Groups attempting to mobilize people to take up extreme left wing causes
§  Groups radicalizing students / the public and encouraging them to take to the streets in protest
§  Increase in communalism amongst ethnic groups – increased insularity of ethnic groups may lead to fragmentation of the Sri Lankan identity into ethno-religious lines
§  Some in the Tamil community who identify more with Tamil Nadu than with fellow Sri Lankans.
§  Some foreign groups encouraging Sri Lankan Muslims to identify themselves with global Muslim community distancing them from integrating with other communities
§  Muslim fundamentalism spreading all over the world and in Asia and concerns Sri Lanka’s Law Enforcement agencies and Security Forces.
§  Extremist groups have been in transit in Sri Lanka and may promote Muslim extremism in Sri Lanka
§  Consequence of increasing narrow-mindedness of minority ethnic groups is emergence of hardline groups within majority community which will lead to further tensions and a vicious cycle affecting overall unity.
Secretary Defence on Organized Crime
§  Rise of terrorism and insurrection required state to procure arms and ammunition some of which have fallen into criminal hands.
§  Rise of underworld engaged in organized crime – drugs, armed robberies, kidnappings for ransom, financial frauds, seizing land illegally are a handful of activities that need to be tackled.
Secretary Defence on Media Freedom
§   Legitimate media channels, newspapers, websites freely operate in Sri Lanka
§   Some illegal sources also engage in false propaganda to damage the country’s image internationally.
§   Negative image campaigning will impact on tourism, foreign investment and even trade
§   Media organizations (every citizen and political group) must exercise their democratic freedoms with responsibility – they should not engage in unlawful activity under the guise of exercising their freedoms.
Secretary Defence on India and Sri Lanka’s strategic geographical location in South Asia
§   Continued inter-linking domestic issues between Sri Lanka and India (India’s sensitivity to events in Sri Lanka due to influence of Tamil Nadu state on Tamil issues especially at times of elections)
§   Bilateral issues – increasing incidents of illegal fishing by Tamil Nadu fishermen on Sri Lankan waters
§   India is the most important and powerful country in South Asia, but Sri Lanka is a completely independent sovereign nation which India is aware of
§   Critical that both India and Sri Lanka retain a meaningful and close relationship despite issues arising between them
Secretary Defence on Sri Lanka’s relationship with China
§  China’s involvement in Sri Lanka is purely diplomatic and economic
§  China has been one of Sri Lanka’s foremost development partners contributing richly to key economic development projects.
§  Sri Lanka’s relationship with China should not be regarded as a threat by any other nation.
Secretary Defence on Regional Issues Sri Lanka faces due to Sri Lanka’s geo-strategic position
§  Asian region becoming increasingly important in global affairs
§  India and China increasing economic and military development bring Asian region into global focus
§  Western Governments may attempt to influence Sri Lanka to align to their interests in the Asian region
§  Power politics between nations will affect Sri Lanka’s relations with these nations.
Secretary Defence on Maritime Security
§   Sri Lanka does not have land borders
§   Sri Lanka does need to protect its maritime security and prevent transnational crimes – drugs, smuggling, arms smuggling and human trafficking, maritime assets within Exclusive Economic Zone, safeguarding Sea Lines of Communication against piracy.
Secretary Defence on National Economy
§   War suppressed economic potential and held back Sri Lanka’s growth
§   History reveals that majority of problems were fundamentally economic (insurrections of 1970s, 1980s even LTTE manipulated economic aspect along ethnic /racial lines)
§   Post-war needs to address unequal development / rural underdevelopment and uplift standard of living in rural areas to standards enjoyed in cities.
§   Establishing highways to connect distant cities – reduce travel time.
§   Rural masses must not feel marginalized or feel economic compulsion to move to cities (education, healthcare, meaningful employment without leaving their places of origin)
§   Need to promote tourism, foreign direct investment, industrial development, value addition in agriculture, service economy
§   Retain talented young people and encourage them to remain in Sri Lanka.
§   Keeping with our traditional way of living develop our agriculture, animal husbandry and seek self-sufficiency.
§   Adapt 5-hub strategy to develop Sri Lanka as a Knowledge Hub, Commercial Hub, Naval and Maritime Hub, Aviation Hub and Energy Hub.
§   Hambantota Port and Mattala Airport is a long term plan to derive economic potential to maximize on volume of ships that pass through the sea lines making the Hambantota region as an industrial and transhipment cargo hub.
Secretary Defence on Sri Lanka’s Future
§  Being able to navigate present issues (national security, geo-politics etc) will determine Sri Lanka’s destiny.
§  Looking ahead positively and confidently without focusing on issues inherited from the past
§  People need to develop mentality beyond that of a developing nation shedding Third World Mentality.
§  All Sri Lankans must accept challenge and move forward together into a shared future as one Sri Lankan nation.
Secretary Defence on Safeguarding Democracy
§  Handling subversive elements from using modern communication technology (internet, global news media, mobile phones etc) to attempting to disseminate wrong information and arouse people negatively.
Secretary Defence on future challenges:
1.    Preventing the re-emergence of terrorism
2.    Establishing effective methods to project Sri Lanka to the international community
3.    Suppressing the emergence of other extremist groups
4.    Preventing further ethnic divisions and communal violence
5.    Challenges of maritime security and border control
6.    Curtailing the growth of organised crime, and
7.    New challenges in safeguarding a just and wholesome democracy.
Secretary Defence on way forward:
§  Secretary Defence on a Government obligations:
o   Ensure national reconciliation is achieved
o   Move Sri Lanka into the future together as one nation without fragmentation into groups based on ethnicity, religion, caste or place of origin.
o   Ensure all Sri Lankans have same opportunities and unobstructed access to state services
o   Ensure Sri Lanka is a peaceful, stable and rapidly development democracy.
o   Holding elections after restoring normalcy to North and East provinces
o   Issues delayed due to terrorism must be attended to
o   Economic issues as a result of global economic conditions need to be solved gradually instead of using them as political slogans.
§  Secretary Defence on People’s obligations:
o   People must move forward as a nation – united by what we have in common.
o   People must not stay locked in a post-conflict mentality
o   People must remove from ‘Third-World Mentality’
o   People must understand freedoms guaranteed through democracy must be exercised with responsibility. Ex: right to public assembly – freedom to demonstrate on issues that they feel are important does not give freedom to engage in violent protest, incite violence or act in other undemocratic ways. Then they would have exploited and abused their democratic freedoms. When this happens other people with vested interests use this to turn the situation to their advantage and project a negative image of the country internationally as well as amongst the locals themselves.
§  Secretary Defence  on Politicians/political Party’s obligations:
Political parties must promote the interests of the nation without focusing on one group
o   Political parties must bring all ethnicities and cultures together into one Sri Lankan identity so that the nation can progress.
o   Main political parties must stop politicizing divisive issues for petty political gain
A fine picture of Sri Lanka’s future was articulated in the key note address by the Secretary Defence covering the immediate post-war challenges, the achievements of the armed forces in their new role of capacity building in cooperation with civilians and society. It has heralded a distinctly unique partnership one that combines the value-added logistical capabilities and discipline of the armed forces with the new challenges that face a Sri Lanka journeying towards a future without terrorism and ushering a new chapter in uniting nations of the Asian continent for regional stability, economic growth and overall a shared future.

Shenali D Waduge