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November 29, 2008

Nov 30 - Dec 6: " They are able because they think they are able." - Virgil ~ Publius Vergilius Maro (October 15, 70 BCE – September 21, 19 BCE) Roman poet

The killing of a Religious leader

A statement by the Rt. Rev. Duleep de Chickera, Bishop of Colombo

The recent killing of a Hindu Priest, Sivasri Subramanyan Kamalraj of the Mariamma Kovil in Batticalao, is a tragic and senseless act and must be condemned by all persons committed to religious values and peace. [FI]

The Muslim Predicament: Between  Clashing Sinhala and Tamil Nationalisms

by Shanie

A. M. A. Azeez was an outstanding Sri Lankan scholar and activist. Hailing from a leading a Muslim family in Jaffna, he had a brilliant academic record at the Jaffna Hindu College and at the then University College from which he graduated in 1933 with an honours degree in History. [TC]

Music Video: Mathangi Arulpragasam - M.I.A.'s 'Paper Planes' Nominated for Record Of The Year

"I came out on some sort of political edge, and I was inspired by the politics that were going on at the time," says M.I.A., who's expecting her first child in February. "I never thought it would get accepted and I was gonna be like, commercially accepted, or accepted by the masses, because that was the point — people who thought like me were outsiders." according to Nekesa Mumbi Moody who wrote this piece for AP on Mathangi Arulpragasam - MIA's Grammy nod: [TC]

Allegations of cluster bombing by Sri Lanka must be investigated

by Col R Hariharan

The Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) have accused the Sri Lankan air force of dropping cluster bombs on an internally displaced persons (IDP) camp in Vanni area on November 29, 2008. According to the TamilNet report three refugees were killed and 29 shelters of displaced persons were destroyed in the air strike. Recordings of oral accounts of those affected are also available on the Internet. The North East Secretariat on Human Rights (NESoHR) and the Tamil Rehabilitation Organisation (TRO), two NGOs who work in the area and are known for their pro-LTTE sympathies, have also published detailed reports of the incident. [TC]

Accountability Of Intelligence Agencies By B. Raman [FI]

Audio Slide Show: Tamil Dance in UK in Pictures [BBC]

Behind the muzzled: voices from a troubed Sri Lanka by Peter Foster [Telegraph.co.uk]

Will India accept total destruction and military surrender of LTTE?

By Ravi Sundaralingam

There is a poignant episode in Mahabarata, where Karuna laid on a bed of arrows stitched to every cell of his body yet, he remained alive because of the Karma due to his giving and sacrifice. [TC]

Sri Lanka Government Abuses Anti-Terror Laws to Muzzle the Media [FI]

Journalist Tissainayagam to get “Reporters without borders” Award [TC]

Sri Lanka: Juggling, dropping, catching, “balls” 

By P. Shanthikumar

Asantha de Mel, who is very good at stopping one ball, was given more balls to juggle with as CPC Chairman. Kept dropping the other two balls, only manage to catch one ball at a time. The foreign bankers as Standard Chartered, Citigroup cleverly flogged the poor cricketer who is only a novice at juggling more than one ball a hedging contract with an open-ended downside risk. [TC]

Prabhakaran Intends To Continue The War by T. Sabaratnam [TC]

The Muslim predicament: some reflections on local and international challenges

by Dr. A.C.M. Ameer Ali

It was during a school holiday weekend in the year 1957 that marhoom Al-Haj Dr. A.M.A.Azeez travelled to Badulla to visit his lifelong intellectual friend and a great poet, the late Abdul Cader Lebbe, who was, at that time, the Head master of the then Government Muslim Mixed School in that town. [TC]

Mumbai attacks and the Muslim question

by Hasan Suroor

India’s “secular” political establishment, barring the Left, has relied on a class of Muslim “leaders,” whose own political interest lies in keeping the community backward-looking. [FI]

East in a state of siege due to escalating violence

By Coalition of Muslims and Tamils for Peace and Coexistence (CMTPC)

One day in the Liberated East: on 25th November, 18 people were killed within 24 hours in Batticaloa District alone. Following a claymore mine attack which killed two Sri Lankan military personnel in Eruvil, 3 members from the same family were killed (grandmother, father and a son) in the village. [TC]

Sri Lanka Government Should Lift Restrictions on UN and Other Groups Now [FI]

Deepak Chopra: Why Mumbai Attacks Happened and Preventing Future Violence [FI]

After Mumbai: Points For Action by B. Raman [FI]

Lankan Tamil resistance and the Mumbai attacks 

by Ilayaseran Senguttuvan

Many in the country draw an analogy of the LTTE and the blast in Mumbai last week. The general perception here is the Indian government is fully supportive of the Tamils plight – and, therefore, asserted support to the LTTE. [TC]

Implementation of genuine regional/provincial autonomy required by Dayan Jayatilleka [TC]

Mumbai terror strike and Prabhakaran's expectations of India's support 

By Col R Hariharan

The Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) chief Prabhakaran's usually much hyped Great Hero's Day 2008 speech on November 27 became a casualty of the daring terror strike on the same day in Mumbai. Holding the city to ransom for three days the terror story hogged headlines and only few of the Indian print media carried Prabhakaran's speech on the sidelines, while the visual media ignored it. [TC]

BBC Radio Play: The Last Time I Saw Richard de Zoysa

Drama documentary about the life and death of the Sri Lankan journalist and TV newsreader Richard de Zoysa, who was abducted and killed in February 1990. [TC]

Deep Penetration Unit Commander Jayasinghe  Killed By LTTE In Oddusuddan Area

The  sri Lankan army’s special force unit  that  operates deep inside  territory controlled by the  Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) received a crucial setback last week when its commander Major.Lalith Jayasinghe was killed by the tigers in the Oddusuddan area of the Wanni northern mainland. [TC]

Sigiriya Heritage Site Must Not Become Gaudy Night Carnival

by Gamini Weerakoon

The Water Gardens of Sigiriya are once again being stalked by ghouls who want to make this unique landscape - a World Heritage Site declared by UNESCO - into a gaudy night carnival. This stunning manifestation of nature's beauty, left to itself for centuries after its ancient monarchs and monks departed, retained its unique features until discovered by the British who in their good sense left it basically untouched for future generations to take in its natural splendo-urs. [TC] 

Impediments In The Way Of Devolving Power To The Periphery 

By Chandra Wickramasinghe

It is necessary for one at the very outset, to unfailingly take full cognizance of the multi-faceted aspects of the problem of devolution of the power of governance to whatever unit decided on by the Centre, as the geographical unit exercising such devolved authority. [FI]

Mumbai: Lessons for the future by B. Raman [FI]

Mumbai attacks: 60 hours of chaos and carnage [TC]

Champika Ranawaka is a "Brown Sahib" Nationalist by Izeth Hussain [TC]

BBC Audio: Uncovering the abduction and killing of civilians in Sri Lanka

BBC's Roland Buerk reports on the lengths to which the Sri Lankan army and its proxies have gone to ensure victory in their war against the Tamil Tigers [TC]

Defiant Prabakaran ready to continue fighting

by D.B.S. Jeyaraj

The nineteenth “Great heroes day” (GHD) was observed by the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) on Thursday November 27th. In recent times the most important event for the LTTE has been its annual ‘Maaveerar Naal’ or “Maaveerar Thinam”held each year. [DM]

Civilians long for elusive peace

Fighting continues in northern Sri Lanka, isolating the region from the rest of the island and displacing civilians repeatedly. Hicham Mandoudi of the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) discusses the organization’s assistance to civilians fleeing the areas affected by the conflict [FI]

Rain and floods add to the missery of IDPs in Vanni

According to the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA), the floods are worst in five districts: Jaffna, Mannar, Kilinochchi and Mullaitivu in Northern province, and Trincomalee in Eastern province. [TC]

Why is Kollywood supporting Lanka Tamils?

by Pushpa Iyengar

When Ajith, a rare Tamil film star who eschews politics, said he'd be skipping the Nov 1 fast the industry was organising in support of the Lanka Tamils, he was in for a shock. [TC]

Prabakaran's speech leaves Sri Lankan state only two alternatives

by Dayan Jayatilleka

Let us forget for a moment that Sri Lanka is a member state of the international community, a fact that is proved by his complaint in the same speech, of the military and diplomatic assistance that Sri Lanka has obtained from members of the international community on precisely that basis. [TC]

What follows after re-taking Kilinochchi?

by Shanie

Government spokespersons have once again claimed that the military is poised to enter Kilinochchi at any moment now. [TC]

November 22, 2008

Nov 23-29: "The best way of losing a cause is to abuse your opponent and to trade upon his weakness" - M K Gandhi

V.P. Singh is dead [Hindu]

India's day of Infamy 

by B. Raman

The war of civilisation between the Muslims and the infidels has begun in Indian territory. [TC]

Full text of 'Great Heroes Day' address 2008 [TC]

Heavy rains delay Awaited Capture Of  Kilinochchi Town

By Sunil Jayasiri

Since the capture of the strategically important LTTE stronghold in the Western flank of the A-9 (Jaffna-Kandy) main road – Pooneryn- the public are anxious and eager to see the Sri Lanka Army hoist the national flag over the Tiger administrative capital – Kilinochchi. [TC]

Army enters Kilinochchi as Tigers withdraw suddenly 

In a sudden and dramatic development the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) withdrew from the heavily fortified northern town of Kilinochchi while soldiers of the Sri Lankan armed forces began moving in cautiously into the town area. [TC]

Threats Increase Concerns for Detained Media Worker and Family in Sri Lanka [FI]

With The LTTE  Eventually Eliminated Who Will Represent The Tamils?

By Apratim Mukarji

There was scarcely any surprise when the pro-LTTE Tamilnet website of Sri Lanka accorded the pride of place in its news items on November 12 to the unanimous resolution adopted by the Tamil Nadu Assembly earlier, calling for a ceasefire in the island nation. [FI]

Prospects for democracy brighter in Sri Lanka than US

by Rohini Hensman

In recent years, America’s claim to be a democracy has been seriously damaged in the eyes of its own citizens. [FI]

Multiple terror strikes by "Deccan Mujahideen" kill 80 and injure 348 in Mumbai (Bombay) [TC]

Floods, Fighting, Food Shortages Hit Trapped Tamils [IPS]

What would Prabhakaran say on Great Heroes Day ?

by T. Sabaratnam

What would  LTTE supremo Velupillai Prabhakaran say tomorrow when he addresses the Tamil people after paying homage  to the 22,000 cadres who died since the armed struggle began in 1982? [TC]

Can Kara in Britain or Shalwar in Lanka deny education?

By M.S. Shah Jahan

She spent nine weeks in isolation in a classroom alone except for a teaching assistant and working from notes which she was instructed to copy. [TC]

Can the Army seize Kilinochchi by LTTE "Maaveerar" Day ?

By D.B.S. Jeyaraj

Even as fierce fighting rages between the Government of Sri Lanka(GOSL) armed forces and the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) in the North the multi – crore rupee question doing the rounds in politico – military circles is whether Kilinochchi town could fall or be taken by November 27th 2008? [TC]

Tamils Still Want  Safety, Security and A Future In This Country

by Rajavarodhayam Sambandan

Excerpts from the speech delivered by R. Sampanthan, Member of Parliament, Trincomalee District and Parliamentary Group Leader, Illankai Tamil Arsau Kadchi (TNA), during the recent Budget Debate [TC]

Human Rights Situation Deteriorating in the East

The Sri Lankan government should take immediate steps to address the deteriorating human rights situation in the country’s Eastern Province, where there has been an increase in killings and abductions in recent weeks, Human Rights Watch said today. [FI]

Trying to negate the rightful claims of ethnic minorities

By Dr. S. Narapalasingam

Recently, two viewpoints have been asserted to negate the basis for settling the ethnic conflict permanently, according to justifiable claims of the ethnic minorities. These resulted from their bitter experiences with the Sinhala majority rule that ignored the diverse ethnic, linguistic and other demographic features of the island nation. [FI]

If Mahinda is Winston Churchill, Ranil is Clement Attlee

by Dushy Ranetunge

In the general election, every vote counts. It would be a grave mistake indeed to think that anyone could carry a general election by playing exclusively to the Sinhala nationalist gallery or a military constituency. [TC]

MHM Ashraff: A "doer" with an innovative approach to politics

by MHM Salman

Many commentators have portrayed Mr. Ashraff as a visionary, political thinker, humanist, poet etc. My attempt here is to go down memory lane and briefly recount a few instances of his innovative approach to politics. [TC]

Some Comments on the Legacy of the Late Senator Murugeysen Tiruchelvam, QC.

by Tissa Jayatilaka

19th November marked the 101st birth anniversary of the late Senator Tiruchelvam who passed away 32 years ago today—22nd of November, 1976. [TC]

Ramifications of 13th Amendment and its potential for change

by Dr. Lakshman Marasinghe

Devolution of power by necessity engages a structural hierarchy of constitutionally determined recipients of the devolved powers. [FI]

"Ethnic Conflict in Sri Lanka : The Dilemma of Building the Unitary State."

Dr. A.R.M. Imtiyaz

Desire to maintain the unitary state structure of the country, while weakening the political solution to the deadly ethnic civil war in Sri Lanka, aggravated the ethnic tensions between the Tamils and the Sinhalese, the dominant majority ethnic group. [FI]

TRO Response to "forfeit" of funds by Sri Lanka Govt. [FI]

In the Tigers' lair [The Economist]

Arts ~ Culture ~ Heritage

M.N. Nambiar: Legendary "Villain" of Tamil Cinema

By D.B.S. Jeyaraj

Manjeri Narayanan Nambiar or M.N.Nambiar (89) as he was generally known passed away after prolonged illness around 1.00 pm , at a private nursing home in Chennai on Wednesday November 19th 2008. The remains were taken to his residence at Gopalapuram for fans and members of the film fraternity to pay their respects to the legendary “villain” of Tamil cinema. [TC]

November 14, 2008

Nov 16-22: "There is nothing wrong with change, if it is in the right direction." - Sir Winston Churchill (1874-1965)

FMM fears for physical safety of journalist Tissainayagam in Magazine prison 

J.S. Tissainayagam, senior journalist who is on trial before the High Court has been moved from the remand prison to the magazine prison in Colombo on November 18. [FI]

Mahinda has increased his salary by 40% charges Mangala

Former Foreign minister Mangala Samaraweera has charged that President Mahinda Rajapakse had increased his salary by 400% within four days of being elected President. [TC]

Video & Pictorial ~ Amnesty International: Sri Lankan government must act now to protect 300,000 displaced

The humanitarian crisis in the Wanni region of northern Sri Lanka is worsening as the government fails to provide shelter and protect over 300,000 displaced civilians. [TC]

An Analysis of Military Situation 

by Col R Hariharan

As expected Task Force-I of the Sri Lanka security forces captured Pooneryn on November 15 freeing A32 highway from the control of the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eeelam (LTTE). [TC]

Why good Sinhalese are silent in the face of fanatic jingoists 

by Dr. A.C. Visvalingam

It would not be far off the truth to state that not only did sixty-two per cent of those who voted in the recent US Presidential Elections believe that the half-black, half-white Barack Hussein Obama would make a better President than the all-white John McCain but even the vast majority of Sri Lankans who followed the recent US Presidential Elections were thrilled that so many white voters joined their multi-coloured counterparts to support Obama. [TC]

Emotional Unity of Tamils On A Global Scale 

by T.Sabaratnam
I wish to record the trends that surfaced last week locally, in Tamil Nadu and globally among the Tamil people to help our readers to keep track of the possible new developments in the ethnic conflict. [TC]

Sinhala Buddhist culture faces greater danger from aberrant behaviour than the “Aba” film [TC]

IT professionals wear T-shirts inscribed with pro-Sri Lankan Tamils slogans [Hindu]

Sri Lankan Tamils in Canada ravaged by war in homeland [AFP]

Head of a Tamil radio station held in Colombo under anti-terror law

Statement by RSF

Reporters Without Borders today urged the Sri Lankan authorities to release the manager of a Tamil radio A. R. V. Loshan, who was arrested at his home in the capital Colombo on 15 November. [FI]

The Tragic killing of a young, committed Doctor 

A statement by the Rt. Rev. Duleep de Chickera, Bishop of Colombo [TC]

The Tamil Nadu Resolution and new possibilities 

By Rajan Philips

On Wednesday, 12 November, the Tamil Nadu State Assembly unanimously adopted a resolution calling on the Indian Government to persuade the Government of Sri Lanka to agree to a ceasefire with the LTTE and to commence negotiations to reach a political settlement. [FI]

Identifying Sri Lankan Tamil cause with LTTE may damage the cause itself 

by Amrith Lal

The war in Sri Lanka always finds an echo in Tamil Nadu. Political parties and civil society groups including members of the film industry have now brought the issue to a boil. [TC]

Sarath Fonseka Statements Reek of Sinhala Triumphalism 

by Izeth Hussain

I cannot join in the storm of criticism because my own responses to the above statements have been complex, ranging from strong and enthusiastic approval to strong disapproval to alarm. My first reaction of strong support - which in truth made me want to shout "Bravo, Sarath, bravo" – was evoked by his claim that this country belongs to the majority Sinhalese, and so on. [TC] 

Sri Lanka's Genocidal War on Eelam Tamils and the Question of Nation's Self-Determination  

by Democratic Students' Union (DSU), Jawaharlal Nehru University

For the last two weeks, the Sri Lankan armed forces have been engaged in an aggressive war with the people of Tamil Eelam, aimed not only at the combatants but the entire civilian population. As a result, Thousands of Tamils have been killed, wounded and have been forcefully displaced.

It is not a war between the Sri Lankan army and the LTTE as the mainstream media tries to portray, but is an attempt by the Sri Lankan state to wipe out the entire Tamil population from the island, in the cover of eliminating the LTTE.[FI]

Sri Lanka's war: The crucible of the sword 

by Dayan Jayatilleka

In regard to the Tamil Nadu assembly’s call for a ceasefire and an end to military operations, President Rajapakse has spoken for the overwhelming bulk of his citizens when he just said no. [TC]

Singaporean activists call for halt to war in Sri Lanka [TOC]

Armed forces likely to capture Elephant Pass Soon 

By D.B.S. Jeyaraj

The on going war between the Sri Lankan armed forces and Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) has been one of fluctuating fortunes with one side or the other gaining  and losing  ground militarily. [DM]

Tamils – Need for an innovative and pragmatic approach 

By Dr. Rajasingham Narendran

Problems are the common burden of the human species irrespective of where we live in this world.  In biblical terms this had become our ‘Curse’ the day Adam and Eve partook of the forbidden apple. [TC]

Thamilian Separatism Raises Its Head Again In Tamil Nadu 

by PC Vinoj Kumar

Tamil separatism is a dead issue. Or is it? The Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (DMK) dropped its demand for a separate Dravida nation almost half a century ago, in 1963.

AI appeals on behalf of Tissainayagam and the Jasikarans 

Statement by Amnesty International USA

Amnesty International considers the detained Sri Lankan journalist J.S. Tissainayagam to be a prisoner of conscience, imprisoned solely for his legitimate work as a journalist. AI calls for his immediate and unconditional release. [FI]

November 08, 2008

Nov 9-15: "Time brings all things to pass." - Aeschylus (525 BC/524 BC - 456 BC/455 BC) Greek Playwright

New Delhi Should Have Anticipated The Growing Disquiet In Tamil Nadu

by G. Parthasarathy

A major lesson that the Manmohan Singh Government has learnt in recent days is that the warm and friendly Delhi-Colombo relationship cannot remain unaffected by the dynamics of Colombo-Chennai equations. [FI] 

The New Moral Majority - Black, it ain't!

by Vasee Nesiah

The World has witnessed a quantum leap in how Americans perceive themselves and Obama has laid bare the presumptions of a White and Black America, a Democratic and Republican America, a Religious and Secular America, etc., etc.  Not just in his campaign rhetoric, but also in his vote tally on Election Day. 

Rajapakse snubs Manmohan Singh by refusing to declare ceasefire and commence negotiations

Sri Lankan President Mahinda Rajapakse delivered a direct snub to Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh by rejecting a proposal to declare an immediate ceasefire and begin efforts towards a negotiated political settlement. [TC]

Nepal Teenager Worshiped As Buddha Re-incarnation

The teenage boy revered as a reincarnation of Buddha sat silently in the jungle as he blessed his devotees on Wednesday with a light tap on the head, which they consider the touch of the divine. [TC]

LTTE Survival is Indian Insurance Policy against Sri Lanka

by T.S. Gopi Rethinaraj

The survival of the Tamil Tigers is India’s insurance policy against Sri Lanka swinging over to interests of powers that might seek to contain India in the Indian Ocean region. [TC]

Barack Obama - Hillary Clinton: Face - Off Between Race and Gender Bias In U.S.Politics

by Jayanthi Natarajan

Barack Obama has won the battle and, as one columnist put it, this is an "emotional, incandescent moment" not just for Mr Obama, but, in a sense, for the entire world. The significance of Mr Obama’s victory for African-Americans, oppressed minorities all over the world, is immeasurable. [FI] 

NGOs and the victim industry

By Bernard Hours

The humanitarian industry’s success made it inevitable its power would be abused. After the 2004 Southeast Asian tsunami, people had begun to question whether non-governmental organisations had the competence to administer the huge amounts of money they received. [TC]

IOC.Article 19 Call For Release of Sri Lankan Tamil Journalist in detention- 250 days [FI]

Sri Lanka: The State Changes Face 

By Jayadeva Uyangoda 

During the course of the 25-yearlong civil war, the Sri Lankan state has changed character, which is now manifest very sharply. Sri Lanka has become a national security state where civil and political rights remain suspended, where the civil-military relationship has changed and the military has been accorded greater say. The ethnic communal and majoritarian nature of the state is also now very apparent. [TC]

The New Broadcasting Station Regulations

A statement by the Rt. Rev. Duleep de Chickera, Bishop of Colombo

The recently gazetted Private Television Broadcasting Station Regulations and the intended Sri Lanka Broadcasting Corporation Act are very worrying and must awaken all democratic minded Sri Lankans. [FI]

Operational Developments in the Eelam War

by Col R Hariharan

The security forces put two weeks of sunny weather to good use, advancing their offensive further both along the Mannar coast and the axis Akkarayankulam-Kilinochchi, southwest of the administrative capital of the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE). [TC]

Obama, The New America and Sri Lanka Tomorrow

By Dayan Jayatilleka

Watching the live coverage of the US elections on as many channels as possible—but mainly on Al Jazeera International—I discovered I had mixed emotions, corresponding perhaps to the various aspects of my identity. I was delighted as an individual, a political analyst and academic, a friend of the United States (though a critic of its foreign policy) and a citizen of the world. [TC] 

American People Make History, Can We Sri Lankans Ever?

By Muttukrishna Sarvananthan

In April 2008 I met an American national in Colombo who works for the World Bank in Washington, DC. At that time both Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama were contesting for the Democratic Party Presidential nomination and John McCain was already the sole contender for the Republican Party Presidential nomination. [TC]

Ominous Danger Posed By Aerial Dimension In Sri Lankan Conflict

Dr.Ruwantissa Abeyratne

The recent attacks on the Kelanitissa Power Station once again brings to bear the ominous danger posed by the aeronautical dimension in the conflict in Sri Lanka. [TC]

Prospects for a Sri Lankan version of Barack Obama

By D.B.S. Jeyaraj

Sri Lanka too has not been immune from “Obama mania.” US envoy Robert Blake organized an event at the Hilton where invitees could view US election results on CNN. [Daily Mirror]

The promised political solution

By Dr. S. Narapalasingam

Following the successful (October 25-26) visit to New Delhi of his special envoy Basil Rajapaksa MP and Secretary Lalith Weeratunga, President Mahinda Rajapaksa in an extensive interview with Narasimhan Ram, the Editor-in-Chief of ‘The Hindu’ on  27th October at ‘Temple Trees’ Colombo reiterated that his “government is firmly committed to a negotiated political solution based on devolution of power and ensuring the democratic, political, including linguistic, rights of all our Tamil brethren within an undivided Sri Lanka.” [FI]

Aspects of barriers on Federalism in Sri Lanka

By A. Rajasingam

It is a tragedy to observe that the Sinhala Only Act accounted as a marked departure towards the march of communal cry, a problem that was created unnecessarily. The Tamils would have studied the Sinhala language even if the Sinhala Only Act was not passed, had Sinhala and Tamil been enshrined as official languages in the constitution. [FI]

The Video/DVD/VCD Rousing Emotions in Tamil Nadu [TC]

All Lands Home

The sweet ironies of Obamania

by Rajan Philips

Barack Obama’s election as America’s first African American President is a historic answer to what really did not even begin as a question in the 2008 Presidential election. Obama did not question if America was ready for a Black President. He ran on the assumption it was.

November 01, 2008

Nov 2 - 8: "We are not enemies, but friends, though passion may have strained it must not break our bonds of affection." - America's 44th President Elect Barack Obama, quoting President Abraham Lincoln's words

IFJ and IPI Call For International Attention on Landmark Journalists' Rights Case in Sri Lanka [FI]

Journalist Tissainayagam testifies about police pressure on him

By T. Farook Thajudeen

Senior Journalist Jeyaprakash Sittampalam Tissainayagam testified before  Colombo High Court Judge Ms. Deepali Wijesundera in the inquiry to ascertain whether the confession made by him to the  Terrorist Investigation Division (TID) was a voluntarily one or made under pressure and threat. [TC]

Obama’s triumph, heavy setback for majoritarianism and racial bigotry

By Lynn Ockersz

Quite understandably, a celebratory, festive atmosphere prevailed at a banquet hall at the Colombo Hilton, on the morning of November 5, where the US embassy in Colombo conducted an exhilarating event to telecast, via CNN, the results of the recently concluded US presidential election which has quite rightly been described as ‘historic’. [FI]

Why Sri Lanka has failed to produce a Barack Obama

By Sanjana Hattotuwa

The discovery that I am interested in peace building by an emigration or immigration officer at Katunayake is always an invitation for the brief discussion of Sri Lanka’s ethnic conflict, the articulation of their unswerving (and I believe genuine) confidence in the incumbent regime to bring peace and my own parting appeal for them to look beyond military victories to the need for a political solution. [FI]

For eyes of President elect Obama only

By B. Raman

There is amazement - and confusion - in India over reports that one of the first acts of the President will be to appoint Bill Clinton as hisSpecial Envoy on the Kashmir issue to facilitate a settlement between India and Pakistan. [TC]

Barack Obama: History's High Note

By Dayan Jayatilleka

History sometimes hits a high note, sweet and soaring, clean and clear, as if from Satchmo’s horn. The most intelligent, interesting and inspirational of contemporary political personalities is about to be the President of the most powerful nation on the planet. [TC]

CPA challenges validity of recent regulations concerning TV broadcasting in Sri Lanka [FI]

Obama: Dangers of Indo-Pak Re-Hyphenation

By B. Raman

The Presidential campaign is over. The transition drill has begun. Senator Barrack Obama will take over as the President only on January 20 next, but his immense work as the President-elect would have already begun from the moment he left the dais after making the victory speech to his followers and supporters. [TC]

Over centralization of Power is prime cause for war

We the delegates assembled at Sri Lanka Foundation Institute (SLFI) on 1st November 2008 at National Delegates Conference of “Peoples Movement for Power Sharing” representing the Provinces of Uva, Central, North West, Sabaragamuwa, Vayamba, South Western and East affirm the following Declaration as partners of the “Peoples Movement for Power Sharing “. [FI] 

VOA Editorial: U.S. Perspectives On Sri Lanka

U.S. Ambassador to Sri Lanka Robert Blake said, "America's experience in Iraq, Afghanistan and elsewhere has taught us that terrorism cannot be defeated by law enforcement and military measures alone." [TC] 

Need of the hour is political solution

Statement by Mano Ganesan MP

Tamils of this country thank Indian central and Tamilnadu state governments for the forthcoming generous 800T humanitarian aid in ten days from today to the needy in the Vanni region. But the food and medicine cannot substitute the all important power devolved political solution to the national question of Sri Lanka. [FI]

“Superstar” Rajinikanth wants equal rights for Sri Lankan Tamils

Rajinikanth, a “Superstar” with mass popularity around the world, delivered his remarks in his distinguished stylized delivery of dialogue, on Saturday Nov 1st in Chennai at the Tamil film fraternity fast showing solidarity with Tamils in Sri Lanka. Apart from film career, Rajinikanth is well known for philanthropy and also has a notable political influence. His latest movie ‘Sivaji’ was mega hit around the globe. [TC] 

World Bank places Sri Lanka among the “highly vulnerable” countries

By Saman Gunadasa

World Bank report published just prior to a joint International Monetary Fund-World Bank meeting on October 10 included Sri Lanka among 28 countries that are judged to be “highly vulnerable” to the ongoing global financial crisis and credit crunch. [TC]

The New "Ram Sethu

By Rajan Philips

N. Ram, Editor-in-chief of The Hindu, Chennai’s inimitable English daily, has emerged as the most influential eminent person on either side of the Palk Straits. Earlier in October, his paper condemned the chauvinistic eruptions in Tamil Nadu in support of the LTTE. [TC]

Empowering Tamil Nadu within empowered India: A constructive way forward, to the Sri Lankan ethnic crisis

By Ravi Sundaralingam [FI]

The Tamil question in Sri Lanka

By Chris Slee [TC]

All Lands Home 

Tibet: 'Status qup plus' As an option?

By B. Raman

There is a note of increasing dejection in the post-Olympics statements and comments of His Holiness the Dalai Lama and his spokesmen regarding the future of Tibet. His hopes that in the wake of the protest demonstrations in Tibet in March,2008, the international community will step up pressure on Beijing to reach an accommodation with him have been belied. [FI]