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War and Human Rights

- If anybody including Prof. Tissa Vitharana is for negotiations with the LTTE based on some preconceived proposal then that position has to be defended politically without resorting to statements such as war is horrible. It is true that "war" is horrible but it has been forced upon us by Prabhakaran and his uncles such as SJV Chelvanayakam and GG Ponnambalam, and grand uncles such as Ramanathan and Arunachalam.
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by Nalin de Silva


(June 04, Colombo, Sri Lanka Guardian) There is no war in Sri Lanka. And there are no human rights in the world. In Sri Lanka a terrorist group that has the blessings of the western countries that pay lip service to eradication of terrorism against other cultures has taken up arms against the Sri Lankan state and wants to establish a separate state that was the wish of SJV Chelvanayakam and the Ilankai Thamil Arasu Kadchi (ITAK) and later of the TULF. We are not sure whether the TULF is still upholding the Vadukkodai resolution of 1976 and another statement on this issue from Mr. Ananda Sangaree who releases press statement after statement would be most welcome. Neither the Sri Lankan government nor the state is at war with the LTTE. The government, the ministry of defence and the armed forces are engaged in humanitarian operations against the terrorists to liberate the masses from the LTTE.

We have said on many occasions that there are no human rights as such in the abstract and these refer to rights of individuals vis-à-vis the society and the state. The individual rights are relative and in Britain a Brazilian was shot dead simply because he looked like a Muslim. I do not think that he had any individual rights in Britain and the relatives of the poor man had to be satisfied with a meaningless "sorry" from the police. The British government acted as if nothing had happened. The record of USA on so called human rights is well known and needs no elaboration.

It is without question that the Sri Lankan government and the armed forces have to make sure that innocent individuals are affected minimally by the operations carried out against the LTTE. The terrorists on the other hand according to "human rights" organisations have the luxury of killing innocent people in busses, in trains or on roads while walking, as they are not responsible to anybody, not even to the human rights watchers. These watchers who are paid by the west for watching and witching are of the opinion that the Sri Lankan government has no respect for "human rights".

The failure of Sri Lanka to get elected to the human rights commission at UN has been given much publicity by certain sections of the press. At the same time some others have given publicity to the election of Mr. Nimal Siripala de Silva as the President of a health organisation of UN. Why worry on any one of these elections knowing very well that these elections are politically motivated and that the westerners have peculiar ways of bribing not only the politicians but also the "intellectuals", film directors, novelists and others from the so called third world, and also "punishing" countries that are not in their good books. I have gratitude towards Pakistan that was elected to one of the Asian seats, for all that the country has done for Sri Lanka but I cannot say that when it comes to "human rights" and democracy it has a better record than Sri Lanka, even without a "war" against one of the most ruthless if not the most terrorist organisation in the world. The Sri Lankans are obsessed with "recognition" by the west and it is said that during the direct colonial days when our schools prepared students for the Cambridge examinations, outside Britain most number of students sat the examinations from Sri Lanka. When we were school children we were brought up also on the heroic deeds of those who had come first in the empire or east of Suez and this tradition continues even today with local examinations as well as "international" examinations. Unfortunately they are very often no better than "news first" and these firsts have failed to come up with any new concepts or theories even in western knowledge system.

The image of Sri Lanka is formed by the western media and when we are saddled with a problem created by the Dutch and the British we should not expect any recognition from the west for going against their wish. The west wants the government of Sri Lanka to negotiate with the LTTE though the latter is not prepared to move an inch from their position as revealed in The Island of 2nd June 2008. The west and some of the Tamil Parties and the Marxist Parties in Sri Lanka want the government of Sri Lanka to come out with some proposals for the LTTE to come to the negotiating table. Though according to Mahinda Chinthana the President is prepared to negotiate with the LTTE it is not mentioned therein that the President would come out with a proposal to the satisfaction of the LTTE to commence negotiations. If the LTTE wants negotiations let them come without any conditions and with no preconceived "solutions." Any proposed solution would be used by the LTTE to bargain for more ending up with a separate solution. In this regard the statement by Prof. Tissa Vitharana to the effect that the APRC should come out with a solution to bring the LTTE to the negotiating table is against Mahinda Chinthana and is not acceptable. The APRC has no mandate for such solution and as long as Prof. Tissa Vitharana tries to use the APRC to achieve his "political solutions" the participation at the APRC becomes problematic.

Thus, as it is, as far as the LTTE is concerned there is no alternative other than continuing with the humanitarian operations. This brings us to the attitude of the journalists towards "war". LTTE is not engaged in a liberation war and their terrorism cannot be compared with the Algerian war. Just because some French intellectuals and journalists were against the way France conducted the Algerian war in Sri Lanka it cannot be said that that the operations against the LTTE should be stopped and negotiations should be commenced at once probably with some proposal from the APRC. If anybody including Prof. Tissa Vitharana is for negotiations with the LTTE based on some preconceived proposal then that position has to be defended politically without resorting to statements such as war is horrible. It is true that "war" is horrible but it has been forced upon us by Prabhakaran and his uncles such as SJV Chelvanayakam and GG Ponnambalam, and grand uncles such as Ramanathan and Arunachalam.

The journalists who report on "war" have a duty to support the government to defeat the LTTE without being a cat’s paw of the west and their agents in Sri Lanka. There are weaknesses of the government, but they have to be reported in good spirit so as not to demoralise the army. If the army is demoralised it will be to the advantage of the LTTE which is a fascist ruthless terrorist organisation though supported by the west. If some journalists and newspaper companies are against the "war" politically then they should say so publicly for the masses to identify their position and not be misled by their "reporting". Contrary to what the west teaches us there is no reporting without interpretation and it is always better to state one’s position without trying to pretend that one is only reporting, and thus being hypocritical. For the first time in Sri Lanka the LTTE, which had been called invincible and glorified as a so called liberating "army" by people with vested interests, has been made to run for life, and those people are trying to pull all the strings at their disposal at this last moment.

However this does not imply that the journalists could be threatened for what they have written and the government should not go after them. Let the journalists and their bosses be frank and say that they do not want the LTTE to be defeated rather than be hypocritical and hide behind so called freedom of expression. In France they had intellectuals of the calibre of Sartre who had independent original views and who could be respected though one may not agree with his existentialism, which was a philosophy of western Christian modernity wrongly identified with some aspects Buddhism by some "scholars" in Sri Lanka. However in Sri Lanka most of those "intellectuals" who oppose the "war" are on the pay role of the NGOs and INGOs financed by the west.

(Professor Nalin de Silva is a Sri Lankan theoretical physicist, philosopher and a political analyst. He is a Professor in the Department of Mathematics at the University of Kelaniya, Sri Lanka.)
- Sri Lanka Guardian

5 comments

Harsha said...

Its a pity that people like Prof. Nalin still utter your nonsense. If not for racist pandits like him we would had peace in the country because the so-called "uneducated people in Sri Lanka never supported ethnic divide.

Duminda said...

The reality behind the curtain.

We done Prof nalin de silva..

Ben said...

You are the only non dollar Vaulture in Sri Lanka

Banda-Australia

Norah L. said...

Poor Professor. I suggest you stick to the physics part hereafter, and leave the fields of philosophy and politics which you are, according to the byline, also supposed to be an expert in. Your writing proves this extra qualifications of yours to be a fake. Why is it that so many Sinhala "intellectuals" bluntly accept the Rajapakse dynasty's war propaganda without a single critical reflection? Why is it, Professor Nalin de Silva, that you prove yourself utterly incapable of taking in what war is? If you were not aware of it: your article states that war is horror but OK ("because it was forced upon us". No, it wasn't - only animals or robots would think that the only possible reaction to violence is more violence, with more and heavier munitions). I take it that human lives do not really mean much to you? Do you know for a second what is happening in the north? Have you ever visited the northern mainland? Do you know that people (yes, humans) live there? This is the area which the Government so desparately wants to "occupy" (the correct term for it, according to those who happen to live there, and who else have the right to define it?) that it has to use inaccurate supersonic bombers, KNOWINGLY (i.e. deliberately) killing civilians.
No, please stay in the lab and lock the door to it; then you shouldn't be able to pollute young Sinhalese brains with the actual cause behind the whole debacle: a distorted and quite nasty form of Buddhist chauvinism. In the meantime: Good luck while waiting for Fonseka's promised victory. Is is when his troops reach Mankulam? Or Kilinochchi? Or Elephant Pass? And that is going to put an end to the nationalist struggle of the Tamils in the country? To LTTE terrorism? How little you have understood. Hauwkish war-mongering and naivete in a dangerously blind mix. An adult describing the war as a "humanitarian" mission. And, typically, blaiming "the West" for everything. In order words: sinking down to Weerawansa's level. From a professor. Poor man. Poor country.

Namal said...

Brain washed idiots, look at the East now, look at Pilleyan! For better or worst people in east now at least think about a better future. That is what people like Dr. Nalin call result of humanitarian war. It is the only pragmatic way to look at the situation in SL today. There is always wars whether you like it or not.

But many people really make their living using war, try to portray Prabakaran as a humanitarian. Irony is that all of them one way or the other are funded/supported or praised by west. Only Dr. Nalin was able to theoretically/philosophically/historically without any inconsistency able to explain this phenomenon.

It is not only just the quick dollars doing this, there are so many factors. People need to read little more on Dr. Nalins work to understand reality behind this (if there is such thing). Yes when troops reach Kill in nochchi big part of the problem will be solved. But there are more work to be done after that.

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