| by Gajalakshmi Paramasivam
( March 28, 2014, Melbourne, Sri Lanka Guardian) The wording of the UNHRC against Sri Lanka states ‘Promoting Reconciliation, Accountability and Human Rights in Sri Lanka’. As a Sri Lankan I feel sad – for it feels as if Americans are ‘telling’ Sri Lankans even though no American came to my aid when I was sent to prison for fighting those very rights here in Australia. In fact I was sent to prison by an American holding the position of Vice Chancellor of the University of New South Wales. Nor did the UN write on my behalf to the Australian Human Rights Commission, leave alone the Australian Government. Hence, to my mind, however high my standard of practice of the values that UN claims to stand for, may be - I am just a nobody in the eyes of those who carry the UN status. Following is a confirmation of this:
On 25 March 2014, a UN Independent Expert wrote to me:
[I have repeatedly asked you to remove me from your mailing list. I have no interest in your mailings nor have I asked to receive them!
Sent via my BlackBerry from Vodacom - let your email find you!]
To me, the above resolution by the UN is the parallel of this UN Expert’s ordering. The fact that the above was in response to my Sri Lanka Guardian article ‘Too Many Cooks Spoiling The Jaffna Koohl(Soup)?’ in which I discuss the proposed UNHRC resolution, said it all – that Sri Lanka to the UN was as insignificant as I was to this UN Expert. Those who are focused would make the connection through what happens at that time in their parallel of the issue. Dr. Dayan Jayatilleke on the other hand did respond with a simple ‘thank you’. The commonness is the Sri Lankan in us. The parallel of that between the UN Expert and I should have been the global values that the UN claims it stands for. I doubt that the UN would hold this UN Expert accountable!
Knowing that the UN Administration would not - I concluded my response to the UN Expert as follows:
[…… if you still consider me to be a nuisance – it is your duty as a lawyer with international status to either take action against me and if there is no such law – make recommendations to the appropriate authorities towards introducing such laws at global level. Until then – the path of Truth is our Common Law.
As per that Common Law – you say ‘let your email find you!’ . It did and was happily received by this Global citizen to return your karma!.]
The UN’s status is being used by the rich countries to play football with Sri Lanka. Let’s not lose sight of the ruling that the mandate is there for the atrocities on both sides to be scrutinized in this process and that all those who used the LTTE work and sacrifice would naturally need to demote themselves at the global level. These are the consequences that some may not ‘see’ due to lack of depth of investment in the issue. These players may end up cutting off their nose to spite their face.
Ultimately, for us the common citizens, the message is to stop following leaders who are lacking in substance, often due to failure of Guides above themselves – beyond their generation. It is very difficult for us to achieve global standards in one generation. Those who have invested locally in more than one generation would comfortably convert the investment in vertical hierarchical system to lateral system of democracy of global standards. This is the strongest challenge that a displaced migrant faces.
Failure to achieve this, often results in the migrant votes being hijacked by those with high status, seeking quick victories. The real experience does not come home with us. If it did – not one Sri Lankan on either side of the ethnic divide would celebrate this passage of the UNHRC resolution. One who feels it’s a win has paid as cost her/his Sovereignty.
Both sides to this war – claimed Sovereignty. One who is truly sovereign would learn to live with the resources earned and available. As they say in Tamil – the Tiger would not eat grass even when hungry. That is the first test of sovereignty. Neither side leadership passes this test. That indeed is a downfall for all those who subjectively follow these leaders. It is sad for all of us who include these followers as part of our world.