Thursday, November 8, 2012

International Community Duped by Tiger Propaganda! Lies, lies and more lies!

Wed, 2012-11-07 03:28 — editor
By A Correspondent
The new face of the Tamil Tigers appear as human rights activists. Having committed the worst atrocities for three decades, they are now marching in the corridors of power in Geneva. The Tigers and their cubs are harnessing the vast network in the West and in Tamil Nadu to regroup and human rights lobby has fallen prey to them.
The Tamil tigers offered votes to Western politicians dependent on minority votes and money to corrupt Tamil Nadu politicians. Both M. Karunanidhi and MGR Ramachandran supported the LTTE and it was no suprise that M.K. Stalin was received by the controversial Navanethem "Navi" Pillai, the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights in Geneva.
The Tamil tigers demonize anything and everything in Sri Lanka, enlist the support of vociferous groups to campaign on their behalf on rights and for funds; resort to emotive techniques to sustain the diaspora sympathy but struggle to engage the community in Sri Lanka that has seen through their deception. The Tamil tigers continue to manipulate politicians, in their host country constituencies, who are keen to promote topical burning issues; they manipulate rights groups, aid agencies and feed the hungry press. No story is worth telling unless you can make it emotive. It is only a few courageous western journalists and writers concerned about global security go the extra mile to scratch beneath the surface of the propaganda to expose terrorist front cover and sympathetic agencies and their tactics.
The masses respond to stories of death, destruction, abuse, torture, corruption, women, children and tears. The Tamil tiger terrorists gripped their own community for 30 years in a blanket of deprivation and horror by cutting out media and contact with other communities, they gripped the Tamil diaspora through their agents that feed the diaspora with stories, video clips, drama, film, songs of fear and horror and in turn got their communities to campaign in the host countries. The Tamil tigers are notorious for showing images of the Hindu festival where men hang on hooks and go in procession – shown as torture, men rolling on the soil around the Hindu temple in prayer as being tortured, and images of terror gripped under developed areas as not being developed due to discrimination.
The height of deception comes when the Tamil tiger atrocities of massacres and impact of suicide bombings and assassinations conducted for 30 years targeting Buddhists, Muslims and Christians in cities and border villages - -- projected as Tamils being victimized. Members of the Tamil community often say “we have lost so much credibility with lies, lies and so much lies, that we feel ashamed to say we are Tamil”.
A community put to shame by the violence justifying Tamil tiger supporters overseas. The credit-card fraud, insurance-fraud, human smuggling, drug trafficking ---, the legacy of the infamous Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE).
Members of the Tamil community often say in hushed tones that the LTTE destroyed their credibility and dignity as a community that lived and worked honestly. Why the hushed tones?
Due to the lingering fear that they will be contacted, a Tamil tigers overseas will get to know, though those receiving money from Canada, Germany or France and their support enlisted. While those who receive the calls and receive the money say that they wont be fooled anymore. But we need the money. We take the calls. We agree with them. But we know that they fund violence and we are their servants! They think we will continue to be their servants in violence. No more. We will not be duped. The diaspora and international community might be – but not us.
Some say that because they send the money people don’t want to work “what is the point in working everyday when we can get lumpsums from abroad?” – thereby preventing the ordinary man from returning to what was once known as a “honest day’s work” where one would work earn and spend one’s earnings to uplift one’s family. The Tamil tigers and the culture they spread was based on handouts from the Western diaspora and donor organizations.
It came in millions and billions of dollars as revealed in the investigation into the Tiger front Tamil Rehabilitation Organization and its supporter Raj Rajaratnam in the United States of America. The money flowed with every attack, with every assassination, the bounty! The diaspora Tamil tigers paid dollars for the blood spill. The price was greater the bigger the target. They sent pennies and the cents collected on the streets as well as the thousands from the wealthy to sponsor murder in another country.
The Tamil tiger agenda is exercised through NGOs and INGOs, Human rights groups, Peace groups and movements. Everyone wants to be somebody – therefore we will always find the odd Sinhalese that wants to be famous campaigning on behalf of the Tamil tigers, feeling good about themselves, helping to ease the guilt or justify an inadequacy.
Looking at images of those that died when held hostage by the Tamil tigers and attempting to interpret that the body count was a result of the government troops. Did anyone do a body count of those the Tigers assassinated for trying to escape? Those that died when the Tamil tiger artillery was aimed parallel to the ground to attack Sri Lankan troops? Or when Tamil tiger artillery coordinates were specifically given to hit their civilian hostages in an attempt to “sacrifice them” for the media. When these bodies were collected and laid out or discovered in piles by the Sri Lankan Forces the easy interpretation was – they are standing there – they must have done it. The question is would the troops have risked their lives to rescue the civilians amisdst Tamil tiger artillery and weapons fire? Does anyone question as to why there is “no war” from the day the terrorist leader was pronounced dead? Then one would conclude that no terrorism=no war.
Agencies and individuals breathing life into the world’s most ruthless terrorist organisation should be held accountable. Not a single apology to any of the massacred villagers, destroyed religious sites, bombings of civilians, maiming and disabling of civilians, from the terrorist support groups, funders, and rights groups that breathed life into terrorist group.
The Tamil tigers, chameleon like adjust quickly to new and different ways of achieving their agenda. The Tamil tigers to keep their funds coming in, must enlist Western support to campaign on their behalf, must keep the diaspora engaged for funds, must try to keep the local community on side to ensure their side jobs and that little extra income. How do they do this?
They market images of wailing women, crying children, terrorist held territory images, to project an image of injustice. Little does the unsuspecting viewer know that they were created by the terrorists. An attempt made to dupe an Australian magistrate into thinking a Tamil asylum seeker was tortured when he displayed images of a Hindu festival of himself hanging on hooks, and another man rolling in the sand. British Immigration officers duped into believing the cigarette burns are torture marks. These are well established preplanned methods that can be selected from a “menu” for those that wish to seek asylum. When a Tamil tiger supporter that facilitated human trafficking was asked why so many try to leave? Do they not like living here that much? He looked baffled and responded “Oh no, it is because those countries take them, so they go there. If they take them, then why not go?”
Deception was their forte and still is. Those that were entrapped into supporting terrorists, respond differently. Some speak out while others simply move away from providing the support. Still others continue to support as they just cannot bear to think they were sucked in, were naïve, got caught, cant bear to feel hood winked or got cheated and wants to justify and rationalize their stand trying not to see the horrors of terrorism.
Well why do the media overseas say that women are abused and harassed?
A senior member of the Tamil community says “the drama continues for a few rupees or promise of a boat ride to a western country with free accommodation, meals and allowance”. The Tamil tigers who were not rehabilitated and hid among the civilians or those that did not disclose their true identity and blended with the community are keen to work for Tamil tiger diaspora money. “They will talk the talk and walk the walk”.
The Tamil tigers used street theater and drama to recruit the young to their cadre. The Tamil tigers continue to use drama and theatre for their work even to date, says Jesudasan. They pay the families and money produces the actors and actresses. You can earn much from giving a clip or an interview. Besides they say it is what we must do to help our people. The Tamil tigers will use and abuse the system, the living and the dead to achieve their aims.
Sivaseelan is annoyed when he says “What you people don’t understand is every time there is some talks in Geneva the tigers people will get ready. They are milking the West well and all those reporters hungry for stories. They are not fools they make it like it is very secretive, very dangerous, and very secretive and exciting and give the story or interview. Lot of money in it.They thank the new tigers that they can still make money like this.
When I see what they say on these interviews, I think they are still making a bad name for us (Tamils). Also not their fault no? When there are so many in the West that like stories like these and they become famous when they put the story. So they think why not use them. They look-after with gifts those that put the stories also. Tigers people will always use other people’s foolishness. Everyone is happy the acting family is paid, the tigers people are happy, the person listening to the story is happy for a good story. So it is a business also.
Amudha who lived for one year in a rehabilitation center and subsequently in the community amongst civilians and other reintegrated former Tamil tiger families had this to say: last time also when there was something in Geneva they told stories about rapes and abuse on those in custody. I have lived in rehabilitation and I used to look after women in the female regiment. No one has been raped or I will hear of it. I keep in touch with these women who have been in centers and now in the community. If there was we will say.
But when they treated us with respect then we must not lie. Where I live now is outside the village on the edge of the forest area. I live with 6 families that were with the Tamil tigers. All the women live on their own with the children while the men go to work in other areas or some have died during terrorism. We are living safely and without problems. If there was so much problems how come we do not experience. Even if we don’t experience we hear from all areas everything that happens and no one has said about abuse or rape. We are not afraid to speak out. These stories are nice stories for the newspapers and overseas I think that is what they like to hear is happening. It is the police that come to make sure that we don’t have any problems and we are happy for that. We have had to ask for our police post not to be removed from our area. So if abroad there are stories that the police and army are doing abuses I think they make money from the stories.
Vijidaran said if there are so many abuses why are so many rehabilitees joining the Civil defense force? I see more women joining. If they were badly treated they won’t joint and be trained by the Sri Lanka Army? If someone says there were rapes how is it that most joining to the CDF is women? I think there is no anger or bitterness either because if that is the case they will not want to be trained by the Sri Lanka Army.
Jeyani smiles when she says if we were abused in rehabilitation we will be angry. If we heard others were abused we will be even more angry. You must ask people who speak of abuse whether they know that 30 of my friends went back to live inside the rehabilitation center after they were reintegrated into the community. Would they go back to follow the pre-school training course? Some of the rehabilitees were sent home before they finished rehabilitation period to see what life is like after we are reintegrated. Everyone came back.
All the men and the women. I think they should not try to tell more lies now - but be truthful.
They can never say lies about a program that we were all part of and we progressed through the rehabilitation. I was able to get a job after my rehabilitation period in a good company. I learnt all the skills when in the center – I learnt the value of being a woman, not have to be like a man to be respected in the LTTE. I learnt how to present myself as I want to be, to dress and even to smile. Those who know will know. Those who don’t want to know will try to destroy an experience we thought helped us to come back to society. We suffer the consequences of bad things we do and the lies we tell.
Bad things can’t continue forever, the Gods won’t allow it. See what happened? If the government did not stop this we will still be in the jungle hating people that we never knew.
Thinking that what we do is right. We have now moved on and left the bad past. We have moved into light. We have another chance in life to correct anything wrong we have done. We can all decide when we will make a change for good. Anyone can start today if they want.
The responsibility for promoting and facilitating terrorism lies with you. The responsibility extends to the families and loved ones who have suffered for 30 years as a result of Tamil tiger terrorism. If you have supported them in any way. You are responsible for the massacres, assassinations, deprivation of development and education gripped by terrorism. Think about your social responsibility. Think whether you have blood on your hands by speaking on behalf of terrorism or by putting a coin into the bucket carried by a Tamil tiger terrorist in the guise of a humanitarian aide worker.
Maybe the words of a 16 year old rehabilitated child soldier of the Tamil tigers may help people see through the deception of the Tamil tigers: “like vultures that feed on dead bodies…. terrorism destroys communities and destroyed our wellbeing…. They trapped us by giving false hopes, saying even death can become life, the tombstone an epic” referring to the Tamil tiger darlings - the suicide bombers.
- Asian Tribune -

UN helps resolve land issues in Sri Lanka's north   2012-11-07 14:27:24

COLOMBO, Nov. 7 (Xinhua) -- The United Nations (UN) has come forward to address land issues faced by Sri Lanka's war displaced people who have been resettled, a UN agency in Colombo said on Wednesday.
The UN refugee agency, UNHCR, said fresh challenges have emerged as people continue to return home and it is working with local authorities and partners to support sustainable returns by addressing some of the problems, including housing, land and property.
Following the end of a 30 year war between the military and the Tamil Tiger rebels, thousands of displaced people were resettled and the final batch was moved out of a war displacement camp in the north last month.
However UNHCR said with local government services virtually non- existent at the time of return, the returnees were unable to obtain copies of documents or could not afford to do so. That meant many people could not prove that they owned their land.
"Land documentation is critical for these families to restart their lives and reintegrate in their villages," said Michael Zwack, UNHCR's representative in Sri Lanka.
"Without land deeds, returnee families cannot obtain the clearance to rebuild their homes or prove ownership in order to access housing assistance. Documents are also essential for families to claim compensation for private land that has been used for state purposes."
To help tackle this thorny problem, the UN refugee agency has provided computers, photocopiers, scanners and fax machines to 45 local government offices dealing with land documentation and records in the Mannar, Jaffna, Vavuniya, Mullaitivu and Kilinochchi districts. These will allow officials to process land claims and issue fresh documentation.
"The responsibility of meeting land and civil documentation needs generally lies with the Registrar General's Department. These functions are decentralized to the local government offices and the land registries in the districts," explained Zwack. "So while this equipment is provided primarily to help streamline the application process for land documentation, it also helps streamline the general functions and increase the efficiency of the local government offices."
UNHCR, through local partner organizations, is also helping in the demarcation process, so that returnees can cordon off their area and build protective fences.
Editor: Chen Zhi

PREVIEW-Sri Lanka 2013 budget eyes growth,tariffs to protect industry

Wednesday, 7 Nov 2012 | 7:22 AM ET
* Government to protect local industries
* Deficit, tax revenue, slowing exports are concerns
* Aims for plus 7 pct growth, mid single digit inflation
* Govt to negotiate new IMF programme in January

COLOMBO, Nov 7 (Reuters) - Sri Lanka is aiming to accelerate the pace of economic expansion to 7 percent with its 2013 budget, government officials said, by pumping in money for post-war infrastructure projects while raising import tariffs to protect local industries.
President Mahinda Rajapaksa will present the 2013 budget on Thursday, the fourth since the end of a 25-year war that had hindered the Indian Ocean island nation's economy.
Sri Lanka is expected to spend over $21 billion on the construction and rebuilding of ports, roads, railways and other infrastructure through 2015.
"It will be a growth and development oriented budget," a finance ministry source said on condition of anonymity.
Both the central bank and finance ministry have previously said the budget proposals will support an economic growth target of more than 7 percent and single digit inflation. Growth in 2012 is expected to be 6.8 percent.
The new budget also aims to curb the fiscal deficit and protect local industries such as diary and leather in a bid to replace imports, four government officials told Reuters on condition of anonymity.
Two government sources involved in budget preparations said achieving this year's budget deficit target of 6.2 percent of the gross domestic product was challenging as revenue has not been up to the target. However, they said, the government may aim to reduce the deficit to 6.1 percent in 2013.
The country cut the deficit to 6.9 percent last year from 8.0 percent in 2010 under the terms of a $2.6 billion International Monetary Fund loan.
The IMF fully disbursed the loan in July. The central bank said the country will negotiate a fresh loan in January to fund development activities.
Businesses have called on the government to cut corporate taxes further. But analysts said the government has little flexibility given the low tax collections this year and may actually be looking to raise new taxes.
"The government may raise some import tariffs to protect some local industries like diary and leather. Such a measure will encourage local industries and reduce import cost. The government may also raise some indirect taxes to increase its revenue," Colombo-based TKS Securities' research head Danushka Samarasinghe told Reuters.
Three analysts said they also expect some tax relief to export-oriented businesses amid slowing shipments to Europe, the country's main export destination.
(Reporting by Shihar Aneez; Editing by Sanjeev Miglani)

(( Messaging:

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Challenging the Brahministic male chauvinism

Now in her 80s and spending her life at the Ayya Khema Meditation Centre she built, Ven. Bhikkhuni Dr. Kolonnawe Kusuma who became one of the first Sri Lankan women to be ordained as a bhikkhuni in several centuries, discusses her recently released autobiography, ‘Braving the Unknown Summit’
with Charundi Panagoda

The Bhikkhuni at her daughter’s residence in Wellawatte. Pic by Susantha Liyanawatte
Saranath, India, 1996. Hundreds of devotees, monks, nuns and photographers follow a grand procession of dancers, drummers, horses and caparisoned elephants towards the ordination platform. Kusuma Devendra (nee Gunawardene), about to undergo higher ordination, thinks back to the days of the Buddha, when Ven. Maha Prajapathi Gothami Devi and other women had only their determination to end their Samsaric journeys by entering the Buddha Sasana.
The ceremony started at 6 a.m. and went on until 6 p.m. Her family was there and some of her expatriate classmates had even flown in from London to witness this historic moment. All the nuns (ten including her) had to worship the Buddha prostrating themselves with their foreheads touching the ground. This procedure was repeated more than a hundred times until their knees bled.
Once the long ordination ceremony was done, she became one of the first Sri Lankan women to have been ordained as a bhikkhuni in several centuries.
“Tears came to my eyes when I realised that I had achieved something I must have aspired for, for eons in Samsara. To receive ordination as the first Bhikkhuni after nearly thousand years since the disappearance of Sri Lankan Bhikkhunis! It was unbelievable! Amazing! Even today after 17 years it remains a beautiful dream come true!” Bhikkhuni Kusuma writes in her recently released autobiography ‘Braving the Unknown Summit’. The book, she says, was not intended to be a work of scholarship but a simple narrative to provide, if at all, some guidance and inspiration to women who seek an alternative lifestyle away from hearth and home.
Now spending her golden years as an 83-year-old, at the Ayya Khema Meditation Centre she built, she reflects on her life and her decision to write the book, urged by her chief disciple Ven. Medhavini and daughter Peshala. “So here I am, seated in the open verandah surrounded by Banyan, Bo, Na and Sal trees as well as many trees such as Jak, Coconut, Avocado and Arecanut at my ashram in Olaboduwa, recalling my past. Somewhat to my surprise, I find that the incidents in the past which at that time may have been so difficult and sad to deal with now do not arouse any strong emotional response in my mind. The events that had made deep impressions on me seem to be long dead and gone, and I do not feel any strong likes or dislikes, or anger or sadness. Everything is buried in the sands of time, and I know that all of it will fade away with my death and dissolution. This also seems to be another reason why I should write it down for the benefit of new generations. I know that life is but a temporary “station” or a stop in the infinite life and death process in Samsara. So if my life could be an inspiration to someone, then the writing of it will not be in vain”, she writes.
The book covers her childhood, youth, professional life, marriage, the sad loss of a daughter and son and her turning to Buddhism. She reminisces that becoming a Bhikkhuni was an unprecedented uphill battle. Then again, she had never actually planned to become a Bhikkhuni.
She was raised in a deeply religious household by nationalist-Buddhist parents of the anti-colonial “Buddhist cultural renaissance”. She grew up learning the Buddhist sutras her grandmother chanted in her native Matara dialect. Her religious life continued, as she became a science teacher, married and had six children. The family observed sil on Vesak and gave regular alms to monks. In the ’70s during the food shortages, she fed and bathed the poor children who flocked to the gates begging for food.
Her life changed when, at the Sri Jayewardenepura University studying for a Master’s Degree in Buddhism, she stumbled across the Therigatha, the Psalms of the Buddhist Nuns. The Therigatha “filled her mind with thoughts of enlightenment for women,” especially about the Ten Precept nuns (Dasasil mathas). She secured a small research grants for a doctoral thesis on Dasasil Mathas.
The nuns “strikingly” revealed that neither the monks order nor the government gave them recognition or respect. Dasasil Mathas were a marginalised community in society, their poor living standards obstructing their religious aspirations. Consumed by the subject, she appealed to the President that the government should care for the nuns as much as the monks. She recalls that President J.R. Jayawardene smiled and told her “Madam, I am not going to put my finger into such a controversial thing.”
Nevertheless, he entrusted his wife with the nuns’ matters and finally established a separate section in the Buddha Sasana Ministry for the nuns, which was shut down when it fell under the Monks’ Advisory Board.
Unfazed, she continued her research taking up a subject unknown in Sri Lanka, the bhikkhuni vinaya. At the time, many thought the order of bhikkhunis wouldn’t be revived in Sri Lanka until the advent of the Maithriya Buddha.
The most notable attempt at reviving the bhikkhuni order after its disappearance following the fall of the Anuradhapura kingdom occurred in the early 1900s when Catherine de Alwis, an affluent Catholic woman turned Buddhist, went to Burma and was ordained as Sudarmachari. However, upon her return to Sri Lanka, the male monks here did not recognise her ordination, told her to exchange her brown robes for yellow ones and accepted her only as a ‘Dasasil Matha’, a status not part of the original Sasana fourfold. Though the nuns follow the same ten precepts as the monks, they are not recognised and respected as such.
Bhikkhuni Kusuma quotes Sudarmachari to describe the current situation of nuns: “The Buddha Sasana, like a table rests upon four legs: the bhikku, bhikkhuni, male upasika and female upasik. The bhikkhuni leg is no more, leaving the table shaking and unstable.”
First step:The Dasasil Matha Ordination at the Kelaniya Raja Maha Temple
By this time, she writes in the book that she had renounced house and home and devoted herself to a path of meditation and Dhamma. “Even though I was neither shaven-headed nor wearing robes, I actually lived the life of an ascetic practicing the precepts of a Buddhist Nun in contemplation and piety.”
When she approached Ven. Vipulasara Thera to re-establish the Bhikkhuni order after the Sakyadhitha International Conference in 1993 along with Dr. Hema Gunatilleke and Ranjani de Silva, the move stirred up much controversy. Despite the backlash, about 200 nuns were interviewed for ordination. Nine candidates were chosen and she taught them English prior to their travel to Saranath where Ven. Vipulasara Thera suggested the ceremony be held, Saranath being the place where Lord Buddha had preached His first sermon. She herself travelled to Korea spending three months studying the ordination procedures. It was then that Ven. Vipulasara Thera had called her to announce that he was under attack from all quarters over the reinstatement of the Bhikkhuni order and it could not go through.
She pleaded with the Thera to go ahead regardless. Already a substantial amount had been spent arranging the ceremony in Saranath. The Thera replied, “In that case, there’s only one solution. You are the only person I know committed and qualified enough.” He wanted her to give leadership to the nuns being ordained.
It was a challenge she heard in stunned silence, a decision then made for the “liberation of all womanhood.” She was first ordained as a Dasasil Matha at Kelaniya Raja Maha Viharaya and then along with the nine others ordained a bhikkhuni at Saranath.
Some refused to accept their ordination, claiming it was done according to the Mahayana tradition. Bhikkuni Kusuma responds that it’s a misinterpretation. Historically, Sri Lankan bhikkhunis established the bhikkhuni order in China in 429 CE, and the tradition was preserved in East Asia where it thrived while in Theravada countries it died out. “It’s a matter of getting it back,” Bhikkhuni Kusuma says.
“All this resistance is nothing but monks wanting their supremacy and fear that bhikkhunis would do better,” she adds. “There is brahministic male chauvinism very well apparent in the Sangha but this is no idea of the Buddha.”
Since her ordination, there have been over a thousand Bhikkhunis ordained in the country but still the Bhikkhuni order is not organised.
Bhikkhuni Kusuma says she’s “happier” now focusing on social welfare programmes from her Meditation Centre, instead of pushing for bhikkhuni recognition in Sri Lanka. But she is more than willing to take up the cause internationally, where there is much interest. Since 1996 she has travelled extensively and marvels that 16 years ago when she left hearth and home, she thought “I may well be on the road with no one to care for me”. She writes, “I thought I am too old now to work once I retired from my profession, but here I am, conducting lectures and meditation sessions around the world!”
Her next project, she writes in the book is to establish a hostel for women and nuns in Colombo so that laywomen and nuns who need accommodation would have a place to stay while they complete their work. “I am hoping that with everyone’s help I would be lucky enough to see its completion during my lifetime.”


Tuesday, November 6, 2012

TN should not dictate policy on Sri Lanka: Swamy

New Delhi,
The Hindu Janata Party president Subramanian Swamy. File Photo
Janata Party president Subramanian Swamy on Thursday demanded that the Centre issue a direction to Tamil Nadu government to “stop interfering” in the country’s policy on Sri Lanka and also ensure the safety of Sinhalas in the state.
In a statement in New Delhi, he said President’s rule should be imposed in Tamil Nadu if the state government fails to follow the directions. “I demand that the Union Government send Tamil Nadu Government a direction under Article 256 of the Constitution to stop interfering in India’s foreign policy on Sri Lanka and also ensure safety of Sinhalas in the state,” he said.
“If the Chief Minister fails to follow the direction then President’s rule should be imposed in the state,” Mr. Swamy said.
The Janata Party president also demanded that the Madhya Pradesh government arrest MDMK chief Vaiko if he protests against Sri Lankan President Mahinda Rajapaksa’s visit to the state later this month.