What a lovely photo of Sri Lankan President Rajapaksa’s family that appears in the country’s Sunday Observer newspaper today. I wonder if they drink Tamil blood with a glass of red wine. As the UN releases its report on Colombo’s murder of tens of thousands of Tamil civilians during the country’s civil war – and yes,there are profound issues with the UN investigating itself when there are serious questions about its own alleged complicity in failing to act to protect civilians – Sri Lanka’s largely pro-state media is going into overdrive. Here’s one article in today’s Sunday Observer:
“The World’s Sixth Most Influential Personality. Isn’t the ideal New Year gift for the leader for his astute political leadership?” President Mahinda Rajapaksa, who proved that nothing is impossible if there is a will and dedication, bridged the gap between the once divided two communities Sinhala and Tamils – and received the prestigious New Year gift the day after the Sinhala and Tamil New Year. A poll conducted by the US based magazine TIME – listed President Mahinda Rajapaksa as the sixth out of 100 most influential persons of 2011. It is a co-incidence where that on the same day the UN Secretary General’s panel, which released its final report on the alleged war crimes during the final days of the end battle against the LTTE in May 2009, drew attention to the government’s accountability in handling the end battle. According to sources close to President Rajapaksa, the intention of featuring him in the TIME polls was to create a negative image of him. It is shown clearly in the brief introduction of him, which states: “Since ending Sri Lanka’s 26-year-long war against the Tigers in 2009, and grabbing control over once independent institutions such as commissions on human rights and elections, Mahinda Rajapaksa has come to dominate the institutions of his nation more than any other democratically elected head of State. He challenged the US., the European Union and the UN to prosecute him for war crimes, confident that Russia, China and India would not support it, the latter two have billions of investment at stake in Sri Lanka.” The sources said the pro-LTTE Tamil Diaspora led a secret campaign to make him unpopular to rank him at the lowest position. But, the patriotic Sri Lankans, including the Tamils who were convinced of his endeavours to liberate the country from the clutches of the LTTE terrorism, had voted for him to defeat the pro-LTTE elements. Being the very first Sri Lankan leader to be featured in TIME magazine’s 100 Top Ten, he reached the sixth position ahead of all powerful and popular figures of the world including famous WikiLeaks creator Julian Assange, who has been ranked 11 in the polls. Ranking as the sixth among the 203 personalities is not only his personal achievement but a victory for the country itself. This has endorsed his commitment to eradicate terrorism and also drive the country towards a peaceful new era in the aftermath of a deadly battle against terrorism that plagued the country for nearly 30 years. The recognition by the TIME polls is also a tribute to a great Asian leader who did not kneel down before the West. It is also a tribute to the leader who trusted and believed in the unity among the Asian region nation.
And this editorial about the nation’s glorious economic growth. Message to the world? Stop bugging us about these war crimes distractions and murder of civilians; we just want to talk about jobs!
Sri Lanka last year registered its second highest economic growth since independence and the highest in 32 years, according to the 2010 Central Bank of Sri Lanka (CBSL) Annual Report. The CBSL report released on New Year’s Eve was indeed a welcome sign and an indication that the country is marching triumphantly towards further economic prosperity. Based on the impressive economic indicators achieved during the past few years, Sri Lanka could well consolidate its position to become the ‘Wonder of Asia’ sooner than later. Moreover, the New Year will help bring about a renewal in spirit and fresh expectations. The Sinhalese and the Tamils all over the country are still in an exuberant mood enjoying the New Year festivities as never before. The peaceful atmosphere to enjoy the New Year in its true spirit sans any fear and security concerns was made possible only after the country achieved its true freedom after the Security Forces freed the country from the clutches of LTTE terror in May 2009. With the successful economic growth and the people getting about freely for the New Year celebrations, we recall the immense sacrifices made by the Security Forces in vanquishing the LTTE terrorists. … All these superlative achievements have been made possible due to the right economic policies implemented under the Mahinda Chinthana. Political stooges who expressed reservations on the President’s ability to manage the economy in 2005 had to eat humble pie eventually. President Rajapaksa has laid the foundation to take Sri Lanka towards new economic horizons. It is abundantly clear that Sri Lanka could achieve double digit economic growth if the right economic policies introduced under the Mahinda Chinthana are maintained under the President’s illustrious leadership.
The authorities in Sri Lanka are under mounting pressure to agree to an independent inquiry into a military operation against Tamil rebels, after a UN panel found “credible allegations” that the government committed war crimes and offences against humanity. A leaked report by a team established by UN Secretary General, Ban Ki-moon, suggests government troops systematically shelled civilians it had encouraged to gather in so-called “no-fire zones”, at hospitals, at the UN’s hub, and even close to an area where aid workers from the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) were coming to collect wounded people from the beach. It says the government allowed this even though it knew from its own intelligence the impact of the repeated bombardment. The panel, which calls for an independent international inquiry, concludes that “tens of thousands” of civilians lost their lives, and that most casualties in the final phases of the war were caused by government shelling. It says the government sought to intimidate and silence the media and its critics, and even resorted to abduction, using “white vans” to make people disappear. The report says there is evidence that Tamil rebels also committed war crimes and that they used civilians as human shields, shot dead those who tried to flee the war zone, and forcibly recruited teenagers to become fighters. The damning report, parts of which have been leaked to media in Sri Lanka, is likely to be the most comprehensive insight yet into the bloody final stages of the 2009 offensive that crushed the rebel Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE, known as the Tamil Tigers) and brought an end to a decades-long civil war that had taken more than 70,000 lives. At the time, there was widespread international criticism of the way the government had failed to protect Tamil civilians caught in the war zone. But the authorities dismissed this and President Mahinda Rajapaksa was re-elected the following year on the back of his victory over the rebels. The UN has yet to make public the report or comment on the recommendations of the three-member panel. However,Gordon Weiss, a former spokesman for the UN in Sri Lanka who served in the capital, Colombo, during the offensive against the LTTE, said the report “damns the government of Sri Lanka’s so-called war on terror, which incidentally killed many thousands of civilians. The Tamil Tigers were equally rotten in their disdain for life.”
What a shock to actually read something on this issue that discusses the reality for Palestinians under Zionist occupation:
Letter to Marrickville Council from concerned citizens of Israel urging you to stand firm in your support of BDS We are Israeli citizens who witness first-hand the brutality of our government’s policies towards the Palestinian people. We stand firm in our support of Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) initiatives against Israel until it meets its obligation to recognize the Palestinian people’s inalienable right to self-determination, and fully complies with the precepts of international law. We reject the notion promoted by demagogues, that the 2005 BDS call from Palestine, and the BDS campaigns the world over which it has inspired, are rooted in anti-Jewish sentiment. On the contrary, BDS is an anti-racist movement against the daily, brutal occupation of Palestine and the virulently racist policies towards Israel’s Palestinian citizens. We also reject the assertion that cultural and academic boycotts of Israel defy the democratic principle of free speech. Research and development in academic institutions play a central role in designing and defending Israel’s military and intelligence machinery. Prominent state-sponsored cultural institutions perpetuate the deception of Israeli democracy, and serve as propaganda tools. Moreover, the BDS campaign targets Israeli institutions, and does not bar Israeli individuals from conducting research with partners abroad or Israeli artists from performing abroad. BDS was a key strategy in ending the white South African system of apartheid by applying international pressure. We warmly commend the groundbreaking stand taken by the Marrickville Council in support of the Council in support of the democratic and non-violent BDS campaign for justice and human rights and urge the council to stand firm in the face of attempted intimidation and manipulation. Sincerely, Steve Amsel Ronnen Ben-Arie Matan Cohen Adi Dagan Prof. Rachel Giora Rosamine Hayeem Iris Hefets Shir Hever Yael Kahn Dr. Anat Matar Rela Mazali Professor (emeritus) Moshé Machover Dr. Dorothy Naor Ofer Neiman Amit Perelson Itai Ryb Herzl Schubert Yonatan Shapira Jonatan Stanczak Ruth Tenne Yana Ziferblat On behalf of Boycott! Supporting the Palestinian BDS Call from within http://boycottisrael.info/ contact info phone: 972-544-740825 boycottisrael.info
Murdoch columnist Miranda Devine enjoys Israel courtesy of the NSW Jewish Board of Deputies (2009 and 2010). She obviously saw the real Israel and occupied Palestine. Oh wait, her hand was held and she only saw what her Zionist guests allowed (and she clearly wasn’t curious to look at anywhere else herself). Her column today is in this glorious tradition, talking about Marrickville council embracing BDS:
Jake, a 55-year-old Jewish health professional with friends in Marrickville, was so incensed by the council’s Israel boycott that he took three weeks off work to wage a guerrilla campaign against the Greens, plastering the suburb with posters late at night, accusing them of homophobia for boycotting gay-friendly Israel. “I felt so angry,” says Jake, who wants to remain anonymous. “I couldn’t sleep at night, so I organised the posters, hired some utes and ladders” and enlisted the help of his son and his friends. Greens supporters harassed them, ripped down the posters, called police, and tried to intimidate Jake’s young helpers, posting footage of them on YouTube. Two nights before the election, a “black sports car with neon high beams and a pseudo photographer kept flashing his camera right up on our eyes . . . It slowed us right down.” Another night “cowboy” greenies in a Toyota Camry started following them home, until Jake confronted the driver at a roundabout. “It was like something out of a movie”. On election day, Jake and his son organised 10 friends wearing T-shirts with “Boycott the Greens” logos to visit polling booths, prompting “Zionist pigs” abuse from greenies. “The Greens knew we were the enemy, but the Labor people all nodded and smiled and gave us the thumbs up. Anthony Albanese [whose wife Carmel Tebbutt was ALP candidate] shook my hand and thanked me. We must have had quite an effect. “On Sunday I took the boys out to dinner. It’s not often in life a private citizen can make a difference.” After all, as Jake points out, if they actually cared about the environment or human rights they would realise Israel is the only democracy in the Middle East, and the only country in the region where people can be openly and proudly gay. Israel’s neighbours, meantime, routinely stone homosexuals to death. Israel is also the Middle East’s Eden, having greened the desert with millions of trees, eco friendly exports, and superior water conservation.
A few thoughts. Devine’s points on Israeli “democracy” are the perfect talking points given to her on numerous trips to the Zionist state. Standard propaganda. But “Jake” and his admissions are released at a curious time when it still remains unknown who daubed swastikas on Greens election posters.
Whatever it takes to “defend” Israel. And the Zionist community remain silent, more than happy for anonymous people to launch undemocratic attacks against a political party. The Murdoch press march proudly behind them.
Zionism infects the mind.