By Izeth Hussain (Island)
The question of Sri Lanka‘s sovereignty looms large in the political consciousness of many Sri Lankans today. There are two major reasons for this, the first of which is that in the novel geopolitical configuration in South Asia there is a heavy Chinese presence which could prompt India to want to get a control over Sri Lanka. The other is that Sri Lanka ‘s further economic development obviously dictates some sort of opening out to India which would inevitably spell close linkages with the Dravidian states of South India which are proving to be among the most dynamic in India today. Those linkages might be seen as leading to dependence and satellisation.
Those two factors should be situated in the context of Sri Lanka’s peculiar, indeed disgusting, politics of today. It is a politics in which a rank hedonism is the hallmark of the power elite, a politics in which self-interest and group interests reign supreme with little or no regard for moral scruple, a politics in which the Opposition can be expected to sabotage every Government initiative regardless of the national interest if there is the slightest room for controversy, a politics in which the Government plays far more of a divisive than the unificatory role expected of it, a politics in which many Sri Lankans believe that a substantial proportion of our politicians can be bought and sold like potatoes. Given these factors the prospects for the continuance of Sri Lanka’s sovereignty look dim, quite dim.
Cartoon added by TW
A major purpose of this article is to point out that there was a serious erosion of sovereignty under the last Government. We have to be emphatic on this because the Opposition holds that the last Government was authentically nationalist whereas the present one is expected to sell the country to the West. The truth, the horrible truth, is that it was the last Government that acquiesced in, connived at, and virtually supported a very serious erosion of our sovereignty. We refer to the Islamophobic hate campaign of the BBS. It was quite evidently well funded, supposedly by Norwegian Christian fundamentalist groups.
It is well known of course that Christian fundamentalist groups have engaged in an internationally widespread Islamophobic campaign through the internet and are splendidly countered by Islamic groups. But there does not seem to have been any other Islamophobic hate campaign conducted within a country comparable to the one in Sri Lanka. Furthermore the BBS campaign obviously had an international dimension, shown in the connection with the Wirathu gang in Myanmar. We must recall also that according to former President Rajapakse the BBS campaign was part of an international conspiracy to overthrow his Government. There is no record of Christian fundamentalist groups having been engaged in programmes of that sort anywhere else in the world: their purpose is to spread their versions of Christianity, and not to engage in programs to overthrow Governments. Obviously in the case of the BBS they were acting as proxies for Israel. It is well established that the last Government allowed wide latitude for the BBS’ hate campaign, even going to the extent of placing its leaders above the law. We can conclude therefore that Israel was guilty of outrageously blatant interference in our internal affairs, and it would not be excessive to say that the last Government was guilty of acquiescing in, conniving at, and virtually supporting a very serious erosion of our sovereignty.
Recently one of the two main propagandists who have been attacking this writer in the columns of the Colombo Telegraph, Backlash, declared his dog-like devotion to apartheid Israel and in the same breath declared that it was Israel that had backed the BBS campaign. That declaration can be interpreted in many ways. It does seem to bespeak some degree of arrogance on the part of Israel, shown in the expectation that a Zionist agent could openly declare Israel’s blatant interference in our internal affairs without Israel having to face adverse consequences. It was, in effect, a declaration of Israel’s sinister power in Sri Lanka. It certainly had that kind of power under the last Government: otherwise the wide latitude allowed to the BBS hate campaign cannot be explained. Does it have that kind of sinister power under the present Government as well? Whatever the answer might be the facts point to one conclusion, an inescapable conclusion. If the Government really values Sri Lanka’s sovereignty even to a slight degree, it should brook no interference whatever in our internal affairs, certainly not the kind of blatant Israeli interference that there was under the last Government. The inescapable conclusion is that the Government should institute a full-scale inquiry into Israeli interference in our internal affairs.
As the writer has been pointing out in recent articles the Islamophobic hate campaign has been continuing though on a lesser scale. Can the Government safely ignore that fact? The last Government evidently believed that it could contain the BBS hate campaign without allowing it to ignite into a full-scale genocidal 1983 holocaust against the Muslims. The present Government probably holds the same belief. It will do well to bear certain facts in mind. One is that Islamophobic hatred is now fairly widespread in Sri Lanka, as shown by the recent vandalization of mosques about which the Government doesn’t seem to care two hoots. The Government should also bear in mind the fact that one of the motivations behind the 1915 anti-Muslim riots was the desire of Sinhalese businessmen to take Muslim business into their own hands, and a similar motivation was a potent factor behind the 1983 holocaust. Above all the Government must bear in mind the following two facts: the British Government of 1915 never wanted those riots to take place but they did all the same, and secondly there could be sinister forces who would want another 1915 or even another 1983 as that could help destroy the unity of this country.
The Islamophobic hate campaign has certainly continued in the columns of the Colombo Telegraph. One of the regular propagandists, Backlash, seems to have dropped out but others have made their appearance, equally bizarre and equally stupid in their disregard for fact and reason and the high valuation they place on flung filth. One of the established regulars, Kettikaran, poor fellow, seems now to be in a totally hysterical state. But he seems to have broken new ground in the propaganda campaign. He used to keep on alleging that I advocated famine as a way of defeating the LTTE, and after some time I took to asking the readers to get to Google and click on “Izeth Hussain’s reply to K.Arvind 2006”. I found to my surprise recently that the connected correspondence that used to appear no longer appears. Has that been excised by Kettikaran and his neo-Nazi Zionista buddies? Anyone interested in their antics should now turn to something like “K.Arvind – Girls and Decency 2006” which will take him to a letter by me in The Island strongly advising against the use of famine to subdue the LTTE. The Zionistas really are bizarre and stupid.