“One Mullivaikkal is enough. Don’t try to get 100 more.”
Oh God the British never told the French ‘one Waterloo is enough. Don’t try to get 100 more’. What kind of a speech is this? Is this the tolerance Lord Buddha taught or his disciples learnt?
A Tamilnadu newspaper in her editorial said, ‘Emperor Asoka, seeing the killing, blood shed and the destruction in the battle field, vowed not to wage war again and accepted the peaceful path of Lord Buddha. Here a minister who calls himself as an ardent follower of Gautama glories war. How come’?
The government has not commented . May be no one has authority in the absence of the Captain or they just close their eyes.
People who hold power have responsibility over their words and deeds than those in the opposition. This is the time to forget the past and proceed for future prosperity. But such irresponsible talk from responsible people would turn the cart to opposite road only. That way the country will never reach the desired destination but will keep travelling hoping against hope.
Many countries that underwent ethnic mayhem have recovered admirably. Take Malaysia. The Malay- Chinese Riots of 13 May 1969 was nothing similar to the 1983 July riots in Sri Lanka. But the government had sincere intention to defeat- defuse it. The Prime Minister Tunku Abdul Rahman came on the television in two hours and wept expressing his agony.
Look at what he has written;
‘..…A phone call came through at 6.45pm that an ugly incident had taken place along Jalan Raja Muda in which some Chinese were assaulted.
Immediately afterwards Enche Mansor, the Kuala Lumpur Police Traffic Chief, and one or two others, came to see me and said that there had been killing. The city had been placed under immediate curfew as at 7 pm. The Security Forces were out, the army called in.
Naturally I could not sleep that night, my mind upset with the tragedy that had overtaken our peaceful capital and nation. I went out side my balcony outside my room looking down on the city in the valley by night. Flames were burning high in several areas, near Kampong Bharu and to the North.
Kuala Lumpur was a city on fire and it was a sight that I never thought I would see in my lifetime.’
This kind of concern for the minority from the majority saved the country.
Further, Malaysia and Singapore before the British had no English speaking population. Teachers and clerical staffs were recruited from the Northern Sri Lanka while enterprising traders from the South went on their own establishing business. Today these two countries have substantial amount of Sri Lankan students. We taught them to speak English but now they teach us higher education.
Ceylon was the second richest next to Japan in Asia before the independence. Countries like Korea, China and Middle East were far behind. Today our youths seek employment in Korea, standing in long queue before the Korean embassy in Colombo. Our sisters run to the Gulf, risking life, honesty and morality to keep the home fire burning. Poverty stricken- famine prone China is our financier today and Malaysia is an important investor.
Look at Maldives. On tourism, they were living on what was left on our plate. Today they have hotel room rates few times higher than ours with full occupancy. Our media said 17% increase in tourist visit in May. But hoteliers say May was the worst month. This is how this country has prospered after the independence.
Why? We have learnt from history that we do not learn from history. This land has all the natural resources and blessed by God as a paradise, but, if the ethnic flame is kept ignited like in this manner by powerful people, the country will have no future and the flame will engulf the nation one day. 30 year trauma is to be forgotten not reminded.
Besides, this is electronic era. The world is well knit with web net. Staying on the roof one may shout boldly sitting on his strength. The weak may keep mum. But your vociferous voice is heard all over the globe in few seconds. It provokes many. Not only those ethnically connected but also other fair minded people too.
Present day VIPs do not seem to have understood the power of computers. I do not think many know how to handle it. Though some may keep punching letters, very few can do finger touch. That way they are not of this world.
Reputation is important. During Vietnam war, Vietnamese used to say as long as our country name appears in the newspaper, we would not prosper. Similarly it is the duty of the Lankan VIPs not to allow the country’s name to come in the media with ethnically negative news.