Categorized | South Asian Politics

The bitter lesson from Geneva

Posted on 30 March 2012 by admin


Sri Lanka

It’s all over now – at least the phase of the voting where we were assured.

This despite our frontline brilliant men and women in our jumbo delegation assuring they will humble Goliath with consummate ease. Predictably and in the inherent nature of things down this part of the world, it will only be the very naive who will summon that necessary grace to admit their part in the failure. And those who raised hopes most of the Latin American countries in the UNHRC will vote with us too failed to deliver. The suggestion was we have won them over with “our” camaraderie and expertise on Latin American affairs. Neither did various forms of intimidation and harassment by government-inspired and financed mobs right in the precincts of the UN/Geneva bring us any credit. It certainly brought us an inelegant tongue-lash from the HC/HRC. As the London-based Economist concluded, the ground reality in Geneva has changed since 2009 when we happened to escape from the very issues – that came under scrutiny in Geneva this week.

Geneve is now fait accompli. What, pray tell us, should we be doing now is the concern of the country. The answer does not rest in the official Rottweiler seeking a human sacrifice, in the form of a child, to do that necessary hooniam to be rid of the bad spell on His Majesty. Even the open attacks by journos identified as Rajapakse apologists in their pages; the crude anti-Indian language of Ministers like Sirisena must give way soon so that the Rajapakses engage Delhi once again for their own survival, they cannot do otherwise. It requires a combination of brains, courage and gratitude from the regime to express to India their appreciation for more reasons than succeeding in getting the Americans to accept that saving grace of including the words “in consultation with and with due concurrence of GoSL in implementing the Resolution.” The other favour India did was to get us an year’s time to carry out the LLRC recommendations whereas the Americans insisted on “early and visible steps” with the Office of the UNHRC monitoring progress. Encouraging a few hundreds Buddhist priests to irreverently shout opposite the Indian High Commission in Colombo certainly is not one of the choices. Working up the local media and the Weerawansa-Ranawake-Mervin Silva ilk of Ministers that Tamilnadu put the spanner in the works will not hold much water in actual terms. In the DR Nanayakkara language the Rajapakses understand easily “we must know our size.” The fault was entirely the Rajapakses who failed to recognise the importance of the counselling Delhi was offering them for some time in various stages – the final phase of which was the visit of Minister S.M. Krishna. Trying to make a liar of Mr. Krishna may not have been taken far too well by the South Bloc.

If one is to go by the nature and history of the Rajapakses, they will stall what has been imposed on them last Thursday. The usual charade of inspired rent-a-mob facades; thousands of Buddhist priests taking the streets; encouraging sycophant journos to whip up anti-Indianism, anti-West sentiments are scenes likely to follow. This will, necessarily, result in exposing the Rajapakses to more serious steps later in the form of travel sanctions and the like. Whether we are signatories to the Treaty of Rome or not are technicalities that will fall by the wayside when the Big Leaguers decide to act – as they did in Geneva.

Sri Lanka’s immediate salvation lies in giving their Tamil citizens their long-denied dues – some of which identified in the State-inspired LLRC itself. More important – necessary for a smooth Rajapakse innings – will be to bring in better brains to handle the economy. If the Lankan Rupee goes down to Rs.150 for the US$ from the present level of Rs.131 by July – as market sources predict – then we will be half down the Zimbabwe road. Neither Rajapakses, Wickramasinghes orRanawakes will be able to do sweet nothing if that is going to be Sri Lanka’s imposed fate.

Courtesy: Sri Lanka Guardian

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