The Season of Hope

I have stopped watching the news. There is nothing much on tv on Sri Lanka anymore. The war is over, an occasional finger-pointing hits the news and fades away like a ship sailing in the night. Unnoticed.

There is a lot of war-news. Bombs going off in Iraq, Pakistan, Afghanistan and in Russia. There is a lot of civilian casualty that Amnesty International or the Human Rights Watch is not interested in. The video footage of US Forces firing at Reuters reporters has leaked out after three years, but we hear no French or British voices wanting to take them to the UN Human Rights Council for the war crimes they commit in foreign lands.

I’d say f-off to those hypocrites.

I’d say f-off to those who think that my country deserves to be labelled as a failed state. And to you Ranil, Mangala, Sarath and the lot who think that Sri Lanka has problems and the West is the answer, the saviour and the solution.

The war is over. For the first time in almost three decades, we are able to celebrate the Sinhala Hindu New Year without worrying about a bus bomb or an artillery fire. This year, there will be millions of homes celebrating the new year in whatever way they could afford. Grand or not, there will be a pot of milk-rice boiling in every kitchen, come mid April.

For the first time in thirty years, “Sinhala Hindu” new year has a meaning. For the first time in a generation, the Sinhalese and the Tamils are able to celebrate their traditions with a smile in their faces.

Happy New Year and happy holidays everyone, may your life be filled with love, laughter, happiness and prosperity – always.


  1. Hear Hear!
    My sentiments exactly, very nicely put, SI!

    Happy new year to you too!! :) (I know there are no holidays here :)

  2. Sabby, know any place we can get hold of a piece of kiribath..? Oh, how I miss the avurudu treats back home...

  3. I understand your views on the matter SI and I honour your right to express them. I hope you won't take this comment in the wrong way, but this is how I see the situation.

    With all due respect, I believe Sri Lanka does have problems and no proper plan to deal with them. I listened to what Ranil had to say in his interview with Sanjana, and he talked about a South African style truth and reconciliation commission, where both parties admit to the war crimes that they committed, so that both Sinhalese and Tamils understand how much suffering the other party went through. This in his opinion is the only way we can get over the bullshit of the past and move forward in a unified manner.

    And instead, we have a government that maintains that no civilians were ever killed in the war! How is that justice to the people who lost their relatives in the Wanni? How is it justice for the people who lost their relatives to the white van? We need closure and understanding and to move on, but what we have instead is Sinhala triumphalism and an empty plate for the Tamils...

    Again, I hope you aren't offended mate... :)

  4. Wish you the same man! Very nicely put indeed!

    And here's to us unfortunate souls who will go to work on 14th and eat burgers on that day. LOL.

  5. Last time I heard Ranil and Mangala were in Sri Lanka, not in West pursuing luxury.

    And Sarath? seriously dude he was fighting for 35 years for our country. If you want to get rid of the inferior complexity of abandoning your country take it on Ranil or Managal but don't try to be a joker by questioning loyalty of Sarath.

  6. Hey SI, I don't agree 100% with your views on this one but I wish you a happy new year and, more importantly, the best of luck in your kiribath search!

  7. It's deluded morons like you who perpetuate the corruption in this country.
    Your maudlin assertions of 'hope' and 'first time sinhalese/tamil new year is "meaningful"' are just pathetic.
    No one is saying the west is the answer. but there is a difference between being nationalistic and being a complete idiot. Mahinda and Co. are evil-yah so they massacred the people in the north. That doesn't mean there is peace and progress here. And it certainly doesn't mean we have to vote for them. Voting must be based on what the politician can do in the future, not vague gratitude for what has already happened. What will this government do in the future? they are alienating the foreign powers and have no economic policy at all. ARe u paying taxes? Do you know how much in debt SL is? Do you want to be in a country where just challenging the president warrants being sent to jail with fabricated charges.

  8. Happy new year to you too! Sri Lanka will shine, no matter what.
    I am sure there are many Sri Lankans enjoying the new year, in the country and elsewhere. Peace.

  9. I'd be happy to see Mervin lose. Similarly some hacked old papas like gamini lokuge, dm jayaratne etc.. Yes, Ranil too. Why he still thinks he can CONTRIBUTE to SL is beyond me.

    As for kiribath, make yours. Just buy the ingredients and MAKE :)

    Happy new year, whoever you are . Glad to have stumbled on the blog while looking for election news..

  10. @Chavie: Thanks mate for your comments - don’t worry I would not take it the wrong way. ;)

    Chavie, there are three things in my life that I will never forget. One, I was caught in the looting and “massacre” of the Black July ’83. I have seen a family of four burning alive inside a car in front of the Pamankada bo tree. I was a small school kid, walking home with my science teacher and a few other staff and kids from my school. The long walk from Colombo 7 to Nugegoda was not a pretty sight I tell you – and if I were in the victim’s side, I too would have taken up arms against the Sinhalese.

    Two: The ’88-90 Insurgency. If there is anyone who needs to apologize for the atrocities committed, the mainstream JVP should be the first to do that; they need to surrender their weapons (which they never did) and return the wealth looted from the public. They could behave all patriotic now, but they have destroyed more public assets than the LTTE for sure. They have killed (or have been the cause of death) more Sinhalese than the LTTE.

    Three: The war in Wanni. I used to travel frequently to the north between 2005-2008 while I was in SL with the govt forces as well as the TNA – and I know what I am talking about. My opinion may not agree with yours, but that is perfectly alright.

    Now, to the reconciliation.

    It took a few generations before the Japanese apologised to the Koreans.
    The Brits never acknowledged or apologized for their war crimes during the last world war, up to date.
    The Brits are the main cause of Israeli/Plaestine conflict, not a word of apology; not even a hint of regret.
    South Africa also took generations to come to where it is today.

    What you are saying is fine, and sound perfect: an apology should be made. But this is not the right time, we have not yet reached a ‘comfort zone’ to do that. My point is, reconciliation is a long process. It starts with hope. It begins with the belief of a better tomorrow. Ranil’s theories would only work in books, an apology would work towards the last part of reconciliation – which, might be in another 15-20 years..?

    @Sach: Thanks, yep, McDonald’s for me too!

    @Liberal Lanka: IMO, a person’s integrity is in his deeds, not words. I wouldn’t trust a man who betrayed friendship, loyalty and sworn commitment to the military – no matter what his words say. His “loyalty” is in his actions, we have seen them all. SF is as dirty as the Rajapakses, if not worse.

    Does not mean to say I endorse the brotherhood, but I am saying that this is the time we should look at our future with hope.

    @ RD: Happy new year, and I hope I would be able to find some. LOL.

  11. @Magerata: Yes, Sri Lanka will shine, no matter what!

  12. @Mohammed: I would be happy to see the old driftwood float away too.

    But I think it is the system that conceals the wrong-doings of our MP’s and encourages them to behave badly; there is no accountability for their actions at all. I have written a post on this earlier, please read if you have the time:


    Yes, I too think I should make my own kiribath. ;) And thank you.

  13. @Anonymous:

    Happy New Year to you too.

    I am delusional. If I think only Sri Lanka is corrupt. According to public opinion, UK and France are equally corrupt, USA is even more corrupt than us. Visit Gallup Org to check it yourself; or read my post (http://wijitha.blogspot.com/2010/03/appeal-to-sri-lankan-media.html)

    Yes, I am a moron. For having hope for my country, for believing in our strengths. Yes, I am sentimental – it is MY country.

    If the most important cultural event of the year is not meaningful to you, I wonder who’s pathetic. A shame, if you are Sri Lankan. A pity, if you are Tamil or Sinhalese.

    Stand by the roadside and count the number of new red buses plying the roads, drive outside Colombo and discover the new roads. Visit Badulla and see the new post office complex, or the Uva university. Or sit in your armchair and wonder how come the economy stays stable and there is a positive growth rate – in a country that just ended a war. Either way, you will discover there is significant government investment taking place. How much of that goes in to the pockets of the brotherhood is a different matter – even if 80% goes to their pockets, there is 20% going in to getting something done. That is, by far, better than Chandrika and the previous governments.

    We are far from being perfect. We are far from where we should be.

    Don’t bark up the same tree, the President is not the only person who is accountable for everything that goes wrong in our country. Go, visit your MP and tell him why he should be doing his job; hold HIM accountable.

    Make complaints, take action. See how much you could do to fix the problems.

    If you keep focusing on the negatives, you will never see the positive side of our beautiful country.

    And yes, I do pay taxes. Yes, I do have a business in Sri Lanka and I do have loans and I do know the interest rates and the cost of living.

    Sri Lanka’s debt is around 86% of the GDP; where as Japan’s debt is almost double their GDP. Now, look at the “West” and learn from their mistakes, don’t blindly follow them. We need the west to consume our products – physical or intellectual – but we aren’t producing much at the moment, are we?

    Oh, BTW, be brave enough not to be anonymous. Don’t blame the country if you don’t have a backbone. Perhaps a surgery in the West would fix the matter.

  14. I've hardly seen people getting owned as the above Anon friend of ours did.

  15. Oh BURN! I loved reading that comeback! :D

    And as to Kiribath, there's a place called Arab Lanka close to the Sri Lankan International School. They should serve all sorts of stuff around New Years :)

    Or I could just send you a recipe :P

  16. @Sach: ;)

    @Sabby: :D
    Thank you so much, I must find the place. Oh I know how to cook a good kiribath but the trouble would be preparing the katta sambal! You know, I’d love to have the “kotapu” or ”ambarapu” kind...

    So far, the plan is to trouble my friend’s lunch lady – she could get it done for us.

  17. i have katta sambol all ready for the 14th..wanna drop by???:)

  18. Penny, you are a great party organiser - you can't escape with just katta sambol. :D

  19. Hahahaa...awesome post...had a few comments about the issue but you have perfectly dealt with em in the comments.:D!

    Wish you a joyous new year ! Really hope u find some awesome kiribath over there!!

  20. http://www.amnesty.org/en/news-and-updates/us-helicopter-killings-iraq-must-be-independently-investigated-2010-04-07

  21. Also



  22. Can I join you in saying 'f-off to those hypocrites.'?
    Happy New Year SI. It is indeed great to be celebrating it in a peaceful land!

  23. @Jack Point: Thanks a lot for the links.

    @Santhoshi & Sue:
    Happy new year to you and your families. ;)

  24. Belated Happy New Year to you Serendib. You've been catching up on reading my posts so I am doing the same on your blog! I'm afraid I don't agree with you, although I respect your views. I think there is still so much to be worried about here and there's too much comparison with what people are saying about other countries. In the end, who cares? It may not be fair that international voices are paying more attention to Sri Lanka but that does not make the faults that they point out any less serious. We may be without war, but we still have a long way to go to be without conflict. Cheers :)