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Asian Tribune is published by World Institute For Asian Studies|Powered by WIAS Vol. 12 No. 2344

Monthly archive

Dr. S. Thavarajah

Sri Lanka’s Predicament: Ethno-Nationalism versus Civic-Nationalism

Professor Laksiri Fernando, University of Colombo

The failure of Sri Lanka to forge national unity which is the main reason for the long drawn out war since 1983 can mainly be attributed to the nature of nationalism on both sides of the fence. Instead of civic nationalism which is sane and rational and looks beyond one’s own ethnicity or religion, Sri Lanka has been immersed in ethno nationalism which is quite the opposite. Terrorism is not an isolated problem but part and parcel of ethno nationalism. Nationalism has been the main guiding ideology of many of the countries in the world in modern times whether we like it or not. If nationalism could be replaced by liberalism or socialism, or by a combination of both, the world would be a better place to live.

A response to Prof. Nalin De Silva and Mr. Udaya Gamanpila by Dr. S. Thavarajah on behalf of EPDP at the APRC

Dr. S. ThavarajahMr. Chairman, I do not want to probe much into the periods the militancy had taken control of the situation. It is my pertinent opinion that the numerically majority Sinhala polity in our country failed to understand and accommodate the feelings of the numerically minority communities who had aspired to live with equal rights as those of every other citizen of the country. Constitutional changes, legislative enactments and administrative directives that were detrimental to the numerically minority communities were made by exercising the power of the majoritarian rule. This has alienated the Tamils from the mainstream politics of the country and forced them to look for alternative political arrangement to secure their rights. The political demand of the Tamils today is the resultant of what had evolved out of reaction to events.

German and Swiss Buddhist thankful for the apology of Dr. Marianne Wachs

In a letter sent to the "Asian Tribune" the German and Swiss Buddhist have expressed their thanks to Dr. Marianne Wachs who initiated the controversy in the "Asian Tribune" by alleging that Ven. Nyanatiloka Maha Thera, a leading Buddhist scholar from Germany, was anti-Semitic. We, as members and representatives of various Theravada groups and organizations in Germany and Switzerland, were very perplexed about the unfortunate allegations made against the late Ven. Nyanatiloka Mahathera in the "Asian Tribune," occasioned 2 weeks ago by a letter written by Dr. Marianne Wachs. We are very glad that Marianne Wachs has withdrawn her allegations, realizing that she has been misled by wrong information.

CCC and Riyadh Commerce and Industry Chamber signs trade agreement

By Quintus Perera –Asian Tribune

The Ceylon Chamber of Commerce (CCC) which just concluded its second successful Sri Lanka Economic Summit, made use of this opportunity to enter into a co-operation agreement with the Riyadh Chamber of Commerce and Industry (RCCI). Hussein A Al-Athel, Secretary General, RCCI was among many overseas participants who attended the 2007 Sri Lanka Economic Summit organized by the CCC, was the only overseas Chamber representative to attend this Important event. The CCC's network extends from Regional Chambers to Overseas Chambers and this was the 62nd MOU to be signed with an overseas Chamber.

India: Dirty politics go on

Oken Jeet Sandham

Oft-repeated Johnson's definition that politics is the last resort of the scoundrel holds good even today. This is true to everywhere in the world. Even the one who never won in electoral politics in his lifetime can even confidently thunder that he, in the house of sixty or so, will be forming the next Government. Even some political leaders started deriding the ruling UPA’s nominee for the country’s Presidential race, Pratibha Patil, as a “big joke,” saying her candidature for the highest seat of the country cannot compare to that incumbent President APJ Abdul Kalam’s stature.

Share market slides to negative territory

By Quintus Perera – Asian Tribune

HNB Stockbrokers indicted in their Weekly review that the Market slided amid low retail participation and after a brief stint of positive momentum the indices once again slipped into negative territory with Friday alone All Share Price Index (ASPI) and Milanka Price Index (MPI) dropping by 23 points and 34 points respectively. Overall during this week the ASPI shed 14 points to close at 2589 points while the more sensitive MPI dropped by 23 points to close at 3625 points.

The Cyprus Issue: What Is the Next Step?

By Abdul Jaleel Al Marhoon

During two visits I made last year to Northern Cyprus, I was destined to stand over some "neutral lands" as well as those divided by ramparts in both Famagusta and Nicosia. To tell the truth it is a very disheartening sight, because the lay individual on both sides is the one, who is paying the price for this unnatural situation, which has been going on for so long. The Cypriot authorities on both of the Greek and Turkish sides have agreed in the year 2003 to decrease the restrains on visitations between the two halves of the island and to establish five crossing points on the green line, but the conundrum remains.

Pakistan looks to America for Manna

By Wajid Shamsul Hasan - Syndicate Features

Growing interest of USA in the return of democracy to Pakistan is seen in the increasing frequency of visits to Islamabad by its high officials. The 5-day tour by US Assistant Secretary of State Richard Boucher, joined by Deputy Secretary of State John D. Negroponte, followed by current Centcom General trailed by former General Abizaid-- had a lot more to do than meets the eye. It signals that the American interests in Pakistan are larger than one man. This view is largely shared by most American think tanks and experts like Lisa Curtis of Heritage Foundation, a leading conservative think-tank in Washington, which has been a strong supporter of Gen Musharraf and his role in the “war on terrorism.”

Bhairon Singh Shekhawat

BJP veteran Bhaironsingh Shekhawat enters the Indian Presidenship race, pits directly against Pratibha Patil of the Congress

Bhairon Singh ShekhawatDespite the odds staring at him, Vice President and Veteran BJP leader Bhairon Singh Shekhawat entered the race for Raisina Hills as an Independent on Monday in what is seen as a direct fight between two Shekhawats since the Third Front balloon has burst even before it launch. BJP managers frankly admit that the numbers are not in their favour. And hence they issued a call for conscience vote to all MPs and MLAs and their campaign is on a virulently anti-Congress platform. “We have deliberately opted for June 25 to file the nomination”, they said recalling that the internal emergency was clamped on this day 32 years back.


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