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Asian Tribune is published by World Institute For Asian Studies|Powered by WIAS Vol. 12 No. 2858

Monthly archive

Fidel Castro

The Stalemate

By Tisaranee Gunasekara

The problems are senseless; the contradictions are irreconcilable; both are mounting. And they stem from the very nature of the ‘Mahinda Chinthanaya’. ‘Mahinda Chinthanaya’ commits the President to a unitary state; a political solution to the ethnic problem which exceeds the unitary structure is a sine qua non to win the backing of the minorities and the international community. ‘Mahinda Chinthanaya’ commits the President to socio-economic programmes aimed at improving the living conditions of ordinary people; these cannot be implemented while maintaining defence expenditure, corruption and waste at their current exorbitant levels, in a situation of dwindling foreign aid and investment. Survival requires some fundamental changes; the political foresight and the political will necessary for such changes are conspicuous by their absence.

What happens in the aftermath of an LTTE military defeat?

By Geoffrey Evarts

The word from the Wanni does not spell good for Velupillai Prabhakaran. Reports indicate that the LTTE’s supply of arms have diminished to a trickle for various reasons, chief among them being the Navy’s recent successes in apprehending several Tiger arms shipments. The recent capitulation of the East has also denied the Sea Tigers several important Naval bases and Sea Tiger staging points. India has also extended limited help by enforced patrolling of Tamil Naadu’s coast and denying the LTTE (to a significant extent) use of Tamil Naadu. These factors have resulted in severely affecting the Tigers ability to wage conventional warfare, as conventional military action requires vast stocks of arms and ammunition being constantly re-supplied.

Response to Glimpses from the Mahavamsa

By Sumanadasa Wijayapala

In my first response to Dr. Mithra Fernando, I acknowledged that the early parts of the Mahavamsa do not have corroborating evidence from other sources, compared to the later sections (from King Devanampiya-Tissa), and thus I do not automatically accept the early sections as established history. I personally believe that the story of Vijaya is a myth and that Gotama Buddha had probably never visited the isle of Lanka. After all, the Suttas and the Vinaya do not mention any episode where the Buddha had ventured outside the domain of old Magadha, and likewise there is no evidence that Buddhism had spread beyond the Magadha region until the time of Emperor Asoka. Indeed, Asoka is revered in the Pali chronicles as the sovereign who sponsored the spread of the Dhamma to all parts of the Indian Subcontinent; the credit for introducing Buddhism to the island properly belongs to Mahinda and Sanghamitta, not to the Buddha himself.

Is Castro alive? Cuba says yes, Miami gossip no

By Laura Wides-Munoz

Fidel CastroThe official word in Cuba is that Fidel Castro is still very much alive -- but you'd never know that on the streets of Miami. Premature rumors of Castro's death are a staple in this heavily Cuban-exile city. But their frequency has intensified in recent days after his 81st birthday came and went Aug. 13 with neither pictures, letters nor recordings from him. Friday, the rumors were pushed into overdrive by a meeting of local officials to go over their plans for when Castro really dies and a road closure in the Florida Keys that was actually due to a police standoff.

Women Leadership in India, Pakistan and Bangladesh - Part-VII

By Rabindranath Trivedi - for Asian Tribune from Dhaka

Women Leadership in Bangladesh : In election of 1991, ‘BNP obtained the single majority with 140 seats, and was unable to form government except with support of the Jamaat-e-Islami Bangladesh of Prof. Ghulam Azam,which had been banned under 1972 Constitution but revived by her husband General Ziaur Rahman who made sacrilegious interpolitions in the Constitution.’ Ratan Sen, a member of the Central Committee of the Commmunist Party of Bangladesh and president of Khulna District Committee. Communist Party of Bangladesh, who spent twenty-two years in jail and was murdered in broad day light near the court house of Khulna on 31 July ’92. Rashed Khan Menon, MP shot and critically wounded by two bullets which pierced his rib on the evening of 17 August’92 as he came out of the party office in the city.

North-east in transition

By Vinod Vedi - Syndicate Features

It is a season of mixed results in the north-east. The ceasefire between Delhi and the Isac Swu-Muivah faction of the National Socialist Council of Nagalim (NSCN-IM) has been extended indefinitely with the proviso from the Naga side that if there is no progress in the talks between the two delegations the ceasefire would be revoked immediately. The consequence could be a renewed flare-up of violence in Nagaland. A connected development was the rejection of any ceasefire by the rival faction of the NSCN led by the Khaplang group which has pockets of control on both sides of the India-Myanmar border.

U.S. Denounces Arrest of Pro-Democracy Activists in Burma

Daya Gamage - US Bureau Asian ribune

The Government of the United States of America issued the following statement condemning the arrests of Burmese dissidents. "We condemn the Burmese regime's arrest of Min Ko Naing, Ko Ko Gyi, and several other pro-democracy activists on August 22 for organizing peaceful demonstrations to express public concern about recent increases in the price of fuel.

Solomon Islands government defeats no-confidence motion

On August 17, the speaker of the Solomon Islands’ parliament, Peter Kenilorea, ruled that an attempted no-confidence motion brought by the opposition against the government of Prime Minister Manasseh Sogavare was inadmissible under parliamentary standing orders. The decision represents a significant blow to the Australian government-driven campaign to bring down the Solomons government, since it appears to have prevented another no-confidence vote until the next parliamentary session in 2008. Canberra targetted the Sogavare government for removal soon after it came to power in May last year. The Howard government had dispatched more than 1,000 soldiers and police to the Solomon Islands in 2003, along with scores of bureaucrats, legal personnel, and other officials.

Recruitment of women workers to Middle East - India imposes new restrictions

By Walter Jayawardhana

In the backdrop of serious abuses by employers as well as by the police forces especially in Saudi Arabia India said it would impose tighter regulations that would govern household workers starting from September 1. Under these new restrictions India said 18 countries including Saudi Arabia and other oil rich Middle Eastern countries will be under mandatory obligations to pay USD 400 monthly salary and a security deposit of USD 2,500 in the form of a bank guarantee with the Indian mission.