Posted by: kankuna | ජනවාරි 27, 2010

Life Support Needed!

(Kankuna switched to English simply because he did not have access to Sinhala fonts. I apologise.)

Although Kankuna maintains a healthy interest in politics, in this particular election he was not vocal in support to either candidate. That was because he believed that both of them were patriots, driven apart by the opportunistic and scheming elements surrounding them. Because he believed both of them to be strong individuals, having the ability to suppress the influences of the ‘supporters’ with ulterior motives. Because he believed that both of them had the best interests of the country in their minds (of course in addition to the personal interests) and the disagreement to be merely in the modus operandi.

So, although Kankuna DID have his personal preference, he did not lose any sleep over the issue of the winning candidate. As long as a patriot is in the office, it did not really matter to Kankuna from which party he came from. There is no law that all patriots, or ‘hero’s, have to share the same view point.

Well, he was quite unkindly dragged out of his utopia.

It was not because there were unsubstantiated, mud slinging claims from both sides. (Unacceptable as they were, considering the personal stakes in the fight it was inevitable). It was not because there was no independence in the media. (After all, who can be independent?) It was not because some of the most despicable people in Sri Lankan political arena were in the front seats of the gravy trains on both sides. (It is not unknown to use bad people to achieve good ends.) It was not because there was obvious abuse of state property and powers. (All the ruling parties have done that, with the possible exception of DBW, but it has not really stopped governments from toppling.)

It was because one candidate requested international intervention.

As a nation we have had our own share of ‘international interventions’ ranging from Sena & Guththika through Don Juan Dharmapala to the SLMM, and we should know enough history to be sceptical about them. The biggest mistake a country can make is to assume that another country will offer its help without an ulterior motive. I do not imply that you can survive all by yourself in this world. But, a clear idea on what the other party expects is mandatory, and if it is a win-win situation, any help is welcome by all means. But this is precisely what is lacking with the nations that are so eager to intervene, and makes me jittery. (Kankuna would like to suggest ‘Confessions of an Economic Hit Man’ by John Perkins for further reading.) Of course they will happily intervene – haven’t they really tried to do that since late 2008? The question is, at what cost to the country?

Kankuna believes the leader of his country has to be strong enough to fight for himself as well as his country. If somebody else is being called to substitute, you need not look further to find a person not fit to run my country.

Ladies and gentlemen, a hero is dead.

Kankuna, being the pessimist he is, thinks what the choreographers in the world politics have in mind for Sri Lanka is an act similar to Iran. Where protracted demonstrations, rallies and strikes are carried out schematically. (Kankuna can think of at least one Sri Lankan political party that would gladly embrace this approach) Where the country’s elected leaders are not given breathing space to address any of the actual problems of the country, because naturally the first concern would be day to day survival. Where the best opportunity the country has had in about five centuries, is wasted, and it ends up being weaker than ever. (My previous post named ‘giya hakura saha pooja karanna hadhana hakura’ also deals with this)

He sincerely wishes that these be paranoid delusions.

As a country, having fulfilled the obligations of the voter, we do not have the luxury to sit back and relax, because as somebody said, every country ends up with the government it deserves. The victor will need to realise that it takes more than brute force to overcome this turmoil, and the public will need to learn not to be clay in somebody else’s hands. But, at any cost, let us keep the international ‘philanthropic’ interveners out of this. Else, we may find the remaining hero suffering an agonising death following a protracted malady.

Ladies and Gentlemen, let’s get together and keep that hero alive.



  1. This is very interesting and I really liked the way Kankuna has put this together. However, once I have read the article couple of thoughts immediately came to my mind.

    Kankuna seems to be very forgiving for sins (let’s just call them sins) such as abuse of state media and property, personal mud slugging, violence initiated by politics (even though Kankuna hasn’t mentioned this, i thought I put one more point for my argument), and using shameless and currupt politicians in political arena. So, for me it seems like Kankuna is driven by the thought “No matter what damage is done to my country as long as they are done by one of our own”. OR, I’ll step back and come again.. “When someone has done some great things to his country, it’s OK to abuse the power a bit he has gained”.

    Kankuna doesn’t name the candidate who requested international intervention, well.. it’s no secret… it has to be the one who was not in power at the time. One thing I have observed in Sri Lankan political scene is that people do whatever they can to obtain the power, and true qualities of that person comes out when they are in power. Even the current president in power has done the same when he was in opposition, he went to Geneva to complain about human rights, while in presidency he went to number of countries and obtained supports for his cause. We all know Russia and China voted in favour of Sri Lanka in the Security Counsil. So, what were the motives they had when they voted for Sri Lanka? are we only worried about western intervention?

    I agree with Kankuna saying that neither of the main parties interested him more than the other. My reasoning is that I see they both are driven more by personal interests than the interest of the public or the country. It;s true they both played a major role in ending the thirty-year long bloody war. But I can see one is abusing the power he has to the maximum for his personal interests, and the other one is fighting for the power based on allegations that he was not properly treated by the one in the power. So. it;s all personal.

    but if you ask me, I say I would have voted the one fighting for power…. 12 years is a long time and most people forget what they are doing by that time.

    One of Aesop’s fables comes in to my mind…
    A pig stuck in mud covered by hundreds of leeches, and seems to be very weak by the loss of blood. Another animal (can;t remember) comes and start to remove leeches from pigs body. The pig ask to stop that and when asked he gives this reason. The leeched now on my body has taken lot of blood and they are nearly full, if you remove them, those hungry new leeches waiting will come to that space and start to suck my blood from the begining. so please leave the ones already on my body…..

    Seems like we have done the right thing.. haven’t we?

    • I quite agree with your criticism, and the fact that I have not been able to come up with an entirely impartial analysis. But, let me explain the thinking process behind the two points you have highlighted.

      1. With the possible exception of that under Hon. D.B. Wijethunga, no election I have witnessed has been free and fair. State media has always been partial towards the government, and the private media towards UNP. (when it was a UNP government there were no conflicting news reports at all!) And almost all the politicians I have known had accrued assets through politics, and I expected no better from either party. Victimization, as seen today, would have been several folds more severe if the election results were reversed. Therefore these were not deciding factors for me.

      2. Being a minion, kankuna does not know about the agreements between Russia, China and Sri Lanka, and can only guess the strategic positioning of our country and the natural resources including those in north and east must have influenced them. But as they have chosen to support the GOVERNMENT of Sri Lanka, I presume they would like the whole island under the rule of the said government. However, western powers chose to support the terrorists even at the cost of goodwill of the government, therefore I can only infer that they must have had an equation, of which GOSL did not have any part. Taken in this context, calling for ‘international intervention’ is the best way for a unitary state to commit harakiri.

      I also have thought time and again about your analogy of leeches and the pig. Unfortunately for the country, politicians, unlike leeches, have unlimited appetite. Therefore I am still reluctant to give a clean bill of health to the country, but we did not have much choice it seems.

  2. I was starting to worry that whether Kankuna was abducted by a white van or something… but logically decided that it can not be as his article didn’t contain much against the current government and started to think about the posibilities of a international secret mission to kidnap Kankuna… scary….

    however it;s good to see Kankuna back… As I observe the current events in Sri Lanka… I would like to say there are no heros… all of them have been dead for years… and the victory was an accident. It might sound very unfair to the brave soldiers who sacrificed their lives for the country. But the things president, top government officials, ministers doing thesedays… and what Sarath Fonseka did while ago… I guess there never has been a hero… the victory was a bonus while these peopls tried to fulfil thier own dreams.

    Yes I was wrong comparing leeches with politicians…. leeches have limits…

    • Sorry for the long delay in replying. In the meantime, what you have told has been proven beyond reasonable doubt.
      However, I maintain that both of them WERE heroes. However, both of them are human beings and have their own dark sides. My feeling is that both of them are being bombarded with situations nicely constructed to bring out the worst in them. And this is being done by people who know what they are doing.
      It is very interesting to watch the international arena and observe the attitudes and comments regarding Sri Lanka these days.

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