Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Sri Lanka - after the LTTE

The 26 year war with the LTTE is finally over, after government forces stormed the last strip of land that the LTTE was holding.

With this, Sri Lanka is now back at the square one before the LTTE came into play. It is imperative that this does not turn into another vicious cycle where another LTTE sort of group comes into power and armed conflict rages again.

The ball is now in the Sinhalese court. They have the stop the discrimination against the minority Tamils that started the whole saga half a century back, and the first and easiest way would be ending instituitionalised discrimination - imposing meritocracy would be the best method forward.

If anything, President Mahinda would have to lead the way, and this certainly means a great change from his normally hardline stance.

Hopefully, he can pull it off well. Sri Lankans of all races have suffered tremendously from this unecessary war, and nobody wants it to happen again.

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Sri Lanka & the LTTE

Now the Tigers have been pushed back onto a small strip of land. No matter all their advanced weaponry and asymmetric tactics, these are generally useless once an enemy is sufficiently pissed off and determined enough to fight.

It is impossible to get your way all the time, and unfortunately Prabkharan & the LTTE leadership failed to realise that. They could have probably gotten an autonomous state if they had negotiated and /or played the media like nationalist anti-colonialist groups did in the 60s, but of course now all such debate is academic.

Neither is the Sri Lankan government playing their cards that well. They should have allowed the UN into the theatre to provide aid - this would enhance their international legitimacy as well as allow stories of atrocities of the Tigers to find their way into international media, which would disgrace the Tigers & at least disillusion some of their international supporters.

Hopefully, this unnecessary conflict can end soon.

Friday, May 1, 2009

Swine flu

Maybe the Jews and Muslims were right about pigs being unclean. Pigs have been long known as places where viruses can intermingle and 'blend' to produce new mutant strains - and maybe God and Muhammad knew something that we didn't.

Clearly, our farming methods have to improve. Keeping large numbers of living organisms together in overcrowded conditions is ideal for disease transmission; that has happened in just about every pandemic from the Black Death to the Hong Kong flu.

Overpopulation might just well be the other problem.