Editorial

A domestic affair

Summary

Gotabaya Rajapaksa has said his piece. Done. Now let’s try to look after our affairs. And the only way would be WITH THE PEOPLE and not ‘with SOME people.’ A domestic affair, then. A very Sri Lankan, domestic affair. How about that?

President Gotabaya Rajapaksa in a pre-recorded statement at the ‘High-Level Meeting to Commemorate the 75th Anniversary of the United States,’ articulated  the obvious or rather the well-known but largely ignored: ‘partnerships between member states and the UN are best when no country is held hostage to the interests of a few.’

Sri Lanka is not in a position to demand and extract, but uttering the unuttered or the ought-to-be uttered is not a bad thing. Kudos to the Prez for putting things in ‘plain english’ when he described ‘The United Nations We Need’ — ‘where there is due emphasis on the sovereign equality of states, respect for territorial integrity and non-interference in their domestic affairs.’

Doesn’t happen that way. Never did and it might take a while for us to get to a point where such things are affirmed at all times, all levels and in all matters.

Interference is the name of the game. Sovereignty is a nice word and frequently saluted but as frequently brushed aside. Even when there’s no direct invasion, the play of capital has rendered meaningless the notion of territorial integrity.

Guns in. Booty out. It’s as simple as that.

And therefore countries like Sri Lanka are forced to walk as though on egg-shells. Doesn’t mean we are impotent. We too can play one thug against the other.  

More crucially, though, we can take care of things that are within our control. There’s no way we can maneuver effectively, internationally, if our ‘local’ is not solid. And ‘local’ as far as the President and Government are concerned boils down to a few key matters: a) trusting the people and winning their confidence, b) let locals decide what their interests are (instead of global thugs and their local lackeys presuming to speak for ‘The People’ [by calling themselves ‘civil society’ for example — no one elected them and hardly anyone even know they exist!]), c) tear templates offered on a string or marked ‘free’ and ‘this is great, trust us’; design your own.

Stuff like that.

Gotabaya Rajapaksa has said his piece. Done. Now let’s try to look after our affairs. And the only way would be WITH THE PEOPLE and not ‘with SOME people.’ A domestic affair, then. A very Sri Lankan, domestic affair. How about that?

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