அரசியல் பிரச்சாரத்தின் ஆதாரக் கோட்பாடு

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அரசியல் பிரச்சாரத்தின் ஆதாரக் கோட்பாடு.

'' நீதி, மதம், அரசியல், சமுதாயம் சம்பந்தமான எல்லாவித சொல்லடுக்குகளுக்கும் பிரகடனங்களுக்கும் வாக்குறுதிகளுக்கும் பின்னே ஏதாவதொரு வர்க்கத்தின் நலன்கள் ஒழிந்து நிற்பதைக் கண்டுகொள்ள மக்கள் தெரிந்துகொள்ளாத வரையில் அரசியலில் அவர்கள் முட்டாள்தனமான ஏமாளிகளாகவும் தம்மைத் தாமே ஏமாற்றிக்கொள்வோராகவும் இருந்தனர், எப்போதும் இருப்பார்கள். பழைய ஏற்பாடு ஒவ்வொன்றும் எவ்வளவுதான் காட்டு மிராண்டித் தனமாகவும் அழுகிப் போனதாகவும் தோன்றிய போதிலும் ஏதாவது ஒரு ஆளும்வர்க்கத்தின் சக்தியைக் கொண்டு அது நிலைநிறுத்தப்பட்டு வருகிறது. சீர்திருத்தங்கள், அபிவிருத்திகள் ஆகியவற்றின் ஆதரவாளர்கள் இதை உணராத வரையில் பழைய அமைப்பு முறையின் பாதுகாவலர்கள் அவர்களை என்றென்றும் முட்டாளாக்கிக் கொண்டே இருப்பார்கள். இந்த வர்க்கங்களின் எதிர்ப்பைத் தகர்த்து ஒழிப்பதற்கு ஒரே ஒரு வழிதான் உண்டு. அது என்ன?

பழைமையைத் துடைத்தெறியவும் புதுமையைச் சிருக்ஷ்டிக்கவும் திறன் பெற்றவையும், சமுதாயத்தில் தாங்கள் வகிக்கும் ஸ்தானத்தின் காரணமாக அப்படிச் சிருக்ஷ்டித்துக் தீரவேண்டிய நிர்ப்பந்தத்திலிருக்கிறவையுமான சக்திகளை, நம்மைச் சூழ்ந்துள்ள இதே சமுதாயத்துக்குள்ளேயே நாம் கண்டுபிடித்து, அந்தச் சக்திகளுக்கு ஞானமூட்டிப் போராட்டத்துக்கு ஸ்தாபன ரீதியாகத் திரட்ட வேண்டும். இது ஒன்றேதான் வழி. ''

மாமேதை தோழர் லெனின்
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Monday, 27 February 2017

சாந்தன் அண்ணா: முள்ளிவாய்க்கால் வாக்குமூலம்

 
 
 

சென்று வா சாந்தா!

 
சாந்தன்:ஈழதேச யுத்த பேரிகை
 
ஈழதேச விடியலின் முரசம் தன் நேசத்துக்குரிய மக்களின் தோள்களில் சந்தனப்பேழையில் இறுதியாத்திரையை தொடங்கிவிட்டார்.
 
கம்பீரக் குரலில் மாவீரர் சு. ப . தமிழ்ச்செல்வனை வழியனுப்பி வைத்த "நித்தியப் புன்னகை அரசன் இன்று நீள் துயில் கொள்ளுகின்றான்" பாடல் வரிகள் துயரக்கதறலாய் ஒலிக்க நடமாடித் திரிந்த தெருக்களை, மேடை மீது ஆரோகணித்து , ஒலிவாங்கியை அரவணைத்து , "இந்த மண் எங்களின் சொந்த மண் " என்று முழங்கிய போர்ப்பேரிகைக்கும் அவன் நேசித்த மண்ணுக்குமான கடைசி நாழிகைகள்.
 
இந்திய கம்யூனிஸ்டுக் கட்சியின் தமிழ் முரசமான தோழர். ஜீவா அவர்கள் காலமானபோது தோழர்கள் அந்நிகழ்வைக் "காற்றில் கலந்த பேரோசை" என சிலாகித்தனர்.
 
"புதைந்த குழியில். இருந்து நீங்கள் எழுந்து வாருங்கள்" எனக் கோரிக்கை வைத்து "எதிரிகளின் பாசறையை தேடிப் போகவைத்த" அந்த வீரமகன் இன்று நோய்தின்ற உடல்நீங்கி
 காற்றாய், கடும் மழையாய், எம் நிலத்தின் சுடுவெயிலாய் எம் மனங்களில் நிறைந்து நிற்பான்.
 
தமிழ்த்தேசம் விடுதலைப் போர்க்கொடி உயர்த்திய நாட்களில் மக்களோடு மக்களாக கோவில் திருவிழாக்களில் அவன் குரல் ஒலித்துக்கொண்டிருந்தது.
 
ஈழதேச விடியலுக்காக துறைசார் நிபுணர்கள் சங்கீத விற்பண்ணர்கள் குரல்கள் ஒலிக்கத் தொடங்கிய தொண்ணூறுகளின் தொடக்கத்தில்"நெய்தல்" ஒலிப்பேழை வெளியானது.
 
விடுதலைப்புலிகள் கலை பண்பாட்டுக்கழகத்தின் இப்பணிக்கு முகவுரை, தொகுப்புரையாக இன்றுவரை சர்வதேச நியமங்களுக்கு கட்டுப்பட்டு இலங்கை அரசு தகவல் கூடத் தரமறுக்கும்
 விடுதலைப்புலிகளின் தலைவர்களிலொருவரான  யோகி அண்ணாவின் குரல் ஒலித்தது.
 
"பாரதம் வென்ற புலிப்படையின் படகுகள் சென்றிடும் கடலிதுதான்" என்று மாவீர்ர் பாடிய
 அதே தொகுப்பிலேயே "வெள்ளி நிலா விளக்கேற்றும் நேரம்" என்ற மீனவர் வாழ்வும் குறிக்கப்பட்டது.
தேசிய சுதந்திர அரசு அமைக்கப்பட்டாலொழிய "அப்பன் வலைவீசி வீசி அள்ளிவந்த செல்வமெல்லாம் அந்தியரின் காலில் சென்று வீழ்தல்" தவிர்க்க முடியாத து என்ற உண்மையை அந்த பாடல். உரக்க ஒலித்தது.
 
தமிழீழ தேசிய கவி புதுவை இரத்தினதுரை, மாமனிதர் திரு.நாவண்ணன் ஆகியோரது கவிக்கனலை அகிலமெங்கும் இந்த ஈழதேச யுத்த பேரிகை காவிச்சென்றது.
 
"குயிலி நீயெம் விடுதலை பாடு" எனக் கேட்டுக்கொண்ட அந்த கணீர்க்குரல் முள்ளிவாய்க்கால் இறுதி நாட்களிலும் சரண டைதலை நிராகரித்து வீர உரைகளையும் ஆற்றியது.

நாடக கலையிலும் பெரிதும் பரிமளித்த மாளாக்கலைஞனின் குரல் ஈழத்தின் முதுகலை வடிவமான கூத்து மேடைகளிலும் கொடி நாட்டிப் பறந்தது.
 
முள்ளிவாய்க்கால் களத்தில் இவரின் மூத்த புதல்வனும் களமாடி வீரச்சாவடைந்தார்.
 
விடுதலைப்புலிகளின் சகாப்தம் முடிந்த பின்னால் முள்வேலிகளின் உள்ளிருந்து வெளிவந்து கோவில் திருவிழாக்களின் பாடகரானார்.
 
கொக்கட்டிச்சோலை தான்தோன்றி ஈஸ்வரன் பற்றிய இவரது பாடல் மிகவும் கொண்டாடப்பட்டதாகும்...
 
எம்மை நினைத்து யாரும் கலங்கக்கூடாது என்று பாடிய அற்புதக்குரலோன்....,
ஈழதேசம் தனது அடிமை நுகத்தடியை உடைக்கும்வரையும் உன் குரல் மக்களின் ஊக்க கானங்கள்...
 
புதிய ஈழதேசத்தில் அவை பள்ளிமாணவரின் இனிய சங்கீதங்கள்....
 
உன் குரலுக்கு இறுதி கௌரவம்;

உன் பாடல்களை எம் இல்லங்கள் தோறும் சிங்களத் தகனக்கிரியை வரை  ஒலிக்க வைப்பதுதான்....
 
சென்று வா....என் அடிமைத்தேசத்தின் யுத்தபேரிகையே...
காற்றில். கலந்த காவியமே....
குரலால், உணர்வால் , வாழ்வால்
எம் மண்துகளில் கலந்துவிட்ட வைடூர்யமே...
சென்றுவா......
 
நன்றி: அ.குமார்  Face Book
 
 
                     "எஸ்.ஜி.சாந்தன்" 🙏

"செந்தூருக்க கோலம் வானத்துல பாரு
வந்து இந்த நேரம் போட்டு வச்சதாரு" 

உரும்பிராய்ப் பக்கமிருக்கும் வானத்தை நோக்கித் தன் விரலால் காட்டி விட்டுக் கூடப் பாடும் சேவியர் நவனீதனைக் காதலோடு பார்த்துப் பாடுகிறது அந்தக் குரல் 

"சேரும் இள நெஞ்சங்களை 
வாழ்த்துச் சொல்லக் கோர்த்தார்களா 
ஊருக்குக்குள்ள சொல்லாததை 
வெளியில் சொல்லித் தந்தார்களா?"

கோண்டாவில் உப்புமடப் பிள்ளையார் கோயில் முன்றலில் கே.கே.எஸ். றோட்டை மறித்துப் போடப்பட்ட தற்காலிக திடலில் மக்கள் திரண்டிருக்க, கோயிலின் வெளிப்புற மதிலை ஒட்டிய பக்கம் போடப்பட்ட மேடையில் இருந்து ஒலிக்கிறது அந்த கணீர்க் குரல். ஜிப்பாவும், வேட்டியும் கட்டி, முறுக்கேறிய அந்த அழகிய உருவத் தோற்றமே தென்னிந்திய சினிமா நட்சத்திரமொன்று எங்கள் முன்னால் நிற்பது போல ஒரு பிரமை. குரலுக்குச் சொந்தக் காரர் வேறு யாருமல்ல, அந்த எவரைப் பற்றிய அந்தப் பசுமையான நினைவுகளை எழுதும் போது மயிர்க்கால்கள் குத்திட்டு மெய் சிலிர்க்கின்றனவே அவர் தான் எஸ்.ஜி.சாந்தன்.

1991 ஆம் ஆண்டென்று நினைக்கிறேன் அதுதான் சரியாகப் பொருந்திப் போகிறது. எங்கள் அயலூர் 
கோண்டாவில் உப்புமடப் பிள்ளையார் கோயிலின் 
இரவுத் திருவிழாவுக்கு அருணா கோஷ்டி வருகிறது என்ற செய்தி வந்தவுடன், என் சகோதரனும் நண்பனுமான சுதாவோடு சைக்கிள் போட்டுக் கோயிலுக்குப் போகிறோம். நாச்சிமார் கோயிலடி ஐயரின் ஶ்ரீதேவி வில்லிசைக் குழு நடந்து கொண்டிருக்கிறது. அது முடிந்த போது  சாமப் போர்வையில் நட்சத்திரப் பதக்கங்கள் மின்னிக் கொண்டிருந்தது.
அடுத்தது அருணா இசை குழு தான் என்ற உற்சாகத்தில் சனம் தம்மை ஆசுவாசப்படுத்துகிறது. ஒரு மணி நேரம், இரண்டு மணி நேரம் என்று நேரம் கடந்தாலும் கூட்டம் அசையவில்லை. அப்போது தான் ஒரு மொறிஸ் மைனர் கார் வந்து நிற்க, பின்னால் ஒரு வானும் சேர்ந்து கொள்கிறது. கூட்டத்தின் ஒரு பகுதி எட்டிப் போய் அந்தக் காரையும் வானையும் மொய்த்து விட்டு வந்து கடலைச் சரை போட்டுக் குறி வைத்த தம் இடத்தில் வந்து உட்கார்ந்து கொள்கிறது. 
"அளவெட்டியில இருந்து கச்சேரி முடிச்சு வருகினமாம், தொடர்ச்சியா மூண்டு கச்சேரி பார்வதி சிவபாதத்துக்குத் தொண்டை கட்டிப் போச்சாம் பெண் பாடகிக்கு என்ன செய்யப் போகினமோ" என்று உச்சுக் கொட்டியது வேவு பார்த்து விட்டு வந்த சனம்.
அருணா இசைக்குழு கடகடவென்று தம் வாத்தியங்களை மேடையில் பரப்ப, பத்துப் பதினைந்து நிமிடங்களுக்கெல்லாம் பாட்டுக் கச்சேரி தொடங்கி விட்டது.
"தேவன் கோயில் மணியோசை நல்ல சேதிகள் சொல்லும் மணியோசை" என்று தன் ஒலிவாங்கியை இரு கைகளால் பவ்யமாகக் கோத்துக் கொண்டு ஆராதித்துப் பாடும் அந்தக் கலைஞன் எஸ்.ஜி.சாந்தன் என்று என்று எனக்கு முதன் முதலில் அறிமுகமாகிறார். 

அந்த நிகழ்ச்சியைத் தொகுத்தவர் லோகேஷ்,  ஒரு காலத்தில் றேடியோ சிலோனில் இருந்தவர் பின்னாளில் ஐரோப்பாவுக்குப் புலம் பெயர்ந்து அங்கும் வானொலிப் பணி செய்தவர். அவர் தன் கம்பீரக் குரலால் அறிமுகப்படுத்திய போது எம் போன்ற அடுத்த தலைமுறை இளையவர்களிடம் எஸ்.ஜி.சாந்தன் பதியம் போட்டு உட்கார்ந்து விட்டார். இவர் தான் தொடந்து எம் வாழ்நாளில் மறக்க முடியாத பாடகராக அமையப் போகிறார் என்பதும் அப்போது எமக்குத் தெரிந்திருக்காது.
பார்வதி சிவபாதம் இல்லாத தனிக் கச்சேரியா என்ற எங்கள் அவ நம்பிக்கையைத் தகர்த்துப் போட்டது "ராசாத்தி மனசுலே இந்த ராசாவின் நெனப்புத்தான்" சேவியர் நவநீதன் பெண் குரலெடுத்துக் கச்சிதமாகப் பாட, "தேவன் கோயில் மணியோசை" பாடலில் சீர்காழியாக உருகி நின்றவர் "ராசாத்தி மனசுல" பாடலில் மனோவாக காதல் ரசம் கொட்டிப் பாடுகிறார் இந்த எஸ்.ஜி.சாந்தன். இன்னும் "கேளடி கண்மணி காதலன் சங்கதி" என்று எஸ்.பி.பாலசுப்ரமணியமாகக் குரல் தணித்து இன்னொரு வேடம் பூணுகிறார் எங்கள் சாந்தன். 
தன்னுடைய குரலை வெவ்வேறு பரிமாணங்களாக வெளிப்படுத்தி, பாடும் போது தென்னிந்தியப் பாடகர் எஸ்.பி.பி போன்று மக்களோடு மக்களாய்க் குதூகலித்துப் பாடும் வித்தை கற்ற நட்சத்திரப் பாடகர் எஸ்.ஜி.சாந்தன் ஊர் ஊராய் மக்கள் மனதில் ஊன்றியது இப்படித்தான். அப்போது பள்ளிக்கால விடலைகளாய் இருந்த எங்கள் காலத்துக்கு முற்பட்ட பால்ய காலத்து கண்ணன் கோஷ்டி மெல்லிசை மேடைகளிலும் எஸ்.ஜி.சாந்தனின் பங்களிப்பு இருந்தது பின்னாளில் தெரிந்த கதை. சாந்தனுக்காக, சேவியர் நவநீதனுக்காக, சுகுமாரனுக்காக, பார்வதி சிவபாதத்துக்காக கோயில் கோயிலாகத் திரிந்து திருவிழா மேடைகளில் அவர்களைக் கண்டு பூரித்தது ஒரு பொற்காலம்.

ஈழத்துப் போர்க்கால எழுச்சிப் பாடல்கள் தமிழகத்துப் பாடகர்களால் பாடி ஒலியேறிய காலம் கடந்து ஈழத்து இசை வல்லுநர்கள் இசைவாணர் கண்ணன் முதற் கொண்டு உள்ளூர்க் கலைஞர்களின் சங்கமம் அரங்கேறிய போது எஸ்.ஜி.சாந்தனின் அடுத்த பரிமாணம் வெளிப்படுகிறது. அதுவரை சினிமாப் பாடல்களால் அடையாளப்பட்டவர் நம் தாயகக் கலைஞன் என்ற சுய அந்தஸ்த்தை நிறுவுகிறார்.
ஈழத்துப் போர்க்கால எழுச்சிப் பாடல்களில் மரபிசை சார்ந்த திரு.பொன்.சுந்தரலிங்கம், திரு.வர்ண இராமேஸ்வரன் போன்ற நட்சத்திரங்களுக்கு மத்தியில் ஒரு வெகுஜன அந்தஸ்துப் பெற்ற பாடகன் எஸ்.ஜி.சாந்தனின் வரவு தனித்துவமாக அமைகிறது. தன் குரலில் மிடுக்கையும், உணர்வையும் ஒரு சேரக் கொடுக்கும் திறன் , இயல்பாக உள்ளே பொதிந்திருக்கும் நடிப்பாற்றல் சேர்ந்த ஒரு ஜனரஞ்சகக் கலைஞராகப் போர்க்கால எழுச்சிப் பாடல்களில் வீறு கொண்டு வியாபித்த சாந்தன் குரல் பறையொலிக்கு நிகரான போர் முழக்கமாகத் தெனித்தது.

"போற்றியெம் தமிழெனும் காவியப் பொருளே" என்று சங்கீத பூஷணம் திரு பொன்.சுந்தரலிங்கம் தன் மரபிசை சார்ந்த வெளிப்பாட்டைக் குரல் வழியே வெளிப்படுத்த 
"ஆதியாய் அநாதியாய் அவதரித்த செந்தமிழ்" http://download.tamiltunes.com/songs/Eelam-Songs/Barani%20Paaduvom/Aathi%20Anithija%20-%20TamilTunes.com.mp3 
என்று தன் தாய்த் தாய்த் தமிழைப் போற்றிப் பாடும் அந்தக் குரலின் பாங்கு இன்னொரு திசையில் இருந்து கிளம்புகிறது எஸ்.ஜி.சாந்தனின் குரல் அது இன்னொரு முத்திரை இந்த இரண்டு விதமான இசைக் கூறுகளின் அடிப்படையிலேயே ஈழத்துப் போர்க்கால இசைப்பாடல்கள் தம்மை நிறுவியிருக்கின்றன.

"ஈடு வைத்து ஈடு வைத்து நந்தலாலா"  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XxcpObs6h_0&sns=tw  பாடல் ஆனையிறவுப் போர்க்களம் கடந்து பின்னாளில் சந்தித்த எல்லாக் களமுனைகளிலும் நின்றிருந்த போராளிகளின் வாயில் முணுமுணுக்க வைத்திருக்கும். அந்தக் காலத்துக் குஞ்சு குருமான்களும் சாந்தனின் குரலைப் பிரதி பண்ணிப் பாடிப் பார்த்தன.
 
"விண் வரும் மேகங்கள் பாடும் மாவீரரின் நாமங்கள் கூறும்"  https://www.youtube.com/shared?ci=rowENrcVw0k அந்த நீண்ட பாடலைக் கடப்பதற்குள் எத்தனை முறை அழுதிருப்பேன்/போம் அங்கே சாந்தன் வெளியில் நின்று வேடிக்கை பார்த்த எங்கள் குற்ற உணர்ச்சியைத் தட்டியெழுப்பியதோடு மானசீகமான அஞ்சலியையையும் கொடுக்க வைத்தார் தன் குரலில் பொதிந்த கற்பூர மெழுகால்.

ஈழத்துப் போர்க்காலப் பாடல்கள் வெறும் வீரத்தை மட்டுமா பறை சாற்றியும் தட்டியெழுப்பியும் வைத்தது? தமிழின் பெருமையை, ஈழத்து ஆலயங்களின் மகிமையையும் அல்லவா அரவணைத்தது. வடக்கிலிருந்து கிழக்கின் கோடி வரை போற்றித் துதித்தது எஸ்.ஜி.சாந்தனின் குரல்

மொழியும் கலையும் எம் இனத்தின் இரு கண்கள் என்பது போல ஈழத்துக் கூத்திசைக்கான பாடல்களில் எஸ்.ஜி.சாந்தனின் குரலும் கையாளப்பட்டது. முந்த நாள் சிவராத்தியில் புலம் பெயர்ந்த சமூகத்தைக் கொக்கட்டிச்சோலைத் தாந்தோன்றீஸ்வரர் கோயிலுக்குப் போக வைத்தது "பிட்டுக்கு மண் சுமந்த பெருமான்" https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=xjofdsqMrJo&feature=youtu.be

இன்னும் "ஆழக் கடலெங்கும் சோழ மகராசன் ஆட்சி செய்தானே அன்று"  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oLpDC1aleZ8&sns=tw என்று தலைவனைப் போற்றிய குரலாய், 
போர்க் கால மேகங்களில் மீனவர் படும் துயரின் வெளிப்பாடாய் "வெள்ளி நிலா விளக்கேற்றும் நேரம்"  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HCQ6162zvcw&sns=tw
 "இந்த மண் எங்களின் சொந்த மண்" https://www.youtube.com/shared?ci=PfN6UWRXMaI என்று உறுதியின் குரலாயும்
என யாசித்துப் போகும் அத்துணை போர்க்காலத்து உணர்வுகளின் வெளிப்பாடாய் எஸ்.ஜி.சாந்தனின் குரல் ஆவணப்படுத்தியிருக்கிறது.

இவற்றையெல்லாம் எழுதும் போது ஒரு பெருங்குற்ற உணர்வை ஈழ சமூகத்தோடு சேர்ந்து சுமக்க வேண்டியிருக்கிறது. எஸ்.ஜி.சாந்தன் நோய்ப் படுக்கையில் இருக்கிறார் என்று செய்தி வந்த போது முந்திக் கொண்டிருக்க வேண்டும் அவருக்கான மருத்துவ உதவிகளுக்குப் பணம் வேண்டும் என்ற அறை கூவல் வருவதற்கு முன்.
மீண்டும் ஒருமுறை நாம் நன்றி மறந்த சமூகமாக அடையாளப்படுத்தப்பட்டு நிற்கிறோம்.
தன்னுடலில் நோயைச் சுமந்து கொண்டு வாழ்வாதாரத்துக்காக மேடையேறிப் பாடிய இந்தக் காணொளியைக் காணும் போது https://www.facebook.com/jaffnajet/videos/832322986869310/ அந்தக் குற்ற உணர்ச்சி மிகும்.
 
இன்றும் கூட அந்தக் கலைக் குடும்பத்தை ஏந்திப் பிடிக்க நாம் முன் வர வேண்டும்.

எஸ்.ஜி.சாந்தன் குறித்த இன்றைய செய்திகள் எல்லாம் வெறும் செய்திகள் தான். 
 
எஸ்.ஜி.சாந்தன் எங்களிடமிருந்து காலாகாலமாகப் பிரிக்க முடியாத உணர்வு.


- கானா பிரபா -
26.02.17

குறிப்பு; இப்பதிவில் உள்ள சில வெளி இணைப்புகள் இயங்கு நிலையில் இல்லை வருந்துகின்றோம்

Thursday, 23 February 2017

இந்தா தமிழா உனக்கு இன்னொரு தலைவன் - கருணா

Karuna a fresh comeback into politics



Bestowing ‘Karuna’ to the tamils
By Arthur Wamanan -

Feb 18, 2017

Former Tamil Tiger renegade, ex-minister and onetime vice president of the Sri Lanka Freedom Party (SLFP), Vinayagamurthi Muralitharan alias Karuna Amman made a fresh comeback into politics on February 11 when he launched the Tamil United Freedom Front (TUFF).

Speaking to the Nation, he explained the need for a fresh political force to represent the Tamils and accused the Tamil National Alliance (TNA) of being pre-occupied with internal strife
while ignoring the welfare of the people.

Q. You have launched a new political party. What is the reason behind this move of yours?

 If you look at the situation at the moment. There is a political void created in terms of Tamil politics. The Tamil people in the North and East pinned their hopes on the TNA that they would work towards a durable solution for their problems. They thought that the TNA would work, discuss with the government and reach the solution. However, this has not happened.

First they said that a solution would be reached in 100 days. Then they said a solution would be reached within 2016. But nothing happened. The people were left to fend for themselves.

People do not know where the TNA stands. They do not say anything when the government presents any proposals. At the same time they do not oppose them also. They are not active among the people.
Therefore, I feel that the Tamils have been betrayed. They need a proper leadership. That is why I decided to step up and form the party.  This move was made after discussing with the people of the North and East, Tamils abroad and several Tamil and Sinhala leaders. My aim is to represent the people, especially the Tamil speaking people of the North and the East.
 
Q. Do you say that the TNA is losing its stand among the Tamils of this country?

 Of course yes. The ‘Eluga Tamil’ (Tamils Arise) event is a good example of this. I am supportive of the event because the demands are justifiable. However, the event was used as a platform to slander other TNA politicians. The Northern Province Chief Minister C.V. Wigneswaran levelled allegations against Opposition Leader R. Sampanthan and MP M.A. Sumanthiran. You have Wigneswaran going in one direction while Sampanthan is going in another.Even during the recent event in Batticaloa, the Chief Minister levelled allegations against Sampanthan. You do not have to bring the families of the disappeared and make them stand there while you level accusations against fellow party members. The TNA only publicized its internal rifts while ignoring the focus of that event. The truth is that the TNA is losing its way.

Q. You pointed out the various conflicting stances within the TNA. In addition, there are those who still maintain very extremist positions with regard to the national question. How are you going to bring them towards an agreeable stance?

 The whole idea of extremism, armed struggle and similar approaches will not work now. The concept of globalization has changed everything. Countries like India and China have
changed several of their policies over the years. Unfortunately there are groups who try to trigger the people by holding onto sentiments of armed struggle and war. This is unfortunate. They should understand the reality and move forward. The people should also understand this.
Look at the Muslim leaders. They are leading their people in a democratic manner. But the Tamil leaders have failed in this.

Q. You say that you want to fill the void created by the TNA. Don’t you think that your party would create more divisions among the Tamils and Tamil politics?

 I disagree with that view completely. First of all, there are rumours being spread that we are a shadow party of the former president. That is completely false.We formed the party based on our previous experiences while being part of a national political party. When you are a member of a national political party, you have to conform to its ideologies. You cannot go against its policy framework. It is difficult to speak out for Tamils while being in a national party. That is why we have moved out from the party and established a separate political outfit to represent the Tamils.

Secondly, I do not believe that our entry into the political arena would create further divisions among the Tamil political leadership. In fact, there are several politicians and academics who are fed up of the current situation and are willing to join hands with us. The Tamil United Freedom Front will be a party that would unite people.

Q. You have supported the merger of the North and the East. Do you think that the merger would solve the problem?

 The North and the East is considered the homeland of the Tamils. Even the 13th Amendment to the Constitution recognizes this. Therefore, a solution should be based on this. That should be the focus. It could be based on a federal model, or something more advanced. However, we will officially publicise our stance once we conduct our inaugural central committee meeting. We have made only one appointment to the party. We have appointed Kamalaraj as the Secretary. The rest of the party will be decided later.

We have discussed about registering our party with the Elections Commission. They have requested us to submit the relevant documents. Once that is done, we will have our central
committee meeting after which our party policy. The Policy is now being drafted. However, the policy will be in line with what I speak now.The people who were affected by the war in both provinces deserve a permanent solution.

Q. But the Muslims in the East have opposed the merger of the provinces due to the fear that their numbers would reduce further. Don’t you think the merger would strain the relationship between the two communities?

 You are right. There is a fear among the Muslim community that they would become a minority of the minorities if the provinces are merged. The fear is also there among the Sinhalese who live in the East. However, I don’t think they should be worried about this. This will not be a big issue if you look at the bigger picture.

The Muslim leaders should also understand that both provinces could be developed if they are merged. The provinces can only gain strength if the Tamils and Muslims unite. The two
communities should unite if we are to move forward. There is no question about that. The merger will be for the betterment of all Tamil-speaking people, whether they are Tamils or Muslims.

However, we should convey this message to the Sinhalese leaders in the proper manner. We should discuss this matter in the appropriate manner and try to convince them.

Q. Are you confident that you can convince them?

Of course I can. I had been involved in the armed struggle for 30 years. I have also travelled around the world for negotiations on behalf of the Tamil people. In addition, I was the Vice President of the Sri Lanka Freedom Party (SLFP). I was also in Parliament for a number of years. I have developed and maintained cordial relationships with ministers and politicians representing all the communities, as well as international political leaders. So we have to use this opportunity. I am sure that I can convince them.

Q. Are you willing to work with the TNA?

 We are open for discussions with all political parties including the TNA. As I said before, we are trying to accommodate the views that are beneficial for the people. Therefore we need
to discuss with all the parties.

Wednesday, 22 February 2017

சமரன்: கிரிமினல் மாஃபியா சசிகலா கும்பலின் பொம்மை, எடப்பாட...

சமரன்: கிரிமினல் மாஃபியா சசிகலா கும்பலின் பொம்மை, எடப்பாட...:   கிரிமினல் மாஃபியா சசிகலா கும்பலின், பொம்மை எடப்பாடி ஆட்சியை தூக்கி எறிவோம்!   * சசிகலா ஆதரவு எம்.எல்.ஏ.க்களை பதவி விலகக்கோரி முற...

Tuesday, 21 February 2017

Making the North East merger is difficult at this stage. Indian Foreign Secretary



Indian Foreign Secretary Jaishankar urges Tamil National Alliance to unite to fight for Tamils’ rights

Also he said Making the North East merger is difficult at this stage.

By P.K.Balachandran  |  Express News Service  |   Published: 20th February 2017 04:06 PM  |  
Last Updated: 20th February 2017 07:27 PM 

S. Jaishankar (Photo | EPS)

COLOMBO: Indian Foreign Secretary S. Jaishankar has urged the Tamil National Alliance (TNA) to unite to fight for the Tamils’ rights, including their rights under the proposed constitution, and cooperate with India in the economic development of the Tamil-speaking Northern and Eastern Provinces.

Meeting the TNA top brass ahead of his meetings with the Sri Lankan President Maithripala Sirisena and Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe here on Monday, Jaishankar asked the Tamil leadership about their concerns so that he could take them up with the Sri Lankan government leaders.

The TNA delegation, comprising R.Sampanthan, Mavai Senathirajah, M.A.Sumanthiran, D.Siddharthan and Selvam Adaikalanathan, pointed out that the government is dragging its feet on drafting the new constitution though all the committees have submitted their reports and even the apex Steering Committee headed by the Prime Minister has circulated a draft report.

The TNA charged that at this penultimate stage, the ruling Sirisena faction of the Sri  Lanka Freedom Party (SLFP-S) suddenly said that it wanted the Steering Committee’ draft report to be revised. And President Sirisena had gone along with them bringing the whole process to a grinding halt.

The TNA also pointed out that the Sirisena-Wickremesinghe government has not fulfilled any of the promises which it said it would fulfill in the first 100 days of office. Very little of the lands seized by the military has been handed back to its original civilian owners; no concrete steps have been taken to trace the disappeared;  political prisoners are still languishing in jails; and the Northern and Eastern Provinces are yet to be merged to form a single Tamil-speaking province as per the India-Sri Lanka Accord of 1987.

The Tamil leaders also complained that the Tamils of the North are going jobless because companies from South Sri Lanka bring labor from the South.

Responding to this, Jaishankar promised to take up these issues with the Sri Lankan leaders later in the day, but urged the TNA leaders to be united, as unity is necessary to achieve the collective aims of the Tamil people. He urged unity because factionalism has crept into the Tamil camp, both within and outside the TNA.

The TNA is divided between the C.V.Wigneswaran faction and the Sampanthan faction, with Wigneswaran floating a separate outfit – the Tamil Peoples’ Council. The Eelam Peoples’ Revolutionary Liberation Front (EPRLF) led by Suresh Premachandran is against the Ilankai Tamil Arausu Katchi (ITAK) led by R.Sampanthan and M.A.Sumnthiran. Within the ITAK itself there are radicals and moderates.
  
When agitations or demonstrations are organized, factionalism comes to the fore, damaging Tamil unity. Even the attitude to India varies depending on the faction a person belongs to. While the Sampanthan-Sumanthiran group is seen as pro-India and the Wigneswaran group is seen as being wary about the giant neighbor and depending more on the West and the West-based Diaspora.

When Suresh Premachandran raised the issue of the re-merger of the Northern and Eastern Provinces, and declared that the Tamils will not accept any constitutional set-up without a merged North and East, Jaishankar said that while it is true that the merger is part of the India-Sri Lanka Accord of 1987, much water has flowed under the bridge since then, making the merger difficult at this stage. He urged the TNA to search for points of agreement with the Sri Lankan government rather than hold an overall settlement hostage to the merger issue. From time to time history provides windows of opportunity, which, if not utilized,  could result in the Tamils not getting anything at the end.

When Premachandran asked if India could not compel the Sri Lankan government to implement the 1987 Accord, Jaishankar said that the Accord cannot be implemented unilaterally. He recalled that the LTTE had killed Rajiv Gandhi to derail the Accord. The Tamil United Liberation Front (TULF), had also lambasted the Accord. The LTTE saw to it that Mahinda Rajapaksa, an opponent of the Accord, was elected President in 2005 with results for the Tamils, too well known to be repeated.

On the issue of joblessness in the Tamil-speaking North and East, Jaishankar said that India is keen on taking up development projects there and promoting those  areas as destinations for Indian investment. He appealed to the TNA to cooperate with India in this endeavor.

When he made this request, the Indian Foreign Secretary, had, at the back of his mind, a top TNA leader’s opposition to the Indian coal fired power plant at Sampur in the Eastern Province. The Sri Lankan government had cited this leader’s objection as one of the reasons for asking New Delhi to cancel the project when it was about to be launched.

Monday, 20 February 2017

என் கணவர் தேசத் துரோகியல்ல - மாத்தையாவின் மனைவி

‘He was not a traitor’

By 2017-02-19
By Sulochana Ramiah Mohan

With the sea of information we have received through media and books about the LTTE and the 30-year-long war, the man called 'Mahaththaya' captured the attention of all as he was given a Sinhala name unlike the rest of the Tamil Tiger fighters. While top Eastern Commander like Karuna Amman had a narrow escape from death at the hands of Prabhakaran, Mahaththaya was the only top leader who was not so fortunate. He was tortured and killed by his best buddy Prabhakaran who suspected that he worked closely with the Indian Intelligence RAW. His widow Yogeshwari who lives in the North claims that Mahaththaya was a man of substance too like the 'Thalaivar' and he could have written a different story if he was alive. She says, "My husband was never a traitor because he loved his people and I am angry that he was named so and was killed at the end."

Yogeshwari did not expect Ceylon Today writer and the photographer to walk into her garden. She was after a bath and was drying her wet curly hair, standing in the sunlight. Round faced and with sparkling eyes, she has not lost her allure. She is still attractive and no doubt Mahaththaya had set his eyes on this right choice.

Standing in front of the house, she smiled as she saw the two strangers walking towards her.
When we were introduced, she was reluctant to talk to us and was camera shy too. However, she took courage to share some thoughts about her husband, who is no longer a part of her life.

Gopalaswamy Mahendraraja alias Mahaththaya was a top LTTE leader and Yogeshwari was his beloved wife. According to the book Inside an Elusive Mind by M.R. Narayan Swamy, the name Mahaththaya was given to him when a Sinhalese was abducted by the LTTE fell at his feet begging for mercy crying mahaththaya, mahaththaya.

There were smiles and moments of sorrow as she spoke of the man with whom she spent six years of her life.

"I have not entertained any press people and they were hovering around this place for many years but, here I am, speaking to you," she said.

"I had closed my mind to that chapter of my life because it is not a good story," she revealed.
Mahaththaya was born in 1956 and Yogeshwari in 1959. She is second in the family of seven children. She was staying at home after completing her G.C.E. Ordinary Level exam. At that time she used to see Mahaththaya walk past her house several times and one day their eyes met.

It was love at first sight for her because she had heard him to be a kind-hearted and a friendly man, who loved to chat with anyone who greeted him.

Messages of love

Mahaththaya, like any other young man, had been sending messages and love notes to her through his 'boys'. At the age of 17 Mahaththaya joined the movement and was a prominent fighter.
Finally, Mahaththaya walked into the house and proposed to her.

"There was no commotion about it. My parents said nothing. I suppose because his character was well known in town." Their wedding took place in Jaffna followed by a small ceremony and Prabhakaran blessed them for a 'long happy married life'.

Prabhakaran blessed Maththaiya  family  for a 'long happy married life'.
Mahaththaya looked very much like Prabhakaran and were of the same height too. Both of them used to visit her house for meals and everything was good at that time.

Yogeshwari never feared that her husband, whom she married on 3 November 1986, would die at the hand of his best buddy.

She recalled how Mahaththaya used to celebrate everyone's birthday including his.

"There was laughter in the house in Valvettithurai, Jaffna when he was there. I bore three children for him and they were his bundles of joy. He used to be at home during any break. Of course, there were a couple of times he used to stay away but he made it a point to come home."

Yogeshwari recalled the day he was asked to meet the 'Thalaivar'.

"Around 4:30 in the morning of 3 August 1993, a group of LTTE boys came and knocked on the door. He was fast asleep.

'Thalaivar wants you,' was the call from the boys who were standing in the dark. The command came from the chief, so he immediately left. He was in his sarong and shirt, and rushed to the main entrance where the jeep was waiting for him."

Yogeshwari recalled, "He looked at me and said, 'take care of the children I'll be back soon' and those were his last words."

Yogeshwari's youngest girl child was just 10 months old, when he left the house for the last time.
"I had this gut feeling that something was going to happen to him because he was never summoned to meet Prabhakaran in this manner."

"Did you hear about what happened to him before that?"

"I did not know what was going on but he used to be sulky at times. He never had the habit of telling me about LTTE activities. He never discussed anything with me and I was busy with the children."
Yogeshwari said she was not the type that complained and argued.

At the time they met, Mahaththaya was Lieutenant Colonel but later on he was the second in command. "This of course I knew."

"Mahaththaya was worried about the boys when they got injured. He used to tell me about them."
Mahaththaya had the habit of eating home cooked food and he had no qualms about food preparation. Anything that was served he used to enjoy and eat, Yogeshwari said.

Where are his remains?

After his departure, till today Yogeshwari says she has no clue what happened to him and where the remains are buried.

"I went around inquiring about my husband but the boys said 'he is not there'.

Yogeshwari pointed out that she had no one to turn to and feared to even lodge a complaint at the police at that time.

"None could go against the LTTE and lodge a complaint. I would be in trouble too and could be called a traitor. So I was quiet and remained quiet till now." (1993-2017)

Yogeshwari recalls that she read about Mahaththaya's death in a newspaper. "I came to know he was killed and not alive."

Yogeshwari tried to meet the 'Thalaivar' a number of times but it was futile. "I was not given permission to meet the man who enjoyed the company of my family and also I heard he refused to speak to me."

At that time, there were reports on Tamil media that Prabhakaran made his first call to Yogeshwari after he captured Mahaththaya.

According to the media reports, Prabhakaran had phoned Yogeshwari asking what he should do to Mahaththaya who had betrayed the LTTE and she, in her response, had said, 'Do whatever you want to do'.

Yogeshwari's search for her husband ended the day she read the news on the print media and heard it on the radio.

"I was told that my husband worked against the LTTE organization. I did not know anything about RAW they were linking him with.

"My husband mastered the warfare and knew everything and its strategic moves. But claiming he was with the RAW was news to me."

"Had he ever said that he would perish on the battlefield?

"No, we never spoke of death and our lives were based on hopes. He was hopeful."
"Did he dream of Eelam?"

"Well, that was the thought every Tamil had at that time.

"Life was not great without him. After knowing that he is believed to be dead, I came back to my maternal home with my children."

Yogeshwari's siblings who are overseas have shared her burden and educated her three children. They are employed and supporting her financially.

"From 1993 to 1997 I was unaware what had happened to my husband but I did not stop looking for him. In 1997 I heard he was tortured and killed."

Yogeshwari's eyes avoided us. She looked elsewhere and uttered these words: "Mahaththaya is no more". Despite knowing that this kind of fate was imminent in the LTTE circle, her family looked for him. "My inner feeling told me he was not alive."

A normal life

Today, Yogeshwari lives a normal life. No one speaks about her past.

About the war ending and peace prevailing in the island, Yogeshwari said she was happy too that there was no more bloodshed. "Boys died in vain at the end and my husband too."

On the LTTE being wiped out Yogeshwari said, "Yes, they fought for no result and I lost my husband for no valid reason and I am angry about it."

"What are your thoughts on the death of Prabhakaran?" She replied,

 "Yes, I never thought he would die in that manner too.Every Tamil thought he would achieve something but all ended and there is no bloodshed now. I am happy about that."

Her father Balasingham who was a village chieftain is a well read man. He lost hearing due to the noise of shelling during the war and Yogeshwari is the dearest daughter taking care of him.

Yogeshwari said not only her father but her husband too was a very respectful man and he never deserved such a death.

She also compared the current political situation to that era and said there is uncertainty still prevailing in the political arena of this country.

She is still bitter about her husband's death. "My children never knew him, and they hate to talk about it, which is obvious because his image has been tainted and the family was isolated from the society to some extent. People feared to sympathize with us fearing they would be taken away.

"He was a man who felt empathy for others and very helpful. Whatever he did, he did for a cause.
"I am still angry that Prabhakaran tortured and killed his best friend and he never faced me till he met his death."

Yogeshwari is one of those people who do not know what happened to her husband and she is left with no answers.

"Well, this is life. I don't have his photographs at my house and today I am recalling him after many years," Yogeshwari ended her chat with Ceylon Today.

amiesulo@gmail.com
(Pic by Manjula Dayawansa)

Sunday, 19 February 2017

Iraqi government launches offensive on west Mosul

About 750,000 civilians are still believed to be trapped in the city's west
 
Save the Children urged all parties to protect the estimated 350,000 children currently trapped in west Mosul.

Iraqi government launches offensive on west Mosul

Prime minister announces start of military operation to take back ISIL's last major urban territory in Iraq.

Iraq's prime minister has announced the launch of a military assault aimed at taking western Mosul from the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) group.

The Iraqi forces seized 15 villages from ISIL, also known as ISIS, on Sunday, according to top army commander Abdulamir Yarallah, advancing from several directions towards Mosul airport, which lies just south of the city.

"We announce the start of a new phase in the operation. We are coming to Nineveh to liberate the western side of Mosul," Haider al-Abadi said on television.

A top army commander later announced that forces led by federal police units retook villages south of Mosul, including Athbah, which leaves them within striking distance of the airport
"We launched our operation at 7am (04:00 GMT) ... We are heading towards the airport," said Abbas al-Juburi of the interior ministry's elite Rapid Response force.

The sky south of Mosul was black with smoke from air strikes and artillery as thousands of forces in armoured convoys worked converged on the airport.

"They're desperate," Ali, a Rapid Response officer, said in the village of Al-Buseif as helicopters flew overhead, tracking the last ISIL fighters attempting to flee.

"They will try to cause as many losses as possible, because they know they will die anyway," his colleague Alaa said.

Al Jazeera's Osama Bin Javaid, reporting from Erbil in northern Iraq on Sunday, said several groups were involved in a complex assault on ISIL positions.

"[Mosul is] flanked from the eastern side by counterterrorism forces, from the south by the Iraqi police, and from the north by the Iraqi military and the popular mobilisation forces, also known as the Shia militias," he said.

He said about 750,000 civilians are still believed to be trapped in the city's west
Aid organisations had feared an exodus of unprecedented proportions before the start of the fighting, which began four months ago with a government push on the east, but a significant majority of residents stayed home.

The aid community fears a bigger exodus from west Mosul, however.

"We are racing against the clock to prepare emergency sites south of Mosul to receive displaced families," Lise Grande, the UN's humanitarian coordinator in Iraq, said in a statement.

Save the Children urged all parties to protect the estimated 350,000 children currently trapped in west Mosul.

"This is the grim choice for children in western Mosul right now: bombs, crossfire and hunger if they stay - or execution and snipers if they try to run," said Maurizio Crivallero, the charity's Iraq director.
The Iraqi air force had on Saturday dropped leaflets on the west of the city, warning that a ground attack to push ISIL fighters out was imminent.

"Get ready to welcome the sons of your armed forces and to cooperate with them, as your brothers on the left side have done, in order to reduce losses and speed up the conclusion [of the battle]," read one leaflet.

Other leaflets warned ISIL fighters to "lay down their weapons and surrender".

The defence ministry announced last month that ISIL had been almost completely pushed out of the eastern side of Mosul, which is divided by the Tigris.

It later retracted that statement and fighting continues in some parts of the east.

More than 46,000 people  who fled Mosul as fighting raged have, though, been able to return to its eastern districts over the past few weeks despite the pockets of fighting.

Though the west bank of Mosul is slightly smaller than the east, the battle there is expected to be more difficult for government forces, especially in the narrow streets of the Old City.

The streets around the historic centre, which includes the mosque in which ISIL leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi made his only public appearance in June 2014, will be impassable for many military vehicles and force government fighters to take on ISIL in direct fighting.

The major push to recapture Mosul was launched on October 17, supported by bombing raids from a US-led coalition.

http://www.aljazeera.com/news/2017/02/iraqi-forces-launch-offensive-retake-west-mosul-170219045120508.html

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அரியலூர் மாவட்டம் செந்துறை அருகே சிறுகடம்பூர் கிராமத்தைச் சேர்ந்த ராஜேந்திரன் மகள் நந்தினி, 17. டிசம்பர் 29ம் தேதி 'காணாமல் போனார்`!  ஜனவரி 14ஆம் தேதி கிணற்றில் இருந்து சடலமாக மீட்கப்பட்டார்.இரும்புலிக்குறிச்சி போலீசார் வழக்கு பதிவு செய்து விசாரணை மேற்கொண்டனர். கீழமாளிகையைச் சேர்ந்த இந்து முன்னணி அமைப்பின் நிர்வாகி மணிகண்டன் , அவரது நண்பர் மணிவண்ணன் உள்ளிட்ட 4 பேர் கைது செய்யப்பட்டனர். திருச்சி மத்திய சிறையில் அடைக்கப்பட்டுள்ள மணிகண்டன் குண்டர் சட்டத்தின் கீழ் கைது செய்யப்பட்டுள்ளார்.நந்தினியை காதலித்து கர்ப்பமாக்கிய மணிகண்டன், நண்பர்களுடன் கூட்டாக பலாத்காரம் செய்து அவளது (அவரது) வயிற்றில் இருந்த கருவை எடுத்து எரித்துள்ளான். மணிகண்டன், நந்தினியை கிணற்றில் தள்ளி கொடூரமாக கொன்றது தெரியவந்துள்ளது.  இந்து முன்னணி தலைவர் மற்றும் இந்து முன்னணி மாவட்டத் தலைவர் ராஜசேகரை கைது செய்யக் கோரி, நந்தினியின் உறவினர்கள் கடந்த ஜனவரி 15ஆம் தேதி அரியலூரில் சாலை மறியலில் ஈடுபட்டனர். இவ்வழக்கை சிபிஐ விசாரிக்கக் கோரி மாதர் சங்கத்தினர் அரியலூரில் ஜனவரி 28ஆம் தேதி ஆர்ப்பாட்டத்தில் ஈடுபட்டனர். இந்த கொலை வழக்கு காலதாமதமாகவே வெளிச்சத்திற்கு வந்துள்ளது.


அரியலூர் நந்தினிக்கு நீதி கேட்டு மயிலாடுதுறையில் போராட்டம்
நாகை மாவட்டம் மயிலாடுதுறையில் திராவிடர் விடுதலைக்கழகத்தினர் நந்தினிக்கு நீதி வழங்கக்கோரி கண்டன ஆர்பாட்டத்தை நடத்தினர்.

அரியலூர் மாவட்டம் செந்தூறை வட்டம் சிறுகடம்பூனூரை சேர்ந்த பதீனேழு வயயதே நிறம்பிய தலித் சிறுமி நந்தினியை அதே கிராமத்தை சேர்ந்த மணிகண்டன் காதலித்திருக்கிறான். இந்து முன்னணியின் செந்தூரை கிழக்கு ஒன்றியச்செயலாளரான மணிகண்டன் நந்தினியை காதலித்து கற்பமாக்கி ஏமாற்றிவிட்டு, பிறகு அவனது நன்பர்கள் மணிவண்ணன், திருமுருகன், வெற்றிச்செல்வன் ஆகியோரை சேர்த்துக்கொண்டு  நந்தினியை கூட்டுபாலியல் வன்புணர்ச்சி செய்து, படுகொலை செய்து நிர்வாணமாக கீழ்மாளிகை கிணற்றில் வீசி எறிந்துள்ளனர். நந்தினியின் பிறப்புறுப்பை கிழித்து அவர் வயிற்றில் இருந்த ஆறுமாத சிசுவை அந்த பெண்ணின் சுடிதாரைக்கொண்டு கொளுத்தினர். அந்த சம்பவம் சமுக ஆர்வளர்கள் பலரையும் உரைய வைத்தது.

அப்படிப்பட்ட கொடுஞ்செயலில் ஈடுபட்ட இந்து முன்னனியினர் சிலரை கைது செய்யவேண்டும்,  நந்தினிக்கு உரிய நீதி கிடைக்க வழக்கை சிபிஐக்கு மாற்றவேண்டும்.நந்தினி குடும்பத்திற்கு இழப்பீடு வழங்கவேண்டும். ஜாதி ஆண வக்கொலையை தடுக்க தனிச்சட்டம் கொண்டு வரவேண்டும். தலித் மக்களின் பாதுகாப்பை உறுதிசெய்யவேண்டும் என்ற கோரிக்கைகளை முன்வைத்தனர்.

 

சசிகலாவின் எடப்பாடி தமிழக முதலமைச்சர் ஆனார்


நம்பிக்கை வாக்கெடுப்பில் எடப்பாடி வென்றார்

 தமிழக சட்டசபையில் எதிர்க்கட்சிகள் இல்லாமல் இன்று நடைபெற்ற நம்பிக்கை வாக்கெடுப்பில் முதல்வர் எடப்பாடி பழனிச்சாமி வெற்றி பெற்றதாக சபாநாயகர் அறிவித்துள்ளார்.

முதல்வராக பதவியேற்ற எடப்பாடி பழனிச்சாமி இன்று காலை சட்டசபையில் நம்பிக்கை கோரும் தீர்மானத்தை முன்மொழிந்தார்.

ஆனால் இதற்கு திமுக, காங்கிரஸ் மற்றும் ஓபிஎஸ் அதிமுக கடும் எதிர்ப்பு தெரிவித்தனர்.

கூவத்தூர் சிறையில் இருந்து எம்.எல்.ஏக்களை கைதிகளைப் போல நேரே சட்டசபைக்கு அழைத்து வந்து வாக்கெடுப்பு நடத்துவது சரியல்ல; அவர்களை தொகுதிகளுக்கு அனுப்பி வைத்துவிட்டு ஒருவாரம் கழித்து ரகசிய வாக்கெடுப்பு நடத்த வேண்டும் என்று திமுகவினர் வலியுறுத்தினர்.

 நேற்று சட்டமன்றத்தில் நடந்த நம்பிக்கை வாக்கெடுப்பில் வெற்றி பெற்றதையடுத்து இன்று ஆளுநரை முதல்வர் சந்தித்து அதுகுறித்து முறைப்படி தெரிவித்தார் .தமிழக சட்டசபையில் நேற்று நம்பிக்கை வாக்கெடுப்பு நடைபெற்றது. இதில் முதல்வர் எடப்பாடி பழனிசாமி நம்பிக்கை வாக்கெடுப்புக்கான தீர்மானத்தை முன்மொழிந்தார். இரண்டு முறை அவை ஒத்திவைக்கப்பட்டு, கடும் அமளிக்குப் பிறகு நம்பிக்கை வாக்கெடுப்பில் 122 சட்டமன்ற உறுப்பினர்களின் ஆதரவுடன் பழனிசாமி வெற்றி பெற்றார்.

Saturday, 18 February 2017

கேப்பாப்பிலவு நாள் இருபது




கேப்பாப்பிலவு முகாமை விலக்கும் உத்தரவு வரவில்லை – சிறிலங்கா விமானப்படை

Feb 19, 2017 | 0:06 by கி.தவசீலன் in செய்திகள் 
 

keppapilavu (4)சிறிலங்கா விமானப்படையினர் வசம் உள்ள தமது காணிகளை விடுவிக்கக் கோரி, கேப்பாப்பிலவு மக்கள் நடத்தும் தொடர் போராட்டம் இன்று (19-02-2017) 20ஆவது நாளை எட்டியுள்ள நிலையில், தமது நிலைகளை அங்கிருந்து விலக்கிக் கொள்ளுமாறு பாதுகாப்பு அமைச்சிடம் இருந்து எந்த அறிவுறுத்தலும் வரவில்லை என்று சிறிலங்கா விமானப்படை கூறியுள்ளது.

கேப்பாப்பிலவில் உள்ள விமானப்படை நிலைகளை விலக்கிக் கொள்வது குறித்த எந்த அறிவுறுத்தலும் பாதுகாப்பு அமைச்சிடம் இருந்து வரவில்லை என்றும், எனினும், இந்தப் பிரச்சினைக்கு தீர்வு காணுவதற்கான வாய்ப்புகள் குறித்து ஆலோசனை நடத்தப்படுவதாகவும் சிறிலங்கா விமானப்படை அதிகாரிகள் தெரிவித்துள்ளனர்.

இதுகுறித்து கருத்து வெளியிட்டுள்ள சிறிலங்கா விமானப்படைப் பேச்சாளர் குறூப் கப்டன் சந்திம அல்விஸ், அப்பகுதி மக்கள் கூறுவது போன்று, விமானப்படை முகாம் அமைந்திருக்கும் காணிகள் தனியாருக்குச் சொந்தமானதல்ல என்று வனவிலங்குகள் திணைக்களம் கூறியுள்ளது.

எனினும் குடியிருப்பாளர்களின் கூற்றுக்களின் துல்லியத்தன்மை தொடர்பாக சம்பந்தப்பட்ட பாதுகாப்பு அதிகாரிகளுடன் நாம் கலந்துரையாடல்களை நடத்தி வருகிறோம். எனினும் இதுவரையில் எந்த முடிவும் எடுக்கப்படவில்லை” என்று தெரிவித்துள்ளார்.
முன்னதாக, கேப்பாப்பிலவில் போராட்டம் நடத்தும் மக்களின் காணிகளை விடுவிக்க சிறிலங்கா அதிபரிடம், இராணுவத் தளபதி இணங்கியிருப்பதாக, சிறிலங்கா அமைச்சர் டி.எம்.சுவாமிநாதன் கூறியிருந்தார் என்பது குறிப்பிடத்தக்கது.

Wednesday, 15 February 2017

China Tells India To Stay Off Its Indian Ocean 'Colony,' Sri Lanka

 
China Tells India To Stay Off Its Indian Ocean 'Colony,' Sri Lanka

Panos Mourdoukoutas  ,  Contribut I cover global markets, business and investment strategy 

After claiming South China Sea to be its own sea, telling America to stay off its islands, China is reaching for the Indian Ocean, telling India to stay off its own "colony," Sri Lanka.

That’s something investors in Southeast Asian markets should keep a wary eye on, as it opens yet another front between the two Asian giants, raising the geopolitical risk of investing in the region.

Sri Lanka’s "colonization" began back in 2007, when China supplied President Rajapaksaboth military and diplomatic support to crush the Tamil Tigers. Then came high profile construction projects and high interest loans that eventually were swapped for equity, transforming China into an owner of Sri Lanka’s major port— and a key outpost in the Indian Ocean for Beijing.

That’s bad news for India, which is becoming encircled by China.

“China’s growing involvement in sensitive ports so close to India’s shores fed New Delhi’s long-standing concerns about Chinese encirclement,” writes Jeff M. Smith in Foreign Affairs.

For its part, China has repeatedly asserted that it doesn’t plan to use the port for military purposes, this assertion coming as recently as last week.

But history proves otherwise. In the past three years, Chinese submarines  have begun suddenly and repeatedly showing up in the Chinese-operated South Container Terminal in the port of Colombo.
And that’s in spite of India’s high profile protests.

“For India, the sudden appearance of a Chinese submarine in Sri Lanka was too much to bear,” continues Smith.“Seventy percent of Colombo’s transshipment traffic comes from India, and New Delhi has long been concerned over China’s efforts to expand its presence in the island nation.”
When Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi met Rajapaksa a few weeks later, he reminded him that Colombo ‘was obliged to inform its neighbors about such port calls under a maritime pact.’ But the same submarine surfaced again in November 2014, catching New Delhi by surprise once more.

Apparently, what China says it plans to do with its "colony" and what it actually intends to do are two different things. And India must either devise a plan to contain China or be prepared to put up with it.

ஈழம் யார் நிலம்


கேப்பாப்பிலவு ENB சுவரொட்டி





காணி உரிமை போராட்டத்தில் கேப்பாப்புலவு மக்களுக்கு கிழக்கு மாகாண தமிழர்கள் ஆதரவு

12 பிப்ரவரி 2017

இலங்கையின் வடக்கே தங்களின் காணி உரிமைக்கான போராட்டத்தில் இரு வாரங்களாக தொடர்ந்து ஈடுபட்டுள்ள கேப்பாப்புலவு மக்களுக்கு ஆதரவு தெரிவித்து கிழக்கு மாகாதமிழர்கள்ஞாயிற்றுக்கிழமை
ஆர்ப்பாட்டம் செய்தனர்.

கேப்பாப்புலவு மக்களுக்கு ஆதரவு தெரிவித்து கிழக்கு மாகாண தமிழர்கள் ஆர்பாட்டம்

ஆர்ப்பாட்டத்தில் கலந்து கொண்டவர்கள் வடக்கு - கிழக்கு மாகாணங்களில் தமிழ் மக்களின் காணி உரிமையை வலியுறுத்தும் வகையிலான பதாகைகளை ஏந்தியவாறு கோஷங்களை எழுப்பினர்.

காணி உரிமை போராட்டத்தில் ஈடுபட்டுள்ள கோப்பாபுலவு மக்களின் காணியை மீட்பது தொடர்பாக அரசாங்கமும் ஜனாதிபதியும் கவனம் செலுத்த வேண்டும் என்றும் கேட்டுக் கொண்டனர்

முல்லைத்தீவு மாவட்டம் கேப்பாப்புலவு பகுதியில் விமானப்படை முகாம் அமைந்துள்ள தங்கள் காணிகள் விடுவிக்கப்பட வேண்டுமென கோரி காணி உரிமையாளர்கள் விமானப் படை முகாம் முன்பாக போராட்டத்தில் ஈடுபட்டு வருகின்றனர்.

84 குடும்பங்களுக்கு சொந்தமான இக்காணிகள் கடந்த 31ம் தேதி விடுவிக்கப்படும் என ஏற்கனவே அறிவிக்கப்பட்டிருந்த போதிலும் அது ஏமாற்றமாகிவிட்டதாக காணி உரிமையாளர்கள் தெரிவிக்கின்றனர்.

போராட்டத்தில் ஈடுபட்டுள்ள மக்கள் உரிமை கோரும் காணி, வன இலாகாவிற்குரியது என இலங்கை விமானப்படை கூறுகின்றது,
 

Sunday, 12 February 2017

சமரன்: நிதி நிலை அறிக்கை; கழக கண்டன ஆர்ப்பாட்டக் காட்சிகள...

சமரன்: நிதி நிலை அறிக்கை; கழக கண்டன ஆர்ப்பாட்டக் காட்சிகள...: மோடி கும்பலின் தேசவிரோத, மக்கள் விரோத நிதி நிலை அறிக்கையை எதிர்த்துப் போராடுவோம்!     மோடி கும்பலின் தேசவிரோத, மக்கள் விரோத நிதி...

Wednesday, 8 February 2017

The story of the people of Kepapilavu

கேப்பப் பிலவு மக்களின் ஒரு தரப்புக் கதை:

In search of justice: The story of the people of Kepapilavu

 The life and times of the people of Kepapilavu should make for a study in endless suffering. After witnessing the war at its cruellest, experiencing multiple displacements and spending the longest interval of time confined in Menik Farm, one would expect that life can hardly get any worse. Yet, their present situation is darker than their past, and the future is a landscape of uncertainty.

The story of the people of Kepapilavu reminds all of us that the ethnic conflict is far from over. Their reality contradicts the regime’s claims of rapid post-war development and the rhetoric of peace.
So much for rights

“Any citizen of Sri Lanka has the inalienable right to acquire land in any part of the country, in accordance with its laws and regulations, and reside in any area of his/her choice without any restrictions or limitations imposed in any manner whatsoever”  
The Lessons Learnt and Reconciliation Commission Report ( 6.104).

The Headquarters of the 59th Division, in Kepapilavu, Mullaitivu spans over a thousand acres. Much of the residential land and some of the agricultural land are believed to be legally owned by private individuals who hold legal documentation. This military base is the root cause of all the problems the people of Kepapilavu are facing. The Government Agent of Mullaitivu and several military officials, who visited the Kepapilavu families in Menik Farm a few days before the closure of the internment facility, promised the people that they would be resettled in the lands of origin within two months. It’s been three months and the promised resettlement is yet to happen: the people are still living in Seeniyamottai, a barren area close to Nandikkadal. They were forced to take refuge here as a temporary measure after leaving Menik Farm.

Massive buildings in the Kepapilavu HQ and the army’s general behaviour suggest that the promised closure of this facility will not happen anytime soon. The allocated compensatory plots, in Seeniyamottai, are infertile and smaller in size than the lands in Kepapilavu. The army is coercing the people into accepting Seeniyamottai as the alternative. In a bid to seal the dispossession, the army is building permanent houses for the families; in contrast humanitarian agencies refused to construct any permanent structures, fearing that it would compromise the people’s rights and wishes. When six women braved their circumstances and made preparations to file fundamental rights petitions to acquire their lands back, they were called into the GN office and threatened by high ranking army officials. They were apparently told that their pursuit of justice would ‘result in losing what little they have.’

The normal and the abnormal

 Fear and intimidation caused by the military’s presence is plainly visible. The level of military involvement in civilian life in the Seeniyamottai camp is a grim reminder of Menik Farm days. The uniformity in the people’s answers to certain questions demonstrates that they are under strict orders.
For ordinary people, survival is the priority. Enforcing helplessness is the simple strategy employed by the Government in its attempts to normalise the present. The goons, the conventional army, and the military intelligence department operate on many different levels in the mission to silence the people’s voice. The goons go around throwing petrol bombs, pouring foul oil on protestors and collecting information for the higher powers; the conventional army is the pacifying force, and does the propaganda work as well; the intelligence department is responsible for promptly removing anyone who shows the slightest glimpse of political awareness. While this is the general trend in the North and the East, in the Vanni it is worse. The day when the abnormal becomes the normal is not far away. As for the people in Kepapilavu, it has already happened.

Unwillingness to learn from the past

 The mistreatment of Kepapilavu families highlights that Sri Lanka is yet to repent for its original sin: the failure to treat the minority communities as equal citizens. Living in one’s land of origin is a fundamental right. The denial of this right was a major factor that gave rise to the country’s ethnic conflict. It is depressing to see the mistake so wilfully repeated in the lives of the people of Kepapilavu. Indeed, what we are witnessing now is nothing new. Sri Lanka has already seen the consequences of arrogant denial of rights.

Today, in Sri Lanka, more than ever, the place of the minorities’ is increasingly under threat. The self-proclaimed patriots who concern themselves with the fight against separation remain consciously ignorant of the causes that gave rise to the Tamil struggle. Tamil political leaders have failed to envision a new strategy: they seem stuck with the international community – a force that has failed the Tamils and will happily do so again. Moderates, of course, are silently watching the inferno burn down the country. Will Sri Lanka ever learn?

Natural justice, the Chief Justice and the people of Kepapilavu

 Ironically, the people in Kepapilavu are the very people the state proudly claims to have liberated from the LTTE. Recently, the government drafted an Action Plan to implement the LLRC recommendations. And it has also promised a new dawn in Sri Lanka’s human rights history. Three-and-a-half-years after the end of war, there is nothing new in the lives of the people in Kepapilavu.
‘I just want to live and die in the land of my origin,’ a middle-aged mother summed up the entire community’s plight. The demand to return to their lands goes beyond economic reasons, and has nothing to do with any ethno-political ideology. There is no justification for setting up a swarm of military bases and stealing private lands in the process. This land grab by the military is illegal, and must be treated as such. The Army HQ must be closed down, or relocated, and people must be allowed to settle in the original habitat.

Natural justice does not discriminate between the powerful and the powerless, or between ethnicities. The Chief Justice and the people of Kepapilavu, in the eyes of justice, are the same. Those who want the PSC’s verdict on the impeachment motion annulled on the grounds of natural justice, in the same spirit, should be willing to defend the basic right of the people of Kepapilavu. After all, the government gave the CJ a trial: the people of Kepapilavu cannot even file a petition.

Donald Trump should not be allowed to speak in UK parliament, says Speaker


Donald Trump should not be allowed to speak in UK parliament, says Speaker

Government sources describe John Bercow’s comments about US president as ‘hugely political and out of line’

Anushka Asthana , Jessica Elgot, Rowena Mason
Monday 6 February 2017 23.01 GMT  First published on Monday 6 February 2017 17.07 GMT 

Donald Trump is unfit to address MPs, according to the Speaker of the House of Commons, who said that he would refuse to invite the US president to speak at Westminster because of parliament’s long held opposition “to racism and to sexism”.

John Bercow warned that the opportunity to speak in the prestigious Westminster Hall during a state visit “is not an automatic right, it is an earned honour” in an extraordinary intervention that divided MPs and annoyed No 10.

The unprecedented step caused many MPs to pour praise on Bercow, but also triggered an angry response in parts of government with ministers privately claiming that he had overstepped the mark.
Senior figures accused the Speaker of grandstanding – while his counterpart in the House of Lords, Lord Fowler, was understood to be irritated by the unexpected statement.

Bercow, whose role is non-political, told MPs that he did not have the power to block the state visit invitation extended to Trump by Theresa May, but made clear that he would use his authority to prevent what is considered one of the high points of the official trip.

The Speaker made clear that he was always against the idea of Trump making a speech in the same hall that Barack Obama did in 2012, but said recent policies had left him even more determined to block the move.

“After the imposition of the migrant ban by President Trump I am even more strongly opposed to an address by President Trump in Westminster Hall,” Bercow told MPs, who were visibly shocked by his comments.

“I would not wish to issue an invitation to president Trump.”

In a raised voice, he added: “I feel very strongly that our opposition to racism and to sexism and our support for equality before the law and an independent judiciary are hugely important considerations in the House of Commons.”

The Speaker made clear that invitations to address Westminster Hall were not simply issued by him but also Fowler.

“The Lord Speaker was not consulted by Mr Bercow on his statement. The Lord Speaker will make his own statement tomorrow to the Lords,” said a House of Lords spokesperson.

Bercow’s intervention is hugely significant because of the process by which a dignitary is invited to speak. Officials made clear that a government request to invite a head of state would be sent to Bercow and Fowler, who both have to agree to it. The lord great chamberlain, who represents the Queen, is then consulted.

His unexpectedly strong response shocked ministers and Downing Street officials, who have been working hard to build relations with the new president, including through the recent visit in which Trump grasped hold of the prime minister’s hand. May has also offered to be a “bridge” to Trump for European Union leaders, in a bid to make the most of the special relationship, which is seen as increasingly important by advisers following the Brexit vote.

“Bercow better make sure of the president’s plan before he shoots off like this. The clear indications are that the White House are not even planning to address both houses of parliament,” one government source said.

The mood in Downing Street was said to be mild annoyance with the Speaker, with some questioning “if there is anything else that has never been proposed to which he would like to object”. The White House did not respond to a request for comment on Bercow’s statement.

But there was also a sense that the Speaker – who has sat as a Conservative MP – was sufficiently separate to May for his comments to be of “no real consequence”.

Bercow was responding to a point of order by Labour MP Stephen Doughty, whose early day motion calling on officials to withhold permission for an address to Westminster Hall was signed by 163 colleagues.

I am delighted that the Speaker has listened to members from across the house regarding our deep concerns that Donald Trump not be honoured with an address in Westminster Hall or elsewhere in the Palace of Westminster, after his comments and actions on women, torture, refugees and the judiciary,” he said.

Labour’s Yvette Cooper said Trump was “continuing his assault on the democratic values that the British Parliament holds dear”.

She said it was fine to invite him to the UK but not to offer the “special privilege of an address in the heart of our democracy”.

And Chi Onwurah said that more than 1.8 million people had signed a petition against a Trump address at Westminster Hall, saying it was “ridiculous” to allow it to go ahead. “I am glad the Speaker has given voice to what so many feel.”

Tory MP Heidi Allen admitted the comments were “controversial” for some, but insisted they were right.

However, Tory MP Andrew Bridgen said a number of his colleagues were surprised and annoyed by Bercow’s intervention. “He’s completely overstepped the mark. It was a pre-emptive strike to torpedo the leader of the democratically free world and our greatest ally from speaking in parliament,” he said, stressing the importance of a UK-US trade deal.

“Our relationship is now more important than at any time than the second world war.”

Bercow made clear that he had less say over the Royal Gallery — a second, smaller room that is used by world leaders to address parliamentarians — although he said he still had “a say in that matter”.
The government has rolled out the red carpet in a state visit more than 100 times, with controversial figures including Vladimir Putin and Robert Mugabe travelling to Britain for the honour. However, visits do not always include an invitation to address parliament. Westminster Hall tends to be limited to the most coveted guests, which have included the Pope, Nelson Mandela and Barack Obama.
Other leaders, including Narendra Modi, the Indian prime minister, have spoken in the Royal Gallery.
Government sources have told the Guardian that Trump would see such an address as “the ultimate establishment” act and claimed he would not want it. Instead, he is keen on the “pomp and ceremony” of a visit with the Queen, a military parade and golf at Balmoral palace.

Monday, 6 February 2017

சமரன்: நிதி நிலை அறிக்கை 2017-18, கழக முழக்கமும் கண்டன ஆர...

சமரன்: நிதி நிலை அறிக்கை 2017-18, கழக முழக்கமும் கண்டன ஆர...:   மோடி கும்பலின் தேசவிரோத, மக்கள் விரோத நிதி நிலை அறிக்கையை எதிர்த்துப் போராடுவோம்!   * 2017-18 நிதிநிலை அறிக்கை அந்நிய முதலீட்டு...

Saturday, 4 February 2017

ENB-TENN:தமிழீழச் செய்தியகம்: Trump's aggression towards Iran will deepen sectar...

ENB-TENN:தமிழீழச் செய்தியகம்: Trump's aggression towards Iran will deepen sectar...:  Patrick Cockburn  Donald Trump's Twitter aggression towards Iran will deepen sectarian conflict in the Middle East In pursui...

Trump's aggression towards Iran will deepen sectarian conflict in the Middle East


Patrick Cockburn
Donald Trump's Twitter aggression towards Iran will deepen sectarian conflict in the Middle East

In pursuit of an anti-Iranian line, the Trump administration is making the same mistake as that made by Western governments after the 2011 uprisings in the Arab world. They tended to think in terms of nationalities and the nation state, but in the Middle East these count for less as communal bonds than religious identity
The US President has said that ‘nothing is off the table’ in relation to current disagreements between the US and Iran

President Trump is adding further venom to the raging sectarian hatreds tearing apart Iraq and Syria by his latest ill-judged tweets. These have far greater explosive potential than his better known clashes with countries like Australia and Mexico, because in the Middle East he is dealing with matters of war and peace. In this complex region, the US will have to pay a high price for switching to a vaguely belligerent policy which pays so little regard to the real situation on the ground.

In one tweet this week, Trump says that “Iran is rapidly taking over more and more of Iraq even after the US has squandered three trillion dollars there. Obvious long ago!” In fact, it is not obvious at all because it is not true. Iran was in a stronger position in Iraq before June 2014 when the Isis offensive captured Mosul, defeated the Iraqi army and provoked the fall of the government of Nouri al-Maliki who was close to Iran.

The victories of Isis at that time led to a return of US influence in Iraq as President Obama created a US-led air coalition which has launched thousands of air strikes against Isis. He sent at least 5,000 US military personnel backed by thousands of American contractors who handle training and logistics for the current Iraqi army assault on Mosul. The attack is very much a joint US-Iraqi joint operation and has turned into the hardest fought battle in Iraq since the US invasion of 2003.

But Trump is not the only person saying that Iraq is increasingly controlled by Iran. Isis continually maintains that the majority Iraqi Shia community, which makes up about two thirds of the 33 million Iraqi population, is not really Iraqi but Iranian. Isis has always demonised the Iraqi Shia as religious heretics and “Safavids”, called after the Iranian dynasty, and said they are not real Muslims and deserve to die. Saudi Arabia, with whose rulers Trump recently had a long conversation, holds somewhat similar views about equating Shia Islam with Iran and the need to combat both.

Trump’s claim about growing Iranian control of Iraq might be dismissed as nonsense without long term consequences. But there are other arrows pointing in the same direction: Iraqis, Iranians and others in the region are pointing to the bizarre make-up of the list of seven states whose citizens have been temporarily banned from entering the US. This is supposedly directed against al-Qaeda and Isis, drawing on lessons learned after 9/11. But none of the states from which the hijackers came – Saudi Arabia, United Arab Emirates, Egypt and Lebanon – are subject to the ban as are Iraq and Iran. “The list looks like its intent is basically anti-Shia,” says one observer in Baghdad and the governments of Saudi Arabia and Turkey seem to think the same thing, since they have either supported or failed to condemn the US action, though it is more or less openly directed against Muslims.

The Trump administration seems to think in tweets and slogans, so it is probably wrong to speak of a coherent change in policy. But in its first weeks in office, it has been far more vocal about confronting a supposed Iranian threat than it has about eliminating Isis. This came across clearly on Wednesday when the national security adviser, General Michael Flynn, once head of the Defence Intelligence Agency until sacked by Obama, accused Iran of conducing a “provocative” nuclear missile test in breach of a UN Security Council resolution and helping Houthi rebels in Yemen, saying “as of today we are putting Iran on notice”. The phrase about Iran was repeated in a tweet by Trump, indicating a greater concern in the White House about Iran than Isis and little interest in the titanic battle being waged for control of Mosul. In some secret location in that city, the self-declared caliph Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, may be pondering the same question that is absorbing other world leaders: how much of what Trump says is just bombast and how far will it turn into reality on the ground? It is a little early to say, but the signs are not encouraging.

Amber Rudd: Donald Trump’s travel ban a ‘propaganda opportunity’ for terrorists
In any case, bombast alone is capable of reshaping the political landscape. Paradoxically, White House actions in the Middle East are creating the very conditions for Iran to displace US influence in Iraq in a way that Trump wrongly imagines has already happened. Responding to the travel ban, the Iraqi parliament declared that US citizens proposing to enter Iraq over the next 90 days should be subjected to the same restrictions. The Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi refused to go along with this, saying it was more important to keep cooperation with the US while the battle for Mosul is still going on.

But the matter is not likely to rest there, because the US relationship with Iran in Iraq has always been a curious mixture of open rivalry and rather more covert cooperation, since they share a common enemy in Isis and, previously, in al-Qaida in Iraq. American power in Iraq has grown since 2014 because it is Iraq’s main military ally. Without US and coalition air strikes, the Iraqi army could not defeat Isis or even hold its own against it. But the US political position in Iraq is weaker than its military one and, thanks to the US travel ban and Trump’s escalating attacks on Iran, it’s going to get weaker still. The ban is a “golden opportunity” for Iran to push back against the US, said a former senior Iraqi official. “Iraqis are very worried,” said Kamran Karadaghi, an Iraqi commentator and former chief of staff to the Iraqi presidency. “If anything bad happens to Iran because of Trump, it will be bad for Iraqis.”

Trump says 'Iran is playing with fire' after ballistic missile test

In pursuit of an anti-Iranian line, the Trump administration is making the same mistake as that made by Western governments after the 2011 uprisings in the Arab world. They tended to think in terms of nationalism, nationalities and the nation state, but in the Middle East these count for less as communal bonds than religious identity. Thus, what was essentially a Sunni Arab uprising in Syria six years ago changed the balance of power between Sunni and Shia in Iraq and restarted the civil war there. The threat to President Bashar al-Assad and his Alawite dominated government was bound to lead to the Shia in Iran, Iraq and Lebanon rallying to his support to prevent his overthrow, because they felt that was an existential threat to themselves.

The Trump administration has not made any disastrous missteps in the Middle East yet, but, going by its actions over the last week, it may soon do so. There is the same mixture of wishful thinking, misinformation and arrogance in Washington as led to the US disaster in Lebanon in 1982-83 and in Iraq after 2003. Trump’s tub-thumping in quarrels with Australia and Mexico may not have very dire effects in the long term because no blood is being spilt. But in the Middle East, a zone of wars, Trump’s angry amateurism is more likely to produce a thoroughgoing disaster.
 

Seattle judge blocks Trump's travel ban; White House to appeal

World News | Sat Feb 4, 2017 | 10:25am GMT

 
Seattle judge blocks Trump's travel ban; White House to appeal
 
By Dan Levine and Scott Malone | SEATTLE/BOSTON

A Seattle federal judge on Friday put a nationwide block on U.S. President Donald Trump's week-old executive order that had temporarily barred refugees and nationals from seven countries from entering the United States.

The judge's temporary restraining order represents a major setback for Trump's action, though the White House said late Friday that it believed the ban to be "lawful and appropriate" and that the U.S. Department of Justice would file an emergency appeal.

Still, just hours after the ruling, U.S. Customs and Border Protection told airlines they could board travellers who had been affected by the ban.

Trump's Jan. 27 order caused chaos at airports across the United States last week as some citizens from Iran, Iraq, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria and Yemen were denied entry. Virtually all refugees were also barred, upending the lives of thousands of people who had spent years seeking asylum in the U.S.

The State Department said Friday that almost 60,000 visas were suspended in the wake of Trump's order; it was not clear Friday night whether that suspension was automatically revoked or what travellers with such visas might confront at U.S. airports.

While a number of lawsuits have been filed over Trump's action, the Washington state lawsuit was the first to test the broad constitutionality of the executive order. Judge James Robart, a George W. Bush appointee, explicitly made his ruling apply across the country, while other judges facing similar cases have so far issued orders concerning only specific individuals.

The challenge in Seattle was brought by the state of Washington and later joined by the state of Minnesota. The judge ruled that the states have legal standing to sue, which could help Democratic attorneys general take on Trump in court on issues beyond immigration.

Washington's case was based on claims that the state had suffered harm from the travel ban, for example students and faculty at state-funded universities being stranded overseas. Amazon.com (AMZN.O) and Expedia (EXPE.O), both based in Washington state, had supported the lawsuit, asserting that the travel restrictions harmed their businesses.

Tech companies, which rely on talent from around the world, have been increasingly outspoken in their opposition to the Trump administration's anti-immigrant policies.

Judge Robart probed a Justice Department lawyer on what he called the "litany of harms” suffered by Washington state’s universities, and also questioned the administration's use of the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks on the United States as a justification for the ban.

Robart said no attacks had been carried out on U.S. soil by individuals from the seven countries affected by the travel ban since that assault. For Trump’s order to be constitutional, Robart said, it had to be “based in fact, as opposed to fiction.”

Gulf carrier Qatar Airways will allow passengers barred by an executive order last week to board flights to the United States, after Robart's order, a spokeswoman told Reuters.

But for some who had changed their travel plans following the ban, the order was not enough reassurance.

In Dubai, Tariq Laham, 32, and his fiance Natalia had scrapped plans to travel to the U.S. after their July wedding in Poland, where Natalia is from.

Laham said the couple would not reverse their decision.

"It is just too risky," said Laham, a Syrian who works as a director of commercial operations at a multinational technology company. "Everyday you wake up and there is a new decision."

"OUTRAGEOUS ORDER"

The White House said it would file an appeal as soon as possible.

    “At the earliest possible time, the Department of Justice intends to file an emergency stay of this outrageous order and defend the executive order of the president, which we believe is lawful and appropriate,” the White House said in a statement.

"The president’s order is intended to protect the homeland and he has the constitutional authority and responsibility to protect the American people."

Washington Governor Jay Inslee celebrated the decision as a victory for the state, adding: "No person - not even the president - is above the law."

The judge's decision was welcomed by groups protesting the ban.

“This order demonstrates that federal judges throughout the country are seeing the serious constitutional problems with this order,” said Nicholas Espiritu, a staff attorney at the National Immigration Law Center.

Eric Ferrero, Amnesty International USA spokesman, lauded the short-term relief provided by the order but added: "Congress must step in and block this unlawful ban for good."

But the fluid legal situation was illustrated by the fact that Robart's ruling came just hours after a federal judge in Boston declined to extend a temporary restraining order allowing some immigrants into the United States from countries affected by Trump's three-month ban.

A Reuters poll earlier this week indicated that the immigration ban has popular support, with 49 percent of Americans agreeing with the order and 41 percent disagreeing. Some 53 percent of Democrats said they "strongly disagree" with Trump's action while 51 percent of Republicans said they "strongly agree."

State Department informed of court ruling on Trump's immigration order - spokesperson
U.S. Customs give airlines green light to board all visa-holders after Seattle ruling
At least one company, the ride-hailing giant Uber, was moving quickly Friday night to take advantage of the ruling.

CEO Travis Kalanick, who quit Trump's business advisory council this week in the face of a fierce backlash from Uber customers and the company's many immigrant drivers, said on Twitter: "We have a team of in-house attorneys who’ve been working night & day to get U.S. resident drivers & stranded families back into country.

"I just chatted with our head of litigation Angela, who’s buying a whole bunch of airline tickets ASAP!! #homecoming #fingerscrossed"

FOUR STATES IN COURT

The decision in Washington state came at the end of a day of furious legal activity around the country over the immigration ban. The Trump administration has justified its actions on national security grounds, but opponents have labelled it an unconstitutional order targeting people based on religious beliefs.

In Boston, U.S. District Judge Nathan Gorton expressed scepticism during oral arguments about a civil rights group's claim that Trump's order represented religious discrimination, before declining to extend the restraining order.

U.S. District Judge Leonie Brinkema in Alexandria, Virginia, ordered the federal government to give the state a list by Thursday of "all persons who have been denied entry to or removed from the United States."

The state of Hawaii on Friday also filed a lawsuit alleging that the order is unconstitutional and asking the court to block the order across the country.

He lists several examples of Syrian friends from around the world, whose work and personal life had been thrown into disarray by Trump's orders.

One has been unable to visit family residing in the U.S., while another was unsure whether they would be able to take up a job offer in California after their U.S. visa appointment was cancelled in the wake of the ban.

(Additional reporting by Mica Rosenberg in New York, Brian Snyder in Boston and Lawrence Hurley, Lesley Wroughton, Julia Edwards and Susan Heavey in Washington, Tom Arnold and Alexander Cornwell in Dubai; Writing by Jonathan Weber and Kristina Cooke; Editing by Bill Rigby, Nick Macfie and Alexander Smith)