1815 & 2015 a spine-chilling comparison: Betrayal by Sri Lanka’s Quislings
None of the 3 colonial powers invaded our island. But our island did fall because of the betrayal of our own people. It happened in 1815 and it is happening again exactly two hundred years later. In fact, the similarities and events as they are being rolled out are shocking.
D’Oyly was the mastermind behind the Kandyan Convention and had in his pocket Dissave Ehelepola and Dissave Molligoda. The modern day D’Oyly’s are many and constitute personages that have been interfering in the internal affairs of Sri Lanka from the West, India & the UN. D’Oyly resembles the many western/Indian envoys seen cutting deals with present day politicians/political parties showering them with promises and perks to get their allegiance to their agendas. Then you get characters like Ehelepola who had second thoughts after seeing the draft which can be likened to Udaya Gammanpila leaving Rajapakse camp and then returning!
The European colonials had successfully created groups of brown sahibs who would at every turn betray their own, thinking it a privilege to serve the white men! A good look at the detrimental agreements that have been signed since independence helps to understand how far leaders can be bought over to betray the nation & the people. Bestowing of name titles created the first group of traitors and thereafter colonials began paying for telling tales and secretly carrying messages to the minorities. Notice how many a known crook are today bestowed with international rewards and titles!
The colonial invaders were quick to realize that Buddhism and the people’s affinity to Buddhism was its key obstruction and they devised ways and means to destroy people’s affinity to it and dilute the power Buddhism yielded over people at all levels - religious, socially, culturally and even politically. Some of the harsh and destructive methods adopted during colonial rule have been replaced with more subtle and camouflaged approaches – denying use of elephants for Perahera claiming it to be based on animal rights (while not stopping animal sacrifice), denying playing of pirith in temples, closure of Temple Tills (while not adopting same policy for other religions), incidentally in 1956 Buddharakitha thero bankrolled the SWRD campaign using the temple funds. Thus, we can now understand why the temple tills are now being sealed!
Moreover, from ancient times it has been the Sinhalese & the Buddhist clergy that have not only protected the nation but guided the rulers. These two pillars form the foundation of the strength of the ruler. During colonial rule practice of Buddhism was forbidden, the Buddhist priests were murdered or had to go into hiding. Today Buddhist monks are being arrested & treated like criminals (while not taking action against Church fathers who have been linked to terrorism), denying state funds to pirivena education, attempting to turn pro-Buddhist national schools into multicultural schools, rewriting history and removing history from school textbooks while forcing Buddhist daham pasal to adopt a shared values programs removing students from knowing the essence of Buddhism (are all methods to incrementally disassociate State from protecting and fostering Buddhism as presently bound by the Constitution), encouraging pervasions of Buddhist teachings so as to divert Buddhists into the wrong path of practice! Similarly, those that defended the nation were what we call the present day army, these men were hounded and killed for going against foreign rule it is no different to the manner the West is hounding the Sri Lankan Army for defeating the LTTE which was a Trojan horse of the West and used to politically influence governments in power. Today the military is being framed for war crimes while intelligence officers are being locked up under bogus charges sans evidence!
The deposed King Sri Wickrama Rajasinghe had a steadfast loyal following and these groups rebelled from time to time against the British. This is like the following of the former President who are watching in shock as the country falls apart knowing too well how regime changed states have ended up vassal states with no sovereignty. It is also true that the follies of the King and the former President also played a key role in distancing the people from both rulers and led to them falling prey to foreign conspired smear propagandas that deposed both ultimately.
It was in 1823 the British began selling Crown Land at two shillings an acre to British entrepreneurs and now under new business nomenclatures state lands and national assets are being siphoned off or privatized, all falling into foreign hands that will reap the profits while eternally burdening the general public with increased taxes that people cannot refuse to pay. Immediately after coming to power, the present government lifted the restrictions for foreigners to purchase property/ condominiums and now many of the high rise apartments are being bought by foreigners many of whom are Maldivians, Arabs, Indians & Chinese! The ILO is also now looking at how labor laws can be changed to suit transnational corporations all hoping to tap cheap labor, foreign labor (through ETCA) and make profits & drain the profits out of Sri Lanka without state interference or legal actions!
The present ‘ethnic’ crisis came about after flooding the country with Indian slave labor and creating a group of privileged ethnic Tamils who have been used discretely to challenge the majority.
All that’s left to see is the rebellions that took place in 1818, 1822 to repeat and a genocide of the majority to take place under orders of the quislings. As we now revisit the past we wonder whether some of the insurrections in the 1970s and 1980s were also part of the endeavor to wipe out talented individuals and aspiring leaders and thereafter using terrorism to again wipe out another batch of future leaders who went to defend the nation by sacrificing their lives. Little by little as the patriotic few are being targeted, hounded and eliminated what will be left are the quislings, the sepoys and their treacherous following unless we all wake up and see the similarities and learn lessons from the past and NOT allow the treacherous history to repeat.
At every turn the treacheries that took place in 1815 are now being repeated with worse venom two hundred years later. The DNA of the quislings are running through all those now calling the shots and turning our island into a neocolonial state where the sweat and blood sacrifices of those who fought to defend the nation have become compromised to result in the same treachery committed by the chieftains that handed over the nation to the British in 1815.
Shenali D Waduge