Wikileaks on Sri Lanka


Wiki Leaks has an assortment of documents under the category Sri Lanka. None of them are particularly shocking and is unlikely to get anyone killed. The most interesting one I spotted is the U.S. Congressional Research Office report on Sri Lanka (CRS: Sri Lanka: Background and U.S. Relations, January 22, 2008).

I didn’t read it completely (I’m lucky to get time to peck this). Just looked through the headings, ran a few word searches and read the most interesting sections I could find. Overall the document doesn’t contain any stunning new revelations (at least for the insignificant and politically irrelevant minority of blog reading Sri Lankans). However those willing to sniff through it will be able to pick up some interesting nuggets.

I found 2 interesting points.

  1. There’s only 1 mention of China. Surprising given the “concerns” most first world countries have about China’s out reach/influence on third world countries.
  2. The phrasing of Military to military relations and aid between the U.S and Sri Lanka verges on the hilarious:

“Bush Administration insists that U.S. military assistance to Sri Lanka does not support Colombo’s efforts to expand the country’s ethnic conflict, but rather is focused on bolstering the country’s ability to defend itself against terrorism.”

Yet Sri Lanka has granted
“grant blanket overflight and landing clearance to U.S. military aircraft, and routinely grants access to ports by U.S. vessels.”

Military info buff would find plenty of interesting fact – though most of them could be located in openly available sources such as U.S. Department of State Press Releases and White house announcements.

I have not read through the other the Sri Lanka related documents. Most seem to be larger south Asia focused texts that cover Sri Lanka. Quite a few relate to the Tsunami, and the UN’s many worries in the region. Lasantha Wickremetunge ‎is mentioned along with a story he highlighted about a National ID card tender controversy. So is an accounting audit of the Living Church of God Sri Lanka, an organisation listed under Wikileak’s “Cults and religious organisations” context.

Overall it goes to show how irrelevant Sri Lanka is in the greater scheme of the planet – until it becomes otherwise.

Somewhere in that merge heap of bland details I’m sure there’s a interesting nugget or two. If you spot any please let me know.

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4 thoughts on “Wikileaks on Sri Lanka

  1. Will nose and report back, there’s a knack to reading this stuff from US polic departments. They are deliberately inane, turgid and vague but always nugget or two. Like that time when they discovered the US has a plan to make Pakistan a failed state by 2015, looks like they will be ahead of schedule now.

    The thing with Sri Lanka is that Britain (by neglecting the Commenwealth), India (by concentrating on its land borders) and US (most hadn’t heard of SL until the tsunami) have all ‘dropped the ball’ on this.

    SL is disproportinately significant in the greater scheme of things – control of it has featured in all the main European colonial expansions and it will play a part in the next wave of colonial/economic expansion from the East. This is purely by the matter of its geographic location.

    If you read some of the military journals from India (available online), they are still rueing the day they let China take Tibet, thereby creating a human buffer of non-Chinese that China can afford to use as cannon fodder if there is another war between them. They are paranoid that China supports Pakistan in its efforts to attack India. They consider themselves surrounded by enemies. This is the way these people think, purely in terms of resources and grabbing them and advancing their particluar agenda/’policy’. Do you think they’ll let SL drift into the Chinese orbit so easily?

    This is how things are and I think it’s better to know the nastiness of geopolitics – rather than ignore it. To look at the sheer nastiness of humanity and then be grateful for the little bits of good that we have.

    Anyway, we’re a wily bunch, I’m sure we’ll play the new game just as we’ve always have. All credit to the human sprit.

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  2. to judge sri lanka’s place “in the greater scheme of the planet” by amount of wikileaks is a bit silly. unless by ‘planet’ one means primarily english speaking ( ie english doc producing ) western centered world ( which is in the process of relative decline to rest of the world ).

    btw sri lanka is best served always by playing the foreigners interested in us against each other.

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    1. That’s the most sensible approach really. Also don’t forget to fleece the buggers at every opportunity.

      The other day I was looking at literacy rates across the world, SL has around 80% adult and 98% for children. India apparently had a literacy rate of 18% when the British left and had around 60% now.

      The av. ‘Indian’ had earnings in the ratio of 1:4 comapred to an av. Brit before it was under colonial rule, afterwards the ratio was something like 1:16 (this was from another obscure book on Indian Ocean trade). Truely, that country was ars*-fcuked for hundreds of years.

      I say this because recently in old Blightly there has been three, four, five series of ‘documentaries’ by very minor celebrities all going on trips (mainly on the railways, oh the railways) around India with a barely disguised purpose of trumpeting something like “the Raj was a benefit after all, never mind the bad bits, it was good on the whole, look you all can speak English at least and dominate the IT industry.”

      Total collective, intellectual amnesia at least in the ‘popular’ culture about all of the ‘bad bits’ over here. This is a shame because it leads to complaints about what the hell are all these (dark skinned) foreigners doing in England anyway, why are they here, send them back… at EVERY election.

      Anyway, the SL got of fairly lucky, OK we killed each other over our designated ‘ethnicities’ but don’t all post-colonial societies? But SL still manages to have its own languages, religions and culture. Compared this to the Philipines where the Portuguese destroyed all their literature so they lost their script (was only re-discovered in the 1980s). So their language is written in the Roman script.

      Destroy the language/literature, convert to the colonisers relgion and bingo you have a totally servile group of people you can exploit because you got them thinking according your way and you got them in your heirarchy placed, most importantly, beneath you.

      If you want to know why some countries are so fcuked up, look at their history. If we learn from that may there will still be Sri Lankans for a few thousand years more.

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  3. Wikileaks are good, But I do not think I will read all the 90,000 recently leaked US documents. I will let Ban Ki Moon’s new delegation (will there be such?) read them and report.
    International politics are hilarious, if you are in a mind to laugh. Otherwise it is utter bull, over and over.

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