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Why we should vote for President Rajapaksa

President Mahinda Rajapaksa had a difficult time waging a diplomatic battle in the political front to keep away foreign interventions attempting to foil the battle against the terrorists. That was patriotism, and that was a President who kept his word. As the Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces and the President of Sri Lanka, the victory over the thirty-year-old terrorism in Sri Lanka is primarily his. Despite that if one wants to vote against the President Mahinda Rajapaksa, which, one has a right to do, one should then be clear in his mind, what are the reasons that justify such a decision?

Sarath Fonseka calls for a change. But a change for the better cannot come from Sarath Fonseka, who is not a real patriot. A patriot would not come forward to lead a country as its President only to stop corruption and to end the executive powers of the President. There should be the greater objective of unifying the country under one flag and get the different Communities in Sri Lanka to shed their Communal identities to become one with the Sri Lankan Nation.

His latest acceptance of the TNA to support him in his election campaign is not a move to unify Sri Lanka, but to divide the country by setting up a Tamil Eelam in

President Mahinda Rajapaksa

the North-East. The TNA is working to obtain by cunning what Prabhakaran could not obtain through terrorism.

Noble object

President Mahinda Rajapaksa moves towards the more noble object of unifying the country and make a United Sri Lankan Nation with the now divided Communities. Having eliminated the disastrous terrorism, he said that there are no minorities in Sri Lanka, but there are those who love the country and those who do not.

If Sarath Fonseka is a real patriot he should have supported President Mahinda Rajapaksa, giving up his personal ambition of becoming the President on the ground that he was the Military Commander who led the armies to defeat terrorism.

Sarath Fonseka is today an ambitious hatemonger. He is not suitable to be the President of Sri Lanka, not only because he is a military man with no political experience, but also because he has taken a vow of allegiance as a citizen of America.

A President of a Sovereign State cannot have a divided allegiance. Sarath Fonseka to continue his election campaign should in the first instance show to his electors that he is a patriotic citizen of Sri Lanka by renouncing his claim to USA citizenship.

He has not publicly stated that he has given up his ‘green card’ and repudiated his claim to the citizenship of USA. As the President of Sri Lanka he cannot have one step here and the other elsewhere. An ordinary citizen may have the right to keep a double citizenship, but not one who seeks to be the Citizen number one of a country. He is duty bound to have an undivided allegiance to the country of his birth if he seeks to be its President.

Perhaps the law of Sri Lanka is not clear on the point of requiring a candidate seeking election as the President of Sri Lanka should only be a citizen of Sri Lanka, without taking any oath of allegiance as a citizen of another country.

If there is no such requirement in our legal system, it is a serious lapse. However, the voters have the right to know where Sarath Fonseka’s allegiance lies and refuse his vote to him if he is claiming citizenship of another country.

We know that Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and Assistant Secretary of State for Asia Robert Blake had sympathized with the terrorists in Sri Lanka. Therefore, it is apparent that the US Government is sympathetic towards the terrorists of Sri Lanka. The President Barack Obama himself spoke out against a judicial decision taken against an errant Sri Lankan journalist.

Therefore Sarath Fonseka a ‘green card’ holder who has perhaps taken the oath of allegiance as a citizen of USA, will by consent of being a citizen of America becomes a sympathiser of the terrorists of Sri Lanka, he claims he defeated in battle. Could the Sri Lanka electors then accept Sarath Fonseka as a suitable candidate to lead the Sri Lankan Nation as its President?

Sarath Fonseka since his nomination had been making promises without any concern for the future of the country. A salary increase of Rs 10,000 will cause immense economic difficulties to a country which has so many development projects in hand, and many more to be undertaken.

His consent to accept the support of the TNA itself shows that what he wants is not the welfare of the country and its people, but to get elected as the President at any cost, because he has a grudge against President Rajapaksa and his very able brothers who stood by the President to enable him to fulfill his 2005 election promise of eliminating terrorism and unifying the country.

One wonders whether Sarath Fonseka accepts every one who comes forward to support him making impossible demands, merely to get elected as the President, so that once elected he will form a military government and make all those impossible promises he had made null and void.

Personal glory

That is the danger that all those who are enthusiastic with Sarath Fonseka’s promised change, do not seem to understand. Sarath Fonseka is after his own personal glory and cares less for the country and its people. It may not be a surprise, if days after his election as the President and the Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces, he will commandeer the Armed Forces to take over all Government establishments.

It is a possibility as these type of regime changes had already taken place in Iran, Guatamala, Chile and many other countries very ably arranged by the CIA.

Sarath Fonseka is a victim of a terrorist assassination attempt. He vehemently opposed the removal of the High Security Zones, when he was stationed as the Commander of Jaffna. He was number one on the terrorist’s list of persons to be assassinated. He was leading an Army of Sinhala Buddhist Soldiers against the terrorist he vowed to eliminate. Seeing his soldiers die in great numbers, he claimed that Sri Lanka belongs to the Sinhalese and the other Communities should not make undue demands.

Such a man cannot change overnight and accept the demands of the TNA to merge the North and East, release all suspected terrorists in prisons, remove the Army Camps from Jaffna. There is surely some thing in the back of his mind, and that does not auger well for the future of our country.

Barack Obama

David Miliband

Hillary Clinton

Therefore the electors should be vigilant and use their vote wisely. Even if one feels that they do not agree with President Rajapaksa, and put him in the category of a ‘hopeless devil’, a known ‘hopeless devil’ is better than the unknown ‘ambitious devil’.

Mahinda Rajapaksa sought to be elected as the President of Sri Lanka in 2005, to bring an end to terrorism, through dialogue. But having failed in his attempt to meet Prabhakaran face to face, he began a series of peace negotiations. Having failed in an attempt, he was forced to resort to military operations when the terrorists closed the sluice gates of Mavil Aru depriving water to thousands of farmers. And that ended up with the defeat of the terrorists at Nandikadal in May 2009.

With that President Mahinda Rajapaksa fulfilled his first election promise to his electors. People seem to have now forgotten the difficulties the President had in gaining his victory over the terrorists. The war against terrorism was not only a destruction of the naval force of the terrorists, their meeting places and communication centres, face to face fighting capturing their fortified towns, villages and earth-bunds, but also to stall attempts by terrorist friendly foreign governments to stop the military offences against terrorists.

President Mahinda Rajapaksa refused their call for ceasefire, despite the fact that he knew that he was antagonizing the foreign governments, but he had no alternative as he was determined to end terrorism, at whatever cost, that being the promise he gave to his people. He may have thought in his heart of heart that the European Governments proud of their Christian civilization, the cradles of democracy would eventually understand and finally applaud him for his determination to end terrorism, a global disaster, a menace to human civilisation.

But unfortunately the end of terrorism in Sri Lanka made us see the hypocrisy of the West. They have a love and hate relationship with terrorism. They categorise terrorism, as their terrorism and other peoples’ terrorism. They loved the terrorists in Sri Lanka and their elimination has made the Western Governments vengeful towards the Government of Sri Lanka. Phillip Alston of UN who is a great sympathizer of the Sri Lanka terrorists is all out to inculpate Sri Lanka for war crimes. And Robert Evans of EU threatens Sri Lanka with the withdrawal of GSP+.

Terrorist leadership

David Miliband the British Foreign Secretary and the French Foreign Minister Bernard Kouchner came to Sri Lanka with the intention of saving the terrorist leadership. They were well received by President Mahinda Rajapaksa, but they were kindly requested not to interfere.

They later together with the US Secretary of State moved to adopt a resolution in the UN Security Council to send UN Peace troops to intervene in Sri Lanka. But President Mahinda Rajapaksa had the support of China and Russia who stood firmly against such a move.

The President Mahinda Rajapaksa had a difficult time waging a diplomatic battle in the political front to keep away foreign interventions attempting to foil the battle against the terrorists.

That was patriotism, and that was a President who kept his word. As the Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces and the President of Sri Lanka, the victory over the thirty-year-old terrorism in Sri Lanka is primarily his. Despite that if one wants to vote against the President Mahinda Rajapaksa, which, one has a right to do, one should then be clear in his mind, what are the reasons that justify such a decision?

What are the reasons some people give to vote against President Rajapaksa to bring about a change?

There are those who make allegations of corruptions against the President and his brothers, but allegations by themselves do not prove any thing. Those allegations have to be proved. So far nothing has been done except make noises and innuendos.

Then there are those who blame the President for having his brothers around him holding positions of importance.

But it was his brother Gotabhaya Rajapaksa a man with considerable experience in war and negotiations, who brought the three Forces together and provided them with arms and war material, and carried out an exceptional job in the war against the terrorists, and continues even today to disable the activities of the vast network of Sri Lanka terrorists overseas.

The President’s other brother Basil Rajapaksa was engaged in constant contact with the Government of India to keep the Tamil Nadu State at bay and stop any interventionists’ attempts by the Government of India. He was also maintaining good relations with the political leaders in the East and looking after the IDPs. The President’s elder brother was looking after the development of the Ports in the Colombo, Galle, Kankasenthurai and the new port in Hambantota.

President Mahinda Rajapaksa fortunately had his brothers who were qualified and capable to carry out the different functions allocated to them. He could trust that the work that they have been given would be carried out well and with responsibility. Above all he could trust them. So what is wrong in having employed his brothers. It is the people of Sri Lanka who have benefitted from their employment.

The Opposition speaks of the Rajapaksa family, as if they were nincompoops who lived freely at government expense. But it was the Rajapaksa family that delivered us from terrorism. We should be thankful to them.

The other allegation levelled at President Mahinda Rajapaksa is that he had the largest Cabinet in the world. That was the fault of the JVP. The JVP left the government when the President was beginning his task of elimination of the terrorists. If the government crashed for want of a majority the elimination of terrorism in Sri Lanka would have remained a far cry.

Cabinet posts

The President had to think fast and use his political acumen to keep his government afloat. The only way to do this was to win the confidence of politicians of the Opposition. They would not come unless they were given some sort of incentives. He first signed a MoU with the UNP and when it was not working he gave Cabinet posts to those who were willing to remain with him to consolidate his government, so that he could assure that the military solution to eliminate terrorism could be given effect. If the President did not set up that strategy, the government may have crashed and the military operation against the terrorists would have stopped.

We can imagine the scenario if that had happened. So why blame the President for the large Cabinet, which was a decision he was forced to take when the JVP left him without an alternative solution of even assuring their support while being in the Opposition.

Unfortunately he did not have brothers in the JVP. If he had they would have remained with him.

Another allegation levelled against the President is why he has people like Labour Minister Mervyn Silva, whose indiscipline some times causes concern. But perhaps the President’s future plans to eliminate the underworld elements may necessitate the services of a person like Mervyn Silva. But though not quite disciplined Mervyn Silva is not a dangerous person. Therefore, that is no reason to blame the President for his more humane acceptance of the indiscipline of a devoted friend. On the other hand, is it not a great human quality of the President not to discard a friend because he is different?

Taking into consideration all what has been said, electing the President Mahinda Rajapaksa for another term in office is to continue the good work he had commenced, and allowing him to complete the changes he had promised in the Mahinda Chintana. There are many promising projects under way, and a change now will only hamper the development of these projects, the beneficiaries of which are the people of Sri Lanka.

A change should not be made for the sake of a change. A change should be to get some thing better, and that change for the better cannot be expected from Sarath Fonseka making all sorts of delirious promises, without any planned development projects.

The change for the better we can expect only from the President Mahinda Rajapaksa, a man of the people, simple, forthright, humane, a genuine son of the soil of whom we can be proud of.


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