Power mapping Image by Maatram, via Groundviews I was asked to contribute an article to an up-coming issue of The Architect, the journal of the Sri Lanka Institute of Architects. The issue will be anchored to the idea of space. After the guest editor accepted my article without any reservations or edits, he was informed by the Editor in Chief a few ...

Web Publishing for All! Introducing Community Translator Tools Publishing tools for everyone Roughly half of the content and traffic on the internet is in English1, yet English is the mother tongue of only about a quarter of internet users2, and less than 5% of the world’s population.3 We believe that WordPress.com should be for everyone, not just English speakers — it’s why we already serve WordPress in 131 ...

Six years ago, by this time the Sri Lankan national flag was fluttering from every house, every building and even every vehicle. It was raised not by the Sinhalese, but by every Sri Lankan....Six short years later from that day, Sri Lankans are hesitant to raise the national flag, to commemorate this proud historical moment.....Six short years later from that ...

Photo by EPA/M.A.PUSHPA KUMARA, via Sky News I start with a quote from Shang Yang (390-338 BC), an insightful statesman in the Chinese state of Qin: “A country where the virtuous govern the wicked will suffer from disorder, so that it will be dismembered; but a country where the wicked govern the virtuous will be orderly, so that it will become strong.” Although ...

Street Photography: Seven Photos It’s no secret that I love to pore through the street photography tag in the WordPress.com Reader and share images that catch my attention. Join me on another trip around the world as seen through the eyes (and lenses!) of these seven skilled photographers. This arresting image of a bird in a car — juxtaposed against the unknowing elderly man ...

Post-war Sri Lanka: 6 years and still an open wound On May 19 six years had passed since the war ended. Six years ago former president Mahinda Rajapaksa spoke to the people of Sri Lanka commenting the final battle of the war: “Our troops went to this operation carrying a gun in one hand, the Human Rights Charter in the other, hostages on their shoulders, and the love of ...

NO to Animal Cruelty. YES to Animal Welfare Bill Image courtesy Embark Recently a video which was shared by a Sri Lankan on his Facebook managed to grab a lot of attention. Why? Many reasons. One probably being that some people liked watching cruelty to animals, the other due toa petition which was launched against the video, requesting that the man be punished for cruelty he inflicted on ...

A tale of two Presidents, six years after the war May 19th 2015, marked six years since the end of Sri Lanka’s civil war, which at that time had been the world’s second longest running civil conflict, after Lebanon. The end of the war was commemorated in two very different ways from two very different leaders, one present and forward looking, the other defeated and backward looking, who lead a ...

Tamils in North & East Sri Lanka remember those killed despite intimidation and surveillance Several remembrances events were held across the North and East in Sri Lanka on 18th May 2015 (the day the war ended in Sri Lanka in 2009) by Tamils to remember those killed during the war[1]. They were organized by Tamil politicians, religious clergy, civil society and women’s groups. Many were religious events. Most appear to commemorate civilians killed ...

Strongly denying accusations regarding the death of 40,000 Tamil civilians during the final phase of the offensive on the Vanni east front (January-May 2009), Field Marshal Sarath Fonseka on Sunday (May 17) said that the army had to pay a very heavy price for not having the liberty to use heavy weapons against the LTTE.

Today is a strange anniversary. It’s like a birth and a death. On this day Vellupilai Prabhakaran was killed, ending nearly 30 years of a terrorism in Sri Lanka. He took thousands of civilian hostages to try and save his cause but it didn’t work. The Sri Lankan military eliminated him and the LTTE while suffering great losses. Contrary to ...

Links: Chinese, US economic clout Just the linksHow China Covered The World (31 Countries) In "Liquidity Swap LinesEssentially, China has used bilateral swap agreements to help embed the yuan in international trade in the the post-crisis era. As you'll see below, counterparty countries have also tapped their yuan liquidity lines when they're cut off from dollar funding, making China a critical lifeline for bolstering FX ...

Tour of Trees in Colombo Today morning (17th.May) the National Trust Sri Lanka (NTSL) conducted a Tour of Trees in Colombo making the participants aware of the varied selection of large trees that are hardly noticed within the city environment. Though urbanized, Colombo still has lots of large trees where some of them are over 100 years. Vihara Maha Devi Park (formerly Victoria Park) and its suburban ...

An open letter to Opposition Leader Nimal Siripala de Silva Photo courtesy WHO Hon. Nimal Siripala de Silva MP Leader of the Opposition Sir Marcus Fernando Mawatha Colombo 7. My dear Honorable Sir, I thought of writing to you, due to the upcoming general election and the choices that face the SLFP in that context. My interest stems from my own personal association with the Party and is also ...

Can the United Kingdom Survive the General Election Result? Image courtesy fivethirtyeight Editor’s Note: The UK general election last week threw up an interesting configuration of parliamentary representation, with the Conservatives winning an unexpected UK-wide majority in House of Commons, and the Scottish Nationalist Party (SNP) winning a landslide of all bar two parliamentary seats in Scotland. The future of the United Kingdom has been central to political ...

Five years ago, today: Evicted and homeless Photo courtesy JDS On 8th May 2010, the Urban Development Authority (UDA) demolished 20 homes that were occupied by 33 families on Mews Street in Kompannyaveediya, Colombo 2. Families were informed verbally a month prior to the demolition that they will have to vacate their homes and served the same in writing only 3 days prior to the demolition. ...

Speaking notes: The future of tech and peacekeeping, re:publica 2015 Invited by ZIF – Center for International Peace Operations and representing the ICT4Peace Foundation, I spoke today at re:publica15 in Berlin, Germany on the future of peacekeeping and technology. The session this morning had a very compelling title: NERDS WITH BLUE HELMETS? DIGITAL INNOVATION AND PEACEKEEPING. My submission was anchored to the following points: Following from the ‘Performance Peacekeeping’ report, what ...

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