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Foreign interference in SL Muslim problem

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From the very moment that the BBS became prominent in Sri Lanka, there has been speculation about sinister foreign forces operating behind it. There is certainly a Norwegian connection, about which no clarification has been forthcoming. Now the BBS leaders are in the US on a month-long visit, which is reportedly part of a programme to make their movement international. There seems to be big money and power behind the BBS. Most curious of all are the coincidences between what is happening here and in Burma.

 

I concluded my article, Sri Lankan Muslims in the racist paradigm (The Island of March 18) with the following paragraph: "Were the Bodu Bala Sena and the JHU unaware of what was going on in Geneva, and that the anti-halal campaign could have very adverse consequences there? Commonsense should have dictated that the anti-halal campaign be postponed until the conclusion of the UNHRC meeting. Some who are over-fond of conspiracy theories would say that they are secretly serving the purposes of the US and of India. Others would say that they have been manipulated by the CIA and RAW without being aware of it. I cannot subscribe to such notions. I have the strong conviction that the explanation for the horrendous mistiming of the anti-halal campaign is to be found in the irrationality that goes with racism. The usual paradigm of racism does not include a recognition of the fact that racism and irrationality go together."

Let me make my position absolutely clear before proceeding further. Both the BBS and the JHU are very widely regarded as extreme racist organizations, and therefore both have to be regarded as having a proneness to extreme irrationality. It was that extreme irrationality – and not their being traitors – that made them blind to what was going on in Geneva. But, of course that extreme irrationality would also make it very easy for the CIA, RAW etc to manipulate them without their being aware of it. Assuming that they were indeed manipulated, we have to ask what were the presumed objectives of the CIA, RAW etc. The objectives could have been along the following lines: the anti-Muslim hate campaign, which clearly had the acquiescence if not the positive support of the government behind it, could lead to genocide and, therefore, it was impossible for any self-respecting Muslim state to vote against the anti Sri Lanka US Resolution. Without the Muslim vote for Sri Lanka, the US Resolution would have won overwhelmingly, and Sri Lanka would have been seen internationally as a virtual pariah state. That may be precisely what certain sinister forces want for Sri Lanka. Fortunately, the indefatigable campaigning of the Pakistani Foreign Minister and her officials prevented that outcome. Anyway, there is no getting over the fact that objectively – whatever might be the subjective intentions of the BBS and the JHU – their allowing the anti-halal campaign to mount to a crescendo precisely at that time served the purposes of the enemies of Sri Lanka. They should be more alert to the international implications of their actions in the future.

From the very moment that the BBS became prominent in Sri Lanka, there has been speculation about sinister foreign forces operating behind it. There is certainly a Norwegian connection, about which no clarification has been forthcoming. Now the BBS leaders are in the US on a month-long visit, which is reportedly part of a programme to make their movement international. There seems to be big money and power behind the BBS. Most curious of all are the coincidences between what is happening here and in Burma. The T-shirts worn by the demonstrators in both countries look identical except that the logos are different, suggesting that they were produced by the same manufacturer. A new wave of anti-Muslim violence broke out last month, this time in central Burma against Muslims regarded as indigenous Burmans unlike the Rohingyas who were targeted last year. Apparently the rhetoric used by the Buddhist monk leader there is very similar to the rhetoric used here.

Consider this for example: "When the profit goes to the enemy’s hand, our nationality, language and religion are all harmed. They will take girls with this money. They will force them to convert religion. All children born to them will be a danger to the country. They will destroy the language as well as the religion." It seems to be the same unholy brew as in Sri Lanka, with a nexus drawn between money, sex, and conversion. This could be standard fare in racist hate speech, or it could be that the same sinister forces are operating behind the campaigns in Sri Lanka and Burma.

I have no hard evidence to cite in support of my position that the same sinister forces could be at work behind the campaigns in Sri Lanka and Burma. Even so, I concluded my article Clarifications on Genocide in The Island of April 22 with the following: "I must also say that I have come to suspect more and more strongly that behind the nonsense about halal and the anti-Muslim programme sinister foreign forces have been at work." Though lacking the hard evidence I can however set out the rationale for that position. But, before doing that I must refer to important material about secret service activity in Sri Lanka that I came across while in the process of writing this article. The material is given in Upul Joseph Fernando’s article Paving the way for US intervention in Sri Lanka? (Ceylon Today of April 24). According to the American website World Net Daily a source within the Iranian Intelligence Services told it (WND), even before the identities of the Boston bombing suspects became known, that the Islamic regime was behind them and to look for trails through Sri Lanka and Bangladesh. Earlier when the German bakery bomb explosion took place in Pune (India), the chief suspect had in his confession revealed that the final operational plan had been drawn up in Colombo. Various details were given in that connection. Another interesting detail is that President Bush had stated that a Sri Lankan Tamil speaking Muslim was the chief financial officer and money launderer behind the clandestine operations of A. Q. Khan (the reputed father of Pakistan’s nuclear bomb). A further detail worth mentioning is that a few months ago the New York based Open Society Foundation had in their report mentioned that Sri Lanka permitted use of its air space and airports for flights associated with the CIA’s extraordinary renditions operations in 2003.

There is further interesting material in the article but I will not go into all that as my purpose is merely to point to material indicating that several secret services have been active in Sri Lanka. But I must quote the following from UJF’s interesting speculations in his concluding paragraphs: "In essence, all these revelations and disclosures amount to an alarming trend in Indian and American strategy – vis-à-vis Sri Lanka. Both countries are committed to proving Sri Lanka as a hot-bed of Islamic terrorism targeting Europe, America and India."

I will now set out the rationale for believing that the same sinister forces could be behind the anti-Muslim campaigns in Sri Lanka and Burma. It all goes back to the 1972 Arab-Israel war, in the aftermath of which there was a phenomenal increase in oil prices. One of the main beneficiaries was Saudi Arabia, which chose to spend part of that wealth in spreading its Wahabi version of Islam. Its main instrument for that purpose was the madrasa, which provided free education since under Islam it is forbidden to make money out of religion. The main beneficiaries of madrasa education were members of the poor and the lower middle classes, precisely the classes from which violent revolutionaries are bred. The result was seen in the Eastern Province in the form of violent incidents after the death of a Sufi mystic, who caked himself Pailuwan (wrestler). Later there was violence in Beruwela, the result of what orthodox Muslims would regard as sacrilegious behaviour on the part of Wahabi Muslims. At the time of the conclusion of the war in 2009 there were several Jihad groups in the Eastern Province, and it took some time to make them give up their weapons. Not much more is known to the general public about the impact of Wahabism in the Eastern Province. But as UJF’s article brings out the EP and the rest of Sri Lanka have for years been a hotbed of international secret service activity.

The madrasa education has everywhere led to what is called political Islam, militant Islam, and fundamentalist Islam, which has bred hatred of the West and terrorism. The US and India, as well as Pakistan, Iran, and Israel had to be concerned about what was going on in Sri Lanka on the religious front and we can expect that all their secret services have been active here. In connection with the anti-Muslim campaign we have to be concerned mainly about the possible interests of the US and India. The US could want to alert our government to the dangers that could flow from Wahabism. As I have argued in earlier articles, halal is really a non-problem, something that could have been easily solved. But, the halal problem was a way of targeting the ACJU, which significantly is regarded as the spear-head for Wahabism in Sri Lanka.

But, I don’t believe that the US will pursue its own interests in Sri Lanka at the expense of India’s interests. If the US did promote the anti-Muslim hate campaign, it would have been to serve India’s interests. How have those interests been served? The hate campaign leads to one resounding question: if the Muslim minority which has been so much on the side of the Sinhalese against the Tamils can be treated in this way, how can we expect the Sinhalese to ever give fair and equal treatment to the Tamils? The question leads to the idea that a political solution for the Tamils has to go beyond 13A or even 13A+. Was that what the TNA President Suresh Premachandran had in mind when he told a visiting delegation of Indian MPs, "We need an interim administration overseen by India or the United Nations until there is a final settlement for the Tamils."

~ www.island.lk ~ By Izeth Hussain

 

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