Author: Philip Murphy
Publisher: Oxford University Press
Release Date: 2018-08-01
In the wake of Brexit, the Commonwealth has been identified as an important body for future British trade and diplomacy, but few know what it actually does. How is it organized and what has held it together for so long? How important is the Queen's role as Head of the Commonwealth? Most importantly, why has it had such a troubled recent past, and is it realistic to imagine that its fortunes might be reversed?In The Empire's New Clothes,? Murphy strips away the gilded self-image of the Commonwealth to reveal an irrelevant institution afflicted by imperial amnesia. He offers a personal perspective on this complex and poorly understood institution, and asks if it can ever escape from the shadow of the British Empire to become an organization based on shared values, rather than a shared history.
Author: Paul Moorcraft
Release Date: 2013-03-19
In 2009, the Sri Lankan government forces literally eradicated the Tamil Tiger insurgency after 26 years of civil war. This was the first time that a government had defeated an indigenous insurgency by force of arms. It was as if the British army killed thousands of IRA cadres to end the war in Northern Ireland. The story of this war is fascinating in itself, besides the international repercussions for ‘terrorism’ and insurgency worldwide. Many countries involved themselves in the war – to arm the combatants (China, Pakistan, India, and North Korea) or to bring peace (US, France, UK, and Norway). While researching this work Professor Moorcraft was given unprecedented access to Sri Lankan politicians (including the President and his brother, the Defense Permanent Secretary), senior generals, intelligence chiefs, civil servants, UN officials, foreign diplomats and NGOs. He also interviewed the surviving leader of the Tamil Tigers. His conclusions and findings will be controversial. He reveals how the authorities determined to stamp out Tamil Tiger resistance by whatever means frustrated the media and foreign mediators. Their methods, which have led to accusations of war crimes, were brutally effective but are likely to remain highly contentions for years to come.
Author: Mark Salter
Publisher: Oxford University Press
Release Date: 2015-07
Genre: Conflict management
Between 1983 and 2009 Sri Lanka was host to a bitter civil war fought between the Government and the Tamil Tigers, which sought the creation of an independent Tamil state. In May 2009 came the war's violent end with the crushing defeat of the Tamil Tigers at the hands of the Sri Lanka Army. But prior to this grim finale, for some time there had been hope for a peaceful end to the conflict. Beginning with a ceasefire agreement in early 2002, for almost five years a series of peace talks between the two sides took place in locations ranging from Thailand and Japan to Norway, Germany and Switzerland. To End a Civil War tells the story of trying to bring peace to Sri Lanka. In particular it tells the story of how a faraway European nation--Norway--came to play a central role in efforts to end the conflict, and what its small, dedicated team of mediators did in their untiring efforts to reach what ultimately proved the elusive goal of a negotiated peace. In doing so it fills a critical gap in our understanding of the Sri Lankan conflict. But it also illuminates in detail a much wider problem: the intense fragility that surrounds peace processes and the extraordinary lengths to which their proponents often stretch in order to secure their progress.
Author: Freedom House
Publisher: Rowman & Littlefield
Release Date: 2013-10-10
Genre: Political Science
Freedom in the World, the Freedom House flagship survey whose findings have been published annually since 1972, is the standard-setting comparative assessment of global political rights and civil liberties. The survey ratings and narrative reports on 194 countries and 14 territories are used by policymakers, the media, international corporations, civic activists, and human rights defenders to monitor trends in democracy and track improvements and setbacks in freedom worldwide.
Author: Amarnath Amarasingam
Publisher: University of Georgia Press
Release Date: 2015-09-15
Genre: Social Science
Pain, Pride, and Politics is an examination of diasporic politics based on a case study of Sri Lankan Tamils in Canada, with particular focus on activism between December 2008 and May 2009. Amarnath Amarasingam analyzes the reactions of diasporic Tamils in Canada at a time when the separatist Tamil movement was being crushed by the Sri Lankan armed forces and revises currently accepted analytical frameworks relating to diasporic communities. This book adds to our understanding of a particular diasporic group, while contributing to the theoretical literature in the area. Throughout, Amarasingam argues that transnational diasporic mobilization is at times determined and driven as much by internal organizational and communal developments as by events in their countries of origin, a phenomenon that has received relatively little attention in the scholarly literature. His work provides an in-depth examination of the ways in which a separatist sociopolitical movement beginning in Sri Lanka is carried forward, altered, and adapted by the diaspora and the struggles that are involved in this process.
Author: Frances Harrison
Publisher: House of Anansi
Release Date: 2012-09-20
"An extraordinary book. This dignified, just and unbearable account of the dark heart of Sri Lanka needs to be read by everyone." — Roma Tearne, author of Mosquito The tropical island of Sri Lanka is a paradise for tourists, but in 2009 it became a hell for its Tamil minority, as decades of civil war between the Tamil Tiger guerrillas and the government reached its bloody climax. Caught in the crossfire were hundreds of thousands of schoolchildren, doctors, farmers, fishermen, nuns, and other civilians. And the government ensured through a strict media blackout that the world was unaware of their suffering. Now, a UN enquiry has called for war crimes investigation, and Frances Harrison, a BBC correspondent for Sri Lanka during the conflict, recounts those crimes for the first time in sobering, shattering detail.
Author: Frank Vogl
Publisher: Rowman & Littlefield Publishers
Release Date: 2012-08-24
Genre: Political Science
Waging War on Corruption is a fascinating look at worldwide corruption by a leader of the global anticorruption movement. Frank Vogl draws on twenty years of experience to share a history filled stories of activists, victims, and villains; strengthening our understanding of the complexities of corruption with wisdom and integrity.
Samanth Subramanian has written about politics, culture, and history for the New York Times and the New Yorker. Now, Subramanian takes on a complex topic that touched millions of lives in This Divided Island. In the summer of 2009, the leader of the dreaded Tamil Tiger guerrillas was killed, bringing to an end the civil war in Sri Lanka. For nearly thirty years, the war's fingers had reached everywhere, leaving few places, and fewer people, untouched. What happens to the texture of life in a country that endures such bitter conflict? What happens to the country's soul? Subramanian gives us an extraordinary account of the Sri Lankan war and the lives it changed. Taking us to the ghosts of summers past, he tells the story of Sri Lanka today. Through travels and conversations, he examines how people reconcile themselves to violence, how the powerful become cruel, and how victory can be put to the task of reshaping memory and burying histories.
Author: Anthony Lewis
Release Date: 2010-09
More than any other people on earth, we Americans are free to say and write what we think. The press can air the secrets of government, the corporate boardroom, or the bedroom with little fear of punishment or penalty. This extraordinary freedom results not from America's culture of tolerance, but from fourteen words in the constitution: the free expression clauses of the First Amendment. In Freedom for the Thought That We Hate, two-time Pulitzer Prize-winner Anthony Lewis describes how our free-speech rights were created in five distinct areas - political speech, artistic expression, libel, commercial speech, and unusual forms of expression such as T-shirts and campaign spending. It is a story of hard choices, heroic judges, and the fascinating and eccentric defendants who forced the legal system to come face to face with one of America's great founding ideas.
Author: United Nations Development Programme (India)
Release Date: 2008
Corruption is increasingly being challenged as unacceptable across Asia and the Pacific: widespread malfeasance corrodes health care, education and public utilities. This report shows how people are negatively affected by corruption, focusing on why it hurts the poor the most and what can be done. It also spotlights the successes so far,and proposes additional solutions.--Publisher's description.
No one sees the world quite like John Gimlette. As The New York Times once noted, “he writes with enormous wit, indignation, and a heightened sense of the absurd.” Writing for both the adventurer and the armchair traveler, he has an eye for unusually telling detail, a sense of wonder, and compelling curiosity for the inside story. This time, he travels to Sri Lanka, a country only now emerging from twenty-six years of civil war. Delving deep into the nation’s story, Gimlette provides us with an astonishing, multifaceted portrait of the island today. His travels reveal the country as never before. Beginning in the exuberant capital, Colombo (“a hint of anarchy everywhere”), he ventures out in all directions: to the dry zones where the island’s 5,800 wild elephants congregate around ancient reservoirs; through cinnamon country with its Portuguese forts; to the “Bible Belt” of Buddhism—the tsunami-ravaged southeast coast; then up into the great green highlands (“the garden in the sky”) and Kandy, the country’s eccentric, aristocratic Shangri-la. Along the way, a wild and often desperate history takes shape, a tale of great colonies (Arab, Portuguese, British, and Dutch) and of the cultural divisions that still divide this society. Before long, we’re in Jaffna and the Vanni, crucibles of the recent conflict. These areas—the hottest, driest, and least hospitable—have been utterly devastated by war and are only now struggling to their feet. But this is also a story of friendship and remarkable encounters. In the course of his journey, Gimlette meets farmers, war heroes, ancient tribesmen, world-class cricketers, terrorists, a former president, old planters, survivors of great massacres—and perhaps some of their perpetrators. That’s to say nothing of the island’s beguiling fauna: elephants, crocodiles, snakes, storks, and the greatest concentration of leopards on Earth. Here is a land of extravagant beauty and profound devastation, of ingenuity and catastrophe, possessed of both a volatile past and an uncertain future—a place capable of being at once heavenly and hellish—all brought to vibrant, fascinating life here on the page. From the Hardcover edition.