ISSN: 1391 - 0531
Sunday, April 01, 2007
Vol. 41 - No 44
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Wijeya Pariganaka

Political Column
  Defence chief drops bombshell on India
  By Our Political Editor
Most Sri Lankans woke up to the shocking news last Monday morning. By dropping four crude bombs at the main base of the Sri Lanka Air Force at Katunayake, the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) had demonstrated they have now developed an air strike capability no matter whether it was primitive or not.
5th Column
  Playing the Js' game of cricket and politics
  By Rypvanwinkle
"Thaaththa," Bindu Udagedera asked, "are we winning?"
"We thought we were winning until last week..." Percy said.
"Why is that, thaaththa?" Bindu wanted to know.
Situation Report
  Air Tiger thunderbolt jolts nation
  By Iqbal Athas

It was close upon midnight last Sunday when commandos on duty at the Police Special Task Force (STF) detachment in Ganeshapuram, between Vavuniya and Mannar, heard the roar of engines overhead. Though visibility was restricted, they figured out that the noise came from two low flying aircraft with no lights. This aroused suspicion.

The Economic Analysis
  Growing in debt: Are we heading to a debt trap?
  By the Economist

The national debt being higher than GDP is no April Fools’ joke. The mounting public debt is a national concern for the future as well as the present. At Rs. 2537.5 Billion at the end of November last year, the debt is likely to be higher than the 2006 GDP. The public debt has grown by 16 percent in the twelve months since November 2005, when it was Rs. 2183.8 billion.

Thoughts from London
  Take a close inward look before blaming others
  By Neville de Silva
  Blame is the name of the game. Not in the least unusual in Sri Lanka's political landscape, blaming one's political rivals or those who voice a dissenting view are the main targets of official ire. This is a diversionary tactic that is intended to focus public attention on all but the failings of government and its unthinking cohorts.
Issue of the week
  SAARC: Just a bark
  By Ameen Izzadeen
  On April 3 and 4, the South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation, the world's biggest regional grouping, will meet in New Delhi, but for more than 1.6 billion South Asians, it is largely a non-event. Twenty-two years after SAARC was formed and its leaders met for the first time in Dhaka in 1985 with a vow to raise the living standards of teeming millions languishing in abject poverty, the grouping today resembles an abandoned ship in stormy seas.
Focus on Rights
  Protecting a finely poised balance of the media and the law
  By Kishali Pinto Jayawardena

The awesome power wielded by the proper utilization of the law and (in a different but nevertheless equally potent manner) by the media is unparalleled. At times, when both these forces work for the good, the impact on the democratic process can be immense.

  Not published with this week issue.
  By Chandani Kirinde, Our Lobby Correspondent
Inside the glass house
  Saudi statement: the shock and the hook
  By Thalif Deen at the united nations
  NEW YORK - Perhaps one of the legendary anecdotes of slick craftiness relates to a Jewish merchant who keeps praying to God he should win the multi-million dollar weekly lottery in New York. As he implores before God every night, he complains that his friends, his neighbours and even his business associates have kept winning prize money that has evaded him.
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