Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Rattlesnakes and the Foreign Ministry

Rattlesnakes are crawling all over the place waiting for a chance to take a bite at the Foreign Minister. These venomous reptiles are not found only in Colombo but also overseas.

Recently they snapped at Dayan Jayatillake in the hope that it would spur President Rajapaksa to recall him, for having done his duty by the country. Their attack on Dayan was given prominence in the media but to no avail.

It must be admitted that if Dayan had overstepped his mark, he should have been warned and told to correct himself instead of Circulars being sent out to all Ambassadors representing the country ordering them to keep their traps shut.

Sri Lanka’s biggest problem so far has been that most of its Ambassadors have been doing just that except at cocktail parties thrown by other Embassies where their tongues get loosened after partaking of the goodies laid out.

Mr. Minister, in one circular, your office tells the country’s Ambassadors to take immediate steps to respond to the LTTE’s propaganda and contradict their position. But this has been followed by another circular ordering the Ambassadors to shut their traps and obtain Your Secretary’s clearance to open their mouths. This is just what the LTTE has been trying to achieve.

I wonder how Ambassadors like Dayan can immediately react to anti- Sri Lanka propaganda while keeping his trap shut.

I would therefore advise you Mr. Foreign Minister to ensure that circulars sent out by your Ministry do not contradict each other, for the blame will fall on you and the rattlesnakes will get the opening they have been eagerly looking for and not even a snake stone could save you.

Talking of rattlesnakes trying to bite you and the others, the latest victim is Pamela Deen. She is a Sinhala Buddhist, I am told, but the rattlesnakes in the Sri Lankan Embassy in Holland are leaking stories about her treatment of servants. Surely, the employment of a domestic servant and paying her has nothing to do with the government’s foreign policy. As far we are concerned she is trying to nullify the wrong attitude taken by the government of the Netherlands towards Sri Lanka. But now, she has another mission to think about and that is to ward off the attacks of the rattlesnake deputies in her own Embassy. One of the stories planted by these rattle snakes is that she is trying to buy a Benz car. A photograph of the car is also displayed. What the Sinhala readers do not know is that, whether it be a Benz or a Bentley, after five or six years there is no second hand value for such limousines in the West.

The reason being that the price of such cars plummet, insurance goes up and a repair would cost more than the actual value of the car. During the time of Lakshman Kadirgamar, it was decided that after five or seven years a new car should be purchased. It is not Pamela Deen but the Foreign Ministry which is buying this car. But a rattlesnake deputy, who is aiming at becoming the Ambassador, is leaking untruths to the media. I fully endorse the fact that if she has failed in her duties as Ambassador, she must be exposed. We are keeping a close watch on these missions. But not when she has a problem with her domestic or tries to buy a car which has been approved for by the Treasury.

The story to be learnt from these leaks is that the Foreign Ministry is full of rattlesnakes who get together to make life miserable for anybody who is not a Foreign Ministry appointee. But when an Embassy has no Ambassador, they conspire against each other and become so ferocious that they are capable of killing each other. Naturally Mr. Minster you are in pit full of rattlesnakes. Is not this the ideal situation for the LTTE? Instead of fighting the LTTE, the Foreign Ministry is involved in fighting against those they believe are political appointees and on the other hand fighting amongst themselves. Just what the LTTE wants.