We have been given assistance throughout the ages by Japan, partly in recognition of the support given in international fora by JR Jayawardene, at times when reparations of the Second World War were being discussed.
Sri Lankans don’t realize they live in a Country more fortunate than Japan, we don’t have earthquakes and floods in the way they do, despite some self-inflicted flooding due to poor management of our Environment and Forests.
Despite this handicap, the Japanese have through discipline, hard work and pride, created an Economy that is the envy of the world.
During our internal conflict they even provided a tireless peace Envoy, Mr Yasushi Akashi, who worked behind the scenes for over 10 years in trying to broker a peace, and we have even forgotten his name in our ungrateful way.
Please don’t forget the enormous contributions they have given us in the way of grants to assist us in all manner of projects. Is it Japan that is assisting in building the new Terminal at Katunayake? Isn’t in Japan that is assisting us in the massive expansion of the Kelani Bridge to connect the Katunaryake Highway with the Port City?
I urge this government, constantly infighting over trivia, which has nothing to do with improving the quality of life of our people, to take time out and at least make a statement of Solidarity with the people of Japan and offer assistance in any means that they wish from us. It is the least we can do for a true friend.
We are always so full our own needs that we forget that Countries that are less fortunate than us have come to our aid in times of need, and we are hopeless at reciprocating. Where is our sense of duty, or generosity at this time of need?
We in Sri Lanka have never faced a calamity in the way that Japan is faced with today. The visuals are simply unbelievable with 5million people being evacuated who may take years to return to their homes. The stoic way the Japanese face these consequences are examples for us too, who complain about every little incident, much of it due to our own poor coordination and planning.
Our inaction in my opinion, is an indication of the “Island Mentality” we continue to maintain, without even realizing we suffer from. It is time we shed it to help another Island that is not fixated with the same Island mentality we seem to be unable to grow out of.