World Affairs







 This is Paradise


The making of diplomutts

Somebody has been ratting on Bogols. One does not have to look too far to see who that somebody is, surely.

Let's put it this way. You don't have to have the brains of Palitha Kohona to know that somebody has been gunning for Bogols for quite some time. The evidence is as clear as daylight, a phrase that is sadly out of date what with the pollution that fills the air turning it into a horrible haze.

The evidence is there in all the stories that have been leaked about the man - from the Ritz Carlton in New York to the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting in Kampala and now to the very heart of the Foreign Ministry.

Ran for cover

Somebody has told that dubious entity called Asian Tribune masquerading as a media (I almost said modaya) outlet of some import, that Bogols is gallivanting while letters of appointment to several people as consuls-general await the Minister's signature.

Seeing the names of some of the prospective consuls-general must have frightened the poor man that he flew away to Singapore to watch an air show.

Now anybody who knows a thing or two about that particular display knows it is for those interested in aviation for civilian and military purposes.

What the Foreign Minister was doing at a Singapore air show might passeth the understanding of some. But I, Pachoris is not put off by the sniggers and back-biting of those who are trying to desecrate the image of Bogols as he did to the memory of Lakshman Kadirgamar by despatching the late foreign minister's statue to the darkest corners of Vihara Maha Devi Park.

I Pachoris can say with hand on heart that there was a very good reason - well at least two - why our Foreign Minister was in Singapore for the air show.

The fact that he met his Singaporean counterpart during that time is like saying that his Ministry Secretary Palitha Kohona met some Aussies from the great outback during a visit to Australia recently, making it easy to label it a semi-official visit, thus saving on expenses.

Tailoring tips

Perhaps meeting his counterpart was purely to inquire about the best tailor in town so that Bogols could add a suit or two to his collection.

The primary reason why Bogols took off in what seemed like an 'undue hurry' to the air show is because even he seemed to think that some appointments stank. Is it surprising that so many ended up with angina and neuralgia at the same time on hearing that a journalist of little distinction and less intellect was to be made consul-general in Toronto.

If the government wants to insult the Canadians for taking time over banning the LTTE, it is one thing. But to send this chap into the midst of the Canadians does remind one of an old Roman tale when Caligula appointed his favourite horse as a senator because the chappie thought that the senators around at the time were a rotten lot.

Actually I had not thought of the analogy until that veteran diplomat now retired, Felix Katepittu reminded us all of it at the Paradise Club one evening.

An insult

That's as maybe, as some fictional character used to say constantly. At least Caligula chose his favourite horse who had had the honour of being presented to foreign diplomats now and then and so had a nodding (and I use that word advisedly) acquaintance with diplomats if not diplomacy.

I would be hard put to think that this Jayasekera lad is the favourite journalist unless the powers-that-be who have no great love for the fourth estate having ruined all the other estates, intend the appointment to be an insult to all journalists.

While the Scarborough district of Toronto waits with bated breath as they say for the arrival of this distinguished journalist who was extinguished from the Daily News with the arrival of another Bandula to the helm of Beira Gedera, Bogols is keeping the chap waiting with his aerobatics in the Lion City.

If the Minister's real intention was to get as far away as possible without heaping more intellectual garbage onto our diplomatic service, then he shouldn't have stopped in Singapore. He should have taken the polar route to the Arctic where the snows are melting faster than the budgetary allocations to the Foreign Ministry.

That is not surprising seeing that the ministry duo Rohitha and Palitha in tandem are in hot pursuit of a Guinness record for accumulating the most airlines in the shortest possible time.

Since the pair graced (did I hear Katepittu say disgraced?) the Foreign Ministry they have jointly accumulated more air miles than Mahela Jayawardene and Kumar Sangakkara have together piled on runs.

To buy a plane

There is one other difference though. Neither of the two respected cricketers will deliberately run the other out which, from what we hear, is not the way things happen at that Ministry.

It is also being said that Bogols went to the air show for yet another reason. Now I cannot vouch for this but as one who believes in the freedom of expression and the public's right to know, I Pachoris, states here and now that it is being rumoured that Bogols was looking at an aircraft to buy so that the Ministry could save money by flying Rohitha and Palitha wherever they want at a lower cost.

I dismiss that explanation with the scant attention it deserves for this reason.

Then the Ministry would have to buy two aircraft. Because when Rohitha heads off in one direction, Palitha takes off in another.

We have Rohitha and Palitha. But where's the honda hitha?   

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