Treating any politician as a near-deity, and giving him or her absolute power, is a dangerous course, says Savi Hensman. In concentrating power in his own hands, President Mahinda Rajapaksa resembles the ruthless Tamil Tiger leader Velupillai Prabhakaran.
In Sri Lanka in recent decades, the term "traitor" has been flung about with wild abandon, says Savi Hensman, raising questions about what loyalty people might owe to a nation and what this might mean in practice.
The war in Sri Lanka is over, say the headlines. Savitri Hensman, a native of the troubled land who now lives in Britain, offers a more complex account of the continuing struggle for peace with justice.
Civilians are bearing the brunt of violence as fighting rages in Sri Lanka between the military and the Tamil Tigers (LTTE), church and civilian humanitarian agencies report. Long-term solutions are vitally needed.