the tsunami devastated Sri Lanka more than 3.5 years ago. it’s traces can still be seen in the faces of the people. that man to the right, probably 15 years younger than me, lives and works next to the place he lost his family, barely 50m away from the shoreline. conversation was difficult, so he silently offered me a glass of tea and we stood there closemouthed in a place where i was already short after tsunami, covered in the smell of decaying corpses under collapsed houses.
the west and south of sri lanka got rebuilt pretty fast and well, as this is where the singhalese majority leaves. the east with the muslims and tamils was always neglected and still is. or could you imagine a city of 100.000+ inhabitants not having a single loader and truck? hospitals not sporting a toilet for the men’s ward? and still a number of tsunami affected families live in temporary shelters. as do the sometimes 180.000+ internally displaced persons (an excellent euphemism for war refugees) alone in this region. those war refugees get no compensation, in the camps they wait to be allowed returning to the shattered remainders of their villages after one or the other army was there. and racism shows its ugly face everywhere, making tamils fight muslims, tamils kill tamils, singalese fight tamils without end.