Sri Lanka attempts to talk about joy instead of death

I reported in February the Galle Literary Festival in Sri Lanka and its apparent attempt to white-wash or ignore completely the brutal civil war then taking place in the country.

Now, as the government continues to imprison hundreds of thousands of Tamils, those wily cultural ambassadors are back at it:

Sri Lanka will host the second Galle Film Festival from December 2-6 in the eponymous host town.
GFF is presented in association with the National Film Corporation of Sri Lanka and Sri Lanka Tourism and will open with Sri Lankan director Vimukthi Jayasundera’s “Ahasin Wetei,” which was in competition at this year’s Venice Film Festival. GFF is a non-competitive festival and hence won’t include a jury.
In addition to promoting tourism and film opportunites in the country, GFF’s main focus will be on Sri Lankan and South Asian cinema with participating films including, among others, India’s “Firaaq” from actress and director Nandita Das. Further programming details are being finalized.
As part of its schedule of fundraisers, event galas and workshops, GFF will include “Shooting For Change” which will include documentaries designed to inspire social change. Also featured will be eight short films produced in August during a 10-day film camp for children, hosted by the U.S. Embassy in Sri Lanka and run by American acting coach Constance Tillotsonm with Sri Lankan directors Anoma Rajakaruna and Kasinathar Gnanadas. The 40 participating children came from post-war Sri Lanka’s different ethnic backgrounds.

Sri Lanka will host the second Galle Film Festival from December 2-6 in the eponymous host town.

GFF is presented in association with the National Film Corporation of Sri Lanka and Sri Lanka Tourism and will open with Sri Lankan director Vimukthi Jayasundera’s “Ahasin Wetei,” which was in competition at this year’s Venice Film Festival. GFF is a non-competitive festival and hence won’t include a jury.

In addition to promoting tourism and film opportunites in the country, GFF’s main focus will be on Sri Lankan and South Asian cinema with participating films including, among others, India’s “Firaaq” from actress and director Nandita Das. Further programming details are being finalized.

As part of its schedule of fundraisers, event galas and workshops, GFF will include “Shooting For Change” which will include documentaries designed to inspire social change. Also featured will be eight short films produced in August during a 10-day film camp for children, hosted by the U.S. Embassy in Sri Lanka and run by American acting coach Constance Tillotsonm with Sri Lankan directors Anoma Rajakaruna and Kasinathar Gnanadas. The 40 participating children came from post-war Sri Lanka’s different ethnic backgrounds.

This is highly suspicious. Like Israel, Sri Lanka wants to be seen as a normal country that runs film festivals and literary events, while the world forgets its blatant crimes.

We will not.