March 29, 2007

The Secret Life of Ram Manikkalingam

The Secret Life of Ram Manikkalingam

Abbas Raza is one of the masterminds behind 3 Quarks Daily, one of our daily reads. Chris wrote to him after last night’s show, both to thank him for plugging the show and for leading us to Ram Manikkalingam. Here’s Abbas’s (pretty incredible) response.

Dear Chris,

Ram in person is most of all a very funny guy with a very unique and edgy sort of humor. A couple of years ago I was with him in Helsinki having lunch with the ex-President of Finland, Marti Ahtisaari (who has been the front runner for the Peace Nobel for a couple of years but hasn’t won), when he turned to the President and said, “I am a little more respectable, but Abbas must be the first person to come and meet you who is so poor he is staying in a youth hostel!” We had a laugh and then I punched him hard later… (It was true!)

On a more serious note, Ram endured great personal danger in taking the job as Presidential Advisor in Sri Lanka some years ago. Both Tamil and Sinhala extremists condemned his politics. But he never wavered in his commitment to the peace process, and stayed at his job (despite entreaties from me and all his friends to leave and come to the US) until the end of the President’s term.

Your program was really very interesting and Dalrymple is not only a true scholar but such a decent guy too!

Yours ever,


Abbas Raza, in an email to Open Source, March 29, 2007

Related Content