By Surendra Ajit Rupasinghe –
A political solution that recognizes the right of self-determination of the Tamil nation cohabiting in the North and East, along with recognition of the national-democratic rights of the Hill Country Tamil and Muslim nationalities and other national minorities and communities, is the first condition to be achieved in the struggle for democracy and freedom. This is due to the fact that, one of the main forms of domination and control exercised by the State and the ruling class is the policy of ‘divide and conquer’ through which the workers and oppressed masses and nationalities are divided, deluded and deceived, and made to fight each other, instead of waging revolutionary class struggle to overthrow the system.
Sri Lanka belongs to all the nations, nationalities and communities that inhabit its borders. It belongs equally to those who toil and sweat in the factories, on the fields and the seas, here and overseas, to all those who contribute with their labor to provide our means of sustenance. It is they that must inherit the earth and enjoy the fruits of human endeavor.
It is the self-seeking policy of Sinhala chauvinism intensified by every ruling government that led to the war , and has led to the prevailing crisis of national integration. It is the policy of State terrorism that bred the politics of counter-terror. Now, we have killed the messenger. We have buried the effect and enthroned the cause. This policy of Sinhala chauvinism has been applied to manipulate the oppressed Sinhala masses to believe that the only way that they can enjoy freedom is to deny the freedom of all others. The only way that they can rise up is by subjugating all other ‘aliens’. They have been deluded to believe that the Tamils are their historic enemy, who must be vanquished, if the pure Aryan Sinhala race, and the pure Theravada Buddhist tradition, and the Land in which this purity is reposted, is to be liberated. The truth is that, as Karl Marx asserted, ‘any nation that oppresses another shall never achieve its own liberation’.
In the name of Sinhala supremacy, the Land, the Dharma and the Sinhala Nation has long since being mortgaged to the World Bank, the IMF, the ADB and all other agencies of International Finance Capital backed by world imperialism. The Land has been opened up to rapacious pillage and plunder by multi-national corporations, in return for fat commissions. Crucial, strategic sectors of the economy have been leased out to India, China and others, while a military agreement has been entered into with the US, where it shall have free access to all the military facilities on land, sea and air. Casinos, brothels and bars have been opened up, along with seven star hotels to attract tourism. The country is to become a paradise for all kinds of robbers, gangsters, drug dealers and perverts. In the name of Sinhala supremacy, the Tamil people have been bombed, terrorized and dislocated and been turned into helpless refugees in their own Land. The fate of the masses-whether Sinhala, Tamil or Muslim, have been endless, poverty, indebtedness, misery and degradation. The Maha Sangha, the supposed guardian of the Dharma, has become a caste-ridden, elite fortress of wealth, privilege and power, lording over the people- in the same manner of all religious institutions. It has remained a deaf, blind and mute observer of this national betrayal. More than that, it has sanctified war against our brothers and sisters in order to please the rulers and preserve their power and privilege.
In the name of the sanctity and supremacy of the Sinhala-Buddhist nation, over a hundred thousand Sinhala youth have been slaughtered. Sinhala youth have been subjected to the most hideous forms of torture. They have been abducted and killed with impunity. The same deal has been dished out to the Tamils, except that the war against the Tamil nation was to deny them their right to exist as a nation. That is why, in order to achieve democracy and freedom, the first condition is to recognize the Tamil people as a nation that has the democratic right to live in peace, with equality, dignity, security, autonomy and freedom. Recognition of the right of self-determination of the Tamil nation is NOT a recipe for separation, but the most solid democratic foundation for building a just and lasting union. Or else, our country will forever remain divided and conquered. On the other hand, the struggle for a democratic political solution will pave the way for building the bridges of solidarity across divided borders, so we may unite as the People of Lanka to liberate our Land and win our freedom.