26 February, 2020

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Let’s Leave Dichotomies & Dreams To Find A Decent, Democratic Answer

By Kusal Perera

Kusal Perera

Last evening (28 March) a mail in my “Inbox” from CT said. “Three replies to you.” I went through all of them, beginning with Pon Chandran‘s and Dr. Paul Newman‘s second response, both Tamil activists from India and then SL Tamil Diaspora leader, Ms. Usha S. Sri Skanda-Rajah‘s very aggressive reply. The two Indian friends, Chandran in particular says, the human rights fraternity in India, especially the People’s Union for Civil Liberties (PUCL) acknowledge and express their profound gratitude and respect to me, the “hypocrite” and the “cynic” in Ms. Sri Skanda-Rajah’s reply,who would have to “eat his own words”. The only “sin” I committed was to argue how the SL Tamil conflict could be finally solved, or at least attempted to be solved.

Solving the “conflict” that is not just “post war”, but is “post LTTE” too, is actually the issue with most of them who desist accepting the ground reality in SL. They can not and they do not want to accept that “post LTTE” SL has no political space for a “Thamil Eelam”. I don’t blame these groups for their inability and reluctance to understand that truth, but I do blame these Diaspora groups for dragging the Tamil people in exile with an elusive “Eelam” for another 20 years or more to come. Over 30 years ago Prabhakaran promised them an “Eelam” and made them fund that “dream” for over 20 years to the tune of over 100 million dollars a year. He then helped bathe that “dream” in innocent blood, most unnecessarily. President Rajapaksa was the choice of Prabhakaran, over UNP candidate Wickramasinghe at the 2005 November presidential elections. They termed Wickramasinghe “a cunning fox” who tried to weave an international net to curb the LTTE during the 2002 CFA. LTTE therefore called on the Tamil people to boycott elections knowing very well, that could make Rajapaksa the next President.

Having allowed Rajapaksa to ascend the presidency, a week later on 27 November, 2005, Prabhakaran told the Tamil people, in his annual policy statement made as the “Mahavir Day” speech, since Rajapaksa is considered a “pragmatic leader” he would give one year for Rajapaksa to come up with a reasonable solution. He said from his Mullaitivu hide out,“Our people have lost patience, hope and reached the brink of utter frustration. They are not prepared to be tolerant any longer. The new government should come forward soon with a reasonable political framework that will satisfy the political aspirations of the Tamil people.” He made it sound “an urgent final appeal” and promised the Tamil people, if such offer is rejected, the LTTE “will, next year, intensify the struggle for self-determination, to establish self-government in a [Tamil] homeland.

It was such stupidly arrogant pronouncements that made the Tamil people in exile fund his promise of “Eelam” in millions of hard earned dollars that left a still unbelievable human tragedy on our soil. That human tragedy could have still been avoided IF only, Prabhakaran accepted his “Eelam” project was defeated and over, when he decided to abandon Kilinochchi on 02 January, 2009 without a single shell fired. IF he actually wanted to avoid a human catastrophe in Vanni, he should have allowed the civilians to leave the conflict zone and fought his own battle to death, in Nandikadal or where ever he chose to. He proved he was not interested in civilian life. Prabhakaran therefore is as responsible as Rajapaksa is, for all the brutal deaths, for all the missing numbers, for all the displacements, for all the widows, for all the children who have lost their fathers, for all sons and daughters Tamil mothers had lost, my Tamil Nadu friends and the Diaspora groups keep saying it is “genocide”.

That said about “genocide” and Prabhakaran’s complicity in mass murder during the last phase of the war, Chandran’s response titled, “The Cat Is Out Of The Bag”, a title that for me has no relevance to what I have argued before, would still be valid I thought, as the caption to Paul’s second reply. He has now very clearly accepted, TN Tamil activism is not in “solidarity” with SL Tamils, but is a “stakeholder in Tamil struggle”. That changes the TN contours of the SL Tamil conflict completely and in a bizarre manner. A Tamil “stakeholder in India” who would not want a “Tamil Eelam” for them in India, but instead demands one for SL Tamils in N-E SL.

Their argument is not based on any political reasoning, but in arguing that they have an ancestral right to intervene on behalf of SL Tamil people. An ancestral right, TN did not want to enjoy on behalf of their own Indian origin Tamils who were brought here by the British colonial masters as bonded labour in late 19th Century, were disfranchised and turned “Stateless” for almost 03 decades after independence. Everything else, facts and fiction in Paul’s article comes after “usurping of the right to intervene” in SL. That according to what Paul argues, is the right of the TN youth as “brothers and sisters” who are part of the struggle in establishing a separate “Eelam State” for the Tamils in North – East Sri Lanka. Funniest implication is, Paul thinks the TN youth can decide a “separate Eelam State” and the Tamil people living here in SL, have no option, but to accept that decision.

This call for a separate “Eelam” in N-E SL is popularly argued by all TN activists and the likes of Ms. Sri Skanda-Rajah in the Diaspora, on “historical” assumptions. They say the Tamil kingdom was annexed by the British in creating a unitary State in Ceylon. In the ancient feudal world, there were no permanent kingdoms. Kings and warlords, went about annexing territory and where they lost the war, they lost their territory too. That was how the great Persian empire was established on land that extended from Greece to Punjab, after young Alexander the Great crossed the Khyber Pass. That was how Genghis Khan established the Mongolian empire from Tashkent to the East coast of China. Old feudal India too had many kingdoms scattered across its map in contrast to the present one. South India, once under great Chola kings was not part of North Indian Moghul empire. Would any one therefore advocate bifurcating present India to match its old kingdoms ? Its stupid now to talk of all those independent kingdoms and ancestral links in this modern world, where “capital”, “labour” and “information” have no geographical boundaries. So is “military intelligence”.

Also, it beats my poor intellect to understand Paul when he says, I am “insulting the intellect and democratic fervor of the Tamils of Tamilnadu” and adds that I “must remember that time and again the whole Tamilnadu assembly which represents a total of 46 million voters has passed resolutions against MR and Sri Lanka.” Is there a better democratic way than this? he asks. First it is not me who is insulting the “intellect and democratic fervour of the Tamils in Tamil Nadu”, but they themselves. What democracy is there and what intellect, when ordinary civilians are physically attacked and insulted with video cameras on the roll, simply because they are Sri Lankans ? When properties are stoned and damaged as protests, because they are occupied by Sri Lankan agencies ? When BCCI has to say they would “ensure the safety and security” of SL cricketers playing in their IPL ? When heads of States have to exchange diplomatic communications in assuring no more vulgar attacks would be allowed over and over again ?

It is easy and comfortable for Chandran to write in his re-joinder to CT that as human rights activists they, “unequivocally condemn the attack on the Buddhist monks in Tamil Nadu, which cannot be condoned whatever may be the provocation.” But where in TN was this condemned and by whom ? Has TN CM condemned these uncivilised acts ? Have MK as DMK boss condemned ? Or even Vaiko or Seeman ? That’s what democracy and intellect is about in TN agitations and protests and I don’t have to add any more insults to them.

Again, I pity Paul for making himself the “J” of the deck of TN cards with his argument, the TN State assembly that represents 46 million voters, passing resolutions against Rajapaksa has to be accepted as endorsed by the whole of TN and he says there is no better democracy than that. Well yes, the system is accepted as a “democratic procedure”. So is the parliament in SL that technically represents the 20 million SL population that includes Tamil and Muslim minorities as well and passes the “impeachment against the 43rd Chief Justice” in removing her from that position to install a high powered stooge. And there can not be a better democracy than that for Paul.

In passing let me also note that I am surprised how a person like Chandran could go about making irresponsible accusations, just to make his arguments look sound. I do agree, Secretary to the Ministry of Defence, Gotabhaya Rajapaksa is a major “Sinhala troublemaker” accused of sponsoring even the latest “anti Muslim” Buddhist outfit, the “BBS”. Given his crucial role in all pre and post war accusations, I would not attribute mischievous quotes like, “Gotabaya had admitted publicly that the Tamil North has been converted into ‘Free Fire Zone’. He has also gone record proclaiming that let Sinhala army throw the Tamils in the Ocean and enjoy the Tamil women”. I did not know, Chandran could compete with “Mad Max”. Chandran should tell from where those quotes were plucked out from. He is simply not alone in making such stupidly scandalous stories and that no doubt, is how the “ignorant” students in TN have been provoked !

Coming back to Ms. Sri Skanda-Rajah’s argument of a referendum and separation, she also argues, it is they in the Tamil Diaspora who should decide the future of the Tamil people living in SL. She sounds thrilled with Jeyalalithaa passing a resolution in the TN State assembly that says the Tamil Diaspora too should vote at a referendum on separation. Ms. Sri Skanda-Rajah thinks, the Diaspora becomes a legitimate stakeholder in deciding the future of Tamil people, when JJ says they should vote. First, Ms. Sri Skanda-Rajah fails to understand that the Indian government can not under any context and circumstance, allow any third party intervention and worst, a UN Resolution for separation in SL. That would make the Indian government accept a third party intervention on Jammu and Kashmir, a position India has stubbornly refused to accept. And before I could even finish writing this, the Indian Minister of External Affairs publicly trashed JJ’s resolution. He simply said, “No”.

Secondly, Ms. Sri Skanda-Rajah does not know the Tamil Diaspora and her own TGTE, though mentioned by Jeyalalitha, would never be a political entity with recognition in international power blocs. The TGTE is only an extension of KP’s (Kumaran Pathmanathan‘s) idea of a peaceful, non violent campaign in achieving “Eelam” that he mentioned, immediately after assuming leadership of the LTTE, when he accepted Prabhakaran was killed in battle. His arrest in KL, Malaysia and extradition to Colombo, still has many stories making rounds, Nediyavan accused of tipping the Colombo regime of KP’s where about and Rudrakumaran coming into lead the pro KP group, as the TGTE. What ever they may be, what is more important is that, the TGTE was not projected as what it is now, with a PM, cabinet of ministers, a Senate and all that goes to make it a government in exile. Initial projection was to have it very loose and more like a NGO, registered with the blessings of a liberal democracy, where it would be located. In over a year, it assumes the right to represent “Eelam Thamils” but no SL Tamil living in SL would ever want such a “transitional government”. The best is, their usurping of the right to represent the Tamils living in SL, is totally rejected by young Tamils in the North, who now try to get involved in numerous social activities. Quoting such source through an e-mail interview, the ICG Report No. 186 – “The Sri Lankan Tamil Diaspora After The LTTE” has this denunciation of the Diaspora’s claim for a separate Tamil State. “Let these people come tell the Vanni IDPs that they are speaking on their behalf for a separate state. They will be physically assaulted for sure.”

Let me also ask, what moral right does the TGTE have in trespassing on the right of the Tamil people in SL making their own political decisions ? A lot more than half the Tamil Diaspora including almost all in TGTE, GTF, the BTF, etc., are no more Sri Lankan, except in their origin. Over the past decades, they have pledged their allegiance to Constitutions of Canada, the UK, the USA, Australia, France, Switzerland and such countries as citizens of those “liberal democracies”. Others are those who have so far failed to obtain citizenship in those countries. Yet they are called the SL Tamil Diaspora and wish to live another decade or more, dreaming of a “Thamil Eelam” that still seem to generate plenty of money for those who keep the promise going.

The most common answer to all these is that within SL, the Tamil people can not speak their mind. Not even the politicians, the elected representatives. That’s what TN activists and the Diaspora say. But the fact is, Tamil politicians don’t agree with and accept what the Diaspora says and remain silent. They instead openly refuse to accept the diktats of the Diaspora. “The Diaspora can suggest things to us. We will consult with them. But they cannot make decisions on their own and enforce it on people here. That is unacceptable” was what TNA leader Sampanthan told in Nallur on 23 January 2010, addressing a presidential election rally.

Before I conclude, let me also make a brief note on how bad the reading of the 1976 Vadukkodai Resolution is, among the Tamil Diaspora and those in TN. The first TULF Convention in Vadukkodai adopted the resolution for a separate Tamil State with the CWC a constituent party of the TULF and late Saumyamoorthy Thondaman as one of its Vice Presidents, disagreeing with separation. Therefore the Resolution was re drafted to include the phrase, “…….And, while taking note of the reservations in relation to its commitment to the setting up of a separated state of Tamil Eelam expressed by the Ceylon Workers Congress as a Trade Union of the Plantation Workers, the majority of whom live and work outside the Northern and Eastern areas,….” With the adoption of the resolution, the CWC left the TULF.

The other most important development was that the TULF leadership, was not convinced the socio political situation had matured enough to carry through the resolution to its conclusion, although in the following year, the TULF contested the 1977 parliamentary elections on the basis of the resolution adopted and was voted to be the largest opposition party in parliament. Therefore in 1981, the TULF laid the Vadukkodai decision aside, to accept District Development Councils (DDC). That became a total disaster with President Jayawardne thinking he could have the TULF to run on his agenda. Meanwhile armed groups trained and funded by India, took over Tamil politics, competing against each other for dominance. They were all being manipulated by the RAW from New Delhi.

Thimpu discussions in July – August 1985 was thus an outcome of Indian intervention, where once again, the Vadukkodai Resolution was not taken as the basis. That resolution left out any possibility of negotiations. All armed Tamil groups, 05 in number and the TULF together in Thimpu laid the basis for any future negotiations on what is still called the “Thimpu Declaration” on 04 principled positions. They were (i) recognition of Tamils as a nation (ii) acceptance of North – East together as the Tamil homeland (iii) the right of self determination and the fourth, which is no more valid, as all Indian origin Tamils have been granted their citizenship and voting rights back. All negotiations thereafter between the GoSL and the LTTE was also based on Thimpu principles. So was the Indo-SL Accord of July 1987 and the Oslo Declaration signed by the LTTE in 2002 December. The Vadukkodai resolution was thus history.

All that said, I wish to ask all who want to resurrect the Vadukkodai Resolution, how many more decades would it take for the Tamils and the TGTE with their brethren in Tamil Nadu to achieve their aspirations of an independent Eelam ? The strategy for now as Ms. Sri Skanda-Rajah says, “strategy should center on how we are going to widen the distance between powerful global players and our enemy the Sinhala government, and how we are going to develop our relationship with these global powers.” The ICG Report No. 186 – “The Sri Lankan Tamil Diaspora After The LTTE” quotes a Tamil academic to the effect that, “….once again TGTE founders increasingly see the endeavour as a long-term political project, achieving its ultimate goal (separation) within 30-60 years.” [page 12].

Does it mean the Tamil people who miraculously survived the most savage war waged since the armed conflict began, those who still manage to exist with untold misery has to wait that long till the TGTE brings them a separate Eelam and those in exile also have to keep funding the Eelam dream, that long ?

My proposition does not take that long to find a permanent answer. All what it needs, is to re align all efforts, all funds and all human resources that the Tamil Diaspora is betting on a 30 year project and the TN activism, in demanding the Indian government and this Rajapaksa regime to implement the APRC Final Report, Ms. Sri Skanda-Rajah conveniently drops saying it is “only a pdf document” by two members. That build up forces for a decent, democratic answer with pressure on India and Colombo would not keep the post war decimated Tamil society waiting for the second “Eelam” promise to come round with a totally new world order that would accept such separation. I for one, would not ask for these Tamil people to keep hanging on to a promise that even Prabhakaran failed to deliver and instead left them without houses, without land, without proper income and most of all, without justice to their loved ones gone missing and dead. Ain’t that too much to ask from them ?

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    “……. Prabhakaran therefore is as responsible as Rajapaksa is, for all the brutal deaths, for all the missing numbers, for all the displacements, for all the widows, for all the children who have lost their fathers, for all sons and daughters Tamil mothers had lost”

    No! Writer, whoever you are, dont try to apportion blame to Rajapaksha.

    Prabhakaran was the root cause, he started the war the day he killed the mayor of Jaffna. The remainder is just the escalation of war by Prabhakaran, the building up of his terror empire, and misleading the Tamil citizens of Sri Lanka, having got them in his cluth. Rajapaksha simply reacted to Prabhakaran’s scorched earth policy of destroying everything that got in his way; if he could not have them or win them over, he destroyed all that got in the way, from people to ants.

    As the leader of legitimate government, it was Rajapaksha’s responsibility and duty to rescue the country and its citizens from a terrorist outfit. That, he did with immense courage, political decisiveness and unswerving loyalty to its citizens, displaying qualities of a leader of the same as those displayed by Winston Churchill. We have not seen such leadership and decisiveness in this country for almost 1,000 years. All the recent political leaders that we can think of were rubbish compared to this man. Rajapaksha must be applauded for what he did for this nation.

    Rajapaksha was not responsible at all for those civilian deaths at Nandikadal, it was solely the rsponsibility of Prabhakaran. He alone set up the guns amongst the civilians and fired from there, he alone kept the civilian families as his shield for his villanous activities, and he alone abandoned them and ran away through the backdoor, leaving even his own children and wife behind to get caught in cross fire between terrorists and the SLA.

    Now, compare that with what happened in the WWII in Dresden. It was destroyed by allies, the very people of the West who make a song and dance about HR, deliberately and wickedly to teach Hitler a lesson. Hitler did not even have his big guns and V2 bases in Dresden, and allies could not even use such a reason to bomb Dresden. Dresden was a civilian city, well known for its arts and culture. It was destroyed so that civilians would die, and so that death of civilians would be a lesson, i.e. to teach Hitler a lesson that he would not forget.

    In contrast, Nandikadal was a fortress controlled by Prabhakaran using civilians as the wall. Rajapaksha, mercifully, requested Parbhakaran to release the civilians in three separate occasions and observed ceasefire lasting several days each time, to give Prabhakaran time to release his captives. During these occasiona, the vast majority of fearful citizens cursed the President for giving Prabhakaran the lull from fighting to reinforce his forces. But the President held on to his word. The terrorist leader neither released the civilians nor laid down their arms. These were the facts that the world witnessed, and not what the writer just trying fabricate after the event.

    Prabhakaran was not a baby. He was the most ruthless and cruel terrorist leader that ever existed in our life time, and from what we read in history. The legacy of what Prabhakaran left behind in techniques of terrorist war-fare on civilans, still remain and in full swing still in Iraq, Afghanistan, Syria, India, Pakistan and other places in Middle East. The world is haunted by the memories of ruthless suicide bombers and the devastation that they cause.

    I say, good riddance Prabhakaran, and the average Tamil people I guess are overjoyed by his death, even though the handful of regular bloggers here might not.

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      Prabhakan was not the root cause.he was the effect of the cause.

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        There is often one rotten apple in a barrel, genetically diseased, and which cannot cope. P-was it. See where he took himself and other associates? To a hellish ending. Rotten apples end up in garbage, it is the natural ending.

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      Mahasohon:

      I think it is fair game between two adversaries – The SL regime and the LTTE (Prabhakaran) but when you murder civilians disproportionately during a war or in combat, and if this proven then you can be implicated for war crimes. Unfortunately, it doesn’t work the way you think. Why do you think the regime is denying the murder of civilians? If the Rajapakses tell the way you do, that is Prabhakaran is responsible for all those deaths due to govt shelling, then they have to look for the ropes to hang themselves. Fortunately for them, you are not their advisor.

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        jansee,

        Please re-read;

        “That human tragedy could have still been avoided IF only, Prabhakaran accepted his “Eelam” project was defeated and over, when he decided to abandon Kilinochchi on 02 January, 2009 without a single shell fired. IF he actually wanted to avoid a human catastrophe in Vanni, he should have allowed the civilians to leave the conflict zone and fought his own battle to death, in Nandikadal or where ever he chose to. He proved he was not interested in civilian life. Prabhakaran therefore is as responsible as Rajapaksa is, for all the brutal deaths, for all the missing numbers, for all the displacements, for all the widows, for all the children who have lost their fathers, for all sons and daughters Tamil mothers had lost, my Tamil Nadu friends and the Diaspora groups keep saying it is “genocide”.”

        Prabakan was given hope by the West & the diaspora that he and his murderous cohorts would be somehow saved if he keeps on fighting the lost war IRRESPECTIVE OF THE HUMAN COST. Therefore I would venture beyond Kusal Perera and say that this woman Usha is equally responsible for the mass deaths.

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          Hela:

          You are precisely stating my point. Let me wash your brains a bit. Prabhakaran was told to release the civilians. It is common knowledge that he defied that advice. He refused to allow the civilians to go. Are you with me so far? In other words, the civilians were held by him and the LTTE against their will. Do you still follow? Then the SL regime announced that it will embark on a HUMANITARIAN operation to save those civilians held by the LTTE against their will. But instead of saving them from the grips of the LTTE they shelled and bombed indiscriminately without regard to human lives that had caused the deaths by the thousands. So, what was taunted as a humanitarian operation was not one after all. Instead it was genocide. Have you taken your ostrich head out of the sand now?

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      Very pathetic argument none of which you can substantiated, Re the Nathikaddal massacre in 2009 was part of genocide agenda, telling the UN & WFP that Vanni had only 70,000 while actual figure was 436000. Idea was to starve the people and then pound with ban weapons and heavy weapons. The story of LTTE shooting the civilians, were done by the old LTTE brake way cadres of Karuna’s Men who were send on request into the area to help the army by March 2009 by Gota and Mahinda Rajapaske’s. LTTE having heavy weapons among the people were invented by Army to protect their story, as they used heavy weapons after promising the UN they won’t.
      History really, started in 1948 by Sinhala majoritarian governments having cheated the Tamils for the support to gain Independence, Since then a covert activities on making a Sinhala Buddhist country started. Man who planned was DS.S in 1934 with the sinhala colonisation of the east. However the Buddhist monks took over in 1956 to rule the country by having the politicians on the strings. Just to remind you, the first firearm was used by a Buddhist Monk, that too on the Prime Minster SWRD Bandaranayke who brought Sinhala only in 24 hours. He had only two years of turbulent rule. He tried to rectify his misdeed to Tamils by having BC pact, If only the Monks and few manipulators like JR had not interfered with this he would have lived and the war that ended in2009 would have never taken place. Srilanka would have been prosperous and had dignified respect from other nations. But the fate of the country and Tamils was otherwise.
      Then Mrs Bandaranayake, continued the’ racial hatred’ agenda further and used her armed thugs[police and Army] in Jan 1974 to disturb the International Tamil conference, to beat the delegates. when 10 people died and many hundreds injured at this event. Again in 1977 state terrorism was revisited after the 1958 riots. Was it Mrs B used this weapon again because she lost the election? Or JR manipulated to discredit Mrs B. Any way JR is no saint, he used his thugs including ministers to burn down the Jaffna Library and Jaffna MP’S house. Blaming Prabaharn would be a pathetic argument, while Tamils lost their lives, livelihood, houses and business premises for a period of 30 years when they were only pleading for their fundamental birth rights including sharing in the governance of the country. Tamils lost their sovereignty to Portuguese in 1621. Majoritarian Sinhala polity tricked the British to hander over Tamil peoples sovereignty to them as a whole. you have tried your level best to give a twist version to the factual history, like many others in the country had done as a propaganda message to the outside world. by so called patriots. Tamils are also patriotic people, but you paint a different picture to your people and setting them against the Tamil People. If we were not patriotic we could have prevented the independence from the British in 1948. Sir Ponn Ramanathan need not have gone to Britain to plead for the release of the Sinhala politicians who were in the Jail and waiting to be shot after the 1915 Buddhist – Muslim riots. Have you read Mahinda chinthanaya, he had a genocide agenda which he has executed thinking he is Dutta Gamini, during the war and still continuing to include the Muslim community as well. Clearing for a Mono-Ethnic Buddhist country.

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    Excellent

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    Kusal Perera,

    Thanks. A commendable and factual analysis.

    Dr.Rajasingham Narendran

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    Certainly a new elaam project is a non starter even if it is promoted by TN. Lessons learned is something for all communities. In the modern context race and religon are not sustainable priniples for founding a nation or country. Live and let live is the appropriate foundation.

    The Tamil struggle for emancipation and political and social equality and the Sinhala struggle for social justice had many things in common. But somewhere down the line these movements diverged and have aqquired racial and religous overtones. On analysis the problems facing the two communities are similiar but the politicians seek to divide and rule by race and religon.

    New political thinking on all sides is required to normalise and restore unity between communities for a better tomorrow. The continuing military / political suppression by the Rajapakse regime must end if this is to be achieved.

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    Tamils await the full and early implementation of the LLRC Report.
    This will correct most of the sufferings of the tamils and allow them to emerge as equals.
    But the state wants another five years – as said at the UNHRC meeting,to even implement Human Rights.

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    The writer is hypocritical. He should have written as to what a post-war and not post-LTTE situation. Had MR taken up APRC as a settlement, even TGTE would not have been born.

    Now that the Regime internationalized the issue, what does the diaspora
    do to its community? Just follow what the writer and the Regime plans
    to do? If the issues are not ended, the diaspora will be made more
    forceful, inevitably.

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    Dear Author,

    Whether we are in Earth or in Predator world!

    Srilanka has either India or China Card. Please pardon me if I am wrong. Poor Tamils have nothing.

    Congress/UPA sacrificed its political grounds in Tamilnadu to uplift SLFP/UPFA. Whenever UNP or SLFP is in trouble or faces JVP uprising/gaining momentum, unleashed horror was faced by Tamils.

    President Obama’s speech on 21.04.2009 saved the precious lives of 3,00,000 innocent trapped Tamils. Even a hard heart won’t say only 75,000 people were trapped while on the contrary 3,75,000 people were trapped.

    with warm regards

    b s perumal

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      Dont say this louder, there is Dr. Naren who will say that Obama is also hysterical…

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    Kushal seems to be simply out of mind person, his writing in first two articles and third one has no correlation at all, he simply waves his mind what he thinks without any objectives. can someone summarize what this out of mind correlates.

    And there is one fake intellectual who supports it as wonderful factual analysis.

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      In this article he is replying his critics Pon Chandran, Paul Newman, and Usha Sri Skandaraja.

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    I agree with Kusal Perera. He merely attempted to analyze the current situation and express the best option available. He was not doing so to mould public opinion to be elected to political office, nor as a duty to an organization he works for, nor for journalistic recognition. The Indian journalists are merely vying for popularity and Ms.SS-R is working for her salary.
    Safa put it succintly. We will need to look at a solution without being influenced by race and religion.
    I have often wondered whether the multi-party system is the best for democracy and whether a party-less system is better. Also whether we need to have Provincial Councils at all. Political parties have their own agendas to secure power and their members have to toe the party lines which are often parochial and biased on ethnic/racial and/or religious lines. Due to a party’s common platform individual expression is often suppressed and good governing capabilities are overlooked in favour of vote winning charisma. I may be raising a hornets nest here, but is there a better system that could be developed giving the country an opportunity to elect the best, to elect individuals with independent original thinking, and most of all, loyal to the people who voted for them. When re-election time comes it is the voter who should have the say on whether the candidate has performed well, has been honest, just and fair. That this will result in unfairness due to voting on ethnic lines need to be obviated by devising a mechanism such as proportional representation, an elected Senate or other innovative scheme.
    In the alternative how about installing this system on a Provincial basis with the Provincial representatives becoming the elected MPs of the Parliament in a marriage of both? I am merely thinking aloud but CT bloggers can throw up unique thoughts which can be the precursor to formulating something new. This is not a perfect system. Individuals can band together unofficially, corruption , vote rigging can still occur, but chances are that such instances would be less. The most important would be how the minorities, particularly Tamils, can have justice and equity, in this set up. We do not need a parliamentary opposition do we? Why cannot we have every piece of legislation discussed and voted upon purely on merit. I cannot see it being worse than what it is now.

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    Kusal Perera:

    I have no reason(s) to doubt your sincerity in laying the bare facts across the table, so to speak, but wish to draw your attention to the following:

    Long before Prabhakaran was “born” the Tamils have tried every peaceful means to resolve disputes in an amicable manner. Agreements entered into and promises given by the various regimes were unilaterally dumped, leaving the Tamils in the lurch. It was after all this that Chelva decided that there will never be a peaceful political solution forthcoming from the Sinhala regime.

    It was under these circumstances, pent up frustration and anger on being cheated times and again and the alienation that followed that Tamil youths started taking up arms, much to the consternation of many moderate Tamils but could offer no other alternative viable options. Leaders like JJ were on record to have made statements that the more Tamils lose their lives the more votes he can muster among the Sinhalese, or something to that effect. So, Tamil lives meant political expediency and fodder for the Sinhala politicians and that has remained and I believe will continue to remain so, or even worse, forever.

    The regime resorted to hooliganism and thuggery to subjugate and create a fear psychosis among the Tamil civil population. Peaceful protests, which is part of any vibrant democracy, was violently and bloodily suppressed. Then the regime started resorting to rapes and murders “to teach the Tamils a lesson” in obedience. There was no protection from the state for all these atrocities inflicted on the Tamils. The Sinhala Only Act was passed in 1956 but armed resistance did not start until the late 70s and early eighties.

    For the Tamils, the LTTE was the only option left to defend them. That it may have assumed other forms was largely ignored. Not that Tamils did not notice or realise the excesses of the LTTE or their actions were not in harmony with what they believed. It was simply a case of aligning with the lesser of the two evils. The penchant of the regime to inflict shame through rapes were simply too much to stomach. When none of the perpetrators get implicated, what kind of trust do you expect from the Tamils? Even in the gruesome rape and murder in the Krishanti’s case, it was the insurmountable external pressure that forced the CKB’s govt to bring the culprits before the law. And you should know, though implicated, what happened to the perpetrators? With this trust deficit, there cannot be any doubt that the Tamils have to look elsewhere outside the country for the answer to their problems. I will come to your point shortly that you observe that the answer lies within SL – that is, I am sorry to say, mired in duplicity and appears to me as a hoax. The limitations/constraints you point would be true from your perspective but even Sampanthan and TNA has realised that only pressure from the outside will keep this issue at least alive. While you point out the practicality and viability of what can be achieved within SL, and that only these should be pursued, while ignoring the fact that the history and record of the SL regimes have been to indulge in duplicity to “beat-around-the-bush” just to take everyone on a jolly good ride. The history of commissions, the likes of the APRCs, etc all came to nothing and I wonder what gives you the confidence that any SL regime would consider any of what you think is fair. Isn’t it abundantly clear that the Tamils have been duped yet again and again?

    The promise of fully implementing the 13A, what more with a plus, was floated to win the war, so it appears. Under the pretext of conducting negotiations with the TNA, the Tamils were again take on a pompous ride, and now, after all the jolly ride, taking to a dead end – the PSC – the almost certain death knell. Many of us believed that with the end of the war, there would be a new era of “getting on with the lives” and instead of building on the initiative to move forward, just like previous regimes, this regime, too, was hell bent on only consolidating its power and for that the bogey of the LTTE and terrorism still lives on. You are merely writing philosophy but the reality is something else.

    Given your take on the “genocide” label I will be forthright with you. Telling people to gather in the no-fire zones and then bombing them incessantly appears to mean only one thing – to decimate as many Tamils as possible. Past programmes lent credence to this also. After all, the regime does not consist of toddlers with feed bottles in their mouths – they would have been fully aware of the LTTE moving in there too, even with their firearms. The short of it is that is besides the point for the regime – that it may cost the lives of many civilians didn’t matter at all. All that mattered was this gave an insidious opportunity to the regime to pile up the dead bodies. What the regime embarked on was clearly genocide and it does not matter whether the Americans or even India agrees with that – we will push it and that resolve to take on this regime for these atrocities will never fade. The only fair way to resolve this would be for this to be handled by an international independent investigation team. While many, particularly those aligned to the regime, chose to deride the Darusman and the Petrie reports, both have implicated both the SL regime and the LTTE for atrocities. There can be no sense to ask the regime to investigate itself when it is the party being accused of. Going on with your own accounts on what happened, like how recently Gotabaya talks of a census to proof his figure, would not really wash anymore. The Trincomalee five and the ACF murder cases are still, according to the police and AG’s dept, being investigated and one cannot miss the usual cunning modus of the regime. If the regime has nothing to hide then it should come clean by itself promoting the international probe on accountability so that we all can move forward.

    The citation of the LTTE being trained and nurtured by India is another joke actually. Those who go on citing this conveniently forget how Premadasa not only gave moral support but also arms and protection to the LTTE to fight the IPKF. It is only in the case of those “pundits” that what is good for goose is not good for the gander, as hypocritical always.

    Whatever little the Tamils were able extract from the Sinhala regime was because of the arms they took up. That is abundantly clear. Yes, the Tamils lost everything but in this “lost” is masked by the genocidal behavior of a ruthless regime and this loss of everything was absolutely caused by this regime. The regime’s mask of a humanitarian operation was just a hoax. How the civilians were unceremoniously herded into internment camps and kept under the barrel of the gun had essentially shown that a majority Sinhala regime is hell-bent on trampling on the Tamils. It was done to appease the majority Sinhalese, that a Sinhalese triumph over the Tamils, never mind that they are citizens, too but what matters was to subjugate the Tamils. In more ways than one, Prabhakaran was right, that there can never be any sense expecting the majority Sinhalese to treat the Tamils with equality and dignity. It is not so much as want to just mind our own affairs anymore. It is utterly dubious to expect justice and fairness from a Sinhala majority regime.

    We are in for the long haul. The path and journey you are advocating can be good for coffee talks, because that is what it will be worth. Your advocating as such is not only a slippery slope but just a pipe dream that this regime will ever honour any of its promises. After all, that has been the trend of all the past regimes, too. Even the promises to implement the 13A has been reneged on and no sane Tamil will ever believe that the regime will come clean unless it is dragged through the international mud. It is not going to be easy but the Tamils are left with no other choice. We have to stake the Eelam claim. We understand that this is going to be an arduous journey but we have enough will and resolve to take this forward, with or without the US and India. This is not to trumpet about ideals. The SL regime has to realize that if there is no peace for the Tamils, there is not going to be peace for the Sinhalese either. There will be a lot of surprises for the regime.

    Yes, contrary to what you have mentioned, we dare to dream, just like what Martin Luther King in his infamous ‘DREAM” reiterated.

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      jansee,

      The separatist project fueled by Tamil spremacism was born even long before Sri Lanka gained independance in 1948.

      Sri Lanka saw various phases of it culminating in a violent phase commenced in the early seventies ratified by the Tamil political leadership in the mid seventies at Vadukkodai.

      Continuation with such a project only brings more misery.

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        Hela:

        That you agree of the Tamil aspirations even before independence should enlighten you of the concerns the Tamils had even then. The British had wanted a united front from both the Sinhalese and the minorities, particularly Tamils, before granting independence. Sensing that without the cooperation from the Tamils, there would be no independence, they hoodwinked the Tamils to believe that their rights and interests would be protected. This was, in fact, considered by the Soulboury Commission and imputed into the inaugral constitution to protect the interests of minorities which explicitly provided for that even with a 2/3 majority this cannot be diluted or removed. How the regime cheated the Tamils you can read in the article “You Are Sitting On An Illegal Constitution – You Have No Standing To Lecture Us!By Usha S Sri-Skanda-Rajah in Colombo Telegraph.

        The fear the Tamils had even before independence has been more than justified. The various enactments and policies of the Sinhala regime including the Sinhala Only Act had pushed forward a supremacy mahawamsa mindset. The Tamils rejected these trajectory policies through peaceful means but the Sinhala masses resorted to violence. murder and rapes. Even a rubber-band or a balloon can be stretched only up to a point. The answer to the peaceful approaches was violence, violence and violence. But you seem to wonder why the Tamils had to resort to violence? Isn’t that obvious?

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      Well said ,
      Truth and reality!
      One cannot expect majority to understand it as long as they look this issue with Sinhala supremacy.
      Government regimes elected by the majority set the space for minority to play and these fair journalists discussing the practical possibilities within that space. Even the space we were given is not guaranteed, history shows it has been narrowed by the successive regimes by various amendments and constitutions and ground situations.
      Just say, we concluded this issue through their practical possibilities, there after who is going to guarantee that there will not be any change in it by a forth coming regime, as long as majority can decide the constitution and amendments.
      A practical stable longstanding peace only possible when Tamils have self determination and no one else is going to decide their rights.

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    jansee,

    You are welcome to dream. The problem is your dreams have so far lead to the destruction of Northern Tamil community in Sri Lanka. Further dreaming on the same path as you seem to alluding to, would lead the total anihilation of the Northern Tamil community in SL.

    If you are interested in the long haul, I would like to remind, that, Sinhalese have been fighting for survival & defending themselves for more than 2,000 years now. So long haul is not a problem, until you, Usha, those TN jokers etc see reason (like Kusal. I am pretty sure that Kusal would be against of most what I say. However he sees the reason on this vital issue of Dreelam). I only pray that you realise it sooner than later (and not be fooled by the USA & TN).

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    Hela:

    How come your eloquent boast of the survival and defence for more than 2,000 years has conveniently forgotten how you were whipped into TOTAL submission by the Portuguese, Dutch and then the British. You should revise your history as to how your last king was unceremoniously dumped/hanged. So much for that boast.

    It was on the host of promises that SL was allowed a free hand to conduct the war against the LTTE and many countries assisted SL in this, particularly the intelligence and other form of very vital assistance, the EU listing of the LTTE as a terrorist organisation all summed up to help the SL regime in winning this war. These very countries have now turned against SL and have now dragged it to the UNHRC. Do you call that a dream? Those jokers who belittled us had mud splashed on their faces. We will continue to keep on smoking the foxes out of its den and there is nothing you can do about it. You only have to see in the coming years how the resolve of the Tamils unfold? As I mentioned earlier, as long you people make our lives miserable, so would your lives be. Instead of coming after us, go and do some INTELLIGENT homework as to how much the Rajapakses have piled up the debts on your heads.

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      Jansee,

      Very well said and however much you say it is not going change the Singhala racists mind.

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    The late Prof. C. Sunderalingam who said that if you scratch a Sinhalese you will find him a racist or a traitor or both. Kusal Perera proves him dead right. I know I am wasting my time in trying to educate him with a little bit of history. Jancee has done it exhaustively and effectively to counter the stale and threadbare arguments of Kusal Perera. Here are some of the fallacies Kusal Perera advanced:

    1)Prabhakaran used the IDPs as human shield: Like a fake coin this argument is being trotted by Sinhala supremacists like Kusal Perera. The fact of the matter is when the Sinhala army – yes I am repeating the word Sinhala – advanced the Thamil people ran to LTTE held areas for safety. They did not run towards army captured territory.

    2)Prabhakaran should have released the IDPs: He was ever willing to do so. He did not want to release them into the hands of the racist Sinhala army for he knew the poor people will be massacred. He was proved right when hundreds if not thousands of Thamils who surrendered to the army have gone missing. Kusal Perera must read the LLRC report on missing persons. Prabhakaran was prepared to surrender the people to a third party like the UNO. The LTTE said that several times as early as March 2099.
    3) The Thamil Eelam dream has died with Prabhakaran/LTTE: Apart from the fact that dreams don’t die as proved by Mohamed Jinnah, the dream thrives with more resilience after May 19th. In fact Prabhakaran and his family have become idols worthy of worship in the eyes of the Thamils more now than before 2009. Kusal Perera should know the demand for Thamil Eelam came long before Prabhakaran and the LTTE. In fact to go back in time, it was Ponnambalam Arunachalam who spoke in 1923 about the Northeast being the homeland of the Thamils. The Sinhalese denied him nomination to the Colombo seat saying he should go and contest from the Northeast. Sooner than later, the international community will be convinced that Thamils cannot co-exist with the Sinhalese racists. The parallel is the Muslim Kosovos and the Christian Serbs. Kosovo was created in 2006 with a total area of 10,887 sq.kms (Thamil Eelam 18880 sq.kms) with a population of just 1,794,303 (World Bank) (Thamil Eelam 3,000,000) people. Kusal Perera would have heard of Montenegro another state created in 2008 out of former Yugoslavia with a total population of just 632,000 (UN 2011) same as the population of Jaffna. Its area is just 13,812 sq.kms.

    4) In every election held since 2009, the Thamils have overwhelmingly voted AGAINST the government of Mahinda Rajapaksa. Mahinda Rajapaksa has no locus standi to speak about Thamil people. If democracy is rule by consent, then the Sinhalese dominated government lacks consent of the Thamil people.
    5) Kusal Perera is straining his imagination to drive a wedge between the Eelam Thamils and the Thamils is Diaspora. He is only dreaming. The Thamil Diaspora is solidly behind the TNA. Due to lack of political space in Ceylon, the TNA is unable to articulate their stand the way they would like to do so. Only last week, a meeting held by the TNA in Kilinochchi was attacked by government goons and army intelligence operatives. One army intelligence operative was caught red handed by the people, but he was allowed to go free by the Police.

    6)When Chief Justice Mrs. Shirani Bandaranayke was impeached and kicked out unceremoniously, it was the Thamil parliamentarians and people who rose in defence of her. Not for anything, but for the fact that INJUSTICE ANYWHERE IS A THREAT TO JUSTICE EVERYWHERE and IF DEMOCRACY IS TO TRIUMPH OVER DICTATORSHIP , THE “RULE OF LAW MUST BE SECURED AGAINST ATTEMPTS BY AMBITIOUS POLITICIANS LIKE MAHINDA RAJAPAKSA. I don’t know where Kusal Perera stood!

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      Thanga:

      “Prabhakaran should have released the IDPs: He was ever willing to do so. He did not want to release them into the hands of the racist Sinhala army for he knew the poor people will be massacred. …. Prabhakaran was prepared to surrender the people to a third party like the UNO. The LTTE said that several times as early as March 2099.”

      Thanks for highlighting this. We have to press home this point. I am sorry that I was never aware of this fact. I need some citation from any source that would help me to put this into perspective. Regards

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