12 December, 2019

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Loopholes: How Tamil Advocacy Penetrates US Foreign Policy Making

By Michael Roberts

Dr. Michael Roberts

Dr. Michael Roberts

At the height of Eelam War IV, as the WikiLeaks material reveals, American officials in Colombo as well as Washington and New York were bombarded with email demands and/or information from ardent Tamil advocates concerned about the deteriorating situation of the LTTE and the populace corralled within Thamiīilam’s declining terrain.

The very diversity of fervent messages had an impact on the thinking of key American policy makers in 2009. The extremism of the vast majority of messages was immediately dismissed. But, in unplanned manner, these missiles opened the door for the US personnel of the State Department to give credence to the claims of the moderate few. This is the implication one can draw from Blake’s Despatch No. 314 of 20 March 2009.

I go further. In explicit conjecture I contend that the same process has been at work in the past few years, especially at the moments when the UN bureaucracy was witch-hunting Sri Lanka in the interests of the desired regime change and/or reform in the island. So, it is a continuing process proceeding now, TODAY.

The American policy makers are directed in part by the liberal-arts thinking developed in US academic institutions, working within the limits set by USA’s definition of its interests. Since the early years of this century “Responsibility to Protect” (or R2P) has been the new flag-bearer of hardline intervention with a moral façade. In relation to Sri Lanka this line of pressure was ratcheted up after the Government of Sri Lanka under the Rajapaksa clan defied the Western world and defeated the LTTE at war in April-May 2009 (Peiris 2007).

Roberto-Blake-meets-President-Mahinda-Rajapaksa colombotelegraphDespite reservations about the LTTE among US functionaries, American realpolitik was guided by lines of policy set out by the US embassy staff in Colombo in the early 1980s as the pathway for the easing of Sri Lanka’s conflict situation: namely, devolution under a federal scheme (Gamage 2011).

That may have been a reasonable notion THEN in the 1980s. But, to any knowledgeable observer in the period 2000-09, such a notion was manifestly out of place because the Sri Lankan Tamils were under the control of a fascist party led by Velupillai Pirapāharan (Hoole 2001: 423-40; Bavinck 2014: 97, 158, 191, 211, 294, 325). How could a provincial unit be set up under the guidance of former Tiger personnel nurtured in fascist ways and military activity! But that is precisely what the Political Attache of the US Embassy in Colombo, Michael Owens, was pointing towards on 6th May 2009. This arose in the course of a public communique indicating USA’s desire to negotiate an LTTE surrender to a third party via a “limited amnesty” as a step that would initiate “the beginning of a political process” (in Gamage 2014).[1]

That mumbling bumbling public disclosure by Owens and the US Embassy in 2009 was not an aberration. It was in line with several American policy pronouncements in 2006-08 from such personnel as Richard Boucher and Robert Blake. Visiting Lanka in 2006 as Assistant Secretary of State for South and Central Asian Affairs, Boucher told a press gathering that in order “to achieve its full potential Sri Lanka needs a final political settlement” (see Boucher 2006). “Sri Lanka is a country of great promise and opportunity if the fighting can stop and a political solution can be agreed on that satisfies Tamil, Sinhalese and Muslim aspirations,” said Ambassador Blake when addressing an audience in Chennai in October 2008 (Roberts 2015d). With the entry of Hilary Clinton as Secretary of State in December 2008 such inclinations would have received a further boost. Clinton does not believe in half-measures.

Understood within such a context, then, Despatch No. 314 of 20th March 2009 from Blake in Colombo is a revelation. “The Tamil Diaspora is vocal, internet-savvy and heavily influenced by hard-line views … Ambassador and a number of Embassy officers receive e-mails from the diaspora on a daily basis, most of them expressing points of view similar to those of the demonstrators. At times these e-mails include fake or exaggerated claims posted on pro-LTTE websites”

That evaluation is discretion personified. But Blake then goes on to say that

  • “Ambassador and other Mission staff have made a point of engaging those who have written. In reply, we stress the USG’s commitment to a viable long-term political solution that meets the aspirations of all of Sri Lanka’s communities.” … and that
  • “While the most vocal elements of the Diaspora are often the most hard-line, the Tamil community overseas is not homogeneous. The Norwegians speak to the more moderate elements of the Diaspora in an attempt to engage the community as a whole.”

Thus, one sees here that some moderate Tamil voices in the diaspora as well as Sri Lanka managed to get their foot in the American door. Seeds could be planted in powerful US office desks fashioning American policy. Let me stress again that in my conjecture the Tamil extremists and moderates were not working in concert. What I have identified in the course of the researches among Wikileaks data is an unplanned consequence of some significance for the broad Tamil cause.

Note that only two days previously, on the 18th or 19th March 2009 the US Ambassador had warned the Foreign Minister Bogollagama at a face-to-face meeting that he “strongly cautioned the government not to enter the safe zone forcibly” and stated that “if there were civilian casualties the government of Sri Lanka would be accused of war crimes” (Roberts 2015e). As we know, this programme was instituted after the war ended, with Sri Lanka being targeted for its temerity via the machinery of the UN bureaucracy marshalled by USA – with the “UN Panel of Experts” as the initial strike force (Roberts 2015a & 2015f).

This is not to suggest that the Tamil advocates exerted a decisive impact. Rather it points to some threads of influence then in 2008/09. In a geo-political order where Chinese influence within the Rajapaksa government was a major concern, the official readings of US interests rather than Tamil insinuations would have been the major force moulding Washington’s decisions. The insidious impact of Tamil advocates would have been interstitial rather than arterial.

However, one should not underestimate the capacities and influences arising from the continuation of this process from 2009 to 2015. The ardour, persistence and vigour of the Tamil nationalists of the diaspora and those in Colombo and Jaffna remain unabated. The veneration of Pirapāharan is probably as strong as ever (Jayaweera 2015).. All the signs indicate that Sri Lankan Tamil bitterness runs deep, even boiling over into hatred (TamilNet 2013a). The hate-filled communications to US personnel that continue today from extremists may cause revulsion, but in my surmise these open the door to the threads and seeds cast by more moderate voices. The impact may not be world-shattering, but the drip-drip effect has the potential to weigh significantly in favour of the Sri Lankan Tamil movement for self-determination.

BIBLIOGRAPHY

Bavinck, Ben 2014  Of Tamils and Tigers. A Journey through Sri Lanka’s War Years, Part II, Colombo: VijithaYapa Publications.

Boucher, Richard 2008 “Richard Boucher in Press Q and A at SAARC Meeting in Lanka, 3 August 2008, 8 September 2008, https://thuppahi.wordpress.com/2015/09/08/richard-boucher-in-press-q-and-a-at-saarc-meeting-in-lanka-3-august-2008/

Gamage, Daya 2008 “Barack Obama & Civil War in Sri Lanka; Robert Blake’s Mind-Set; Negating R2P Psychology Build-Up,” 2 November 2008, http://www.asiantribune.com/?q=node/14004.

Gamage, Daya 2011 “Tamil Issue in Sri Lanka: US Policy Development 1981-1995,” 5 June 2011, http://www.asiantribune.com/news/2011/06/04/tamil-issue-us-%E2%80%93-sri-lanka-relations-proper-perspective-part-one-policy-development-

Gamage, Daya 2014 “The American Agenda for Sri Lanka’s National l Issues, 1970s-2014,” 5 July 2014, https://thuppahi.wordpress.com/2014/07/05/the-american-agenda-for-sri-lankas-national-issues-1970s-2014/

Richard Gowan 2015 “A Hardline R2P Interventionist? An American Analyst’s Interpretation of Samantha Power,” 22 November 2015, https://thuppahi.wordpress.com/2015/11/22/a-hardline-r2p-interventionist

Gunatilleke] 2015 “International Pressures & Island Fissures: Gunatilleke faces Ratnawalli,” 5 November 2015 https://thuppahi.wordpress.com/2015/11/05/international-pressures-island-fissures-gunatilleke-faces-ratnawalli/

Hoole, Rajan 2001 The Arrogance of Power, Nugegoda: Wasala Publications.

Jeyaraj, DBS 2011 “KP” Speaks Out, Vavuniya: NERDO.

Ladduwahetty, Neville 2014 Sri Lanka’s Armed Conflict, Colombo.

Marga 2014 Issues of Truth and Accountability. The Last Stages of the War in Sri Lanka, https://www.dropbox.com/s/tdxwntf7wu5andq/The%20Last%20Stages%20of%20the%20war%20in%20Sri%20Lanka.pdf?n=66191473

Peiris, Gerald H. 2007The Responsibility to Protect and External Interventions in the Sri Lankan Conflict,” reprint on 20 November 2015, https://thuppahi.wordpress.com/2015/11/20/the-responsibility-to-protect-and-external-interventions-in-the-sri-lankan-conflict/

Roberts, Michael 2011 “People of Righteousness target Sri Lanka,” 27 June 2011, https://thuppahi.wordpress.com/2011/06/27/people-of-righteousness-target-sri-lanka/

Roberts, Michael 2014 “Generating Calamity, 2008-2014: An Overview of Tamil Nationalist Operations and Their Marvels,” 10 April 2014, http://groundviews.org/2014/04/10/generating-calamity-2008-2014-an-overview-of-tamil-nationalist-operations-and-their-marvels/

Roberts, Michael 2015a “Targeting Sri Lanka by playing ball with Tamil Extremism,” 24 July 2015, https://thuppahi.wordpress.com/wpadmin/post.php?post=17127&action=edit&postpost=v2

Roberts, Michael 2015b “Ambassador Blake in Never-Never-Land: Misreading LTTE Capacity in Early 2009,” 26 August 2015, https://thuppahi.wordpress.com/2015/08/26/ambassador-blake-in-never-never-land-misreading-ltte-capacity-in-early-2009/

Roberts, Michael 2015c “American Action and Inaction on Sri Lanka, 2008/09: A Critical Evaluation,” 5 September 2015, https://thuppahi.wordpress.com/2015/09/08/robert-blake-on-u-s-perspectives-on-sri-lanka-at-chennai-24-october-2008/#more-17684

Roberts, Michael 2015d Robert Blake on ‘U.S. Perspectives on Sri Lanka,’ 24 October 2008,” 8 September 2015, https://thuppahi.wordpress.com/2015/09/08/robert-blake-on-u-s-perspectives-on-sri-lanka-at-chennai-24-october-2008/

Roberts, Michael 2015e “The Realities of Eelam War IV,” 27 October 2015, https://thuppahi.wordpress.com/2015/10/27/the-realities-of-eelam-war-iv/

Roberts, Michael 2015f “Sturdy Advocacy: Marga’s Questioning of the UNPoE Assassination Job,” 25 November 2015, https://thuppahi.wordpress.com/wp-admin/post.php?post=18544&action=edit&postpost=v2

UNPoE Report 2011 Report of the Secretary-General’s Panel of Experts on Accountability in Sri Lanka, March 2011, http://www.un.org/News/dh/infocus/Sri_Lanka/The_Internal_Review_Panel_report_on_Sri_Lanka.pdf


[1] This tentative programme never got off the ground because the SL Army overran the LTTE terrain over the next 12 days. For Selvarasa Pathmanathan’s efforts to rescue the LTTE leadership – attempts that provided the lead-up to Michael Owens’ comment – see DBS Jeyaraj, “KP” Speaks Out, Vavuniya: NERDO, 2011

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Latest comments

  • 13
    7

    More conspiracy theories from down under citing his own work, I guess one needs work to keep oneself occupied after retirement.

    • 0
      5

      What never ceases to amaze me is……
      When anyone has a burning issue in their heart or a intellectual dosiay to share
      The same hum drum is spat out:
      “They have nothing better to do”
      How heartless and callous to insult Michael Roberts like this.
      He has always been a dedicated Sri Lankan regardless of where he throws his hat now.

  • 10
    8

    “The impact may not be world-shattering, but the drip-drip effect has the potential to weigh significantly in favour of the Sri Lankan Tamil movement for self-determination.”

    Without relaxing even a millimeter from the tight hold on the neck of Tamils, writing poisonous essays along with Hoole will cool it down.

    If not pawning with China, export to Swiss bank. If not exporting to Swiss Bank, export to Dubai Bank. At the Dutu Gemunu Royalty no revenge Politics. Every Sinhala Intellectuals contributed. Every Sinhala Intellectuals shared the reward. Then the tiles of PhD and Dr. are additional curse on this comedies.

    Sinhala Intellectualism has liberated Lankawe from LTTE!

    Congratulations for the success of the process Don Stephen had started and Solomon Ridge West nurtured and now protected by Michael Roberts.. Dyan De Silva .. that patriotism.

    Bravo!

    But Tamils have a souls in their bodies. Thier life have to continue.

  • 6
    5

    …Let me stress again that in my conjecture the Tamil extremists and moderates were not working in concert…

    Think again, Mr Roberts!

  • 15
    11

    Sinhala racist ranting as always:

    When will these Sinhala racists stop this pathological hate towards Tamils?

    • 9
      5

      Thiru proves Michael Robert’s point. Any opportunity to attack the majority.

      • 7
        4

        Paul,

        What did the Sinhala majority do to the Tamil community since 1948?

        They grabbed Tamil people’s lands, discriminated in many walks of life, let loose pogroms, killed thousands, raped and plundered their hard earned possessions, and at the height in 2009 they ethnically cleansed and committed genocide more than hundred and fifty thousand Tamils.

        Still structural genocide of the Tamil nation continues unabated with a new so-called good government front.

        Does anybody expect the Tamils to believe what the Sinhala majority says?

        • 1
          1

          ‘Does anybody expect the Tamils to believe what the Sinhala majority says?’

          What do they say?

    • 2
      0

      That’s easy to answer
      When the Tamils cease their filthy lies.

  • 12
    8

    How disgusting for an academc to write this assuming that the immense injustice to the ethnic minorities that continues to this day from the time of independence that has been generating
    i.reports(with atrocious pictures) by national and international journalists
    ii.periodic reports by national, regional and international human rights organisations and by various entities of the UN
    iii.the speeches made inside and outside Sri Lanka and articles published inside and outside Sri Lanka by conscientious Sinhalese(including the submissions to LLRC and letters to Sri Lankan Presidents)
    iv.research papers and books written by Sinhalese and foreign academics,
    aern’t mentioned as having an effect on the international community.

    Leave alone everythingelse. One has to look at what has been appearing on this website alone.

    Of course the oppressed people around the world are writing to foreign bodies (as well as making protest marches in foreign countries) to get the attention on their own oppressive governments.

    Writing an article like this isn’t simply childish but will surely fire the flagging notions of ”foreign conspiracies” among extremist Sinhala nationalists.

    • 1
      0

      “Extremist Sinhala Nationlists”
      Hmmm
      Now change that to:
      “Extremist Sinhala Chuvanistic Nationalists”
      Then that’s actually quite befitting.
      You throw around the word ‘extremist’ to evoke fear and mistrust.
      The Sinhala Buddhists prayed then went to sleep in peace.
      They awoke to discover that India and Arabia were secretly training their fellow citizens for 5 years, to become highly organised brutal terrorists.
      Innocence and trust flew out of the window when the first drop of precious blood soaked the ground.
      30 years later some of you have the audacity to use the word extremist when referring to the Sinhala Buddhists, God help you.
      It’s to be a United Sri Lanka
      Or no Sri Lanka
      Any country that does not have powerful Chuvanistic leaders will be a country living in trees.

  • 11
    7

    This fellow Roberts writes a lot on subjects he doesn’t know, but pretends to know. He doesn’t live in Sri Lanka and knows nothing of ground realities.

  • 13
    7

    This guy has listed under BIBLIOGRAPHY 21 article/books that he has apparently read/researched to write this racist rant.

    Who is he fooling?

    • 4
      3

      Who are you fooling Raghavan?

      • 3
        3

        Hello any Raghavan out there , please answer Paul’s question

    • 6
      5

      He has listed Dubious Jeyarajah, Rajan Hoolie & Micheal Roberts. If you go to their articles they too reference only the same three, may be, Dubious Jeyeyarajah, Rajan Hoole, Micheal Roberts.

      If you check thier deposit slips the lefs too come from the same check book.

  • 4
    4

    My friend Amarasiri where are you ?
    Please be forthright as usual and enlighten the CT readers about probable DNA of Anthropologist Dr.Michael Roberts.
    How come he has a name ” Michael Roberts” and a PhD ? DJ also have PhD but dropped his surname de Silva.

    Any idea whether these types of analysts have South Indian DNA in them ?

    Any idea why he chose to settle down in Australia a pro US country ?

    • 0
      0

      A persons DNA is their own business.

  • 10
    3

    What do you mean by moderate Tamil? When the asked for equal rights for Tamil language they were not moderate, when they asked for regional/district councils they were not, when they wanted a federal state they were extremists, when they failed in every respect and took up to ARMS they were terrorists. And now when they ask for powers for Provincial Councils they are dangerous and dividing. What a life?

  • 11
    9

    From an academic to a partisan hate monger. Once respected at the Peradeniya University as a bright and talented historian, has now been bought by money from corrupt politicians. This guy is twisting history to the advantage of his masters. He has lost all respect and regards students of history had for him all these years.

    • 0
      0

      This kind of people (past scholars), now retired & jobless can be easily bought by the racist politicians for a reasonably good price. Unfortunately, most of this kind, when they become jobless, they make use of their past credibility/popularity, academic titles, etc to write crooked and dishonest articles by twisting and turning the facts to satisfy their pay masters. You can see a few of this kind here on CT, compare what they said then and what they are saying now (after becoming jobless), there is no consistency, and they sometimes contradict themselves. The problem is, as long as they get paid handsomely, they do not want to even think (become blind) that they have totally lost their credibility among those who once respected them.

  • 9
    6

    The hate-filled responses that fill the Comments section of these threads and denigrate any point of view that challenges LTTE-supporter viewpoints. are a significant symbol of what still festers in that community’s psyche. While their self- hate will lead to implosion from within the Tamil community they are also a warning to academics who might question the validity of statements made by those who are in the business of challenging the re-writing of the history of Sri Lanka.

    The situation reflects and exaggerates what is going on in most other countries as well in this chaotic out-of-control world of today’s double standards, hypocrisies and power-hungry money-driven legislators, that are being further spurred by suicide-driven terrorists who assist the downward spiral of chaos. Paris seems already forgotten as San Bernardino fills the 24/7 news.
    What’s next???

    • 7
      4

      1.Dayan admits who generates hatred:

      Please let me remind you of what he wrote on 28/01/2014 in Groundviews.org:

      ”Mr Weeratunga’s presentation does not contain any of the following points which could rally the requisite support to deflect the threat of an international accountability mechanism:
      ……
      5.A UNESCO supervised revision of school text books by a panel of internationally renowned Sri Lankan scholars (such as Prof Sudharshan Seneviratne) so as to minimize prejudice against communities and ‘build the defences of peace in the minds of men’.
      ……”

      This is in reaponse to:
      ‘’Education must rise on the agenda of peace building. We know the wrong type of education can fuel conflict. The use of education systems to foster hatred has contributed to the underlying causes of conflicts, from Rwanda to Sri Lanka, but also in Guatemala and Sudan’’ – Why education matters for global security, Irina Bokova(Director General, UNESCO), 1 March 2011, http://www.unesco.org/new/en/unesco/about-us/who-we-are/director-general/singleview-dg/news/education_and_security_dawn_pakistan_why_education_matters_for_global_security_234nextcom_nigeria/#.U1oX3vldVqU

      2. The following link contains many useful references on hatred and textbooks that all teachers, parents, pupils and politicians should know:
      http://www.scribd.com/doc/211491454/Peacebuilding-in-Sri-Lanka-Needs-UNESCO-to-Supervise-Revision-of-School-Textbooks

      • 1
        0

        However, Mr. Panabokke…rewriting of history in the name of peace and reconciliation will not stand the test of Time.
        The original history recorded is in various archival sites both in Sri Lanka and abroad. A re-written history will not force the narratives of history to be forgotten.
        The current government cannot erase the Truth through stoppage of the teaching of certain subjects as had been done during certain periods of Sri Lanka’s post-independence period by some Ministers and Presidents who tried to do so, especially in a country with a cherished civilisational heritage as in this island. Those who try to do so have no understanding of the place of history in the hearts and minds of the People, just as history does in the hearts and minds of patriotic people in other countries. A brief 4-5yr reign of the Yahapalana govt. much will be experimented in their attempt to erase history, but Sri Lanka’s history being the Truth recorded will prevail. In the USA, which has but a ~300yr history, the Civil War’s divisions have been expected to disappear, but have not. The Unionists v. the Confederates still have reconciled only superficially.
        The expectation that ONLY the poor of Sri Lanka are the persons who cherish the island’s long history, while the educated and professionals will sell their souls readily for some “filthy lucre”, is a viewpoint of the Colombo-bred only.
        Efforts at bull-dozing a Full Devolution package through Parliament will only lead to war, in the opinion of those who understand the psyche and feel the pulse of the people at large.
        The UNP’s RW and the SLFPs MS with some spur-work by CBK will keep on trying to get the regime change’s promises to go through, but especially in light of the new Budget, on a trajectory to create more disparity between the Haves and Have Nots,it is the Govt. in power that will have to bear the responsibility for creating another War.
        Does this government really want to go down in history as being so blind to the unpredictable consequences of war as were unleashed by stupidity in the ME?

        • 0
          0

          CountryFirst

          I am sorry, since I am bit thick I am unable to follow your typing.

          Could you tell us what exactly you want from Sinhalese, Tamils, Muslims, Buddhists, Hindus, Christians, …… to do in this island?

          • 1
            0

            Native Veddha: You say…”Could you tell us what exactly you want from Sinhalese, Tamils, Muslims, Buddhists, Hindus, Christians, …… to do in this island?”
            It seems to me there is deliberate attempt by you to find confusion in clarity.
            THAT SAID:
            My simple answer to your loaded question is that I want the Tamil and Muslim people of Sri Lanka to help in finding reasonable and fair solutions to diffuse the current hate-filled psyches (clearly demonstrated by their writings in these threads), AND live WITH the majority Sinhala people WITHOUT letting violence be the deciding factor, and WITH respect to each others’ differences, IN AN UNDIVIDED ISLAND.

  • 8
    2

    Going by the comments, hard-line pack is out for MR’s(Micheal Robert’s) blood.\

    But Tamils have a souls in their bodies. Thier life have to continue – mallaiyuran………
    Oh ! where were those tamil sould who funded the LTTE and snuffed the life out of our Youth & Children through the ltte?
    It appears, most of the Tamil Souls have got rotton due to blinkers.

    Sad but true. We move on laying blame for the missing instead of counting the number of Youth & Children we sent to the Creator including those suicide-driven youth who were called terrorists .

    • 1
      2

      “Oh ! where were those tamil sould who funded the LTTE and snuffed the life out of our Youth & Children through the ltte?”

      I did not know the answer. I checked the references from Dubious Jeyaraja, Michael Robert & Rajan Hoolie. I found out the Answer as “in Western countries”!

      There were two other options. One to follow Dharmapala and hand over Kotte to Portuguese. 2nd when chinese hack the computers for the dollar given to defeat Susan Rice, Handing over the Port City Land. But Tamils wanted to go for the third option. JR wanted them to go out to Western countries and fund LTTE in July 1983, They did that.

    • 1
      2

      So, what has been happening since LTTE was decimated in 2009: more oppression:
      Northern Province Governor H.M.G.S. Palihakkara, Chief Guest at 176th Annual General Meeting of Ceylon Chamber of Commerce told the audience that the very fact that we are constrained to talk about conflict related challenges more than six years after ending the conflict is in itself a matter of some concern and that the absence of a structured dialogue on issues of devolution, governance and reform between ethnic communities and political parties is neither conducive to reconciliation and peace-building nor to economic growth, http://www.ft.lk/article/439811/Northern-Province-Governor-s-rallying-call-for-investment-and-reconciliation

  • 2
    4

    There are all kinds of people around the world with all kinds of thoughts. Look at why Sri Lanka Governments does what it does to Tamils after Independence from the British. Look at why Sri Lanka supported the series of onslaughts on unarmed Tamil civilians all over Sri Lanka. Look at why Tamil Terrorism flourished for some decades. Look at why Sri Lanka and LTTE formed a peace accord. Look at why Sri Lanka cornered LTTE and the rest of the Tamils and killed indiscriminately. Look at different opinions of different authors on related topics. Look at the education of the different people who inseminate terrorism in public. Whatever the suffering and whoever affected never stay the same way throughout. Justice has to be the same for all, and justice will be served for both sides and that cannot be avoided with extremism and covenient jusice systems.

  • 3
    4

    How did this joker become a Rhodes Scholar?

    • 2
      0

      He must be smarter than Maynard, Keynes.

  • 0
    0

    “That may have been a reasonable notion THEN in the 1980s. But, to any knowledgeable observer in the period 2000-09, such a notion was manifestly out of place because the Sri Lankan Tamils were under the control of a fascist party led by Veluppillai Pirapāharan (Hoole 2001: 423-40; Bavinck 2014: 97, 158, 191, 211, 294, 325). How could a provincial unit be set up under the guidance of former Tiger personnel nurtured in fascist ways and military activity! But that is precisely what the Political Attache of the US Embassy in Colombo.”

    The author of this article is exhibiting stark ignorance when he labels the LTTE as a fascist party. His conclusion was based on the opinion of Hoole, a denationalized Thamil who has northing in common with the millions of ordinary Thamils living world over. He will lose deposit if he stands for election even to a Pradesha Sabha. The distinction between a fascists /terrorists and a freedom fighters is the popular support commanded by freedom fighters. The LTTE ran a de facto government where a woman wearing gold jewellery can walk on the streets at midnight in Vanni without an iota of fear. The LTTE was immensely popular with the masses. People considered the LTTE as a liberation movement that wanted to liberate the Thamils from an oppressive and fascist government. As claimed many times by eminent persons, the armed struggle was a direct result of state violence inflicted on Thamils ever since independence. Chandrika Kumaratunga put it succinctly when she said Prabhakaran is the product of Sinhala racism. One cannot create a fighting force from thin air. Concrete socio-political-economic conditions must exist. Prabhakaran has repeatedly said he would not be carrying a gun if Jayewardene was a good Buddhist. Italian fascists and German Nazis were disowned by the people after their defeat, but not Prabhakaran and LTTE. Prabhakaran is the only Thamil leader whose birth day is celebrated around the globe from Australia to Canada and right inside Northeast. The learned author must explain why this is so. Dr.Michael Roberts should grow up.

  • 1
    0

    Why is joker from down under digging up the past?. Hasn’t he anything better to do?.

    • 0
      0

      Leonvet,

      This Galah is so far down under, he cannot help but dig!

  • 0
    0

    This fellow dabbles in cricket writing as well. He comes from my State. He should stop writing on matters he has no clue about.

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