19 November, 2018

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The LTTE & The Global Caste System

By Rajan Hoole

Dr. Rajan Hoole

Dr. Rajan Hoole

Tamils & The Political Culture Of Auto-Genocide –V

In common religion a man who feels weak, oppressed, inadequate and is falling behind others pays homage to a god and feels flowing in his veins, a new sense of power. Identifying with Prabhakaran and paying homage to him gave many Tamils in the diaspora a feeling of virility and of power. It enabled them to regard with indifference their alienation and the sense of being second class citizens. Their god whose spirit moved in them, seemed greater than any alive. Why, the Tiger flag of the ancient Chola warriors may today even be over-flying many more lands than the Chola emperors ever dreamed of. Tiger occasions have thus become religious occasions fulfilling a multitude of needs of expatriate Tamils. The feudal lords and the lords turned out by the remarkable educational system at home make their speeches, but the others are not left out. These occasions have all the mirth and gaiety of upper class functions in Colombo. The Tiger cause which pulsates through the proceedings gives them the self-confidence and assertiveness which they lost at home sometime ago.

Hot Spring, a glossy journal full of colour pictures that could be digested in a short time, provided terse messages about their heroes, traitors and villains (e.g. the Sri Lankan Government and Neelan) to keep the faithful enthused. More importantly, it gave an insight into the politics of this group. There were regular editorials which told the faithful that Armageddon or Eelam is around the corner. A recent issue which celebrated the Black Tigers who commit suicide for their cause had, two pages later, marriage advertisements celebrating life and prosperity for young Tamils overseas. There were occasional coded hints that the partner required should be culturally Western, a far cry from the Tamil speaking village youth who join the Black Tigers and are pulverised. The rustic Black Tigers have, however, become a prop for the deficient personality of their peers.

Every inconvenient event is twisted around to suit the purpose of the elite LTTE lobby. Such a one was the Lionair passenger flight from Jaffna to Colombo shot down by the LTTE on 29th September 1998 killing 48 passengers and 7 crew. The Hot Spring editorial obliquely admitted the LTTE’s responsibility. The editor then had his brain-wave to divert the reader away from the tragedy. He referred to the fact that flights between Jaffna and Colombo had been stopped (temporarily as it turned out), and that the air-bridge which sustained links between the North and South, had been broken. The reader was asked to ponder the good news – the North separated from the South – Armageddon or Eelam had almost arrived!

A normal person would see such a state of mind as even more callous and revolting when blatantly paraded before the world by expatriate Tamils. Their concern for the Tamils at home and for the violence they suffer from the State as well as from their own groups is very legitimate, as is any concern that they should enjoy an equitable political arrangement. Many of those who live overseas are very knowledgeable about the modern world, having held UN appointments and regularly visited Human Rights fora. They would also know so many intelligent and effective ways of applying pressure on the Sri Lankan Government. Why do they then reinforce the stranglehold of the LTTE over the young at home with its horrendous implications? This is in sharp contrast to the educational attainments and success in work and matrimony they seek for their own children.

Their support for the Tigers thus becomes a struggle for their personal ego and a reflection of sheer nastiness towards the Tamils at home. That is why those like Neelan Tiruchelvam who advocated the rational option open to the Tamils in the modern world became hate figures for them.

The more sophisticated among them have an argument to justify this state of affairs, having its roots, not surprisingly, in caste and karma. It was decided by karma that those born into the upper castes must enjoy positions and privileges accruing to them from the labour and worship of those in the humbler ones. Equally, fate had decreed that those at home – the new under caste – must suffer, die and achieve Eelam. It is for the LTTE supporters abroad to enjoy the vicarious glory accruing to them from the birth of the new state, where their role is to be rulers, investors, consultants and benefactors. In the writings of Wakely Paul, an Oxbridge educated Tamil living in the USA, the role of the expatriate Tamils is compared with the role of American Jews. The latter were engaged in lobbying and providing the financial wherewithal and arms for setting up of the modern Israeli State, of course at grievous cost and grave injustice to the native Palestinians. But a key difference is wilfully overlooked.

The American Jews at least took the trouble to ensure that the new Jewish State was democratically structured among its Jewish inhabitants. They would have been outraged otherwise. But the Tamil Eelam envisaged under the LTTE by Western Tamils is unashamedly fascist, guaranteeing the worst ever inequalities and injustices. This characterises the enormous cultural difference between the Western Jews and the expatriate Tamils. The outlook of the latter has little to do with truth, democracy, and freedom. It is rather about the karma they impose on people at home to fight, die and lose all the attributes that ennoble human life. It is a fate from which the people at home shall not be allowed to escape.

*To be continued..

*From Rajan Hoole‘s “Sri Lanka: Arrogance of Power – Myth, Decadence and Murder”. Thanks to Rajan for giving us permission to republish. To read earlier parts click here

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  • 5
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    Dr. Rajan Hoole

    RE: The LTTE & The Global Caste System

    “In common religion a man who feels weak, oppressed, inadequate and is falling behind others pays homage to a god and feels flowing in his veins, a new sense of power. Identifying with Prabhakaran and paying homage to him gave many Tamils in the diaspora a feeling of virility and of power.”

    Kataragama Deviyo and Devale..

    Killinochhi Praba Deviyo and Davale at where?

    “The more sophisticated among them have an argument to justify this state of affairs, having its roots, not surprisingly, in caste and karma. It was decided by karma that those born into the upper castes must enjoy positions and privileges accruing to them from the labour and worship of those in the humbler ones. Equally, fate had decreed that those at home – the new under caste – must suffer, die and achieve Eelam.”

    Looks like the Hindu Caste Systems ran very deep even within the LTTE.

    So what was LTTE fighting for? Make Maduveeran Velupillai Prabakaran a God so that the Low IQ Tamils of low case Pray to him?
    It is easy to understand this because the Tamils and Sinhala are Paras in the Land of Native Veddah Aethho and they cale from India, as shown by the DNA in their para-bodies.

  • 1
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    Rajan Hoole:-
    If you lived in Sri Lanka you would be murdered for this below, like Neelan Thiruchelvam!

    “The more sophisticated among them have an argument to justify this state of affairs, having its roots, not surprisingly, in caste and karma. It was decided by karma that those born into the upper castes must enjoy positions and privileges accruing to them from the labour and worship of those in the humbler ones. Equally, fate had decreed that those at home – the new under caste – must suffer, die and achieve Eelam. It is for the LTTE supporters abroad to enjoy the vicarious glory accruing to them from the birth of the new state, where their role is to be rulers, investors, consultants and benefactors. In the writings of Wakely Paul, an Oxbridge educated Tamil living in the USA, the role of the expatriate Tamils is compared with the role of American Jews. The latter were engaged in lobbying and providing the financial wherewithal and arms for setting up of the modern Israeli State, of course at grievous cost and grave injustice to the native Palestinians. But a key difference is wilfully overlooked.”

    • 4
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      Dear Rationalist,

      The fact is that Rajan Hoole did live in Sri Lanka throughout, but he took the precaution of hiding both from the LTTE, and from the (equally dangerous!) Sri Lankan government. I’ve not bothered to ask him for all the details of the misery he underwent for fifteen years of hiding, before getting back to Jaffna University, with his seniority lost. He has now retired as Senior Lecturer, not the Professor he was marked out to be from his childhood onward. When we do talk, it is very seriously and objectively. There’s nothing frivolous about the poor guy any more, although he does have a quiet sense of humour.

      He hid in Sinhalese areas, because the threat from the Tigers may have been more serious for him than from the government.

      More than a decade ago, there was an occasion when his younger brother, the late Muthan (Charles, to me) said that if I’d like to have a telephone chat with my classmate Rajan (Michael, I still call him), it could be arranged. At that time there were fewer phones around than now, and I said that I didn’t want to unnecessarily expose Michael to danger; however, if he ever needed a new hiding place, well, my remote home was available.

      “Thiru” (below) – you usually talk sense – surely, you cannot be commenting on Rajan’s writing?

      As for “Tamil from the north”, and “Siva” who have also commented below, I hope you will stop being puerile. Is Rajan to blame for his birth? His comments on the caste system are objective, and very necessary. Also, Rajan isn’t writing this now. This is the serialisation of a book that he wrote some time ago.

      This appeal is to ALL Tamils: Please regard these Caste Problems as something internal to your community. It is when you allow outsiders, whether Sinhalese or Foreigners, to see that you are making no headway in tackling these issues, that we make a heavy-handed mess of your society.

  • 3
    11

    Rajan Hoole, don’t you have anything else to write? Are you trying to revive the God forsaken dreaded LTTE again? They are dead and gone and let them stay that way. Stop writing this LTTE nonsense again.

  • 2
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    This man has crazy ideas, and goes on blabbering rubbish.

  • 8
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    In a society dominated by divisions of cast democracy is an outsider.
    Tamils fighting for Eelam simply decieved themslves,both here in Sri Lanka and abroad,were only serving the needs of their foreign masters and sadly it still continues.

  • 3
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    It would be possible for one to associate and concur with most of what Dr. Rajan Hoole has said about the expatriate Tamils in the West and their uncritical loyalty and approval fof all the atrocities that the LTTE committed, but to generalise that sentiment would be incorrect and counter productive.
    Despite the risk of being labelled as a pro- LTTE’r , as a explanation, imany of the expatriates who had suffered directly in 1983 and carrying bitter memories such as the burning of the Jaffna Public Library. for instance( and mindful of the consequences of the uncertainties of having been forced to relocate for their safety and survival in foreign climes, such an attitude was understandable, whenever the LTTE exploded a bomb or assassinated a racist politician in the South.

  • 12
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    Thank You Dr Hoole for lifting the veil and illuminating another interesting facet of modern Tamildom. Thank you CT for publishing. Makes a welcome change from the Sirisena shenanigans.

  • 2
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    Some incite into the hindu caste system…

    Manusmriti also began a frightening wave of ‘Brahmanical Hinduism’, which unfortunately can still be found in pockets of today’s Hindu society. Brahmanical Hinduism places those who dilude themselves to be a part of a ‘high caste’ on a pedastal to walk over non-’high castemen’, women, non-Hindus and all those oppose them. Naturally at the time, selfish and socially powerful Brahmins favored this thinking and spread it as far as they could. For this reason did Manusmriti-isms become so widespread.

    There is even a paper written by the brilliant Madhu Kishwar on how Manusmriti was nothing more than the favored document of the British to empose upon the extremely diverse India.

    Source: thehindublog.tumblr.com

    We in Sadhana reject any personal affiliation with caste or the system of castes. We realize that this is a privileged choice, but it is the starting point for our journey into a world where we are all free from the mechanism of caste. Others can identify as they wish, and if caste is an important part of someone’s identity, we respect their choice so long as they do not see themselves as higher or lower than others, and so long as they do not perpetrate abuses based on caste.

    Source: http://www.sadhana.org/index.php/blog/entry/a-hinduism-without-caste

  • 4
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    Dear Dr. Rajan Hoole

    When I read your articale I feel you Are writing your experiance with expat tamil community.

    Your assemptions Are very imperial and statistical, not individual based fact.

    There are tamils who are in the expat community wanting leadership and reconition in the community for there views are engaged in all sort of activities such as new born Christianity, hindu temples and advocating for tamil identify and etc.

    I meet a new born Christian paster advocating to mary tamil people in Jaffna to help them come out of Sri Lanka.
    He said this is gods Message ..

    Cast system is still alive in Expat community who wrote in his door that only his cast can ring the door bell and he is from. Carava cast Christian.

    Even in Sri Lanka we have cast system in place, who do you think Can become head priest of Asgriya etc. Who Can become Head priest of Nallur temple? The Cast system is still alive with tamils and Singelease. It is slowly but steadly decreasing in Sri Lanka.

    Do you know Cast is a problem at the same time a Powerful position is also a problem or using linguistic or race based teory is even greater problem.

    I beleave we need a better arrangment in Sri Lanka that new socity accomerdates all kind of people cast and cried.

    We need to have proper discusion in Sri Lanka with inquiry in the past to resolve better future.

    I beleave the gready old generation who created the divition in Sri Lanka for there success and power.
    In this Process we were experiancing revolt from JVP and LTTE and etc. Prabaharan and his friends do not have a doctorate or high cast back ground. If a person like him Can convince the majority of Tamils, you as an expat tamil should be able to convince the tamil community with your knowlidge and experiance.

  • 0
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    M.Yoga.

    I have read your comments before; This comment is in the fractured English of a Chinese trader!

  • 0
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    The man in this photograph is enjoying his dip.Does he also sip when he dips?
    But you have still to tell the world who pulled the trigger when Lakshman Kadirgamer was taking a dip before he took a sip!

  • 3
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    There is a basic truth about war in virtually all countries where there is no compulsory military service: while the well-off make the decision to go to war and sustain it, the burden on providing boots on the ground falls lopsidedly on the children of the under privileged who join he military for the steady income and job opportunity it provides. I see a lot of this in Western societies.

    Suicide bombings and child conscription were specific to the LTTE. But the more general condition, that certain classes of people disproportionately bear the brunt of any war, exists in every society.

    • 0
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      Very,very true.
      wars must be fought between volunteers.

      • 4
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        soma

        “Very,very true. wars must be fought between volunteers.”

        Nopes.

        The leaders should have fought leaders of opposing sides. For example Duttha-Gamini’s battle with Elara:

        JR Vs VP
        RP VS VP
        DBW VS VP
        CBK VS VP
        MR VS VP

        By the way JR, RP, DBW, CBK & MR were the political leader as well as the commander chief of the armed forces.

        VP was political leader as well as the commander in chief of his tri services, including army, navy and his air force.

        They should have been given the choice of their weapons,

        Itiya/Assegai (Spears/Lances)
        Bows/Arrows
        Sword/Dagger/Shield
        Porawa (Battle Axe)
        Elephants/Horses/Chariots

        Please note leaders fighting could have saved hundreds of thousands of life.

        Alternatively Hindia should have sold/donated nuclear weapons to VP and JR.

        Being a much cherished deterrent, Nuclear weapons should/could have prevented war between LTTE and Sri Lankan state. At a later date both sides could have been persuaded to give up nuclear weapon as part of the final peace deal.

        • 0
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          India wqs smarter than you. They knew that instead of giving nuclear weapons, it is better to create Prabhakaran. It decimated the tamils, and weakened the Sinhala to such an extent that India can control theme easily.

          Also, this list shows that
          JR Vs VP, RP VS VP, DBW VS VP, CBK VS VP, MR VS VP
          the tamils could not come up with anybody other than VP all the time!
          The Sinhala could change till they got the right man to annihilate VP.

          The LTTE having killed more tamils than the Govt, they have allowed our community to soon become the leading minority, with the Tamils becoming the second minority. If MR did not come to power and eliminate VP, by now the Vanni tamils would have all perished!

  • 0
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    Plato you are right I am writing like My english is like Chinease tirader, Can not complain to my forign language iPad sorry for killing the language :)

  • 0
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    If Plato can understand the facts in Yoga’s comments , then he won’t criticise of the spelling. Or he doesn’t like to accept the truth which is Rajan Hoole is pretending to be a supporter of ordinary Tamils.

    When Singhalese doesn’t understand our problem, Tamils can forgive them but Tamils like Rajan Hoole even after 6 years of misery of our people still writing these hurtful comments, how can we consider him as a human being at the least.

  • 5
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    M.Yoga.
    Hope no hard feelings mate.
    Rajan Hoole,is by no means an Expat: He is loitering in Jaffna!

    Siva.
    Rajan Hoole has been writing about the LTTE for quite a while now.From 1989?
    So being critical of the LTTE and their supporters does not make him a Human Being eh?

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