18 December, 2017

Blog

The Story Of Olive And Palm Trees Across The Fence

By Mahesan Niranjan

Prof Mahesan Niranjan

In 1984, in the southern Dutch city of Eindhoven, my drinking partner, the Sri Lankan Tamil fellow Sivapuranam Thevaram, met a Palestinian guy — the very first Palestinian Thevaram has ever met.  Their host in The Netherlands was the electronics company Phillips, well known for having invented the digital compact disc. The two men were at a welcome reception by a director of the company. Phillips, he claimed, was the largest manufacturer of light bulbs in the world. “Next to the sun, Phillips provides the most light,” he boasted. Abdul (not his real name) the Palestinian and Thevaram the Sri Lankan, sitting next to each other, laughed jointly and introduced themselves to each other.

Prior to arriving in Eindhoven, Thevaram, having been a student at HillTop University in Sri Lanka, had decent enough knowledge about the intricate politics of the world. He had read about the Second World War, the persecution of the Jews, the creation of a Jewish State in their “Promised Land,” the connivance of the super-powers in setting up an ever-lasting problem to guarantee a flow of oil wealth from East to West. Years later, when the USA invaded Iraq to teach them democracy, and a comment in the UK Guardian newspaper paraphrased the Bard to have said “Oils well that ends well,” Thevaram understood precisely what all that was about – proof that the 25 year old young man in 1984 had a pretty good idea about the Jews and the Palestinians.

But nothing had prepared Thevaram for what he learned from his new friend on the day of that reception at Phillips. When Abdul was young, his grandfather would take him on walks from the refugee camp they lived in. They would walk to the edge of the barbed wire fence that protected newly established Jewish settlements in the West Bank, and the old man would ask the grandson to look through the fence across the valley.

“Over there, near the water tank, you see, that was where we had our house.”

“Over there, near that sentry post, you see, there was a tall olive tree. Very tall.”

“Over there, where you see the young lady drawing water from the well, it is the same well I had built, long time before you were born.”

The old Palestinian man would go on and on and on, every day they took a walk.

A decade later, at a high table dinner in an ancient university in Bridgetown, UK, Thevaram was in conversation with a guest from an Israeli university. Professor Iceberg (not his real name) was full of energy in defending the ways of the Israeli government and its armed forces. All centred around the Holocaust and of some Arab leaders desiring the total destruction of the Jewish state. “This is the only country we have, Jews have nowhere else to go,” Iceberg had insisted.

 

After some patient listening, Thevaram told him his friend’s story. “Right now, as we speak, there are Palestinians who can identify land behind the barbed wires which their grandparents farmed,” Thevaram said. “Is it fair to take their private land and build settlements?” That Thevaram had knowledge of a specific private land from which the owners had been thrown out changed the tone of the discussion and Iceberg conceded there were elements of gross unfairness in the way his government behaved.

Let’s look at recent happenings in our country.

We have been through a deadly war. Over half the time since the Suddhas (white folk) left us to mind our own business, guns and bombs have dominated our lives. We have failed in addressing issues faced by our youth, we have waited till they rebelled, and we have killed them brutally in thousands. If we dig the ground in parts of our country, there is a higher probability of finding human skeletons than finding oil, or even water. But the war that ravaged our land is over, and has been for over four years.

Sure, some are celebrating victory eating kiribath (milk rice), and others sulking at defeat and arguing for revenge. But any sensible person would breathe a sigh of relief that the war had ended and at the same time feel an extreme sense of sadness at the enormous loss of life due to the particular way in which that end was played about. That sadness is amplified by attitudes shown post-war — those who govern us systematically sending messages to part of our people: “you don’t belong here.” When these signals are from racists at the fringes of the political spectrum, of course, we should ignore them. But when they are from representatives we have elected to govern us, shouldn’t we, as citizens, be worried?

We have seen during times of war, areas of no-man’s land being established as High Security Zones (HSZ) around army camps, heavily mined and providing the line of sight to shoot at the enemy before they got too close. We have also seen how these defences were breached in the most brutal manner, by waves of teenagers running across, blowing up the sentry posts, land mines and themselves. We saw this tactic practiced to precision in Mankulam, Mullaitheevu and Elephant Pass, executed by kids drawn mostly from poor families in the Eastern province — persuaded, brain-washed, cajoled, or forcibly conscripted into the fighting machine. It is mind-boggling to think that some still regard the planning and execution of all these as necessary acts of heroism, and would want to mark them with a remembrance day. Cynics are entitled to the view that these may indeed be acts needing celebration, given that the one who was expert at all this went on to become a minister in the government of our Democratic, Socialist country. If such brutality is so gruesome to discuss in a civilized forum like Colombo Telegraph, let us not start talking about the lion’s share here (no pun intended).

Family land inherited from grandparents has magical effect, my friend Thevaram once told me. The man was born in the little island of Karainagar, near Jaffna, and has now settled in far-away Bridgetown, UK. On a recent visit to Sri Lanka, he went on a day out at the Karainagar beach with Computer Science students from the University of Jaffna. Thevaram had insisted on diverting the bus, to make a short stop near the land his grandfather had owned. He sat on the well his grandfather had built and took a photograph. That evening, in extreme excitement, he emailed it to his cousin in Canada asking “Acca (sister), can you guess where I am sitting?” The cousin – grand-daughter of Thevaram’s grandfather, as you would have worked out by now – replied instantly in equal excitement recognizing the spot. The well and the background you see in the picture are no different from thousands of wells, yet his cousin who had not been to Karainagar for thirty five years recognized it in a fraction of a second.

Such is the power of your grandfather’s land.

Now WHY, we citizens should ask, four and a half years after the end of the war, a large army camp is still being maintained in the far North of our country, with a huge buffer zone around it?

Now WHY, we citizens should ask, the few remaining houses in that buffer zone are being bulldozed down, as their helpless owners watch from across the barbed wire fences?

Now WHY, we citizens should ask, should there be such arrogance that court cases on the subject can be ignored, confident of favourable ruling from friends in supreme places?

Now WHY, we citizens should ask, is it that we as a society are being so cruel in setting up a framework in which ten years from now, a Sri Lankan Tamil grandfather would take his little grandson for a walk up to those barbed wire fences in Valikamam North and entertain the kid with views through the fence?

“Over there, near the water tank, you see, that was where we had our house.”

“Over there, near that sentry post, you see, there was a tall palm tree. Very tall.”

“Over there, where you see the young lady drawing water from the well, it is the same well I had built, long time before you were born.”

The old Sri Lankan man will go on and on and on, every day they take a walk, just like Abdul’s grandfather had done several decades ago in Palestine.

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    Unfortunately the Army camp needs to be there until the open hostility and the encouragement for a separate state coming from the Diaspora is quelled.

    After losing SO many lives the state cannot leave room for another war and a repeat of the same circumstances.

    Concrete steps must be taken from Both sides.

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      Still trying tilting the windmill?

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        “The old Sri Lankan man will go on and on and on, every day they take a walk,” …..& talk the talk; walk the walk with meeeee?

        One’s own observation what she finds good of and what,
        she finds hurt of is the best- to preserve wealth and health.

        The desire of excessive power caused regimes to fall;
        the desire of knowledge caused men to fall.

        star ☆彡^5▬▬▬▬▬▬▬▬▬▬▬ஜ۩۞۩ஜ▬▬▬▬▬▬▬
        ENJOY THE MUSIC
        っ) っ) っ)
        ▬▬▬▬▬▬▬▬▬▬▬▬ஜ۩۞۩ஜ▬▬▬▬ star ☆彡^5

        Koththu:
        http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aYlmyf1a8rY

    • 0
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      Agree with DX.

      Mahesan Niranjan, how can you suggest that the security presence in the north and east of SL lands as identical to the intransigent, inhuman and illegal Israeli occupation of Palestinian territories?

      Painting emotional pictures to drive a false story is not funny. That is sheer intellectual dishonesty.

      Perhaps Mahesan Niranjan should ask his diaspora compatriots to rather stop these virulent attacks and spend their energies and money to develop the north and east of SL.

      That is a Tamil renaissance for which the Sinhalese lunatic fringe would have no answer.

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        The scale of what is happening in Jaffna is very different from Israel. But the way you refuse to see what is happening is exactly the same attitude any Israeli shows in how they defend actions of their government. This is disappointing.

        There are legal ways of taking over private land for nationally important purposes. This is routine, for example, when roads are widened. RDA engineers here will tell you that they re-build the walls and access culverts they push back to make way for roads. Hence you don’t hear people complaining about their private land being taken over for widening Palali Road in Jaffna — they generally accept it is for the common good. But Valikaman is just thuggery. It sends a clear message “we won you lost.” That is not from the fringes, it is the mainstream. This is sad.

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      Don Quixote,

      Without wishing to sound pessimistic no my friend I don’t hold out much hope for reconciliation in Sinhala Lanka for the following reasons.
      ***Accountability is a Pre Requisite to Reconciliation and we Tamils cannot move on until the perpetrators who are still in charge are punished. We Tamils are the victims not you lot so I don’t make any apology.
      If you belong to the camp of no Apology ( and from your following comment it is obvious the you are *** Unfortunately the Army camp needs to be there until the open hostility and the encouragement for a separate state coming from the Diaspora is quelled***) then we are not talking the same language you will see from my comments below to the writer why.

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    It seems the Govt and Armed forces are rubbing it in. They say ‘We have the power and we will do it. We dont care two hoots if it was your grandfathers property. This is our country and you have no rights’. Is this the way to maintain security, by alienating and harrassing people?

    People say that this is for security. But then there is more and enough state lands to develop without grabbing private lands which people have legally owned and lived for decades and centuries. Govt grabs land, the forces grab lands, priests grab lands, polticians grab lands. It seems that there is either a security zone or sacred area wherever minorities live.

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      Safa,

      Don’t worry when we have a Change at the top in India and if BJP win power the Iron Lady will have a formidable hold on power. If that happens and I am praying for it and the signs are good( Modi is Unstoppable and he and the Iron Lady are Bosom buddies) then the only thing that will be up for GRABS will be the NUTS of MR and his cronies.
      I cant wait for the nuts to crack which will be taped and played along the Tamil National Anthem. We will be singing AMUTHA GEETHAM.

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    An excellent piece. ‘open hostility’ and ‘encouragement from diaspora’ are irrelevant phrases. The diaspora is not in Sri Lanka-they do not live here,so their nostalgia is also irrelevant. Security must surely be maintained, but not on private land owned by people who live here. There is enough govt land for that purpose.

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      essie go Easy Man

      I knew you were stupid but I didnt think you were this Stuid. Just see if you can work this one out.

      Jewish Diaspora ( Dont live in Israel)
      – State of Israel
      – Existence and Dominance

      Tamil Diaspora ( Dont have to live in Eelam)
      – Elam which is in the making
      – Survival & Existence.

      See any relevance. May be not with your tiny brain and who can blame you.

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    Beautifully expressed and absolutely pertinent. Even an old armchair used by a father , mother or grandparents evokes powerful feelings. These anchor one to his/her roots. I cannot yet forgive those who stole the valuable library that was collected over time by my grandfather, father and added to by me, while I can forgive those who vandalised my house subsequently to sell parts thereof to feed themselves and their families during the hard times in Jaffna. The house that my father, mother, brothers and sisters lived in and where my mother and brother were murdered by the IPKF, which I rebuilt, is like a temple to me. The bougainvillaea tree my mother had planted 32 years ago in the garden near the gate and has survived the travails of the war, is a treasure to me and everyone in our family. When it fell recently during the heavy rains and strong winds, I was devastated. However, we anchored the tree with much effort and saved it. What was intriguing was that this tree fell on the 26th anniversary of my mother’s murder! A coincidence! Perhaps.

    I hope those who decide our fate in this land of ours will understand and respect the sentiments and concerns expressed by Prof. Niranjan.This blog touched a chord within me and I instantly identified myself to the sentiments expressed by the old Palestinian and ‘ Thevaram’.

    Dr.Rajasingham Narendran

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      ‘Thevaram’ is just a literary device Niranjan has been using to refer to himself since he started writing on Groundviews.

      Some of the people here and elsewhere who trot out various security excuses to justify the GoSL’s continuing, illegitimate land alienation in the North-East fail to grasp the subtext of this piece. Israel may occupy Palestinian land, but Israel will forever be under siege, and the Palestinians will continue to nurse their grievances and hatred; they will wait for their chance to give a mortal blow to Israel one day. Those who promote national security arguments fail to realize that the very security they seek will forever elude them unless they make serious efforts to return the lands that legitimately belong to the people.

      States may use ’eminent domain’ arguments in certain cases, but that is valid only if the state shows both a compelling necessity and compensates the affected people richly for it. GoSL’s actions don’t meet this criterion, and are illegitimate. The affected people, within and without SL, could well become radicalized and resort to previously unseen forms of resistance that could surprise the very proponents of national security.

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      RN

      Mementos are vivid reminders.

      We all have one memento or another to remind us emotionally of people and events of the past.

      Some memories are happy ones while others evoke sadness and anger.

      I was very deeply moved by your own personal experiences.

      My only grouse with Mahesan Niranjan’s otherwise excellent piece was that he was subtly trying to equate the military “presence” in the north and east of SL as akin to the forcible and illegal occupation of Palestinian territories by Israelis.

      While there may be real and imaginary social and political dimensions to military presence, it is only by a stretch of imagination could one describe the SL army as being in “occupation” of the north and east.

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    Wonder whether your drinking buddy Theva ask the Palestinian the following.

    Whether there are more Palestinians in TelAvive than in Gaza.

    Also whether over 30 percent of the TelAviv inhabitants are Palestinians, occupying premium real estate with expensive postcodes?.

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      Please acknowledge the difference between purchase of property and forced confiscation of ancestral properties. The Tamils in Colombo have not acquired anyone else’s property illegally or through unconscionable acquirements by the State. All the citizens in Sri Lanka have the right to buy property wherever they want and live there. However, whatever the legal garb, no one has the right to acquire anyone elses property by force under circumstances of war and try to legalise it through misuse of existing laws, supported by a system of Justice that is a misnomer.

      Will the fact that a fair number of Palestinians live within Israel, negate the rights of the Palestinians expelled from their lands by force and forced to live in refugee camps for generations? A fait accompli by force and through immoral application of law, will not make something immoral moral.

      Dr.Rajasingham Narendran

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        Palestinians ‘live’ in what are effectively concentration camps. They have no land rights and exist at the mercy of the military men in the area, ably assisted by the newcomers from Brooklyn who acquire land without payment. The titles the Palestinians hold are only as valuable as toilet paper.
        In Sri Lanka on the other hand any Tamil Sri Lankan can acquire land anywhere on the island by paying the going rate in the area. The same does not hold true for the Sinhala or the Muslims, as you well know.
        The purchase of property by the government for it’s needs to serve the public, whether ancestral or otherwise is no different in any other part of the country. ‘Eminent domain’ as it is described has NEVER been at the commercial rates and has been determined by some apparatchik from the colonial times. Unfortunately such practice still persists.

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        I just want to ask you, now everybody is shouting regarding the murder of 5 school children in Trincomalee. Why aren’t any of these people talking about how 2008 Fort Railway Station bombing killed eight school children of D. S. Senanayake College’s baseball team and their coach/teacher-in-charge?

        There are many powerful people and thousands of other people in Tamil Nadu, London, Toronto, Geneva and many other places who are burning midnight oil trying to bring justice to 5 kids in Trinco but who cares about the 8 kids who died in Colombo?

        The people who chipped in money to kill those children are still live and kicking abroad and that old man Sampanthan who said at that time LTTE was the sole representative of Tamils is still here in Colombo and Sumanthiran who is now an MP of that very same TNA is lecturing us on justice as if we were all born yesterday!

        See the kind of spineless cowards with no self-respect we Sinhalese are for allowing these buggers to live amongst us while mocking at our faces everyday?

        While you are lamenting about why you cannot live in the house your great great grandfather built, you mind want to watch some of the videos I post below which may jostle your mind back to recent past from the by gone days to explain to you why people who had their airports blasted, oil depots set on fire, trains bombed, buses bombed, central bank bombed, temple of tooth bombed, could care less about your grandfather’s house!

        While you are wondering why the military camps are there even after 4 years since the end of the war, how many years do you think it would take for people who were traumatized by this kind of deadly warfare right in the middle of their capital city to be assured the army camps need to be down scaled in the North?

        How much is the grandfather’s land and house worth compared to all the damage and carnage done by LTTE?

        Now, Channel 4 will never broadcast these videos even if we shove them down the throats of Callum Macrae and Jon Snow by our bare hands nor will GroundViews or CPA right here in Colombo.

        [Central Bank bombing]
        http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5IMTfImFCnI

        [LTTE air attack]
        http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0pHgz7tJYmM

        [Office Train Blast in Dehiwala]
        http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FoG23iR3tdc

        [Kattunayaka airport attack]
        http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=L72HNfhGkgA

        [Mt. Lavinia, Sri Lanka Bus Bomb – 23-02-2008]
        http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZCyZdpRHVD0

        [Bus bomb in Piliyandala during rush hour]
        http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5AFjs03CJYY

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          Navin,

          (a) From what I have read, the author of this article and Dr R Narendran have strongly criticized the LTTE for its terrorism, here and elsewhere. Read Mahesan’s article again — there are some sharp lines about LTTE. So please don’t lump everyone with the LTTE.

          (b) The LTTE was a terrorist organization, that is why the whole world banned them — and that ban was achieved by the hard work done by Kadirkamar, a Tamil. Sambanthan called them sole representatives when they held a gun to his head. Now the gun is gone, he doesn’t say that anymore. He is now happily waving the Sri Lankan lion flag!

          (c) The Sri Lankan government is a democratically elected government (so we would like to believe) — so it must have higher standards of behavior than the terror group LTTE. It must control its army in terms of international standards — not let them loose to behave like terrorists.

          (d) Our governments from both major parties (UNP during Premadasa times and the current government just before the 2005 elections) gave a lot of money (and Premadasa gave them arms also) to the LTTE. When the LTTE attacked the Central Bank, it is very likely they used guns given to them by Premadasa.

          (e) LTTE’s most successful military commander was Karuna; after he split, LTTE could not do any major attack; Karuna is said to have lined up and shot 600 policemen. Surely, that was as nasty as the central bank bombing. He is now a member of the government. Why is he not on trial?

          (f) LTTE’s biggest fundraiser was KP. He is now best friend with the government. We have no idea in whose hands all the money he collected now is. Why is he not on trial?

          Which of (b)-(f) did you not know before?

          The discussion now should be about the future of the country. What sort of future are we going to build without rule of law — whether it is in Welikamam in north or Weliweriya in south?

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          QQ Why aren’t any of these people talking about how? QQ

          Because you are not Japan that massacred the whole of asia ww2.
          Those who deny individual rights cannot claim to be defenders of minorities.

          I can’t stand whining.

          Hatred is a very underestimated emotion!

          */*
          (’-’*); :っ)

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      Where did you get your information? The numbers are incorrect. 20 percent of Palestinians live in Israel (not only in Tel Aviv) Here is an excerpt from an article in the New York Times, written by a Palestinians living in Israel, and it is not as rosy as you make out. Not only that, but Israel keeps stealing more and more disputed land OUTSIDE their territories.

      “Today, a Jew from any country can move to Israel, while a Palestinian refugee, with a valid claim to property in Israel, cannot. And although Palestinians make up about 20 percent of Israel’s population, the 2012 budget allocates less than 7 percent for Palestinian citizens.

      Tragically for Palestinians, Zionism requires the state to empower and maintain a Jewish majority even at the expense of its non-Jewish citizens, and the occupation of the West Bank is only one part of it. What exists today between the Jordan River and the Mediterranean Sea is therefore essentially one state, under Israeli control, where Palestinians have varying degrees of limited rights: 1.5 million are second-class citizens, and four million more are not citizens at all. If this is not apartheid, then whatever it is, it’s certainly not democracy.”

      The Palestinian people keep suffering.

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      Sumansekara,

      It is the same stupid argument you lot are putting forward in Sinhala Lanka. But there is a basic difference.
      In Israel both sides claim the same piece of Land where as in Sri Lanka we claim different pieces of Land.
      The only reason why we are in the South is because you lot never developed the North so we have become totally dependent on the Industries and offices which are concentrated in Sinhala Lanka. The GDP from the North Accounts for a mere 5% and when we develop the North which will happen the Tamils will return home to the North.

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        Your comment amply demonstrate whose argument is stupidest.
        First tell us why the Sinhalese politicians should develop the north if the Tamil politicians are not interested in doing it?
        Then tell us how many industries are there in the deep south and how many in the north? compare the same for other facilities such as educational,Also
        In Israel,they confiscate Palestinian land to permanently settle migrant Jews where as in Sri Lanka it is acquired for security purposes which means these lands could be returned,if not all at least some of them to their legitimate owners in a future date.

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    The answer is simple,the Palestenians live there because they consider Telaviv their land and Jerusalem their capital.

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      Do Sri Lankan Tamils feel that Colombo is their capital? I doubt it.

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        They know that Sri Lankas’s capital is Colombo, the capital city of the Northern Povince is Jaffna, the capital city of the Eastern Province is Trincomalee , the capital city of the Souhern Province is Galle, etc, , etc.
        Please do not create illusions and be deluded by them. We Tamils were deluded by the illusions created by the LTTE and paid a rather heavy price.

        Dr. RN.

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          Dr,

          CORRECTION

          May be you were deluded by the LTTE but the vast majority of the Tamils were not deluded and that is why why they voted in massive numbers for the LTTE message.
          Dont be deluded.

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        No Pen We dont and we never will.

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          Then you can not surely expect to be treated as a Sri Lankan and therefore with equality. And Dr.RN, as long as people of Kali’s ilk are around reconciliation will be a very tough ask and may not be achieved until and unless they get over their hurt pride and ego and accept the reality.
          The attitude of blaming the other for all ills and pretend that we are blameless is exactly the turkey attitude. Sooner every one owns up to their mistakes the earlier a peaceful settlement achieved.
          The endless blame game and the unquenchable thirst for revenge will achieve nothing but further misery for the people.

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    Now WHY, we citizens should ask, four and a half years after the end of the war, a large army camp is still being maintained in the far North of our country, with a huge buffer zone around it?

    I believe Prof. Niranjan understand the nuances of the problem well. He is only making an earnest appeal to the people in power to be more considerate in their decision making. I hope I’m right.

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      QQ I hope I’m right QQ
      #

      Natosis,

      Run until you get a stitch (’-’*)

      (゜゜)~ anyone who lives on garlic should live alone.

      *

      0:3

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    very emotional write up. Gov should try to release land in North to people as much as possible.

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    I see the similarities between the Palestinian people and the Tamil people. In the North, the Tamils are being marginalized, harassed, and their weakened state after the LTTE was destroyed, taken advantage of.
    Israel, one of the most disliked nations in the world, keeps stealing land for thousands of illegal settlement homes, they control Palestinian water, the Palestinian people are blockaded, have to go through unnecessary check points, the farmers have their orchards destroyed, decades old olive trees stolen and planted in Israeli streets, fishing restricted, over 700 of their children in Israeli jails, abused, with no legal representation, and unable to see their families, all crimes documented and condemned by the UN, and the list goes on. That is a military occupation, in Sri Lanka, the Tamil people suffer with no legal recourse within their own country, no voices to speak up for the rapes, harassment, stolen lands, and a government that is not accountable for the thousands missing. Whether it is a Palestinian life, or a Tamil life, the Israeli and Sri Lankan government act like these lives are cheap and of no consequence. The world looks the other way, while these people suffer in various degrees, under ruthless governments.

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    “Perhaps Mahesan Niranjan should ask his diaspora compatriots to rather stop these virulent attacks and spend their energies and money to develop the north and east of SL.” – MNZ.
    Good, but the Regime does not want this to happen, as evidenced by the
    “hold” placed on dual-citizenship, even during times of peace. It has
    been so since Jany.2011 after MRs debacle at Oxford!
    A structured-genocidal activity is hidden in this move is now proven.

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    This is a link to what is now known as the shrinking map of Palestine. It show how this land, from the time the homeless europeans were placed there after the holocaust, have become small parcels of land, the vast amounts of lands that once belonged to them, have now been stolen, brazenly, by a brutal occupying force, despite world condemnation. The UN has predicted that by 2020 the Palestinian territories will be unlivable.
    The Israeli master plan of confiscation of land, bulldozing of Palestinian homes, terrorizing of civilians, have worked well, by the occupying force falsely crying victim.

    http://www.thehypertexts.com/Nakba%20Holocaust%20Palestinians%20Parables%20of%20Zion.htm

    One day, we will be seeing similar maps showing the marginalizing of the Tamil people, perhaps on a smaller scale.

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    Prof,

    At least for a change you talking some sense and that may be because you haven’t met your Thevaram Friend in the Pub in Brixton so not heavily intoxicated.

    There are similarities with the Palestinian suffering and Tamil suffering but there are also a lot things on which we differ and have an advantage.

    I am not sure if you have ever read the Article in Tamil ” Namkoru Nadu ” which talked about exactly the same thing.

    The Similarity:

    1) We both are a persecuted race and have suffered years of injustice and atrocities.
    2) Our land is occupied and colonised and continued to suffer abuse.

    Difference:

    a)The Palestinians are up against a Formidable enemy ( If you want to call the Israelis their enemy) with an unquestionable support of the only Super Power with a powerful Jewish Lobby which no one can afford to Challenge both in terms of their hold on power and Financial Institutions through out the World.

    ***The Land of Israel is explicitly referred in the Tanakh as “holy land” in only one passage, in Zechariah . The holiness of the Land is generally implied in the Tanakh by the Land being given to the Israelites by God, that is, it is the “promised land,” an integral part of God’s covenant.

    b) The justification by the Israelis to claim the Holy Land and to annex the Occupied West Bank.

    The Tamils on the other hand don’t face such heavy odds against them and the Sinhalese have no Historical claim on Tamil Land other than a wish to convert Sri Lanka in to Sinhala Lanka. But I am confident that is not going to happen.
    Our problems were through a combination of factors starting with Independence.
    1) The British when they gave Independence should have Guaranteed self rule for the Tamils as was the case before the Portuguese colonised.
    2) The failure by the successive Sinhalese Governments to recognise the existence of two distinct races and to devolve power.

    The discrimination and the atrocities by the Majority Sinhalese created the LTTE and finally the failure by the Regional Power India to resolve the issue for reasons we all know has prolonged the agony.

    But our strength lies in our close relationship with 80 million Tamils who are our saviours unlike the Palestinians who don’t have such luxury.
    Our problem is only temporary and as soon as we have a change at the top in India the Tamil fortunes will change.
    We have already seen some changes due the pressure on MR by the current rulers which is politicking but nevertheless things are moving in the right direction.

    I disagree with the writer on the following and I am full of hope for the future. The only time I will have serious doubts about the following scenarios not being reversed is if Congress is returned to power in the same form.

    “Over there, near the water tank, you see, that was where we had our house.”

    “Over there, near that sentry post, you see, there was a tall palm tree. Very tall.”

    “Over there, where you see the young lady drawing water from the well, it is the same well I had built, long time before you were born.”

    The old Sri Lankan man will go on and on and on, every day they take a walk, just like Abdul’s grandfather had done several decades ago in Palestine.

    The only Nation that can dictate and enforce policies in Sri Lanka is India as Sri Lankas Sovereignty is limited to India Security.

    There will no doubt be further misery for Tamils for a few more months but things will begin to change by March 2014 of which I am VERY CONFIDENT .

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    As long as T/ diaspora spread poison on their owen people the Army will not only stay but it will have to increase its strength not only to face the LTTE but also to Tamilnad thugs. If indea or even Jayalalith thinks that she could come to Jaffna and rule it would be a big mistake. dont forget they came in 87 and steel your juwelary, rape your mothers and sisters. You know what so called Diaspora did nothing to stop that!!!
    Sri Lankan president is so nice to spend lot of Sinhales tax payers money to rhabilitate and develop north.
    If Tamil Diaspora is not involved Sri Lanka would be a paradise for Sri Lankan Tamils who live their.

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      Nalin you Moron,

      Dont worry we will use Robotic Arms to shake hands accross the bared wire which will sepearate Eelam from Sinhala Lanka after Mr.Clean & Iron Lady take over.
      Do you remeber 1988 when you were invaded. The Tamil Nadu Army ( TNA) are coming Man. FRIGHTENING isnt it.

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    Given his revolutionary credentials, I would be very interested to hear what Dr. DJ’s response to this noble, heartfelt article is. Dr. MN is the most erudite, articulate and relevant commentator on the Tamil cause that I have had the pleasure of reading. I sincerely hope that the right people are listening. What a quantum leap in quality from the usual halfwit commentators like Kiruba, Latheef etc.

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    The smart-ass comments do nothing to ensure lasting peace. However, here is a point of view by an officer’s brother, a Sinhalese:

    http://www.indikadefonseka.com/my-brother-jani-a-portrait-of-a-real-life-jason-bourne/

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      Aruna,

      The last paragraph of the badasses brother sums it up up.
      There is no humanity in Sinhala Lanka so we are never going to win. It is as simple as that.

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      (゜゜)~ Aruooooo,

      “Hatred does not cease by hatred, but only by love; this is the eternal rule.” Mahawamse

      Udey malupan is a good breakfast, but it is a bad supper…..:*

      Impossible: to love and to be wise. Loveeee, love is blind! Faith is slavery.

      0:3 ~゜・_・゜~  :*

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