Feature Article

'Three insults to Tamils for the traditional New Year'

[TamilNet, Sunday, 12 April 2009, 19:32 GMT]
Disguised insults meant against Tamil struggle this week bring out a picture of the attitudes operating in Colombo, New Delhi and Chennai, writes a political analyst in Colombo. “It is not exactly the Sri Lankan government, but the Sri Lankan state that is the core symbol of oppression in the island. Ethnic chauvinism is the cornerstone of this state. No liberation can come to Eezham Tamils unless this symbol is deconstructed. It is important for both Tamils and Sinhalese to see that accepting this symbol as it is now, or imposing this symbol as the basis of any political discourse, will never pave way for peace of both.”

Full text of the article follows:

The will power of Eezham Tamils and their fighters, the diaspora youth uprising and the unprecedented solidarity shown by the diaspora community to the cause of Eezham Tamils have made the war partners to respond with disguised insults to the Tamil struggle in recent days.

The first of it comes from Sri Lanka’s president Mahinda Rajapaksa.

Mr. Rajapaksa announced a mockery of a ceasefire for 48 hours from Monday, for the ‘entrapped’ civilians to celebrate the traditional New Year that falls on Tuesday.

“The president is deeply conscious of the need to give the civilian population entrapped as hostages by the ruthless action of the LTTE the opportunity to celebrate these festivities”, a statement from Rajapaksa said on Sunday.

The insulting ‘festival diplomacy’ announcement of Rajapaksa was aiming for the imprisonment of civilians by the state, calling for the LTTE to accept defeat, renounce ‘terrorism and violence’ permanently and was threatening that the war will continue until securing complete surrender of the Tigers.

It is actually a frustrated sarcasm that is reflected in the insult, because Rajapaksa knows very well that none of his expectations will take place in the way he likes.

The second insult is from the Indian Establishment, the war partner of Colombo.

New Delhi, the ‘agenda setting’ war partner of Colombo that has tremendously contributed to the misery of Tamils, at the tail end of its tenure, has invited the TNA for talks with one of its bureaucrats on Wednesday.

The insulting part is that this government, which never wanted to call off the war and which was priding itself of ‘true friendship’ with Colombo, calling the TNA one day before voting begins to elect the next government. It can always come out with excuses for not being able to commit to any policy decisions now but to continue with what has been set already.

Even though it is not a caretaker government, as the elections are conducted before the expiry of its term, the government is bound by certain protocols during times of election. It is also not supposed to take any important move influencing the electioneering.

However, as Sri Lanka is not handled by the Indian parliament but by a few extra-parliamentary elements, the manoeuvres can proceed unhindered.

The efforts of these elements at this juncture is to blackmail the Tamil leadership, put a hook and to create an image of success in their two-decades old venture of nullifying Eezham Tamil nationalism by effectuating a post-LTTE era.

It is also to indirectly influence the elections, particularly in Tamil Nadu, where the voting takes place in the last lag, on May 13th. The aim is to send a message to the voters that their coming back to power is important to the ‘constructive phase’ of Eezham Tamils.

The third insult has come from M. Karunanidhi, the chief minister of Tamil Nadu.

Quite typical of his disgusting way of personal attack, as though he was exposing Jeyalalithaa and as though he was supporting the Eezham Tamil cause, Karunanidhi has brought in an insulting metaphor on Pirapaharan and on the struggle of Eezham Tamils.

Karunanidhi in a meeting in Chennai last Thursday urged that Mahinda Rajapaksa, like Alexander the Great treating the captured Porus, the king of Indus (with respect), should treat Pirapaharan if he is captured.

Rather than arguing for the cause of Eezham Tamils Karunanidhi is at writing a ‘conclusion’, said PMK leader Ramadoss.

By that speech, Karunanidhi in fact wanted to imply that he was better than Jeyalalithaa who some years back had asked for the arrest and penalisation of Pirapaharan.

But, either the poet-politician has slipped in his mastery of poetics or he was deliberate at the insult.

Needless to say that the three disguised insults bring out the picture of the attitudes operating against Eezham Tamil aspirations in Colombo, New Delhi and Chennai.

Symbols are of utmost importance in a struggle.

Subjugation through symbols is worse than physical subjugation.

Tamils everywhere need to take care of negotiating three issues of symbolic importance at the moment:

The present war being waged against Tamils, reaching a stage of multifaceted genocide in the island was perpetrated upon them in an unjustifiable and treacherous way by certain powers, misled by a thinking discredited now.

It is important not only for the Eezham Tamils but also for the entire human civilization that these powers should eat humble pie by calling off the war.

The war is definitely not the wish of the people of India.

A biased few, who have hijacked the Indian parliament, are waging a covert war against Eezham Tamils, disregarding mass demands of their own people. They have not achieved anything either for Tamils or for Indian national interests, other than escalating the crisis.

It is important that the people of India, especially the people of Tamil Nadu should teach a lesson for them in the elections that no Indian government should hereafter think of meddling with Tamil affairs or with the wishes of people in extra parliamentary ways.

It is not exactly the Sri Lankan government, but the Sri Lankan state that is the core symbol of the oppression of Tamils in the island. Ethnic chauvinism is the cornerstone of this state. No liberation can come to Eezham Tamils unless this symbol is deconstructed.

It is important for both Tamils and Sinhalese to see that accepting this symbol or imposing this symbol, as it is now, as the basis of any political discourse, will never pave way for peace of both.

It is also important that the TNA should take a collective decision at this juncture on the question of presenting itself in New Delhi, and on what it has to present, if it has already decided to go.



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