Friday, March 13, 2015

Dr. Radhika Coomaraswamy - Beyond Genocide

Radhika Coomaraswamy has written an excellent piece that should be read and digested by all Tamils, particularly the politicians and the diaspora.

Unfortunately this has been misunderstood by many. Even more thoughtful commentors such as Charles Sarvan  still view the argument from an academic or legal perspective- the very thing that Miss Coomaraswamy argues against.

What is necessary is an assessment of the real ground situation in Sri Lanka, what is happening and what may practically be expected to happen. 

There is a new Government in Sri Lanka which has started to take some positive steps towards Tamil issues. They may be small, but remember that they have only been in office for about 50 days and that they are a rather shakey coalition who are under attack by extremists and elements of the former regime.

The resolution passed by the Northern Proncial Council and similar pressure tactics can be used to by the extremists to undermine and overthrow the new Government.

The recapture of the Sri Lankan state by the extremists will lead to an immediate crackdown on all liberals and harsh repression of all minorities. The extremists are smarting from defeat which they are blaming squarely on the minorities.

If they ever come back to office they will extract a painful vengence from those who helped eject them-particularly the Tamils but also the Muslims and the liberal Sinalese who were associated with this Government.

A return of the extremists will mean:
1. No movement whatsover on any war crimes or any other inquiry. Sri lanka will go the way of Zimbabwe or North Korea rather than submit to an international inquiry.
2. Further suppression to eliminate any future threats, real or imaginary, from the Tamils and minorities .
3. Vengence - which will be coupled with (2) above, in order to extract punishment for ejecting them from office. This can take many different forms, you can let your imagination run on this.

Overall things will be infinitely worse for all Tamils and all minorities.

Why then are they doing stupid things that can see the ejection of a more moderate Government?

In whose interests is this? For the diaspora Tamils, living overseas it may make seem like a fine opportunity to strike. For the Tamils living in Sri Lanka it will be a disaster.

In trying to redeem the dead, they condemn the living.

Remember that it was Prabhakaran who elected MR To power in 2005, by preventing Tamils from voting. The moderates were ejected and extremists installed because it seemed like a good strategy. What a brilliant idea that was.

We saw how that ended up. Ten years later they want to follow the same strategy? Have they learned nothing, absolutely nothing from history?

The new Government has signaled good intent and taken steps in the right direction. They have shown willingness to engage so by all means engage, but don't rock the boat. Give them some space to manoeuvre.

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