Ilankai Tamil Sangam

24th Year on the Web

Association of Tamils of Sri Lanka in the USA

An Open Letter to the US Ambassador

by Prof. Aaron Rajah, San Diego, California

All in all, it is about time American actions reflect your political statements. Platitudes alone will not resolve a conflict of more than 25 years. Help the starving Tamils in Vakari. Demand that all civilian killings be stopped; yes, Tamils do live in Sri Lanka, too.

Dear Mr. Blake,

I am once again writing to you regarding your one-sided view of the killing of the Tamil people in Sri Lanka.

I reviewed your recent statement on the killing of civilians. It is clear that the only time you come out with condemnation is when civilians from the island's majority population who control the government, the Sinhalese, are killed.

In your latest statement on January 9, 2007, you claimed, “Attacks that deliberately target civilians are clear acts of terrorism. The United States extends its deepest sympathy to the families of the victims.”

It was sad that not a single condemnation was made concerning the recent Air Force bombings of civilian targets in Mannar on January 5, 2007 in which innocent children and their parents lost their lives.

Your representation of the American people’s value of life is tarnished when you take sides over the deaths of civilians in this part of the world. While death does not discriminate, you have decided to discriminate death itself.

In your statement you continue:

“We reiterate that there can be no military solution to this conflict. 25 years of terrorism has not improved the lives of the Tamil people. Similarly, the on going violence in Vakarai has caused significant hardship for Sri Lankans living in that area. The solution in our view lies in a negotiated settlement that meets the aspirations of all of Sri Lanka’s communities – Sinhalese, Tamil, and Muslim. The current APRC process and the SLFP-UNP agreement to cooperate on the peace process mark a significant opportunity to develop a power sharing proposal that can form the basis for renewed peace talks.”

  • While you give lip service that there cannot be a military solution, you continue to arm and train Sri Lankan military forces under the pretext of counterterrorism assistance and thereby continue the saga of the killing of Tamil civilians.
  • While claiming violence has caused hardship in Vakarai, you fall short of giving food for the starving Tamils in Vakarai; once again, it is not the lip service, but the action that speaks much louder. Your political statements do not give any food for starving Tamils in Vakari.
  • While you claim 25 years of terrorism has not gone anywhere, you fail to mention that 25 years of power-sharing attempts and non-implementation of accords by the racist Sinhala government have not gone anywhere either. While you continue to request the acceleration of power-sharing with the Tamils by the Sinhala racists, you fail to give the opportunity to struggle for their freedom to the minority Tamils. This is quite biased and immoral in the view of the American people.

All in all, it is about time American actions reflect your political statements. Platitudes alone will not resolve a conflict of more than 25 years. Help the starving Tamils in Vakari. Demand that all civilian killings be stopped; yes, Tamils do live in Sri Lanka, too.

Sincerely,
Professor Aaron Rajah
San Diego, California
The United States of America