Ilankai Tamil Sangam

24th Year on the Web

Association of Tamils of Sri Lanka in the USA

Eelam Tamils after the End of Eelam War 4

by S. Makenthiran, September 27, 2009

The concept of Eelam has suffered a severe setback in Sri Lanka, but it is very much in the hearts and minds of Tamils throughout the world, including a good percentage of Tamil Nadu Tamils and some Indians outside Tamil Nadu. There are some stooges of stooges around the world who express a different opinion, of bowing to the victors and paying obeisance.  However, such stooges are a small minority.

The defeat of the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam on or around May 17, 2009 marked the end of Eelam War 4 and the complete conquest of Eelam by the Singhalese-dominated Sri Lanka government. Two and a half decades of Tamil armed resistance thus came to an end. The Tamils, before the armed rebellion started, had been subjected to repeated racial attacks by the Singhalese mobs and armed forces. These attacks culminated in 1983, when around 3,000 Tamils were massacred  throughout the country, and 90% of  their property in Singhalese majority areas destroyed.  Non-violent agitation by Tamils for over 35 years was brutally crushed by the Singhalese.

The entire LTTE leadership were killed or captured by the triumphant Singhalese armed forces in May.  The defeat of the Tamil Tigers sent shock waves throughout the Eelam Tamil nation within and outside Sri Lanka.  While it was known that the LTTE was retreating and cornered, Tamils did not expect  the LTTE to give up the fight.  The LTTE in the conduct of the war, committed the blunder of taking the civilians with them on their retreat, even when cornered in Mullaitivu.  This made it possible for the Sri Lankan government to intern the surrendering Tamil civilians of about 300,000 in concentration camps behind barbed wires and armed Singhalese guards.  The innocent Tamils thus fell from the frying pan into the fire.

The defeat of the Tigers can be attributed to many causes.  The defection of Karuna and Pillayan of the Eastern Province, the hostility of the foreign countries and the banning of Tigers in many of them, the help given to the Sri Lankan state by many countries including India, Pakistan, China, Iran, Libya etc., and the intelligence services given by India were some of the reasons.  The tactical errors of the LTTE fighting the IPKF and the assassination of Rajiv Gandhi, cost the Tamils dearly.  The presence of the IPKF in Northeast would have saved the Eelam Tamils from much loss of life and property at the hands of the Singhalese, and prevented the demerging of the Northern and Eastern provinces.

As the LTTE has been completely eliminated, the disputes as to whether Prabaharan, Pottuamman and Soosai are alive or dead is not of much consequence. As leaders of the Tamil Eelam nation,  it is presumed that they would not have escaped, abandoning  the   LTTE fighters to the tender mercies of the Singhalese army.  The kidnapping of KP and handing him over to GOSL, is an act of ignominy that can only happen in a country where there is no law and order. KP’s foolishness and recklessness also contributed to his downfall.  It is highly unlikely that this could happen in a civilized country.

The concept of Eelam has suffered a severe setback in Sri Lanka, but it is very much in the hearts and minds of Tamils throughout the world, including a good percentage of Tamil Nadu Tamils and some Indians outside Tamil Nadu. There are some stooges of stooges around the world who express a different opinion of bowing to the victors and paying obeisance.  However, such stooges are a small minority.

We Tamils have to do a two-pronged drive towards achieving Tamil Eelam.  We have to support the Provisional Transnational Government of Tamil Eelam under the indomitable Visvanathan Rudrakumar, to keep the flame burning till a suitable time dawns.  At the same time the Tamil Diaspora should have a powerful unified organization to lobby for and represent Tamil people in Sri Lanka as is being done by the Global Tamil Forum.  The Tamils in SL have been effectively silenced and made voiceless by draconian laws and army occupation.  It is only the Tamil Diaspora that can agitate for Tami rights and separation.

We Tamils should avoid divisions and bickering and present a united front. We should not be seen to be involved with the LTTE as it is banned in many countries.  To circumvent the ban we have to operate free from the LTTE  and start with a clean slate.  We must avoid the past mistakes of  the LTTE.  We have to win the support off the international community, including India.

There are some matters that require immediate attention.  (1.) The concentration camps have to be closed, the sooner the better as our people are going through untold suffering. Every day counts.  The world is aware, but unfortunately not sufficient action has been taken. The Tamil Diaspora should strive incessantly to get the Tamil civilians released from the camps.  (2.) The Sri Lankan government should be boycotted by refusing all SL goods and services and their economic power weakened, as it is used to oppress Tamils. (3.) The Tamil Diaspora should lobby the civilized countries to impose economic sanctions and travel bans to isolate Sri Lanka.  Sri Lanka should be forced to revoke the terrorism acts, allow free reporting by the media, and free all Tamil prisoners held without trial. All those guilty of war crimes against innocent Tamil civilians should be brought to trial and punished.

We Eelam Tamils have to bear in mind that the active involvement of Chennai and Delhi is vital for the liberation of Eelam.  We Tamils should always remember that our Tamil-speaking people number about 70 million spread far and wide constituting an international community and cannot be written of as hoped by the Singhalese. Tamils are not history as claimed by the SL High Commissioner to UK  on  the BBC.

Already the Singhalese, in a fit of triumphalism are challenging India. A Singhalese writer, L. Jayasuriya, in the pro-Singhalese website Asian Tribune, recently envisaged an alliance of Sri Lanka with China and Pakistan against India.  It is high time that Indians realized who their friends are and who their enemies.  Singhalese are anti-Indian to the core.  Tamils look up to India, as mother India, as we are deeply connected linguistically, religiously and culturally.

Singhalese have planted a large number of Chinese on SL soil.  They want to plant Pakistani troops also in Eelam, on the pretext of giving them training in anti- guerilla warfare. What an irony. This is like thethief when caught up a coconut tree trying to steal coconuts, who claimed that he climbed up to cut grass for his cow.  Singhalese are now imagining that they are the best army in the world.  In their arrogance and vanity they have begun to antagonise India, the EU, America, Australia and other powerful countries.

Sooner or later, India and the Singhalese-dominated Sri Lanka will be on a collision course.  Eelam and Upcountry Tamils and all Tamil-speaking people should struggle against Singhalese racism  unitedly.  Change of government in Tamil Nadu and Delhi  will help us immensely, as Congress hands are tainted with Eelam Tamil blood.

It is my considered opinion that  Eelam Tamils should  opt for a federation with India as  a separate state of the Indian Union, similar to Tamil Nadu, Pondicherry, Goa and other numerous states,  with our  own Chief Minister, Legislature and police force.  Eelam Tamils should first realize the need for this and start agitating from all over the world.  We must convince India of the mutual benefit that would arise from this implementation of the idea of federation with India.

Eelam Tamils should shed their foolish and shortsighted  insular attitude even at this stage, and consider long term solutions to their problems.  Even assuming we do get Eelam, the presence of the Indian army is necessary to safeguard us against the predatory Singhalese. 

Our people have to be saved from the concentration camps.  Already they have suffered terribly for four months under Singhalese tyranny.  Ever day counts.

We will always have Karunas, Pillayans, Devanandas and Sangarees.  This is part of Tamil nature from the time of Vibishnan, who betrayed his brother Ravanan, the Great Tamil king of Lanka, to the invaders. Mark me, our Eelam borders are  too long and porous to be defended against the numerically far superior Singhalese who outnumber us 1 to 8, and who will always be our perpetual enemies.  We cannot scream for help from India every time we are attacked by the Singhalese.

A free Eelam federated with India as a separate state will ensure peace, prosperity and development, which has been denied to us from the date of independence.