The Sri Lankan regime has carried out repression against the Tamil people — a minority nationality on the island — for decades, and this article from a Ceylonese Maoist leader outlines how the LLRC (copy of the commission’s report), a “truth and reconciliation commission” set up by the regime, has served as an effort to whitewash the government’s history of attacks on the masses. The question of national liberation (as among the Terai people in Nepal or adivasis in
India) is a central concern of communist revolutionaries in many places in the world.
“If the war on the side of the Regime and the State was
waged based on a political ideology and an accompanying military doctrine aimed at militarily liquidating the LTTE, along with its political-military leadership, and to annihilate the political status of the Tamil nation, if the war was waged under a military
doctrine with no regard for collateral damage in order to achieve this
objective; and with that, to consolidate a Sinhala-Buddhist
hegemonic-chauvinist-militarist State that would feed into the
political agenda of perpetuating the Rajapakse dynastic regime,
then the war itself is on trial.”
The original post appeared at Democracy and Class Struggle. Thanks to Joseph for pointing it out, and writing the introduction.
The LLRC Report: A Process of Reconciliation or Perpetuation of a
Dynastic Military Junta?
December 29, 2011
by Surendra Ajit Rupasinghe, Secretary, Ceylon Communist Party – Maoist
The LLRC Report has served to polarize an already, irrevocably, polarized society, placed barriers in bringing about reconciliation and opened the country to even more foreign intervention. Here was a golden opportunity for the State and the Regime to come clean, on which basis the bridges of reconciliation could have been built and all foreign powers that intend to pursue their geo-political agendas by exploiting the situation would have been silenced. This issue affects all of us. It is our collective honor and dignity that is at stake. As citizens, as the supreme People of Lanka, we do not want our country to be seen as a morally degenerate banana republic. The country belongs to us, its citizens. It cannot be held hostage to any particular political agenda or regime. This issue affects our collective moral conscience, our shared sense of justice, our collective identity as a civilized human community. Therefore, we must pursue the debate, however consequential it may be.Why could not the LLRC be constituted by eminent and trusted citizens of all nationalities and communities, instead of servants of the State and the regime, that is itself part of the investigation? Why could it not have been constituted with the participation and observation of eminent and trusted international personalities that have neither truck with foreign powers nor the regime? These questions have to be addressed with honesty and integrity.
What is at issue is not only whether any particular alleged violation did take place and who ultimately should be accountable up the line of command, including both the Regime and the LTTE leadership. This core issue is fundamental to the process of reconciliation with justice, and to our future as a united, civilized nation. The issue is also whether the particular political ideology and agenda, and the military doctrine that logically flowed from it, that inspired and led the war, are accountable for an even more perfidious crime than the alleged crimes already identified. This question is of paramount import since the political agenda and the military doctrine itself is being auctioned as a model of counter-insurgency, and is being applied by the Indian State against the Maoist insurgency throughout the “Red Corridor”.
If the war on the side of the Regime and the State was waged based on a political ideology and an accompanying military doctrine aimed at militarily liquidating the LTTE, along with its political-military leadership, and to annihilate the political status of the Tamil nation;
if the war was waged under a military doctrine with no regard for collateral damage in order to achieve
and with that, to consolidate a Sinhala-Buddhist hegemonic-chauvinist-militarist State that would feed into the political agenda of perpetuating the Rajapakse dynastic regime, then the war itself is on trial
. Then, the prosecution
of all allegations of war crimes and atrocities achieve overriding political and moral legitimacy, and have to be accounted for in the name of our collective civilized existence, honor and justice. If the war was waged as a war of military conquest and political subjugation, as opposed to a war to establish ground conditions for a negotiated peace, then the political, ideological, psychological and moral bases would have ensured
the perpetration of the identified alleged crimes and atrocities, since it would have been waged against an enemy nation
, as opposed to a particular organization. It is within this political context and situational matrix that the LTTE is also to be held accountable for its crimes against humanity, including war crimes!
The facts on the ground attest to this political agenda of national subjugation and military conquest. The political status of the Tamil nation has been deleted from the political discourse and the Tamil people have been brought under military rule. There would be no political solution ever that accords dignity, equality, security, autonomy and democratic freedom to the Tamil people as a nation. There would only be the manipulations and procrastinations just to perpetuate the military conquest and occupation and keep the Regime alive and perpetuated. As it is, frontline Ministers have declared their intention to oppose and sabotage any form of devolution or power-sharing with Tamils. A situation is being created where a whole new wave of anti-Tamil violence could be unleashed, that would make Black July look white! Again, all those who stand with the Tamil nation and seek to share this Land with them as equals would be hounded, terrorized, abducted and murdered. Read the lines. Mainline Ministers, media institutions and far away ambassadors join in denying the political status of the Tamil nation. Some argue, in Neanderthal fashion, that there is no Tamil nation that has been officially recognized by any international agency! How asinine! How blatantly supremacist. The language of the unrepentant Oppressor! By the way, Sir, nations are forged in struggle, and not according to text books and international prescriptions and formulas. In one stroke, the national liberation struggles of the oppressed people of Kashmir, Assam, Nagaland are to be obliterated. How did East Timor – Achec- gain recognition as a nation, or even South Sudan and Norway? The US itself was forged as a nation through a separatist war, a war of independence. Recognition of the right
of self-determination is NOT a recipe for separation, nor is separation the only solution to national oppression, but the only guarantee for a lasting democratic union. It is the violent – terrorist suppression of this fundamental democratic right that has given birth to the politics of “separatist terrorism” in Sri Lanka. The war of military conquest and political subjugation has served to only to drive the aspiration for Tamil independence underground, where it may take deep root and sprout anew with renewed vigor and force.
The Rajapakse regime claimed that the war was waged with “zero civilian casualties”. Why does it now acknowledge, under the sanction of the LLRC and mounting international pressure, that; “ok, there could have been some civilian casualties and some atrocities”. Why is that it is only when pressure mounts and the blood-drenched rag is being disrobed, that the rulers admit? And then pass it off as insignificant aberrations on the part of some errant soldiers to be investigated and prosecuted by the same regime, and its own corrupt law-enforcement – judicial apparatus. This is the unconscionable role of the LLRC, to pave the ground for such an abominable and immoral cover up.
It is abjectly pitiful that, instead of joining to seek truth, justice and genuine reconciliation and bring lasting peace to our Land, craven apologists, media lackeys and pompous ambassadorial sycophants join the bandwagon in denouncing the political status of the Tamil nation and celebrate its military subjugation. The TNA has become the scapegoat for this deflection and political betrayal. The TNA has given up the demand for recognition of the political status of the Tamil nation. Yet, the TNA is hounded as if they are the main barrier in achieving reconciliation based on a democratic political solution. We have no truck with the TNA, a Comprador-Landlord bourgeois alliance with its headquarters in New Delhi. However, if the agenda is to deny the political status of the Tamil nation and to impose a chauvinist-hegemonic military dictatorship, then we shall stand with the oppressed Tamil nation in its struggle for liberation- as we have done consistently. Once again, if the cause of separatism and terrorism is unilaterally and singularly latched on to the LTTE, without accounting for its fundamental, generative cause in the construction of a unitary, chauvinist, hegemonic State and the policy of intensifying and systematic discrimination and violent suppression of the Tamil nation, then we shall have no truck with the regime and its apologists- and so with the LLRC. We shall not stand with the politics of division and suppression, but shall struggle untiringly to unite all revolutionary-democratic forces in the task of achieving a united, independent, democratic and prosperous Lanka.
In the end, the power of reason, truth and justice shall prevail, catch up and overcome. The masses shall not tolerate their pitiless oppression endlessly. They shall be awakened, organized and mobilized to struggle with scientific consciousness, philosophical enlightenment and political responsibility to overthrow all tyrants and together achieve their freedom. Nothing is eternal. Everything consists and exists in an eternal process of coming into being and passing away, yielding to ever evolving new heights of human emancipation. That is the dialectic of History! And that time for settling accounts at the tribunal of History is drawing near, with the passing of each day.