The joyous mood of victory has caught up with everyone and this time it is Victor Ivan who thinks it’s prudent to lend his intellect to the victor.
He wrote a piece for Ravaya about two weeks back saying that its good for the Tamil people that the LTTE will get defeated. Kumar David responded in the
The crux of Victor’s argument seems to be the following: It is naked power that operates in any war. It is the same naked power that the security forces and the LTTE are unleashing against each other in competitive fashion. And when the LTTE is defeated when the war is over freedom will be restored to the Tamil people though nothing new to them might be “offered”.
Now I do not quarrel with the fact that LTTE uses naked power. Naked power, Victor defines quoting Bernard Russel is, as being the loyalty enforced through the infusion of fear disregarding all traditional beliefs and social approval under a situation when two or more fanatical creeds are contending for governance and when all traditional beliefs have decayed. I agree with this.
However my quarrel starts here. The issue is this: whether the Tamils like it or not through a bloody system of killings and counter killings ‘they’ remain the only option for the Tamil people for a just solution to the problem. This is because it is power and hard power that politicians in the South take notice of and they are the only ones who have it. Now that is what is under a threat of destruction. Victor thinks this is desirable. Of course he might ask the question is it worth risking the lives of Tamils for a ‘just’ solution? The following is a response to that.
Destruction of one naked power will lead to ‘no war’. That’s very simplistic. The naked power that is sought to be destructed was a response to the naked power exercised by those who are ‘winning’ now. Victor thinks that the naked power that was unleashed on the Tamil people will stop once the naked power that responded to this ‘original’ naked power is destroyed. The original naked power is still there and its roots are in majoritarianism. Has this changed? No. That might not be visible militarily once the responsive naked power is destroyed. But this ‘original’ naked power will continued to be exercised politically and this will lead eventually to the annihilation of the Tamil people or to their assimilation in a grand ‘Sri Lankan society’. Of course Victor makes a value judgment as to which naked power is better to live under. His choice: The original majoritarian naked power. That can’t be for me. Hence I agree with Kumar. The only option is for the LTTE to be reformed.
Here are a some excerpts from Victor and my comments on them:
Then in the absence of an armed rival group to fight the security forces, the need does not arise for physical suppression, maintenance of high security zones and for the security forces to get involved in the management of day to day matters. Along with the cessation of war assassinations, disappearances, abductions and arrests will cease.
The problem is the word 'absence' here. When will one be satisfied with finality that there is now an 'absence' of the armed rival group? It is predicted that the weeding out process will continue for a long time and my prediction is that the final result of the weeding out might be the total annihilation of the Tamil people.
Victor also seems to have completely subscribed to the now popular notion that once the armed rival group is gone the ethnic conflict will be gone. We will have a rosy
(After the defeat of the armed rival group) the democratic outlets which were hitherto closed will gradually be opened. The freedom of expression will be restored. They will get an opportunity to carefully review the issues pertaining to their struggle and assess the reasons that led to the defeat of the Tamil struggle, comprehend the true rights that they should fight for and the right course of action to be adopted etc.
And then what Mr Ivan? What do you think the right course of action will be? What are the ‘true’ rights that the Tamils should fight for? How should they ‘struggle’? Another armed movement? Or Parliamentary politics? Or Provincial council politics? Tell us which one? Or is it the option that the Tamil people become slowly assimilated with the 'Sri Lankan' society? But you are the one who is quite sure that there will be nothing new offered to the Tamil people? So where does this comment come from Victor?
Victor says the LTTE was never serious about internal self determination. Sad. And probably true. But is that an excuse for the South not working on a solution? Of course he does think that there will not be anything new offered to the Tamil people. That can’t be helped according to Victor probably. That’s your fate he seems to tell people like me.