Tamils - a Trans State Nation..

"To us all towns are one, all men our kin.
Life's good comes not from others' gift, nor ill
Man's pains and pains' relief are from within.
Thus have we seen in visions of the wise !."
Tamil Poem in Purananuru, circa 500 B.C 

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Sri Lanka's Genocidal War '08 - '09
...after Abrogation of Ceasefire

Murder Tamils... and  Incarcerate those Tamils who escape in Concentration Camps

"Where national memories are concerned, griefs are of more value than triumphs, for they impose duties, and require a common effort. A nation is therefore a large-scale solidarity, constituted by the feeling of the sacrifices that one has made in the past and of those that one is prepared to make in the future. " What is a nation? - Ernest Renan, 1882

[see also Sinhala Sri Lanka's War Crimes: Genocide & State Terrorism and Sri Lanka's Genocidal War - at Flickr]

It is with some hesitation that we publish these photographs of Sri Lanka's Genocidal onslaught on the people of Tamil Eelam - photographs which may offend the sensibility of many. But the brutal nature of Sinhala Sri Lanka's continuing genocidal onslaught on the people of Tamil Eelam must be exposed. 

Jean Paul Sartre was right when he declared in 1967 that "against partisans backed by the entire population, (occupying) colonial armies have only one way of escaping from the harassment which demoralizes them.... This is to eliminate the civilian population. As it is the unity of a whole people that is containing the conventional army, the only  anti-guerrilla strategy which will be effective is the destruction of that people, in other words, the civilians, women and children..."  

Each picture published here speaks a thousand words and exposes not only the horrific war crimes committed by President Rajapaksa and the Sinhala forces under his command but taken together they also  reflect the political reality that it is the unity of the entire population of Tamil Eelam in their struggle for freedom from alien Sinhala rule, that has led the Sinhala regime to believe that the ' only anti-guerrilla strategy which will be effective is the destruction of that people, in other words, the civilians, women and children...' President Rajapaksa and his ruling coterie may believe that they are being effective but they have fanned the flames of an enduring and deep rooted anger and resentment amongst more than 70 million Tamils living in many lands.

The Sinhala rulers may believe that they are clearing the 'swamp' but the political reality that will confront them sooner rather than later is that they have only created additional ones. The self immolation of Muthukumar in Tamil Nadu and Murukuthasan before the UN headquarters in Geneva are proof enough of that. To imagine that peace will come to the island of Sri Lanka without justice is to live in cloud cuckooland. And justice demands a recognition of the truth of that which Gandhian Tamil Eelam leader S.J.V.Chelvanaygam said succintly more than 30 years ago -

"Throughout the ages the Sinhalese and Tamils in the country lived as distinct sovereign people till they were brought under foreign domination. It should be remembered that the Tamils were in the vanguard of the struggle for independence in the full confidence that they also will regain their freedom. We have for the last 25 years made every effort to secure our political rights on the basis of equality with the Sinhalese in a united Ceylon."

"It is a regrettable fact that successive Sinhalese governments have used the power that flows from independence to deny us our fundamental rights and reduce us to the position of a subject people. These governments have been able to do so only by using against the Tamils the sovereignty common to the Sinhalese and the Tamils."

"I wish to announce to my people and to the country that I consider the verdict at this election as a mandate that the Tamil Eelam nation should exercise the sovereignty already vested in the Tamil people and become free."

Yes, the Tamil people know that sovereignty may not be virginity. But  two sovereign peoples will associate with one another only in equality and in freedom - and no one people may impose their rule on another.   We are reminded yet again of something that the Leader of Tamil Eelam, Velupillai Pirabakaran  said many years ago -

 'Sinhala thesam should understand that a solution to the Tamil national question cannot be found by resort to war and by the military suppression of the Tamil people.' - BBC interview, September 1994

That, then is the bottom line.

Murder Tamils ...  and  incarcerate those Tamils who remain alive in Concentration Camps

 �These are not welfare camps, they are prisoner-of-war cum concentration camps.� Robert Evans, a Labour MEP who visited Sri Lanka as chairman of the European Parliament Delegation on Relations with South Asia

Sri Lanka plans to hold displaced Tamils in 'concentration camps' Dean Nelson, South Asia Editor, Daily Telegraph, 13 February 2009

The Sri Lankan government has been denounced over plans to forcibly detain thousands of Tamil civilians fleeing the country's civil war in "concentration camps".

Officials have confirmed they will establish several "welfare villages" to house the estimated 200,000 Tamils displaced from their homes by the Sri Lankan army's "final offensive" against the LTTE's stronghold on the north of the Island. Senior officials have however confirmed that those housed in the villages will have no choice on whether to stay in the camps.

The villages, which will be based in Vavuniya and Mannar districts and will include banks and parks, will be compulsory holding centres for all civilians fleeing the fighting. They will be screened for terrorist connections and then held under armed guard, with only those with relatives inside the camp allowed to come and go. Single youngsters will be confined to the camps.

It remains unclear how long displaced Tamils will be forced to remain in the camps. Officials had originally planned to detain civilians there for three years but, following an outcry from humanitarian groups, said they hoped to resettle 80 per cent within a year.

Aid groups, senior opposition leaders and Britain's Department for International Development have all denounced the plan, which was on Friday compared to Hitler's demonisation of the Jews in the 1930s.

Former Foreign minister Mangala Samaraweera, a former close aide to President Mahinda Rajapaksa, said it was part of a police to paint all Tamils, even moderate opponents of the Tamil Tigers, as potential terrorists and to silence all Tamil voices.

"It is amazing and terrible. A few months ago the government started registering all Tamils in Colombo on the grounds that they could be a security threat, but this could be exploited for other purposes like the Nazis in the 1930s. They're basically going to label the whole civilian Tamil population as potential terrorists, and as a result we are becoming a recruitment machine for the LTTE. Instead of winning hearts and minds of the Tamil people, we're pushing even the moderates into the arms of the LTTE by taking these horrendous steps," he told The Daily Telegraph.

A spokesman for Britain's Department for International Development said:"We are aware of the Government of Sri Lanka's plans for civilians displaced by the conflict in the Vanni. We do not believe current plans represent a sufficient solution by international humanitarian standards. Prolonging the displacement of this very vulnerable group of people is not in anyone's interests.

"There is no UK Government money going into the camps. The UK is supporting international agencies on the ground like the Red Cross, who are in constant touch with the Government of Sri Lanka to find an acceptable solution for those affected. It is important to note that the Government of Sri Lanka has consistently followed a speedy resettlement policy and the experience in the East has been positive in this regard

Barbed wire villages raise fears of refugee concentration camps
Jeremy Page, South Asia Correspondent,  Stringer/Reuters, Times on Line, 13 February 2009

Tamil refugees wait in the town of Vishvamadu to be sent to government camps

Sri Lanka was accused yesterday of planning concentration camps to hold 200,000 ethnic Tamil refugees from its northeastern conflict zone for up to three years � and seeking funding for the project from Britain.

The Sri Lankan Government says that it will open five �welfare villages� to house Tamils fleeing the 67 sq mile patch of jungle where the army has pinned down the Tamil Tiger rebels.

The ministry in charge says that the camps, in Vavuniya and Mannar districts, will have schools, banks, parks and vocational centres to help to rehabilitate up to 200,000 displaced Tamils after a 25-year civil war.

It also says that it will be compulsory for people fleeing the area to live in the camps until the army � which will guard them � has screened them, hunted down the Tigers and demined the area. The camps will be ringed with barbed wire fencing and, while those with relatives inside will be allowed to come and go after initial screening, young and/or single people will not be allowed to leave, it says.

It originally proposed holding them for up to three years, but after protests from the UN refugee agency now says that it hopes to resettle 80 per cent by the end of the year. �Of course, it will not be voluntary � we need to check everyone,� Rajiva Wijesinha, the Secretary of the Ministry of Disaster Management and Human Rights, told The Times. �This is a situation where we�re dealing with terrorists who infiltrate civilian populations. Security has to be paramount.� He said that it was the only way to prevent Tiger suicide attacks like the one that killed 20 soldiers and eight civilians on Tuesday.

Indian and Sri Lankan Tamil MPs expressed outrage and urged the international community not to fund the camps without direct oversight and independent media access. �These are nothing but concentration camps,� said Raman Senthil, an Indian Tamil MP. �Why should they be in camps? If they are citizens they should be rehabilitated straight away.�

Mano Ganeshan, a Sri Lankan Tamil MP, said: �I don�t want to say concentration camp yet, but they�re already detention camps and military grilling stations. They should be run and monitored by the international community.� Suren Surendiran, of the British Tamils Forum, said that the camps were �like the detention centres where the Jews were held in World War Two�.

Robert Evans, a Labour MEP who has visited Sri Lanka as chairman of the European Parliament Delegation on Relations with South Asia, said: �These are not welfare camps, they are prisoner-of-war cum concentration camps.� Human Rights Watch called the camps �detention centres� and said that they violated UN guidelines on internally displaced people, which say they can only be detained or interned under exceptional circumstances. �The Sri Lankan Government has not demonstrated that such circumstances exist,� said Charu Hogg, a Human Rights Watch spokeswoman.

Amnesty International said that the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights obliged Sri Lanka to refrain from arbitrarily depriving any person�s right to liberty. �The Government wants international assistance but not international standards,� said Yolanda Foster, Amnesty�s Sri Lanka expert.

President Rajapaksa said last week that the army was within days of defeating the Tigers, and rejected international calls for a ceasefire. The Government says that 32,000 civilians have fled the conflict zone in the past week and are being processed at 13 temporary camps. Amnesty describes those as �de facto detention centres� and accuses the army of taking hostages by allowing people to leave only if a relative stays behind. The Government says that Amnesty, Human Rights Watch and international aid agencies are prejudiced towards the Tigers.

For that reason, Professor Wijesinha said, the Government would limit aid groups� access to camps and allow journalists to visit only on government tours. He said that President Rajapaksa�s office drafted the original proposal two weeks ago and circulated it to foreign embassies and aid agencies to raise funding. �There�s talk that the British will provide a couple of million pounds,� he said.

Britain�s Department for International Development denied that, saying: �Prolonging the displacement of this vulnerable group of people is not in anyone�s interests. There is no UK government money going into the camps.�

The United Nations refugee agency, UNHCR, said that the Government revised its proposal after concerns were raised over the three-year detention period. A new version was committed to resettling people as soon as possible, said Sulakshani Perera, a UNHCR spokeswoman. She said Basil Rajapaksa, the President�s brother, had said it would not be compulsory for anyone to enter the camps.



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