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Asian Tribune is published by E-LANKA MEDIA(PVT)Ltd. Vol. 20 No. 79

Divide and Conquer

[b]Divide and Conquer[/b]

By Tisaranee Gunasekara

[i][b]“For that they are unnatural, strange and monstrous,
Exceed all measure of belief…” [/b][/i]

[b]Shelley [/b]([i]The Cenci[/i])

Where would the Tigers be if the Black July did not happen? Probably still around, but not much more than that. Vellupillai Pirapaharan would certainly not be Surya Thevan and the LTTE would be lots less successful, lots less powerful and barely known outside the shores of Sri Lanka. Therefore it is only natural that in this uncertain period in their fortunes the Tigers would try to replicate the one condition which brought them such rich dividends – a clash between the Sinhalese and the Tamils, or at the least a state of permanent unrest with the Sri Lankan Armed Forces battling irate Tamil people.

In other words, the Tigers’ goal would be a new conjuncture which will enable them to don the mantle of ‘the protectors of the Tamil people’ from the marauding Sinhala Army, the oppressive Sinhala state and chauvinist Sinhala people. Less than a month ago the Armed Forces warned of a LTTE plan to create civil disturbances in the East, either by provoking the Tamils or the Sinhalese.

The killing of a leading Sinhala-Buddhist activist in Trinco is probably part of the same plan. The dead man was one of those responsible for setting up the controversial Buddha statue outside the market; he probably has connections (formal or informal) to one or more Buddhist supremacist organisations in the South (in and around Colombo too the sudden mushrooming of Buddha statues at junctions is discernible; there is an organised network which cares for them – places flowers and so on – though they are more or less ignored by the general – and generally Buddhist – public).

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