Sri Lanka’s (SL) unwanted exports – Asylum seekers – a critique
Nazi Germany like SL once treated the Jews as ‘unwanted’ peoples to be rid of, are now safe and well in their own state of Israel; thanks to the enlightened West. Sri Lanka (SL) so soon after trumpeting complete victory over the LTTE following the brutal massacre of the entire LTTE leadership along with over 20 000 civilians and interning over 300 000 civilians behind barb wire concentration camps, to ferret out for elements of a re-emerging LTTE in the 78 and 208 boat refugees perilously fleeing SL violence to Canada and Australia is another SL’s most cruel story. The SL massacres are the brutest; so is the journalists’ labeling the Tamil asylum seekers as SL’s ‘unwanted exports’. David Feith’s succinct ‘push factors’ explanation puts the Tamil refugee issue in proper perspective.
David’s ‘push factors’ are the products of Sinhala/Buddhist violence to marginalise the Tamils who on a population basis had a 30 per cent representation (now reduced to 5 per cent at the most) under a parliamentary system prescribed by the British when it granted Ceylon independence. For this SL used a sustained programme of (mob and armed forces) killings (SL official estimate is 80 000 but a 2004 Harvard study estimate was 350 000 then) causing starvation deaths, ethnic cleansing, depriving Tamils of their assets and means of livelihood and through massive displacements (internally creating homeless vagrants) and externally the diaspora (the unwanted exports) of over a million. However amongst these exports were tens of thousands of Sinhala/Buddhists who cheated the asylum system to enter the same host countries as the victims of the violence of the anti-Tamil (1983) pogroms. These asylum cheaters form the hardcore vocal anti-Tamil (SPUR) elements.
The enlightened and civilized West now better informed on the brutality of SL’s human rights/war crimes support the Tamil cause with initiatives to pursue the war crimes perpetrators. The successful SL genocide is attributable to the extra-ordinary story telling capacity of Sinhala/Buddhists who fatally mislead the international community into not acting to censure with stern sanctions or war crimes when the naked brutality of SL’s state terrorism became evident in the May massacre of the resistance the world witnessed. The international community is now at pains to redress the consequences of hastily lumping the Tamil resistance (with Jihardi terrorism; the scourge of the world) to deprive the Tamils of the protection they had against SL’s brutal atrocities for over thirty years.
The story format SL uses time and again to demonise the Tamils/resistance is traceable to pieces put out by Whiteman and Jenvey; both British, one time SL High Commission in UK employees who later freelanced as counter-terrorism experts for SL from a nondescript office in London. Their catalogue of LTTE’s misfeasors include funds extortion, narcotics trafficking, people smuggling (the incredible Bernard’s LTTE sale of 130000 stolen Norwegian passports to Al Qaeda for US$ million story) and a whole host of activities without giving specifics. Almost verbatim recitations of this catalogue appeared dutifully in pieces written by B Raman, Hariharan and Ajit Kumar Singh and in the Hindu paper. The lengthy recitation by Shanaka Jayasekera, an ex SL cop, one time student of Macquarie University and also a freelance counter-terrorism industry expert makes interesting reading. The trademark of these self promoted counter-terrorism experts is dubious that Bailaman though listing out Rohan’s CV omits some his claims that could not be substantiated when challenged. Rohan’s claims detail addressing several august bodies including the Federal Parliament in Canberra. Shanaka in Sydney explains Rohan’s Australian and SBS connection.
In an SBS lateline panel discussion Rohan advocated the illegal and illicit SL kidnapping in KL of a third country visitor (a Tamil) in that third country without the knowledge of governmental channels there. The damage to the franchise of the reputable institution that employs this expert imparting such flawed views has to be considerable. In that Lateline program Rohan acts as the spokesperson for SL’s war on the Tamils living in Australia and elsewhere.
Rohan also discussed recently the refugee boats issue along with Bailaman and Shyamal Barua. There was an astonishing similarity in the views/presentation amongst the three in a revived Whiteman and Jenvey model. Though every Tamil agrees that effectively SL that treats SL as the land of the Sinhalese the Tamils are SL’s unwanted ‘para demalas’; (Basil Rajapakse’s classic label for his Tamil colleague not long ago) a million of whom it successfully exported earlier. Compared to this million the host countries’ present stand over these few 78 and 260 boat refugee asylum seekers is sound. Human sufferings aside host countries become parties to SL’s plan to unfairly export the balance 1.5 million unwanted Tamils still in SL provided there are takers. The number will be larger than the 1.5 million Tamils if there is a repeat of Sinhala/Buddhists abusing the asylum system to enter the host countries as victims of SL’s genocide on the Tamils. The host countries acting jointly have only to end SL’s genocide behavior with measures outside the UNHRC especially after the UNHRC mechanism was paralysed into inaction by the numerically larger number of human rights abuser members. The US and EU stepping in and providing the leadership to deliver on what the failed UNHRC to deliver is the prayer of every Tamil worldwide.