A petition to world leaders on the assassination of Foreign Minister Lakshman Kadirgamar has tossed up some interesting viewpoints on the Sri Lankan conflict, with the general contention being that the international community should stop adopting double standards in dealing with terrorism.
The majority of those signing the petition have also held the Norwegians biased and supportive of the LTTE; have urged the international community to help Sri Lanka wipe out terrorism; and have asked them to stop funding the Tigers and the Tamils Rehabilitation Organisation. There are also several calls for local leaders to unite on the ethnic question and for India to intervene in Sri Lanka.
The petition, which can be found at http://www.petitiononline.com/lakshman/petition.html, was curiously created and written by Graeme Wilson ? the controversial British writer of President Chandrika Kumaratunga`s biography `CBK`. It is addressed to UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan, US President George W Bush and UK Prime Minister Tony Blair and provides insight into a range of public views on the state of the peace process.
`Foreign leaders and government were quick to issue condemnations against those who murdered Kadirgamar,` the appeal states. `But they continue to be somewhat slower in ensuring that fund raising in their countries, which supports the LTTE`s terrorist activities, has been brought to a halt.
`We look forward to leadership in ensuring that the funding and support base for the LTTE outside of Sri Lanka is now curtailed with the same sense of purpose shown in pursuing those who threaten the safety of western capitals.`
The majority of those who have endorsed the petition are Sinhala, followed by Muslim and Tamil. There are also several foreigners. It wasn`t possible to independently verify their identities or comments.
Of those Tamils who have signed the appeal, many have expressed sorrow and desperation. One person, who identifies himself only as a Tamil in Jaffna, says: `I cannot place my name here as I fear what they would do.
But please know that 99.9% of us Tamils condemn these cockroaches of the LTTE.` Another, J.P.R. Satynam, asserts: `I agree with the cockroaches comment. Mr Bush, Please help Sri Lanka and show solidarity with us.`
From the Moratuwa University, P Selvam maintains: `No one should believe LTTE as the sole representative of Sri Lankan Tamils as long as they are armed.`
However, there were also voices supporting the killing of Kadirgamar. For instance, Subramaniam writes: `Well done LTTE. Show your more colours.` Kanahavel feels, `He never spoke when Tamils were killed. So what is the use of him as a Tamil? He has to be killed`.
Among the apparent foreigners who have signed the petition, Jason Small affirms: `I personally know many Tamils in the UK (friends) who suffer because of the LTTE. Extortion is rampant. Let`s face it, they are terrorists and should get the same treatment we give to any terrorist group`. John Bothers asserts: `I have visited Sri Lanka. The LTTE do not stand for that country or the Tamils. The western world must act.`
`As a Norwegian national, I am ashamed that my country supports the LTTE, and at the same time allows Tamil Tigers under the guise of asylum seekers, who enter a free and gullible society and brainwash them with their tales of prosecution, while in reality they only want the hard earned Norwegian tax payers` money to fund their brutal and unjust war,` writes C. Erik.
The Sinhalese and Muslims have also expressed a variety of views. Bernard Jayathilake says, `It`s wrong for the Tamil Terrorists to kill their own people who are innocent.` Hakim Usoof explains: `Terrorism is terrorism, not liberation; we have suffered for 22 years. You have felt the pain only for 4, take action now.`
Haresh Boteju says, `Please help SL to eliminate LTTE but not Tamils.` C Kannangara writes: `Norwegian Labor Party should rethink their nomination of an LTTE cadre as their candidate if they denounce terrorism. This would seriously eradicate Norwegian credibility as a major peace-broker in the world. YOU CAN`T BE HALF PREGNANT! Either you denounce OR endorse terrorism. Please choose between terrorism (Yogarajah Balasingham) or Peace.`
There were also impersonators on the list. For instance, `Prabhakaran` scoffs: `I know I did a wrong thing, But I also know that the International community and Sri Lankan government won`t say anything.` A second `Velupillai Pirabakaran` has signed the petition but has not said anything.
Some paraded as George W Bush. One Bush said: `I`ll punish them as I did for Bin Larden (Laden)` while the other maintained that, `I will bomb them, I will take them to justice.` The `JVP` confesses, `I killed him because he is Tamil. No Tamils allowed in the Parliament`. `Chandrika Kumaratunga` says, `Great work done by someone. But I have to say this is LTTE`.
Then, there were the pragmatists like H.U.Kanna, who advises: `Don`t waste time writing petition to leaders who don`t care about our small island. We don`t have oil or any resource they need, so our voice is just a nuisance to them as mosquitoes are to us.`