Deputy Minister of Labour Mervyn Silva has offered a foreign job to Prabhakaran. He is reported to have told the Tamil National Alliance in Parliament on Monday if the LTTE leaders gave up violence, he would find them jobs abroad.
The present day parliamentarians don`t seem to do their homework before making speeches. Else, Mr. Silva wouldn`t have made that offer. Isn`t he aware that Prabhakaran is already doing a foreign job? It was in the early 1980s that he was first employed by India with many other Tamil youth. He worked for India until he took on the IPKF. But his employment was officially terminated only after the Rajiv Gandhi assassination.
Since then he has turned to other foreign masters. He basically facilitates their involvement in Sri Lanka and helps them remote-control its governments. It is thanks to him that a group of aid donors have deified themselves; the foursome have placed themselves on the same pedestal as the four warrant gods who are believed to protect Sri Lanka. Besides them, there are several other foreign powers that have stood to gain from Prabhakaran`s venture.
The phenomenon of terrorism has given rise to a different kind of dependency in the (post) modern world. It has become a tool with which to control sovereign states with or without aid as manifest in the post 1983 Indo-Lanka relations. Even though the links between India and the LTTE have been severed, Sri Lanka is still dependent on the former to keep the latter at bay. Look at the way President Rajapakse is pleading with India to help prevent the LTTE arms smuggling. Prabhakaran`s contract with India may be over but he is still serving its purpose albeit unwittingly. But for him, Sri Lanka wouldn`t have been beholden to its big neighbour to the extent it is at present. Today, India and Sri Lanka are relating to each other more like a feudal lord and a vassal than two sovereign states. India appears to be reaping the dividends of the creation of Sri Lanka`s terrorism even after two decades.
Hence, we see foreign powers that have made a grand show of their war on terror doing to the LTTE what mosquito coil manufacturers are doing to mosquitoes. In dealing with the menace they have adopted measures that are effective enough to contain it but not strong enough to eliminate it. For, its survival at a manageable level is to their advantage.
Some time ago, an LTTE supporter said in an e-mail message to us that despite their bans, the US, the UK, India, the EU and Canada did not really believe that the LTTE was a terrorist organisation. `Otherwise,` he said, `will they ask Sri Lanka to negotiate with it?` We had no quarrels with him. He hit the nail on the head! Either those countries don`t really believe in the fact that the LTTE is a terrorist group, as he says, or they are aiding and abetting terrorism by forcing Sri Lanka to negotiate with it. Coercing a sovereign state to accept a proscribed terrorist group as a representative of the people, whom it keeps under the gun, is tantamount to appointing a convicted murder as the head of a human rights organisation. Double standards are a luxury only the developed countries could afford. They won`t give a damn about what others think of them so long as their interests are served. Remember, Bokassa, Idi Amin, Papa Doc and others. They wouldn`t have risen to power but for their service to their foreign masters, who nurtured them in return. The same goes for bin Laden and Saddam Hussein.
If how the LTTE is serving the interests of other countries and foreign organisations is any indication, then Deputy Minister Silva will see that Prabhakaran is working for foreigners through his venture. Mr. Silva had better offer the foreign job he may have reserved for the LTTE leader to someone else who really has the need for it, preferably to an LTTE deserter whose life is in danger.
Similarly, Mr. Silva should be wary of being used by the various fronts for those whom he is offering foreign jobs to. He should think before plunging head first into protests that they organise with a hidden agenda. With a surfeit of foreign funds, they have managed to have many politicians in their pocket.