Balasingham, the man who straddled the divide
It was almost totally impossible to get the
Mafioso to break their so called "Omerta" or the honour
code. Not that the LTTE is anything like the Mafioso - - but getting
a LTTE leader to break the honour code is like getting a Mafia Godfather
to give the names of all his accomplices to an Italian magistrate.
But, this has
been done. The newspapers say that Anton Balasingham is 'ape miniha'
(our man.) Truth is, nobody said so directly, but if news Editors
are being suggestive, they have been pretty suggestive. Stories
say that "Anton Balasingham has advised Prabhakaran not to
go to war'' "Anton Balasingham has advised the LTTE not to
take Sri Lankan forces aggression seriously'' etc.,
has definitely broken the code of honour, and not just broken it,
but broken it while still having good times with his bosses. What
will Anton Balasingham be if he was a Mafioso, a real Mafioso? He
would be a man who breaks the code of honour, and is sipping wine
with the Godfather, while at the same time ratting to the Italian
Magistrates. In other words he would have been quite a freak - an
There was an
unkind cartoon of Anton Balasingham somewhere. He gets on a airplane
(en route to Japan or wherever ) and says "This is a safe flight.
There are no terrorists on it.'' Then he remembers. "…Except
me…of course'' he adds looking around, and being suitably
But now Balasingham
has crossed the divide -- the press considers him 'our man'' and
Tilak Marapana has been considering him 'our man 'for a long time,
judging by everything he said when LTTE fishing boats were intercepted
last year, engaging in business that was anything but fishy. I mean
So, if Balasingham
is our man, next time, the press corps might be warned - - do not
lampoon Balasingham. It is not done. It will be like getting Rajiv
Gandhi here in Colombo to sign the Indo-Lanka Accord , and then
trying to knock him out with the butt of a rifle? What did J. R.
Jayewardene say when that happened? 'A national disgrace.'
has in the meantime however said he is at the end of his tether.
This was when the Sri Lankan government offered another 'national
disgrace' to him by destroying a LTTE ship. This time of course
the Minister of Defence said that the ship contained 'warlike material.''
Must have been a couple of Australian tribal boomerangs and war
Next time they
hope to use Balasingham to use his influence with Tony Blair to
get Sri Lanka some clout within the European Union. All right, all
right -- just joking, certainly not lampooning. Anyway, suppose
somebody writes a novel about Anton Balasingham. Surely, creative
writers are not forbidden to write novels based on him. The art
of making a novel is something else, and should not be thought of
as offering a national disgrace.
say, Sarachchandra have named a possible novel based on Balasingham
if the man (bless his soul) would have lived today? 'Our man in
London?' No, that would sound too much like Graham Greene's 'Our
man in Havana', but then, if Greene can place his man in Havana,
why can't we place our man in London, what?