LTTE's international 'friends'
this tug o' war ever end? No, we are not talking about the cohabitation
exercises between the President and the Prime Minister's government,
but the more dangerous tug o' war between the LTTE and the government.
This time the LTTE has come right out and attacked the international
community that's behind the government's peace moves. Anton Balasingham
in his letter in response to the government's proposal for an Interim
Administration for the North and East states that 'formidable international
forces are adopting a hard-line attitude which is impacting negatively
on the peace process.'
In one sense
it is poetic theatre that the LTTE now has to call the international
community hard-line, when it was the LTTE which first internationalised
the conflict via the Diaspora and painted itself as the organisation
that stands up for Sri Lanka's horribly oppressed minority.
the LTTE's chickens have come home to roost. If the international
community is adopting a hard-line towards it as the LTTE states,
then the LTTE has no one but itself to blame, first for internationalising
the conflict, and second for alienating the international community
through its actions.
But, as for
us, we do not find anything so rock-like in the hardness of the
so called hard-line approach that is said to be adopted by the international
community towards the LTTE. These so-called international forces,
the US, Norway and Japan paramount among them, have been all but
falling at the LTTE's feet in their entreaties to be present at
the proceedings when the Sri Lankan donor community meets in Japan
shortly. All this supplication is at a time when the US for instance,
as the world's only super-power is in a super bad mood in a now
celebrated global war on terror. So, to think that the LTTE is worrying
in this atmosphere that the international community is mistreating
it by 'sticking a terrorist label' onto it is hilarious. The LTTE
should be ecstatic that along with Al Qaeda it is not being pummelled
wherever possible, but then, it is the LTTE's particular style to
show up any advantage as a disadvantage.
Time and again
the LTTE has got away with this sleight of hand in their approach
of somehow tinkering with the facts. The fact is that the LTTE has
got a massive reprieve from the international community, which could
have gone after it but chose instead to appease and play ball with
it, even though sticking a quite useless terrorist label onto it.
Quite useless because the label has zero value in effect, when the
international community is entreating the LTTE to sit with a democratically
elected government at a donor conference for instance.
It is for the
LTTE's leadership to judge -- but this time, the organisation may
be overreaching in its relationship with the big powers. The Sri
Lankan government may be hyper tolerant but the international community
might snap, and consume the LTTE, if the LTTE insists on biting
the hand that feeds it. The donor money for the reconstruction of
the North East does not exactly fall like manna from heaven - and
the LTTE must be knowing that even if its suits it at present to
act as if it doesn't.
But the problem
with this view of the LTTE's relationship with the international
community is that time and time again the LTTE has thumbed its nose
at powerful foreign countries, and of course at this country - and
got away with it.
Sri Lanka - but it is time the international community considers
the warnings issued to the LTTE in perspective. Lest the LTTE will
look like it is biting the hand that feeds it - but that hand may
look like it belongs to someone that has a lot more bark than bite…