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Tamil Diaspora's New Umbrella - The Global Tamil Forum (GTF)

Tamil Diaspora's New Umbrella - The Global Tamil Forum (GTF)

Fails to Hide the Tigers' Stripes

(By: Mahinda Gunasekera)

The Tamil Diaspora which funded the brutal terrorist movement called the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) also known as the Tamil Tigers, has regularly changed its disguise through a simple metamorphosis involving a name change and re-arranging the deck with new faces to hide their links to the designated terror group. After the military action taken by the Sri Lankan forces ended in May 2009 with the killing of the Tiger Supremo, Velupillai Prabhakaran and his lieutenants on the banks of the Nanthikadal Lagoon on the northeast coast, the carefully laid out plans of foisting a Tamil state on Sri Lankan soil with western support simply vanished like a bad dream that partially disturbed the nation which woke up to face the challenge head on. The Tamil Diaspora's plans to carve out a separate state covering one-third of the land area spread over two-thirds of the coast extending from the northwest to the southeast of the island for less than half the total Tamils counting less than 4 percent resident in the region, by force of arms, went up in smoke along with the massive stockpile of weapons they had procured for the purpose and smuggled into the jungle hideout of the Tiger terror machine in the Vanni.

Looking at the congregation of Tamil Diaspora organizations which went to form the Global Tamil Forum it is quite evident to anyone that it is merely a re-branding of the pro-Tamil Tiger World Tamil Movement (WTM), with its goal of establishing a separate Tamil state within the sovereign territory of the Sri Lankan nation remaining the same. The involvement of the groups that were the main propagandists for the Tamil Tigers such as the Canadian Tamil Congress which took over the leadership in Canada following the arrest of the head of the WTM and the designation of the LTTE as an international terrorist group in September 2001 by the UN, the Norwegian Council of Eelam Tamils, and the House of Eelam Tamils with the map of the mythical state of "Eelam" as its logo along with similar groups in 14 countries including Europe, USA, Australia, and New Zealand, leaves nothing to the imagination of the observers to determine the nature of the newly created beast in London, UK, on February 24, 2010.

In addition, bringing on Father S.J. Emmanuel, the former Vicar General of the Catholic Diocese of Jaffna to lead the GTF leaves little room to doubt the ulterior aims and motives of this body of hate filled Diaspora Tamils that bankrolled the Tamil Tiger killing machine with access to billions of extorted and ill gotten dollars in their secret coffers. Father Emmanuel is well known for his controversial statement comparing the remorseless megalomaniacal leader of the brutal Tamil Tiger Terrorists, Velupillai Prabhakaran to Jesus Christ who is regarded as the Great Redeemer, in an interview given to the British national newspaper, the Independent. He has in his writings and talks defended the terrorist activities of the LTTE and fanned the flames of war and violence causing untold misery to thousands of innocent lives of people from all communities in Sri Lanka. Father Emmanuel who has been a key figure in the LTTE international network has been using his religious cloak to stalk like a holy Tiger in the corridors of power in Europe and South Africa to win sympathy and support for the terrorist cause.

It is not surprising that the British who are the architects of division in their former colonies including Sri Lanka (Ceylon), which have led to conflicts with minorities seeking the special privileges and power bestowed to them by the colonial regime even after independence from Britain, hosting the GTF Conference and giving their blessings to these misguided Tamil separatists pursuing the break up of the sovereign state of Sri Lanka. Making a big splash at this conference held in the Gladstone Room of the British Parliament were David Milliband, British Foreign Secretary who made the opening speech, whilst the Conservative 'shadow' foreign secretary William Hague and the Liberal Democrat counterpart Ed Davey also addressed the delegates. Other speakers included nine members of the All Party Parliamentary Group for Tamils (APPG-T), two British members of the European Parliament and about six other senior parliamentarians including Simon Hughes and Gareth Thomas, and an ANC member of the South African Parliament. Among the attendees were Rev. Jesse Jackson who was introduced as a friend of President Obama and a representative of the Royal Norwegian Government. There were greetings from the British Conservative Party leader David Cameron and Robert Blake the current US Secretary of State for South and Central Asia and a meeting of GTF representatives with Prime Minister Gordon Brown. Here we have the main actors who attempted to pressure Sri Lanka to halt the military action against the LTTE terrorists who refused to surrender to the Sri Lankan authorities, and seek to provide safe passage and asylum for the Tamil Tiger leaders in a foreign country to continue their attacks to destabilize the island nation.

The Diaspora Tamils have been conducting meaningless referenda in their host countries in the west to seek a mandate to pursue the same objectives of a separate state called "Eelam" within the sovereign territory of Sri Lanka as envisioned in the 'Vadukkodai Resolution' of 1976, based on the false premise of the existence of a traditional homeland of the Tamils in the north and east of the island from the dawn of history. Firstly, the Diaspora Tamils who hold foreign citizenship and domiciled outside Sri Lanka cannot have a say in the internal affairs of Sri Lanka which can be decided only by citizens of the land. Furthermore, historical records show that the vast majority of the Tamils were brought to Sri Lanka by the Dutch and British colonialists for work on tobacco, cocoa, coffee and tea plantations which they started after destroying the ecological wealth of the country and taking over the lands of the indigenous Sinhalese whom they dispossessed through infamous Acts such as the Waste Lands Ordinance, etc. Tamils first arrived as invaders but were driven back to South India from the pockets they captured after short periods of control of such terrain. Except for a few Tamils who arrived as settlers around the 12th century, the bulk of the Tamils came as indentured labour under the Dutch and British colonial regimes which date back to about 350 years, which is a far stretch to say it extends to the dawn of history which covers 2600 years of the Sinhalese domination of the island as given in the 'Mahavamsa', which is a chronicle of recorded history.

Now that the Tiger terrorists have been totally defeated and their overseas financiers in the Diaspora sidelined to their fantasy mythical land of "Eelam", the Tamils who are equal citizens of Sri Lanka could look forward to participating in the development of their country and building a peaceful and prosperous nation.

Nearly 250,000 of the approximately 294,000 civilians who were forcibly removed from their villages in the Vanni to form a human shield for the retreating Tiger terrorists have since been re-settled in the de-mined and re-built villages within a space of nine months, whilst infrastructure, roads and electric power is being extended to the region at a rapid pace. The 11,000 odd Tiger cadres that surrendered are being provided with vocational training and being re-habilitated into society. Tamil children who risked being abducted to end up as cannon fodder or be brainwashed to become suicide bombers could now look forward to receiving a proper education that will open new vistas of opportunity for improving their lot. Those civilians who lived under the jackboot of the Tiger terrorists can get back to farming, fishing or other normal activities instead of digging bunkers, trenches, and putting together landmines and other explosive devices to kill and maim their fellow citizens belonging to different communities. The Tamil civilians who were prevented from participating in the democratic process and choosing their representatives have to a large extent got back their freedom and their democratic rights, and are now in a position to contribute to their betterment and that of their country which they share with members of the multi-ethnic and multi-religious society of Sri Lanka.

The free movement of people of varying backgrounds, travelling north, south and in all directions within the island after the collapse of the Tamil Tiger built iron curtain of deadly Mines, Suicide Bombers, Maaveera killers, RPGs, AK47s, Mortars, Artillery Guns, Suicide Boats, Chemical Weapons, Night Bombers, etc., is contributing to building friendly ties and bonds in every field that is leading towards healing of the conflicting issues and reconciliation, whilst ushering in an era of peace and plenty for all. The Global Tamil Forum which may wield a little political clout in an insignificant number of electorates in western countries has little or no influence within Sri Lanka, and will soon become redundant and fade away like the mythical dream state of "Eelam".

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