தமிழ்த் தேசியம்

"To us all towns are one, all men our kin.
Life's good comes not from others' gift, nor ill
Man's pains and pains' relief are from within.
Thus have we seen in visions of the wise !."

- Tamil Poem in Purananuru, circa 500 B.C 

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Journey Down Memory Lane To Reach 'tamiz Izam'
R.Shanmugalingam

Chapter 46

Sunday last was a little different from other Sundays. The usual call from our children in California and listening to our two year old granddaughter’s ‘melodies,' trying to tell us what were happening in the background. One of her toys, sing animal cries and she recognizes the animal. She said’ "adu mU" meaning that is the mooing of a cow, and "teddy nigh nigh" that was Teddy the dog.

A friend called about the Editorial in the Washington Post of February 3, captioned Sri Lanka’s terrorists, and The Times Thursday, February 1, 1996, Captioned "Victory in Jaffna proves hollow as war is widened." By Christopher Thomas.

Two opposing views on the turn of events and the shadow that is cast by the bombing of the Central Bank building, spelling out, "The Tamil Tigers have demonstrated that they cannot be defeated militarily or humbled politically." Here is a commentary by a person from UK, who in all, have followed events in Sri Lanka since 1796. The British know more about the Tamils than the Sinhalas know about the Tamils and in the same scale the British know more about the Sinhalas than the Tamils know about the Sinhalas.

Whereas, the Washington Post editorial is an automatic reaction to an event in the eyes of the Editor/s, as a single isolated act of violence. In as much as it is viewed so, the bombing is an act of "terrorism." There is nothing new or helpful in resolving the crisis. This is a replay of the Sri Lankan government script provided to the International media.

The Tamils, are not represented by the media pleasing, publicity seeking pathetic US Tamils, particularly the Boston Tamil. We, are only coasting on the momentum we gained while back home. Some of us gained so much momentum, that it will take a long time to come to a stop or give up. Those who did not gain momentum will be the silent mass.

Others who are fueled by Sinhala incentives will rattle for some time or periodically pull out their periscopes and see only in the direction towards the source of incentives. "Enough moderate Tamils showed favor for this package to allow outsiders to believe that it was a reasonable offer."

This is the Washington Post reason for "no hesitation in condemning their criminal acts." Full blooded ‘tamizA’ how can you rest until you expose this "enough moderate Tamils" as only a handful of "CUT THROATS " and get Washington Post and others to base their editorials on the cumulative reasons that had pushed the freedom fighters and the Tamil community as a whole-with the exception of cut throats- stand for the right to self determination.

Going back to Sunday, I was entertained by American Movie Classics in the cable TV to a double feature on the toe-tapping musicals in The Benny Goodman Story and The Glenn Miller story. In the case of Benny Goodman, his clarinet gushes out a fountain of sweet nectar to the ears. Here was a man who had this gut-feeling, that he had something that he could not explain it in words. He could only speak through his clarinet. He wanted an audience to kindle or open the geyser of music. In lean times conditions changed but not his conviction. That quality of working until his conviction converted to concrete concert, was the key to his success. With all the synthetic capabilities to produce sound, Benny Goodman remains the greatest Clarinet player in the western music world.

Glenn Miller, was so sure of himself, even after two years, he claimed his university friend as his girl. He cut through the lines of the March-past to take over the conducting of the band to give it life. He was reprimanded by his immediate superior, but complimented by the General. He was given a free hand to form his own Band. From "serenading in the moonlight to string of pearls and putting us in the mood" are old tunes that have gotten better against the back drop of Electronic sounds. Incidentally according to "This day in History" in the Boston Globe of 2-5-96, "In 1940, Glenn Miller and his orchestra recorded "Tuxedo Junction" for RCA Victor’s Bluebird Label.

Why I wanted to write about these two great musicians was to remind us about the hidden potential, the untapped aquifer of human service is within us. Given the desire, that converts into a conviction, there is little or nothing that cannot be achieved, within human reach. ‘tamiz Izam’ is not like the mythological Rama wanting the moon. It is not the fleeting fancy of politically ambitious astute arrogant "animals."

It is a necessity, arrived at after a long time of sufferings, Satyagrahas, acquiescence, arrests, tortures, (maims), embarrassments, over a million Tamils disenfranchised, loss since 1977, "74,000 innocent Tamil civilians have been killed, 114,000 wounded, 44,000 missing and 140,000 rendered orphans in these barbaric military brutalities and over a million rendered refugees. {Source: Unitted Church World Mission, March 1993.} Obviously the numbers are even greater, since the "White dove fur coat" donning damsel is directing the Sinhala decimation of ‘tamizar.’

‘tamizA’ read what some of the Sinhala leaders of the past and present have said and are saying. I give below a few for you to cast away your self-claimed superior posture, and know-all mentalities, and understand the Sinhalas and their attitude towards ‘tamizar.’ You are warned, if you already do not know, of the outstretched hand of friendship to non Tiger Tamils, from Chandali Chandrika, she is the vulture in the ‘Dove fur coat." I would like to quote what mother used to quote, "kaRRatu ky manh aLavu, kallAtatu ulakaLavu." "Fistful of sand is what is learnt, unlearnt, the rest of the sand."

"The time has come for the whole Sinhalese race which has existed for 2500 years jealously safeguarding their language and religion to fight without giving quarter to save their birthright...... I will lead the disobedience campaign." ("Our JR" in opposing the Banda Chelva pact in 1957.)

"If you want to fight, let there be a fight, if it is peace, let there be peace. That is what they will say. It is not what I am saying. The people of Sri Lanka say that...." Again "Our JR) made in a speech frightening the Tamil political leadership on August 18, 1977 as reported in The Tribune of 27th August, 1977.

"The history of Sri Lanka is the history of the Sinhalese race..... The Sinhalese people were entrusted 2500 years ago, with a great and noble charge, the preservation..... of Buddhism. The birth of the Sinhalese race would.... seem to have been not a mere chance, not an accidental occurrence, but a predestined event of high import and purpose.

The nation seemed designed, as it were, from its rise, primary to carry aloft for fifty centuries the torch that was lit by the great World-Mentor [the Buddha] twenty-five centuries ago..." {The Revolt in the Temple: By D.C. Wijayawardhana, 1953.}

I still maintain that any concession to ‘tamizar’ by any Sinhala leader is a MALIGNANT ILLUSION and we are seeing it now. ‘piLLy piRakkA venhdumAnAl Inhavum vEnhdum mukkavum vEnhdum.’ "The child to be born, push and strain are prerequisites." Of course the softies would prefer painless birthing by administering drugs or through C sections. But under medical emergencies these may be inevitable.

We ‘tamizar’ are having this tremendous labor pain, how do I know? I compared notes with a woman who had babies and who suffered Renal colic pain. She claims that the latter is many times more painful than labor pain, and I had suffered the pain caused by the kidney stone dislodged. The child to be born is ‘tamiz Izam.’

To paraphrase Wijayawardhana, "The birth of ‘tamiz Izam’ is not an accidental conception, it is a planned parenthood decision. This was not a torch lit by MENTALS twenty-five hundred years ago. It is a light burning for the last ten thousand years and more. Nation of ‘tamiz Izam’ is not designed to carry aloft any lofty ideal, but for the survival of a community of people who without any conveniently concocted cons, need to cessate from the loaded longings of a lost humans from giving credence to a Buddhist Monks created moot idea.

Mahakavi Bharathy, in one of his songs played the Devil’s Advocate. The British were supposed to ask the Indians at the thick of independence movement in India. I give below a couple of verses.

One of the problems we face here in the USA is, we do not have an organization that has the teeth to move forward an agenda that will remove some of the obstacles to the ‘tamiz’ PR machinery. Independent, individual action by a very few is not going to move anything or anybody. Recently, a group sought my opinion as to how it will look, if we all signed a petition and more or less forced the freedom fighters to symbolically lay down arms. I asked them why?

The whole world is preaching that to the freedom fighters. It is not for the freedom fighters to take the first step. You all remember, as a token of friendship to the newly elected President Chandrika, when she extended the hand of friendship, after the first round of talks, the freedom fighters, unilaterally, and not symbolically, but in reality declared a cease-fire.

So instead of wasting time and resources with a sensible and sincere group desiring peace, it is worth a try with the Sinhalas and prevail on them to invite the freedom fighters for another round of talks. This time the Sinhala government should show good faith by implementing the decisions arrived at such talks if any. Let us not kid ourselves that we are concerned about what is happening in Sri Lanka and ‘tamiz Izam’ in particular. The international community should put action before taking sides, only on the recommendations of a few journalists who are well oiled, not well informed by Sinhala lobbyists.

Let me end today’s chapter with a quotation from Corinthians taken from the New World Translation of The Holy Scriptures:

"Stay awake, stand firm in the faith, carry on as men, grow mighty." (Corinthians 15.13)

continued

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