Addiction to Murder - why V. Prabhakaran cannot shake off the Killing Habit.
No subject has been so minutely scrutinized and debated with such passion as the 'Terrorist Problem' stemming from the open rebellion by a section of the disaffected Tamils in the North and East of Sri Lanka.. Amazingly, the political leadership of this country adopted a double-faced attitude from the very beginning of the conflict.
While denouncing terrorism they regarded this violent challenge to the sovereignty of a licit and lawful State as a retributive backlash brought on by the wrongs inflicted on the Tamils by a heedless Sinhala majority.
This thesis of 'Sinhala responsibility' for what was seen as the reactive violence of Tamils goaded to desperation by the intransigence of the majority race soon became the standard paradigm in the torrent of exculpatory prose that was released by loose-tongued Politicians, NGOs, Church Officials, Marxists, Free Media Traitors, Bucksheeshed University Dons and plain fools in high positions.
If the apologists and defenders of Tamil Terrorism were drawn exclusively from this motley gang that had the hatred of Sinhala-Buddhism as its binding ideology, the situation would not have been so dire. What gave sinew to this army of quislings is the extraordinary fact that Sinhala leaders of the party in power were as eager in their denunciation of 'majoritarianism' as the worst of those baying from the sidelines.
While nominally Sinhala and, on occasion, ostentatiously Buddhist, they were cultural renegades who saw the mass of rural Sinhala people as an obstreperous proletariat that blocked the modernization of Sri Lanka so ardently desired by the Western-Christian elite of this country. Tamil Terrorism - they argued - is the natural concomitant of the spurious claims of the Sinhala Buddhists to be bhumiputra or first citizens of Lanka.
Friends, I do not wish to rehash this recital of conflict and betrayal
but to point out a deadly paradox. Consider the following luminaries
who were felled ingloriously (or were mortally wounded) by crafty and
ruthless assassins sent by the Great Killer of the North.
What is the common factor that binds this seemingly disparate collection of political heavyweights? They were - one and all - ardent supporters of the Tamil Cause and were prepared to betray the nation through some form of territorial separation that had the sanction of external powers. Regarding Rajiv Gandhi and his mother, the less said the better.
Tamil expansion in Sri Lanka fitted marvelously the schemes of territorial aggrandizement that both mother and son favoured. Prabhakaran was a valuable friend and agent - yet this friend killed his master in an operation that even Bin Laden would have been proud of.
Let's get to Mr Ranasingha Premadasa - a lover and an admirer of Big Chief Prabhakaran and his lethal movement. The facts are too well known to need recalling. His killing was a parricide in the classical sense.
Mr Gamini Dissanayaka is now a forgotten figure. In his heyday he was a most powerful and dangerous politician who openly reviled the Sinhala Buddhist and called for 'justice' to be done to the Tamils by the establishment of an autonomous State in the North and East. Had he become the President, he would have turned out to be Prabhakaran's best friend.
He was blown up (along with leading lights of the UNP) in a Gunpowder Plot the details of which are still murky. These sordid details aside, there is no doubt that massacre was done under Prabhakaran's direction. Mr LV Goonaratna's killing may not have had great political repercussions but his murder seemed senseless because he was a powerful figure in a Catholic Movement that was openly supportive of the Tamils.
Why was a desperate attempt made to kill Chandrika Kumaranatunga? She was an implacable foe of Sinhala Nationalism and her life-work can be summed up as the calculated weakening of the Sinhala State so as to make Tamil Eelam a reality.
When she first assumed high office, she was a sincere friend of Prabhakaran and made audacious moves behind the backs of the foolish Sinhala leaders to make this Warlord the Sovereign of the North and East. That she failed must be put down to accidents of history and circumstance - her desire to ease the path to Eelam has never wavered. She escaped Prabhakaran's bombers by a chance movement into the shadow of her large limousine
Here is the great question - why does Prabhakaran kill his closest friends and admirers? That he kills brutally his foes is understandable - the paradox is the killing of those who grease the pathway to Eelam.
It is here that we must ditch politics and seek explanations in the recesses of the criminal mind. Prabhakaran is more than a troglodytic killer hidden in a bomb-proof bunker - he is the victim of a relentless mania that sees even his closest guards as potential assassins.
He has no hope of ever seeing his Eelam as an ordinary Tamil would see it because such a happy option is foreclosed by decades of fearful butchery that has made the whole world his enemy.
What, then, are his pleasures? To kill someone big and powerful, to gloat in his bunker over the political havoc caused by his killing, to relish the fact that some have come on their knees to escape his wrath - these are the 'pleasures' open to a serial murderer locked in his bunker and forever distanced from the external world.
The answer to the question 'Why does Prabhakaran kill his best friends' is easy - he kills because of the lust and daring involved in such a killing thrills him beyond all measure. The greater the man (or woman) slain, the greater the thrill. That the victim is a friend means nothing to him. To topple a colossus is everything.
Note that his enemies are killed as well - be they close comrades in
arms, rival politicians or stalwarts on the Sinhala side such as Lalith
Athilathmudali and Lakshman Kardirgamar. A great figure felled triggers
a murderous eroticism that is the distinguishing mark of the pathological
This psychological analysis proves one thing beyond a shadow of doubt - that leading politicians in the South cannot escape death by a public espousal of Prabhakaran's cause. Nor can they escape this fate by the non-use of the word 'LTTE' in political discourse for fear of offending the Tyrant.
Their best defence is a screen of bodyguards with sniffer-dogs and
the latest weapons. Even George Bush would not be safe from this serial
scalper if his female suicide bombers had the means to cross the oceans.
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