(July 07, 2010, Colombo - Lanka Polity
)Many Russians feel real psychological comfort in feeling surrounded by the enemy. For politicians, it can also be used as a means of evading responsibility. I remember a conversation I had with a journalist some time ago, who reported listening in on a cabinet meeting with Fidel Castro at a time when Cuba had long been the subject of an American naval blockade. According to this story, Fidel is supposed to have pointed out of the window at the silhouettes of American war ships scattered across the horizon, and said: “if they went, we’ll be forced to make them out of cardboard”.
-Alexei Levinson, Sociologist, senior researcher at the Levada Center, Moscow
The position of The Enemy of Sri Lanka government is vacant since Tamil rebel leader Velupillai Prabakaran was assassinated on May 18, 2009 in the battlefront in Vanni. Although the Tamil Ealam struggle tries to appear as it is not over, the government supported by former deputy leader and the international leader of the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Ealam (LTTE) looks confident to tackle the threat of the half-hearted Tamil Diaspora.
The government's attempts to depict Tamil Diaspora as a formidable enemy was not successful not because it was not a non-enemy but simply because it is not discernible to the majority Sinhala polity to get them mobilized. It seems not tangible to them. The leaders in Tamil Diaspora do not have attractive names. The persons like Rudrakumaran have meek appearance in photos. Other Tamil heroes are so timid that they are afraid even to pose in photo.
The government could have saved their man Kumaran Pathmanathan alias KP, the self-proclaimed successor of Prabakaran out in the Tamil Diaspora. KP had a substantial personality to create a fear psychosis locally. Unfortunately, he lost it following the Malaysian apprehension saga in which he was brought to Sri Lanka like a chic.
A low intensity guerrilla warfare could have been a better alternate for a mighty enemy like Prabakaran, if there was one. The government could have tried one themselves. A new Prabakaran could be fictionized, may be one like Osama Bin Laden. A fictitious enemy is better since it can take any shape unlike a real one.
After all, here comes Ban Ki-Moon, the General Secretary of the United Nations. This man, or better say, this position is not a new found enemy. Many a rogue state previously have used him (never her so far) as an enemy to manage internal politics.
Sri Lanka government or the ruling Rajapaksa family has meticulously planned the violent protest before the UN office in Colombo on July 06. The President has sent his 'political' son (his words) Wimal Weerawansa to lead the mob. Even the man's attire is significant. A short-sleeved bush coat with close resemblance to military fatigue. with Lenin-style cap.
The hullabaloo the organized mob created before the UN office created powerful images. However, it is yet to be seen if the penetration is enough for an emergence of a wave of protest that can undermine the social repercussions of the issues like the loss of European Union's GSP Plus, the warnings from US regarding its GSP, broken promise of Rs. 2500 pay hike, ballooning cost of living and more taxes etc.
The government cannot continue providing support and infrastructure like people, transport etc. If Wimal is the contractor, he will have to form a sustainable protest movement within a short period of time. Wimal will not like the JVP be contracted again although it is the best option for the government. The JVP has already taken the Ban Ki-Moon's committee for an island wide poster campaign.
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