Peace and Conflict

Friday thoughts on the JVP and the LTTE

A few days ago I was looking through old newspapers – clippings from the late 80s.

Back then, the JVP were referred to ‘subversives’ and the terrorists were – um – I guess they must have  been fighting the IPKF and the SL Army.

But the JVP were the ‘subversives’ and in late 1989, their leadership was hunted down and killed. In the next couple of years, the Army and so-called vigilante groups killed tens of thousands of young men and women. A whole generation was wiped out.

I guess the violence by the State put an end to the violence being committed by the JVP. And now, the JVP are in the political system.

So, when the JVP advocate a military solution to the conflict between the LTTE and the GOSL, are they  recalling what happened to them?

If the Army and their vigilante groups  can wipe out the leadership of the LTTE, followed up by the murder of Tiger supporters and sympathisers, will we see the LTTE militarily crippled, re-emerging as a political party a few years down the track?

  • Well, without Bala’s brain, LTTE’s rudderless brawn will sooner or later will plunge itself into self destruction. Bala was the real leader of the LTTE.

  • David Blacker

    I think you’re exaggerating when you say “a whole generation was wiped out”. A few thousand do not a generation make.

    The LTTE upper leadership isn’t accessible (either to vigilante or more conventional strikes), so it’s a moot point. The JVP politburo was knocked out almost in its entirety in a few short weeks; that is very unlikely in the LTTE case. Even a few high-ups are killed, others will take over. The only way to make a real difference is to kill VP, Thamilselvam, and a few other select individuals. But that doesn’t look likely.

  • sid

    There were more than a few thousand Sinhalese youth killed by the security forces. I believe human rights groups place the figure between 40,000 and 60,000.

    I think the Kfiers can hit Thamilselvam if they want to… but that’s all opinion.