Our review of The Cage by Gordon Weiss elicited an interesting question. Under the monicker Burning_Issue, the comment asked for advice on how best to engage with the Rajapaksa regime, and what the (Tamil) diaspora should do two years after the war ended. The comment is worth reading in full, and the most pertinent section is as follows,
I am an expat Sri Lankan Tamil living in the West; I know the majority of the Tamils never wanted a separate state, but prefer that the Tamils should be allowed to live with dignity and security. They need to be able exercise their right to Tamil language on par with the Sinhala. Obviously; given what you have written; the MR regime would not address the Tamil concerns. Against this backdrop, what would you suggest that the Tamil Diaspora should do? There is so much they can do in terms of monetary and technical assistances, but perceive the MR regime as insincere and untrustworthy. What is your advice to someone like me?
This is not a new question or problematic. Tens of thousands have read content published on Groundviews dealing with this vexed challenge. Some of the best read and most commented on content includes,
- The Tamil Diaspora and the Future of the Tamil Struggle, Nirmanusan Balasundaram
- An open letter to the Remote Control Diaspora by Marisa de Silva
- Tamil Diaspora in Post-War Sri Lanka, by Arun-Pillai Essex
- Fighting Windmills? Diaspora and Militarism in Post-Conflict Lanka by Darini Rajasingham Senanayake
- Lazy Academics and a Diaspora Without Direction by Karen
- National referendums and the aspirations of a diaspora: a Saturday morning reflection by Chaminda Weerawardhana
- Eelam experiments: The transnational versus local realities, by Tanuja Thurairajah
And on a related note,
- Post-war Sri Lanka: A conversation with Shanthi Sachithananthan
- Interview with Prof. Kumar David
- Ground realities in Jaffna and its environs: Two key perspectives, featuring Dr. Muttukrishna Sarvananthan and Sherine Xavier
- The Future Tamil Politics by Balasundaram Nirmanusan
Lots more content here.
At the time of writing, and inspiring this post, are two comments in response to the one from Burning_Issue. MV avers that “As far as the diaspora is concerned, they have only limited/little capacity to effect anything in Sri Lanka, that is if they utilize it.” Dagobert cautions against opening old wound, noting that “Burning issue…. Do not start the fire. Lets leave the Nandikadal matter that ended (02) years ago to REST. We have also received feedback on Facebook, suggesting that this is a challenge not just for the Tamil diaspora, but for the Sinhala diaspora as well.
Our interest is in taking forward this dialog. We hope you’ll join with fresh ideas, experiences and issues to be mindful of, in the spirit of engagement this site encourages.