The broken cyanide chain

‘It’s a tragic incident, that’s all’ was all Prabhakaran had to say about Rajiv Gandhi’s assassination twelve years after he executed it. He, however, didn’t have much say about the numerous Tamil leaders whom he ruthlessly eliminated. That’s notwithstanding the hundreds of Indian soldiers, Sinhalese civilians, and thousands of Sri Lankan Tamils who died in these three decades.

As the proverbial final nails begin to fall on Velupillai Prabhakaran’s coffin, it is worth relaxing in your couch to think about how one man caused so much of destruction in the world.

The mad and obdurate battle waged by Prabhakaran’s terrorist outfit has damaged peace in the South Asia for well over twenty five years. Having eliminated other Tamil leaders like Siri Sabharathinam, Amirthalingam, Lakshmanan Kadirgamar, Padmanabha, and countless others, LTTE, having no competition at all, assumed the role of the sole representatives of Sri Lankan Tamil’s interests. With that, Prabhakaran consolidated his hold over the Northern and Eastern region and began to rule it with iron hand. Extorting money from the Diaspora community, making various weapon deals, and hence flush with funds, the militant outfit went onto acquire military capabilities. Playing hide-and-seek with the Colombo leadership, the tigers used peace talk buffers to upgrade their weapons and fortify their hideouts. Any dissent, whether it came from inside or outside, was eliminated brutally. Having honed their warring capabilities, the Tigers decided on to acquire propaganda skills. Internet, TV, sponsored leaders in Tamil Nadu, and spokespersons across the world sang peons in a desperate attempt to make LTTE look clean and good. Some of the trained demagogues indeed made a fine job of defending the indefensible.

Meanwhile, civilians continued to die, the economy of the island continued to shrink and the world began to lose their patience. As the most dreaded terrorist of the planet continued to wreck havoc, Sri Lankan army decided to beat him in his own game. While peace talks continued, the army, a weak band not better than NCC cadets, trained, upgraded and expanded themselves for the final assault. LTTE – the group that brought infamy to the term ‘Tamil’, which otherwise was known for the great civilisation, amazing battery of literature and a hardworking, peace loving community – was in for a nasty surprise when the Sri Lankan government abruptly called off the ceasefire and decided to wage war. As the unexpected war broke the backbone of the tigers, clamour for ceasefire began. The oiled propaganda machines were kicked off and the B leaders of Tamil Nadu who were on the payroll began to whip up emotions. When the war raised its pitch the horrified world stood helplessly at the loss of civilian lives. Tigers, who had tested the beta version of Human Shield during their battle with the IPKF, this time used the most sophisticated version of Human Shield with the latest capabilities: wounded children, women and hospitals. The B leaders and the Diaspora organs cried foul in the deepest pitch accusing Sri Lanka of genocide.

The ploy didn’t work. Nobody, just nobody, seemed interested in intervening. Including Karunanidhi, the glorious leader of all the Tamils in the world, the protector, the benevolent, the mightiest and the most powerful living Tamilian eventually failed to protect the Tigers. As Karunanidhi busied himself in his only goal in life, that of expanding the power and financial base of his immediate family, the army continued its campaign with renewed aggression. Though the fears of some kind of international intervention halting the war loomed, thankfully, the world stood at the sidelines and watched the tigers getting crushed whilst offering mere lip service and some obligatory tears for the dying civilians.

Finally, yes…, the campaign has come to an end now. The era of terror is over. At least in one part of the world. The most powerful, most dreaded, ruthless, and megalomaniac terrorist leader has been kicked out of this planet. As thousands of civilians flee desperately hoping for a few morsels, the world is heaving a big sigh of relief. The morsels will come. Life will return, albeit limping, to those human shields. Those who were on the payroll will go finding a new job elsewhere. The organs will fall silent. The Ring has been drowned in the Mount Doom. The towers of Sauron won’t take long to crumble. Devoid of their leader, the Orcs will run away and will never return.

Jaffna can hope to become a Shire again.