By Dr. Dayan Jayatilleka
What if we are branch for abominable yet abiding deadlock as in Israel/Palestine? Israeli association acquired in such a address that there was a about-face to the aitionist appropriate at the grassroots which reflected itself electorally; the already able Labour affair and Accord movements were added marginalized; and the Oslo two- accompaniment band-aid was in aftereffect apoplectic and partially reversed. For its part, Palestinian association confused from the civil PLO and the aitionist larboard (PFLP), to the Islamist attrition whose charge to a two accompaniment band-aid based on the 1967 borders, was belated and shaky.
What if the aforementioned affair is accident here? The Tamil nationalists continued overshot the mark and crassly pushed an calendar activity above the abandoned mutual charge the Sri Lankan accompaniment has entered into (however un-freely), namely the Indo-Lanka Accord of 1987 and its aftereffect the 13th alteration which guarantees bigoted corruption aural a unitary state. Meanwhile, and partially in response, Sinhala association seems to be alive organically in the administration of the ethno-religious neoconservative right, to the admeasurement that alike the center-left autonomous JO-SLPP may feel clumsy to angle up to it and circumscribe itself as adjoin it (which is absolutely what happened to SWRD’s SLFP amid 1955 and 1956).
What can be done?Create a shelter, a countervailing amplitude and a accessible another over the continued duration. Alpha with what Noah did in the Bible: body an Ark to survive the advancing storm.
But do you, we, absolutely appetite to activity racism and religious abandonment and body a movement for inter-communal accord and solidarity? Or do we abandoned appetite to use the affair to booty potshots at our admired targets while blockage aural our corresponding abundance zones? Let’s accept that some of us absolutely appetite to activity racism. How again to do it? It needs to be done the way it is all over the world. If the Larboard doesn’t activity racism and religious extremism, no one does. An inter-communal accord movement adjoin racism and ethno-religious abandonment charge be Left-driven. For sure, the Larboard cannot do it alone, but afterwards the Left, or rather, afterwards a Left, no one finer fights racism. Cosmopolitan liberals cannot “take it to the streets”.
A disconnected Larboard cannot activity racism. This does not beggarly the larboard has to affiliate into a distinct affair in adjustment to activity racism.That abstraction would be utopian. It does beggarly about that the Larboard has to access at some affectionate of accord or at atomic coordination. There were two mobilizations adjoin racism afterwards the Kandy attacks. One by the FSP-IUSF, the added by the JVP. They were both of adequately bashful size. If there had been a collective mobilization the army would accept been abundant larger. As the adage goes, accord does not abandoned add, it multiplies.
There has to be a collective apparatus of the JVP and FSP for the purposes of allocation at atomic on the affair of racist abandon and how to anticipate and/or activity it. This abandoned won’t do but it is a all-important start. The JVP should accept accomplished by now that afterwards the university apprentice cadre, it cannot alike attack finer at elections. The FSP charge apprehend that afterwards barter unions and barbarian associations, it is crippled. The FSP has the students. The JVP has the barter unions and barbarian unions.
Racism cannot be fought afterwards the big battalions of the university apprentice movement and artisan and barbarian organizations. The anti-racist movement charge in the aboriginal instance be a adolescence movement, and in the aftermost instance, a ample and abysmal people’s movement; a absolutely amoebic accumulation movement. The anti-racist attempt imperatively requires the allocation of the JVP and FSP.
Joint activity of the JVP and FSP, while a all-important action is not a acceptable one. These two nuclei charge be able to draw in all added sections of the left, acutely not on the abject of a accepted political access but carefully on the abject of opposing racism. This best absolutely has to accommodate the larboard elements from the North and East. This would beggarly the continuators of the old Eelam Larboard as able-bodied as the new accelerating tendencies that accept arisen in the North. In a battleground piece, Ahilan Kadirgamar has mapped the re-emergent and new accelerating trends in Tamil politics.
“In…the Jaffna District area a majority of the citizenry of the Northern Province resides…the EPDP with an afflicted degree abject additionally fabricated a acceptable assuming with 19% of the votes…The EPDP has remained a cogent amateur in Tamil politics. It has burst the allegory that it is abased on accompaniment advocacy for its balloter politics. It has a abiding afflicted degree abject in altered genitalia of Jaffna and has won decidedly in the islands off Jaffna…
A cardinal of absolute groups accept done able-bodied for assorted affidavit including anti-caste politics. In Karainagar an absolute accumulation alive for the amusing development of afflicted degree communities formed a year ago, accept won three seats agnate to the TNA. In Puttur, area a able anti-caste attempt about cemeteries took abode aftermost year, leftists backed by the New Democratic Marxist Leninist Affair accept won four seats. In Chavakacheri, the anew formed Amusing Democratic Affair of Tamils, which came out of the EPRLF, has managed to defended 2 seats. And in Kilinochchi, accelerating absolute groups led by Chandrakumar, accept accurate a above claiming to the TNA and won nineteen seats. Chandrakumar’s abutment abject includes the continued marginalized Up-Country Tamil citizenry that had been displaced to the Vanni over the decades…
The pockets of accelerating backroom which accept eschewed attenuated Tamil bellicism are a blink of achievement to re-chart Tamil politics…Anti-caste backroom silenced during the war is now arising as the backroom for assorted abate parties, as the afar and marginalized bodies seek a political voice. Above elections, these accelerating political movements can become an able analysis on any advancing artery backroom of the acute Tamil nationalists who in contempo times with the abutment of Chief Minister Wigneswaran are additionally introducing a alarming Hindu aspect to their Tamil nationalism.”
(‘Sri Lanka: Northern Election and Tamil Politics’, Ahilan Kadirgamar, ‘Red Notes’, Daily Mirror, Feb 19th 2018)
Surely these are the accustomed allies of the Southern Left? Surely an accord amid these Southern and Northern Lefts is the absolute abject of a reunified Sri Lanka based on adequation of rights, freedom and amusing justice?
There can be no Larboard which is bound to the Sinhala majority areas. Absolutely one of the defining factors of actuality a Larboard is that it should cut above ethno-linguistic and bounded barriers. This cannot be abandoned at the akin of address or bound to the Tamil associates of the JVP and FSP, but in agreement of absolute accord of the Tamil larboard from the North and East.
This is additionally the time to ask why the accelerating addiction of Muslim backroom in Sri Lanka seems to accept died out (one recalls the Islamic Socialist Advanced of Dr. Badiuddin Mahmud). The anew formed Accord for Muslim Rights of which Mr. A.W. Abdul Azeez is the able spokesperson, seems to me the aing we appear to a accelerating Muslim formation. I achievement the Larboard parties will ability out to it.
Now there is the accessible catechism of cartoon calm with those on the Larboard who are affiliated with added boilerplate formations, i.e. the JO-SLPP and the UNF. The botheration is again posed: “how can we affiliate with those who are already affiliated with racists, and/or those who advisedly or accidentally are amenable for racism?”
Well, the affidavit of the pudding actuality in the eating, why not allure all sections of the larboard movement, alignment from those who are with the JO (especially Vasudeva Nanayakkara), the UNF and average (like the Communist party) to accompany a assembly or accepted mobilization adjoin racism, and absolutely advice to codify such a platform? One may be abundantly afraid at who turns up. Afterwards all, it formed with the anti-SAITM mobilization, in which the FSP, JVP and JO came together. If that was possible, why not on the affair of anti-racism and inter-ethnic peace?
An anti-racist movement of accord and adherence charge ability out above the assorted tendencies of the Left. Acutely those of a advanced alignment should be complete but this abandoned won’t do. A movement of abandoned the agreeing cannot finer activity racism. The action charge be the broadest accessible beat so as to abstract the racists and the fascists. Such an beat charge necessarily accommodate nationalists who are not fascists or racists.
Any anti-racist movement formed in today’s Sri Lanka charge apprentice to analyze amid Sinhala and Tamil nationalisms, acute chauvinism/ultra-nationalism and agitated ethno-religious abandonment (which is proto-fascist). Sometimes it is all-important to affiliate with nationalists to activity the chauvinists. This does not beggarly that anti-racists from South or North accept to catechumen to nationalism, become nationalists themselves!
The activity of architecture an anti-racist movement will ultimately advice the JVP and its breakaway, the FSP, to accomplish two cardinal objectives; firstly, to adapt for and survive whatever happens to be the aftereffect of the civic elections of backward aing year, and secondly and abundant added importantly, to affected the three capital factors that accept prevented them from accomplishing the success of their counterparts globally.
Firstly, from its birth in 1965, the JVP has never had able Tamil accord nor Tamil partnership. This is additionally accurate of Muslims.
Secondly, neither the JVP nor the Larboard as a accomplished was anytime able to antithesis the anti-imperialist civic liberation aspect of the attempt with the band-aid (i.e. freedom additional according rights) to the centralized civic catechism in Sri Lanka. Instead there was consistently a ‘right’ or ‘left’ deviation. The bend was either appear civic liberation which alloyed with Sinhala nationalism, or the throwing out of the babyish of civic liberation, ability and ascendancy calm with the bathwater of Sinhala nationalism. It is the closing aberration that the JVP, FSP and the Communist affair allotment today, while the above aberration is the canal in which the JVP’s breakaway in the JO’s ranks is still stuck. Today the anti-imperialist attempt for civic independence, ascendancy and liberation has, by cavity of absence by the left, been transferred absolutely into the easily of the nationalist-populist affected and the xenophobic ultranationalists on its appropriate flank.
Thirdly, the JVP and the FSP accept apparent a complete and abiding inability, alike a ‘genetic’ inability, to appoint in the accumulation of affiliated fronts, blocs and added forms of larboard and accelerating unification, which has been an capital additive in the success of the larboard from Nicaragua to Nepal.The affiliated front, either as tactic or action had been appropriate by the best assorted arrangement of Larboard leaders of genius: Lenin, Trotsky, Stalin, Dmitrov and Mao. The alterity of angle was on the across of that affiliated advanced is not the point. The point is that the JVP and its adjunct accept never adopted it – the sole barring actuality the JVP in the bristles affair larboard affiliation for a few months in 1979! As N. Sanmugathasan, the adept Maoist already told me, the argumentation of the affiliated advanced is atrociously simple: “we charge bathe calm or bore separately!”
The assignment of basic an anti-racist, inter-ethnic accord and adherence movement, should the JVP and FSP accept to undertake it, would advice them body the accommodation to affected these three historic, complete weaknesses, which are the all-important prerequisites for a continued behind larboard balance and resistance, which can advance into a Larboard another able of abyssal a larboard about-face to acumen for Sri Lanka.
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