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Prabhakaran: Powerful symbol of Tamil armed struggle

by D.B.S. Jeyaraj

The evolution and growth of the armed struggle for the goal of Tamil Eelam saw many Tamil militant groups emerge across the politico-military horizon. There was a time when nearly 34 outfits-big and small-existed.

Among all these, the single organization that kept the Tamil armed struggle alive was none other than the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) led by its charismatic leader Thiruvengadam Velupillai Prabhakaran.

From its de-jure birth on May 5th 1976 to its de-facto death on May 18th the LTTE under Prabhakaran fought on relentlessly towards its avowed objective of a separate Tamil state until the very last.

During the emergency period of 1975-77 , Indira Gandhi the Prime Minister of India was praised to the skies by sycophantic partymen. The Congress president of the time DK Baruah publicly proclaimed “Indira is India, India is Indira”.

Likewise the same could be said of Prabhakaran and the LTTE too. “The LTTE is /was Prabhakaran, Prabhakaran is/was LTTE”. The LTTE leader in a way personified the Liberation tigers. In the process he became a powerful, vibrant symbol of the Tamil armed struggle.

Family

Prabhakaran was born on November 26th 1954. He was the youngest in a family of four children. There were two boys and two girls. One of his sisters is in Canada. The other two siblings are in Denmark. His parents who lived in the northern mainland, Wanni, are now displaced and in Vavuniya. They are under protective custody.

His father is Veerasamy Thiruvengadam Velupillai. Prabhakaran’s mother’s name is Paarvathipillai. Her maiden name was also Velupillai. She suffered a stroke recently resulting in an arm and hand being paralysed.

Prabhakaran’s family hailed from the coastal town of Valvettithurai referred to generally as VVT. His father joined the Government clerical service and eventually became a district lands officer. I think he retired from Govt service when the late Gamini Dissanayake was Lands minister.

Prabhakaran’s family was of respected lineage in VVT. They were known as belonging to the “Thirumeni kudumbam” or Thirumeni family. Prabhakaran’s ancestors constructed the famous Sivan temple of VVT. His father should have been the chief trustee but declined to be so as he was in govt service.

The LTTE leader’s father was a duty conscientious mild-mannered gentleman well respected and well-liked. People of VVT used to say that even the grass wouldn’t get crushed when Mr. Velupillai treads on it. Later many comparisons were made about father and younger son. In fact the father disapproved of the son’s path and was not on speaking terms with Prabhakaran for years and years.

Karikalan

The name Prabhakaran denotes the Sun or Sooriyan. Later his acolytes began calling him “Sooriyathevan” or “Sun God”. Being the youngest in the family he was called “Thambi” or younger brother. This pet name continued to be in vogue when he entered militant ranks as he was then perhaps the youngest of all.

Prabhakaran also adopted various names like Mani, Manivannan, Maniam and Karikaalan. It was the latter nom de guerre that he used mostly during the early days. Karikaalan refers to Thirumaavalavan of the Chola dynasty that flew the “Vengai” or Cheeta flag.

Colleagues of an earlier vintage referred to him as “maniyathhar”. Contemporaries continued calling him “thamby”. In later years young tigers used to call him “Annai” or elder brother. After a while it became “Thalaiver” or leader. Formally it was “Thesiya thalaiver” or “national leader”. Colloquially he would be called “perisu” or the big one.

Prabhakaran studied at different schools in Jaffna, Vavuniya and Batticaloa because his father was constantly transferred. The schools he studied for many years were Government College (Now Mahajana) B’caloa and Chidampara College, VVT. He was not a model student and did not even pass his GCE O’levels.

This does not mean that he was unintelligent or did not possess a thirst for knowledge. It was due to Prabhakaran being interested in other things rather than in formal education.

History

He had a photogenic memory and was an avid reader. He was particularly fond of reading history-about historical battles and historical figures.

Some of his famous historical figures were Napoleon and Alexander. The Indian freedom struggle fascinated him. He read the Tamil version of Mahatma Gandhi’s autobiography “Satya Sodhanai” in his early teens but was not enamoured of it greatly.

His ideal and idol was Netaji or Subash Chandra Bose. Netaji had ideological differences with the Mahatma about the mode of struggle for independence. At one stage he disapporoved of Gandhi’s “non-violence” and went on to form the Indian National Army (INA) to launch an armed struggle against the British.

Subsequently Chandra Bose joined forces with the Germans and Japanese to fight the British. He died in a mysterious aeroplane accident. Netaji’s famous pronouncement was “I shall fight for the freedom of my land until I shed my last drop of blood”. Prabhakaran subscribed to these sentiments whole-heartedly.

Apart from Netaji , Prabhakaran was also impressed by the Sikh freedom fighter Bhagat Singh who was sentenced to the gallows by the British rulers.Two freedom fighters from Tamil Nadu also made an impact on young Prabhakaran.

One was Vaanchinaatha Iyer who shot the Tirunelvely district collector Ashe dead at the Maniaachchi railway station. When chased by the Police Vaanchinaathan shot himself. The other was Thiruppoor Kumaran who withstood heavy beating by the Police but would not let go of the Bharatmatha flag. He was hailed as “Kodi Kaatha Kumaran” (Kumaran who saved the flag).

Hard as it may be for many to believe there was a quiet, spiritual aspect also to Prabhakaran. The “Ithihasam” (epic) Mahabharatham enthralled him. The characters he identified with were Bheema and Karna.

Prabhakaran also read the Tamil translations of Swami Vivekananda’s writings and speeches avidly. Another spiritual person he looked up to was Thirumuga Kirupananda Vaariyaar popularly called “vaariyaar”.

Gita

It is the Mahabharatha that relates the tale of Lord Krishna advising the wavering Arjuna on the battlefield “kurushetra”. The Pandavas and Gouravas (cousins) had assembled to do battle but Arjuna hesitates to fight against his kith and kin and lets slip his bow “Kaandeepam”.

Lord Krishna then tenders advice to him that each person is destined to fulfill his or her duty. It was the warrior’s duty to kill his adversary regardless of kinship. Killing the “body” of the enemy was part of heroic valour. The essence of Lord Krishna’s lecture is the “Bhagavat Gita”.

Prabhakaran was greatly enamoured of principles enunciated in the Gita. In the Tamil film “Karnan” based on the Mahabharatha Lord Krishna is played by NT Rama Rao and Arjuna by Mutturaman. The Gita episode is picturised as a song Maranathai Enni Kalangidum Vijaya.” This was one of Prabhakaran’s favourite songs. It’s sung by Seerkali Govindarajan.

mp3: [Karnan: Lord Krishna explains his actions-Tamil movie sequence and song]

One person who opined that Prabhakaran had inculcated the philosophy of the Gita was former Indian High Commissioner to Sri Lanka Jyotindra Nath Dixit. This was during the time when LTTE was fighting the Indian Army. I could see that Dixit meant it as a “compliment” when he said this.

On an earlier occasion Dixit told me that of all the top Tamil militant leaders only Prabhakaran had “fire” in him. This was after Dixit met for the first time all leaders of the five big groups. Umamaheswaran-PLOTE, Sri Sabaratnam-TELO, Padmanabha-EPRLF, Balakumar-EROS and of course Prabhakaran-LTTE.

I also recall a conversation in early 1985 with former national security minister Lalith Athulathmudali. Long before the Indo-Lanka accord of 1987, Athulathmudali predicted that all the Tamil groups will give up the struggle and fall in line. But not Prabhakaran, said Lalith then. “He will never compromise and will die fighting to the last” he said. How True!

Reading

Prabhakaran was also fond of reading Tamil novels particularly those with a historical background. His favourite apparently was “Ponniyin Selvan” the magnum opus of “Kalki” (R. Krishnamoorthy). This is about Prince Arulmolivarman who evolved into the great Chola emperor Raja Raja Cholan.

He also liked the historical novels of Akhilan and Chandilyan.

[Venkayin Mainthan-by Akhilan-pic:Chandrachoodan Gopalakrishnan]

“Venkayin Mainthan” and “Kayal Vizhi” by Akhilan and “Yavana Raani”, “Kadal Puraa” and “Jalatheepam” by Chandilyan were his favourites by these two. When the LTTE bought its first maritime vessel it was named “Kadal Puraa” (sea dove) after Chandilyan’s novel.

Yet, the Tamil novel read again and again by Prabhakaran was “Kallukkul Eeram” (moisture in a stone) by RS Nallaperumaal. It is set against the backdrop of India’s freedom struggle against the British.

The chief protagonist Rangamani is one who does not believe in Gandhi’s “ahimsa” mode of struggle and espouses violence as the appropriate method to liberate India. No wonder then that Praba loved this novel. But there is a change of heart in the end but for the real life protagonist there was no moisture in the stone.

Prabhakaran was very much interested in contemporary affairs and international politics. A former comrade at arms of Prabhakaran, Thalayasingham Sivakumar alias Anton Master told me how the LTTE subscribed to “Time” and “Newsweek” those days. Praba would ask friends knowledgeable in English to translate and explain articles.

In later years when the LTTE developed into a full-fledged outfit, important articles from magazines and newspapers were translated into Tamil for Prabakharan’s consumption. Also many books on military affairs and warfare were translated into Tamil.

Puritan

As a schoolboy, Prabhakaran like most youngsters of his age was fond of cycling and playing volley ball and soccer. But he was no sportsman and preferred to read or watch action films.

He has been ridiculed often for telling an American journalist that he learnt his fighting techniques from Clint Eastwood movies. But what happened really was that the US scribe was questioning him whether he had been trained in Cuba. It was as a joke that Prabha responded citing Eastwood.

Another pursuit in boyhood was the targeting of squirrels, lizards. Chameleons and small birds with a catapult. As a kid Praba would prowl about areas of dense vegetation searching for his quarry.

His memory power was legendary. Prabhakaran would remember faces, names and the last time he had seen someone years ago. His eyes were always sharp and roving taking in the surrounding area and ever on the alert. His eyes were large and striking and was teased as “muliyan” (goggle-eye)

Prabhakaran was also a “puritan” in many ways. He neither drank nor smoked and even advocated sexual abstinence for all in the early days of the movement. Order and cleanliness was almost an obsession. He was a stickler for discipline.

Cook

He was always neatly dressed preferring “bush shirts” and short-sleeved shirts. The bush shirt was helpful as it covered hidden firearms. It is said that even during the early stages of militancy when there was an acute shortage of funds, Prabhakaran would wash and iron his few clothes regularly and always maintain a dapper appearance.

He was a good cook and also fond of good food. He relished Chinese cuisine. Prabhakaran was also fond of Pittu, coconut sambol and Fried shrimp. He also liked Iguana and tortoise flesh. He liked fruits and natural bee’s honey.

Usually LTTE cadres under punishment are assigned duties in the kitchen. Prabhakaran would encourage cadres to cook saying “only a good cook can be a good guerilla”.

He would often cook or help out in the kitchen when at home. A close relative who visited him once was flummoxed to see the feared guerilla leader busily scraping coconuts in the kitchen.

Prabhakaran’s attitude and political thinking was shaped by contemporary events and environment. The gruesome tales he heard as a four year old child about the 1958 anti-Tamil violence impacted greatly.

One day Prabhakaran’s home had a woman visitor whose legs were scarred by burns. Upon inquiring the little boy was told that the woman’s home had been set on fire by a “Sinhala” mob. She had escaped with burns.

Valvettithurai

Young Praba also heard the famous story of the Brahmin priest in Panadura being burnt to death in a bonfire and also about the infant thrown into a tar barrel. All these tales made an indelible impression.

Being a native of Valvettithurai was another factor in making a militant out of Prabhakaran. VVT had acquired a reputation for smuggling and had a sub-culture of its own. “Operation Monty” was launched by the armed forces in post-independence Sri Lanka to check and counter illicit immigration and smuggling.

This necessitated the setting up of security camps in VVT from the early fifties of the last century. There was much friction as a result of this hostile, “alien” presence.This in turn led to a confrontational mood prevailing between the people and armed forces long before the political crisis escalated in the seventies.

It was in this environment that Prabhakaran and a host of other VVT youth grew up. As Sathasivampillai Krishnakumar alias Kittu and Gopalswamy Mahendrarajah alias Mahathaya explained to me on different occasions, many youths of their generation grew up in VVT with anger and resentment towards the armed forces and by extension the government in Colombo held responsible.

Prabhakaran growing up in this atmosphere got politically motivated in the late sixties and early seventies of the previous century. This was when former Kayts MP. V. Navaratnam roke away from the Ilankai Thamil Arasu Katchi (ITAK) known as Federal Party (FP) in English.

Navaratnam

Navaratnam once described as the “golden brain” of the FP formed the “Thamilar Suyaatchi Kazhagham” or Tamil Self-Rule party in 1968. Navaratnam abandoned the federal demand as being too little and too late and instead opted for “suyaatchi” or “self-rule” a euphemism of sorts for a separate state.

There was a pedagogue named Venugopal master for whom Prabhakaran had great regard and respect. Venugopal master became an active supporter of Navaratnam. Several students including Prabhakaran became his followers and turned into ardent devotees of Tamil self-rule.

The Suyaatchi Kazhagham also started a newspaper “Viduthalai” (Liberation/Freedom). Navaratnam himself translated and serialized “Exodus” the famous novel written by Leon Uris. It was named “Namakkendroru Naadu” (A Country of our own) Young Prabhakaran eagerly devoured it and became hooked on the dream of a country for Tamils.

The Tamil self-rule party was defeated in the 1970 polls. No candidate including Navaratnam won. But the seeds of self-rule sowed in the campaign had taken firm root in the heart and mind of “Thamby” Prabhakaran.

Radicalised

With the introduction of standardization in 1970 the student population of Jaffna began getting radicalized. The Tamil Maanavar Peravai (Tamil students federation) and Tamil Ilaingar Peravai (Tamil youth federation) were formed. A series of meetings , processions and rallies were held.

Prabhakaran himself began participating in some of these activities. His first experience of a protest demonstration was in 1971 when former Posts and Telecommunications minister Chelliah Kumarasuriar visited Velanai to open a new post office.Tamil youths staged a black flag demonstration.

Prabhakaran also attended most of the Tamil student and youth activist meetings. Soon “thamby” began losing interest in meetings and non-violent agitation.These were too tame for him. Greatly inspired by tales of Israel’s Hagannah and Irgun, Prabhakaran became firmly convinced that Sri Lankan state oppression could be resisted only through force.

It was then that Prabhakaran wanted to buy a gun and practise shooting. There was a notorious “chandiyan” (thug) then in Point Pedro called Sambandan. He sold guns illegally. When Prabhakaran approached him for one, Sambandan priced an old pistol at 150 rupees.

Prabhakaran and some like-minded youths pooled their resources and came up with the princely sum of 40 rupees. Undeterred Prabhakaran sold his gold ring. This had been given him by his elder brother in law.

As was the custom the younger brother of the bride, Prabhakaran ,poured water on the bridegroom’s feet when he entered the bride’s house and got rewarded. This was how he acquired his first firearm.

Prabhakaran began training clandestinely. A retired soldier helped him. By now the youth was beginning to attract the attention of the Police. When the police started making inquiries about a “mani” Prabha knew what was in store.

Photograph

He left home one day to embark on his avowed vocation. Anticipating future problems Prabhakaran removed and destroyed every single photograph in the house with his picture.

When the Police caught up with him they could not get a proper picture of him and had to use only the postal identity card used by Prabhakaran to sit for examinations.

In 1982 May, Prabhakaran alias Karikalan and Sivakumar alias Raghavan of the LTTE had a shoot-out with Umamaheswaran alias Muhunthan and Jotheeswaran alias Kannan at Pondy Bazaar in Chennai. Prabhakaran was arrested and photographed and it was only then that Colombo got an up to date photo of him.

Prabhakaran teamed up with some others and formed the Tamil New Tigers. Apparently some of the old timers like Rajaratnam of Nunaavil had formed a Tiger group to fight for Tamil rights in the early sixties. This never got off the ground.

Tamil New Tigers

Prabhakaran had begun interacting with Rajaratnam and felt the new movement should be a “revival” of sorts. Hence Tamil new tigers (TNT). The acronym TNT was also applicable for the explosive compound “Trinitrotoluene”.

The TNT was led by Thanabalasingham alias Chetty of Kalviyankaadu. When the Police cracked down and began arresting prominent youth activists, Prabhakaran gave the slip and crossed over by sea to Tamil Nadu. He was to shuttle back and forth frequently in the seventies.Prabhakaran was never arrested.

Several other youth groups also emerged and engaged in acts of violence. The TNT made its mark in July 1975 with the assassination of former Jaffna MP and Mayor Alfred Durayappah as he was going to worship at the Ponnaalai Varatharajapperumaal (Vishnu) temple. Four youths including Prabhakaran were involved in the murder. Later Prabhakaran went on record that this killing was his “first military action”.

Tigers

The TNT metamorphosed into the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) on May 5th 1976. The Tamil United Front (TUF) held its famous Vaddukkoddai Convention nine days later on May 14th 976. It was then that the TUF became TULF (Tamil United Liberation Front) and adopted the Tamil Eelam demand formally.

The TULF contested on the separatist platform in July 1977. It won 18 of 19 Tamil seats in the North-East and claimed it had a mandate for Tamil Eelam. Years later the LTTE was to say it was acting in terms of the TULF mandate.

When Prabhakaran was in the JSC (Grade eight) class one of his textbooks was “Thirumavalavan”. This was about the Chola emperor Karikalan under whose rule the “pulikkodi” (tiger flag) had supposedly fluttered proudly from “Imayam muthal Kumari” (Himalayas to Cape Comorin) . Thus Prabhakaran was fascinated by Karikalan and the tiger flag.

“puli” in Tamil denotes the tiger but the tiger on the Chola flag was the “Vengai” or cheetah. It is a far cry from the Bengal tiger on the LTTE flag now. In any case there are no tigers in Sri Lanka. We have only the leopard here. But then we have no lions but our national flag has one. In a sense the rifle-crossed tiger flag was a direct response to the sword-bearing lion.

Prabhakaran known as Mani and Maniam earlier soon took the nom de guerre Karikalan . When arrested in Pondy bazaar it was that name on police records. Later Prabhakaran’s wireless codename was HA or Hotel Alpha. This was derived from Karikalan where Kari became Hari and then HA.

The Chola emperor got the name Karikalan because he was caught in a fire and had his legs burnt. Karikalan means “dark or black legs”. Prabhakaran too had a similar experience while experimenting with explosives. There was an explosion and his legs were burnt. The skin was dark for years. Thus “karikalan” suited him appropriately.

When the LTTE was formed in 1976 Prabhakaran was only its military commander. The leader and chairman of the five-member central committee of the LTTE was Umamaheswaran. Praba was also a CC member.

Cupid

The LTTE fragmented in 1980 and Umamaheswaran formed the PLOTE. The LTTE under Prabhakaran had a working relationship with the TELO led by Thangathurai and Kuttimani. In 1981 the LTTE re-grouped under the absolute leadership of Prabhakaran. Thereafter it was a virtual one-man dictatorship.

Cupid or “Manmathan” struck Prabhakaran with his arrows in 1983-84.

Some displaced undergraduates were on a death fast at the Jaffna university premises in 1983 september. When the condition of some girls deteriorated the LTTE broke the fast and abducted those fasting. They were brought to Tamil Nadu.

At one stage four of the abducted girls stayed at the residence of Anton and Adele Balasingham and used to accompany them to the LTTE office in Indranagar. The fairest and prettiest of them all was Madhivadhani Erambu. Her father Erambu was a schoolmaster from Pungudutheevu in Jaffna.

During the Indian “Holi” festival people spray coloured powder and coloured water on each other. Madhivadhani held a bet with her friends and boldly drenched Prabhakaran with turmeric dissolved water. Praba was furious and berated her. Madhi started sobbing.

Hours later when the tiger supremo was leaving the office , he found her in a corner weeping.He went up to her and spoke softly asking her not to cry. Madhivathani looked up at him with tear-filled eyes. Praba’s heart was pierced.

[..They married in 1984]

Thereafter Prabhakaran began visiting the Balasingham’s frequently. He brought flowers and sweets for Madhi. Prabhakaran had been a shy, introverted person and had never mingled with girls outside his family. This was a new experience. Anton Balasingham encouraged the romance. They married in 1984.

Children

There was a hitch. The LTTE code of conduct tabooed marriage. So the top commanders were summoned to Tamil Nadu and a Central committee meeting convened.

There a new regulation was introduced enabling those with five years experience to marry. The Madhi-Praba marriage took place in a temple with senior tiger commanders including KP in attendance.

They had three children. The eldest was named Charles Anthony born in 1985. He was named after Praba’s best friend and military commander Charles Anthony alias Seelan who died in Meesalai, Chavakachcheri.

The next was Duvaraga the daughter born in 1986. She was named after a favourite bodyguard Mayooran whose real name was Duvaaragan. The third was a son born in 1997. He was named Balachandran after Madhivathani’s own brother who also joined the LTTE and died in combat.

[In Jaffna, 1987]

The demise of Prabhakaran along with family members and senior commanders marks the end of an eventful chapter in the long drawn out struggle of the Tamil people to achieve equal rights in the Island of Sri Lanka.

D.B.S.Jeyaraj can be reached at djeyaraj2005@yahoo.com

291 Comments

  1. Concerned+Worried Thamizhachchi says:

    Hello Annoi,

    Yet again, well written piece. It gives another side of the “Charismatic leader”, as you have correctly identified.

    It is interesting to note that ,another spiritual person he looked up to was Thirumuga Kirupananda Vaariyaar popularly called “vaariyaar”.

    His dream did not come true, and the Tamils in Sri Lanka continue to suffer:-(

    May his soul rest in PEACE!

  2. Selvan says:

    DBS – you come out with the best stuff. Informative and thorough. Keep them coming, we need more people like you in journalism.
    Much appreciated in these dark times.

  3. V.C.Vijayaraghavan says:

    Thanks for an excellent account of VP, DBSJ. I hope someone goes around recording the reminiscences of VP from as many sources as possible. VP , for all his faults, is definitely set in a heroic mold. My disappointment with him is that he was the right man at the right place at the right time doing wrong things. He was a flawed hero.

    Goodbye Prabhakaran. May your soul rest in peace. I am sure one day your dream of dignified existence of Elam Tamils will be realized

    Vijayaraghavan

  4. Raj says:

    Good Article DB.
    Keep it up.

  5. Panhinda says:

    look, you could even say Mugabe also highly ‘committed’ to Zimbabwe.

    And Mahinda,Gota, Sarath, Basil, Wimal, Champika etc are “committed” to Sri Lanka……..DBSJ

  6. Helaka U says:

    You seem to be glorifying a beast who butchered so many people (of all races) and took our country back centuries. VP and his pipe dream got what it deserved from the military. He died a coward whilst trying to escape death after failing in his plan to hold civilians as a human shield to protect him and his bunch of goons.

    I dont think you know what glorifying means. You’ve also failed to understand this piece……DBSJ

  7. Nitharshan says:

    Interesting. I always thought the Chola insignia was a seated tiger. I suppose it is difficult to tell a tiger from a cheetah from old Chola coins.

    Also, isn’t his father from Kerala?

    Despite all the mistakes, Prabhakaran was probably the best Tamil military commander since the ancient Tamil kingdoms. His major problem was that he was mainly a military-oriented man. He could have used the ceaseless waves operation victories to obtain autonomy for the NorthEast. Unfortunately, it seems those military victories only strengthened his view that Tamil Eelam could be achieved through further military action.

  8. Anjana says:

    It feels like you bracketed “off” politics while you wrote this piece. An analysis is needed to explain the virulent turn that Tamil struggle took with the anihilation of groups such as TELO, EPRLF and PLOTE. Tamils describes themselves as “educated people” and yet, all of us watched LTTE growing into a ruthless, fascist force. I do understand many intellectuals who did stand up to the LTTE such as Rajani Thiranagama and Neelan Tiruchelvam were gunned down. Majority of Tamils treated politics much the way they treated religion in Jaffna–like a blind faith, never stopping to question actions and politics that seemed absurd and counter productive. You are few of the independent-minded persons who have routinely questioned LTTE actions that were detrimental to Tamil welfare: why did they force Tamils to boycott elections, and thereby help Rajapaksa to come into power? I hope you will write more without bracketing politics out?

    Thank you

  9. timhortons says:

    oh great. Here comes ‘ltte paid dbsj’ accusations :)

  10. The80Factor says:

    I see this an attempt (by you) to put a full stop writing about Mr. VP in the future? He was too big to fail but he at the end. I guess we all are humans.

    Can you say that Col.Theepan was the last LEADER to attain martyrdom fighting to save his people in the last days of LTTE? How sad, VP died fighing to save his own life and used his fellow combrates for that purpose too.

    I wonder if post Pirapakaran era will work in favor or against the minorities, Tamils? You didn’t mention that?

  11. The80Factor says:

    I see this as an attempt (by you) to put a full stop writing about Mr. VP in the future? He was too big to fail but he DID at the end.

    I guess we all are humans (NOT SUN GODS).

    Can you say that Col.Theepan was the last LEADER to attain martyrdom fighting to save his people in the last days of LTTE? How sad, VP died fighting to save his own life and used his fellow commanders for that purpose too.

    I wonder if post Pirapakaran era will work in favor or against the minorities, Tamils? You didn’t mention that?

  12. Wijeyanathan says:

    Who really cares whether Pirabakaran likes Pittu and perefers half-sleeve shirts? The man is a brutal murderer and sick maniac who knows only killing. The media portrayed him as a larger than life hero. He is an ordinary coward, who got to the top by eliminating every other alternative. At the end, he surrendered to the forces, probably with the hands up. He didnt even have the guts to kill himself.

    (If he committed suicide, how did this intact body ended up in the hands of the amry?)

    Prabhakaran was a powerful symbol of Tamil armed struggle.Period…….DBSJ

  13. Pramod says:

    “Netaji’s famous pronouncement was “I shall fight for the freedom of my land until I shed my last drop of blood”. Prabhakaran subscribed to these sentiments whole-heartedly.”

    and VP executed it with a small amendment…

    I shall fight for the freedom of my land until I shed my “peoples” last drop of blood.

  14. ATL says:

    The end of your article is exactly how I see Tamil’s political struggle. It is end of a violent chapter. I only hope the next chapter will not portray us to the International community wrongly as terrorist. We should use the tactfulness used by our politicians before the nineties. Everyone knows there were war crimes committed by GOSL. No one….no one is able to charge, and to save the escaped refugees.
    Can someone stop the SLA and the paramilitary from taking and making the refugees from disappearing. This has to be done IMMEDIATELY. All refugees should be registered and all surrendering LTTE cadets should be registered and rehabilitated.
    Let us not go witch hunting the LTTE supporters. Vengeance will drag all of us to annihilation.
    Though I waited for VP to be dead, and called a traitor for years. I shed tears when I heard about the family’s death. May his family rest in peace!
    God please help us now!

  15. uslanka says:

    You always make a long story to prove even a grade 5 student will understand as wrong and stupid. You once tried it to prove that Ranil was right while he was an utter failure. To make it short, if a person fails in a test; we should fail him rather than trying to change how we look at the answer to make him right.

    I havent tried to prove anything. why do you see a QED in a narrative?………..DBSJ

  16. Pramod says:

    What would have happened if Prabhakaran could secure nuclear war heads with his money in the future? His growth in leaps and bounds could have lead to such scenario …

    and what if Mahinda got a nuke from China?Why all this hypothetical questions?……DBSJ

  17. Sarathg says:

    What I cannot understand is what is great in a murderer like Prabhakaran to appreciate. He is like Hitler which requires to be remembered with hate. It would have been better if you publish the photos of the murders he commited.

    At the moment I’m trying to get pix of civilans killed in the final army offensive……..DBSJ

  18. Sothern Guiy says:

    DBSJ…..You have now started joining the Ealam project giving it an journalistic touch….. We knew your true colors for along time…

    (EDITED)

  19. david says:

    I have read in various places that Prabhakaran was from the Karaivar caste. yet his father’s name is velupillai. Now the “-pillai” name is usally reserved for hiher caste vella people. So how do you explain this?

  20. R Maran says:

    We all may not like VP for various reasons. However, we don’t deny the fact, he had made history for the last 30 yrs. Absolutely, and he is a powerful symbol of Tamils struggle in Sri Lanka.

    Don’t forget how he controlled one third of Sri Lanka for nearly three decades. No armed movement achieved this in the history. It is not glorifying him, Just a fact.

    He made his presence felt in Tamils all over the world and made the impossible possible.

  21. swathy says:

    Interesting article about VP written very well.
    While reading this, I was able to forget the nasty side of VP (only for a few minutes). I am glad he is gone for good.

    I knew very little about VP’s personal life. Reading this
    makes me want to know me. I guess I am going to spend the next 1/2 hour on google about VP’s childhood and early days.

    Thanks Jeyaraj. Your blog has become one of my favorites.

  22. Pramod says:

    “The demise of Prabhakaran along with family members and senior commanders marks the end of an eventful chapter in the long drawn out struggle of the Tamil people to achieve equal rights in the Island of Sri Lanka.”

    I have difficulty in fully digesting the concluding sentence above in the write up.
    Was the war till yesterday was for equal rights or for a secession of the country? I believe rights of all are equal constitutionally at least now. Am I wrong ?

    The struggle is for equality. It has many phases. The armed struggle or war is one phase. The causes leading to war are yet to be addressed. Constitutionally caste oppression is removed in India. Is that reaql on ground? …………..DBSJ

  23. Ananthy says:

    It’s a good piece of writing. I agree Pirabaharan is a powerful symbol of Tamil armed struggle. He may have done a few mistakes. However, no one can deny his excellnt leadership. When I was a teen ager, I liked to read all these novels by Kalki and Ahilan. Later I thought my kids will read and appreciate how LTTE fought with SL. However, it’s very sad that we have to mourn for the death of thousands of innocent civilians.

  24. Berny Wanniarachchci says:

    Little by litle, you want to glorify Prabhakaran – the brute of all times

    Do you know what GLORIFY means? If I want to “glorify” as you say it wont be like this and it wont be little by little either………..DBSJ

  25. siva says:

    Yes He was( or is) a power symbol of the Tamil armed struggle. He had his faults, and at times he should have used his brains instead of the gun to get over situations.
    Whatever said he was a hero for the Northern Tamils. I hope we can find many more like him
    (not the violent side but) . He was determined, focused, and had a goal in mind.
    All in all he is not dead, but has started an eternal flame – that cannot be vanquished.
    We have to carry on with his goals.with diplomacy. That’s the best we will be doing for him.

  26. Pramod says:

    The childhood stories of VP are fascinating.
    He was reading lot of books..
    He was primarily interested in War stories & armed struggles. But once he was reading “My Experiments with truth” also.

    But I wonder why he did not reform in life. The people who read a lot and work in public arena used to change while aging, becoming more and more wiser.

    He was losing wisdom ! Was it because of his rigidity ?
    He was virtually caught up in a south indian monkey trap.
    Did not want to loose the “Eelam” clenched by his fist which is trapped inside the coconut chained to the tree by the Srilankan Govt.
    I hope if wisdom prevailed on him, Prabhakaran would have been altogether a different personality to a gain lot for Tamils .

  27. garawi says:

    Yes I agree with the title : Prabhakaran: Powerful symbol of Tamil armed struggle. But I do not think it was the right way. He did not see the reality that India would at one stage would have stepped in if Ealam was going to be a reality and prevented it, even the current course of actions did not take place.

    Luck to played a major part in getting him to that position. Namely JR’s westward leaning policies angered Indira and she started supporting ALL tamil groups. If not for that this movement would never have gone this far. The SL forces would have finished them off much earlier.

    By the way, his family is supposed to have been sent to India when the end was in sight.

  28. Sam D says:

    So, the VVT culture of smuggling looks like played a big-big role in creating this notorous murder of our time probably the worst after Polpot of Cambodia, Idi Ameen of Uganda and Hitler of Nazi Germany.

  29. Norman says:

    I like to see more DBS than Stupuid Kurdish!

  30. Amantha says:

    TAMIL TERORISM IS DEFEATED ! THE TAMIL RACISM IS YET TO BE DEFEATED. THIS IS A GOOD EVIDENCE FOR THE ABOVE FACT

    Ah! must keep on discovering “enemies”. Hallmark of neo-fascism both Sinhala and Tamil …….DBSJ

  31. Sam D says:

    Thanks God, the hunter is hunted.

    If this butcher escaped, no Tamils, no Sinhalese would ever be able to live in peace.

  32. villa says:

    Non compromising idealists like VP always court death. One good example is Che Guerra. It is sad but their success is measured by the imprint they leave behind. Che still remains as the beacon for liberation struggle world over. Prabas legacy has limited ideology and if his memory can inspire sprit of freedom among Tamils including Tamil Nadu, then he has succeeded.

  33. Marlon says:

    DBS, I can’t help but notice a pattern in the tone of your weekly articles. They alternate every week between criticizing the LTTE harshly one week and favorably the next. Appears like you are trying to reach maximum market potential.

    Pray, tell me Marlon , what the “maximum market potential” of this blog is?………….DBSJ

  34. Suresh says:

    The way, this man died has brought the shame to the tamil people around the world.

    He has died exactly in the same was how he had killed thousands of innocent men, women and children.

    A lesson from the nature to all of you peolple….

    Anybody can give at least one name in the recent world history lived long after killing so many people for what so ever reason ?

    Suresh you hear only “defence” versions but do you “REALLY” know how this man died?…..DBSJ

  35. Srilankan says:

    Vp was a semi literate criminal, who became the head of the underworld, on account of his violent nature and quick temper.
    He was hired to carry out tasks, by some politicians of the day. He was allowed to remunerate himself by robbing banks. He liquidated any policeman who came after him.
    Those who used him and got what they wanted, were going to make sure he hanged. He had to eliminate them for his own protection.
    He was a victim of some powerful prople, and in turn many of us became victims of him.
    This state of affairs will run and run for years I fear.

    Who are the guys who paid VP to enforce a Presidential poll boycott?……….DBSJ

  36. Pramod says:

    The struggle is for equality. It has many phases. The armed struggle or war is one phase. The causes leading to war are yet to be addressed. Constitutionally caste oppression is removed in India. Is that reaql on ground? …………..DBSJ

    Dear DBS,

    The caste oppression is removed constitutionally in India , the rest is happening on the ground through education and awareness.. even though in slow pace.

    But in Srilanka it was utter discrimination – intentionally alienating a community by the politicians to appease the majority. The decision of youth to be armed when everything else failed was spontaneous and attracted world attention and sympathy.

    A change (may be forceful)in Govt position was imminent and was on burner . And it could have yield results if the students of Jaffna lead it and carried it till the end. But this struggle for equality was hijacked by few gun holding groups who wanted to consolidate their position and power within the community. They provoked the armed forces to get own people attacked by the armed forces to concrete their position as saviors of attacked and oppressed. I believe this is what happened in the early stages of the growth of so called self appointed liberation groups.

    Prabhakaran was always in a dilemma if at all equality was offered /guaranteed against arms surrender. This attitude was apparent in all truce negotiations and peace attempts. He was prejudiced with mistrust on politicians of Srilanka. If he was smart enough he could have negotiated and won inch by inch what Tamils actually needed.

    His struggle was for nothing but absolute power.

    How this can be termed as Tamil’s struggle for equality ?
    It is difficult to digest that the three decade prolonged war was for equality which was got crushed .

    If the war waged with propaganda and by military means was for equality, the Tamils would have realized it ages ago against any brutal chauvinistic force it might be.

    Dear Pramod , please take some ginger tea.Its good for digestion………..DBSJ

  37. Jey says:

    It’s Good but you missed some main event he did rubarry & medar at Kurubachity (Katuvan)
    Nirvali Bank with TELO bring Money to Ilavalai
    afrter Kutimani cought all TELO cought.

    Meny more.

    I am not chronicling VP to have “missed” this or that act?………..DBSJ

  38. Jey says:

    It’s Good but you missed some main event he did rubarry & medar at Kurubachity (Katuvan)
    Nirvali Bank with TELO bring Money to Ilavalai
    afrter Kutimani cought all TELO cought.

    Meny more.

    Have I written a chronology to “miss” this or that act?………..DBSJ

  39. ananda.dha says:

    Prabhakaran’s father was not born in Sri Lanka.

    He was born in Kerala and got citizenship after getting married to a Sri Lankan. He joined government service after that.

    His relatives are in Kerala.

    You are utterly wrong.It is a top “Sinhala” soldier who has Kerala roots……….DBSJ

  40. Pramod says:

    “The struggle is for equality. It has many phases. The armed struggle or war is one phase.

    ” The causes leading to war are yet to be addressed.”

    Why ?

    Am I wrong if I say that the people who initiated and leading the war were virtually blocking the causes to be addressed all these 30 years not allowing even a phase change?

    I believe it so.

    So I am relieved that that hurdle has been removed and now there is every possibility for reconciliation and uplift of the oppressed.

    As I wrote in another article the consequences have gone far beyond the causes of war….DBSJ

  41. Peter Hall says:

    All what we can assess is that VP had been sadist even during his young days. Your article states that he had been targeting birds inguana’s lizards etc. Also you have ommitted that VP injured one of his play mates by poking a stick to his friends eyes!
    With this sadist and killier instincs during young age it is not surprising that he pursue his thirst on blood during his terror campainge.
    He may have read and followed saints etc. but sure will not end up in heaven!
    Peter

    I write only what I know. Many kids target birds and lizards with catapults in childhood….DBSJ

  42. Jay Shanker says:

    Long live his ideals and cherished goals for freedom. My tributes all fallen and his family, little kid Balachandran.

    This article gives a refreshing thought after the ‘nightmarish’ Marathon in Tamils had for the past several months.

    DBS Thank you for writing.

  43. Pramod says:

    Whether GOSL is sincerely willing to do it or not, it is sure to happen. No one can block it.

    Those lives crushed long ago by these brutal forces (liberators & Army) are going to see real Sunrise after the LTTE Sun (VP) has set.

    Thanks Pramod. The darkest hour is before dawn.Nichayam Iravukku Pahalundu…….DBSJ

  44. Badhran says:

    You didn?t mention that Indira Gandhi and MGR armed the LTTE.

    DBSJ, please stop writing this type of article anymore. Your credential will be lost, both among Tamils and Sinhalese. Probably Indians would like to steer something once again to counter Chain….but that won?t work anymore.

    Enough is enough; hope the Tamil youth continue with their education and lead a normal life. Only education will bring back the lost dignity and pride.

    This is not a chronicle. I write what I think and feel. About losing “credentials”. Why? ……DBSJ

  45. confused confucius says:

    “Only a good cook can be a good guerilla”
    ——————————————————–
    I am scared of Gordon Ramsay if the above is true – Also Bin-Laden probably cooks well

    I think the death of Prabakaran is a great loss to the nation based on the statement “only a good cook can be a good guerilla”.

    I wished that he opened a cafe at Kotahena named “Vani Villas with iguana and tortoise meat” – I haven’t eaten either of the meats but wouldn’t mind to try them with Pirabakaran scraped coconut sambol.

    DBSJ, I read your Theepan’s biography but this one is not that interesting (not the style but the content)

    DBSJ RESPONDS:

    Dear Confucious you are confused. This is not a biography. This is also not a chronicle of military exploits as in the case of Theepan

    There is a potential “guerilla” in all good cooks. Sometimes I watch “iron Chef” on TV and wow! They go about it with guerilla precision.

    Kotahena “Vani Vilas” is a vegetarian cafe. No meat there. Only Pol sambol there but no maldive fish in it.

    Also it is illegal to sell Iguana and Tortoise flesh. Needless to say you cant serve it too. As a wild life enthusiast I Thank God for that.

    No “Udumbu – Aamai Iraichchi” for you.

    Let those poor creatures flourish again in the Wanni just as ravaged Tamils get on with life again in a post – LTTE scenario

  46. Jeshan says:

    Why is the criminal being glorified?
    He was responsible for more oppression/murder of
    Tamils than any Sinhalese person.

    This is not “glorifying” as you put it.Your definition of glorifying is different from mine.If and when I really do that you will know what “glorifying “ really is ……………….DBSJ

  47. Gamaya says:

    This Prabhakaran with Che Gueara photo is completely mis leading. Any one would think Prabhakaran was like Che. Not at all. Che was more democratic and never kidnapped some others children to fight under him.

    Our readers wont let a “Che” photo mislead them as you fear. Dont worry…….DBSJ

  48. Selva says:

    The VP’s story may be ended but the dream of VP is still alive. It doesn’t matter what he did. He is no more, so, i don’t want to make comments on his approaches. Set a goal and live it for it, is a gift of god. May VP and his family rest in peace.

  49. avi says:

    At the end SLDF prevailed. LTTE did not.. It’s highly over-rated leader died in a marshy land in his “amuday”
    (under wear). By looking at his head wound, it is evident the bullet has entered from the back of his head and did exit from the upper part of his forehead. he has no bullet entry points on his chest , stomach or front part s of his body. His cyanide capsule that he got his blind followers to wear and use in the event of defeat in the hands of so-called enemy, nowhere to be found along with the gas can that his bodyguards carry to burn his body after he takes his life ( according to DBSJ). Prabakaran is the symbol of MYSERABLY FAILED Tamil armed struggle which brought unimaginable misery and agony for entire Tamil population particularly for those in the north and the east. That is a fact .

    Ultimately he failed.But you dont “REALLY” know how he died. Only “defence” pix……..DBSJ

  50. Anonymous says:

    Dbs,

    Since Independance all ethnic groups enjoyed equal rights in SriLanka.
    Would you tell me what are the rights Tamils has not get and Sinhalese get

    Is there any point in answering someone who raises a question like this?…..DBSJ

  51. hey says:

    DBSJ or whatever ….keep gloryfying a butcher …..you should be dealt with the same way the SL Army dealt with the butcher

    DBSJ RESPONDS:

    Hey Hey!

    Hi! Hi!

    This is not “glorifying” as you put it.Your definition of glorifying is different from mine.If and when I really do that you will know what “glorifying “ really is ….

    But then you must keep on discovering “enemies”. Hallmark of neo-fascism both Sinhala and Tamil

    Tell me how did the Army “REALLY” deal with the “butcher”?

    How are you so confident that the “ARMY” deals with journalists this way? Are you implying the ARMY butchered Lasantha Wickrematunge?

    Speaking of butchery would you describe the slaughter of 20,000 civilians as butchery?

  52. Kumara Ekanayke says:

    prabakaren is leader who broke all the rules of a leader,if he is going to be a symbol, that is the end of tamil culture, and religen.

    Not to worry the symbol is no more. So is the armed struggle he symbolised…….DBSJ

  53. Bandara the Mayu says:

    Can you please write an article summarizing the reasons for the loosing the war? (ie, Praba’s miscalculations)

    Also, do you have any concrete evidence for Praba’s death?

    DBSJ RESPONDS:

    When Praba was alive and the LTTE active I have written that the war was unwinnable and the goal unrealistic. I urged VP and LTTE to transform themselves in the long term interests of the Tamil people and engage in genuine negotiations for a political settlement within a united but not necessarily unitary Sri Lanka.

    I wrote so openly under my name.

    Now after his demise and LTTE decline I see no reason for me to write critiques with an “I told you so” flavour.

    I really want to get on with life and not dwell too much on the Praba phenomenon.Hopefully I want to write on other subjects a lot.

    This does not mean I wont write about VP or LTTE but I am really not keen right now.

  54. Gamaya says:

    DBS , Hopefully you will reveal about others too. One story I remember was Ealam Police Cheif Nadesan and His Sinhala Wife Vineetha Dahanayake Gunasekara from Kamburupitya. Her Sinhala family dis owned her. One of the best Sinhala singers Late Visharada Gunadasa Kapuge sang a nice song written By Rathna Shri Wijesinghe. It says some thing like -
    Sinhala Sindu Kiyana
    Nalale Thilaka thiyana Kirilli
    Thudin Hadawat Aragene
    Ginigat Thal Arambata
    Avado Igilli

    Nadesan has some sentiments towards Trotskysts I gather.
    Vineetha tragically died with Nadesan. RIP Nadesan and Vineetha.

    DBSJ RESPONDS:
    Thank you for this.

    I thought her name was Vijitha and from Morawaka.

    Can you please write to me at dbsjeyaraj@yahoo.com with more details about her if you can?

    Also what’s the exact meaning of these Sinhala verses?

  55. Jayagowri Ganeshan says:

    True he was powerful, but that power had no purpose. All he demonstrated was that the ability and readiness to be brutal to Tamils was not exclusive to the chauvinist Sinhala regimes. He demonstrated that us Tamils could match that brutality, too! The effect of his power, and the foolishness or helplessness with which it was supported by the community has given us nothing but misery. All evidence points to nothing but brutality dished out to the people whom he claimed to protect, hiding behind the sarees of old women and children in nappies to protect himself — right until the last minute, clinging onto his own dear life. All indications are that the powerful leader who recommended suicide to his followers wanted to save his own life. Some power! Some struggle! Two days ago the centre page of the Guardian in the UK (and other media) carried an aerial photograph of Mullivaikkal (taken when the UN Secretary General visited the region, I think)… I saw it during a five hour train journey and cried till I got to the other end. What a loss. That is the consequence of having absolute power without purpose.

    I agree. This tragedy afflicting the Tamils was avoidable. My sorrow is immense as I kept on warning of it but had no public support from Tamils who are lamenting now…….DBSJ

  56. ranuka says:

    I agree that VP was a powerful symbol, but he was also an epic failure.
    Thanks to him the tamils were pushed a few decades back. The tamils IMO would have been better off without him.
    I agree that the tamils have legitimate grievances, but after many have died the tamils are still in the same place. At least some of those lives could have been saved if VP was not around.

    I agree. But a powerful symbol can also be an epic failure.They aren’t contradictory…..DBSJ

  57. brown flore says:

    Velupillai is from point pedro, dbj a man from should know this and Praba was not a hero as you presented him to be

  58. brown flore says:

    correction dbj from karaveddy should know this

    Know what?and what makes you think I was born in Karaveddy?….DBSJ

  59. Navin says:


    In the process he became a powerful, vibrant symbol of the Tamil armed struggle.

    I didn’t read beyond this sentence.

    VP certainly is a powerful symbol but he is most certainly not a vibrant symbol. He defied all humanity to achieve his goals. It makes me sick to even think of how people can glorify such a man– nothing can justify what LTTE did for those poor sinhalese in the border areas again, and again, over 2 decades or those commutters in the busses and trains whose only crime was to be
    sinhalese. Those were not spontaneous acts of revenge but premeditated pre-planned attacks symbolic of cannibalism and their uneducated, unciviliased nature, to say the least. I don’t understand how DBSJ can use such language to describe him… Leave aside
    all havoc that LTTE caused in colombo and all political assasinations but butchering civilians in this
    way is just disgusting.

    This article was also published in DM. That is the other
    problem. How can sri lankan media publish such a
    write up that glorifies a killer that has killed so many Sri Lankans in most abominabal ways? And they still
    think we ought to give them all freedom to write as they see fit! I have a hard time imagine a reporter on CNN saying Bin Laden was a vibrant symbol of struggle of Muslims against American aggresion even when his crimes are nothing compared to that of VP.

    DBSJ RESPONDS:

    For someone who did not read beyond a certain sentence you really write a lot. How did you write this without reading the whole piece? are you simply criticising something you really have no idea about?

    This is not “glorifying” as you put it.Your definition of glorifying is different from mine.If and when I really do that you will know what “glorifying “ really is ….

    But then you must keep on discovering “enemies”. Hallmark of neo-fascism both Sinhala and Tamil.

    Only the foolish and ignorant will try to deny the obvious fact that VP was a powerful, vibrant symbol of Tamil armed struggle and that he determined the course of Sri Lankan politics for more than two decades

    I want to tell you strongly that intolerant yokels like you are the driving force of Sinhala chauvinism.

    Luckily for some of us the people running newspapers are far more liberal and tolerant than vocal warriors like you .

    Go get a life!

  60. Tamil says:

    Tamils are more determined than ever to achieve their ultimate goal of Tamil Ealam, but we are missing the Prabahran kind of great leadership.

    The hour of the need is to save these people trapped in these holocaust camps and stop the colonization of Tamil land.

    Tamils please look at the larger picture don’t fall for some pity incentives and the comfortable life for you and your family provided by the Rajabaksa regime.

    we need leaders with Prbaharan’s character to negotiate with sinhala nazi regime, now or never please don’t leave this to the next generation.

    Western countries and media is giving some attention now, please use this wisely.

    Well done DBS, I followed a link from the economist magazine to your forum. When you are going to write about the slaughter of the Tamils in the hands of the sinhala invading forces.

    We need to bring this Rajabksa regime to the war crimes tribunal for the genocide.

    DBSJ RESPONDS:

    Getting praise from the likes of you gives me goose pimples.

    Had Prabhakaran sincerely negotiated with Colombo governments the Tamils would have been certainly better off than they are now.

    Prabhakaran is mainly responsible for the tragic plight of the Tamil people.

    The Tamil people can recover only when people like you recognize the damage done by VP.

    The best thing you can do is to simply keep “shut up” letting the poor, affected Tamils pick up the pieces and get on with life as best as they could

    By the way it was the LTTE which brought Mahinda to power

  61. georgethebushpig says:

    A very interesting biography that brings to life the “human side” of a person considered a beast by many. All, if not most people, carry with them internal contradictions. But VP seems to be a unique case. A man not himself brutalised, but a promoter of brutality by exposure to stories of past horrors Tamil people had to endure. These must have been some very powerful stories he was exposed to, or he was especially sensitive to stories of injustice.

    But then again when you look at that picture with a poster of Che Guevara in the background you also begin to see what kind of a poseur he really was. It is clear from what many have written (including you DBS) that the LTTE were literarily devoid of “progressive ideology”. Sitting in front of a Che poster exposes the man’s overblown estimation of himself as being comparable to a revolutionary of that calibre.

    I have no doubt that the 58 riots were horrible but VP was only 4 then. I wasn?t even around then but I don?t believe VVT was affected by the riots (were they?). The brutalised turning into brutes is a story well told by Fanon. But does VP fall into this category really? Or was he just the sick fat kid in the neighbourhood who liked to dismember little animals that then grew up into a full blown megalomaniac? One things for sure though, the man must have had some charisma to have been able to convince thousands to put themselves on line for a dream that only he knew where the borders lay.

    Thank you for this.Only you’ve understood significance of “Che” picture……..DBSJ

  62. georgethebushpig says:

    A very interesting biography that brings to life the “human side” of a person considered a beast by many. All, if not most people, carry with them internal contradictions. But VP seems to be a unique case. A man not himself brutalised, but a promoter of brutality by exposure to stories of past horrors Tamil people had to endure. These must have been some very powerful stories he was exposed to, or he was especially sensitive to stories of injustice.

    But then again when you look at that picture with a poster of Che Guevara in the background you also begin to see what kind of a poseur he really was. It is clear from what many have written (including you DBS) that the LTTE were literarily devoid of “progressive ideology”. Sitting in front of a Che poster exposes the man’s overblown estimation of himself as being comparable to a revolutionary of that calibre.

    I have no doubt that the 58 riots were horrible but VP was only 4 then. I wasn’t even around then but I don’t believe VVT was affected by the riots (were they?). The brutalised turning into brutes is a story well told by Fanon. But does VP fall into this category really? Or was he just the sick fat kid in the neighbourhood who liked to dismember little animals that then grew up into a full blown megalomaniac? One things for sure though, the man must have had some charisma to have been able to convince thousands to put themselves on line for a dream that only he knew where the borders lay.

    DBSJ RESPONDS:

    I was also four years old in 1958.

    We were living in Hendala then and I was at the Santa Maria montessorie in Wattala. My father dropped me at the gate and drove off. When I went in I found myself as the only Tamil kid. I remember vividly how Ms. Jayalath the principal took me and kept me in the office.

    All I felt then was that something terrible was happening to the Tamils and that I was a Tamil.

    Fortunately , Wattala and Hendala were pre-dominantly Catholic then. When a tiny Mob began gathering the Catholic clergy and respected elders of the laity put a stop to that

    We were safe as a family

    But we heard a lot of stories about atrocities. I think I’ve heard all the horrible tales heard by VP. The Panadura priest was known to our family and it was his brother Ramanatha Sarma who wrote the horoscopes for me and my siblings

    When we went to Jaffna for August holidays all our relatives mobbed us asking about what we experienced

    I recollect all my cousins regailing me with horror stories

    Oh yes! the 1958 violence can be etched in the memory of a 4 year old

  63. John says:

    DBS, great narrative. I hope you will write a book about all aspects of Tamil struggle, as I like your fair analysis. I would like my children to read it one day. Also I hope many Tamils & Sinhalese will be fair in their outlook.

    Few questions that I have about Praba.

    (1) Is part of his family from Kerala? Do you have any facts regarding this?

    (2) You used his fathers name “Thiruvengadam” in addressing Praba. Did VP ever use it or is that your addition based on Jaffna customs?

    (3) Many of Praba’s violent approach to solving problems are similar to the Rajapakse brothers. Do you agree with that statement? In my opinion, I see the present government just as brutal as the LTTE, though it’s done under the cover of the SLA, SLAF & SLN.

    (4) Do you think VP was axed rather than shot? Some photos of him taken after he was killed looks more like he was axed, rather than a clean bullet wound.

    Keep up your good work.

  64. kv says:

    That idiot was a pawn in the hands of the Tamil Diaspora who left Sri Lanka before 1983, [not as refugees but as doctors and engineers, university lecturers etc ,thanks to the free education system of Sri Lanka] and believed even at the jaws of death that they would come to his rescue with the aid of western govts who were in their pay roll. That is the extent of his intelligence.
    I feel sorry for the fool in that respect and feel contempt for theTamil diaspora who in the comforts of their homes created such suffering to the nation and its people and up todate haven’t moved a scent from their fat coifurs to help the IDP tamil brothers for whome they cry crocodile tears in front of those foreign Govts and Media .
    KV

  65. Mohanasundaram says:

    I am really suprised about this article. This is not the normal DBS we know. You are trying to whitewash VP. may be under duress. VP was never a fan of V, Navaratnam or his party. He was always with Amirthalingham till the mid 80′s. This article should rak as one of your worst. Please be honest and write as you normally do

    An ignorant fool who does not even know that he is an ignorant fool is someone to be shunned. Happily some other commentators on this site have understood what this piece is all about.

    The only “duress” I undergo is when I am compelled to read and respond to idiots like you.

    It appears that it requires nothing to “surprise” you

    By the way how do you differentiate between a “nornal’ DBS and an “abnormal” DBS?

  66. raj says:

    DBSJ,

    I am from TN, India. I don’t trust GOI w.r.t. anything on Eelam Tamils. The reason is all international relations are basically amoral. But we in TN don’t see Tamils in Eelam as different from us. So most of the time, it will lead us to confront GOI & we don’t mind too, as it is for right cause.

    I am an ardent supporter of any type of struggle in Sri Lanka, because the arms one take is determined by his foes. I don’t mean Sinhalese as foes, they are our extended brothers. But yes the governments are the foe for Tamils in Eelam, including GOI, etc.

    Any struggle against discrimination based on ethnic, religion, caste, creed, etc on any parts of the world, can be carried out by only those oppressed, who were strong enough. Plainly, survival of the fittest.

    Fools are those Tamils who always saw that the glass is half empty. You can find them in every part of the world, including TN. What those pundits don’t realise is that if not Tigers, there is not going to be equality for some considerable future, until something extra ordinary happens. Because of them, the only option that will be left out is to pray :)

    I hate all your writings. But still I read them to have an opposite view.

    Just leave the SL Tamils alone. Start by not reading me.Please!Please!……DBSJ

  67. temenggong says:

    Praba and the LTTE reminds us of Sparta, and Spartacus. He has joined the ranks of Che Guevera and Kattabomman. This one group, the LTTE has produced so many heroes in such a short time, most of whom will never be known.

    The LTTE made a few mistakes, but it was the International Community that did not rise up to the occasion and recognise Eelam which was already a de facto state for 20 years. The world failed the Eelam Tamils, not the LTTE. It was a failure of mankind.

    Nevertheless, there are 300,000 war hardened children in the Vanni who are waiting to become teenagers, then fighters.

    DBSJ RESPONDS:

    The LTTE did not make FEW MISTAKES. They made MANY BLUNDERS.

    Chief among them was the failure to understand the International situation.

    Sparta, Spartacus, Kattabomman etc did not “CONSCRIPT” younsters and then sacrifice them without adequate training on the frontline

    Sparta, Spartacus, Kattabhomman etc did not fire and kill their own people for whom they were supposedly fighting for when they wanted to simply safeguard their lives by going to a safer place.

    Please dont talk of poor battle – hardened Wanni teen- agers from diasporic comfort and safety. Let them lead normal lives again. If you want please go with your children and fight.

    The armed struggle is over. No more conflict for Tamils

    Let our people live.

    May the Tamils have a spiritual, ethical, cultural, social, economic and political renaissance but never ever a militaristic revival

    Never again a massacre of innocents.

    No! never, never, never again!

  68. Ranjit says:

    Dear D.B.S,
    You have edited Pirabaharan’s life and times. You quoted that ?He will never compromise and will die fighting to the last? . And you mentioned “How True!”.
    Is it true D.B.S?
    Do you know another thing? His favourite sweet is Gulopjam(Indian sweet)

    That is what Lalith said and yes IT IS TRUE. Tell me have you eaten sweets with VP ?. …….DBSJ

  69. Stephen Jones says:

    It won 18 of 19 Tamil seats in the North-East

    How do you distinguish between ‘Tamil’ and ‘non-Tamil’ seats. I was under the impression that the TULF had a clean sweep of 14/14 in Northern Province but didn’t do so well in Eastern Province. Do you have the exact figures for Eastern Province?

    DBSJ RESPONDS:

    Why dont you guys read up instead of asking me?

    In 1977 there was no PR system.Only electoral or First past the post winner system.

    The TULF won all 14 seats in the north.

    In the east it won the Tamil majority single – member constituencies of Paddiruppu and Trincomalee. It won the “Tamil ” seat for double member constituencies of Batticaloa and Pottuvil.

    The only Tamil majority electorate lost was Kalkudah won by Devanayagam of the UNP

    Some Muslims contested on the TULF ticket in the Muslim majority electorates of Kalmunai, Sammanthurai and Mutur. All lost.

    Amparai and Seruwila were Sinhala majority electorates

  70. Telemachus says:

    Hi DBS,

    I see the extra effort you people put in in order to elevate this murderous fascist and coward without any funamental feelings of humanism, to the status of ‘Che’ Guevara. Everyone of us saw and heard how he sacrificed the lifes of 1000s of Tamil civilians even during his final days to the cannons of senseless Sri Lankan army.

    The person who singlehandedly hijacked and decimated the Tamil struggle in the 80s by burning TELO and EPRLF cadres alive in the streets of Jaffna is portrayed as someone who relentlessly spearheaded the Tamil struggle. What an irony!!! You guys are worse than Devils advocate.

    You havent understood anything and not understood that you havent understood…..DBSJ

  71. Anbu says:

    Mr.DBSJ

    Its a great piece of writing. So is every piece you write. You possess the ability to critically write of different aspects of this conflict with clarity for the public. It is a pity that many who read this start criticising you from ethnic lenses rather than appreciating the analytics and critque involved.

    Please write a piece of the Innocent civilians kiiled in recent weeks and the number of solidiers kiilled in this war. This wretched country will only have peace when majority start realising what we have lost for our stupidity as well as what we have all become because of this. I wish you all the success in your endeavours.

    Please do write a piece on how Mahinda and his family succesfully worked towards destroying the LTTE as well.

    Thank you

    Anbu

    Mikka nandri Anbu but I am getting tired of all this. But let’s see………DBSJ

  72. Telemachus says:

    good work! keep it up!

  73. rawana says:

    You are glorifying a murderer who killed thousands innocent people. What purpose would this serve? Encourage others to be such murderers too?

    This is not “glorifying” as you put it.Your definition of glorifying is different from mine.If and when I really do that you will know what “glorifying “ really is ……………….DBSJ

  74. chinthaka kulatunga says:

    Dear DBS,

    Thanks for the excellent article. When facts are reported fools think it is glorifying. Please ignore them.

    Do you know Sri Lanka never had Prabhakaran’s finger prints. When the Central Bank bomb case was being investigated, CI Nilabdeen, was on a trail with an arrested tiger cadre. This cadre revealed that Prabhakaran had given him a plaque as a token when he (along with others) went to have the “last supper” with Prabha before embarking on the suicide mission to destroy the Central Bank. This plaque was recovered from Trincomalee from the house of this tigre cadre. Finger prints (FP) were taken. However SL did not have the FP of Prabha to make a match. Luckily India had a set and we got it from India. (remember he was arrested there and remanded for a while). Then there was a pefect match of the prints. That is how he was convicted.
    It is to be noted that there was a suicide attck on CI Nilabdeen at Mt. Lavinia, which he survived and lived to testify in court, thus ensuring the conviction of Prabha in the case.

    Cheers

    DBSJ RESPONDS:

    Thank You for this. VP was fingerprinted in India twice. Once after the Pondy bazaar shoot -out in 1982 and once when LTTE arms and communication equipment were seized in 1986.

    If the Govt was open about some things the “genuine” confusion can be reduced

  75. peace says:

    DBS;
    A job well done .A journalist’s responsibility is to document events and avoid personal emotions. Much like a historian.Let the readers draw their own conclusion. I wish I could use my real name .May be I am a coward.

    Thank You. Soon you will be writing under your own name.Peace be with you…….DBSJ

  76. Lionel says:

    It is a nice article , with facts and one could read easily.
    I wonder adjective ‘photogenic’ is intentionally used, I feel photographic memory is more approppriate.

    You are right Lionel.It should be photographic. My mistake.Sorry…….DBSJ

  77. Ravishankar says:

    Dear DBSJ

    Another excellent piece of writing. I have been reading your columns with great interest as it gives balanced views and mostly very factual and the speculations have proven right after few weeks/months.
    I thought you would come up with more elaborative series on the rise and fall of VP.
    One question though people are suspecting KP of betraying VP, what are your thoughts?

    Thanks

    KP “betraying”VP is utter nonsense spread by vested interests in the diaspora……DBSJ

  78. RS Wickramasinghe says:

    A man who claimed to be a freedom-fighter, acted as king, but ended up as a vicious mafiosi don.

    Is a man willing to hold 360,000 innocents hostage, kill them for escaping and to the last willing to allow their annihilation from rocket,shell mortar fire a hero to any Tamil Northern, Eastern, global? Let no Tamil take as a mere background fact that at the end he was willing to destroy the people he fought simply for to prolong the life of his organisation.

    In today’s world, Prabhakaran should be remembered as a powerful symbol of what an ancient barbarian would look like in the modern world.

    This symbol should remain uppermost despite accounts to humanise him such as yours DBSJ.

    The tamils are disgraced by constructions of him as warrior drawn from the noble product of an ancient martial culture. Every murderer and psychopath can reach back to a glorious imagined past to construct himsef as a hero. Even Saddam Hussein crafted himself as a modern day Arab Saladdhin fighting Jewish and American oppression.

    It is better to humanise than deify or demonise. Your outburst dismays me……DBSJ

  79. RS Wickramasinghe says:

    In death, despite his best attempts, the Arabs came to reject him as a symbol for any of struggles

  80. Sena says:

    I repeat, you have extraordinary skill and ability in what you do best. In death, rarely one would write ill of the person and I guess that aspect is not in this article.

  81. RS Wickramasinghe says:

    A man who claimed to be a freedom-fighter, acted as king, but ended up as a vicious mafiosi don.

    Is a man willing to hold 360,000 innocents hostage, kill them for escaping and to the last willing to allow their annihilation from rocket,shell mortar fire a hero to any Tamil Northern, Eastern, global? Let no Tamil take as a mere background fact that at the end he was willing to destroy the people he fought for simply for to prolong the life of his organisation.

    In today’s world, Prabhakaran should be remembered as a powerful symbol of what an ancient barbarian would look like in the modern world.

    This symbol should remain uppermost despite accounts to humanise him such as yours DBSJ.

    The tamils are disgraced by constructions of him as warrior drawn from the noble product of an ancient martial culture. Every murderer and psychopath can reach back to a glorious imagined past to construct himsef as a hero. Even Saddam Hussein crafted himself as a modern day Arab Saladdhin fighting Jewish and American oppression and in death, despite his best attempts the Arabs people, even the sunni fanatics fighting the Americans after, ignored deification, glorification or martyrdom. .

    This article is both understood and misunderstood. sad to see your outburst but…….DBSJ

  82. shankar says:

    dbs

    you have made me very worried. i used to also prowl around with a catapult.

    DBSJ RESPONDS:

    I’ve also done that Shankar when I was a kid. Most of my friends did so too.

    I remember an old friend Noel when we were living in Aloe Avenue , Kollupitiya who specialised in targetting “katussas” (Onaan). His nickname was “Katta”. He was a Burgher and a Royalist

    I am surprised by some people trying to psycho – analyse VP with all sorts of psychotic names because he used the catapult to target birds and lizards.

    This reminds me of an article I read about George Bush jnr. It said Dubya as a teen – ager had tied frogs to a cracker and exploded it shattering the frog to pieces.

    This was deemed as a cruel streak in Bush and a harbinger of Iraqi war.

    I thought it was cruel too and “psycho” behaviour

    But when I was talking to a “white Anglo – Saxon Protestant” canadian who grew up in the Hamilton area he confessed sheepishly that he had exploded frogs too as a teen – ager.

    “It was the done thing David. All of us did it then” he said

    Not to worry Shankar, if you and I get a chance to be children again let’s catapult to our heart’s delight. VP or no VP.

  83. jude de Silva says:

    This killer is history now so don’t waste your bloody time writing about him.

    I like History Jude and my time is not “bloody”…….. DBSJ

  84. Rifat Halim says:

    Dear Jeyaraj,

    Your article on Prabhakarn was interesting.

    You should consider writing an article on former Federal Party parliamentarian V Navaratnam, who died in Canada in December 07. Many Tamil nationalists see him as the ‘voice crying out in the wilderness’. He spoke of a separate state long before the 1972 constitution.

    He has produced a well-written book called ‘The Fall and Rise of the Tamil Nation’. The book was an assault on the Federal Party, particularly M Tiruchelvam.

    You missed the irony of Prabha’s end. Navaratnam, his early guru, was an old Anandian. The man who finished him off – Sarath Fonseka is also an old Anandian.

    So, Ananda has not just produced cricketers.

    cheers,

  85. Dhananjaya says:

    Unfortunately the article is not a balanced description highlighting only the positive aspects of VP.

    LTTE became the only organization to keep the armed struggle alive was because the hero in this article massacred and eliminated the leaders of all other Tamil organizations.

    Prabakaran also killed highly respected Tamil leaders such as Neelan Tiruchelwam, Amirtalingam, Kadiragarmar etc merely because they had alternative views.

    LTTE is also well known to have abducted young children for their armed struggle against the will of the parents.

    Most importantly after waging an armed struggle for thirty years what has the LTTE achieved. In comparison I highly respect leaders such as Tondaman (Sr) who without shedding a single drop of blood obtained citizenship to 400000 Tamils in Sri Lanka during JRs time purely on the strength of his votes.

    It is high time for the Tamil population to make a self assessment whether gloryfying such murderers in the name of Tamil liberation will achieve their objective.

    DBSJ RESPONDS:

    This is not “glorifying” as you put it.Your definition of glorifying is different from mine.If and when I really do that you will know what “glorifying “ really is.

    By the way I should remind people like you that I have been constantly and consistently criticising and condemning the LTTE and VP all these years. This I did under my own name despite violence from the LTTE.

    People like you are now very brave and vocal in lashing out at VP. Where were you all these days buddy? Even now no guts to use own name . Ah?

    “Vaaichol Veerargal” (Vocal warriors) as Bharathi said.

    I dont think people like you will ever understand what this article is all about. No point in even trying to make you understand

  86. Rohana says:

    Dear DBS,
    “Lord Krishna then tenders advice to him that each person is destined to fulfill his or her duty. It was the warrior?s duty to kill his adversary regardless of kinship. Killing the ?body? of the enemy was part of heroic valour. The essence of Lord Krishna?s lecture is the ?Bhagavat Gita?.

    The problem, dear DBS is it is not a secret text. The “adversary” is also is likely to read the text. I believe both VP and MR have read the text and followed it . I leave it to you and the readers to decide who followed it more diligently. Thanks.

    DBSJ RESPONDS:

    There is no “problem” here Rohana! The “Gita” is openly available and universally applicable.

    Even a Christian like myself finds resonance with the Karma Yogi and Swadharma concepts.

    More than MR it is Gota and Sarath who seemed to have imbibed the Gita principles adhered to by VP. I dont know whether they read the “Gita” or simply saw the film “Karnan”

    But then what about the “Buddha dhamma”?

    May be Mahinda like “Dharmashoka” after the Kalinga war will have a change of heart?

  87. Vidura says:

    ///Netaji?s famous pronouncement was ?I shall fight for the freedom of my land until I shed my last drop of blood?. Prabhakaran subscribed to these sentiments whole-heartedly.////

    I am sorry, VP SURRENDERED ..and PLEADED for his life ..too scared to die, he betrayed his own Principals …

    ..he was just a LOSER!

    YES , VP was a loser but NO VP did NOT surrender or plead for his life……..DBSJ

  88. Tamil Victim says:

    Comment# 6
    Over 100000 innocent Tamils died in the hand of SL Army while they were begging to spare their lives. Being a Tamil I have experienced through my life.

  89. Tharaka says:

    He was a symbol for some.

    Hitler too.

    A symbol is a symbol is a symbol. Even for enemies…….DBSJ

  90. Vidura says:

    //// “puli” in Tamil denotes the tiger but the tiger on the Chola flag was the “Vengai” or cheetah. It is a far cry from the Bengal tiger on the LTTE flag now. In any case there are no tigers in Sri Lanka. We have only the leopard here. But then we have no lions but our national flag has one. In a sense the rifle-crossed tiger flag was a direct response to the sword-bearing lion. ////

    …in the final Battle of the LIONS vs TIGERS …the Tigers were Annihilated!

    Now we have to prosecute the “beasts” responsible for violating rights of humans …… DBSJ

  91. Ranjan says:

    DBS,
    Interesting article about VP, what is amusing is the reaction my fellow Singhalese readers who seems to think that you are trying to glorify him. I don’t see any glorification here but it is a factual piece of writing. However, I hope one day, either you or someone else will try to write an analysis of his actions. We need to understand what made him tick, and how did he manage to hijack the whole Tamil political struggle in Sri Lanka and turn it into a fascist exercise in consolidating power. If we do not understand an dlearn from history, we are doomed to repeat it.

    I may be splitting hairs here, but I think that LTTE was not about a struggle for equality in Sri Lanka. It was a struggle to separate from Sri Lanka (or from Singhalese). I think there is a distinct difference in the two. For example, the Black people’s struggle in US was (and is) a struggle for equality. It never took the form of carving out a geographical area for them to preserve their identity. Given where they were and where they are now, one could say that the struggle has been largely successful. On the other hand, Tamil struggle in Sri Lanka was first about losing an advantageous position, which then was converted into a struggle to create a separate country. Now with demise of VP and the LTTE, it has the potential to get converted into a struggle for equality. The current conditions in Sri Lanka, open economy, growth of the privet sector, and loosening of the government control of the education system, and changing of the attitudes of the majority Singhalese towards the minorities will make achievement of equality for all citizens in Sri Lanka more likely.

    DBSJ RESPONDS:

    Thanks Ranjan but not only “Sinhala” but “Tamils” also havent understood what this piece is all about.

    As you said no splitting hairs but when Sinhala was made “Sole” official language in 1956 it was an “unequal” situation.

    Thereafter it was a struggle for “equality” within Sri Lanka. Even federalism was that though many see it as division

    The struggle got distorted and hi-jacked as time progressed.

    Separation and armed struggle diverted it but arguably it was for “equality” in the Island of Sri Lanka

    Today the consequences have gone beyond the original causes.

    But it was always for equality.

    As you say there is a chance now for this equality struggle to get on the tracks again.

    But I cant and dont want it to be a Tamil – oriented “ethnic” struggle.

    Multi – ethnic, like – minded persons have to keep on struggling with the unfinished task of nation building.

    The goal and vision should be for a United, Pluralist,Egalitarian “NEW” Sri Lanka

  92. Varun Sriskanda says:

    Your articles always make for an intresting read! I always learn something new!

    Thank you Varun, you are a chip of the old block…….DBSJ

  93. Aathavan says:

    End of Phase 3.

    Phase 1: Symbolized by Sir Ramanathan et al: Independance and beginning of ‘Tamil Awareness’

    Phase 2: Symbolized by S.J.V. Chelvanayagam: A futile parliamentary democratic exercise over 30 years

    Phase 3: Symbolized by V. Pirabhakaran: Armed struggle

    Phase 4: Symbol yet to be found: Modality of struggle yet to be defined…..or as DBSJ once mused ‘Whither Sri Lankan Tamils’

  94. Badhran says:

    DBSJ, Refer to your comment on 44

    Portraying VP as a powerful symbol of an arm struggle and contradicting the essence of Bhagavath Geetha?

    It is true that VP led a brilliant and brutal path, but he demolished every trust and credential by way of mere
    surrender and disgraceful death.

  95. aj says:

    Hi! Jeyaraj,

    (EDITED)

    -Aj

  96. Thayalan says:

    Dear DBJ

    You know, my thalaivar is still alive. God can not leave us an orphanage (Tamils)in the world.
    0

  97. Dharinie says:

    Thanks again for this wonderful piece of VP’s life from childhood to death.

    Thanks Dharinie…………DBSJ

  98. Jimmy says:

    Prabaharan is certainly a hero for the Tamils in Srilanka, because he fought against state terrorism and Sinhala Chuvanism,.
    The latest genocide figure shows 20,000 Tamil civilians butchered in the last few days by SLA.
    That is why he brought the war to an end by fighting till the end.
    He has to fight against all odds, he was outnumbered and outgunned by the SLA.
    The IC,India,Pakistan and China was behind the SLA. providing arms and amunition. Also traning for the SLA and money for the GOSL to conduct the war.
    Certainly he made some political and tactical mistakes in the war without witness.
    Now only the west is realising that they had made a big blunder, trusting the clever PR campaign caried out by the GOSL, in condemning the LTTE as a terrorist organisation.
    The U.N. failed the Tamils in Srilanka miserably and taking sides, the rest is history.

  99. Kingsley says:

    Like MR said (in effect) that who sing along are patriots and those who even objectively criticize are not only unpatriotic, but also sympathizers of LTTE, if not hard-core LTTEers. There no more majority or minority. This appears to be the latest brand of democracy in SL, according to the sentiments expressed by many fundamentalist readers. I think DBSJ would be better off without responding to them, no matter how tempting.

    As to the sufferrings of innocent people I have a tale to tell. when I was in the Eastern Province at the time the LTTE breached the accord with India and went in the offensive, members of a group whose leader is enjoying a Ministerial post in the government went around recruiting children by force with the assistance of the IPKF. The armed group walked into houses and dragged out children while the parents were howling and appealing for mercy. One day they walked into my house and dragged my son out while my wife and daughter were wailing. For my luck, I noticed that there was an IPKF major sitting in the truck parked down the road whom I previously met accidentally on the road once and helped him translating a conversation between a Citizen Committee member and IPKF. I appealed to him and my son was eventually released.

    Later I learnt that the boys dragged out on this day, around 60 in number, their heads shaved, were kept and given military training in a make-shift camp in a remote village in paduvankarai for a week against their will, were shot and hacked and killed in cold blood by the LTTE!

    My son who was saved on that day by pure miracle is a specialist doctor to-day! How many doctors, engineers and other professionals in the making were killed that day and who is responsible for it?

    Is the Minister who is enjoying good things in life today, or VP who has gone to meet his maker, or the Government that was intransigent was responsible for this masacre and many other similar carnages? I still have nightmares when I remember this episode!

    DBSJ RESPONDS:

    Thank you for sharing this Kingsley and Thank God your son is what he is today.

    But sad for all other parents of all ethnicities who lost their children in this meaningless strife.

    I have not experienced it personally but I feel the sorrow of parents losing children of a young age must be greater than children losing parents of an old age.

    As for responding to comments I have tried to give an opportunity to people to engage in amiable conversation but it is being abused and misused.

    I must indeed review the whole thing and perhaps do a course correction

  100. Sri says:

    Whatever said , VP will go down in the history as a Tamil ruler of northeast Sri lanka for a period. His lack of diplomacy coupled with political immaturity and arrogance caused his down fall and with him took the life of thousands of Tamils. Now his dream of Ealam has to go to the back burner , unless & until the western powers come forward to help the Tamils like in East Timor or Kosovo. I am sure India will not help since it has no charismatic leaders like Indira or Rajiv.
    Otherwise the Tamils had to wait for the defragmentation of India like what happened in the Balkans so the Tamil Nadu is independant. Any how history will repeat itself. Sinhalas got to realise that there are 60 million people who are boiling with anger of what happened to their brethren, this is going to go down in the history books and there is no rewriting of history like the sinhala historians to their favour. So Sinhalas be aware.

    DBSJ RESPONDS:

    Enough Sri of this empty rhetoric.60 million Tamils boiling indeed. The Tamil Nadu bogey is a bogus.Understand that please

    Our future is inextricably inter-twined with that of the Sinhala people. We have to heal wounds, reconcile and live together.The sooner we realise it the better.

  101. nandasena says:

    Someone said that Pirapkaran is semi literate. What is your definition of literate? Unfortunately his parents are not members of the ruling party to waive the basic qualification for their son to enter into any higher courses. His father, I hear, was a very honest man. Or they could not send their children abroad on tax payers money to get degrees or forge degrees!!

    If you guys call Pirapa as brutal, what do you call the guys who ordered the killing of 20,000+ civilians amd maimed a few thousand civilians despite the whole words outcry!!
    What do you call the President who allows abduction, killing of political opponents in churches and temples and killing journalists in broad daylight in the heart of Colombo with check points at every few yards? What do you call the President who keeps 300,000 people in concentration camps without proper food and medicine and without freedom of movement. But he has money to buy sophisticated weaponry to kill his own citizens.

    Pirapa was not fighting the coward Sri Lankan army, but fighting the Indian, Pakistani, army with Indian, Pakistani, chinese weapons. India guarding the sea!! Now the truth is coming out that India had UN under its sway through Vijay Nambiar and Satish Nambiar. Lankan army is only good at raping, white van kidnapping, robbery and torture.

    Just because you guys call Sri Lanka a democracy, it is not a democracy. I think during Pirapaharan’s time Vanni was more democratic than Colombo!!

    Pirapaharan is thousand times better than Pillaiya, Karuna and Douglas. These three are under the payroll of the so called “democratically elected” Government to do all the human rights violation for them!!

  102. Anton says:

    VP chose the wrong path but had a genuine interest in gaining dignity and respect for Tamils. I do not think that he had a hidden ajenda. If he chose the right path with the same genuine interest, he would have ended up like KP (Kumar Ponnambalam). I could argue both ways. Tamils had no voice. If they had, they were either silenced or on the wrong side. Our priority now is accountability for the 20000 lives lost, then comes the reconciliation. Justice should be done before another KP is born.

  103. Pramod says:

    “Dear Pramod , please take some ginger tea.Its good for digestion………..DBSJ”

    Dear DBS,

    Ginger tea failed.
    No herbs or verbs can help me to digest it.

    So I had 500 ml castor oil to flush the thing out .:)

    Good for you Pramod. Hope you are digestive capacity is restored……. DBSJ

  104. Mylv says:

    DBS,

    …SHAME ON YOU!!!!

    Why?……….. DBSJ

  105. Kumari says:

    As is well known, some of the hard core LTTE cadres had also infiltrated the IDP camps disguised as civilians, making it very hard for the SL forces not to scrutinise the IDP’s closely …recently one of the IDP, a woman had identified an LTTE Cadre among the DP’s, who was responsible for dragging away her child forcibly.

    She had gathered a MOB of fellow IDP women and together battered this man almost to death …our forces watched in vain, helpless as the mob of women grew bigger and the blows heavier …somehow our SL Forces managed to save the man ..and he is badly injured and in hospital right now …

  106. seattle_guy says:

    Nice summary. One thing I would love to know more is about VP’s religious beliefs..I read somewhere he became a christian and wonder if he continued to believe in God. He must have commanded extraordinary respect (and fear) from the cadres. The black tigers sacrificed their lives for the singlemost goal of Eelam. This unlike Islamic terrorists, where they are granted an after-life and goodies. I think it requires true courage. If you know more, please write.

  107. Mylv says:

    DBS ….. …are you taking after Prabakaran as well!!!

    Oh really! Whatever makes you say this?I have the pen , not the gun……..DBSJ

  108. Tilak de Silva says:

    DBSJ I hate to tell you that, against my principles of respect to your journalism, I read an article that is glorifying psychopathic, delusional,murderous hater of other races and human beings.
    May be your next articlenwould be about glorifying his father what “an upright man” he was, who unleashed a monster to the world to be glorified by journalists like you and unpatriotic, paranoid ego maniacal tamil diaspora of ex attorney generals, doctors, lawyers, stock brokers and other bigots.

    DBSJ RESPONDS:

    This is not “glorifying” as you put it.Your definition of glorifying is different from mine.If and when I really do that you will know what “glorifying “ really is ….

    Anyway I hope you will learn …….. (sigh!)

    Would you be happy if I write an article saying the Armed forces fought a “clean” war and that no civilian was killed or injured?

  109. Mylv says:

    Shame on you DBS, you say you are a Journalist!!

    What to do but I am a Journalist and why should I be ashamed of that?…….. DBSJ

  110. Rapaport says:

    Prabhakaran disliked Gandhi’s principles but he failed to realise that it was the non violent gandhi who was responsible for gaining independence for India and not the violent leaders who got eliminated!

  111. Navin says:


    DBSJ RESPONDS:
    For someone who did not read beyond a certain sentence you really write a lot. How did you write this without reading the whole piece? are you simply criticising something you really have no idea about?

    The sentence I quoted is self contained. I have lived in Sri Lanka and like you I too know about VP first hand. My argument is very clear. VP killed many Sinhalese people from the poorest segments of our society with no mercy at all in most abominable ways. Worst, he continued to commit them over two decades. I can live with a political assassin. I can pardon someone for murdering another human out of rage. But I cannot pardon a man who kept butchering villages and bus loads of civilians over two decades. That?s beyond me. To say that such a person is a vibrant symbol of any kind is speaking against all civilized society.


    This is not “glorifying” as you put it.Your definition of glorifying is different from mine.If and when I really do that you will know what “glorifying “ really is ….
    But then you must keep on discovering “enemies”. Hallmark of neo-fascism both Sinhala and Tamil.
    Only the foolish and ignorant will try to deny the obvious fact that VP was a powerful, vibrant symbol of Tamil armed struggle and that he determined the course of Sri Lankan politics for more than two decades
    I want to tell you strongly that intolerant yokels like you are the driving force of Sinhala chauvinism.
    Luckily for some of us the people running newspapers are far more liberal and tolerant than vocal warriors like you .
    Go get a life!

    I didn?t deny that VP was powerful. I deny that he is vibrant.

    DBSJ, I?m truly saddened by your use of language. I too felt like using several choice words. However, as you can see, I have left them out and presented only facts.

    I stand for those farmers and commuters who were killed while they were sleeping in their mud houses or farming their lands or traveling home in the evening train, tired after a full days work. If speaking against their killer, makes me a Sinhala chauvinist, an intolerant yokel, a vocal worrier, a non-liberal and so forth, then so be it. To insult others like this doesn?t look good on you. DM can be as liberal as they want, but they have no right to publish an article that calls a killer like VP a vibrant symbol. This has nothing to do with race or religion but respect for humanity. If ordinary Tamils consider VP a vibrant symbol, then I sympathize with them in the same way I sympathize with those Sinhalese who went on lighting crackers when they heard that VP was killed. However, if you cannot understand that, then I don?t know what to say to you.

    Navin, we are on different planets. No point in prolonging this agony. All the best…….DBSJ

  112. Dhananjaya says:

    Response to Comment 85

    Hi DBSJ

    I was surprised by your response. Looks like you have identified me for another. Dhananjaya is my real name. I was highly impressed with some of your previous articles where you fearlessly mentioned about holding innocent Tamils to bondage by the LTTE etc. However as stated before the present article is one sided.

    You had asked where I was all this time. I am a Sinhalese. As an outsider to the Tamil culture, most of us Sinhalese were looking with horror at the destruction caused by the LTTE to their own.

    The point I raised remains. My point, as discussed with most my close Tamil friends, was that people like Mr. Tondaman (Sr) did achieve much more by ballot (like obtaining 400000 citizenship to Tamils in Sri Lanka) while VP did not achieve anything by bullet after spending an amazing amount of money and inflicting an unimaginable amount of suffering. If he had used this money and the Tamil vote base he could have achieved very much more than Mr T.

    Murder of world respected Tamil intellectuals was also a crime against the very Tamils whom he wanted to protect which can never be corrected.

    If you do not want to mention these facts in your article, it is your right. However as I said before the article is unfortunately one sided.

    DBSJ RESPONDS:

    I am sorry for mistaking you as a Tamil.

    This piece has no “sides” but you cant recognize that

    You are entitled to your opinion.

    It is indeed a pity that all past writings are overlooked because of a (misunderstood) article.

    By the way I’ve written about Thonda on the same lines you mention.

    No point I think in discussing further.

    Waste of time and energy

    All the best.

  113. nanayakkara says:

    The end of a rigid ruthless killer. In the name of tamil eelam he gave both death and destruction to sinhala and tamil both. Those who hail parabakaran are the poeple who left the country after 1983 . Now they are living luxuriously thanks to prabakaran whos july killing of 13 soldiers triggered 83 riots and western countries and developed countries opened their gates to the tamils. If they were in sri lanka they are still using a pedal cycle and living in cadjan huts. They know that. Why cant they send their children to Sri Lanka to revamp the LTTE. Oh no, no, not my children. with our money the poor tamil youths in Sri Lanka must fight and kill the sinhala and die. We cant give up our cars, sumptious food and cosy life. Well done diaspora.

  114. jats says:

    he was the worst thing that happened to the tamils, if this murderer was not born, today the tamils in sri lanka would have been far better off, like the moderate tamils living in colombo and other parts of sri lanka.. some tamils in SL are world famous for their achivemnets and the sinhalese adore them and respect them… hadnt been for this foolish man tamils in jaffna would have been second to none, in ten to 20 yrs time tamils in jaffna will be second to none as long as another fool like prabakaran DOESNT turns up!

  115. confused confucius says:

    Re: Comment 45
    ———————–
    First – I should have said “VANI… Villas but contrarily we serve Udumbu / Aamai Iraichchi”

    Second – I am confused and I believe I have chosen the right name

    Thirdly – Thanks to whomever who adopted a no English policy in Sri Lanka we never learnt in English. So our generation unlike yours DBSJ, will struggle to understand the difference between “A chronicle of military exploits” and this article which is not a biography. LOL I thought this was one

    Fourthly – I wish the same like you, to all the people of Vanni, and wildlife (especially the udumbus, aamais et al) of the Vanni Jungle……….. the guns are silent, let peace prevail

    Sarcasm! sarcasm! There is a difference and as the French say “Vive La Diffrence”……DBSJ

  116. Jayantha Jayaweera says:

    The Srilankan Tamil population is 18% ($3.6 million) out of 20million people living in Srilanka according to 1983 census. There are 1.2million of Srilankan Tamils scattered all over the world since 1983. Most of them are naturalised in those countries. There are nearly 0.8 million upcountry Tamils and 0.6 millions Colombo Tamils living outside North and East. They have been living in Sinhala areas all their lives and never supported Tamil Ealam. Most recently, the Eastern Tamils (0.3 millions) severed their support to the Northern Tamils and majority of them are enjoying their newly acquired freedom under GOSL. This leaves only 0.7 million people living in the North including Jaffna. Say 50% of this 0.7 million Tamils are supporters of Ealam. Is it fair for this 0.35 million Tamils which is 1.75% of the total population to demand a separate state for them within Srilanka

  117. Nakeeb M Issadeen says:

    True. VP was the symbol of Tamil armed struggle (and terrorism). Fortunately or unfortunately he did not leave a heir to his position as the Master of the Game for the Tamil liberation struggle for a separate Tamil Eelam.
    Currently, KP and Castro are fighting against each other to build up the movement that VP has created, through democratic means with a vast amount of financial reserves by the former and through violent means by the later.
    The strong indications are that KP will be dethroned and the reactive elements of pro LTTE Diaspora will take over the struggle with the help of some Western nations that are deeply disturbed by the undiplomatic attitude of Sri Lankan Government.
    Sensible journalists like DBSJ and Dr. Nadesan (Uthayan, Australia) have a great responsibility in their hands to help the Tamil Diaspora to form a more constructive approach for the re-establishment of Tamil rights and legitimate aspirations in Sri Lanka.

  118. Dimuth Silva -dimuthsilva87@yahoo.com says:

    Jeyaraj….

    DELETED

  119. selvarajah says:

    excellent stuff; please write about other leaders and commnders who fought for Tamils and died recently along with prabhaharan..

  120. Nishatharan says:

    What about Prabhakaran the bank robber who robbed so many banks in the 70s and 80s. What about Duraiyaph murder, murder of 4 Police Detectives, CIT bomb where nearly 100 call girls died, madras airport bomb, Pettah bomb, air lanka avro bomb where Japanese couple also died’ in the 70s and 80s. With respect Sir, Prabhakaran was never an intellectual; always a bandit and a serial killer. He gave a bad name to ‘Tamils’ all over the world.

    Did any one say Prabhakaran was an “intellectual”? Also aren’t some white collar criminals “intellectuals”? Cant one be a bandit,killer and still be an intellectual?…….DBSJ

  121. Roy De Mel says:

    I want you to know you have at least one enemy – I hate you, fuckwit

    At least one enemy? You an enemy.you flatter yourself nitwit.zombies dont qualify.. …….DBSJ

  122. T.Mahalingam says:

    Dear Sir,

    Am not a supporter of LTTE, but thank you for documenting V.P ‘s History for the future readers.

    Best Regards
    T.Mahalingam

  123. Imelda Nanayakkara says:

    Re above para 116 – Mr Jayaweera is wrong. Tamils today (including Indian Tamils) comprise less than 10% of the total Sri Lankan population. Thanks to Prabha majoirty of the Tamils live in western countries. Of the left over, majority are in the South, living amicably with the Sinhalese. Lets hope Sri Lanka will now become the New Singapore, Prabha stopped us from from achieving this in 1983

  124. Rimfirejones says:

    DBS-as usual an excellent article. I have been an avid reader of your articles.

    I always thought, as a previous poster pointed out that we are a nation that has book learning but very little progressive thinking. Reading some comments from both Sinhalese and Tamils it is obvious that I am right… we are a literate nation filled with brainless brats.

  125. selvan073@hotmail.com says:

    I agree with the title and purpose of the write up. All is right except the circumstances of his death.

    The deliberate confusion is not doing justice to this great warrior.

    Please fill in the gap in your earlier write up.

    PLEASE CLARIFY THE CIRCUMSTANCES OF HIS DEATH.

    Final hours of VP??

    Why do you want me to clarify the circumstances of his death? Why me?……..DBSJ

  126. Dhanamjaya says:

    Hi DBSJ

    Your comment on 112

    Again you seem to have misunderstood me.

    I did not criticise your article. I still regard you as a good writer who was independent in his reproting. I was only trying to show another side of the storey. Even at this late stage if the Tamils use their votes and the resources in a more efficient manner, they probably can achive much more.

    Kind regards

    Not to worry……DBSJ

  127. shankar says:

    comment116

    jayantha

    the tamils living otside just like the jews will come back oneday to the promised land. first they have to get powerful and rich.

  128. R.S.Ganeshan says:

    Congrats on your responses in #53 & 62.
    No time to go beyond that, but I shall.

    Yet, what about Padmanaba,Sri Sabaratnam,and Umamaheswaran. Prabakaran was involved in their killings.It would be of interest to know about them and why they were killed by LTTE.

    In this regard is it not significant that, but for Prabakaran and his colleagues and henchmen involved with him, no Tamil politician or other Tamil leader was ever killed up to now, by any Sinhalese or the state security apparatus ?

    Umamaheswaran was RAW inspired Intra- PLOTE killing ………………DBSJ

  129. shankar says:

    comment 110-rapporport

    and that chandrabose fellow was shivering when the japanese wanted to tranfer him from one submarine to another in mid ocean to take him to japan. he flatly refused to get into the boat. contrast with nonviolent ghandhi who would have faced death unflinchingly. when you come to think of it prabaharans only act of
    ‘bravery’ if you call it that was to shoot an unarmed man durayappah. karuna was right when he said he was never on the battlefield. what is the point of reading about napolean, who was always in the thick of battle supervising it personally. if prabaharan had at least come once in away to the battlefield the cadres would have been motivated and probably not surrendered or retreated. also he would have got to know the problems they were facing first hand.

  130. Tilak de Silva says:

    DBSJ, I understand the meaning ‘glorifying’, cannot understand why you want to write up an article symbolising
    a terrorist movement headed by a psychopathic monster funded hate driven elitist tamil diaspora and bigots.
    Your intion in writing this article may not be to glorify but that is exactly how you portray a psychopathic monster.

    I like many other persons are deeply disturbed by civilian deaths. Once again you imply civilian deaths were by the armed forces. You know as well as others, civilians were used by VP to protect his clan of goons and the relatives and, this fact was revealed by many, many distraught civilians who escaped clutches of ltte.
    I still have my respect for you as a talented able journalist
    and a very sound minded and also we share the same Alma Mater.

  131. Srilankan says:

    I used to be a fully integrated Srilankan. My life was turned upside down, by the mischevious agitations of the tamil leaders, and their ridiculous demands for Eelam. The Govt of the day, was provoked into reacting in a cackhanded manner, it must be said.

    Now I am a fully integrated European, and have lived outside Srilanka longer than in Ceylon. This doesnt stop, the so called tamil leaders, demanding I attend ‘community events’ and ‘cultural affairs’. They are for the most part, tax collection activities.

    Many folks have built lucrative careers in smuggling, trafficking , gunrunning, drugs, prostitution and child abuse. Refugees suffer greatly along the ‘snake route’ , and their suffering is not over, even when they reach their promised lands. They have handed over large sums of money, only to end up in slavery and servitude.

    Ltte has created Eelam in Toronto, London, Paris, Athens et al and the war kept people moving. This brought enormous financial rewards for the few, and misery for the many.

    Ltte wanted a war, and correctly predicted Rajapaksa will give them a war. But it turned out to be, not the kind of war they anticipated.

    Europe is crawling with tigers, and it is business as usual I expect. Many of us are reduced to, ducking and diving and dodging these characters.

    I hope this mother of alll wars has some good outcome.

  132. hasan says:

    You always write nice article. I am not aware whether you write books also. If not, please write some books with added information about the articles which attracted more comments (including this)

    Maybe a book of comments then……DBSJ

  133. Maximus J Anandappa says:

    DBS,
    Your biographical note on VP was very well written with a neutral tone.

    On hindsight what did VP win for the poor Tamils who lived in Jaffna and the East with his armed struggle?

    Failing to grab the political opportunities presented in 1987, 1990 (Premadasa), 1995 (Chandrika) and 2002 (Ranil) equates to really betraying the Tamils? Not only did he squander these opportunities he killed Rajiv and Premadasa and attempted to kill Chandrika and politcally killed and buried Ranil forever. (not that I am a great fan of these leaders, but at least these guys attempted to bring a political solution and give peace a chance).
    Conscripting Tamil children (as canon-fodder during latter stage) and converting certain elements from his people into human bombs is something that I could never stomach or condone. Worst is what he did in 2005. Getting a bribe (Rs 185 M or so) from Rajapakse’s (refer your own article) and forcing the Tamil voters to boycott the election that facilitated Mahinda’s emergence and Praba’s own downfall. Isn’t this a very shameful act against the very people whom you say you represent?. Posterity should remember these details in addtion to all the moderate Tamils (really the educated) that he eliminated (Neelan Thiruchelvam, etc) who could have worked with GOSL to ensure that Tamils achieved equal status. It is true that prior to 1983 (or say 1976) Tamils had legitimate grievances, but they have now lost or eroded all whatever they had previously (in life style, housing, infrastructure, education, acceptance as a friendly, intelligent race, dignity- look at the refugees- heart breaking) due to the unrealistic ambition of one man. Eviction of Muslims from the north is a racist move by VP probably even worse than the pro-government Sinhala thug sponsored July 83 riots. (MJA)

  134. BADA says:

    Prabakaran surrendered and pleaded for his life together with his wife and children and all the surviving top ranking leaders ..they were too scared to die!

    The Govt. managed to extract all the fine details of the LTTE and were also successful in taking Prabakaran along memory lane ..it must have been very painful for him, to be made to remember what Fathers went thru when their children were dashed to pieces on the ground by the Ltte …

    ..lets imagine, Charles Anthony’s eyes being gorged out and tortured for 3 days before Prabakaran …Brain surgery done on Prabakaran without Anaesthisia …he was reminded of his gruesome life on earth, within a 3 day period …and tasted part of the Hell he created for others before actually going there …with his team and family!

    … now it seems they are fighting for Elam in the pits of Hell and have been assigned a place in the Lake of FIRE ..he has sent an invitation to KP and the Tamil Diaspora to join him there!

    Are you telling us the army tortured and killed surrendees.Its a war crime yakko……DBSJ

  135. sguru says:

    DBSJ
    Well done. You tried portraying VP as a man and characters. He had the qualities and strength and created virtual tamil home land in North for atleast 10-15 years.
    This will be recorded in history. He gave lesson to sinhala majority people and told them they can not take things for granted. The terrorism they say is response to their actions.

    SL able to achieve this victory with the support of India,china,pakistan. For VP he got only diaspora tamils.

  136. Tamilan says:

    For those who are worrying too much about VP’s pas mistakes, lets compare.

    (1) Prabaharan forced Young Tamils to join him, not always but he did it. (It is wrong , but it is wrong even when US does it in the name of ‘drafting’ ). He was responsible for the killing og his enemies. Once upon a time, he may have been responsible killed innocent Sinhalese. Not now; However, see Mahinda’s record in (4)

    (2) Mahinda and co has been killing Tamils just for being Tamils. Babies, women, old, young, no one is free from the brutal shells/ aircraft launced bombs (whatever the correct names those murderous instruments are called). Mahinda and co kidnap Tamils and ask them for money. No money= killed, money deposited into his bank = sometimes released, some times still killed.

    (3) Mahinda and co keeps nearly a quarter of a million in concentration camps (Do you want to call them ‘weldfare camps? ). The young boys are systematically murdered, young women are raped and then murdered.

    (4) Like a jewel in his crown, ‘King’ Mahinda was responsible for the muder of 20,000 Tamils in a single day. Hmmm, do you think VP can match this?

    Now compare who is worse; Or just pretend King Mahinda is best, UNTIL you see the real foreigners takes all the big businesses and jobs from you;

  137. Ranil Apuhammy says:

    My view about Karuna and his relationship with VP:

    I agree he is a traitor, but what I am trying to say is he became a traitor for a reason. Something made him lose the inspiration he had for 20 years. The story line is he was greedy for money. It may be true. But being someone in the upper leadership who interacted with the other leaders, he became too familiar with them. As the saying goes familiarity breeds contempt. He obviously didn’t have the respect for Prabhakaran that the regular members had. The regular cadre and public don’t get to see Prabhakaran. They never get to know Prabhakaran as a person. So to them, Prabhakaran is the image presented and taught to them throughout their lives as an infallible person beyond the human realm. Karuna on the other hand interacted with these leaders on the human level, and as such he probably became angry seeing the gap between the human Prabhakaran he saw and the super-human Prabhakaran the public saw. Envy, jealousy, and other things may have also played their part in his decision, but to me it is clear he had lost respect for Prabhakaran, and that was due to seeing the human side of him. There is nothing wrong with a human side, because everyone is a human. But Karuna would naturally be offended when his opinions or advice were over ruled based on the fact that Prabhakarans position was super-human, something he would not agree with from over-familiarity.

    Again these are just my opinions, but I am trying to understand what has happened as much possible through reason rather than emotion or the official acceptable stories. It is clear Karuna was a traitor, but why did he become a traitor? The reason is he lost faith in the infallibility of Prabhakaran. Why would he lose faith? Because he interacted with and saw him as a regular ordinary fallible human, which led to familiarity and contempt. How much was he justified in this? That no one can know, but certainly Prabhakaran needed to heed the advice of senior advisors. Lack of this resulted in destruction. There is no way all of the senior advisors came up with this plan to trap everyone in 1 square kilometer of beach and get wiped out. This plan is only possible when everyone becomes “yes men” and there is no independent thinking.

  138. Tamilan says:

    comment 117

    >Sensible journalists like DBSJ and Dr. Nadesan (Uthayan, Australia) have a great responsibility in their hands to help the Tamil Diaspora to form a more constructive approach for the re-establishment of Tamil rights and legitimate aspirations in Sri Lanka.

    (EDITED).

    I agree with DBS in some points abd disagree with him in many. However, I have respect for DBS.

    Thank you for the comment but some lines had to be edited and you know why……DBSJ

  139. R Senthil says:

    Next to Balraj, Karuna was probably the greatest field commander in the LTTE. He led the 1st phase of Oyatha Alaigal III which drove the SLA all the way from Oddusuddan to Omanthai in one week, totally reversing all the SLA’s 2.5 year gains from Jayasikurui. He had raised the Jeyanthan Brigade which participated in many battles since 1993. Thalaivar had selected him as the only field commander to participate in the peace process (Jeyam later filled his role, by which point there was no more peace process).

    LTTE bootlickers explain Karuna’s defection as the result of a materialistic lifestyle. If this was true, Karuna would have left the organization much earlier, and at a time when things were going poorly (like 1995). In 2004, the LTTE was at the height of its power, coming very close to imposing the ISGA with international backing. People have missed this simple disincentive for Karuna to split at such a crucial stage.

    If Karuna had remained in the LTTE, it is very likely that a separate or near-separate Tamileelam would’ve been established by today. The LTTE could’ve launched Eelam War IV with a conventional war in the north and guerrilla war in the east, totally tying down the SLA and preventing victories from taking place. Today the LTTE would have been the ones laughing at the SLA, not the other way around.

  140. Ricky says:

    Great journalism DBS.

    Always bringing your A-game you are! Top stuff!

    Ricky, London

  141. Senthuran says:

    Stop giving so much time and space to this monster. Lets focus on moving forward and trying to help those civilians return to a normal life.

  142. rajiv says:

    I am tempted to let my imagination run wild and wonder what could have been had VP had the foresight to accept the 1987 Indo-Lanka accord and worked within that framework. Unfortunately, as you rightly pointed out, his vision was so narrow that he failed to understand the geopolitics of the Tamil armed struggle. A compromise leading to equal economic opportunity (as it exists in Singapore) with some measure of autonomy (as envisaged in the Indo-Lanka Accord) would have been an utopic solution than the outcome of the armed struggle that today rendered our people refugees and destitutes.

    The cost is enormous. And unfortunately even the government does not seem to be taking the rights steps in this hour of THEIR victory. I somehow do not think peace and normalcy will be a reality in Sri Lanka in my generation, or the next or even the one after that. We the “diaspora” Tamils have to resign to our fate; no option but to settle down in the countries of our refuge; hoping one day, someday a future generation will return to the ancestral homeland.

    As always, very nice article DBS. Very proud to have a journalist of your calibre in our midst.

    Thanks Rajiv. After reading all this venom your words are most welcome………….DBSJ

  143. Ranil Apuhammy says:

    Sorry to babble on, DBS, i know this is a thread about VP, but everthing leads back to Karuna.

    Karuna left the LTTE primarily because of a dispute he had with the central Vanni administration headed by Pottu Amman, Thamilenthi, and Nadesan among others (i.e. non-military cadre)- but not Prabakaran. People now try to completely deny this, but the truth is that Thalaivar had highly admired Karuna and considered Karuna to represent the future of the Tamil race as a warrior people. It was a very special relationship with Karuna that led Thalaivar to allow a high level of autonomy to the Batticaloa/Amparai district command. Karuna was able to collect his own taxes and run his own operation quite independently from the Vanni. He had merited this treatment because he had produced results.

    Thalaivar allowed this autonomous status for an important reason- Karuna and the Eastern cadre were Thalaivar’s insurance policy in case there was a coup against him in the Vanni.

    The Vanni establishment represented by Pottu & Friends did not like 1) Batticaloa having such an autonomous status from them and probably 2) were resentful of Karuna’s special relationship with Thalaivar. In their view, the LTTE was supposed to be a highly centralized movement with de facto state structures. Karuna represented a deviation from this. It is probably true that Karuna was corrupt and pocketing the $$ for his own benefit. What certain people have forgotten is that Karuna using his own means- by hook or by crook- had kept the East under the LTTE. That should have been sufficient for the Vanni bunch to look the other way.

    **Almost exactly the same thing happened to KP**. KP much like Karuna was fairly crooked and pocketed a great deal of diaspora funds while purchasing arms and other things. This corruption did not change the fact that KP was extremely good at what he did and delivered the goods on a reliable basis. KP also ran the overseas operation and was careful not to get into confrontations with foreign governments. It was under KP’s relatively decentralized, mafia-like watch that the LTTE held control over the Tamil diaspora.

    All this ended during the early CFA when Thamilchelvan went abroad and witnessed the utterly criminal nature of the LTTE international operation first-hand. He went back and reported to Thalaivar. KP was stripped of his arms procurement duties, and Castro’s influence soared. It was under Castro’s watch that the LTTE began doing very dumb things in foreign countries, like the Jeyadevan episode. Castro in the Vanni thought that he could run the international operation the same way that the Vanni operation was run!

    Coming back to Karuna, Thalaivar respected him but the reality was that Pottu & Friends were much closer in proximity than Karuna. Thalaivar had to make a decision and he decided against Karuna. Near the end of the Good Friday Offensive in April 2004, Karuna made an agreement with Thalaivar to retire from politics/militancy and to be exiled to another country. The battle ended so quickly not because of Karuna’s military incompetence, but because Karuna was not eager to get involved in a long drawn-out battle that would’ve ruined the iyakkam.

    The LTTE failed to honor its agreement with Karuna. The Tigers gunned down Karuna’s brother Reggie in Sept 2004 and murdered many other Karuna loyalists. From that point onward, it was war. Karuna had no choice but to ally with with the SLA for his survival. He launched a guerrilla campaign against the LTTE from Polonnaruwa, and by early 2005 the LTTE again lost control over most of the East.

    Mahinda was later elected President, thanks to the LTTE, and the rest is history.

    Thamilselvan’s role in the decline and fall of LTTE is immense…………DBSJ

  144. Jeevan says:

    VP is no more, thank God!

    VP,we have to agree is a Dictator in the sense that,what he told was the final LAW and no one had the power or authority to air a difference of opinion.The only person who had some sort of stance to do it was Anton who’s demise hit VP hard.

    He was already rattled by Karuna and when Tamilselvam and Balraj expired,the game was all over.VP was never going to hold so much land with the limited resources he had.But that period from 2002 – 2006 had given him false hope that the status quo would be maintained and he seemed to strongly believe he was invincible.

    He firmly believed at the last moment,when push came to shove,the Big brother will forget everything and come to his aid just like how they saved his arse in Vadamaradchi,but that was not the case.Then he pinned too much hopes on the noise emanating from Tamil Nadu – I think he was lured into believing it as TN had given them a cold shoulder since May,1991.

    Also the diaspora creating huge ruckus too lured him into thinking that it was a matter of time before GoSL halted the offensive.But he for once met his match in MR \ GR \ SF.The latter 2 having survived miraculously from his trademark attack.It was almost as if fate,they survived and he didnt have that luck.

    Lets understand one thing first. Contrary to what you all think VP was a killer.He knew only that and that was the problem.Karuna I would say defected because,he has far more rationale thinking than VP.He knew separate country IS NOT possible at all.He read the writing on the wall very well.Other material liking’s were only supplementaries.

    Apart from that I dont see any worthy happenings on the war crimes front. Remember it’s the US which can pursue it,that’s what we have seen before. Its really funny that US commits much more crimes elsewhere, but they are also the upholder’s of justice. But they WILL NOT do anything that will affect their ally in the region,India. We all know what India’s stance is. So there is no real hopes on that front as well.
    Bottom line is LTTE is finished and we have to rebuild the country, all groups, Singhala, Tamil, Muslim etc included.

  145. Dayan says:

    To Mr. Ranil Appuhamy –

    What is it with you? Are you infatuated with Karuna all of a sudden.

    Bottom line is that Karuna is a traitor, and will always be known as one.
    What goes around, comes around…..

  146. Matthew says:

    I stumbled upon this site by accident, but i’m so glad that I did. Such a wealth of information and discussion.

    Better than the BBC, CNN, Al Jazeera media sources we usually get used to seeing.

    Mr. Jeyaraj – you seem to have a lot of people that follow your words on here, and I too will join that group.

    Keep up the good work. I’m a Tamil youth living in London, and i’m pretty tired of the constant LTTE chanting and Red Tiger flag waving……I have no interest in the LTTE, only the regular Tamil civilians who want to live peacefully and get along with their lives.
    Hopefully this occurs in the near future. Peace…..

  147. peace says:

    DBS,
    Your response to Kingsley on comment#99,you have created a forum for all, to have a dialogue.Some comments are very disturbing but this forum has a healing effect for all people with extreme ideologies and moderates. It’s catharsis, in a way therapeutic.I wish every conflict in the world had a forum where people can talk rather than kill each other.If I were you wouldn,t change course,keep up the good work.

  148. RS Wickramasinghe says:

    DBSJ, I am not condemning your article, as usual it is insightful and edgey and full of choice prose, without being sanctimonious and hysterical as so many commentators on both sides of the ethnic are wont to.

    I also welcome the debate this piece engenders and the edgey title that provokes it.

    I think readers looking for an exhaustive account of Prabhakaran’s rise should look to T.Sabaratnam’s biography published on the Sangam website. There are some details of his life which differ from your account and many inconvenient truths about the behaviour of various governments that all Sinhalese should be aware of, especially those that think everything that led to the LTTE magically blinked into existence after the 1983 riots.

    My two cents in #81 are aimed at some your readers who have taken the the title “powerful symbol of Tamil armed struggle as their cue to call him ”charismatic” or portray him as fundamentally noble in spite his mistakes, atrocities and failures.

    Admittedly their reactions reinforces your point of the power of Prabhakaran as a symbol. I also absolutely do not accept him as symbol of Cholan warrior or master of ancient martial culture sitting beneath the words “armed struggle”, for me this is interchangeable with barbarian, the huns and the goths would rejoice at such high sentimentalism! ;)

    I also wonder if fundamentally the reason Prabhakaran failed was because his idea of Eelam was from a Tamil world from the primitive past unwilling to be guided by those who had engaged and lived in the modern world (i.e Balasingham and Padmanathan) and this is the Fools Paradise you say he was living in your last article.

  149. belle says:

    DBSJ,
    I am not sure if I have correctly understood the way you see SL’s path to the future. Are you against the separate land (Eelam) and federalist solutions but want a pluralist, unitary state? If yes, I can relate to that but I fear it may not be possible for SL.

    Being truly multicultural is the hardest thing for a state to do but also the most rewarding. I am a SL Tamil, second-generation, from Singapore, and I get my greatest highs when I am in culturally mixed company. I feel a certain pride in being able to not only overcome racial boundaries but to welcome intercultural exchange. My father, who migrated after World War 2 from SL came from a poor farming family in Illavalai. You would have expected him to hang out only with his kind. But no, he seems to have thrown himself into Singapore’s multicultural mix, and showed me from young that crossing racial/ethnic boundaries for friendship is the most natural thing in the world.

    However, not everyone even in Singapore embraces that (particularly the majority community). Many people still believe that racialism, sticking by your own community, is what nature intended. Fortunately for Singapore, we have a constitution that gives people no choice but to recognise the equal rights of all to practice and socially reproduce their own culture and religion, and we observe the secularity of public spaces. No religion is exalted over others. The promotion of Mandarin does get more state resources, but people are free to promote their own languages. The official language of business is English, a neutral language.

    But Sri Lanka is not Singapore. Singapore started as an immigrant society, with people coming from various parts of Asia. It was thus easy to get us to accept equality of all ethnic cultures–most of us were from elsewhere, and we had no original ties to the land. With the emphasis being on English, no group feels unduly privileged or marginalised.

    Sri Lanka however is used to a long history of existing as separate ethnic lands. The responses here to VP suggest that people cannot yet get out of the racist mindset. The Sinhalese responses demonise VP without being able to recognize that it was their racist nationalism that brought him into being. If they think VP was a monster, they must recognize that he merely mirrored back to them their own monstrosity. Yes, VP killed innocent people. But so has the SL government. How can they find it in themselves to celebrate their government’s massacre of their own fellow-citizens? They can do so only because of their racism. To them, Tamil lives are worth less than nothing.

    I cannot see how, if your mainstream Sinhalese thinks along those lines, that SL can carve out a constitution that will give equal rights to Tamils as to Sinhalese. Will the Sinhalese people allow this to happen, or will riots break out? Will they continue to vote for a majority Sinhalese government that they may feel has sold away their rights as a MAJORITY community?

    Singapore succeeded in part with multiculturalism because we had nationalist leaders who insisted on pluralism and equality right from the founding of the nation. In fact, we separated from Malaysia on those principles. And, we have had the same ruling party in power since independence who have remained adamant at policing and enforcing that equality.

    For SL to try this option, it will need a watertight constitution that protects equal rights and recognizes all religions, languages and cultures. Not proportional rights but equal rights. For instance, #116, Jayantha Jayaweera’s mind is going along the track of proportionate rights, ie. if you are 15% of the country, then you get 15% of rights. That cannot be so. It must be 100% against 100% of rights for all.

    Also, the government must have the will to police and enforce this constitution’s principles. There must also be provisions made for recourse for Tamils in the event that a government comes into power that does not respect the constitution. All these contingencies must be thought through before anyone signs on the dotted line.

    Its location and geopolitical considerations mean that Singapore can do nothing else but respect all cultures. Otherwise, Malaysia, India and China will land on our tiny heads. But Sri Lanka doesn’t have these geopolitical considerations to stop it from straying into genocide and Sinhala chauvinism, as we have seen.

    Look at Malaysian’s full-blown Malay nationalism–the minorities have very little recourse to intervene against this. They just have had to live with it.

    So while a unitary state seems very appealing, I am not sure that Sri Lanka has the historical and cultural background to support this. It may need a third party to act as mediator. A federal system may make more sense.

  150. sundaram says:

    Hi Jay,
    another great article. thanks for this master piece. Mr VP started this freedom struggle as a genuine person. but some stage the western world bought him to do their dirty works. some of the tamil diaspora were also responsible for this. when IPKF came to Jaffna, I had a chance to meet one of the Indian high commission first officer at Gnanam’s hotel. he told me that Mr Anton Balasingham is a CIA agent.I did not belive that time. but when MR Rajive Ghandi and President Premadasa were assasinated then I knew these were not just a revenge but wider western interest.

  151. Dharshan says:

    DBSJ,

    I’m new to your blog and I find insight to be refreshingly different.
    Prabakaran was brutal and terrible in his ways, a monster as some among us would call him but most importantly he remains a human whether we would have it that way or not. While I have no sympathy with this mans vision, I find it disturbing to find that a human being who had preference to mundane things like what he would like to wear and what he would like to eat, a human being who could love, who could feel ,was at the same time a cold blooded killer.

    If we don’t understand that humans are capable of inhuman things and attribute it to monsters then we have failed our intelligence. I think it is imperative to understand that Prabhakaran was human before he ever was a monster, and any among us have the same liability to become a monster if we fall in to false dreams. You article illustrates that one must be human before one becomes a monster.

    I was not aware of your writings until one of my uncles pointed me to your blog, I find most of your ideas are highly compatible with those of mine but I have some questions. I understand that the tamil people have suffered alot, I understand that they seek equality in society. But equality as noble as it is- is too vague. And I sympathize with the people but I fine it difficult to empathize – can you please enlighten me as to what exactly is needed, what does this country have to do? What must I do?

  152. Pillai says:

    DBS – I don’t know if you’ve seen this already but it’s certainly interesting to see the President distinguishing the difference between terrorists and insurgents…….

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=N9WZQZ9JoK4

  153. Tamil says:

    Who are the next Tamil leaders, capable of handling the Rajbaksa’s genocidal regime?

    Is it Sangaree, Deva or Karu, what a future for the Tamil people is in waiting!!!. As predicted by Gotha, he
    achieved his own goal of destroying 10 generation of Tamils.

    Now with the help of paramilitary they are ethnically cleansing the east soon the north east, who is going to stop it, no more LTTE, where is the voice and the action.???

    Come on Rajabaksa’s puppet Tamil leaders.

  154. Naasthihan says:

    The Geeta gave VP the strength and belive to kill the kith and kin of him – the own people whom he fought for since 1980s. He must have belived that waht DBSJ has written as “It was the warriors duty to kill his adversary regardless of kinship.”

  155. N2 says:

    DBSJ perhaps one day you might like to write about how Prabaharan was trapped and how the bait (his family) happened to be in that area for that purpose.
    Who brought them there?
    Who was killed first? Was Prabaharan made to watch?

    The whole story must be told one day.

  156. Sad & Mad says:

    DBS,
    A lot of individuals are sad re VP’s death. Same time we are mad re result due to his actions/path/social value/political view/……
    We have to analyze / criticize this struggle for betterment of our people and/or other national struggles…
    When I analyze the photos & the reports, Ive some doubts…
    SL govt won’t reveal the facts about VP’s death due to the war crime & Tamils wont try to find the truth due to their false pride. But the truth will come out in our time

  157. Soniya says:

    VP was a modern day Che Gueverra.

    Look up Che Guevera’s beginnings, ideologies and subsequent execution of plans.
    Yes, Che was a cold blooded killer too, but there’s no denying that he sought revolution against the oppressor and now the whole world appreciates him for it despite the 14,000 or more people he killed using death squads to achieve it.

    Read his writings….they are inspirational, but don’t go watching bogus Hollywood remakes – they’re just nonsense. Read the real books that matter.

  158. dev says:

    Nice one DBJ, we need more Tamils like you among us.

    I was in a meeting recently where NGO’s and Tamil reps ..ect were speaking about their experiences and as expected diaspora tamil kids were there in their numbers spewing hate and falsehood , while I have lived in SL (Jaffna) during the 87-90 90-95 and 95+ periods could have countered their falsehood stayed silent due to being outnumbered ….unfortunate I guess but thats what we the silent majority in both the Sinhalse and Tamils have been reduced to !!!

  159. Sulochana says:

    “As you say there is a chance now for this equality struggle to get on the tracks again.

    But I cant and dont want it to be a Tamil – oriented ethnic struggle.

    Multi – ethnic, like – minded persons have to keep on struggling with the unfinished task of nation building.

    The goal and vision should be for a United, Pluralist,Egalitarian NEW Sri Lanka”

    At last!! This extraction from your response to a comment is music to my ears. This is what i would say we want the diaspora to communicate to the Sinhalese in the South. This is the only way for our communities to work together for our long dreamt of a United, Pluralist, Egalitarian and “NEW” Sri Lanka to be realised. Not by harping about riots agains the tamils including the one in 1983. Of course some reflection on the past is an important part of moving forward and any process of reconciliation. Would it help if the GOSL Sri Lanka come forward and admit that the 83 was a mistake and never again?
    The majority the Sinhaelse helped save their tamil neighbours and friends during those riots. But lets not delve on the negatives only. The majority sinhaelse are accomodating and willing to live side by side as you can see how the Tamils live in the South are not ‘harassed’ by the Sinhalese people per se. Of course, we need to recognise there are serious grievances of the Tamil community in Sri Lanka that needed to be addressed immediately before another VP decides to take up arms and go on a rampage that destroys whats left of our beautiful country.

    As someone who has been trained to lie low in the classroom the moment you hear a loud noise from the age of 9, and being someone terrified of traveling in public transport as i did for another 14 years or so until was able to travel in a private vehicle, and learning as i did about the plight of innocent tamils who had their horrendous stories as victims of war whilst being a producer of a TV program that promoted conflict resolution and sustainable peace, today i want nothing more than a UNITED, PLURALIST, EGALITARIAN, “NEW” Sri Lanka. Would it help if i do a project to record 14 million voices of the Sinhalese from the South saying this loud and clear and make it available for the Tamil Dispora?
    How much motivation do you need to work towards this common goal of ours other than the site of 250,000 innocent civilians living in undignified conditions, waiting in line for food, water, and abandoned elderly and a significant number of orphas waiting for generous extension of care and protection? Isnt it time that you understood that what this country needs is constructive, non violent activism and generous contributions to send those people back to their places and not vacuous rhetorics? And begin to take some responsibility to our own shoulders rather than waiting for the Government to do it all?
    Tell me what will motiva the Tamil Diaspora to understand the need of the hour???

  160. lankan soul says:

    I sometimes ask my self, how innocent people, become entangled into a nightmare for themselves and others because of the mistakes and lack of vision and true patriotism to the nation by a handful of power hungry politicians.
    Prabakaran has 2 conflicting personalities in him. One is a humble person who is kind motivated and with good leadership qualities while the other is the exact opposite which is that of a criminal and a cold blooded killer.
    His humble personality is the one which he obtained on birth while the other cold blooded character is one which he acquired in the process of turning into a rebel.
    So basically what i am trying to point out is he is a by-product of dirty politics played by our elders both Sinhalese and Tamil.
    Just because he was not getting the grades in school doesnt mean he is dumb. He was the CEO of a multi million $ global rebel/terrorist outfit with a well diciplined fighting cadre both at home and abroad.
    Its unfortunate that Sri Lanka couldnt make the best out of him for the betterment of the country. His adamantness and the absence of an amnesty to him would have contributed to this ssituation.
    The reason for his fame and doom is the same . Prabakaran is the LTTE and the LTTE is Prabakaran personification.

    Prabakarans main strength was in his fighting skills and the weakness was in diplomacy and politics.
    He took on both responsibilty by being the boss of the tigers. Though he had a political wing it was just his mouth piece expressing only his views and not an independent body capable of capitalizing the military victories he achieved by negotiating a settlement with the Sri Lankan government.
    Thus he thought only from a military perspective induced by the dream for a seperate tamil homeland.
    Nor was his comrades able to convince him to think of anything less.
    One has to also look at the “ageing factor” – when prabakaran was a youth , he was strong both physically and mentaly therefore he was capable of various stunts to reverse adverse fortunes that the outfit ran into.
    With age and no viable solution in sight fighting against a well organised and well equiped army from multiple fronts could be demoralising and it can lead to fatal decisions and desperate acts. This was evident over the last 2 years.
    The tamil people and cadres was suffering from war fatigue after decades of war and they was not sharing the same passion for a seperate homeland as previous to the ceasfire agreement. Thats perhaps why he was in a desperado act and had to force people to fight at gunpoint.
    The Sri Lankan military and the President have requested him to surrender but his free spirit within him had too much ego. He chose to die fighting instead……

    Forever Prabakaran will be remembered as the man who was the ultimate warrior who fought for the rights of his people or as a monster who ruined the country by waging war.

    I guess less would be spoken about the treacherous politicians who divided the tamils and the singhalese and created deadly characters (like that of Prabakaran and Rohana Wijeweera) out of a few good men.

    Even Rome fell Prabakaran was no exception. Even a great warrior like General Densil Kobbakaduwa laid his life for the country. Battles are lost and won. War brings only destruction and missery to a nation no matter for what reason it is fought.

    I hope that the determined President who had a military victory will learn from the mistakes of his foe and not repeat it.
    I hope that he will consolidate the military victory with a political solution so that we honour the warriors both sinhalese and tamil who laid there lives in the name of freedom.

    As for Vellupillai Prabakaran I pray to God to forgive him for his mistakes and may his soul rest in peace.

    As for the Sri Lankans I hope that we will seize this opportunity to embrace each other with love and care and never again allow for the blood of a son or daughter of a Lankan mother to be spilled again on our beautiful nation.

    Mr. Jeyaraj it is in the hands of writers like you to educate the general public to get rid of there racist attitudes and to make people think what they can do to make a better future and living conditions for everybody in sri lanka.

  161. Jeevan says:

    Prabhakaran lost the struggle the day he confined his confidence in violence as a means to an end. While I acknowledge and understand the legitimate concerns behind the struggle for succession, its not something I will ever believe in or accept as a realistic, fare and viable solution for the entirety of my country and her people. Had Prabhakaran struggle been the antithesis of what it was, i.e. had he used his gift within a pretext of an unwavering confidence and faith in a principled nonviolent struggle, I am convinced a state of EELAM might have already been established.

    There is no question about struggling to establish a context where all citizens in the country are able to exercise their fundamental freedoms and enjoy social and economic justice equally. It may sound a unrealistic utopia, but this utopia has never been more possible.

    Prabhakaran was both the birth and the death of the concept of EELAM.

  162. Vijey Jayalath says:

    DBS, do you think SL govt will let you enter sri lanka because you seem to have so much affinity with the LTTE, they might think you are an LTTER itself

    But the LTTE diaspora accuse me of having “affinity” with the govt no?what to do?….DBSJ

  163. L Nathan says:

    I am a south indian Tamil woman, aged 54, now living in Pretoria. I have cried so very much as a result of the Thalivar’s death. I still wear only black saree, only with black or white undergraments. I will do so for next 3 months. I told my son if has a son, give him the name Veulpillai Piripharan – my Son God. To me he never died – he will come back

  164. Murugesu Raman says:

    I am a strong Tamil activist in Melbourne, Australia. I know after Prabha’s death some of our disapora colleagues went on mayhem. This is wrong. I am particularly sorry about the 2 Sinhalese students who were attacked with acid in Sydney and the knife attack on 2 more Sinhalese in Pennant Hills. DBS, please advise the Tamil Diaspora to maintain the Tamil dignity, they have done many unwanted attacks on Sinhala people and institutions in western countries. I know London Buddhist Temple was twice attacked. DBS please use your good influence to calm things down’ it is also bad for us Tamils worldwide.

  165. Murugesu Raman says:

    Thamilselvan’s role in the decline and fall of LTTE is immense…………DBSJ
    Please clarify as I am intrigued. I thought Prabha loved Thamilselvan!?
    I think the real start of LTTE downfall happenned after the death of Anton Bala?

  166. dilshan F says:

    Dear DBSJ,

    I read your piece about VP and sincerely got bored halfway. So honestly I cannot really say anything about what you wrote.

    As for me he was a murderous srilankan who brought disappointment, death and disaster to as many or more than those who suffered in the tsunami.

    I might as well read about hitler and his childhood or the many who ran the concentration camps and butchered the jews.

    I have many moderate tamils writing in this column still after the still elusive eealm. I find no quarrel with them.

    As for me I love the new found peace and wish a speedy recovery for all those who suffered be it tigers, slarmy or just innocent men women and children.

    I also want to tell my tamil brothers and sisters that i never carried any bias or hatred towards them.

    For those who write about the concentration camps run by the govt. they will have to eat their words the same way they ate when VP was pronounced alive when he was dead.

    Thank you for being so honest Dilshan.Just curious , did you read it in full…….DBSJ

  167. Das says:

    In my view EROS Balakumar was a great and genuine freedom fighter.
    EROS tried their best to bring all the Tamil groups together and they had great solidarity with Singhalese and Muslims.

    When LTTE killed all the other Tamil group members, Balakumar without any choice and to save other EROS members he surrender himself and asked other members leave the country.

    LTTE used him for their own propaganda throughout his life and never let him to come forward.

    Sadly now no one talk about him and forgotten soul.

  168. Ruchira says:

    Everyone has to remember one thing. The killing has stopped, especially of innocent civilians. Whatever you say about VP, you have to admit that his activities would have resulted in more civilian deaths.

    Let there be no more deaths of innocent civilians in Sri lanka, whether Sinhalese., tamil or Muslim. An entire generation of youth has been lost for nothing.

    While one can admire VP’s determination he was not a realist. India would have overrrun any separate Tamil Eelam, simply because she cannot loose Tamil Nadu . It was all futile because of India , even if Sri lanka had been defeated.

    let all this killing stop. the world is global and multicultural and all the rest of the world will think only barbarians inhabit Sri Lanka who cannot stop killing each other

  169. Nik Siva says:

    Great article DBSJ.

    Its good when people from our country can write so well and show proper information.

    But by reading comments on the bottom, you can see peoples hatred and irrelevant comments. No wonder Sri Lanka will never have real peace with Tamils and Sinhalese.

    DBSJ anna, keep up the good work

  170. Sujatha says:

    Hope you know that Kollywood is gearing up to make a movie on Praba with PrakashRaj on the main role. The Xhe picture infact looks perfect and one can see how PrakashRaj will be ideal for the role.
    DBSJ, may be you need to elaborate a bit more on the ‘romance’ – we need some ‘good-stuff’ for two duet songs minimum.
    The ‘holy’ colours and the crying scean already seems straight out of a Tamil movie..
    Watch out the kollywood scrip writers may be after you.. I hear that you are one big movie-buff… : )

    I think Prakash Raj is too tall to be Prabhakaran but we can cut him down to size…..DBSJ

  171. Gamage Banda says:

    Ummba wareeng Lanka wata…..thennam podi pottu oluvatta…..

    “Ummba”?”Thennam”? “Pottu”? “oluvatta”? Tho “gamage Banda” neme lamaya……DBSJ

  172. Che Guevera says:

    When Shivaji fought the Mughals it started with insurgency. You cannot fight a state power without guerilla tactics – that does not make one a terrorist. We should salute a brave man who has gone down. IPKF had handed over LTTE people to Sri Lanka who then executed them. That was the beginning of the LTTE turning anti India. That they stand up with dignity and dont take shit does not make them an enemy. We lose a thousand soldiers at Kargil and yet dont take the war to the enemy. Not everyone is as spineless as that. I am proud to share my Indian nationality with the brave Tamil race. That Prabhakaran refused even good peace deals is what makes him deserve his end. But he is still the man who created one of the most respected and disciplined non state fighting units in the world, and did not silently slip away (lets face it, he could have if he wanted to). He remains one of our boys who took some wrong decisions, but if nothing else we should salute the bravery of those who have perished fighting for a just cause. Hat’s off and salutations!

    Praba is the MODERN DAY RAJA RAJA CHOLA FOR THE TAMILS. He gave them a VOICE else Tamils would have been in oblivion.

  173. ardneham says:

    Following up Comment No. 143 – the next Elections
    for Presidency will be the climax of V:P: strategy -
    the end of MR Bro.regime.

    It is strange that a “govt.servant” in the kind of
    Gota issues statements to arrest “Parlimentarians”
    and impunity allows him to do so.

  174. Mavady says:

    I think many of the readers not catching properly that what you try to say through this writing. There are few people who try to get advantage on his death want to show him as alive and refused pay last respect for his leader. I think by the way you write about his life you paid the tribute on behalf of us all to the man who fought for our people more than three decade; There is no doubt that Prabakaran was a powerful symbol of Tamil armed struggle. But unfortunately that power turned into Terror. Thats where he started to dig his own grave. He is the man with displene, dedication and determination but his dictatorship did not deliver any good for our people. As leader he fails to listen and consider some useful advice. He denies by force all the alternative voices and kills them as Traitors.

    This is sad to see this situation of our people who have had untold suffering from both Government and LTTE. Mostly poor and middle class people from Sinhalese and Tamils have affected too much of this war while richer people fled the country and secure themselves in the western countries. Indirectly, some vocal section of the Diaspora Tamils also responsible for this bitter end. Because these people who just blindly support LTTE whatever they do. They never protest against LTTE whenever they kill innocent people, other militant groups and politicians. They never try to unite various militant groups together in amicable way. They never felt sorry when LTTE throw Muslims from North. There were so many brutal and obvious blunders committed by LTTE but they never ever condemn LTTEs blunder. They should have guided LTTE towards the right direction towards viable solution. People who were living in the LTTE control area cant speak out. There was a rule of the gun. Even though many of us who live overseas clearly understood that our goal is unwinnable and unrealistic to achieve we kept quite except few or we kept support him to carry on. Tamils in the western countries had chance to criticize LTTEs wrong approach. Because of this silence attitude encourage the LTTE to expand their authoritarian culture and militaristic structure over Tamils who living inside and outside of Elam. LTTE gradually built up their terror net work and infrastructure through some prominent Tamil people in overseas. When western countries decided to take seriously the danger posed by LTTE, and they proscribed the group. SL Government now successfully completed the task with the support of the whole world by massacred thousands innocent lives. As Government they fail to protect to their own citizens. These murders also to be furnished. Tamil community should create strong political voice from the Diaspora ( Not from the white collar LTTE activists ) who can genuinely address the plight of Lankan Tamils. Tamil community should think wisely and demand for a viable solution which can be accepted by the 21st century society. This is the time whole Sinhala community unites together and willing to share the power with Tamil community. If they fail to do that now there will be no such a country call Sri-Lanka in the world map in the future.

  175. Selva says:

    Dear Jeyaraj
    My stance is Vp is a dictator, who never allow any democratic ideology to be blossomed among tamils. From Doraiappa to Kadiragahmar, my god how many in between.
    I agree with your artical of “strategic miscalculations”. The point we left behind is by allowing ltte to be crushed he allowed SL government to re evolve the basis of power devolution. LTTe shuld have bargain while they were powerful. All peace negotiations took place because SLG thought ltte could not be defeated. LTTE have neglected the real aspirations of tamils. VP is nothing but a bullshit.
    But now the reality is deferent.
    Dear Jeyaraj, Now it’s time for you to start new dialog. How to go forward, let the past just for experience, we must go forward as singhalees, tamilas, srilankans.and develop this country.
    Thanks
    Selva

  176. Ranjan says:

    DBS,
    It would be nice to have a capability to search your blog for comments and commentors. You have so many people responding to what you write, such a function would be very useful to see what a single individual has said on different blogs.

  177. Kamal says:

    Did VP surrender? Are you sure about his death? How do you know? The body they show was it VP’s?

    KP on behalf of LTTE has accepted VP’s death.Why are tiger supporters not paying homage?……DBSJ

  178. azdak says:

    Dear David

    I am a Sinhalese living in canada. This is an interesting account of Prabhakaran, mostly because it shows how a very ordinary youngster could become one that believes in an armed uprising as a response to factors that could have been removed in advance by the government with a vision.

    I always blamed the uniformed security personnel who “marched on the onion beds in Jaffna to exhibit their power” for the beginning of an armed uprising in the North. I heard that SL government is intending to set up large scale army camps in the north again. The contribution made towards creating and strengthening the armed uprising by those camps that were there in the past and the corrupt police officers, who were very often sent to the North on punishment after committing an offense in the south should be taken into account. It is an army of committed, honest public offices and investors that we need in the North now.

    Regarding the accusation that you are trying to glorify the Prabhakaran: if the same article was written in Sinhala by a Sinhalese and published in a Sinhala newspaper no Sinhalese would accuse the author for glorifying. Come on people try to think afresh and learn from the mistakes of the past. It is a must if you do not want to see any Wijeweeras and Prabhakarans in future Sri Lanka. Extremists on both sides owe that duty to the future generations.

  179. Francis Antony says:

    As you are aware, Velupillai Prabhakaran was not a person who could say he experienced any of the so called problems of Tamils as he was a school drop-out who was engaged in smuggling and did not have any sense to understand a thing about other peoples suffering. (He showed it throughout his life).

    One can never believe what you have given as VP?s history ? his intellectuality is true. He had been a fan of Clint Eastwood and cannot say he had been fascinated with any of the high valued things / men you have mentioned. If he had been a follower of those, how could he become such a brute? Oh! What an insult you did to those late leaders whom you have mentioned in your article, by putting their names together with VP.

    How can he become a Saviour of a nation and of a people (Tamils) with a great culture and intelligence? If someone accepts that, it is a great insult to the Tamil Nation.

    To make you happy do you want me to say VP never read books ?…….DBSJ

  180. Singhe says:

    Mr. Jeyaraj,

    With respect, to your response to comment #91:

    “Multi – ethnic, like – minded persons have to keep on struggling with the unfinished task of nation building.

    The goal and vision should be for a United, Pluralist,Egalitarian “NEW” Sri Lanka”

    This is also the type of Sri Lanka that I envision, and I’m sure that there are many who share that dream. But everything I read these days makes it appear as though we’re moving further and further away from this.

    I’ve always believed that Tamil and Sinhalese extremism are two sides of the same coin. But since the defeat of the LTTE, the government appears to be going in the “wrong” direction (for me). What if too much has happened for us to ever go back to a multicultural Sri Lanka? In your opinion, can Tamil and other ethnicities still thrive in the present environment?

    If significant political powers are devolved to the regions and Sri Lanka takes on more of a bi-cultural landscape, will Sri Lankan Tamils choose to move to those areas where they can live in that culture, or will they remain in predomoniantly Sinhalese areas thereby re-affirming MR’s “no minorities” policy.

    Thank you.

  181. Anonymous says:

    ” obsessed with cleanliness”
    My aunt houses were occupied by LTTE in 1990. Those houses were spotless and the compound was well maintained and spotless.

    Once I used one of the public toilets built by LTTE near tiger/army check points in vanni. I was amazed by the cleanliness. One hundred times better than Katunayake airport toilets.

  182. Balaji says:

    I think this piece is to laugh all the way to the bank. Feed what people want to read. I’m sure expats read DM too.

    Every man’s life is eventful and we can write a piece like this for almost anyone who has walked on this planet. But calling Prabakaran, the vibrant symbol of Tamil struggle is an insult to the sacrifices of so many people.

    If you want to read about a ‘Vibrant symbol’, try reading Che Guevara.

    DBSJ RESPONDS:

    VP was a powerful, vibrant symbol of Sri Lankan Tamil armed struggle. Period.

    Also you are most welcome to write an eventful account of anyone you want. What’s stopping you?

  183. Gopi Siva Lingam says:

    DBSJ,
    Thanks for your article. It is essential to record the history in its original form, instead of letting the victors mislead the future generations.
    By reading you for many years, I am aware of your views about VP. Here is my view, if you care to know:
    I see VP as a rare kind of being that defines us Homo Sapiens, people who take a cause of others and unconditionally pursue it. For me, it is a virtue. Of course I cannot justify the forcible child recruitment as I would not want my children to die, hence I could not expect others to sacrifice theirs. Yet, I can understand how VP, a man of high discipline, justified such acts to himself. It is documented in Adel Balasingam’s “Will to Freedom”. He thought that to avoid the future generations of Tamil suffering in the hands of Sinhala chauvinism indefinitely, his generation had to make some hard choices. He (and his wife) were willing to make the ultimate sacrifice as parents. Unfortunately for him, majority of us Tamils do not think like him – to our own peril and the peril of our future generations. It is well documented how the Allies sometimes used conscription of under aged in the Great Wars (both 1 and 2). I believe they will do it again should the situation present itself again. We Tamils are a more selfish bunch and I fear we will pay for it for many generations to come. For instance, had we resisted the western invasions of the past 5 centuries, we would still have the Jaffna Kingdom and our generation would have lived in peace. The subjugation of earlier generations still causing unimaginable suffering 5 centuries later. Imagine if Ellalan won the war and killed Dutta Gemunu all those years ago?!

    I believe one’s judgment of VP is inextricably intertwined with their judgment of Sinhala chauvinism. If one sees the Sinhala chauvinists as unconditionally barbaric, then they see VP as a hero. If they see the Sinhala chauvinist as ‘some what brutal’ then they see VP as a man who took the Tamil cause too far. I belong to the first group and you belong to the second. Am I right in my judgment?

    No you are not right in your “judgement”………DBSJ

  184. smahen says:

    After all these happnings , Ghandehian struggle, political,Judicial and armed struggle ,genocide by Gotabaya,Sarath ,Mahinda and co( Douglas,Karuna) ect with the help of impotent UN/IC. Do you honestely think Tamils can live with dignity and equality In unitary Srilanka?

  185. shanthi krish says:

    Sri lankan imigration authorities are going to charge thalaivar’s parents for illegal entry. The fact that thalaivar was a second generation malayali from kerala is probably why vaiko & company supported him so much although they sacrificed thalaivar mercilessly at the altar of the indian elections finally. If any tamil is planning to start another eelam war with the help of south indian politicians in the future he should have his head examined. He might as well walk upto the nearest SLA camp & request to be executed right now. It’ll save a lot of pain.

    thalaivar can be considered an alien who tried to lay claim to a land his father entered illegally. A true south indian invader. History has just repeated itself. the so called paranoid sinhala chauvinistic fears have not been unfounded after all.

    As long as the tamils hold the core belief that sri lanka is their homeland instead of tamil nadu (meaning land of tamils) there will never be a solution. Charges of sinhala discrimination, chauvinism & federal state solutions are only temporary vehicles to gradually get to a separate state. After all why should tamils settle for anything less than what they think is completely theirs?

    An ethnic group simply cannot have two homelands. The very idea itself is ridiculous. It’s like the british community living in france saying that british originated from france & claiming a part of france. Therefore either Tamil nadu or Sri Lanka is not the tamil homeland. So which is the tamil home land & which is not ? Sri lanka or tamil nadu (meaning land of tamils)? The answer is obvious. It really would have been hilarious if it wasn’t so tragic.

    Blood thirsty politicians like vaiko should be ashamed to promote the north east sri lanka as the tamil home land while living in tamil nadu. It only exposes their inferiority complex towards their indian rulers. They should be sued at the indian high courts barring them from laying claim to any part of tamil nadu or not to demand anything since they admit they are alien to tamil nadu. It seems all tamils living outside north east sri lanka do not consider their domiciled homes as their true homes even while enjoying the fantastically generous governement benefits. Specially in the west.

    South indians, colombo, canadians, malaysians, singaporeans, british, french, australian, south african & all other tamils et al seem miserable living in their respective countries. All of them claim north east sri lanka under thalaivar. None of them claim tamil nadu. But the hilarious part is that none of them would have ever lived in eelam under thalaivar. They’d rather live in colombo under mahinda. This whole setup is so fake & such a mental confusion that it was destined to end in utter chaos.

    That was exactly what happened.

  186. The80Factor says:

    “Enough Sri of this empty rhetoric.60 million Tamils boiling indeed. The Tamil Nadu bogey is a bogus.Understand that please”
    __________________________________________________

    Let me say, I couldn’t agree with you more on your above comment.

    How self wish creatures are the Tamil leaders in Tamil Nadu who wants us to keep fighting for their own benefits? It makes me sick.

    They have failed to save our people getting killed in thousands, yet managed to be on top of their game spreading lies about how Piraaharan being alive and that his “RESURRECTION?” is eminent?

    Dear Tamil people,

    first, please ignore these bastards for they have blood in their hands. Turn your eyes and try trusting the moderate Sinhalese instead for they have a better understanding of our pains than the useless TN politicians. (No offense to our Tamil people in Tamil Nadu)

    No more support to LTTE or to their fake leaders unless they want to address the issues by mixing with the mainstream.

    We need to wake up, DON’T KEEP DREAMING as these idiots are still manipulating you to get what they want.

    The quicker we establish a new leadership the sooner we can get to have our rights back and live along with all the Sri Lankans.

    Dear DBSJ,

    PLEASE SHED MORE LIGHTS INTO OUR DIASPORA TO CHANGE AND GET READY TO FACE THE NEXT STORM.

  187. R Maran says:

    Comments 99- Kingley

    Let me share my experience.

    I was taken away twice by EPRLF on my work to KKS from Point Pedro. I was sent to the TNA (Tamil National Army) training camp. I refused to undergo the military training. (I already had my training in 1983 which they were not aware).

    There were around 30 youths refused to train themselves on the face of threats and intimidation. We were told, we will be send to another training camp which is considered as one of worst training camps. As my father was working for Jaffna Kacheri holding third high ranking position, he worked closely with Muruganesan of EPRLF who is Jaffna administrative coordinator, Muruganesan intervened. I was sent home in both instances.

    When I returned home, my worst fear was for LTTE. There were some suspicion among LTTE sympathisers, I have strong connection with EPRLF, thats why I was allowed to return in both instances.

    Not everyone were lucky, after few months IPKF left, almost all these Tamil youths were massacred in hundreds by LTTE. No mercy was shown to even surrendered innocent youths.

    Recently, in an interview Karuna claimed that he killed 1800 Tamils youths within 12 days in East. VP was very pleased with Karuna , rewarded him handsomely for these crimes. Now, he became Minister of National Integration which is a joke.

  188. Kejan says:

    Terrorist and freedom fighter or resistance fighter etc are in the minds of a person or government. It is well said that one persons perception of terrorist will be a freedom fighter for other person. Public should think about the root cause of all these definitions and try to avoid situation which gives birth to either freedom fighter or terrorist.

    For eg. if British would not have captured Indian which is not theres, then there was no need of freedom from it or terrorist in the eyes of British. Similarly if Human follow the Almighty’s rule of natural Justice for all irrespective of class, religion, caste, colour etc, then this world be a beautiful place for living. Justice need to be done for all parties, whether Srilankan, Tamils, Christians, Hindus, Muslims, Palestinians, Chechens, Indonesian etc. else we cannot have peace and always will be enemies of one another. Now the stupid Bush has gone and India has selected a Secular and non Communal non fascist regime, it is high time to bring peace to India, Srilanka and to the World in general by attending to the root causes of all the disputes through real Justice without any bias towards, religion, caste etc.

  189. Saroj Matthews says:

    LTTE was created by India for its own interest
    now its decimated for its own interest. When these regional powers stop playing politics in the neighbouring countries, everything will be all right.
    Diplomacy – The word i hate!

    The poor peoples blood is the field of poor diplomacy, its idiotic. Irresponsible Indian diplomats are fooled by the present political expansion of China in the Indian ocean region.

    I am ashamed that Gandi’s India is part of the bloodsheding in Srilanka.

  190. Johnny's view says:

    1) The Tigers fought for 25 years with all the might they could muster, it wasnt enough. Now the Srilankan army has newer more powerful allies, so do the Tamil diaspora want to start another 25 year innings of death,destruction and isolation

    2) The LTTE’s was never a freedom struggle in the true sense.In the land controlled by LTTE for 25 years they had their own courts, police, everything but they never had a democratic governing council because it was a terrorist organisation.There was only one absolute power and that was Prabhakaran. Those Tamils who lived there but did not agree with him were executed. This is not a freedom struggle.

    3) Look at the wonderful opportunity this is for the future of this nation. The government now is
    much more sensitive to the issues of minorities and the minorities can with the help of the government and the tamil diaspora make it a land of paradise.People will no longer board a bus fearing bombs, shopping in bazaars can be a happy experience once again.

    People in the north can have access to internet and the only internet connection in north need not be the headquarters of the LTTE… The possibilities are exciting and many , let us build on them.

  191. Sarath says:

    You are invited to Sri Lanka, and are pleased to offer you free brain surgery like the one given to VP.

    Alternatively, we could arrange this service through the embassy, as free of cost.

    Are you saying you split Prabhakaran’s skull open you war criminal?…..DBSJ

  192. Sarath says:

    You are invited to Sri Lanka, and are pleased to offer you free brain surgery like the one given to VP.

    Alternatively, we could arrange this service through the embassy, at free of cost.

    Are you saying Sri Lankan missions abroad split the skulls of Tamils?…….DBSJ

  193. Mahulchandran. c.Spencer says:

    Keep up the infotainment and psychotherapic medium and platform for all the once and future denizens of SL going as long as you can without any course correction. Today no comment is purely original as all contaminate and influence each other from nebulous clouds of thought and feelings.

    My father had 50 acre piece of land in Vellanmulivaikal that I commenced visiting as an 8 year old and at times lived with farmer named Kasinathan. I have many and varied memories of walking to this land by the gravel road, jungle and coast including some near confrontation with a man like chimpanzee and a wild buffalo.

    Least ever thought then that this area near the Nanthikadal and Vellanmulivaikal would become something far worse than the apparent American Custer’s like last stand that gobbled tens of thousands of lives.

    This had its recent roots in the convenient and comfortable British exit from Ceylon and the GOI misjudging of the psychopathic character of (T)VP to let his movement grow as a humongous weed the world over to an overwhelming majority of people having been ploughed, irrigated and fertilized by Singhalese Buddhist Chauvinism that counter pointed with a very similar virulent Tamil semi-literate racism. Hope the moderates prevail and MR doesn’t become a worse VP.

  194. Ganeshkumar says:

    Dear DBSJ Anna,
    I thought you was a neutralized journo. However, it seems the recent days you are backing on Eelam struggle, rather than focusing on a solution. It is very clear that, most of your commentators are expatriates and diaspora. We should listen to these people, that is because they are playing vital role. As you mentioned in your previous comments, that you was born in Colombo. My question is that;

    1. Did you ever came across discrimination against Tamils in Colombo?

    2. How come so much of Jaffna students could enter into Universities such as Peradeniya / Moratuwa / Panadura / Colombo, even into colleges such like Ananda / Nalanda / Hindu / St. Antony / Vivekananda?

    3. 1983 riots escalated in unmannered way, that panicked most of our Tamil people who was born and lived in Colombo amongst our Sinhala brotherhoods. Who initiated this problem? Do you know how much my Sinhala brotherhood helped us? A person named Morris (Sinhala) who scarified his own life protecting my Tamil neighbours in Kotchikade, and later was shot dead by paramilitary. However, as I spoke to my parents today (30th May, 2009) In Colombo, the situation seems to be fine. Yet, I’m pretty much sure that there are LTTE cadres inside Colombo to blow-up Colombo harbour, thus causing major impact on Sri Lankan economics. But this plan also will foil.

    4. Our major problem in SL (between Tamils and Sinhalese) is communications and the language. To be honest with you, when I spoke to my mom today, she was sadden by the fall of VP, that is because of her Mom is from Jaffna, although my Mom was born in Negombo. So, this shows us some kind of bloodthirsty.

    5. When VP got married he changed his law that anyone who exercised in deformed LTTE for about 5 can marry. How flexibility is that? He never ever tried to protect his own people rather than keeping the civilians and his own cadres as his protective belt. Period.

    6. Now the Eelam is over (however Tamil diaspora are not satisfied yet!) We need to find a solution. It is possible to contribute something to SL person like you DBSJ. Sure for sure, you must enter into politics rather than focusing on this blog. Your overwhelming comments shows my inner thought.. However, I have sent you my email, but, didn’t get response from you. Hope one day I will receive some reply from you.

    Anna call pannunga.. If not please provide your phone number anna

    Natpudan,
    -Ganesh.

  195. Dexter says:

    In everything VP has done, am enthralled on the names he gave his children and why did so. He could have at least sent little Bala away. Perhaps last moments-what happened and what he thought may never come to light;and that will be still mystic about him.

  196. Stephen Jones says:

    Did you ever came across discrimination against Tamils in Colombo?
    1983 riots escalated in unmannered way, that panicked most of our Tamil people who was born and lived in Colombo amongst our Sinhala brotherhoods. Who initiated this problem?

    How much are hotel rooms on this planet you are living on? Sounds like quite a nice place to visit for a holiday.

  197. peace says:

    Regarding Sulochana,s comment #159.The need of the hour is making every one understand that we are all humans no matter what our cast creed race religion or ethnicity is. This understanding at grass root level will go a long way in changing the minds of politicians and people at power including clergy ,military and paramilitary forces.May god (By what ever name you call him/her to pray or even if you are a nonbeliever)bless you endevoers toward this goal.

  198. R.S.Ganeshan says:

    DBSJ
    Viewers of today ‘s NDTV telecast of ‘Walk the
    Talk’ interview of MR by Shekhar Gupta of the Indian Express, may not have missed the significance of his reply with regard to his knowledge of the date of Prabakaran’s death. He denied that he did not know of it in Quatar and that he knew it only on his return to Sri Lanka. Rupavahini TV showed him kissing the Katunayake airport tarmac. Was it the first time he has done so, after returning from abroad?. Further, what is intriguing is on the 17th May crackers and fireworks celebrations had commenced in Sri Lanka. Beside that, MR had been reported as saying to a gathering in a middle east country that ‘the LTTE terrorist’s have been finally crushed’. Then, is it possible that BADA’s post #134 has an iota of truth in it ?

    No…DBSJ

  199. C de Alwis says:

    I think it’s a too long “eulogy” for a mass murderer.

    I dont think you know what an “eulogy” is……….DBSJ

  200. Ganeshkumar says:

    // How much are hotel rooms on this planet you are living on? Sounds like quite a nice place to visit for a holiday.//

    Why not?, My tiny Island better known as Ceylon once upon a time known as a Pearl of the Indian Ocean, now better known as Tear of Indian Ocean. But, do not worry, there are plenty of safe hotels available. Having said that, consider from east coast to west coast. I would prefer Panandura beach hotels or Negombo beach hotels (Especially Brown Beach Hotel). Walk along it’s narrow road and you will find the different.

    -Ganesh.

  201. SHAKILA BALA says:

    Sir,

    I don’t agree with the death of prabaharan as you described. I beleive he has escaped from the war zone well before.

    I understand that he was a stubborn leader, but, in this situation in order pursue further he would of gotten out of there.

    If you believe Defence picture of Prabaharan is the actual Prabaharan and you write your analyze based on the Defence’s story, I totally disagree.

    untill I see a real picture of Prabaharan dead, I would not accept this death at all!!!!

    Current situation is Army cannot prove he is dead, LTTE cannot prove he alive.

    Dead or Alive lots of questions will arise? Death was not proven properly thats why alive questions have rise?

    Once again I believe HE IS ALIVE!!!!!!

    VP is No more. Believe what you want to believe.Dont let me stop you all…….DBSJ

  202. Ian says:

    Looking forward to seeing articles on Soosai, Jeyam, Pottu Amman, Sornam, Bhanu & Ramesh.

    Why?………DBSJ

  203. Ian says:

    Regardless of what people say, he was a legend. If Rajapakse do give equal rights to Tamils, that will be because of VP.

    All chances of getting equal rights for Tamils were foiled mainly by VP…….DBSJ

  204. human says:

    My comment is irrelevant to your article, but I don’t care. I only think and write about people.

    My friend’s family:

    A family of 5 ( 3 children under 10) with their grand parents decided to escape from no fire zone. While they were crossing the lagoon two of their children and grand parents got separated and sent back to no fire zone by tigers. Few days later, grand parents and two children got injured by army shelling when they were waiting to collect the milk powder. Later one child died without adequate treatment. Eventually grandparents with another surviving injured child managed to flee. However, they all ended up in 3 different camps. This family never got involved in tigers, they lived in vanni without choice due to their work-government servants.

  205. shankar says:

    comment 163- L.Nathan

    i hope you dont self immolate yourself.
    could you also please tell me so far what you have contributed to the tamil struggle other than the black saree.

  206. georgethebushpig says:

    Having read many of the comments I believe several people seem to be stuck in a logically false argument. People are trying hard to find ?equivalence? in actions where no equivalence exists. A crime committed by whoever still remains a crime.

    Just because VP committed crimes does not allow the Government to do the same. ?Crime? is an unlawful act. Killing civilians is such an act. The attempt to absolve VP of the crimes he committed by referring to the crimes the Government did, or trying to justify the Government?s recent actions as being o.k. given VP?s crimes is a fake argument. This is a logical fallacy ? the affirmation of one and the denial of the other is a contradiction!

    At this point in time it is the Government that is under the microscope and so it should be. The Government should be accountable to the people and held to a higher standard. If Mahinda?s victory speech to Parliament is to be taken seriously then there are only Sri Lankans and ?no minorities?. If this is the case, Sri Lankans that ?happen to be Tamil?, as well as, all other Sri Lankans who have a sense of justice should have the right to an impartial inquiry into what exactly happened to the civilians over the last few months as a result of the war with the Tigers. This is a necessity if we are to put to rest this abhorrent chapter. Just because the USA, Britain and Israel get away with impunity does not absolve the Sri Lankan government of its responsibility to its own citizens.

    Here?s where the contradiction really comes to the fore. Those who argue that the USA, Britain and Israel have committed war crimes and have not been charged are in fact right. But their call should be for those as well as all others who commit war crimes to be held to account. Just because VP used Tamil civilians as a human shield does not give the Government the right to barter those civilians as collateral, especially when there were other alternatives. If those people who continue to talk about the West?s hypocrisy as an excuse for letting the Government off the hook, they should realise that they are in fact accepting in more ways than one that the Government did in fact commit war crimes.

    Very well said……DBSJ

  207. Ganeshkumar says:

    //All chances of getting equal rights for Tamils were foiled mainly by VP…….DBSJ//

    DBSJ anna, your one sentence is more than enough and it explains everything. However we are equally treated in south, but when it comes to North, it is a high time for us to corporate with government. Arm struggle will not lead us to anywhere. We should NOT allow the history to repeat. Our concern should focus not only IDP’s but also other poor people. Let stand as a human and help our brothers and sisters. A dollar by each diaspora should be more than enough to bring up that tiny Island. And, there is a speculation that there will be another Tsunami attack during July 2009
    http://www.prh.noaa.gov/ptwc/?region=3

    And I hope it is a rumor. Am really tired on all of these devastation.

    BTW: There are good cops and bad cops, which one are dealing with? Onnume puriyala (Could not understand)

    -Ganesh.

  208. dilshan F says:

    Dear DBSJ,

    I have now read the whole article. I wonder – why do people write is it to convey ones thoughts or just to record or as a matter of interest.

    On this I would say that you are just trying to give an honest historical background to VP. Even in the bible there is reference to the devil – it does not glorify him. So is this – perhaps to find out why and maybe give courage to ordinary tamils to be like him? – god forbid.

    In a way i know you because I too am a thomian and I would know you due to that. Even if some of your articles are pro tamil it should not cause concern or fear and branding. that goes the same for others.

    friends can agree to disagree in doing so they will not hurt each other.

    Long live the tamils and long live the sinhalese, May all communities learn to live with each others faults.

  209. Bandara Atapattu says:

    Dear Mr. Jeyaraj,

    now that you have written 2 comprehensive articles about Theepan and Prabakaran of the LTTE, we would like to see an article or two of key players from the other camp, such as the Rajapaksha Brothers and Sarath Fonseka.

    Any such plans?

    Bandara Atapattu

  210. pravin says:

    in the past 2 weeks,only things that makes me believe with heavy heart that the great tamil warrior ”thamby” may be no more is mr dbsj articles..there is no word called slightly dead or slightly alive..i leave it to ‘TIME ‘ to confirm and persuade me one hundred percent..

    now ‘THE TIMES’ has told the western world about the 20,000 massacred tamil civilians.it is the greatest tragedy for tamils probably of this era..my sincere thanks to the times..

    my opinion is that the tamil national struggle should not and will not stop.now the ball is in sinhala court.if they by some miracle change their mindset and treat tamils as equal citizens ,this struggle will cease over months.

    but if the discrimination continues,there is no doubt that the struggle will continue.the liberation struggle is like a feeling .if a leader lies someone else will replace that void to carry on the struggle.already there are hundreds of fighters in the jungles in north east..

    the fact that thalaivar didnt change or gave up his principle will inspire other leaders..after all they fought and died along with the people they cherished above their life.and no one can get away after killing 20.000 tamil civilians[may be another 20,000 with amputated limbs]..

    let me see what those srilankan tamils who criticised the tigers all their lives are going to do now..will they be able to bring about equal rights..if they lose ..then there will be no post ltte era as told by mr.nadesan…some weeks back..

  211. Dhananjaya says:

    Response to 203

    Well said DBSJ.

  212. Kumaran says:

    DBSJ,
    You have highlighted the important details of Prabaharans childhood experiences which have contributed in his desire to build and lead LTTE as a well disciplined military force fighting rigorously for freedom of Tamils. True he was very firm in his objective of creating an Independent homeland for oppressed Tamils. I do not agree with certain comments which accuse you of glorifying all his acts; As you believe that he has died, you have highlighted certain factual details including good characteristics as you know or heard of him.

    My opinion regarding Bahavad Geethai is it is not merely an advise given by Krishna to Arjuna when he was reluctant fighting his relatives and Grues asking him to continue to fight for the cause irrespective of who is in the enemy force. It was written in Maha Baratha that: the principles of Geethai were preached in that instance. When you literally interpret the Karnan song Maranathai Enni by Seerkali, it appears that Bahavad Geethai actually preaches violence/killing as a means of achieving your objective as you are only killing a persons body and not his soul as there is no death to the souls. I am sure that Kavingar Kannadasan would have translated that portion of Sanskrit slogan from Bahavad Geethai properly. Was this the true intention of Geethai? Is it possible that the teachings of Bahavad Geethai and Maha Baratha events are totally different from each other? Can some Spiritual leader clarify this?

  213. andy says:

    Ultimately 2 people are responsible for the plight of the Sri Lankan Tamils who could have altered the course if they had the vision.
    1) Sir Pon Ramanathan,
    2) V.Prabakaran,
    Thanks

  214. wesley says:

    In comment 185, Shanthi Krish says : Sri lankan imigration authorities are going to charge thalaivar’s parents for illegal entry. The fact that thalaivar was a second generation malayali from kerala …….

    Today’s Nation.lk paper has a different take on this:

    The Army Intelligence on a tip off given by Tamil civilians, had arrested Prabhakaran`s father Thiruvekkadam Velupillai, 85, and mother Velupillai Parvatiwhile, 78, while taking refuge in a relief village in Vavuniya.

    Born in Malaysia, Velupillai had later taken up residence in Velvetithurai. He had started his career as a postal employee, and retired from public service as a land officer at the Mullaitivu Kachcheri.
    Prabhakaran. was the youngest of Velupillai`s four children. Prabha’s parents who had fled to India in the 80s, had returned home during the ceasefire in 2003.
    The house Prabhakaran resided in his last days in Wellamullavaikkal, has been identified by the troops. He had been holed up in a bunker built inside this house.

    Prabhakaran`s wife Madivadini and her mother too had managed to disguise their identities in the exodus of civilians to Vavuniya. However, Army intelligence had later identified them.

    Army Commander General Fonseka says, “Prabhakaran`s parents have to be questioned.
    But they are too old to be prosecuted and punished ‘

    http://www.nation.lk/2009/05/31/militarym.htm

  215. shankar says:

    i was reading an article that gave some information on what is happening internationally and i thoght of sharing some of it .

    1. the greatest asset that srilanka has is its strategic location. 70 per cent of world traffic in petroleum products and half of the worlds container traffic passes through the indian ocean.

    2. the us has linked the release of the IMF loan to access to the camps for international agencies.

    3. like in the case of myanmar and sudan, if the US steps up pressure, china may come to srilanka’s help.

    4. china is building a US dollar 1 billion port in Hambantota, that it may eventually use as a refulling and docking station for its navy, as it protects its sea lanes in the indian ocean.

    5. chinese aid for srilanka touched US dollat 1 billlion last year. it is the no 1 foreign donor overtaking japan.

    6.china has supplied ammunition and ordnance and also gifted 6 F7 fighter jets last year.

    7. india views chinese inroads into srilanka with disquiet.

    8.india has given substantial political, military and economic support to srilanka. if india tries to roll back these china will simply step in.

    9. srilanka plays the game beautifully. colombo first gives india its wishlist of weapons. if india declines it promptly aproaches china. this happened for the hambantota port too.

    10. the west finds rajapakshe getting too close to china for their comfort.

    11. on china’s part however the fuelling station in hambantota becomes vital for optimally using the series of port facilities that it has lined up in pakistan, bangladesh and myanmar.

    12. in addition to securing its energy supplies, the naval presence in srilanka becomes invaluable for china if the planned canal across the Isthmus of Kra in thailand materialiss, connecting the indian ocean with chinas pacific coast, a project that has the potential to dramaticlly shift the balance of power in asia.

  216. [...] Prabhakaran: Powerful symbol of Tamil armed struggle – by DBS Jeyaraj http://dbsjeyaraj.com/dbsj/archives/650 [...]

  217. shankar says:

    with regard to my earlier comment i think it was a bit too much for prabaharan to take on india, china, pakistan, karuna and rajapakshe.

  218. Lavleen says:

    Hellw

    I thought you would know more than me about our leader but you don’t know much. Stop telling the lies.

    What is the lie?That he was born on November 26th 1954?………..DBSJ

  219. shanthi krish says:

    214. wesley

    prabhakaran’s mother’s or father’ s sister still lives in kerala. they were interviewed on NDTV. I saw the episode personally. the police have even found the letters sent by them.

    they are malayali from kerala. DBS reads all the posts & approves them before posting. I am sure he would have challenged me because of the seriousness of the claim if it wasn’t true. but he has not.

    DBSJ RESPONDS:

    I am sorry but I must have missed this point in your earlier posting Shanthi Krish.

    If I had noted it I would have said that VP ‘s father was not from Kerala. As I wrote their family is a long – standing respected family in VVT without any immediate links to Kerala.

    I did not see this Kerala woman claiming to be a relative on TV. But I read her claim in a magazine. She had a letter written by a “Velupillai”. There was no proof that it referred to Prabhakaran’s father.

    Velupillai is a very common name among Tamils particularly Jaffna Tamils subscribing to “Kandapuraana Kalaachaaram”.

    However there is a very strong Malayalee element in the composition of Sinhala , Tamil and Muslim Sri Lankans.

    Migration from India was from both Coromandel and Malabar coasts. From the architechtural style of old houses to the practice of using much coconut in our curries the Kerala “contribution” is very visible.The dowry system itself is derived from the Kerala system.

    Kerala itself is a development of the ancient Chera kingdom. The Chera, Chola, Pandiya were the three Tamil dynasties of the classical period. Malayalam has its roots in Tamil but went on to develop as a rich, independent Language centuries ago.

    Many of us are descended from Keralites. The Kuruppus for instance were originally from the Krupp caste in Kerala. They were mercenary warriors enlisted by both the Portugese and Sitwakke Rajasingha.

    Interestingly a top Sinhala general hailed as a “Sinhala” hero is a sixth – generation Malayalee. This does not in anyway remove his “Sinhalaness” now

    I see nothing wrong in descending from different peoples and evolving into new people. Even if VP was directly from Kerala it does not matter. But for the record it must be said he is not from there

  220. R Maran says:

    Das 167.

    I am with you 100% on view about Balakumar

  221. Pramod says:

    Dear DBS

    I am curious to know how many languages VP spoke. You did n’t mention it in your write up.

    In the web page of Interpol, languages spoken by VP are English, SINGHALESE, Tamilare .

    But this can not be true.

    VP is a “thamizhan” who spoke “Thamizh”…….DBSJ

  222. Pramod says:

    correction – read Tamil in place of Tamilare -

  223. Pramod says:

    Prabhakaran has taken values from the books he read.

    And it is undisputed also he read a lot. Not as a casual reader but the one who even go in between lines and scratch to see what is behind the letters !

    Unfortunately it was only ‘celibacy ‘ instead of truth and non violence he choose from Gandhi’s autobiography.

    But used “fasting” weapon in Madras to get back his communication equipments etc seized by the sate police.

    I could gather …

    Prabhakaran was an avid reader with photographic memory but was very very choosy in words, even in entertaining various thoughts .

    but unfortunately was not choosy in wild actions.

  224. Jayan says:

    It is believed that on the final days of the war, most of the LTTE leaders, including VP & Pottu Amman was captured alive by the Army and later executed. (Pottu Amman is still in custody). Can you elaborate on this.

    You can believe what you want to believe.I dont want to waste my time……DBSJ

  225. R Maran says:

    Velupillai Balakumar

    Balakumar realised that LTTE fell into the booby-trap that was cleverly planted by JR and Lalith. Balakumar spoke to VP and requested not to escalate the matter further after Kumarappa and Pulendran swallowed cynadie. VP brought Balakumar to Kumarappa’s and Pulendran’s family told Balakumar “tell to them”. Balakumar realised there is nothing much he could do. War begun between LTTE and IPKF.

    VP maintains very close relationship Balakumar and even bought a saree from India for Balakumar’s mother. However, Balakumar was always afraid of him. Once during the IPKF time, Balakumar was summoned to Vanni for a meeting. When Balakumar and others talking to VP, upon hearing the gunfire, VP immediately took out his pistol. Balakumar said, they thought VP is going to kill them all.

    Balakumar was the only leader who took three wheeler to go places when he was in Madras with no bodyguard. Around 10 to 15 people stayed together in their Madras office. Even he was rotated to do house chores and cook for the whole team as per their roaster.

    Balakumar’s talents and potentials were never recognised by the LTTP. It was such a waste.

    DBSJ.,, I kindly request you write something about Balakumar.. If needed, i am happy to provide his family and personal background information to you.

    DBSJ RESPONDS:

    Balakumar is very much alive and has been brought to Colombo. There is no need of an “obituary” is there?

    But yes I agree with you about him. I have met him many times in Jaffna and Madras. In fact he once came to see me riding an old cycle in Chennai.

    Incidently he is from my mother’s village

    Why dont you send me a detailed e – mail please to dbsjeyaraj@yahoo.com

    Maybe one can write a profile (Not an obit)on him one of these days

  226. S Senarath says:

    Above #163 shows how much LTTE is expanded around the world. in this context Sinhalese are the minority, taken into account of the 60 million Tamils in Tamilnadu, Dravidians in Kerala, Bangalore, Karnataka, AP, then Tamils all over the world like in South Africa, Fiji, Singapore, Malaysia, Mauritus, Seychelles. There are only 17 million Sinhalese as opposed to more than 100 million Tamils
    ———–

    But this unique ethnic group known as “Ilangaithamilar” are only from “ilangai” or Sri Lanka and are a distinct minority in that Island. The Sinhalese are the majority here ………..DBSJ

  227. Pramod says:

    VP is a “thamizhan” who spoke “Thamizh”…….DBSJ

    I got my answer to my query that he spoke only Tamizh .

  228. R Maran says:

    Thanks DBSJ.

    Me too from your mother’s village.

    I will send a you detailed email about Balakumar.

  229. tharman says:

    Hi DBSJ
    Tamil History traitors are always win
    vipisnan
    edappan
    kaka Vanian
    ??/
    ??/

    DBSJ RESPONDS:

    That’s one way of looking at it.But there are other definitions also about so – called “traitors”.

    The LTTE for instance killed people who differed from their line as “traitors”. From Amirthalingam to Mrs. Yogeswaran they killed TULF as “thurogigal” or traitors. They killed PLOTE, EPRLF and TELO as traitors. They killed govt officials,journalists, priests etc as “traitors”.They killed Mahathaya as traitor. They killed the youths conscripted by Indians as traitors. Then they killed the eastern youths with Karuna as traitors. Now the diaspora elements call KP as traitor

    Looks like anyone with a different opinion is a traitor.

    When do you think will this “traitor killing” stop?

  230. Kumaran says:

    Dear DBSJ,

    Thank you for your posts. It has been a consistent source of unbiased and reliable information.

    Thank you also for taking the time to respond to some of the views expressed in the responses. Although it clearly takes a great deal of your time for you to respond to comments it allows us an opportunity to know your opinions which you, rightly, kept out of your reports.

    You said in response to #100, that Our future is inextricably inter-twined with that of the Sinhala people. We have to heal wounds, reconcile and live together. The sooner we realise it the better. I could not agree more. But wonder like Rajiv in #142 how long it will take for reconciliation or whether it is possible at all. Mahainda Rajapakses and Sarath Fonsekas speeches contained references to Dutugemunu. This, to my mind, is a reflection of their mindset. I hope I am wrong. In the end though, I feel that it is the day to day actions of ordinary people that will determine the outcome because that is what people experience in their daily lives.

    This weeks Economist contains a reference to your report. I hope your writings get a wider readership. You are continuing the tradition of Sri Lankan journalists like Tarzi Vittachi.

    I look forward to a time when you will be able to go back to writing posts like the one about Lester James Peries.

    Once again, thank you.

  231. Gopi Siva Lingam says:

    Those who blame VP should have a look at Dalai Lama and Aung San Suu Kyi. These two leader have both won Nobel peace prize; they both have only pursued non-violent means; yet because of their struggle thousands have died. They are nearing the end of their lives and have nothing to show for their long struggle. We are living in an unscrupulous world where small people do not have say any more.

    Did the Dalai Lama and Aung San Suu Kyi conscript kids or kill their own people?………DBSJ

  232. Ananda says:

    I don’t know why DBSJ keep on denying VP’s fathers Malayalee roots without any proof.

    Do you know that Raw was following VP’s Malayalee relatives after Rajiv G death?

    And who are these “Malayalee”relatives Shiv Shankar Menon and KR Narayanan?…..DBSJ

  233. kUMARI says:

    Hi DBSJ,
    I am getting to know you as a respective journalist.

    After reading most of the posts, I would like to shed light on a few questions and assumptions a lot of people are asking and making regarding VP’s death …

    Yesterday our Commander S Fonseka addressed the matter, and from what he said “we would have liked it to have caught VP alive, but it was not possible, when the call came to him that the LTTE wanted to surrender, it was 3:30 am and it is not possible in a war to blow a whistle like in a Rugby game and get everyone to stop shooting and say ‘Peace’. He went on to say that if the LTTE had contacted him 7-8 hrs ago, the Govt. would have been able to save everyone ..it was just too late!

    My husband also has personal contacts in the army and he also confirms that Prabha was found dead in the battlefield from the shootout the night before. Yet everybody is surprised to hear that his wife, daughter and other son were found dead in the battle field as well. Most believe that VP’s family other than C. Anthony is still alive abroad.

  234. human says:

    Dear DBS

    I am very disappointed that you have deleted my email.

    DBSJ RESPONDS:

    So many people including myself are quietly doing a lot of things to help those people and alleviate their sufferings. Constructive and genuine assistance can be effectively rendered better without publicity under present circumstances. You and your ilk with your “megaphone” methods have brought the Tamils to disaster and you continue to worsen their plight.

    There is no need for you to advise me on this. I am doing what is possible in my own way without any trumpeting. That is my way.If you want to help do it quietly without shouting from rooftops.

    If you were genuine you could have made your feelings known through a private mail to me. Posting it as a “comment” for the world to know is not the proper way. In short please shut up.If you persist with comments of this type they will be deleted.

  235. Liyanage says:

    If only the student Velupillai Prabhakaran had got through his G.C.E. O’levels.

    Three Tamil Nadu chief ministers -Kamaraj, Karunanidhi and MGR – did not have Grade 10…….DBSJ

  236. Pramod says:

    ” Prabhakaran : The Powerful symbol of Tamil Armed struggle ” .

    That armed struggle has utterly failed .

    Half a million landed in camps.

    Thousands died.

    Thousands lost near and dear ones.

    Thousands lost limbs.

    That power symbol has become symbol of trauma.

    It need to be erased from public memory.

  237. Bandara Atapattu says:

    Can anyone shed some light on this please?

    The army released 2 sets of pictures of dead VP by the lagoon. One in his underware and one in his striped uniform.

    Was he killed in his “amude” (underware) hiding in the lagoon and the first set of pictures were taken?

    And then for some reason, later they clad him in a tiger uniform and the second set of pictures were taken?

    Now when the army shows other mutilated corpses in graphic pictures, why this bother to show their prize catch in uniform, and not the actual way his corpse was found?

    I can’t imagine, that the army found him in uniform and then stripped him to his underware.

    I’ve a gut feeling, that their is something more here than meet the eye.

    Any ideas?

    You are asking the wrong people. You should ask the govt to come clean on this………DBSJ

  238. P Shantikumar says:

    A very good article. It also stands testament to your journalistic integrity. I am also particularly impressed and indeed gratified by people associating Prabaharan with the Gita. As Dixit himself put it, Prabaharan has indeed inculcated the Gita.

    It is a pity that some Tamil intellectuals don’t see Prabaharan in that light. These Tamil intellectual Hottentots look down on the LTTE as though they are a bunch of ‘uneducated brutes’. These Hottentots who live in intellectual squalor could only see ‘ghettoes’ around them, thereby exposing their cultural disorientation, ignorance and arrogance.

    These Hottentots, who could not make the Sinhala governments sit up and listen, or indeed have not succeeded in explaining what bothers Tamils, seem to know for certain whether or not Tamil Eelam is achievable.

    Such attitude and behaviour on the part of some so-called Tamil intellectuals clearly demonstrate their contempt for their own community. It is malice of such people that poisoned and killed the LTTE!

    Prabaharan certainly had a spiritual side to him, which transcended intellectuality. We could certainly discern that from the way he was able to such a large and complex organisation as the LTTE and its world-wide influence despite strong opposition from some Tamils themselves.

    The LTTE has been a trailblazer in Tamil politics for over three decades. I suppose, we now have to pick up the pieces and move on!

  239. Nissanka says:

    Give me a break Gopi. How can you compare a megalamaniac like VP to Dalai Lama and Aung San Sukyi. The way some people are carrying on,
    soon some one will try to compare him to Jesus.
    Atleast now understand the damage he did for the Tamil name. Diaspora should visit SL and go to your villages and spend some money so that the economy of these areas pick up.

    I rest my case.

    God bless all.

  240. Ariya says:

    Did the Dalai Lama and Aung San Suu Kyi conscript kids or kill their own people?DBSJ

    This was your answer to the last post, so you have said everything in that line, I believe.

    As you portray him, this Prabakaran was not a “brave” guy, for he didn’t fight his own war like man (nothing against women here, ok?)

    I never thought he was human, less a man. I suppose, usually, men, at least Asian men defend their women, whether these women are related or not. He sat and ate the “last meal” with a woman, sometimes just a child, knowing very well that he is sending this unfortunate person to his/her death. It never crossed his “kinky” mind that he is killing one of his own people, a Tamil.

    Maybe as you suggest , he fought (?) for his Tamils, but where did he get the right to kill someone, just because he/she/child is a Tamil?

    If he is “such” a patriot of Tamil people, why didn’t he send his daughter as a suicide bomber?

    Why is that his daughter is “better” Tamil than some other Tamil parent’s child?

    No, Jeyaraj, Prabakaran was not a Tamil, for he killed more Tamils than anyone else, worst of all he killed Tamil children, and he didn’t care less!

    He was a Monster, who brought anguish and destroyed Tamil person’s dignity!

    I have many Tamil friends, colleagues, and know many Tamil people and I don’t consider any of them as Tamils, but as human beings! I talk and joke with them everyday, and I don’t understand Tamil language, but that does not make any difference to us. I don’t even know the names of some and they don’t even know my name, but we do smile at each other everyday!

    No, Jeyaraj, I don’t think Prabakaran was a human being, he forgot that we all breath air and air is free to all of us. He forgot that he didn’t have the right to eat a “last meal” with a Tamil person, and sending that person to sure death!

    I was taught from small days that I must not rejoice of anyone’s death, but I cannot say, I didn’t rejoice the demise of this Monster, for I know that many Tamil citizens of Sri Lanka did breath a sigh of relief at the news that this Monster is no more!

  241. Pramod says:

    #239. P Shantikumar
    //The LTTE has been a trailblazer in Tamil politics for over three decades. I suppose, we now have to pick up the pieces and move on! //

    What pieces you want to pick up ?

    The bone pieces of those innocents buried in war zone ?

  242. S Senarath says:

    Your comment “But this unique ethnic group known as “Ilangaithamilar” are only from “ilangai” or Sri Lanka and are a distinct minority in that Island. The Sinhalese are the majority here ………..” –

    Dear Jay, I live in Canberra. I am a regular reader and have directed my friends to your website. I don’t know about “Ilangai” but Tamilnadu is the origin of Sri Lankan Tamils. Jaffna Tamils (Eastern Tamils may be from Malabar but I am not sure) look like them, speak with the same accent and dialect, same food, clothes, features, names, religious beliefs, and even today Jaffna and Eastern Tamils run to Tamilnadu for everything. So if they want a Homeland they should go back to Thamilnadu. Sinhalese came to Sri Lanka more than 2500 years ago Tamils came to settle about 600 years ago. Yes, there have been Tamil invaders but our Kings always chased them away. North East are ancient Sinhalese Civilization, the remnants are still there.

    Ilangai is the homeland of Ilangai Thamilar. Their homeland is NOT Tamil Nadu…….DBSJ

  243. Michael Smith says:

    Dave

    You are talking about a next struggle. Sir, the armed struggle is totally over. It will not happen (Sinhalese will not allow it ) for another 1000 years. Because of Tamils the Government will implement 13 amendment but I wish Lanka goes back to Solbury Constitution, it served the country (all the ethnic groups) so very well

  244. georgethebushpig says:

    DBS, Thanks for sharing that personal story and insight into the 1958 riots in your response to my comment # 63. I guess you proved beyond a shadow of doubt what an indelible imprint the horror of being targeted can leave on a 4 year old.

    I just hope that all the kids who were exposed to some of the worst atrocities over the course of the last 26 years are able to overcome its influence and be able to grow up to be sane, rational and witty individuals like you. I appreciate all your past and continuing efforts to bring to light the “truth”…. as close as it gets. Yes, our future is inextricably intertwined!

  245. georgethebushpig says:

    DBS, Thanks for sharing that personal story and insight into the 1958 riots in your response to my comment # 63. I guess you proved beyond a shadow of doubt what an indelible imprint the horror of being targeted can leave on a 4 year old.

    I just hope that all the kids who were exposed to some of the worst atrocities over the course of the last 26 years are able to overcome its influence and be able to grow up to be sane, rational and witty individuals like you. I appreciate all your past and continuing efforts to bring to light the truth. as close as it gets. Yes, our future is inextricably intertwined!

  246. shanthi krish says:

    231. Gopi Siva Lingam

    VP, Dalai Lama and Aung San Suu Kyi all had one thing in common. they are supported by the west.

    VP was supported covertly. Dalai Lama and Aung San Suu Kyi overtly. it was when VP was cornered to a 3 square mile radius that the western cats jumped out of the bag.

    all these years they had used VP to destabilise india sri lanka & the region. by coming after sri lanka post war they plan to prolong the racial hatred & make the sri lankan tamils suffer more. that is their strategy for they do not want stability in the region.

    the sea route south of sri lanka is ear marked to be the most important in the world but has the weakest US naval presence. this bothers the USA/westerners no end. VP did a great job destabilising the region for the westerners all this while. The rise of china controlling a stable sea trading route that connects the leading economic powers in the world gives the westerners a continuous nightmare.

    they will sponsor any tin pot dictator to prevent the rise of the region. VP was tailor made to fit the western agenda. his sudden demise has shocked the west in an unexpected way & has exposed their hand.

    BTW when LTTE bumped off the cream of the indian & sri lankan politicians the westerners were very cold & patronizing in their statements. even questioning whether LTTE really did it. but after VP’s death they have really lost their cool & gone nuts. does anybody imagine that the western anger is based on HR or a couple of thousand demonstrators blocking their highways? if so they are sadly mistaken.

    the real reason is that MR has dealt a death blow to their key covert NATO agent in the area.

  247. shanthi krish says:

    238. P Shantikumar

    Prabaharan certainly had a very spiritual side to him alright. some very expensive wine & whiskey bottles were found in his bunkers. they were completely empty.

    hundreds of empty local arrack bottles were also found at the locations of the other LTTE leaders. they were all highly spiritual.

  248. human says:

    Dear DBS

    I am not going to trouble you any more. What is the point of posting comments to an oppressive website.

    Thank You very much.That’s really the “best” news I’ve heard today……..DBSJ

  249. Stephen Jones says:

    But this unique ethnic group known as “Ilangaithamilar” are only from “ilangai” or Sri Lanka and are a distinct minority in that Island. The Sinhalese are the majority here ………..DBSJ

    Lankan Tamils may be separate culturally from other Tamils but to call them a unique ethnic group is faintly ridiculous, a bit like saying New York Jews or North Dakotan Swedes form a unique cultural group.

    Ilangai Thamilar are a unique ethno-cultural group from Ilangai(Lanka)…………..DBSJ

  250. Mavady says:

    I want to share a true story with Kingsley(99) , Maran(187) &this forum.
    As Kingsley and Maran said TNA forcibly took away 13 years old boy who was student and living with parents in Baticoloa. TNA brought that guy along with other young recruits to Jaffna and kept them in Hotel Ashok (Old Building). Actually that boy is cousin brother of my best friend and my friend mum went to hotel Ashok and begs for his release from Muruganesan of EPRLF/TNA. Muruganeasan kicked my friend mum and warned her not come again. Still she kept on going everyday with a hope of his release but no luck.( I need to tell one think here that I know Muruganesan and his father Arumugam(Master) very well and both of them very nice people . But you won’t believe that Muruganesan turned to brutal arrogant after he joined with EPRLF.)
    After couple of weeks IPKF left the country and EPRLF/TNA disappeared. I and my friend brought that guy back. This news spread locally and two LTTE supporters (We call them as “sawvu”) came to my friend’s house and ask my friend and his parents that they want take that boy to the LTTE camp in “SiruVillan” for inquiry and bring him back in six hours time. My friend father said I could bring him with you and LTTE supporters said that camp was in a secret place and their boss is not like outsiders coming over there. As those two supporters are also from our village and we know them very well, my friend’s parents let the boy go with these supporters for 6 hours inquiry.(They have no choice).
    But they did not bring that boy back in 6 hours as they promised. Not even 6 days, not Even 6 weeks. Whenever my friend’s parents nagging to local supporters regarding that small boy they replied that they will bring him back tomorrow. But that tomorrow never came. Now that boy’s parents from Baticola came to Jaffna to find the way of his release. Eventually one day those supporters took my friend’s parents to LTTE camp and they were told that “Still inquiry is going on and he will be released soon”. That boy parents kept going to the LTTE camp everyday and turn LTTE kept answer them “Soon” .After seven month LTTE said that boy is no more “alive” and they warn the parents that they should keep their mouth shut.
    There are so many true stories like this. If our legitimate freedom fighters could simply kill innocent boy(s) who were forcibly kidnapped by EPRLF/TNA; what’s on earth we could expect Government armed forces going to look after (like VIP’S) surrendered LTTE cards that were mostly recruited by LTTE by force. Since we kept quite when our own LTTE and other armed groups kill our own innocent people how could we expect armed forces give amnesty to the LTTE cards? But I hope Government should consider sympathetic way and give common amnesty. That is way they could win the heart and mind of the Tamil people and bring the long lasting peace in Sri Lanka. And also Government should disarm all Tamil paramilitary groups and stop their barbaric activities. By supporting these mercenaries Government can’t get the support of Tamil people. If that is the case Tamil people shall be compel to support LTTE again. So Government and Sinhala community should think about long term peace in Sri Lanka and work along with Tamil community and create viable political model to satisfy everyone aspirations. Buddhist extremist or Buddhist Monks should not be an “obstacle” to any peace . Tamil Diaspora should create powerful Global body which can address our people political rights as well as conflict resolution on behalf of Tamils.
    Dear DBS
    I know few readers already request you in a various occasions to take initiative to our “Conflict Resolutions”. Even my understanding, you have right attributed to be in-charge of this process. I know you are more interest on journalism than politics. But considering your depth knowledge on our national problem and our destitute people desperately need the help of somebody like you. I hope you will change your mind. What do you expect from your readers on this regard? I know this is very difficult task and we need to coordinate with different minded people but for our people and our country, your contribution very much needed now.

    ——-
    Thank You but sorry I just want to keep away from politics and keep on writing……..DBSJ

  251. subramanium says:

    DBS ..

    I am afraid your info on how VP died is inaccurate .

    I have not written anything on HOW Prabhakaran died.At least not yet………….DBSJ

  252. subramanium says:

    The guy died like a coward begging for mercy – while he let a lot of little kids die as mahaveers .

    I dont think he died like a coward begging for mercy………….DBSJ

  253. Anton says:

    For Tilak de Silva (102)
    What do you call the people who aim to destroy a nation’s heritage by burning down their precious library? What do you call the people who stripped off the clothes of dead LTTE fighters and displayed them at the town centre of Anuradhapura (I wonder why this did not happen with the bodies of VP and his senior leaders)? What do yo call the people who burnt innocent Tamils alive in 83? What do you call the Government who failed to protect innocent Tamils until noon on July 25th, 1983? What do you call a person like Nanayakara (113)? What do you call the people who killed Kumar Ponnambalam who was against violence but spoke the truth for the Tamils?
    For Nanayakara(113),
    Thank you for recognizing that the overseas Tamils are doing much better. This is what they would have become had they been in Sri Lanka with equal rights as any other Sinhalese. Tamils are hard working, humble and reasonable people who can thrive under testing conditions. This is why you see DBSJ and many other Tamils expressing their views in a reasonable way. Is it wrong for the Tamils to think they should determine their own destiny? It is people like you who brought about the youth violence in the seventies. You have so much hatred and can not tolerate that Tamils exist on this earth. Because, by the democratic scale, majority of the Sinhalese continued to elect leaders who opressed Tamils. They expected Tamils to continue with their pedal cycles and live as humble as they are, pleasing Singhalese along the way. Any leadership trying offer justice to the Tamils risked being thrown out of power. This clearly shows what the majority sentiment is. The youth of the 70′s thought otherwise when the moderate tamil leaders were exausted with their democratic efforts to bring justice to Tamils. In 1974, well before the youth took to violence, the tamils could not even host a conference on their language research. 9 innocent tamils died in police acton. A memorial erected at the sight was removed by a bull dozer. All this happened under the power and eyes of the then Mayor of Jaffna who was the 1st traget of the Tigers. I do not justify this killing but would have expected him to be accountable. Also, I grew up in his neighbourhood and I knew him as a well respected and helpful gentleman. I Mentioned it here as a sample to let you know how for decades the Tamils were denied of their simple democratic rights within a unitary Sri Lanka. In my opinion, the Sinhala Only Act, burning down their precious symbol the Jaffna Public Library (not by the police but by Sinhalese mobs brought from the south by a Govt. Minister), the Standardization Act, the incident in Jan 1974 and the failure of the democratic tamil leaders to succesfully address these injustices were all the foundation for the youth to form these groups. It is not that tamils fancied violence. If you hate the Tamils so much, why not let them be on their own?.
    Dear DBSJ, I am proud of you and appreciate your work. All these years you cried out for the end of violence in our struggle for justice and equality. Now that the armed struggle has ended, please do your part and show the world the otherside of the story. Would you write your analysis as to how this struggle should be shaped up for the future. I do not think you believe that justice has already been done with the elimination of LTTE.

  254. Gopi Siva Lingam says:

    My post 231: DBSJ, my point was even if Piraba pursued a morally better way, he may not have achieved anything as this increasingly ‘commercial’ world has lost interest in the well being of us ‘small people’.
    To Nisanka’s reply (239): VP has already been compared to Jesus after being ‘killed’ numerous times in the past and coming back alive. Your comment about asking the Diaspora’s to pump money into the open prisons and concentration camps sickens me. Let the people have a free life first, then ask the people to help.

    IF so how suicidal was it to adopt a violent struggle that has utterly debilitated Tamils?….DBSJ

  255. DRLANKA says:

    Political parties with Ealam and Tamil tags are going to be abolished in Srilanka, what are the prospects for the Tamils in srilanka.?

    What role the paramilitaries operating with Srilankan government is going to play?

    Finally Some guy here invited DBS to join politics, may I know which party is he considering?

  256. Atif says:

    Yes…..i have been telling my friends all along that the wound on prabhakar’s forehead is a long range heavy bore sniper’s shot. The bullet had exited from the back skull blowing a part of it away.
    He was most probably taken out by the sniper whithout him knowing the victims real identity. Maybe it was dawn and dark or it was raining that night so visual identification was difficult.
    Snipers are usually taught to shoot on the head first to disable and disorient the target and then go for body shot,,, to finish the job.
    For confidential reasons the SLA is not highlighting the snipers role or identity clearly to save him and his family from any revenge attack by the hidden LTTE remnants.
    The startled look on his face in the final moment is a sign that death was sudden.
    A captured and tortured person shot from point blank or very close range will not have this look.
    Most Probably when they were making the final escape from the no-fire zone in a small team
    with light weapons only they were ambushed.
    I Think that the SLA were prepared that Prabhakaran & co will try to escape in a final bid from the evershrinking no-fire zone in a small group… so thay had an advance sniper teams ready.
    As the snipers have long range rifles and are hidden or one can say blended with the local landscape and are trained to stay still for along time plus are away from clear shooting range of enemies …they have an advantage of the first shot.
    The SLA says that Prabhakaran was found with four of his bodyguards bodies near him which means that there were no survivors to burn his body as he had always wished after his death….they all were cut down one after another.
    The Ambulance attack with burnt bodies and firing story could be a smoke screen by the LTTE to allow Prabhakaran to escape quickly. Knowing that all wirless communication are monitered in war zone as in peacetime and there is no secured frequency the LTTE Threw a final gamble to allow thier leader to escape and maybe the SLA were taken in by the story for some time that is why there was initial confusion and conflicting news on 17-18 MAY.After his body was found near the lagoon/beach all other unsure news came to rest.
    Because it was raining that night and the temparature was cool the body did not detoriate badly and had a fresh look about it.
    My theory is that his family may have been captured alive and could be at some secret location undergoing interrogation to extract maximum information or were also killed and the bodies burned/buried to destroy all proofs.[Ultimately they will be under disappeared list soon].
    Of course i am saying this discounting all the conspiracy theory going around that it was his body double or a fake body or was he was captured earlier and killed later etc etc. I only say as i saw on TV etc. I have no privy to information that the SLA or RAW may have about this which may come out later or may never come out.
    Thats all for now…

  257. Maran says:

    DR.LANKA committed a genocide without any witnesses, in the name of eradicating Tamil terrorism, the funny thing is they are going to investigate their own war crimes by them selves, what a yoke!!!

    DR.LANKA is holding Tamil civilians against their will in internment camps, this would be the worlds biggest ever hostage taking and kidnapping in the world’s history.

    Stop genocide, Stop ethnic cleansing and accept war crime investigation

  258. subramanium says:

    DBS ..

    If you do some research you will find that all most of the official stories floating around are smokescreens . on VPs death . Poster no 134 ‘s post is not too far away from the truth based on my sources. some details are inaccurate but it is closer to the truth than other versions . neither Tamil net nor KP will admit the truth as it will show VP for what he really is . (a coward who hid behind children) . His death is not that different to that of wijeweera , other than for the fact he got more of what he deserved .

    please dont glorify this mass murderer cum coward , he and his goons destroyed my family and many other tamil families .

  259. The80Factor says:

    I agree with Das, comment #167 and R Maran’s comments about,

    “EROS Balakumar was a great and genuine freedom fighter”.

    I always wondered what happened to him. I am glad he is alive (According to DBSJ).

    Genuine leaders like him needs more recognition for I believe he could polish and bring the back the reputation of a “Tamil Freedom Fighter” that has been tarnished and destroyed by the fellow militants groups including the LTTE.

    I wish him well and hopefully will see him in the political area soon representing the Tamil people .

  260. subramanium says:

    There is a very good hint in your own story which is titled VP and pottu go silent while soosai and Nadesan try for a ceasefire . just think what this silent means .

  261. Jones says:

    Dear DBSJ,

    Pretty good article, DBS. Gives some insight into VP’s past. I was curious about what made him such a ruthless person. Looks like the saying ” Kathiya yeduthavanukku, Kathila than saavu” has become true. If Truth is on your side, you will ultimately win. ( proved by Gandhis No-violent struggle and success)

    Past is Past. we have to learn our lessons from the past. But, We can’t be living in the past. What the Tamils need at this hour is some courageous leaders who can come up and take the task to provide leadership, help to rebuild the lives of thousands of tamilians, and work towards a hopefully brighter future in this Country, for the Tamil People and future Generations.
    Let’s Pray to GOD for this to happen. May Peace come to this land..

    Thanks,

  262. R Maran says:

    Mavady Comments 250

    Your story brought tears. What a cruel world we live in?

    R Maran

  263. Suresh Navaratnam says:

    # 185 Shanthi Krish.

    What happened to you? Seems like lost your senses.

    Dear DBSJ, can you please put a stop to this “Clown”, from running berserk throughout this postings.

    Malayali then Immigration looking for them? This guy is good for nothing except for day dreaming!

  264. Gopal says:

    Dear DBS,

    As an independent observer of Malaysian Indian origin, I thank you for this article and I like the way you have presented the human aspect of Velupillai Prabhakaran (VP) which I am sure many of us never knew existed. Lately, there has been numerous awareness created in Malaysia on the sufferings of Sri Lankan Tamils. I had read the Sri Lankan issues on many different sites portraying their enemy as the worst people on earth. However, I find your articles more reasonable and I have a better understanding of the issues in Sri Lanka through your writings.

    As I was reading this particular article on VP, I was starting to have a soft corner for him. But sadly, as I finished reading it, my mind still goes back to the fact, he was the man behind such tragic end to the Tamil legitimate struggles and also the cause of so much suffering to the IDPs and was mainly to be blamed for such human catastrophe which currently took place in Vanni.

    Being a Malaysian Indian and having gone through oppression from the majority Malay / Muslim government all this years, we experienced too many open discriminations upon its very own citizens. From the University education to working in Government sectors to obtaining government contracts and so on (and the lists is countless), we see discrimination in everything and everywhere. Thus, I understand what the Tamils in Sri Lanka would have gone through all this while and their frustrations. But yet, in my personal opinion, I still wish a person like VP will not rise in the Malaysians soil in the name of freedom fighting.

    In Malaysia, the Malays (know as the bumiputra) are basically spoon fed in every aspect of their life whereas the Chinese, Indians and other minorities have to struggle so hard for some very basic needs as the citizen of the country. The discrimination we have gone through in Malaysia I would say is far worst than what it is in Sri Lanka. We are treated as 2nd class citizen and in some instance even as 3rd class citizens.

    I am sure many are aware the presence of the Tamils of Sri Lankan origin (whom I will refer as Tamils) for almost 3 or 4 generations now in Malaysia. They along with the Malaysians of Indian (South Indian) origin (referred to as Indians whom also made Malaysia their home for many generations) come under the category of Indians. However, you would hardly come across Tamils whom are of middle class status in Malaysia. A big Majority are considered the upper class society with very strong academic and professionals background whom contribute greatly to the economy and intellectual society in Malaysia. In other words, it is extremely rear to come across Tamils whom are anything below the upper class status in Malaysia. Having said that, I should also mention, the Tamils certainly have superiority complex and an arrogant lot in Malaysia.

    I believe, the Tamils came out as a distinguished society in Malaysian due to their hard work and self determination and the need they saw in education and excellence in whatever their undertakings are. In Malaysia, if you have all this criteria, then you will not to be subject to discrimination as you are able to find your own means to come up in life.

    If they (the Tamils) could do it in Malaysia, then they will be able to do it in Canada, in UK, in Australia and even in Sri Lanka. The war had currently and most certainly caused such brains to leave Sri Lanka. It is a loss to the country as a whole.

    I had few opportunities to visit Sri Lanka recently. I traveled to north and saw how the country is so back wards due to the war. At the same time, some parts of Colombo are just like being in developed cities of Malaysia. I believe, with the end of this war, Sri Lanka, within the next couple of years, will emerge as equally developed or even much better than Malaysia and Singapore. But, certainly this process can be speedup by pulling back many Tamil brains that left the country and are currently contributing big time to countries they are now a resident of.

    What saddens me as well is how the present generation of Tamils within the Diaspora are influenced by some negative propaganda materials of portraying all Singhalese as barbarians and are in the verge to kill every Tamil they come across in Sri Lanka. I for one, after reading the LTTE sympathetic sites believed that and had many fears. When I first went around in Colombo, I had some reservation whenever a Singhalese looks at me. Obviously I look very Tamil. But after sometime, I came to realise not all Singhalese are such extremists and there are many more whom are silently wishing for a peaceful country. Nevertheless, I was afraid to adventure out in Colombo on my own for 2 main reasons. Number 1, fear of suicide bombing in public places by the LTTE and secondly, afraid of being detained by the army in Colombo since I am a Tamil. I know many Tamils in Colombo whom although live together with the Singhalese; nevertheless, they always have a fear within them of being a target for violence in the hands of the extremist.

    Having said that, it is also worth mentioning, throughout my 2 months stay in Colombo, I certainly have some nice things to say about the many peace loving Singhalese people I met. I know, many Tamils from the Diaspora cannot forget the atrocities committed by the Singhalese extremists and it is very difficult for them to even think of reconciliation especially now. However, the only thing which could probably soften the Tamils will be when the Government of Sri Lanka shows their sincerity in finding a reasonable solution in addressing the Tamils struggle and make them feel they are Sri Lankans and not Tamil and not minorities. Until that time the Government wins the heart and minds of the Tamils, there will always exists a gap between the Tamils and Singhalese.

    When I listened to many worldwide Tamil radio stations, I am so disturbed by many callers whom strongly wish the arms struggle should continue in the name of a separate state of Ellem. I for one cannot imagine sending my children to fight in a war. I assume it will be the case with most Tamil parents of the Diaspora. As such, I failed to understand the mentality of some Tamils within the Diaspora whom are instigating the arms struggle to continue at the cost of children of other family as long as it is not my own. For those selfish minded persons, I just wish they would personally travel to Vanni and see for themselves how the IDPs have suffered immensely due to the freedom fighting. I feel so depressed when I look at pictures of them and hear their horror stories of being caught in between two very fierce groups of people fighting in the name of liberation.

    I don even know how these poor civilians are going to continue with their life hereafter. I wish we as human beings can do more to help them rather than instigate more young Tamils from continuing with a violent struggle.

    I guess, VPs birth brought upon 50,000 or more deaths and there are far too many civilians being disabled. I sincerely hope his death will bring upon a peaceful Sri Lanka and put an end to suicide bombing and other violence as means for liberation of Tamils. I sincerely wish, more Tamil intellects will openly come out with a peace plan for a peaceful Sri Lanka. I wish the legitimate plight and struggle for equal right of Tamils in Sri Lanka will only continue through diplomatic manoeuvre and not through another violent path.

  265. Gopi Siva Lingam says:

    DBSJ, thanks for responding to my post #231, 254.
    Let me elaborate more:
    By the late 70s the Tamils of SL had decided that self determination\separate-state was the only solution that was going to bring a long lasting peace for generations to come. The failures of the life-long ‘ahimsa’ struggle of SJVC just increased the oppression. Hence with the death of SJVC, they (the youth in particular) had decided an armed resistance was the only way to get what the community wanted (ie; Tamil Eelam). Dalai Lama and Aung San Suu Kyi are living proves to the fact that their judgment (that a peaceful struggle is futile) was correct.
    LTTE and the other armed groups chose a violent path, often unscrupulous in many ways. But having decided Tamil Eelam was the solution for long lasting peace and seeing that the world had stopped recognising the peaceful pleas of small people, it could not be any other way. The sad reality was that the evilest one, the one who killed the most, was going to win the war! LTTE gained the upper hand in Eelam war III and became a potent force in the late 1990s not by caring about the international opinion, but by becoming more violent and more unscrupulous. Now the government has won Eelam War IV by being more barbaric and evil than anyone else since the independence.
    Hence when we judge VP, we could say that his failure was not that he was ‘killing’, but he was not killing enough! This is the lesson that we learn from the history of Sri Lanka. Dutta (evil) Gemunu went on a killing spree and killed all the Tamils and their kings (33 Tamil kings including Ellalan – according to Mahavamsa) and performed the ultimate act of ethnic cleansing in the history of the island and brought the entire island under the Buddhist rule for the first time. He used every dirty trick possible to win the war – even used his own mother as a …well you know the history. Yet by winning the war he stands a hero for 2200 year and still inspires the Sinhalese. Thanks to his largely unscrupulous war, the Sinhalese have a country where they could rule themselves. Now you tell me, what was VP’s mistake? Being unscrupulous or not being unscrupulous enough?

  266. Liyanage says:

    From what I’ve heard both Kamaraj and MGR had to struggle during their school ages due to their fathers deaths. Apparently, Kamaraj’s mother had to sell her jewellery to take care of the family. No such hardship for Prabhakaran. There are two types of people who would do things in the future based on their past experiences. Some would ensure that others suffer the same if they had failed or disadvantaged in the past. Some would do everything to help others realising the fact that they had missed the opportunities during their early stages of life. Kamaraj belongs to the latter and unfortunately Prabhakaran belongs to the previous category. He made sure thousands of other children were deprived of their education (Bar his own children ofcourse). He did not see the value of education. It is a waste of time as far as he is concerned.

    I could have easily guessed that Karunanidhi hadn’t reached grade 10. But he managed to make it to the record books by conducting the fastest hunger strike ever. He started the strike saying that “let me be another victim of Mr Rajapakse”, but it was all over by lunch time.

  267. Nandakumar says:

    “a top singala soldier” has kerala roots? Who is this? I remember seeing a pic of MR doing a tulabhara in a Guruvayoorapan temple. Also some protests about some MR’s relatives doing some pooja in 1 temple to vanquish enemies. Now is MR a Buddhist, no? is he a Catholic? his middle name says so? is he a hindu? now non-Hindus are not allowed in Guruvayoorappan temple!! oops. I am lost. I am just another avid follower of your blog, from the tamilnadu side of the palk straits.

  268. P Shantikumar says:

    #247 Shanthi Krish

    See I told you, the LTTE are teetotallers. Otherwise, why would those bottles (real or imagined) be empty.

    You really are taking the LTTE or what’s left of it to task. Well done! Keep it up. If you still haven’t learned, you soon will do assuming you have requisite amount of gray cells left to discern and discriminate Sri Lankan politics.

    #241 Pramod

    My dear dear Pramod: I thought the SLA have destroyed even evidence of bone fragments of those innocent Tamil civilians they ruthlessly slaughtered in their thousands to cover their track against war crimes indictment?

  269. Keatharan says:

    Yes! He is greatest Tamil man in the world.I think one book was published in the name of “The Hundred”.In the book included the Name of Subas Chanrabose but there is no Mahathma Gandhi’s name.

    Infuture in history might be the Prabhaharan’s name but, definitely I know no one keep the Mahinda’s name in history I beleive.For example JR,R Premadasa and CBK

    All Tamils have done a mistake. In the final war we everyone should be buffer to him.We missed the chance.The chance never come in future.I’m crying for that.When I go along the A9 road many times they asked with me.At that time I neglect that.I think every youth done like this.This lead to defeat.

    There was many able persons to fight but they also neglect that.Therefore they suffering by “Mahawamsam”.If you think scientifically never born a child from a women and a lion.I think if you want to live a human in Sri Lanka you must switch your ethnicity as Sinhalese and Budhist.Otherwise Can’t be live here until next Prabhakaran come.

    Hon.Prabhakaran said that in simple words”If the JR is a true Bhudist I never come as a fighter”

    JR-Junior Richards Jeyawardena He switched his religion for studies then switch again for politics.Therefore he called as “wolf”

    Keatharan

    History apart when will you all convene a meeting to honour VP’s memory?………DBSJ

  270. Ariya says:

    Dear DBSJ,
    You published what I wrote without a comment from you. I thought some of the people might read that and think a bit differently, and maybe comment on that. I’d like to stress again that we all are humans and we breathe air, and air is free, so I hope all of us can now forget about the bad times and think and act for the future. Even though world is getting smaller everyday, because of ever growing population, I strongly believe there is still enough place in it for all of us to live happily. Smile doesn’t cost anything, and it has a healing effect too.
    I do hope the so-called diaspora should throw away their grievances and hatred come together to make Sri Lanka a better place! I don’t think they are treated “that” well in those foreign countries.
    Having said all above, I still don’t think that Prabakaran was a human being! Actually, I feel sorry for that guy, even though he got the “chance” to live in this world, he just didn’t have enough luck to become a human!

  271. Vasi Sachchi says:

    Does anyone know what happened to Balakumar?

  272. ug says:

    I am a Keralite Indian came to this blog while searching for information about Sri Lanka when the last phase of the war broke out and has been a regular visitor since then.

    I would like to comment on Prabhakaran’s Kerala connection, comment #219

    Prabhakaran’s Kerala connection was under investigation after Rajiv Gandhi was assassinated. The lady (Janaki Amma, from Quilon) who claimed to be Prabha’s cousine was interrogated by the CBI and concluded that her maternal uncle Veluppilai is not Prabha’s father. This matter surfaced again in the last phase of the war and Kerala police had conducted further enquiries and confirmed beyond doubt that Prabhakaran’s father is not her maternal uncle. This came in the malayalam dailies during the initial phase of the last war. Some English dailies again came with the news on 25 April with title, “cousine prays for Prabhakaran…” The Velupillai mentioned in the news is/was a trader and had a provision store in Jafna. But Prabhakaran’s father retired as a government servant.

    I had a pen friend from Jafna during the late 80′s and 90′s. An elderly woman who studied in Madras and some women’s college in Kerala. She had many friends from Kerala and she used to write to me about the many similarities of Jafna Tamils and Keralites have. She wrote to me that Jaffna Tamil is more similar to Malayalam, many houses have ground dug wells like kerala homes etc. I stopped writing to her after Rajiv Gandhi was assassinated. I was in the finishing stage of my studies and her letters were censored by the Indian authorities so I did not want to get into any trouble. More over the assassination of Rajiv made me sad. She wrote to me many letters after that but I did not respond. Later, I saw many Sri Lankan Tamils in Zurich and to my surprise I noticed that their Tamil is more similar to Malayalam. For example, tamils in TN pronounce “zha” as “la”… But the Tamils I met in Zurich were pronouncing “zha” as we malayalies pronounce!

    A friend of mine from Tamilnadu duiring that time told me that Sri Lanka was fast developing and to stop that it was the govt. of India indirectly played a role in supporting the LTTE and create troubles inside SL. I do not know veracity of such an information and any comment on it would be appreciated.

    I have also read that many Sinhalies also originated from Kerala. This maybe true because I read somewhere that at a time the caste discrimination was so extreme in Kerala, many belong to the lower caste, mainly people from Ezhava community, mass converted to Buddhism and migrated to Ceylon.

    Not only the Flora and Fauna but the cultural connection between Sri Lanka and Kerala was once vibrant. Among the third world countries, Kerala and Sri Lanka has the highest urbanization. Many Sinhala villages are very similar to Kerala vilages etc. I never been to SL but would like to visit one day.

    Recently I read in the article written by Marie Colvin that Vijay Nambiar’s role as UN envoy has come into question. His brother Sathish Nambiar is a paid consultant of SL Army. Incidently, they are also Keralites!

    I have read about Prabha’s marriage in Adele Balasingham’s book, A will to freedom. She has mentioned in the book that Prabhakaran cooked himself once when she and her husband came back to SL. That tells that Prabha was a good cook.

  273. Irony says:

    DBS, U have mentioned that VP’s fav song was “Maranathai Enni Kalangidum Vijaya”. However the many jokers (AKA follwers) MUST be singing “ullaththil nalla ullam urangathenbathu…..” from the same story/movie i guess… Nonsense .. jus to know u have in many comments metioned that prabha didnt surrender or kill him self… who exactly did he die??? let us know if u do please…

    I’ve only mentioned that VP never surrendered………………DBSJ

  274. ug says:

    Since VP’s parents are in the detention camp, I wonder why the Sri Lankan authorities did not conduct a DNA test to match with his parents!

  275. Balachandran says:

    DBSJ, I wholeheartedly agree with you, Prabhakaran was a “powerful symbol of Tamil armed struggle”, and I think he would be remembered as such for ages to come.

    Once I heard that the young LTTE cadres used to sing Tamil songs of liberation to inspire them while fighting the battles with the IPKF. This is how Prabhakaran was able to take on the large Indian army of more than 100,000 with a small number of committed cadres. He had the ability to rally his cadres to take on the fight.

    Thanks for bringing out the non militant aspects of Prabhakaran in your writing. I think he had that multi-dimensional complexity of character the great leaders have. Unfortunately, due to the nature of the armed struggle, he was living in a virtual prison and most of the people didn’t get to know the humane aspects of his character.

    In my opinion, since independence, not a single Tamil leader (which includes also S.J.V. Chelvanayagam) had the charisma, courage or the determination like Prabhakaran to rally his fold to take on the struggle.

    The non-violent struggle by the earlier leaders was a dismal failure because the leaders themselves weren’t sincere in their efforts. When Gandhi was leading the non-violent agitation marches etc., satyagrahis didn’t run away even when they were severely attacked with clubs, shot etc. They were willing to give up their lives for the cause.

    But in Lanka, our Tamil leaders just simply gave up the fight and ran away when attacked by thugs at the Satyagraha. We had spineless politicians trying to apply Gandhis techniques of nonviolence for which one needs the courage of kamikaze pilots.

    I dont think Prabhakaran was a racist as some of the earlier Tamil politicians were. He was one pointedly focused on fighting FOR the rights of the Tamils and not AGAINST the Sinhalese as a race. But, somewhere along the line, this message got messed up.

    I think at some point, he started to cave in under pressure of some of the Tamil racist goons (most probably not the ones on the battle field. Diaspora tigers?) in the movement to take the fight to the common Sinhala masses.

    The attack on the Temple of Tooth was monumentally moronic. I cannot believe this idea was hatched by Prabhakaran. Also, there were some senseless, violent, terrorist acts such as the train/bus bombings etc. that killed many innocent civilians. It is very difficult for me to believe these acts were masterminded by Prabhakaran, but all of these happened under his watch.

    For all the discipline Prabhakaran tried to instill in his cadres, sometimes some of these cadres went on violent fits of rage (like the earlier undisciplined Sinhalese soldiers in Jaffna) and killed innocent Sinhalese civilians in the border villages as revenge, for which, ultimately he had to be blamed.

    The chasing away of Jaffna Muslims was also moronic.

    The attack on the Temple of Tooth and border villages gave the Singhalese soldiers the reason to fight back. In my view, this is why Prabhakaran lost the war. Not the killing of Rajiv Gandhi, RAW, the Chinese weapons etc.

    Prabhakaran was audacious and utterly sincere. And what a fight he put on! B. Raman says he made meek and mild Tamils stand up and fight for their rights. .

    I can never agree for picking up arms and killing as the means for achieving peace. Arms are necessary only as a means of self defense against brutes.

    But this is not the hour for putting ourselves on pedestals and start calling him a megalomaniac, terrorist etc., and role his body in mud in our speech like savages. Let us be sensitive for the loss of his family and at least have the courage to pay respects due to a dead warrior and move on.

  276. Ernest Macintyre says:

    Dear DBS,
    Yours will be an excellent general sketch (and I believe you will fill up to write a bigger work later) , to join others like it, for peope who will soon, absolutely certainly, venture on plays, novels and films on this man. Well done.

    Ps: As a footnote may I mention that Amartya Sen thinks that one should not dislodge the Geetha from the whole in which it is contained, the Mahabaratha. He says that when you look at the enormous number of dead bodies strewn across the containing work, after the battle, it tilts the argument in favour of Arjuna’s first instincts.

  277. Ananth says:

    Praba is our hero and he he will come back soon.

    Sick person , called himself “DBSJ” wasting this pace.

    Go see or read “Waiting for Godot” while waiting……….DBSJ

  278. banu says:

    Yes he was dedicated to his cause and commited in the early years but sadly as with many people he too went mad with power and became a prisoner of his own thoughts and dreams.I do not celebrate anyones death but the world is a better place with out him.

  279. Janaka says:

    Tamils should be ashamed for supporting this barbarian to destroy their civilisation.

  280. Tamil says:

    Genocidal Lankas’s only wish is to eliminate all the Tamils form their homeland and invade it with sinhala masses.

  281. Jayan says:

    I don’t know why Tamils, Sri Lankan and Indian, have such a large following for a phycopathic murderer.

  282. Jayan says:

    I am a passionate reader of your site, though I seldom leave comments. Due to indepth details of inside information about most important issues, though not always unbiased in my openion, you have a large audiance. Your site is an ideal platform to promote peace and harmony among all communities in Sri Lanka and the entire world. On this Earth Day (5th June), we, homo-sapiens should think about the world at large, rather than Tamil, Sinhala or any other community.

  283. Kejan says:

    Thank you DBS.

    I learnt a lot about Praba

  284. DPL Costa says:

    Thanks for this article DBS.Wonderful

  285. Heinrich says:

    There was never a democratic revolution in Ceylon. A backward country with communalist political backbone. Prabaharans life and his intellectual capablities are designed in this context.

    He was attracted with events in history fitting to the needs of the LTTE but he never had any historical understanding of politics. He never seriously studied contempory history. He limited himself to the history of Jaffna Kingdom and South Indian mediviel rulers.

    This mediviel style peasent outlook dominated in his political decesions.

    Your theory of Clint Eastwood may be correct but he had great difficulties in diffrentiating Indian freedom strugle with Rommels Nazi invasion in Africa.He was highly impressed by Rommels military tactic but he failed to understand the political ideology.

    First time I heard that he read Time and News Week but this didm’t help him to understand the politics of Western countries. Till last minute he believed one or other country woul bail him out of hell. He had burnt all the bridges with the killing of Rajiv Ghandhi, no one trusted him.

    He had one quality that was his refusal to fully adapt to any government. He accepted the Indo-Sri Lankan pact and took the revenge. He had a pact with Premadasa and eliminated Premadasa. But this politics sealed his fate . He signed the cease fire with Ranil and helped Mahinda to come to power and everyone knows the rest.

    He was told even by his enemies as a great military genius but can anyone explain why he and his entire military leadership was cornered in the same hole?.

    In any case the LTTE deafeat was primarily political. The blind faith in the “International Community”. Rather than REALLY depending on the masses he believed in political manovering with India and Western countries and paid the price.

  286. UMAKANTHAN says:

    Prabhakaran is a hero and Tamil people like him.The reason for the Sinhala rant is understandable as he was the one who showed the Tamils that they could stand like David against the Goliath.

    He built a military from nothing and without any support from any other government. He created an administration and developed arts and literature.

    He also developed a strong social liberation in the Tamil homeland and created progressive culture.
    The huge number of woman cadres and inter marriage between castes and reigons are some of the highlights that brought aboout a radical change in the way people saw the futire of Tamil people.

    The Upper caste Tamils felt the pain as they saw the Dalits of Eelam getting more dominant in a liberation struggle.

    Whilst most so called progressive elements living abroad were critical of the LTTE or Prabhakaran they were themselves involved in petty politciking and rampant infighting.

    As a Bangalore Tamil Prabhakaran was a symbol of resistance and he will continue to inspire us in India and abroad. He is like the Netaji he wanted to be.

    Regarding about how Prabhakaran died, he died a hero as he could have had a 1000 chance to run away from the field. He steadfastly stood there and fought. To think he wanted to escape at the 11th hour is utter loss of imagination of the Sinhala mind.

  287. Puththalamborn says:

    Hello follow Tamils who wrote comments above……..
    I have to point this out to you that we as Tamils dicriminated against university selection, developments in North and East. No access to manufacturing sectors. No promotion if a Tamil did not pass Sinhala exams. What do you think about these things. All of you must focus on these things before critisizing Prabhaharan.

    Prabhaharan was made like this by Sinhala Governments and its politicians. He was not born like this. The year year VP was born his father must have been going through hell at his work place. VP’s father left his job because he had to pass Sinhala exam inorder to get promoted. So, When VP’s mom got pregnent with VP his fathers mental status attributed to this. All fellow Tamils. THINK …………DO NOT critisize for the sake of critsizing. VP is MADE NOT BORN……..

  288. RS Wickramasinghe says:

    University Teachers for Human Rights is reporting (claiming “top-level sources in the military) that Prabhakaran was captured, tortured and killed, most probably at the 53rd Division base in the presence of a Tamil government minister and a military commander, and that his young son was shot in fron of him.

    DBSJ, Any thoughts on this?

  289. Keatharan says:

    Dear DBSJ!

    If we want true honour to VP.We must towards a free Tamil Eelam. He still alive with his through our actions.

    Keatharan

  290. kalu says:

    Prabhakaran and the entire LTTE suffered inexplicable miseries for the srilankan tamils. They were very near to what they wanted to achieve. Selfishness of Murali & the Tsunami made him weak; infrastructurewise; cadrewise. Murali gave all intelligence matters to srilanka; gave east to srilanka. LTTE fought with a Big Srilankan Army sided with China, Pakistan, etc. A great tamilian lived and died for srilankan tamils. The cadres were sincere and dedicated. We must salute them always. Of course, mistakes happened. See post-war scenario in srilanka. Tamils lives as slaves.

  291. tamilselvan says:

    DBJS nice article….:) All non-dravidian stop criticizing the war hero of the pure Dravidian race….its the bravest race ever and supposed to rule the world not the stupid… Sinhalese…or inferiors aryans in india who support them….

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