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Will there be a Violent Resurgence of the LTTE soon?

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The Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam(LTTE) was virtually demolished in May 2009  by the Sri Lankan armed forces in a series of battles in the Karaithuriapatru AGA division of  the Northern Mullaitheevudistrict.

The LTTE leader Veluppillai Prabhakaran and almost all his senior deputies and commanders were killed along with thousands of cadres in the fighting that also incurred a large number of civilian casualties.

More than ten thousand LTTE members  surrendered to the armed forces and were detained at special camps. A few thousands of these ex-Tiger cadres have been rehabilitated and released. The rest will be released gradually.Legal proceedings will be initiated against about a thousand hard-core members.

The important outcome of the Mullivaaikkaal debacle in May 2009 is that the fighting has come to an end. It is noteworthy that the Tiger brand of violence has ceased in Sri Lanka. There has been no LTTE  sponsored violence in any part of the Island for the past Eighteen months.

Even as the Country heaves sighs of relief over the absence of Tiger inspired violence and moves forward sluggishly to heal the wounds and scars of war there does loom large the question  whether the current peace is permanent or merely an interlude.

At the heart of this question is the concern or apprehension that there could be a resurgence of the Liberation Tigers in the near future leading to a resumption of violence again.

What is worrisome is that  a revival of LTTE violence  could upset the slow but steady return to normalcy being experienced by the Country in general and the  Tamil inhabited regions in particular. The limited progress towards lasting peace and true reconciliation would receive a major setback.
More alarming and dangerous is the irredeemable harm such an eventuality could cause to the Sri Lankan Tamil people. Decades of war conducted in the Northern and Eastern provinces has battered and shattered the Tamil people. They are now pitifully struggling to rise from the ashes and dust and emancipate themselves.

A resumption of political violence spearheaded by the LTTE could alter the situation drastically. The Sri Lankan state would most definitely crack down hard and resort to iron – fisted rule again. Apart from the process of normalization being reversed the state could also embark on some extreme measures aimed at transforming the current demographics of the North and East.

Ground realities however are against a Tiger revival. Given the fact that the security apparatus in the North and East remain intact and that the relationship between the people of those areas and the armed forces has improved considerably the prospects of  a LTTE resurgence seem remote.

Also the priorities of the Tamil people are rehabilitation, re-settlement and revival of economic conditions as opposed to resumption of violence. After decades of  armed conflict that has left them in ruins the debilitated Tamil people are in no mood for violence again though a few irresponsible  Tamil Parliamentarians do engage in chest thumping rhetoric.


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