Effort to bestow martyrdom on Prabhakaran after Osama’s death
Posted on May 3rd, 2011

Philip Fernando

Death of Osama bin Laden set off theorists venting their versions of the afterlife awaiting the dead. Michael Roberts declared in his Thuppahis Blog on May 2nd thus: “This victory for Obama (hunting down Osama) is also a victory for Osama. Having trod the path of mujahid in the path to Allah, he is now a shaheed at the feet of Allah.” Roberts also threw in a line indicating that Tamil heroes and heroines seemed even better “being fused with transcendental forces.” Such parallels being drawn would put Velupillai Prabhakaran on par with Osama for that coveted celestial spot. However the megalomaniac Prabhakaran may require much more than theological revamping to qualify for such glory.

ƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚ Roberts tried hard in the past to boost Prabhakaran going for reincarnated divinity as prevalent in South Indian religious tradition. He stated “There were, of course, other facets to this vast investment in rites of commemoration: MƒÆ’-¾ƒ”š‚vƒÆ’-¾ƒ”š‚«rar Nal on 27 November (by Prabhakaran) every year served as a means of legitimizing the Eelam project.” Roberts had also stated that among the Tiger leadership, the cyanide vial is both instrument and faith.

ƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚ Roberts walked on thin ice collecting data pointing to deliberate attempts made by Prabhakaran towards godliness. He had stated that Prabhakaran by 2001 had built “21 immaculately maintained tuyilam illam, or “resting places” for the Tiger fallen. Roberts overlooked that those burial grounds in reality were the resting places of misguided youth -some forcibly conscripted to be sacrificial offerings for the a mythical Eelam.

ƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚ The cemeteries were mere avenues to cleanse the blood marks off the ruthless enforcers of murder ad mayhem-the instruments of expiation to rid guilt off their hapless psyches. The fallen Tigers by definition were fodder for Prabhakaran presenting himself as the newly incarnated version of divinity.

ƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚ Precursor of separate state in India

ƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚ Roberts also gloated over Prabhakaran’s heroes day addresses as a recruiting tool. However, we know for a certainty that Prabhakaran’s November 2008 hero’s day address put paid to his day-dreams. No sooner he asked loudly (and idiotically) why over 60 million Indian Tamils do not have a state of their own the Indian leaders sobered up from their slumber.

ƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚ Indian leaders realised instantly that Rajiv Gandhi being pathetically slaughtered by Prabhakaran goons was deliberately masterminded: a telling precursor of a separate state in Indian soil. Rest is history.

ƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚ Besides, the most ardent fans of the Tiger Supremo even in Tamil Nadu could differentiate between a crazy smuggler gone berserk from a freedom fighter.

ƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚ Trying to infuse a noble vision into the head of an unscrupulous and mundane bandit-an airhead to all intense and purposes– operating a small band of suicide bombers masquerading as a invincible fighting machine was something only Roberts would even venture as a hobby from his Thuppahis outfit in Adelaide.

ƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚ Cult of martyrdom

ƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚ Roberts waxed eloquence as to how the LTTE had seized the opportunity and built up a cult of martyrdom as a mobilisational device, cementing force and precise weapon. He argued that the manner in which some Tamils merge their being with that of the icon of their hearts, be it MGR, Eelam or Prabhakaran had never been understood by the West.

ƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚ The Westerners are ruthlessly more pragmatic than that with no respect for ancient theological cannons spewed out by Roberts. A contingent of 40 super sleuths descended on the Osama compound in Pakistan and just delivered the final blow to a man elusive for a decade.

ƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚ Theorising about Prabhakaran attaining divinity while still being alive was worthless pursuit. It was sheer folly when the Tamils were held in bondage by the vile Supremo. Doing it after Prabhakaran ate the dust at Nandikadal is mind-boggling-the height of illogicality.

ƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚ Prabhakaran legacy never showed any partiality towards social welfare, schools, markets or even place to debate issues for the Tamils. The Tamil population in the North was in fact looked after by the Sri Lankan government faithfully sending economic support despite the hostility of the Tigers. What had occurred in two years after the death of Prabhakaran seemed a thousand times more productive for the Northerners-just visit the North-I am certain Roberts did that already.

ƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚ Roberts draws attention to certain popular folk cults in Tamil lands, which he believed represent a seedbed of evocative symbols that, in specific contexts, can impel, or be made to impel, individuals in sacrificial directions. Prabhakaran never came even close to such loft ideals because be bludgeoned his own people with ruthless tyranny for 26 years.

One Response to “Effort to bestow martyrdom on Prabhakaran after Osama’s death”

  1. gunarat Says:

    Has Michael Roberts, the lad from Galle, cease to be a historian?

    Has he assumed the role of God to elevate bin-Laden and Prabhakaran to the transcendental status of deities?

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