YESTERDAY the imperialist-backed Rajapakse regime was claiming to have killed the LTTE leadership, including Velupillai Prabakaran, and that the struggle is now over.
Its claims about the deaths of the Tamil leaders remain to be proven. However even if they are true, this barbarous regime will never be able to break the spirit of the Tamil people, and will never be able quench its desire and determination to win its right to self-determination.
In fact it will break apart first!
Already, in order to wage this desperate struggle to crush the aspirations of the Tamil people, Sri Lanka has been bankrupted and exhausted.
Rajapakse is desperately seeking a multi-billion IMF loan, which the whole world knows will have the most draconian conditions attached to it.
These will include a privatisation programme to sell off public assets to the western banks, and also the cutting of government workers’ wages.
Rajapakse’s need to crush all opposition to the war has led to the scrapping of democratic rights and the appearance of police-state death squads, administering ‘justice’ on the streets in white vans.
Many people are being held in jails and secret prisons without charge or trial. Well-known journalists who have become critical of this regime have been terrorised or murdered, including one who correctly predicted his own death and named who should be held responsible for it, Rajapakse.
Meanwhile the cost of living has doubled and millions of poor people cannot even afford to buy their staple diet, rice, while workers are threatened with unpaid ‘holidays’, and fear for their jobs.
Now the war has reached its climax and the armed forces, equipped by India, Russia, China and Israel and politically backed by the US and the UK have reduced the North East of the country into one big killing zone.
The scale of the devastation – achieved by constant shelling, mortaring, artillery fire, bombing and the use of cluster bombs and white phosphorus bombs – is devastating.
Before the murderous assault on the so-called ‘safety zone’, Rajapakse maintained that the number of civilians there was ‘only’ 70,000.
However up to Thursday, 247,908 civilians from the safety zone have been registered in the internment (concentration) camps of Vavuniyaa, Pulmoaddai, Mannaar and Jaffna.
Rajapakse was saying that there were ‘only’ 15 to 20 thousand people remaining in the safety zone.
On Sunday evening Colombo’s head of internment camps, Chandrasiri, admitted to more than 80,000 crossing over after the latest onslaught.
In fact, Rajapakse’s aim in quoting low figures was to minimise the food and medicine supply in order to starve the civilians out. Starvation is his weapon.
Now this critical situation over the whole of Sri Lanka has connected to a massive revolutionising of the hundreds of thousands of particularly young Tamils all over Europe and North America, who are going to become more and more part of the struggle.
It is now clear that to win the right to self determination is not just a military question, it is also a social question.
What is required is the mobilisation of the working class of Sri Lanka, Tamil, Sinhalese and Moslem to bring down the Rajapakse regime in a struggle to defend jobs, wages and basic rights, to bring in a Workers and Small Farmers Government.
The only way that the Tamil people will win their right to self determination is through a socialist revolution in Sri Lanka to overthrow capitalism and create the conditions where the Tamil people, if they wish, can form their own state.