Maran's story and why I hate war.
This last week the DCA, (Diverse Cultural Association) hosted a forum on "Christianity, Racism and King's". And, if you can remember back far enough, our I.S conference tackled some pretty big themes in this area.
As someone from Sri Lanka, I want to follow up on Maran’s story, the journalist who shared his experiences about fleeing that country, told during the I.S conference. I’ve come across lots of stories like those of Maran’s although I have not personally faced the same circumstances. I realized, as I sat listening to Maran's story, that many at King's would know very little about Sri Lanka. So a quick history lesson.
The LTTE (Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam) fought against the Sri Lankan government to create an independent Tamil state in the Northern and Eastern part of the Island. After 26 years of military campaigns, the war ended in 2009 bringing an uneasy peace. There were many reasons behind this fight but a strong one was the unfair and unjust treatment that Tamils felt they received from the majority Sinhalese government. If you would like to find out more, check out:
http://www.bbc.com/news/world-south-asia-11999611 - a quick country profile from the BBC
http://www.cfr.org/terrorist-organizations-and-networks/sri-lankan-conflict/p11407 - a longer in depth analysis from The Council on Foreign Relations.
As a Tamilian, I understand the frustration and anger that fuelled the civil war. However, I personally did not support the LTTE. Many died as a result of the conflict and there were atrocities on both sides committed. People lost their belongings and family, children ended up on the street as orphans and those put into camps had no access to proper care and medicine. These are just some of the horrors.
Maran's story was one story of the devastating effects of war, any war. In my opinion, shedding blood can never be a solution.