Wednesday, July 19, 2006

Saw "No More Tears Sister" last night

Saw the PBS re-broadcast of the Canadian made doc No More Tears Sister last night. Sister is excellent. It tells the story of Dr. Rajani Thiranagama, a young Sri Lankan Tamil professor of anatomy, mother & human rights activist who was most likely killed by the LTTE/Tamil Tigers because of her non-violent, peace & justice demanding work. The doc is a good, relatively brief introduction to the violence that has been rocking Sri Lanka since the early 1950's, the volume of which grew massively after July 1983 or Black July when 1000-3000 (by most accounts) Tamils were killed by Sinhala mobs while the then government & police stood by & watched & in some cases aided in the killings & other violence against Tamils.

At present the LTTE runs a military dictatorship in some of the Tamil populated areas in the north of Sri Lanka and there are frequent clashes between the LTTE and the Sri Lankan government and its allied paramilitary groups. As it was pointed out in No More Tears Sister, the people who are suffering the most in this protracted war are poor Tamils. There is however armed resistance to the LTTE from w/ in Tamil society, a breakaway faction of the LTTE called the Karuna group are fighting the LTTE, most likely with assistance from the Sri Lankan government.

Sri Lanka is a nation that is in desperate need of peace. It is heartwarming to hear & see accounts of peace & human rights activists who do the impossible by calling on all combatants to value the lives of ordinary individuals & working to take care of the least able & powerless in a nation suffering from ethnic violence & terrorism. As No More Tears Sister points out, impossible & evil situations can produce extraordinary & good individuals, thus there is always hope.

- Sujewa

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