Even the stalwarts in government ranks predict that if contending parties in the present conflict do not take steps back, that a serious crisis is possible. Obviously they are concerned that a crisis in the state, could lead to a revolutionary situation.
Yes, they do not see the possibility of a social revolution; but they do fear that the coming crisis could create anarchy of many possibilities, which could destroy the populist political structures that support them. They cannot easily blame the western powers for what is happening; as they used to do in the past. It is true that Minister Wimal Weerawansa is engaged in propaganda on behalf of the regime, claiming that there is an international conspiracy. But even he cannot directly blame ‘Yankee Imperialism’ for the problem they are face. The fact that the IMF and global powers support them in their so called development programme is evident even to the villagers.
Hence they cannot fool even village masses, with that stale story. I believe that President Rajapaksa is concerned about the developing situation. A serious crisis that could affect the image of the regime is not what he desires at the moment.
The discussions taking place in the international arena are not pleasant to him; and many bourgeoisie democratic organizations are preparing to confront the government in the coming period. So it is wise to take a step backwards. That is the advice given by all those who stand for the present system. Leader of the opposition Ranil has done his duty as a prominent leader of the Liberal democratic International to advise the President to abide by the agreements with in the Common Wealth. However, can the President heed the advice of the liberal leaders!
Today what we witness is the power of the Sinhala chauvinists within the government. Never in the history of Sri Lanka, has this reactionary force assumed such influence in the seat of power. Bandaranaike was tormented by early leaders of this menace, and he had to give his life for betraying them by signing the BANDA - CHELVA pact. Sirimvao shifted in the opposite direction to canvass an alliance with the left parties. However, power of Sinhala chauvinists was shown in the way the constitution was formulated in 1972. Tamil was sent out of the constituent assembly and the result was discrimination against minority religions and Tamil language. No attempt was made to propose any devolution of power, in that constitution making process. NM, COLVIN AND SA, the giants of the left movement, became jokers in the history by their compromise on these issues, at a time when the workers movement was undefeated. The 1972 Sri Lanka Constitution which was enacted without participation Tamils, repealed the protection afforded to minorities by the 1946 constitution, and proclaimed that the ‘Republic of Sri Lanka shall give to Buddhism the foremost place’ and that ‘it shall be the duty of the State to protect and foster Buddhism’ thus discriminating other religions. However, in 1986 the regime of JR was able to counter this reactionary force, and implement the 13th amendment, which brought in equality of citizenship and languages with the devolution of power to provinces. Though power sharing given in the amendment is not adequate, it remains a mile stone in the struggle to defeat the hideous Sinhala chauvinism.
In spite of this protracted struggle to defeat Sinhala chauvinism and to bring about a voluntary unity among all nationalities in Lanka, we find today this menace lurking behind President Mahinda as a powerful influencing force. This reactionary force is demanding Mahinda to go forward to crumble CJ and to throw her out, without any mercy. They insist that any concession given to the CJ will be seen as a defeat by the patriotic forces in Lanka. In other words if President Mahinda retreats, they will come out to disturb the stability and create an anarchic situation. It is possible that Mahinda chooses to go along with the Sinhala chauvinists and try to establish a repressive dictatorship; but he will have to face the undefeated Trade Union movement and rising democratic forces both here and in the north.