Malaya y Sri Lanka: ¿política comunitaria o guerra comunitaria?

La enconada guerra de terror en Sri Lanka -que fue la que prácticamente inventó la infamia de los ataques suicidas-parecía estar amainando últimamente. Pero la lucha entre la Presidente Chandrika Kumaratunga y el Primer Ministro Ranil Wickremesinghe, y el cisma al interior de los tigres tamiles amenazan con reiniciar la violencia. El duelo político se agravó recientemente cuando la Presidente, preocupada porque su rival, el Primer Ministro, era "demasiado suave" con los rebeldes tamiles, despidió a tres ministros y se apoderó de sus carteras. Ahora ella ha disuelto el parlamento y ha convocado a elecciones para abril, tres años antes de tiempo.

Después de haber vivido la guerra malaya de 1947-1960, a menudo me pregunto por qué ha sido tan difícil dar fin a la guerra en Sri Lanka. En apariencia, las dos guerras son similares en muchos aspectos. En Malaya, los chinos étnicos lucharon contra regimientos y la policía británicos y malayos, lo cual es comparable a la lucha de los tamiles contra los cingaleses en Sri Lanka. Al igual que a los tigres tamiles, a los comunistas malayos se les acusaba de terroristas, pero las bajas que infligieron fueron pocas en comparación con las muertes masivas que ambos bandos han causado en la guerra de Sri Lanka.

En ese entonces, las tensiones étnicas de Malaya generaron motines comunitarios en los que murieron tanto chinos como malayos. Sin embargo, nunca se permitió que se convirtieran en las abiertas matanzas comunitarias que la guerra en Sri Lanka ha producido frecuentemente.

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