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  1. Nadesan

    I am afraid you CANNOT talk of the Sinhala mindset WITHOUT talking of the Tamil mindset when it comes to Sri Lanka. In spite of what is claimed here for Dharmapala, people supported P. Ramanathan against a sinhalese in the early 1900s legislative council election. That was because CASTE was more important than RACE and religion. Already, Arumuga Navalar had started the HINDU consciousness complete with the caste orthodoxy and Dharmapala simply followed him with the Buddhist consciousness. Our turbaned Tamil leaders of the early 1900-1930 were more interested in caste, and Ramanathan even led delegations to England demanding that caste be included in the constitution. G. G. Ponnambalam wanted to break the hold of the turbaned Colombo-7 leaders and he, watching what was happening in Europe of the 1930s, imported race – i.e., Tamil Communalism in a big way in the 1930s. Banda’s Sinhala communalism was largly a reaction to G. G. Ponna, since Banda was a more urbane western democrat who was actually NOT a chauvanist, as you can well see from his speeches in the state council and in Parliament in the 1950s.
    So, Michael Roberts, once-upon-a-time historian, has become a journalist who uses the cliches of political journalism and he is willing to write what the common cliches dictate him to write.
    JUST TOO BAD.
    Simplification of history is falsification of history. We Tamils have to be particularly careful about the falsity of our own accepted history as this has been warped by the ITAK-TULF-LTTE propaganda of the last 50 years, leading to the concept of “exclusive Tamil homelands”, a mindset which was the true cause of the war and the unfortunate destruction of the strong status enjoyed by the Tamils in the professional, mercantile and other segments of society in the 1950s, and even well into the 1970s.

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