Having spent my childhood during the Sri Lankan civil war with the LTTE, I could say that it was one of the most horrific years of my life. There was chaos everywhere; suicide bombers blowing up packed commuter trains and buses in Colombo targeting innocent civilians and the Eastern and Northern villages were destroyed; civilians were brutally killed. We were dreadful to hear the ‘Breaking News’ jingle, as it meant that something ghastly had happened. Naturally, we viewed every Tamil with fear, especially of women clad in a saree, with a red bindi on the forehead.
In 2009, with great relief the civil war came to an end to its 25-year-old war. It was simply a bloodbath; many of our noble soldiers had to give up their lives for the country and their parents, spouses and children still suffer to this day.
The country enjoyed peace and a certain amount of ‘forecasted prosperity’, yet we had a long way to go. While the country tried to rise on its feet, a group of terrorists were plotting their horrendous crimes in the name of religion. Finally, they did strike, and it was a complete blow to the entire country.
Gone are the days when we travelled with peace and complete tranquility. Now we are constantly on the lookout for dodgy individuals, backpacks and we have our ears trained to hear any loud noises, ambulance sirens, our eyes glued to our phone screens for any hot news.Victims still hospitalised, and some mourn for their lost loved ones. They are still stuck in a gruesome world; a bloody world with contorted and grotesquely swollen bodies, who recognized to be their loved ones. One father was clinging on to his dead daughter unable to bear the grief. So pure, so small but gone too soon. Some are yet to be found and they have been declared, ‘missing’ because there is no body to be found. At least a finger, a leg? Alas! How can you find it in the massive pile of mutilated body parts, belonging to various victims? In some houses, the entire family has been wiped out. Sad as it sounds, the only comforting thought is that maybe that all of them are in a better place under the blessing of god.
The government is playing the blame game. What do they have to worry about anyway? Average citizens are the primary victims of war- a hate filled political game. Their children in prestigious schools/universities abroad, with lavish houses and enough money for a decade. This is all a game for them. A blood-curdling game that has and will cost innocent lives.
Our brave soldiers are protecting us with all they got, with their life in line. They silently longed for their parents, yearned for their loving wives and children amidst all chaos.
A 25-year-old war ended, and have we not learnt anything from it?
Did we take this hard-earned peace for granted?Did we forget the horrors of the war so soon?
Do I want this to be my child’s future; Constantly worried that he/she will face a brutal fate and always looking over my shoulder?
Did we leave our country in the hands of negligent leaders?
And finally, do we allow them to play this ‘game’ once again?