Join the Socialist Party Join us today!

Printable version Printable version

Facebook   Twitter

Link to this page: https://www.socialistparty.org.uk/issue/774/17112

From The Socialist newspaper, 17 July 2013

'Black July' - Sri Lanka 1983 and the beginning of civil war

This month marks the anniversary of the 1983 'Black July' anti-Tamil pogroms in Sri Lanka organised by the United National Party (UNP) government of president JR Jayewardene.

Up to 3,000 people were killed in a single day. Thousands of homes were damaged and destroyed as were many workplaces. Over 150,000 people lost their jobs and over 100,000 made refugees.

The pogroms followed the UNP's brutal suppression of the 1980 general strike - a key turning point in Sri Lanka's modern history. A deeply unpopular government unleashed Sinhala nationalism to undermine any resistance to its neoliberal policies.

The defeat of the strike, which weakened the trade union and workers' movements, meant that the government now had no opposition.

The 1983 pogrom was not however an ethnic riot where Sinhala masses spontaneously attacked Tamil minorities. It was an attack organised by the capitalist ruling class. The killings also ensured that the Tamil armed struggle got massive support from Tamils.

An ensuing civil war culminated in May 2009 when the Sinhala chauvinist regime of President Mahinda Rajapaksa brutally crushed the LTTE (Tamil Tigers) separatists. An estimated 40,000+ Tamils were massacred in the closing stages of the war and the Tamil-speaking areas of Sri Lanka are now under military occupation by government forces.

There have also been assassinations of government opponents and attacks on democratic rights aimed at stopping any resistance. None of this has deterred David Cameron who plans to attend the Commonwealth heads of government meeting there in the autumn, lending legitimacy to this murderous regime.

Nonetheless there is growing anger of working class and oppressed people at the regime's policies, including a one-day general strike on 21 May 2013 organised by trade unions against a huge hike in electricity tariffs. In fact the 21 May strike, although not a complete success, was the first national strike since 1980. It represents the beginning of a new era for the Sri Lankan working class.


The Committee for a Workers' International (CWI) is the socialist international organisation to which the Socialist Party is affiliated.

The CWI is organised in 45 countries and works to unite the working class and oppressed peoples against global capitalism and to fight for a socialist world.

For more details including CWI publications write to: CWI, PO Box 3688, London E11 1YE.

email cwi@worldsoc.co.uk

The CWI website contains news, reports and analysis from around the world: www.socialistworld.net

Donate to the Socialist Party

Coronavirus crisis - Finance appeal

The coronavirus crisis has laid bare the class character of society in numerous ways. It is making clear to many that it is the working class that keeps society running, not the CEOs of major corporations.

The results of austerity have been graphically demonstrated as public services strain to cope with the crisis.

The government has now ripped up its 'austerity' mantra and turned to policies that not long ago were denounced as socialist. But after the corona crisis, it will try to make the working class pay for it, by trying to claw back what has been given.

  • The Socialist Party's material is more vital than ever, so we can continue to report from workers who are fighting for better health and safety measures, against layoffs, for adequate staffing levels, etc.
  • Our 'fighting coronavirus workers' charter', outlines a programme to combat the virus and protect workers' living conditions.
  • When the health crisis subsides, we must be ready for the stormy events ahead and the need to arm workers' movements with a socialist programme - one which puts the health and needs of humanity before the profits of a few.
Inevitably, during the crisis we have not been able to sell the Socialist and raise funds in the ways we normally would.
We therefore urgently appeal to all our viewers to donate to our special coronavirus appeal.

Please donate here.

All payments are made through a secure server.

My donation

 

Your message: 

 


In The Socialist 17 July 2013:


Socialist Party news and analysis

'We've had enough' - All strike together!

Urgent - trade unions must build a political voice for the working class

Fire cuts, pay cuts, pension cuts, job cuts

MPs' pay to rise to 74,000...

Another drugs company scam

G4S tagging scandal: another failure of privatisation

Them & Us


International socialist news and analysis

USA: Zimmerman, Trayvon and racism

'Black July' - Sri Lanka 1983 and the beginning of civil war


Socialist Party feature

End violence against women!


Socialist Party review

The story of the Tolpuddle Martyrs


Socialist Party workplace news

Lecturers in Wales expose working conditions

Victory for teachers at UEL

Equinox workers strike again

Fight Royal Mail privatisation!

Workplace news in brief


Socialist Party reports and campaigns

Greens rejected in Brighton

Bedroom tax non-payment soars in Scotland: Stop evictions

Councils: Don't do the Con-Dems' dirty work!

'Sick Of Your Boss?' week of action reports

Durham Miners' Gala shows mood for new party

Campaigning against anti-LGBT bullying in schools

Lincolnshire - save our libraries

Building the Socialist Party


Readers' comments

Who are the real criminals?


 

Home   |   The Socialist 17 July 2013   |   Join the Socialist Party

Subscribe   |   Donate   |   PDF  |   ebook






Related links:

Sri Lanka:

triangleBuilding a working-class movement for Tamil rights

triangleSri Lanka: Presidential election sees return of dictatorial Rajapaksa clan

triangleKashmir crisis: Stop the attack on democratic rights

triangleTamil Solidarity Day: Linking up oppressed people's struggles

triangleIndia: Modi victory underlines need for real socialist fightback

War:

triangle75th anniversary of the Attlee Labour government

triangleReading Socialist Party: Unite against terror, racism & war

triangle1920s Britain: A "country nearer Bolshevism than at any time since"

triangleA new world order - global reconstruction after World War Two

CWI:

triangleIndia: Fighting the curse of capitalism and coronavirus

trianglePeter Hadden remembered

triangleA CWI May Day 2020 statement

Tamil:

triangleProtest against Modi's racist law

triangleBuilding Tamil Solidarity with youth and the unions

Strike:

triangleTower Hamlets council strike

International

International

24/6/20

South Africa

South Africa: Building jobs and living wage campaign

10/6/20

France

France: 20,000 rally against Paris's killer gendarmes

10/6/20

US

Black and white youth rise up against racism - US protester speaks to the Socialist

3/6/20

USA

USA - another cop killing of unarmed black man sparks widespread protests

31/5/20

US

Outrage spreads globally following US police murder of George Floyd

27/5/20

Hong Kong

Chinese state's imposition of draconian law reignites Hong Kong protests

27/5/20

Lebanon

Economic collapse leads to renewed protests across Lebanon

20/5/20

US

Trump, coronavirus, capitalism, and the presidential race

6/5/20

India

India: Fighting the curse of capitalism and coronavirus

6/5/20

Trump

Trump puts profit before safety (again)

6/5/20

US

US: Trump's public health cuts have condemned thousands worldwide

29/4/20

May Day

A CWI May Day 2020 statement

29/4/20

Ireland

Irish police use Covid-19 emergency powers to disperse Dublin shop workers' protest

22/4/20

USA

US private healthcare system in meltdown

14/4/20

Coronavirus

Rapacious capitalism and the spread of coronavirus

triangleMore International articles...


Join the Socialist Party
Subscribe to Socialist Party publications
Donate to the Socialist Party
Socialist Party Facebook page
Socialist Party on Twitter
Visit us on Youtube

LATEST POSTS

CONTACT US

Phone our national office on 020 8988 8777

Email: info@socialistparty.org.uk

Locate your nearest Socialist Party branch Text your name and postcode to 07761 818 206

Regional Socialist Party organisers:

Eastern: 079 8202 1969

East Mids: 077 3797 8057

London: 07748 534 891

North East: 078 4114 4890

North West 079 5437 6096

South West: 077 5979 6478

Southern: 078 3368 1910

Wales: 079 3539 1947

West Mids: 024 7655 5620

Yorkshire: 077 0671 0041

ABOUT US

ARCHIVE

Alphabetical listing


July 2020

June 2020

May 2020

April 2020

March 2020

February 2020

January 2020

2019

2018

2017

2016

2015

2014

2013

2012

2011

2010

2009

2008

2007

2006

2005

2004

2003

2002

2001

2000

1999