Activism is a more civilized outlet for pent up indignation than militancy. Yet an entire generation of Tamils have grown up being more militant than activist. Events such as 1983 have terrorized most law abiding Tamils away from civil activism: placard-bearing demonstrators demanding equal rights for Tamils is not something you see often in Sri Lanka.
A Sinhalese dominated Establishment has not tolerated such things. The inevitable result: those who have the stomach for militancy take up arms; those who don’t have the stomach for it, provide support for those who do. This is what has happened today.
Help the Tamils move away from militancy and towards civil activism. Militarization takes so much away from a society. Many southerners who visited the North during the brief ceasefire (and shortly after the tsunami), reported that many of the LTTE guards they had to deal with had zombie-like faces that seemed to have not smiled in years. It wasn’t even anguish. It was almost a battle-hardened lack of emotion — the closest I could get to a description is “chronic rage”.
This does not characterize all Tamil youth. But the present generation of Tamil youth tend to have more faith in the fist than in the mind or the pen. Even when they do use the pen there is more attack-mode rhetoric than there are gentle arguments.