The Grumpy Sociologist has a great post that explains the legacy of colonialism in the current conflict in Sri Lanka between the Tamil Tigers and the government. As with many new wars, this one is also devastating on the civilian population. And as with many stealth conflicts, it is poorly reported in the media (actually, I have only seen it reported on a regular basis by the British press, and to a lesser degree by the French press):
The Tamil Tigers (LTTE) are actually known for their quasi-scientific approach to recruiting child-soldiers. But what is especially interesting and well-developed in TGS’s post is the legacy of colonialism in ethnic divisions (something not unlike the Rwandan case… and we all know how that ended).
Former colonial powers do not like to be reminded of the way they used divide-and-conquer tactics to control their colonies by pitting ethnic groups against each, usually by promoting one above the other, thereby fostering long-lasting resentment. The effects of these policies still pervade many of the current conflicts on the Global South.
Read the whole thing.