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Terrorism and Guyana
by Gokarran Sukhdeo

Guyana Journal, October 2012

Earlier this year, frustrated by the apparent nonchalance of the President Donald Ramoutar to deal firmly with corruption, and enthused with optimism that the opposition, armed with greater parliamentary powers, would abandon their former X-13 type approach to politics, I considered for the first time in my life to join a political party.

I had followed the career of Ramjattan for years and was very impressed by him ever since he, as a teenager, and I did five courses together at UG. He was a bright kid. That year he took home 20 points, and I who thought I was good, scraped 17.

Khemraj and Raphael were making all the right moves. They were changing the political landscape of Guyana, doing what Walter Rodney and Cheddi Jagan both aspired to achieve. Then came on board their bandwagon some rotten apples. Fred Kissoon, Sasenarine and Asquith Rose, despite their chronic objectivity deficiency, being apparently unschooled in etiquette, obviously boorish in their writings, and each with their own psychopathic baggage, did not do much irreparable harm to the party. It was Nigel Hughes and Moses Nagamootoo who, in my opinion, have not only highjacked the leadership of the party, but are striking nails into the AFC coffin, while David Hinds is doing the same for APNU. 

The modus operandi of the opposition in Buxton, Linden and as recently in Agricola fit snugly the definition of modern terrorism. To name the main criteria: demonizing the good guys – including police and soldiers, and baptizing the thugs as heroes; employing high levels of drama and theatricals; maintaining a reserve army of impoverished semi-illiterates to do their biddings; destruction of property, roads and bridges; brutal mass massacres to instill fear in the population and erode confidence in legitimate government; incitement and leadership from behind with racial and political invectives; attracting media and international attention such as the staging of Agricola while an international commission of inquiry is present.

True, from a Machiavellian perspective as I am certain Hinds, Hughes and Nagamoottoo are aware, the use of terrorism is an effective instrument of change. Perfected by the Israeli, the Zionist methodology became a revolutionary model to be emulated and embraced by genuine freedom fighters the world over. The Brazilian revolutionary theorist, Carlos Marighela, advocated the same strategies in his famous manual Handbook of Urban Guerrilla War. Another book The Revolt published by General George Grivas in Cyprus was actually a study of Israeli terrorism.

In Algeria the National Liberation Front (FLN) in revolting against French rule studied the Zionist methodology and adapted it to fit their circumstances.

Even Yasir Arafat of the PLO and Nelson Mandela of the African National Congress (ANC) have admitted how their respective organizations have benefited from studies of the Zionist/FLN methodology.

But what these aspiring terrorists in Guyana do not understand is that terrorism can consume itself as per power hungry Robespierre and the French Revolution; it is only effective when the enemy or threatening ideology is foreign to the national culture, and it fails miserably as instrument of ethnic genocide. In British Guiana the infamous X-13 plan was a classic terrorist manifesto aimed at unseating a “communist” government, but failed and continues to fail even to this day because it advocates and employs the use of cultural and racial genocide. Like Robespierre, the architects of the X-13 and the current perpetrators of it do not have the genuine welfare of the people and country at heart. All they want is power.

So far, only the modified Marxism as taught by Rodney and Jagan offers the most reasonable and comprehensive solution to the race, class and power struggles in Guyana. All other approaches are bound to fail. So for now I will stay a supporter of the least of all evils.