The Operational Code of the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam
The Tamil Tigers were one of the most organized, focused, and influential organizations in Asian politics during the last three decades. Throughout the existence of the organization, the goal of the LTTE was to establish a separate Tamil state – Tamil Eelam - comprising the Northern and Eastern parts of Sri Lanka where Tamil-speaking populations were dense. The Sri Lankan civil war, which ended in May of 2009, claimed tens of thousands of lives, displaced hundreds of thousands of residents, and impeded the economic well-being of Sri Lanka. This thesis employs the operational code analysis as a way to better understand the character, behaviour, and norms of the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam. An additional purpose of this thesis is to test the utility of this model in the case of a terrorist organization such as the LTTE. The Operational Code Analysis framework was premiered by Nathan Leites in his two-part study of the Bolshevik Party, and was subsequently revived and re-imagined by a number of academics. The iteration of the Operational Code framework used in this thesis is a qualitative analysis which is comprised of ten questions: five ‘philosophical’ and five ‘instrumental’. This examination reveals that while this model has much to offer in analyzing this terrorist organization, it is in some ways a flawed method of exposition. However, the model produces unexpected insights about the stated beliefs of the LTTE.
DegreeMaster of Arts (M.A.)
CommitteeStory, Donald; Handy, Jim; MacLeod, Allan
Copyright DateJuly 2013
Operational Code Analysis