It is a truth universally acknowledged, that a guerrilla group in possession of a national flower, must also be in want of a national anthem. The Tamil Tigers, having selected the poisonous Gloriosa Lily as their national flower last year, are now holding a contest for a new patriotic song. [Since 1990 they've been raising their flag to the appropriately titled "Look the Flag is Rising"]
Tamil Tiger rebels in Sri Lanka are advertising for “bards and minstrels with patriotic fervour” to write a catchy national anthem. The anthem should “symbolize the history of our struggle and victories to future generations,” the rebel statement says.
The lyrics should extol the “virtues of those who sacrificed their lives in Tamil struggle, celebrate the unique qualities of exclusiveness and resourcefulness of the Tamil homeland, and manifest the resoluteness, dedication and the aspirations of the Tamil people for freedom and dignity.”
“It should contain 18 lines – catchy and lively and in immaculate Tamil.”
Budding poets have until 27 November, “Tamil Eelam Martyrs Remembrance Day”, to come up with a suitable anthem. [Link]
Personally, I think that they’re missing an important opportunity here. Not only should the anthem be catchy and lively, but the entire process of anthem selection should also be appositely hip. To that end, I suggest the creation of Eelam Idol, a TV show designed to ensure that the resulting anthem is the people’s favorite. Hosted by MIA, Simon Cowell and a high Tamil Tiger official, the three judges could offer ascerbic commentary on the performances of the singer songwriters who volunteer to perform their proposed new version of the national anthem. The show would get killer ratings, both in Jaffna and abroad, and the new anthem would instantly top the charts! Guys, if you’re reading this, the idea is yours gratis. No really, there’s no need to meet for lunch …