Thursday, 19 May 2011

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Last stages of war, Darusman’s laxity and UNP’s hopes

The veteran Sinhala journalist Wasantha Priya Ramanayake in his weekly article for the Sinhala daily ‘Lankadeepa’ has come up with the last days of the humanitarian operation carried out by the Sri Lankan security forces, compassion shown by the Sri Lankan security forces to the Soosai’s family, as well as to the family of Thamilselvan, parents of Velupillai Prabhakaran, and many other LTTE leaders, several hundreds of Black Tiger suicide cadres, and the failure of controversial Darusman Panel to comment on these events and the UNP leader Ranil Wickremesinghe’s double standard during the war and on the controversial Darusman Report.

Captioning his article as ‘A trap of the opposition’ he vividly and superbly narrates in the article details of many events relating to the last stages of the war, and the hopes held by the Opposition UNP to come to power through the defeat of Sri Lankan forces by the LTTE.

Brighter future for IDP children. Picture by Chaminda Hittatiya

Given below is the full text of the article rendered into English.

It did not take much time for the Sri Lankan Navy to identify that the boat that was sailing in the deep sea was a suspicious boat. When it was further observed using the powerful surveillance equipment the Navy possessed, it was found that there were even children in the boat. They then came to the conclusion that it was a boat belonging to a group who were fleeing from the country. However, Captain of the Naval Unit gave a strict order not to shoot at the fleeing boat and capture those on board somehow.

Speed boats went into operation and the naval detachment finally became capable of rounding up and seizing the fleeing boat. It was after everyone was disembarked from this fleeing boat the Navy Unit found that it was the family of the LTTE Sea Tiger Wing Chief Soosai’s family who were fleeing.

If the Navy would have opened fire at Soosai’s wife and his children, they would have died. They were fleeing in this manner with bundles of currency notes and several kilograms of Gold, to somehow save their lives, while Soosai was in the battlefront. It was Soosai who had ordered them to flee.

Naval Unit

When they were questioned where Soosai was, they revealed that he was in the battlefront in Pudumathalan. When asked whether he was not coming, they said that he will not come. The Captain of the Naval Unit then asked his wife whether he was still fighting the Sri Lanka’s forces she replied in the affirmative.

Then the Captain told her to ask him to come and surrender without being foolish. He gave his mobile phone to Soosai’s wife as requested her to speak to Soosai and ask him to come. But he did not come. His decision was not changed.

If Soosai came on that day he will be alive today. Finally Soosai’s family members were treated well by the Naval officers and after offering them food and whatever they wanted they were handed over to a detention camp.

The wife of Thamilselvan and his children also came in this manner. They came with ordinary displaced people and sought protection in a detention camp. Prabhakaran’s mother and father, and several LTTE leaders including the media spokesman Rasiah Ilantherian, Daya Master were also surrendered to the Sri Lankan forces during the humanitarian operation and settled in the detention camps.

None of these facts, the real truths, are included in the controversial Darusman Report. It was our soldiers who provided medical treatment to Black Tiger suicide cadre boys and girls, and provided all humanitarian requirements during the humanitarian operation. There is no doubt the visuals relating to these humanitarian activities were watched by many thousands the world over through TV channels.

Compassionate soldiers

Darusman has not seen about 300,000 who came in this manner, some only dressed in rags and some carrying whatever they could take possession and how they were treated humanitarianly and with compassion by our soldiers. But they included in their report things we have never seen and we cannot believe. Their report did not include any good things done by our compassionate soldiers or the government. It is due to this that controversial Darusman Report can be termed as an incomplete misleading one.

We can never expect such a thing from Darusman and his ilk. No one believes that a humanitarian operation of this magnitude ended so peacefully. There could have been some mistakes.

Ultimately even our Foreign Ministry has also failed to present a detailed white paper on this humanitarian operation. If there was a detailed white paper on the humanitarian operation our friendly nations today would have had documentary proof to challenge the controversial Darusman Report.

International community

Due to this lapse the international community has only the controversial Darusman Report whether it is right or wrong. This is not a pleasant status when there is strong international force against Sri Lanka. It is due to this reason we say that a country’s foreign relation matters should be handled by persons who are not self centred and arrogant. We still do have talented people who are experienced in handling matters relating to foreign relations. It seems that these omniscient do not know the art of getting their assistance at times of need.

Even during the 4th Eelam war President Mahinda Rajapaksa and the government got isolated at certain times. The Opposition was waiting for an opportunity to capitalize on the infight of the government. They were waiting to come to power over that.

Main issues

That is why they questioned whether our forces were going to Medawachchiya by saying that they were going to Kilinochchi. That is why they denigrated the march to Alimankada (Elephant Pass) to that of going to Pamankada. For them Thoppigala was just a ‘jungle area’. The speech made by the Opposition leader in Galle disparaging the Toppigala victory clearly showed their objectives. There was no such thing from the American leaders in their operations against bin Laden. Clinton of the Democratic Party did not ask George Bush of the Republican Party whether he did it or not. What Barak Obama terminated last week was carrying forward the fight started by George Bush.

After Bush the fight was finished by Obama not by blaming Bush for his lapses. Bush did not ask Obama why he went to Pakistan in search of bin Laden saying that they were going to Afghanistan. Therefore we cannot compare what happened in America with what happened in Sri Lanka.

During the fourth Eelam War our Opposition got split. When the opinion being held by the Opposition leader and his close supporters about the war was not acceptable, the deputy leader of the party Karu Jayasuriya and a group of several others joined the government to strengthen the government. The group including Sajith Premadasa got isolated. After the war Karu Jayasuriya went back to the UNP.

Obama informing about bin Laden’s death to Bush is correct. Both main political parties of America had taken the identical stand on main issues. We did not have this culture in the fourth Eelam war because of Ranil Wickremesinghe and his group.

This same UNP leader is presently attempting to place the government in trouble even on the controversial Darusman Report. The stand of the government is to totally reject the controversial Darusman Report and not to respond to it.

But the Opposition leader says that strong responses should be made at appropriate times. What the US Asst. Secretary of State Robert O’Blake who visited our country recently said is almost similar to what Ranil Wickremesinghe says.

Joint statement

The Ranil-Blake meeting took place before Ranil Wickremesinghe made this statement. If the government went to make a response that government would plainly get into Moon’s action.

If we respond as Ranil says that other side will also present counter claims. Ultimately this correspondence and the report could end up in a trap of the United Nation’s observation panel. We do not know that Ranil may be thinking that by these methods the government will land in a muddle. Ranil is an expert in such games.

The Opposition leader says that the government has got entrapped in quandary with the controversial Darusman report and says that it is the biggest issue faced by the country after India violated our air space and dropped ‘Parippu’ in the North.

However, he is not willing to sign a joint statement even at this time. It seems that he is dodging the issue. These days he is in Bhutan. The government may have thought that they could issue a joint statement with the signature of the Opposition leader. Normally any country expects such a joint stand on major issues. But we do not know that whether Ranil is thinking that because of this report that the government will get isolated internationally, it will get economic sanctions imposed on it, thereby it will become weak and will fall down.

Political culture

The political culture of our country has been framed in a despicable manner to consolidate the power gained by all means and to get back the power lost even by externally initiated moves such as controversial Darusman Report.

Therefore our political parties are yet equal to undeveloped embryos. Other than any other person the behaviour of Ranil in similar incidents like this is very special. It may be his talent to mislead and misuse the international lobbies. In indulging in politics this should be understood.

He should not be underestimated. Therefore, may the God’s blessing be on those who recently were feeling happy about Ranil Wickremesinghe being in the position of leader of the Opposition.

It is better even at this late stage to announce to the world through a white paper about the humanitarian operation carried out at the last stages of the war. This is not an advice that would entrap the government.

After that a political mechanism could be evolved for the problems in the North based on the recommendations of the Lessons Learnt and the Reconciliation Commission. It seems that the international forces are trying to push the government to that position.

In the meantime some sections in the government are trying to compare President Mahinda Rajapaksa to the Venezeulan President Hugo Chavez and the Libyan leader Col. Muammar Gadaffi. These are attempts to further antagonize the West.

This is a completely wrong move. If the comparison was made to at least with the Evo Moralez of Bolivia it could have been better. People who made this type of comparisons consist in all governments. It is difficult to say whether they do it honestly or with some other motives. In the past when such persons were identified as CIA Agents the governments they represented were no more.

Courtesy: Asian Tribune

 

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