There’s no unwinnable war:
Only a mission to crush terrorism
The LTTE’s so called Senior Editor of Viduthalaipuligal, identified
as Ravi from the official media organ of the Tiger organization was
quoted in a newspaper last week as saying the Government troops were
fighting an unwinnable war.
This is a wrong notion that is being believed even at international
level that a war has been declared by the Sri Lankan Government.
I would say the notion is misleading and false in belief. Since
Independence, no Sri Lankan Government has declared war on its people
for sixty long years.
Time and again, we’ve seen extremist elements and armed Tamil groups
declaring war on legitimately elected Governments in this country. The
Janatha Vimukthi Peramuna(JVP) declared guerilla type war twice in 1971
and 1988. Armed Tamil groups began to declare war from 1976.
The JVP entered the mainstream of politics in the final decade of the
previous century. Many other armed Tamil groups too gave up violence and
entered the democratic stream towards that period.
The only armed Tamil terrorist group which had declared war against
all Governments from 1976 and continues the war is the LTTE.No Sri
Lankan Government had declared war against even on the LTTE.
It is the LTTE which forced successive Governments to resort to
defensive action. Do the world and the LTTE want a legitimately elected
Government to turn a blind eye when it declares war against it, time and
again, moving away from peace talks? Peace talks were used by the LTTE
to strengthen it militarily and to use passage for arms.
A Government is vested with the responsibility to protect its’ people
and the territory. Therefore, it is compelled to take defensive action
against any enemy who threatens the people and the territory of the
The LTTE’s so called Senior Editor, Ravi was quoted from an interview
on a Tamil Radio (Radio not named) as saying the Sri Lankan troops would
be foolish to approach Jaffna as they would fall prey to the LTTE
The question that arises is whether Ravi, the so called senior
editor, is a journalist or a fighter of the LTTE to make such a
statement. Do not this Ravi know that the Sri Lankan armed forces
liberated the East from the LTTE, according to a deadline set by the
Commander-in-Chief, President Mahinda Rajapaksa?
In July 2006 President Rajapaksa,as Commander-in-Chief of the Armed
Forces, ordered his troops to liberate the East within a year. That was
accomplished before the deadline.
Ravi claims that Prabhakaran was guiding all the deployed units of
the LTTE to meet battalions of the Sri Lankan armed forces in the event
Government troops entered Jaffna. If that statement is true, then where
was Prabhakaran, and what was he doing with his so called units when the
armed forces liberated the East?
In the same breath, Ravi admits in that Radio interview that the Sri
Lankan Armed Forces have added new brigades to launch surprise attacks
on LTTE fighters. Ravi also claims that the Sri Lankan troops were
trying to create dissension between the LTTE and the Tamils. The armed
forces engaged in a battle have no time to play games between the LTTE
and the Tamil people.
It is a known fact that the Tamils living outside the LTTE held areas
dissent the LTTE. This was amply demonstrated during the liberation of
the East. Hundreds of innocent Tamils held hostage crossed borders
without fear when the East was being liberated.
This is even witnessed today in some parts of the Wanni. Not only
Tamil civilians but young LTTE cadres too have surrendered to the troops
stating they were forcibly kept in the battlefront by the LTTE. Even
women Tiger cadres in bunkers have sent letters to their parents
expressing disgust over the way they are being held and treated by the
The International Human Rights bodies should bear in mind that
terrorism is trying to over take democracy even in powerful nations in
the West. Even the mightiest nations have been struck by terrorism. Big
Brothers like the United States and Great Britain have not been spared.
The danger of terrorism was felt only when they came under attack.
The US then chose to chase behind the Al Qaeda, the dreaded terror
outfit of Bin Laden. There’s hardly any difference between the Al Qaeda
and the LTTE. If these Human Rights bodies conduct a proper evaluation,
the dreaded terror acts of LTTE terrorism over the past three decades,
will prove that the LTTE is deadlier than the Al Qaeda.
World leaders who realized the threat of terrorism after being
attacked in their respective nations, called for global support to
eliminate terrorism. They banned several terror organizations as a move
in that direction. But, did it achieve any fruitful results?
Many terrorist organizations turned into Rehabilitation Units on
those soils to fund terrorism. These lapses have led to the increase of
terrorist activity worldwide. Even the almighty super powers now look
incapable of uniting democracies to battle terrorism. Why?
On one hand they call for unity to eliminate terrorism and, on the
other they scream for human rights violations ignoring such violations
committed by the terrorists. Do not these double standards promote
The LTTE virtually operates its’ network from the West. And mostly
from countries from where they have been banned. Those nations are well
aware that LTTE leaders live and operate from their soil under the guise
of asylum seekers.
The West should not adopt double standards when it comes to terrorism
in poor or developing nations. Where did the so called LTTE Theoretician
Anton Balasingham live till the time of death? He lived in Great
Britain, a country where the LTTE is still banned. Balasingham flew to
the terror stronghold of Wanni and peace talks from London.
Did the British authorities try Balasingham in the way they have
tried and jailed Karuna? Britain itself is a nation inflicted by
terrorism. LTTE cadres have openly flouted British laws. But Balasingham
lived a free life in Britain. A ban on terrorism should not be limited
to mere words or paper.
The international Human Rights Bodies and Country Reports prepared by
nations hit by terrorism, scream about human rights violations here.
What have they done about the child combatants recruited by Prabhakaran?
Isn’t recruitment of under aged children a human rights violation? When
Olara Otunu of the United Nations came here, Prabhakaran promised to
stop child conscription.
In contrast, the LTTE leader began to recruit more and more children
to his terror outfit. The UN just turned a blind eye. From Otunu to
Allen Rock and Kofi Annan to Louise Arbour, the LTTE leader had
conscripted thousands and thousands of innocent Tamil children. The
tragedy is that all Human Rights Organizations are blind towards such a
dastardly crime that destroys future generations of the Tamil community
in Sri Lanka.
Then what about the countless bomb explosions caused by the LTTE
which killed thousands of men, women and children in all parts of Sri
Lanka? Then the number of Tamil and Sinhala political leaders killed by
the ruthless LTTE? Is the world blind or has it forgotten history?
Apart from tragedies caused in Sri Lanka, what about the killing of
the former Indian Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi? How many Indian troops
have been killed and how many have been maimed for life by the LTTE?
Have the LTTE not targeted the Diplomats living in Colombo?
Has the international bodies which cry for human rights forgotten the
deadly attack on the aircraft that carried Diplomats to the East last
The German Diplomat was wounded and the US Ambassador, Robert O’Blake
had a miraculous escape.
Following that attack, Robert O’Blake, then new to Sri Lanka, said
the LTTE may have been unaware of his presence in the aircraft.
Certainly being a “Super Boy” from the world’s “Super Power” Blake, may
have been prompted by nature to make such a statement.
But, for the LTTE there’s hardly any difference between Rajiv Gandhi
and Robert O’Blake when it comes to launch attacks. Aren’t such attacks
on Diplomats human rights violations ? The modus operandi on how human
rights bodies assess or evaluate human rights violations seems to be a
method better known to them.
In the backdrop of a history of thirty years of terrorism, the
Government is engaged on a mission to free the nation of that menace.
Considering the past, torn apart by LTTE violence, Defence Secretary,
Gotabhaya Rajapaksa, himself a battle hardened soldier who fought the
LTTE for many years in the past, assured the nation and the people that
the present regime would not pass on the terrorist war to the future
generations of this country. President Mahinda Rajapaksa had asserted
that his determination was to establish permanent peace through a
political dialogue to end the ethnic strife.
The terrorism of the LTTE and a resolution to the ethnic problem are
two different entities today. Earlier, the majority of the Tamil
community saw and linked terrorism also as a part of the ethnic problem.
But, today, after many Tamil armed groups have entered the democratic
process, the Tamils at large have realized that terrorism and a peace
process are two different entities. Because they do believe today that
the LTTE is the stumbling block towards a peaceful resolution to Tamil
EPDP leader Douglas Devananda and TULF leader V. Anandasangaree have
substantiated this position with Devananda stating that peace was a
distant dream as long as Prabhakaran was allowed to live. Anandasangaree
too had expressed similar sentiments in a different tone.
Defence Secretary, Gotabhaya Rajapaksa who has seen the ruthless
terrorism of the LTTE to his naked eyes and experienced it on the battle
front has expressed a sincere sentiment to save future generations from
the clutches of extremist LTTE terrorism. The people and the nation have
been yearning for such an expression in the form of a pledge over the
past three decades. The Defence Secretary believes that the LTTE must be
defeated at all costs to pave the way for a peaceful resolution to the
ethnic crisis. Contrary to the belief of the so called senior editor of
the LTTE Ravi, the security forces are confident of defeating the LTTE.
Today, the people and the nation too want LTTE terrorism uprooted to
protect the future generation of all communities living in this country.
Peace and India
For the Government to embark on a mission to establish peace by the
people and the nation, it needs the support and cooperation of all
sections of the society.
The people are ready to support the Government in that direction as
they did when the East was liberated. They peoples support alone for a
Government cannot exercise the process into a reality. Aren’t 225
people’s representatives cast with that responsibility to turn peace
into reality? If these people’s representatives are genuinely interested
to bring peace to the people, they should join hands leaving aside petty
In fact, all these men and women in that August Assembly have
witnessed how much the people and the nation have bled and yet bleed.
The question they should ask themselves now is-”Should they indeed
bleed?” The time is not opportune to dredge up the past to live
eternally in the past debating shortcomings which have led to the
present crisis. Instead, they should draw their attention to the urgent
task of seeking peace to this island torn by LTTE terrorism. Political
parties representing Parliament should bear in mind that good
neighbourliness with our immediate neighbours is an essential component
in the pathway to find a peaceful settlement to the crisis here.
Today, we see some political parties and their leaders making
statements against our immediate neighbour India when it comes to
discussion over the 13th Amendment, which is proposed as a base towards
a resolution to the crisis. It must be recalled that all fears about an
Indian plan to integrate then Ceylon with India was eradicated in 1951
when it was proposed by Dr. Pattabhi Sitaramayya, President of the
Indian National Congress. Dr.Sitaramayya elucidating his statement in a
speech in Bombay said-”India must sooner or later enter into a treaty
with Ceylonese people so that Ceylon may become an organic part of the
Indian body politic”. He also added that he considered India and Ceylon
are one and recalled that in his Memorandum on redistribution of
Provinces in India in 1916, he suggested that Ceylon should be
integrated with India while Burma may be separated. But, in
1951,Dr.Sitaramayya confessed that he did not wish to suggest any such
opinion unless Ceylon suggested it.
When Dr. Sitaramayya made his confessional type statement in 1951,the
late SWRD Bandaranaike who later founded the SLFP claimed that such a
suggestion by Dr.Sitaramayya was neither desirable nor
necessary.Mr.Bandaranaike told the President of the Indian National
Congress that India and Ceylon were the best friends and
added:-”Although Ceylon is a small country, its’ people have always been
jealous of their sovereign rights for which in the long history of this
country they have always fought and striven. Having once again regained
our freedom and sovereignty it is not at all likely that the majority of
the people of this country will submit to the type of subordination
which obviously Dr.Sitaramayya has in mind”.
Our politicians who represent the people should read history
concerning our neighbourly nations. India upheld the position taken by
the late SWRD Bandaranaike with due respect. It has recognized Sri Lanka
as an Independent sovereign nation.
Therefore, the issue of Indian domination on our soil does not arise.
Political parties and their leaders should make statements with
responsibility to prevent damage that would be caused to good
neighbourliness with India, the ‘Big Brother’ in the region.
The challenge to restore peace must be met by all political parties
inside and outside Parliament. A correct decision towards such a
concrete direction should be met with confirmation to start a stable
negotiation process to achieve peace. All political parties are bound to
honour its’ loyalty to the nation and the people.
The common vision is the need to build a non-racist society, a stable
nation with peace and normality. Democracy could only be strengthened by
such moves. Then the definition of good governance could effectively be
visible. Such a society and a nation could only be built by a protracted
process and not by a confrontational system in politics.
The time has come for all politicians and the people to decide
between self and the nation. What the country needs is a balance of
sacrifices to survive.
The LTTE terrorism has increased defence expenditure many a fold over
thirty long years. Political party leaders must realize that the rise in
defence expenditure had caused harm and disparity to the distribution of
wealth, employment opportunities, expansion of health and education
facilities of the society and the people at large. Political party
leaders should learn from the past. Experience is the best Teacher to
rectify errors of the past.
Unity among all politicians will herald hope for a better Sri Lanka.
It is only then we will not leave the LTTE terrorist war to our future
generations as stated by Defence Secretary, Gotabhaya Rajapaksa.When Dr.
Sitaramayya made his confessional type statement in 1951,the late SWRD
Bandaranaike who later founded the SLFP claimed that such a suggestion
by Dr.Sitaramayya was neither desirable nor necessary.Mr.Bandaranaike
told the President of the Indian National Congress that India and Ceylon
were the best friends and added:-”Although Ceylon is a small country,
its’ people have always been jealous of their sovereign rights for which
in the long history of this country they have always fought and striven.
Having once again regained our freedom and sovereignty it is not at all
likely that the majority of the people of this country will submit to
the type of subordination which obviously Dr.Sitaramayya has in mind”.