A reply to The Economist:
Sri Lanka’s war - Dark victory
An article titled, ‘Sri Lanka’s War - Dark Victory’ in The Economist
of April 23 paints a gloomy picture undermining the success of the Sri
Lankan Government and the Army in the ongoing conflict.
If the Security Forces had not shown
any consideration for civilians the war would have ended
According to the article, “...In a rush to exterminate the Tigers,
the Army has shown a cruel disregard for Tamil civilians crowding the
battle field...” If the Army had not shown any consideration to the
civilians the war would have ended long ago. It had been dragging to
avoid civilian casualties.
The writer has ignored pictures splashed in local and foreign
newspapers and the clips from the Youtube where they portray the Army
providing food and water to the civilians, carrying children, supporting
the sick, the disabled and so on.
It adds, “...Since the breach of the earthbund hundreds more had been
killed or wounded...” UAV footages show how civilians escaping to the
Government controlled areas are fired by the terrorists killing or
If as the writer says, that the Army had been cruel there would’nt be
such an exodus of civilians running away from the terrorist occupied No
Fire Zone. Both the Indian Prime Minister and the Foreign Minister have
said, “...The LTTE should stop its barbaric acts to hold civilians from
the rebel held territory...”
Human Rights Watches and other pro-LTTE research Agencies who are now
shedding crocodile tears were passive onlookers when the Tiger cadres
were driving 200,000 or more civilians from pillor to post as the
terrorists were fleeing from the Army after the downfall of Kilinochchi.
So under present conditions it is the legitimate duty of any Government
to rescue hostages from terrorists.
With regard to his reference to NGOs it is an open secret that their
sympathies are with the terrorists.
A VVIP who visited Kilinochchi during the traditional New Year to be
with the combatting Forces was surprised to see no massive
infrastructure development projects undertaken despite NGO’s and INGO’s
operating in the Vanni for so many years. It is now common knowledge
that there are heavily secured luxury underground concrete apartments
built as safe houses for the LTTE hierarchy. The question is how did the
LTTE get all the raw materials for these structures?
He comments that, “... Some members of the Rajapaksa regime and
General Fonseka are Sinhala Chauvinists...” Sinhala chauvinists is a
common term used by the LTTE to get support from third parties. If
anti-terrorist is being chauvinist, then except pro-LTTE supporters
everyone should be branded with the same label.
The writer had been critical of former senior LTTE Commander and now
Minister Karuna, Minister Chandrakanthan, who was a former LTTE child
soldier and Minister Douglas Devananda for joining the Government.
Obviously the LTTE as well would have the same apathy towards them for
giving up terrorism and toeing the democratic line. What is wrong in
rewarding them for streamlining along the democratic process?
The US Secretary, Hillary Clinton’s controversial statement about
‘untold suffering caused by Sri Lanka in this conflict’ had been
highlighted by the author. With regard to her comment, The Washington
Times of April 26 editorialised (Tigers at Bay) that,
“...Hilary Clinton and European styled peace-makers are getting in
the way of Sri Lanka’s victory. The meddlers should let Colombo finish
off this menace...The Tigers deserve no amnesty nor mercy... The Sri
Lankans are winning; we should let them finish the job...We can only
imagine American satisfaction if we had Al Qaeda in this position...”
During the last 26 years, the Government had been spending more than
US $850 million a year to crush the world’s most brutal terrorists. Now
it is the end of the game with the Tigers in the jaws of defeat.
The terrorists and the pro-LTTE lobbyists who were desperately
turning the No Fire Zone into a powder-keg and threatening of an
impending blood bath and a humanitarian catastrophe had been boldly
diffused by the Government and the Army. Learning from past experiences,
the Government’s current strategy is to defeat the terrorists militarily
while simultaneously pursuing a constitutional settlement for Sri Lanka.
So it is not for a reputed international Journal like The Economist
to reverse Government gains and demoralise the Army and the people in
favour of the world’s number one ruthless terrorists.