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Archive for November 14th, 2007

Two light aircraft belonging to the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) were detected flying towards Anuradhapura early morning today. SLAF radar at Vavuniya AFB detected the incoming aircraft which triggered the activation of the air defense system. SLA soldiers stationed in an around Anuradhapura area opened fire at the aircraft but according to our information they were unharmed. SLAF immediately scrambled several aircraft to intercept the tiger light planes but by the time they were airborne the tigers had managed to evade pursuit for a 7th consecutive time. Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs) of SLAF too were deployed to identify the landing location of the planes.

Meanwhile the Sri Lanka Army (SLA) intensified its attacks along the Wanni forward defense lines after suffering from a bloody nose in an all out attack on the LTTE FDL on Muhamalai few days ago. Instead of mass troop movements, army has reverted back to the strategy of small group based attacks which have once again proved their effectiveness. 38 LTTE cadres have been killed in incidents at Wanni FDLs during last 5 days with minimal casualties to SLA troopers. SI (Special Infantry) and SF (Special Forces) attack teams have carried out several successful strikes against LTTE targets in the general area of Omanthai. Intensity of their attacks was such that at one point an 8 man SF team overran a small sized LTTE camp in the FDL. LTTE cadres deserted their “Vietnam Base” (situated between Omanthai and Mullikulam) in face of the SF advance.

Meanwhile fighting was reported in the general area of Trincomalee during the last few days. 13 LTTE cadres including the deputy leader for Trincomalee were reported to be killed in these attacks.

(http://defencenet.blogspot.com)

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The LTTE today stayed away from Diwali celebrations as part of the mourning for its political head S. P. Thamilselvan in a raid by Sri Lankan Air Force.

“Our leader (V Prabhakharan) as well as our people are mourning the death of the late political head Thamilselvan and this is the most subdued Diwali in my life with people staying away from celebrations,” LTTE spokesman Rasiah Illanthirayan said.

Tamilians are celebrating Diwali today while it will be observed in north India tomorrow.

Thamilselvan, and five other leaders of the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) were killed in a raid by Sri Lankan Air Force in the rebel-dominated northern Kilinochchi on November 2.

Illanthirayan said the LTTE elusive supremo, who otherwise confines his Diwali celebrations to giving money to young children, maintained a very low key today.

“There are no cracker sounds, no sweets and we are all mourning the death of Thamilselvan,” Illanthirayan said.

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Clashes erupted between security forces and LTTE Tigers when a group of Tigers attempted to breach the forward defense line at Sirinavakulam in Mannar early morning today killing at least two Tiger cadres, the military said.

No soldiers were injured in the attack.

Security forces conducting a route patrol at Irruppukulam in Trincomalee yesterday night killed three Tigers in a confrontation, security sources said. Troops also recovered three T-56 assault rifles.

Troops advanced ahead of the FDL at Muhamalai in Jaffna yesterday and overran three LTTE bunkers killing five Tigers including a Tiger leader known as Kadir Neelawan, defense sources said.

Meanwhile security forces handed over the bodies of six female Tigers, who were killed yesterday in a confrontation with the troops at Periyathampanai in Vavuniya to the ICRC officials.

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Sri Lanka Marxist People’s Liberation Front (JVP) Propaganda Secretary Wimal Weerawansa making a special statement in the parliament yesterday pointed finger at UNICEF for abetting terrorism.

Weerawansa said that UNICEF which states that it acts on behalf of the children, on several occasions between 19th July, 2000 to 22nd July, 2006 had given Rs.11,327,784.00 to Tiger terrorists.

“All this money has been given to tiger terrorists through Tamil Rehabilitation Organization (TRO), a front organization of the Tiger organization,” he said.

Weerawansa accused that a Land Cruiser vehicle bearing Reg. No. WPGN 1074 that belonged to UNICEF was made available for the use of the Tiger organization and said that still this vehicle is not with the UNICEF.

He said that UNICEF has become an institute that employs educated members of the Tiger organization mentioning a number of names of locals and foreigners.

The JVP MP further stated, “Usually vehicles belonging to UNICEF are not heavily checked. Very often parcels are sent in vehicles going to Killinochchi. Parcels are also sent from Killinochchi to Colombo. No one knows what is sent and brought between Colombo and Killinochchi.”

“Doesn’t an organization that has given millions in money to Tiger terrorist organization through TRO, give more vital things to Tiger organization,” he questioned.

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Sri Lankan military on Monday claimed that 10 LTTE cadres were killed in fighting in the north even as an international think-tank has said lasting peace would not be found until Sinhala nationalism and the grievances that give it power are understood and addressed.In the report, “Sri Lanka: Sinhala Nationalism and the Elusive Southern Consensus,” the International Crisis Group, trans-national NGO engaged in the study of conflicts around the globe, has called a new approach to factor in what is termed as “Sinhala nationalism.”

The report dwells on the theme of nationalism of the country’s largest ethnic community and its relationship to the conflict.

The ICG says recent history shows the Sinhalese are not unalterably opposed to a fair deal for the minority Tamils but competition between their major parties, the United National Party and the Sri Lanka Freedom Party, together with the violence and the intransigence of the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam, have led President Rajapaksa to adopt a hardline nationalist approach.

“Until the sources of Sinhalese nationalism are taken more seriously, it will continue to challenge attempts to produce a political settlement.

Although President Rajapaksa states his commitment to a political solution, his decision to rely on hardline Sinhala nationalist parties committed to a strictly unitary state structure instead of considering substantial devolution of powers to the regions has left him with little option other than to try to defeat the LTTE militarily,” it says.

It said the All-Party Representative Committee set up in 2006 by the President is developing constitutional proposals but the limited progress may unravel due to Mr. Rajapaksa’s insistence on the unitary state.

“Moving away from the unitary state is the only viable basis for resolving the conflict politically and opening up a new, broader political agenda for constitutional reform endorsed by Muslim, Tamil and Sinhala parties”, says Alan Keenan, Crisis Group’s Senior Analyst in Colombo.

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P Nadesan, the Tamil Tigers’ new political commissar, wants to reach out to India and mend fences with it, says a Sri Lankan Tamil MP, who talked to him last week.

“Nadesan has always been of the view that the Sri Lankan Tamil movement led by the LTTE should have the support of India. He reiterated this position when we met him after the funeral of Tamilselvan,” Suresh Premachandran, a Tamil National Alliance (TNA) MP told Hindustan Times in Colombo on Sunday.

“Apart from Nadesan other senior political leaders of the LTTE like Balakumar also told us how important it was to cultivate India,” Premachandran said.

V.Balakumar, who is an ace motivator of the LTTE’s cadres, including suicide cadres, was a leader of the leftist Eelam Revolutionay Organisation of Students (EROS) which had merged with the LTTE in 1988.

Premachandran, who was among the ten TNA MPs who attended Tamilselvan’s funeral at Kilinochchi, said that Nadesan’s views were important because he not only enjoyed Supremo Velupillai Prabhakaran’s trust, but was close and respected enough to discuss matters of high political importance with the Leader.

The LTTE and its supporters in Sri Lanka and abroad, view the situation in neighbouring Tamil Nadu as changing in their favour after the killing of Tamilselvan in the Sri Lankan Air Force’s attack on Thiruvaiyaru near Kilinochchi on November 2.

Barring the AIADMK and the Congress, other Tamil Nadu political parties had condoled the death of Tamilselvan. They said that he was a political man and a negotiator, who should not have been killed deliberately. M.Karunanidhi, the Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu and President of the DMK, had penned a poem on Tamilselvan praising his courage in standing up for the Tamil cause. By releasing the poem through the government Information Department, he had given it the stamp of an official statement.

AIADMK leader J.Jayalalitha castigated Karunanidhi for praising a leader of a banned organization like the LTTE while holding a constitutional office like Chief Minister. She threatened legal action also. Karunanidhi retorted saying that he had done nothing wrong by condoling the death of a fellow Tamil. Taking the cue, other “Tamil” political parties like the Pattali Makkal Katchi (PMK) and the Viduthalai Siruththaigal (Liberation Panthers Party) and non-political groups like the Dravida Kazhagam (DK) came out in support of Karunanidhi and flayed Jayalalitha for her “anti-Tamil” stance. The pro-LTTE Marumalarchi Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (MDMK) led by V Gopalswamy alias Vaiko, condoled Tamilselvan’s death in emotional terms though it was Jayalalitha’s ally.

Fearing isolation on the “Tamil issue” in a state dominated by ethnic politics, Jayalalitha quickly issued a statement claiming that Tamil blood ran in her veins too, even though she was born outside Tamil Nadu in Mysore. She has apparently given up the idea of going to the Supreme Court after seeing the general political mood in the state on the issue of Tamilselvan.

The media in Tamil Nadu except a few, had described Tamilselvan as a political person, a peace negotiator with a perpetual smile, and not as a military man who deserved to he killed in the on-going war. The killing was described as a blow to efforts to being peace to the island.

As one commentator said, a martyred Tamilselvan could turn out to be more useful to the LTTE than a living Tamilselvan.His killing is considered a major achievement in South Sri Lanka, but it could prove to be a bane in the coming months, if the pan-Tamil sentiment, now becoming evident in Tamil Nadu, is whipped up to a crescendo as it was done by the political parties there in the 1980s.

TNA MPs are hoping that the leaders of Tamil Nadu, though badly divided on other issues, will come together to speak with one voice on the Sri Lankan issue, as they did in the 1980s.

“They have spoken up for us individually and separately, but they will be effective only if they come together on one platform,” Suresh Premachandran said.

Importance of Natesan

The LTTE’s new political commissar may well be a miniature Anton Balasingham, the LTTE’s ideologue, political advisor and chief peace negotiator, who died last year after more than 30 years of service to Prabhakaran. Balasingham could interact with Prabhakaran on political issues, especially international issues, on an equal footing, something few others could claim to have done. Nadesan could do the same, Premachandran said.

“Nadesan, who set up the LTTE’s police force, had a political background before he joined the organization. He was a Leftist, a supporter of the Trotskyite Lanka Sama Samaj Party (LSSP). And it is noteworthy that Prabhakaran has been including Nadesan in the LTTE’s teams for  peace talks with the Sri Lankan government. He has been a member of the LTTE’s team in interactions with foreign diplomats and other dignitaries when these came calling at Kilinochchi,” the TNA leader pointed out.

In contrast, Tamilselvan had no independent political experience, having joined the LTTE as a soldier at 16. Again, in contrast to Tamilselvan, Nadesan is a trilingual person, being able to speak in Tamil, Sinhala and English ( though, as in the case of Tamilselvan, he is assisted by Panchatcharam alias George, who enjoys mastery over English and Sinhala besides Tamil).

Nadesan’s real name is Palasingham Mahendran. Before he joined the LTTE, he was a seaman, and then a constable in the Sri Lanka police. As a constable he had served in Colombo and married a Sinhala girl from Matara in the deep south. She lives with him in Kilinochchi, despite her husband’s advocacy of Tamil separatism and terrorism. Writing in The Nation on Sunday, DBS.Jeyeraj said that the couple enjoyed political rapport as she too was a leftist.

According to Jeyaraj, policeman Nadesan had made friends with the LTTE’s Jaffna leaders while he was serving in the Valvettithurai police station in North Jaffna. In course of time, he helped the LTTE attack the police station by secretly supplying it with a diagram of the police complex. Suspected of involvement in the attack, he deserted, and the LTTE whisked him away to Tamil Nadu where he began doing political work for the LTTE. When the LTTE and the Indian Peace Keeping Force (IPKF) began to clash militarily in October 1987, Nadesan participated in the fighting. But interestingly, when wounded, the IPKF took him to India for treatment, Jeyaraj says.

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Each day, more than 140000 men and women put their lives on the line to protect the motherland. Although the invaluable deed of defending the nation at the cost of their lives can never fully be repaid, there still are ways you can help make their lives better.

“Be together for all” is a new housing project which’s aim is to build 50000 houses for security forces personnel. As you may understand, a project of such large magnitude will require a considerable amount of money. You can help ease the financial burden by donating to the “Be together for all” fund.

You can make your monetary contributions to the following bank account:

  • Bank of Ceylon Corporate Branch
  • Account Number: 7040000

You can view the promotional video via this link. Official MOD page for the project can be found here.

(http://defencenet.blogspot.com)

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