News Item Times Online, 5 January 2018
Thirteen financiers accused of funnelling more than $15.3 million to the separatist group the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Elam (LTTE) will stand trial before a Swiss Federal Criminal Court on Monday, foreign media reported. According to a report in Swissinfo the accused are from Switzerland, Germany and Sri Lanka. Some are former members of the World Tamil Coordinating Committee (WTCC), which represented the LTTE in Switzerland until 2009, and include its founder, his deputy and the person in charge of finances.
Filed under accountability, asylum-seekers, economic processes, Eelam, historical interpretation, life stories, LTTE, military expenditure, power politics, refugees, Sinhala-Tamil Relations, sri lankan society, Tamil migration, tamil refugees, terrorism, the imaginary and the real, truth as casualty of war, world events & processes
Major-General Ranjit Nadkarni (Retd)**…… with highlighting emphasis and photographs being the additions by The Editor, Thuppahi.
Introduction: Having read and digested afresh, the article entitled ” How Sri Lanka won the unwinnable war” written by Serge de Silva Ranasinghe and then the lucid thoughts penned by Michael Roberts on this article, I got thinking on what were the issues other than those pertaining to Sri Lanka, which contributed to the defeat of the LTTE and a win for the Sri Lankan Armed Forces. Some of my reflections cover the International Environment prevailing during E War 4; the role played by India, Pakistan and China; the internal environment which dictated success; and the Strategic Blunders of LTTE leading to its defeat. These issues surely and certainly contributed to the winning of the so called unwinnable war’, notwithstanding the kudos heaped on the Sri Lankan Government and Armed Forces by both authors.
Thamililam in late 2007
The International Environment: It is unthinkable that Sri Lanka would have won the E War 4 had the international community especially India not made soft bleating sounds asking for the hostilities to stop. This is so because 32 countries had banned the LTTE and declared it a terrorist group inhibiting a more potent reaction from the Western Countries and the EU. This coupled with a very lukewarm reaction from Asian countries, enabled Sri Lanka to withstand pressure and carry the offensive to its logical conclusion. Continue reading
Filed under accountability, american imperialism, historical interpretation, Indian Ocean politics, law of armed conflict, life stories, LTTE, military expenditure, modernity & modernization, nationalism, performance, politIcal discourse, power politics, prabhakaran, Rajapaksa regime, security, Sinhala-Tamil Relations, sri lankan society, Tamil Tiger fighters, terrorism, war reportage, world events & processes
Rebecca Puddy in Adelaide, for The Australian, 27 September 2016, where the title is “‘Iron Man’ exoskeletons to give Diggers superhuman strength
Australian troops are set to gain superhero strength, with trials of the latest powered titanium exoskeletons likely to take place next year. Australian Defence Apparel chief executive Matthew Graham said the technology, which is being developed with the US Army’s elite special operations command, could then be rolled out to the general army in 2018. The custom-made titanium suit clips around the body, with its spine taking the weight of a soldier’s pack.
Victoria Cross recipient Dan Keighran with Australian Defence Apparel CEO Matt Graham in Melbourne. Picture: Aaron Francis
“Version one is not powered but we are currently working on a powered version for the US,” he said. “In the US, it’s called the Iron Man Project.” The powered suits sense muscle reflexes and activate to take the weight of the soldier’s movement. While the company featured its exoskeleton at a major gathering of military and defence industries in Adelaide this month, it could not be photographed, Mr Graham said. Australian war hero and winner of the Victoria Cross Dan Keighran said soldiers bore long-term physical damage from carrying packs that sometimes weighed more than their body weight. “Your knees and joints do suffer,” he said. “This technology doesn’t take away from any danger and as a soldier you’re still vulnerable. But where this will help is getting casualties out of hot zones, letting us do our job faster and being used for rehabilitation.”
Filed under Australian culture, australian media, economic processes, landscape wondrous, law of armed conflict, life stories, military expenditure, military strategy, modernity & modernization, performance, politIcal discourse, power politics, propaganda, security, the imaginary and the real, unusual people, war reportage, world events & processes
Shanika Sriyananda, courtesy of DailyFT, 7 September 2016, which carries the title “The Road to Nandikadal”... and also in http://sangam.org/road-nandikadalmaj-gen-kamal-gunaratne/. ..…Note that the highlighting is embellishment by The Editor, Thuppahi
Battle-hardened soldier Maj. Gen. Kamal Gunaratne, who has shed his Army uniform which he wore for 35 years, yesterday urged political leaders of the country to maintain the hard-earned peace. Maj. Gen. Gunaratne, who is credited for commanding his troops of the 53 Division to fight the 45-minute final battle of the Eelam IV war, which killed LTTE Leader Velupillai Prabhakaran and put the curtains down on the 30-year-long war against LTTE terrorism, will be launching his memoir ‘Road to Nandikadal’ today (6) at his alma mater, Ananda College. In an exclusive interview with the Daily FT, he explained the historical failures that led the LTTE to become a stronger fighting force, the motive of writing of his memoir, the downfall of the LTTE, transforming the SLA to a victorious Army, allegations on human rights abuses and the last days of the final battle. “I wrote this book for the poor parents who sent their sons to fight with the ruthless LTTE, the elite people in Colombo and abroad and the human rights activists, who were misled by a wrong picture about the our soldiers and the war,” he said, adding that he doesn’t want his memories to be buried with him after his retirement. Maj. Gen. Gunaratne said that for the LTTE to make a comeback with the same vigour it needed a leader like Prabhakaran, who was an equally committed, dedicated, disciplined and ruthless terrorist leader.
Filed under accountability, Eelam, historical interpretation, landscape wondrous, law of armed conflict, legal issues, life stories, LTTE, military expenditure, military strategy, performance, politIcal discourse, prabhakaran, Rajapaksa regime, Rajiv Gandhi, reconciliation, Sinhala-Tamil Relations, slanted reportage, sri lankan society, suicide bombing, terrorism, the imaginary and the real, world events & processes
The US-based Marshall Legacy Institute (MLI), engaged in provision of technical support for clearance of landmines world-wide, has selected the Sri Lanka Army’s Mine Detection Dog (MDD), Alvin and its handler, Lance Corporal G.N.W.M Nawarathne of 7 Field Engineer Regiment, Sri Lanka Engineers (SLE) as the MLI’s ‘Team of the Year – 2016’ to receive the MDD Award of the Year – 2016 during the ‘Clearing the Path’ Gala celebration on 26 October 2016 in Washington, DC. The two-member Army de-mining team, Alvin and its handler, Lance Corporal Nawarathne has been working together to-date since 28 December 2011, having de-mined approximately a land area of 73,340 sqm in the North and East. Their operations have so far recovered 20 Rocket Propeller Grenades (RPGs), 48 grenades, 137 Anti Personnel Mines (APMs), 24 unexploded ordnance, 18 detonators and 243 ammunition and other explosive remnants of the war. Continue reading
Filed under accountability, landscape wondrous, life stories, LTTE, military expenditure, performance, rehabilitation, security, sri lankan society, the imaginary and the real, unusual people, welfare & philanthophy, working class conditions, world events & processes