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Sri Lanka: Defence Secretary Is A Grim Impediment – Analysis

By Dr Kumar David

Lanka’s Defence Secretary Gothabaya, a brother of President Mahinda Rajapake, together with two other brothers (economics minister Basil and parliamentary speaker Chamal) comprise the inner cabal and power hub in the country. The triumvirate of president, defence secretary and ex army commander Sarath Fonseka are credited with winning the war against the LTTE and enjoy warmth in Sinhalese hearts. But things are changing, public attitudes are shifting in respect of all three; President Rajapakse has lost much of his shine – or that’s my impression still to be tested at any significant local election in a Sinhalese area – and even political opponents of Fonseka now campaign for his release since his incarceration is a politically motivated miscarriage of justice. None of this is new; but in the case of Mr Gothabaya Rajapakse (GR), two recent events have been transformative; the Lankan regime’s UNHRC defeat in Geneva and the abduction and subsequent release of two leaders of the JVP radical breakaways, now organised in the new- the Frontline Socialist Party (FSP). In the light of these events GR has become a liability not only to the government but also to the SLFP, the principal party in the ruling alliance.

The Geneva setback

Sri Lanka

Sri Lanka

The US sponsored resolution, supported by a reluctant Delhi under the Tamil Nadu whip but after watering down, carried by 24 votes to 15 with 8 abstentions, was a bitter defeat for a regime that had put the prestige of the Rajapakses on the line and spent (SL)Rs200 million in public funds trying to stave off defeat. It was not strongly worded, called for implementation of the counsel of the LLRC commission (appointed by President Rajapakse) and a probe of “accountability”, code for alleged war crimes and human-rights violations by the military during the civil war. Nevertheless it struck close to the Rajapkse heart; leave aside accountability, even calls for demilitarisation and exclusion of the military from civilian and economic life are on collision course with the military and its principal officer, Defence Secretary GR.

GR is much feared by allies and opponents alike. It is public knowledge that senior SLFP Ministers resent the usurpation of power by the Rajapakses but dare not contest it. Leaders of the three left parties in the government freely express their revulsion of GR in private, but tremble at any display of public disaffection. In a word, GR is the man nobody dares criticise in public, in print or electronic media. I could get away with censure of even the president in my articles in Lanka, but criticism of GR would, until recently, attract a prompt editorial red pencil.

The Geneva debacle loosened tongues and brought internal rifts to the surface. The Daily Mirror newspaper reported that GR had called for “reorganisation” of the Foreign Ministry, code for turning Foreign Minister G.L. Peries into a guinea pig and packing him off; his acolytes in the Ministry and the diplomatic corps are under attack and likely to be dismissed. The left leaders referred to previously, while remaining subservient, are tiptoeing with gentle criticisms. Careful leaks are being engineered that a close advisor of the president and editor of a Sinhala weekly has blurted out “poor President, Gothabaya is the whole problem.”

These difficulties would have blown over; after all GR is the president’s brother and a member of the most trusted inner circle. However a more substantial difficulty is the conflict of interests in respect of the UNHRC resolution. The resolution goes beyond LLRC recommendations by instructing the government to take “additional steps” to ensure justice, equity and accountability, and to provide an action plan on how it intends to address “violations of international law”. Who is going to do this? If GR, security Tsar during the war, remains in office the conflict of interest is glaring! The government cannot meet the terms of the resolution unless it changes course, that is, overhauls functions and functionaries in the defence establishment. Prima face, the resolution cannot be executed by the government if the persons in charge of the defence ministry remain in office because they are too deeply embroiled in the status quo and presumably have too much to conceal.

Abduction of Premakumar Gunaratnam and Dimithu Attygalle

Compounding these difficulties for government and president is the Gunaratnam-Attygalle abduction. The consequence in any rational society should have been the prompt removal of the Defence Secretary but the sheer brazenness of Lankan politics continues to amaze. Though the UNHRC called the regime to order, and warned it to stop human-rights violations, abductors in white vans have thumbed their noses at the world and continue to ply their trade with impunity. There have been 56 abductions (several may already be dead) in the last six months, 29 of them in February and March; but the eye-opening outrage was this.

Mr Premakumar Gunaratnam and Ms Dimithu Attygalle, two leaders of the FSP, disappeared on 6 April 2012. Common sense shouted from the rooftops that the prime suspect was the state which was fretful about PSM collaboration with Tamil youth and its campaign to expose the regime’s human-rights crimes. It was feared that both had been murdered since, in Sri Lanka, abduction in a white-van is a trip to an “undiscovered country from whose bourne no traveller returns”. Activists Lalith Weeraraj and Kugan Muruganandan of the same party were abducted on 9 December 2011 in Jaffna and have not been seen or heard from since.

By an amazing stroke of luck both survived. Gunaratnam is an old-time JVP activist who fled to Australia in the 1990s and acquired citizenship. He returned under a false identity in late 2011 to participate in FSP activities. Gunaratnam’s mother and sister, on hearing of the abduction, rushed to the Australian High Commission and begged intervention with the Sri Lankan authorities; the High Commissioner obliged. This placed GoSL in an awkward bind; to snuff out Gunaratnam would have been to precipitate a diplomatic storm with Canberra, which Colombo can ill afford at this time. After a pack of ludicrous and contradictory statements, GR finally admitted that the SL authorities had Gunaratnam in their custody and deported him to Australia the next day.

Though Gunarratnam and Attygale were held in separate covert locations (blindfolded and with hands and legs in irons) they had been brought together, at least once, by the abductors to be grilled together and information crosschecked. Hence Gunaratnam knew at first hand that Attygale was held by the same abductors who had grabbed him. Therefore it was not possible to deport him and eliminate Attygalle since he would have spilt the beans upon arrival in Australia. Hence Ms Attygale too had to be released and both were dumped separately on April 9, in lonely locations with instructions not to turn back and look at the vans. Attygalle went straight to the FSP office and the party promptly called a press conference at which she blurted out her story.

Though blindfolded it was obvious to her that she was quizzed by the military and/or the police. The line of questioning aimed at eliciting information two matters; was the FSP in touch with LTTE remnants, was it preparing for armed struggle. She believes the interrogators were high officers since others addressed these senior persons as “Sir”. The air was official, heavy boots trod around the chamber. In any case, the cover has been blown sky high; the defence secretary, as spokesman for the government of Sri Lanka, had deported Gunaratnam; therefore a party to the abduction.

Hence all is revealed now! There is no need to speculate any longer about who is behind the long and tortured tale of white-van abductions and assassinations in this miserable land; the abductors have obligingly identified themselves. Nonetheless, it is very difficult for rational beings to comprehend how GR remains at the helm of the Defence Ministry. But then, this is Sri Lanka in the epoch of the Mahinda Rajapakse presidency.

Delhi’s bum role

Both the Geneva outcome, pushing GoSL into free fall and making extravagant promises (which nobody believes) of implementing LLRC recommendations, and the intervention of the Australian High Commissioner, thanks to which the lives of Gunaratnam and Attygale were spared, underline the importance of foreign intervention. Far from xenophobic hypocrisy, the truth is that the foreign factor is the most significant in pushing back the state’s human-rights crimes.

Unfortunately it is also true that Delhi (I do not say India as the connotation is different) has been a disappointment if measured against what could have been, given influence and proximity. I don’t need to elaborate; the calamitous failure of the Manhohan Singh Administration Sri Lanka policy has been widely discussed. The tragedy however, to judge from Dr Singh’s grovelling letter to Mr Rajapakse immediately after the Geneva vote, all but apologising for voting against the Lankan regime, indicates that a change of attitude in Delhi is unlikely, unless Indian public opinion piles on the pressure.

About the Author

SAAG is the South Asia Analysis Group, a non-profit, non-commercial think tank. The objective of SAAG is to advance strategic analysis and contribute to the expansion of knowledge of Indian and International security and promote public understanding.

40 Comments on "Sri Lanka: Defence Secretary Is A Grim Impediment – Analysis"

  1. a huge thank you to the Australian Govt for rescuing these two people. If the High Comm staff in SL and Aust Govt staff in Australia hadn’t worked so hard to rescue these two people, they would be dead by now.

    Let’s not forget the thousands that have ‘disappeared’ and most of them dead or suffering in secret prisons in Sri Lanka

  2. I respectfully disagree. Under Gothabhaya’s watch nobody died from terrorism. Gunaratnam was tamil tiger and wanted to start the war. He shouldnt have been released.

    Way to go Gota!

    I dont think this comment wpudl be published

  3. Ranjit Vitharane | April 15, 2012 at 12:58 am | Reply

    An excellent expose of the true political situation in Sri Lanka. This is nothing but a
    crude familial dictatorhip run by people with little formal education or understanding of what human rights or International Law means.The main culprit in the White van crimes and murders is Gotabaya Rajapaksa. This fellow an American citizen should be arrested and brought before a U.S.Court or The International court of justice. The President himself has become a cult figure unshamredly displaying his large image in every Town Village and public place. His Cabinet is composed of knowmn Thugs, Drug dealers and crminals among former turncoats from the U.N.P. That gives him a majority to govern. These guys are bribed and given ministerial posts etc to keep them on side. Sri Lanka is soon going to be a basket case unless International opnion and action by Human rights bodies internvene and bring Justice to all the people including the persecuted minority Tamils.

    • Lakshmansingh | April 16, 2012 at 3:12 am | Reply

      You are NOT I repeat NOT Ranjith Vitharana to write all this nonsense. Your letter smells of being a traitor and a supporter of the TERRORIST LTTE rump in the west,and being in their payroll. Understand that north and east Sri Lanka are NOT exclusive tamil terrorist enclaves. The LTTE terrorists with their suicide bombers killed thousands of innocent civilians for over 40 years. White vans only abduct terrorists. People in Sri Lanka prayed for peace and they do not want front line terrorists to sabotage the hard earned peace obtained after making the ultimate sacrifice by the soldiers and civilians.

      • Ranjit Vitharane | April 16, 2012 at 5:59 am | Reply

        Laksmanshingh . You sound like a Sikh from is it Khalistan? or some Indian Ghetto. Just keep off commenting on subjects that do not concern You.As to my heritage Iamm a Sinhala Buddhist from the South and proud of my heritage. I amm not an LTTE plant. You sound like a Slipper soup sucker of the Rjapaksa Mafia which includes Drug , Dealers Criminal murderers Rapists and Kidnappers. I have every right to comment on what is right or wrong with the country of my birth.

        • Lakshmansingh | April 16, 2012 at 10:21 am | Reply

          I believe you belong to the JVP terrorist mob from the south, same as where your President comes from, but he has put the JVP where they belong to, the wilderness. Understand that there is a thing called free speech, and I have every right to comment on people like you, 100% traitors who are shameless, ungrateful low lives for what GR and MR did to save the country from the tamil terrorist curse, which no other leader of your country did. You can blame them till the cows come home, but when your Sri Lanka is turned into the “wonder of Asia” you surely will not have the last laugh but eat your own words. The previous leaders of your country wanted the terrorist war to continue to eternity for their own selfish greed. I do not personally know or have ever seen Mahinda Rajapaksa, but I surely know what Premadasa and Jayawardena did to the IPKF.
          Now I salute an astute leader MR who with true grit demolished the tamil terrorists. Even the reformed tamil terrorists do not write abusive jargon like you about the triumphant leaders in the calibre of your president Mahinda Rajspakse and Gotabaya Rajapakse. What they did specially to the killers of Rajiv Gandhi, is a lesson for all terrorists. Before you put pen on paper think intelligently if you have any brain to think.

  4. SAAG is South Asia’s American Geeks.

  5. shamindra ferdinando | April 15, 2012 at 1:32 am | Reply

    Those critical of GoSL ignore criticism directed at Western powers and India over accountability issues. Please read recent UNHRC & UN statements on HR situation in India and ACLU (American Civil Liberties Union)missives on what is going on in the US since 9/11.

  6. Now let me present a few points that Kumar David had missed:

    1) Together with ‘Pakiya’ and et al, Kumar David is a known to be a sympathiser of LTTE ideology.

    2) If not for GR, Fonseka would never be the commander of the Sri Lanka army in the first place let alone a war hero.

    3) Just a two years back majority people in Sri Lanka and by far had rejected Fonseka’s claim to be the sole war hero.

    4) If Kumar is not blind he should see that GR is doing a wonderful job of beautifying Colombo, Jayawardene Pura and many other cities as the chief of UDA. Is he not doing a wonderful job as Lanka Hospital (Apolo) chief.

    5) They cannot get elected and therefore had to be appointed, that is to say the least of public approval of opinion of two senior ministers of the old left parties.

    6) With all its might together with lies by the paid journalistic stooges of the west like ch4, of all Asian countries, only India backed the UNHRC resolution sponsored by the US.

    7) “poor President, Gothabaya is the whole problem.” That phony sympathy for President must be a recipient of NGO funds.

    8) The fact that Gunaratnam had so many aliases and stayed out of lime light and operated like under cover CIA agent is enough to suspect him as a shady character and therefore a dangerous man. To say the least, if he tried such tricks in the US, Gunaratnam would now be water boarding, having forced sex etc in Guantanamo Bay prison under the dreaded Patriotic Act of the US.

    Just like the days of Eelam war 1V, Kumar David and et al may try and try but will not succeed in setting the President on a ‘collision course with the military and its principal officer, Defence Secretary GR’.

    • Sunil Abeyratne | April 15, 2012 at 7:29 am | Reply

      Dr David has raised valid issues. Respond to the issues Leela. GR actions in running hospitals or his efforts to make Colombo a leading city are not under discussion. What Dr David has raises is the single most important matter facing Sri Lankans. Simply the freedom to criticize the actions of a government that is increasingly becoming a de facto dictatorship.

    • Leela, your comments are always factual, laudable and commendable.
      Thanks! Chris

    • Lakshmansingh | April 16, 2012 at 4:24 am | Reply

      Thank you so much Leela, you surely know what is going on by the defeated LTTE terrorist rump in the west, who pay naive western journalists, TV channels, western politicians with their “blood money” to believe lies upon lies. Please keep up the good work.

  7. A bad piece of an analysis, in any form of journalistic norm. The article claims opinions such as alleged abductions as absolute truths and then form conclusions from them. The analysis also uses personal “mud slinging” on individuals to justify criminal activities of people linked to terrorism.

    The hard earned peace dividants are now being felt in Sri Lanka. It is slow but steadily happening. Compare the pace to Serbia, Iraq, and Afganistan, etc, and you can clearly see a winner.

    People like Gunaratnam, who has a proven connection to armed struggles in the past, are the real menace here, and should be treated as what they represent. If this happened in US, he would be in Guantanemo, I would imagine. Let’s face it – the LTTE is survived in overseas and is planning to bring the terror back to Sri Lankans – tamils mainly. Let’s make sure it does not happen.

    I think the so called righteous nations should understand this and work with the SL government and make sure that the international environment is right to sustain this hard earned peace. The UNHRC resolution was a farce. I am sure US spent more than $200 million rupees to bring over 100 delegates to convince nations to support the resolution. Where did that money come from? US tax payers? Or some other organisation? Now those are good questions to ask. Remeber also that US was the only vote against he UNHRC resolution agains Israel.

  8. “undiscovered country from whose bourne no traveller returns”. – Is this a code??
    Abduction of these two persons was the first mistake, and trying to cover it up is the second. Too many ‘comical Alis in SL government. I would say, GR is defending the country. But the president is trying to cash in- We dont hear, GR is making his son an MP or the national Rugby team captain… I have so much respect for Gota….

  9. PROF. KOPAN MAHADEVA | April 15, 2012 at 2:58 am | Reply


  10. Hella Archie | April 15, 2012 at 4:15 am | Reply

    Keep living in dream land and keep adding to your list of LTTE sympathisers any who disagree with you and your Sinhala/Buddhist paradise where pretty soon you will have abortions supervised by the Hela Urumaya!

    • Hella Arachie,
      I have seen people like you condemn Sinhala Buddhists for not rising against Rajapakse government. I am not saying for a moment that this government is whiter than white. Pity, you don’t see but Sinhala Buddhists see that RanilW is not a credible alternative to Rajapakse. Problem is; like you, RanilW doesn’t understand that rulers must have the backing of the majority to carryon an effective rule.

      Besides, we have elections every now and then. And we can elect a party of choice then. Vast majority of Sinhalese dislike agitations because they know it only brings about pandemonium like in Arab countries. See, Anglo French, the US oligarchy had induced anti-government riots in Libya from 33,000 feet. Did they bring democracy to Libyans or oil to oil companies? And that’s what now over 95% literate Sinhalese ponder. Leela

  11. Real conspirator’s article targeting GR individually. It is by a long known tiger in civilian Marxist attire. These people want GR to be removed for their long-term agenda to be implemented.

  12. Here’s another article based on wishful thinking and with the effort to grease the LTTE propaganda machine. if there is an election in Sri Lanka today, Mahinda Rajapakshe will win, not just a victory, but a landslide victory. I am not so uch a fan of the man or this government, but like a MAJORITY in Sri Lanka, I am also happy that the brutal terrorists that the LLTE were, are no longer able to butcher them to satisfy their bloody thirst. The rising COL is a SMALL price to pay for being able to send our kids to school, knowing that they will be back home to us in the afternoon. The architects of terror are no more. Whether you like t or not, Mahinda Rajapakphe is a national hero.

  13. Nimal Rajiva | April 15, 2012 at 4:37 am | Reply

    Sri Lanka Government “white van” disappearances of Political activists made Democracy disappear in Sri Lanka.

  14. This is nothing but a Tamil Diaspora / USA hatched article that verves nothing of any substance

  15. Not only does Gothabaya have the unwavering support of the president, he also has the respect and gratitide of a majority of the majority (Sinhalese) ethnic group. Gothabaya’s alleged role in the elimination of the Tiger rebels’ leadership has quite literally become the stuff of legend among the Rajapaksa family’s ethnic group. Contrary to the predictions of this article, the Rajapaksa-led coalition won an even higher majority in local council elections in 2011 than they did in national elections in 2010. I do not think it is realistic to expect that enough Sinhalese ethnic voters are willing to hold the Rajapaksas to account on issues like corruption, for a change of government to occur in the forseeable future. It’s not worth considering until generational change (both in the leadership and the voting public) has taken place.

  16. Destabiliza the country first by creating havoc thru stupid sinhalese and then get eelam is the plan.

    nah…I dont think it will work.

  17. Gunaratnam should not only have been charged under the prevention of Terrorism act, but also for violating immigration laws by entering Sri Lanka on a forged passport. Parties like his have always tried to grab power by violent means. Look at Nimal Weerawansa now, he has realized that it’s better to lick Mahinda’s feet than waste time in parties like the JVP or be in cahoots with Tiger elements like Gunaratnam.

  18. Frederick Mahakotipitiya | April 15, 2012 at 11:30 am | Reply

    Mahinda Rajapaksa was picked as President by Velupillai Pirabaharan in the 2005 election. VP preferred Mahinda over ranil because Mahinda is a strong sinhala leader. VP’s expectations in picking MR are

    1. bring to an end the violence against the tamils (VP was the protector of the tamils; the LTT was born to protect the tamils from Sinhala violence)

    2. preside over the divison of the land to ensure tamils live safely in theor ‘homelands’ (the UNHRC resolution is the first step in this process; if things continue as they are, a Sudan style referndum under UN supervion will be achieved in approximately 3 yrs time)

    VP has picked the right person to achieve the aspirations of the tamils.

  19. Former President J. R. Jayewardene was quoted in the Daily Telegraph in 1983 as saying “Really, if I starve the Tamils, the Sinhala people will be happy.”

    It is not the commissions and inquiries. The intoxicated people are there to behead Gandhi statue

    Gotabaya’s interviews will tell you why Sri Lanka is on the news everyday, in every nook.

  20. What a crooked analysis at that. As usual the analysis tries to portray the Sri Lankan president and the defense secretary in a very bad light!. All these analysts and the media attacking the leadership of Sri Lanka and its armed forces never criticized the mass murders carried out by the LTTE and their financiers around the world. The thousands of innocent lives which were destroyed thanks to the Tamil Nationalist cause can never be rectified nor compensated. But adding insult to injury these are the very peoples bad fortune that is being wiped under the carpet by International CHAOS monger who’s lives depend on funds from pro LTTE organisations!

  21. GR is a tough, efficient man. SL needs more such people. The man was instrumental in defeating terrorism and he is now doing a lot of good things on the development front, with the same tenacity he has always displayed.
    Gunaratnam is a former terrorist, a killer and entered the country illegally. I am very disappointed that he was released. He should have been charged with crimes and put behind bars. But sometimes, compromises have to be made.
    Is the MR government clean? Absolutely not. It does all kinds of shady activity. Just like the US government or the Indian government. This is not a matter of right or wrong. These gutter journalists try to paint this as good Vs evil. This is about who has the most power. Can the former White-masters (with the help of their paid stooges) bully a small country. Or can the small country with the help of some big friends withstand the pressure. As always, I hope SL wins.

  22. Sanjaya Arachchige | April 15, 2012 at 1:05 pm | Reply

    Yes, GR is the whole problem but not for the ordinary Sri Lankans but for the people like this “Dr. Kumar” who used to profit out of our country’s problems . But for Sri Lankans though many have no knowledge of it GR has become the solution for many problems that country has been locked-in since independence.

    This is the man who managed the whole war affair to success on behalf of the president getting the best out of all heads of security forces—even allowing one of them to think that he can become the president out of the popularity that he gained during the war effort.

    Without GR today we would never be able to witness the Colombo city that we have, without him the men who fought the war would have been a burden to the society, the country would have gone to the criminals ..

    In fact GR is the edge for this government . Like war, there are few other grave problems that hinder the our country’s development , which can not be solved without taking extraordinary measures – Colombo development , crimes,foreign sponsored agents working against the country are just few to mention . GR is the only leader who is capable of handling them and he will do that for sure if he is allowed .

    Unless for GR this government would have been another government like of Chandirka, Premadasa , JR , etc . that has done nothing special but survived their periods. It was what GR managed that would remain for the country and will be remembered after this government .

    This comment is not for the people against him, because they know this by fact and it is exactly why they hate him so much. This is for the people who does not know him but appreciate his good work.

    About his intolerance about meaningless criticism- it may be true but because he is not a politician . If somebody call this a weakness , there is a great and rare strength for his defence , which is of course what made me to leave this comment after reading this.

    That he always stand by his team and never compromise his policies. This is what make him special out of all those mediocre “experts” who hate him for doing what they can not event imagine of doing today.

  23. Ranjith Fernando | April 15, 2012 at 2:15 pm | Reply

    To protect the state and its order Governments needs prompt action, when a one takes prompt pre-emptive actions it is normal to see this kind of allegations because the inner motives of the innocent looking pests may not be visible to media or general public.
    Kumar Guanaratnman alias Mudalige is an Australian citizen and not yet verified if he is has dual citizenship.
    We should not allow foreign sponsored pests of this kind funnel the funds to Sri Lanka to destabilize the country and create chaos. Kumar Gunaratnam is nothing but ex-LTTE terrorists.

  24. Gota is great. He is not these things for the fun of it, but to protect the country. The fact that these guys have been framed before they could get their hands on what they were planning; ie to re-ignite terrorism through the militant JVP shows how Gota is keeping the defence appratus well-focused. Thanks Gota. You saved our country and you will continue to protect us. These guys who are offering fake analysis know that the gretest impediment for their Eelam project is Gota and MR. So they want to get rid of them through gutter journalism and some stupid sinhalese, just as Prabhakaran tried at the at the beginning of the war 4. Sorry guys, that will not work.

  25. Ananda Seneviratne | April 15, 2012 at 7:08 pm | Reply

    I totally agree with LEELA. President MR is the best ever President we ever had in Sri Lanka who successfully eliminated world’s most brutal and inhumane terrosit LTTE from our country!.
    Gota and Basil Rs are helping him to develop th ecountry inlcuding North and East. JVP is now working with bankrupt Western LTTEs to destabiize the country.


  26. Mothilal de Silva | April 15, 2012 at 9:06 pm | Reply

    Dr Kumar David, the author of this article was one of my favorite teachers, when I was an undergraduate in the Faculty of Engineering, Peradeniya. We were listening attentively not only to his lectures in Engineering, but also to his preaching on Trotsky’s work. We did not follow his political ideology as we could not grasp it’s abstract nature. He also had a habit of holding on to his Marxist, Troskyte ideology tightly. Therefore we considered him as a purified Marxist. Undoubtedly, we recognized him as one of the Sri Lanka’s top academic and an Engineering Scholar and a Theoretical Marxist. I was not bothered to look at his ethnicity as I hated to segment Sri Lankans on ethnic lines. Recently a close friend of mine sent me an article written by Dr David and I was shocked and surprised to notice the racist tone of his writings and his shift from Marxism to Tamil Extremism.

    The actors of the abduction drama, Mr Gunarathnam and Ms Atigala were both connected to an extremist Sinhalese, anti-Indian Marxist organization. On two occasions they took up arms against Governments, elected by people. In the 1st armed struggle they got the support of North Korea led by Kim Il Sung. On the 2nd occasion they took up arms against the Indian intervention and the devolution of Power to the Tamils in the North and East. They joined hands with LTTE and formed an unholy alliance to chase Indian Peace Keeping Force (whose mission was to support the Sri Lankan Government to implement the devolution package architected by India) out of Sri Lanka. They were suspected of killing all the Progressive Sinhalese politicians who supported the devolution of power to the Tamils. One such causality was the charismatic Liberal politician Vijay Kumaratunga (husband of former President of Sri Lanka Ms Chandrika Bandaranayke Kumaratunga)

    I consider Gotabaya Rajapaksa as a leading war strategist and a great administrator. Undoubtedly he was instrumental in defeating LTTE terrorism and it is difficult to believe that he intentionally involved in harming a single Tamil or any Sri Lankan civilian. I admire him as a person who helps in reconstructing war ravage Sri Lanka and his current mission is to reconstruct not only war affected North and East but also the whole Island. He had done a yeoman service to the nation with much dedication and in excellence. Beautifying the Colombo and satellite cities within a short period of time is a good testimony to his ability. All Sri Lankans enjoy the dividend of peace and country need leaders of the caliber of GR to bring back normalcy to the country. The rhetoric of Dr Kumar David is good for the consumption of foreign forces who want to create trouble in a peaceful country and destabilize the region. Majority of Sri Lankans will not subscribe to the ideas of Dr Kumar David.

  27. What a poorly written and biased article that attracts so many replies that will give the author much more needed attention so that the newspaper editors like him. That is the irony of it that if you don’t write replies against such bad and biased articles, the readers will think the false story is true. But if you write more replies then it gives attention to the puppet writer who writes with bias looking at a pay cheque.

    This author is grand speculating while saying he is not (eg: “…Hence all is revealed now! There is no need to speculate any longer about who is behind the long and tortured tale of white-van abductions …..”). It is like a thief saying that there is no need for stealing. There is absolutely no hard proof of who has done the abductions, let alone there is no evidence to suggest whether there was abduction at all. All what we have is what is said by 2 people who is pretending to be abductees. They tell the whole story and we simply listen. Great stuff for a fiction.
    To me, the whole thing is stage managed and probably the Australian embassy in Sri lanka also has a hand in this. Otherwise how come Australian embassy was looking for a missing “Gunarathnam” when only a “Mudalige” from Australia was missing (or said to be missing)? How did the Australians know about a “Gunarathnam” when there was no Gunarathnam existed in Australian records? That means Australia knew about this guys aliases. Secondly, when Gunarathnem said his Australian passport was lost and the Aus ambassador issued a temporary travel document (probably to just pretending), how come Australian ambassador handed over Gunarathnam’s original Australian passport to him at the air port in the last minute? Doesn’t his whole thing smell a rat? Gunarathnam’s mother was on record saying that she didn’t meet gunarathnam for years and his wife in Australia was on record saying she didn’t see the guy since 2006! But both of them raised the alarm together when the Gunarathnam “was missing (or was he?)”. That is nice, saying I didn’t see him for years but I can tell that they were abducted right now. I think this story is great for a comedy. Basically Gunarathnam was stage set to “create” yet another “white van abduction” to support recent UNHCR comedy. To the average reader, this whole saga was not difficult to be stage managed and enacted to be seen exactly as it played out. Well, nothing much to stage manage, is it? Simply hideaway (doing whatever) for two days with an unmarried girl and come out and say this is what happened. So easy! And we have fools all around to believe them. Hmm, 2 days.. how did they eat and went to toilet during those days totally blind folded and chained and cuffed? They should have a lot of “shit” hanging all around their back sides since they could not clean their backs after going to toilet without seeing anything. Oh ! yeah ! Their cuffs, chains and blind-folds were taken off just millimetres from the toilet door and then put back on immediately by an invisible man after they finished whatever they did in the toilet. Nice fiction.
    It is very easy to link anything to the government because it is so easy, cheap and popular. If a lie repeated enough times then that lie can look like the truth, even without any evidence. That is the technique used by western governments (eg: weapons of mass destructions) and journalists (eg: channel 4’s killing fields) today.
    I challenge this Author to come out with the slimmest piece of “hard” evidence acceptable to a court (of international standards) rather than just assumptions and gossips and speculations, to prove any of the accusations he has come up with, regarding any of those abductions. What proof do you have to say that there was an abduction (other than what a couple of anti-government activists; one of them with many names and many passports and also prison escapee says) at all? I am not here to believe words of a guy who has escaped from jail, an explosives expert, a former tamil tiger terrorist supporter who attacked an army camp, who lives under many names, and one who has many passports in many countries.
    Mr. Author you can be foolish enough to trust such a guy and expose your level of gullibility, but not me.

  28. Nirmal Fernando | April 16, 2012 at 4:14 am | Reply

    A treacherously written biased article which is aimed to obtain more NGO money but nothing else. Defence Secretary Mr Gotabaya Rajapaksha and the clan will be ever praised and held high in our Sri Lankan society and their names will be added to the annals of our golden history for rescuing us from Tamil Terrorism and standing against the colonial powers once again thus bringing us back our true dignity as a Nation. The people like Kumar David was considered to be garbage many decades ago by our society but sadly they are still paid by the miserable NGO community to conspire against us but they won’t succeed as long as people like Defence Secretary Mr Gotabaya Rajapaksha is going to hold the office and may he be there for as many years as to come.

  29. Ranjith Fernando | April 16, 2012 at 4:31 am | Reply

    Democracy is nothing but a system most people select a system to rule themselves. In a democracy may be there will be some unsatisfied elements,But it is Government’s responsibility to integrate them to mainstream. In Sri Lanka’s case some elements still connected to ex-LTTE are continuosly rejecting government’s honest invitations to participate in a dialogue to bring these unsatisfied elements into mainstream.
    Don’t Blame gota, MR or SF for what’s going on, International community should well accept the ground reality of Sri Lanka and force Hardcore ex-LTTE elements to participate in peace building effort. Instead trying to weaken the strong government will only destablize the whole system and it may bring misery to Majority+Minority, I doub’t some countries and South Indian politicians may want this.

  30. Lakshmansingh | April 16, 2012 at 7:04 am | Reply

    It is indeed ironic that Kumar David chose the Sinhala and Tamil New Year to write utter nonsense and concoct enmity between true, honest peace loving Sri Lankans, whatever their race may be. By the way Kumar, are you related to the late S.J.V. Chelvanayagam and his son in law A. J. Wilson who advocated the racist Vadukkodai resolution. That was the stepping stone to the megalomaniac Velupillai Prabakaran’s LTTE terrorist outfit which made Sri Lanka a hell on planet earth. The demonic tamil tiger terrorists were defeated in 2009. Those ruthless terrorists who escaped to the west with the assistance of people smugglers, paying thousands of dollars claiming for asylum as “bogus” refugees to the gullible
    western nations,are now trying desperately to involve the UN, US, UK, Canada, EU, tamil nadu and Australia, to disrupt the hard won peace. Why? To implement the old colonial policy of ‘divide and rule.’ Why? for the permanent interests of the above named countries. Why? Sale of arms, weapons of mass destruction, Strategic location of Trincomalee for the use of those countries trade etc. India will approve the amalgamation of the north and east to tamil nadu and call for another UN resolution, but never allowing tamil nadu to be a separate state, but allow half of tamil nadu to occupy the north and east,to relieve their burden of population explosion. People of the calibre of Premakumar Gunaratnam or his aliases and Dimithi Attygalle are propagating the quest for a cloud cukkcoo land called eelam and there will always be traitors who will do anything if the price is right. The Sinhalese and the Muslims do not have any ethnic lands that they claim. The Tamils live everywhere in Sri Lanka. Guess what? the Tamil population of Colombo is 56% during the last census. The best solution for those tamils who cannot live together with others, is to move to their homeland tamil nadu. There simply cannot be a mono-ethnic tamil land exclusively for them in the north and the east. Sri Lanka history has shown without a shadow of doubt, it is impossible to divide this sovereign nation as long as the sun, moon and the stars shine and exist.

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