“Sunday Leader” Editor nails Fonseka as “a weak, vacillating, indecisive, inexperienced , ‘liar’ ”
Posted on January 3rd, 2010

H. L. D. Mahindapala

Don’t believe a word of what the state media says about Sarath Fonseka, the Common Candidate of the Opposition. They are biased. Believe only what the Sunday Leader says about Sarath Fonseka. It can never be wrong about Fonseka because it is the only paper that has openly declared its commitment to back Fonseka.

The last statement by the Editor of The Sunday Leader, Fredrica Jansz on Fonseka is a case in point. It was, indeed, stunning, She told her readers last Sunday (January 3, 2010) that Fonseka, the preferred candidate of The Sunday Leader in the presidential election, is an   “indecisive, inexperienced, weak, unpatriotic”¦.. waffling, vacillating” General “incapable of telling the truth”. In other words she is calling the candidate supported by her paper as a liar who has “destroyed his credibility”.

No one can disagree with these confirmed unstable characteristics of Fonseka as it comes from The Sunday Leader,Lanka-e-News (December 27, 2009). Quoting Fonseka, the JVP website said: “Gen. Fonseka making a special statement to the Lanka-E-News, said when he complained to the Sunday Leader following the erroneous report published on the 13th by it , the Sunday Leader Editor Fredrica Janz came to meet the General in a most distraught state and cried, claiming that Gotabaya was trying to arrest her. The General therefore relented, and as a gentleman he avoided taking a vicious stand against the Sunday Leader, and gave permission to make a correction duly in the newspaper clearing the confusion sparked by the false report.” which cannot be accused of bias against him. She was, in the main, reacting to accusations made against her by Gen. Fonseka in the JVP’s

Lanka-e-News added: “Opposition common Presidential candidate Gen. Sarath Fonseka said, because the Sunday Leader Editor came and cried before me I did not want to take action at once against the Sunday Leader news report. Yet I am preparing to file legal action against the false propaganda in the news report aimed at misleading the country.”

The JVP version has to be taken seriously because it is the most active party backing Fonseka. The Sunday Leader is also the only paper that has declared publicly its commitment to back Fonseka. So two backers of Fonseka are at each others throats and the public has to decide who is telling the truth.

The evidence of Fredrica is more compelling than that of the JVP and Fonseka. In contradicting the Lank-e-News she has exposed Fonseka and the JVP as the Jathika Vihulu-karayan-gay (Jokers) Pakshya (Party). More importantly, she nails Fonseka as a liar. And she says so in so many words without saying so directly. On three counts she has proved Fonseka to be a brazen liar:1) She states that she did not cry and that she is not given to crying easily. 2) Fonseka has not filed legal action and the UNP has assured the Sunday Leader that he has no intention of doing so. And thirdly, that the Sunday Leader will not carry a retraction but as “a compromise” agreed to run his clarification, which she says has made matters worse for Fonseka.

“Her story..” on page 1 of last Sunday Leader (January 3rd) explains in detail of how she came to write about the accusations made by Gen. Fonseka against the Defence Secretary Gotabaya Rajapakse.(See The Sunday Leader, December 27th 209). The latest story (January 3rd ) in which she defends herself against accusations made by Fonseka and the JVP turned out to be as big as the initial story published on December 27th in which she reported accurately Fonseka’s accusations against Gotabaya.

Unfortunately, for Fredrica and Fonseka the story did not go in the direction they wanted. Both wanted to use it as an anti-Rajapaksa missile but it boomeranged on them. Besides, in writing her version of how the sensational story of Gen. Fonseka betraying his own men came to be written, she has unwittingly revealed the hidden agenda and hand of the Sunday Leader. The whole episode as narrated by her comes out as a joint plot of The Sunday Leader and Fonseka to attack the Rajapaksa brothers. The only redeeming feature in the story is that when the story ricocheted she refused to back down and give in to the henchmen of Fonseka “”…” namely, Mangala Samaraweera, Anura Kumara Dissanayake and Vijitha Herath “”…” who were pressuring her to retract the story.

However, as stated earlier, her latest story reveals that she and Fonseka were plotting to gain political mileage in the run up to the election by attacking Gotabaya without realizing that it would boomerang and hit them harder than the Rajapaksas, Both Fonseka and Fredrica saw it as a story that would explode in the political arena as an anti-Rajapaksa bomb. This is why Fredrica ran the story believing it to be a stick of anti-Rajapakse dynamite. However, she miscalculated her moves. After the decision of the Board of The Sunday Leader to back Fonseka it was foolish of Fredrica to run a story that would undermine their anti-Rajapakse campaign. She jumped on the story because she too, like Fonseka, thought that it was a good weapon to hammer Gotabaya, their bete noir. Both Jansz and Fonseka hate Gotabaya.  Reading between the lines it can be gleaned that both thought it was the kind of story that would knock the Rajapaksas out, first by alienating the Tamil voters and, second, by alienating the international community of the West who are out to get the Rajapakse administration. What they failed to realize was that the story was a double-edged weapon that cut deep into the heart of the Fonseka’s campaign than that of the Rajapaksas.

The moment the story hit the streets the public reaction predictably went wild. The government media and the Rajapaksas did not have to put a spin or orchestrate it, as stated by Fredrica. The public knew that they were betrayed by the man whom they thought was their hero who would never let them down. The nation reacted instinctively with revulsion against the general who was making false accusations against his own army. It was a downright betrayal of the fundamental principles that makes a man an upright man. Fonseka not only shot himself in the foot but also plummeted overnight from the exalted status of a hero to a traitor.  And, if Fredrica knew her onions “”…” she ought to since she is bent on backing Fonseka all the way to January 26th, — she should have not run that story and told Fonseka to keep his loose mouth shut.  It is counter-productive for the politics of the The Sunday Leader to back Fonseka, on the on e hand, and then run stories that would damage his image and blast his credibility, on the other.

But the damage was done and then Fonseka went into reverse gear with his henchmen running to Fredrica to do some repair work. It was too late. Not even elephants can drag back what you have said, says a Sinhala maxim. Blinded by hate against the Rajapaksas who gave him the all the big breaks in his military career to rise to the status of a general he fell on his sword. The Rajapaksas will survive this attack and go on to new heights, no doubt. It is the Army that served the nation and the people who made enormous sacrifices that are going be the victims of Fonseka’s foul mouth.

Fredrica accuses the government of “orchestrating” the campaign against Fonseka. But the government didn’t have to do any orchestration at all. Fonseka was doing it for the government. First he made the accusation that the Tigers who came with white flags to surrender were killed on the illegal order of Gotabaya. Then he made his case worse by denying that such a thing happened and he was ready to take full responsibility for whatever happened under his command. Then he reneged on that statement again saying that he won’t take responsibility for what others had done. Then at Ratnapura he repeated the same accusations. He had within a space of a week taken four positions none of which is credible.

To quote Fredrica: “Fonseka’s garbled and gradual retraction destroyed his credibility”¦ No one believed his half-hearted denials and his credibility suffered considerable damage.” This is her way of saying that Fonseka is an unreliable liar. However, neither Fonseka nor Fredrica expected the story to backfire the way it did. Their aim was to target the Rajapaksas and give a boost to to Fonseka’s image as “a true war hero”. She in fact says so. She said: “”The original article was written in part to demonstrate that Fonseka as a true war hero was not scared to confront the government’s bogeymen head-on. She adds revealing the motive behind Fonseka’s attack on Gotabaya. She added:: the truth.” Here she calls him a liar again. “When Sarath Fonseka made this allegation I reacted as any journalist would. A presidential candidate and decorated war hero was accusing the incumbent President’s brother of ordering the death of unarmed surrendering LTTE leaders and their families.” See! Fonseka’s accusations were aimed at targeting “the incumbent President’s brother” and Fredrica’s aim was to demonstrate that Fonseka was “a true war hero” by targeting the Rajapaksas. But their plans went awry. “By backing down,” she wrote, “he proved himself to be incapable of tackling the Rajapaksas with the most powerful weapon at his disposal

When the story she wrote to boost Fonseka backfired neither of them knew how to wipe the egg off their faces. In fact, when Fonseka faced the press when he came to extricate from his right royal mess he was nervous and hesitant. The government was having a field day. In fact, she admits that Fonseka fell into the trap of the government. Before the story backfired on her and Fonseka she was hoping that the public would focus on the accusation of the killings which Fonseka himself denied later. So Fredrica too was up the creek without a paddle. When the henchmen of Fonseka, Mangala Samaraweera and Anura Dissanayake went running to Fredrica, hoping to do some damage control, there was nothing she could do to save her favourite candidate except to “compromise” by running the “clarification” issued by Fonseka.

In the meantime, Fonseka was twisting and turning every which way, contradicting each statement he made, to get out of his predicament. Here’s a classic example of his immaturity and inability to handle a crisis. He said in his clarification: “I can speak conclusively and authoritatively on this particular issue and say categorically that nobody carrying white flags attempted surrender in those final days of the war. Therefore all of the LTTE leaders were killed as forces completely took over a remaining 100m x 100m area of land north of Vellamullivaikkal.” He added: “Two days after the war ended I learnt through some journalists who were entrenched at the time with the then Brigadier Shavendra Silva that an illegal order had been conveyed to General Shavendra Silva by Defence Secretary Gotabhaya Rajapaksa. This illegal order was however not carried out at ground level. I take full responsibility for what happened on the ground.”

The “clarification” instead of exonerating him makes him an incorrigible liar. If, as he says, nobody came forward carrying white flags in the final days of the war and if “the LTTE leaders were killed as forces completely took over the remaining 100 x 100 m” what crime could have been committed by Gotabaya, whether he gave the orders or not. Fonseka’s statement states that the “illegal order was however not carried out at ground level”¦” Clearly, according to him, nothing happened to make anything that happened in the last days a war crime. So if no war crime was committed, if no one came with white flags and if the Tiger leaders were killed in the course of the war, what is the point he is making on pure hearsay? And what is the big deal about him taking responsibility for things that did not happen? Besides, which Fonseka are we to believe? Are we to believe the Fonseka who made the original accusation? Or are we to believe the Fonseka who denied it? Or again are we to believe the Fonseka who repeated it again in Ratnapura and also stood by his accusations, as stated by Fredrica? Does Fonseka know his own mind? When he talks does he know what he is saying?

Fredrica states that the interview she had with Fonseka “was intended to both give the reading public a better idea of the General as a person and allow him to put forward his views regarding his campaign and major policy issues.” It must be said that she had a done a marvelous job of it by exposing her pet presidential podian as an “inexperienced, indecisive, waffling, vacillating” and self-destructing liar. Coming from The Sunday Leader who can contest it?

The contradictory statements, the extravagant promises he makes to all and sundry, the denials of his own statements, reveal the lack of honesty, integrity and character in Fonseka. His character weakness is not only a danger to Fonseka but also to the nation. So should the nation trust an “inexperienced, indecisive, vacillating, waffling, weak, unpatriotic” and untried political bungler who will not hesitate to betray his best friends, his comrades-in-arms and the nation at the drop of one of his frequent lies or escalating promises?  Or should the nation stick with the Rajapaksas and give them another term to complete the unfinished war against the enemies of the nation who have changed their shape from Tigers to Elephants and Swans?

2 Responses to ““Sunday Leader” Editor nails Fonseka as “a weak, vacillating, indecisive, inexperienced , ‘liar’ ””

  1. Sri Rohana Says:

    Dear Mahinda
    With all these statements Mr. S.F wanted is to get a good name from Tamil Terrorist supporters in abroad.

    Now he is a retired person with American Green Card. (It is a high secret on which criteria he is entitled to get that without living in USA?) If he goes to USA he has three options.

    1.With his military experience and age of 61+ he may get a security guard job in America till the age 65 maximum.
    2. Or Tamil terrorist propagandist may use him as a mouthpiece like Brian Seneviratne of Australia for their Eelam agenda.
    3. If not anti Sri Lankan western agenda may use him as a witness against Sri Lanka’s war heroes.

    Definitely after 27th January 2010 he has to leave Sri Lanka and live with his Son-in-Law and with his other family members. To live there and enjoy his life with the money his son-in –law earned after supply ammos to Sri Lanka army he need a life guarantee from Tamil Terrorists. USA and Canada are well known Tamil Terrorist bases even their North American Tamil terrorist leader Rudra Kumaran based in USA.

    Now Mr. S.F wanted to become a friend of Tamil Terrorist. Even now Europe and America’s Tamil bogus refugee Diaspora decided to support SF. So that he worshiped Nallaur kovil and gave lot of promises to Tamils. Including 13+ amendment almost a federal statues which is a stepping-stone to separate Eelam. If Tamil Terrorists accept him as a friend they will not kill him in USA! Then he is peaceful. That is his personal agenda of this election.

    To have a happy life for his latter stage in USA this man trying to mess whole Sri Lanka.

  2. cassandra Says:

    What we have here is two people – Sarath Fonseka and Fredrica Jansz – trying to wiggle out of a predicament of their own ham fisted making, the latter with some subtlety and the former in more clumsy fashion. Neither of them is convincing but clearly the damage is more serious to “Fonny Come Lately” and his Presidential aspirations

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