Witch-hunt for war heroes
Posted on March 3rd, 2019

Udaya P Gammanpila Courtesy Ceylon Today

The UNP Government is now in deep trouble. Tamil separatists played a crucial role in bringing the government to power in 2015.  After securing victory at both presidential and parliamentary elections, the UNP wanted to reciprocate the support received from the separatists, who urged the UNP to co-sponsor the resolution to be brought by the USA against Sri Lanka at the UNHRC session in Geneva in September 2015.

Mangala Samaraweera was the then Minister of Foreign Affairs.  He was the bridge between the UNP and the separatists.  He may have promised to co-sponsor such a resolution while having a Cuban cigar with Suren Surendran of Tamil Global Forum in London when the UNP was in the Opposition.  That is why he was compelled to co-sponsor the anti-Sri Lanka resolution despite the protests of Cabinet colleagues and senior diplomats of the Foreign Ministry.

Co-sponsorship- a no, no!

Co-sponsorship means the admission of allegations levelled against Sri Lanka and support for the actions proposed in the resolution.  Hence, no nation in the world comes forward to co-sponsor a resolution against their own country.  Sri Lanka made history as the first nation in the world which co-sponsors such a resolution.  If a nation opposes a resolution against it, it will not be under pressure to implement it in the event of adopting it. Sri Lanka not only supported it but also cosponsored it.  Hence, Sri Lanka is now heavily under pressure to implement the recommendations in the resolution.

After co-sponsorship, Sri Lanka is now bound to implement the recommendations mentioned therein.  The Government has already implemented several recommendations such as establishment of Office of Missing Persons, establishment of Office of Reparation and ratification of International Convention for the Protection of All Persons from Enforced Disappearance.  However, the Government failed to repeal Prevention of Terrorism Act, establishment of Reconciliation Commission and inquiring war crime allegations with foreign investigators, prosecutors and judges.

The Government has shown a very little progress in the most crucial recommendation, namely, introduction of a federal Constitution.

The USA, EU and Tamil separatist forces are now in an angry mood caused by intolerably slow speed of the implementation of the recommendations. They review the progress of the implementation biannually at the sessions of the UNHRC, specially at the first session of the year held in March.

Most of our leaders are descendants of loyal servants of European colonial masters.  Hence, they do not possess a personality strong enough to resist the pressure mounted by their former colonial masters.  On the other hand, they cannot implement the recommendations as they fail to justify their undertakings before the public. Hence, they attend every single session of the UNHRC with great fear.    In essence, the Government top brass is now in a dilemma.

Mercilessly attacked UNHRC

The United Nations have passed 228 resolutions against Israel.  The UNHRC alone has adopted 33 resolutions against Israel.  Israel has not implemented any of the recommendations mentioned in these resolutions.  Instead, Israel has opposed these resolutions justifying its stand.  Because of its opposition, it is not under pressure to implement the resolutions. The USA, the solitary global superpower recently mercilessly attacked the UNHRC.  The USA withdrew from the UNHRC in June 2018 calling it a politically biased cesspool.

The anti-Sri Lanka resolution was proposed by the USA. The very same nation now alleges that the UNHRC is a politically biased institute.  Why should Sri Lanka implement recommendations made by a politically biased council?

In this backdrop, Sri Lanka can urge the council to consider the US sponsored resolution is now null and void.  Alternatively, Sri Lanka has a golden opportunity to withdraw its co-sponsorship quoting the US withdrawal as the excuse.

The Government is fully aware of the angry mood of its European masters.

Hence, they take a gift to appease these masters whenever Sri Lankan Government attends a session of the UNHRC. After pleasing the masters, the government begs for further time to implement the recommendations.  When the Government attended the session in March 2017, several Army intelligence officers were in remand custody accusing them of disappearing Pradeep Ekneligoda to appease the masters.  Similarly, when they attended the session in March 2018, several Navy intelligence officers were in remand custody for the allegation of disappearing 11 youths in Trincomalee.

The UNHRC is in session now.  The Government has so far failed to enact the new federal constitution.  Probing the so-called war crimes with foreign judges has turned to a never-realising dream.  The European Governments are now furious since Sri Lanka has wasted four years with broken promises.  Hence, the Government needs a huge gift to appease the masters.  That is why they have suddenly decided to arrest Number One War Hero of the nation, Admiral Wasantha Karannagoda.

Number one war hero

He commanded the Navy during the last war against the LTTE.  He led the Navy to destroy three ships used by the LTTE as floating armouries which was a turning point of the war.  Since the Navy blocked arms smuggling attempts of the LTTE, it failed to face the firepower of our Army.  At the face of defeat, the LTTE leaders opted for reaching Nandikadal lagoon instead of disappearing in thick Vanni jungle, with the intention of escaping to a foreign country.  However, the  Navy was able to avert this attempt.

After Field Marshal Fonseka, then army commander, found guilty for betraying the military forces in White Flag Case, Admiral Karannagoda became the number one war hero. The Government should be mindful of disastrous consequences of arresting such a distinguished war hero.

One Response to “Witch-hunt for war heroes”

  1. Christie Says:

    India will purse them for ever with nonviolence or violence.

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