Fonseka’s Myopia
Posted on December 19th, 2009

 Sanjaya Somasiri – Courtesy

Management Expert Alec McKenzie once wrote “errant assumptions lie at the root of most failures”. Presidential candidate, S. Fonseka has made a wrong assumption when he decided to join hands with the forces that were acting against Sri Lanka. His recent statement to a Sunday newspaper, in which he accused Sri Lankan soldiers of killing surrendered LTTE cadres, is the first omen of his failure in politics.

Retired General S. Fonseka gained popularity for his involvement in the successful humanitarian operation that brought the end to the three decades of bloodshed. Perhaps he did not perceive the fact that his popularity was nothing but a result of an effective propaganda mechanism carried out by the Defence Ministry. Image building of the key personnel involved in the operation was one of the main strategies adopted by the Ministry of Defence in its attempt to rally public support for the war effort.

Unfortunately, for General Fonseka, the popularity was too much for his little mind to deal with. Apparently, he might have thought his popularity as a war hero would be enough for him to win a presidential election. Now, it is too late for him to realise that he has become a pawn of a sinister campaign that sought to destroy our nation.

All discerning citizens in this country know in their hearts and minds that the allegation about killing surrendered LTTE cadres is a canard. There is nothing new about it. It perfectly fits with the hateful propaganda carried out by the anti Sri Lankan forces throughout Sri Lanka ‘s struggle against terrorism. The newspaper that gave publicity to this canard is also known to the public for its complicity with the anti Sri Lanka campaign. It has delivered hundreds of similar “explosive” canards before. Yet, all of them “exploded at hand” no sooner than delivered.

What General Fonseka has added to this lie is his finger pointing at Defence Secretary Gotabaya Rajapaksa and General Shavendra Silva. His jealousy over General Silva’s popularity and the personal grudge he has with Secretary Defence has only added new flavour to the same old lie.

On the other hand, the blame game is something that General Fonseka has been always very good at. During the war, when troops faced heavy casualties, he used to blame the navy for letting LTTE bring heavy weapons to the country. Later, it was revealed by KP, that the LTTE could not bring a single arms shipment to the country during last three years. Also during the final phase of the war, he was trying to spread a story in media that the LTTE leader might have fled the country by sea when he became suspicious of troops’ ability to find the terror chief. However, when troops finally found Prabhakaran, he announced it grandiosely on TV but without a word of thanks the Navy. So much so for the integrity of a man who claim to have “singlehandedly” winning a war?

General Fonseka’s desperate attempt to eat his own words now has certainly no value. He has already stirred the hornets’ nest. All peace merchants, bogus human rights activists, and the likes that lost their business with the end of the war have been given a new opportunity to avenge Sri Lankan soldiers. The forces wanting to see Sri Lanka an unstable nation are charged with fresh energy to pursue their sinister aim. The patriotic forces that fought day and night with the anti Sri Lankan campaign have to redo what they have done during the last three years of the humanitarian operation. All because of a myopic and power hungry individual who is apparently ready to betray anything to achieve selfish objectives.

As for General Fonseka, he would certainly have to repent for his myopic behaviour in the near future. He seems to be overly obsessed with his skewed logic that he can run up to the presidency of the country with the support of his new political friends; the same set of people who worked against him.

For the rest of the people who are forced to suffer from Fonseka’s myopia, it is high time to come to an agreement with the reality.

* Can a former army chief who could not even cooperate with his fellow navy commander be expected to bridge the gap between two different ideologies such as of the UNP and JVP?

* Can a person who could not be satisfied even with powers of the Defence Secretary be expected to shed the immense powers of the Executive Presidency if he could ever grab that power?

* Can a person who was not ready to share the credit of the victory with the others who made great contributions be expected to share the political power with the rest?

* Can a person who chose to team up with the corrupt at the outset of his political career be expected to eliminate corruption in the country later?

* If by any chance, he was involved with attacking and murdering journalists who wrote against him, can he be expected to establish democracy in the country?

* Above all, can a man who is ready to betray the very same people who once helped him so dearly for own advantage, be expected establish good governance in the country?

The answers to the above questions are something that all citizens of this country must find carefully. In reality, the forces that supported General Fonseka’s defection; do not wish him to win the election. What they want is to avenge the country that ran against the wind and achieved peace and stability, when they wanted her to be fighting a war forever. It is not the question of S. Fonseka winning an election, but the damage he can do to the country during his election campaign. This is what he has already begun.

US President John.F. Kennedy once said “For the great enemy of truth is very often not the lie-deliberate, contrived and dishonest – but the myth – persistent, persuasive and unrealistic. Mythology distracts us everywhere.” It is the time for all Sri Lankan citizens to come to terms with the reality. Lies, untruths and half truths are less dangerous as long as we are with the realty but not with the myth. The decision is with us whether to risk the country’s future; whether we become another Iraq or a Singapore.

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