In an open attack against former secretary to the ministry of defence Gotabaya Rajapaksa, Field Marshall and Parliamentarian Sarath Fonseka declared that when Rajapaksa did not have the capability to protect a bike from thieves, how can he command a 200,000 strong military force to win a war.
Delivering his inaugural speech in Parliament on mid week, Fonseka went on to claim that at the time Rajapaksa left the army the LTTE was only using ‘galkatas’. “So on what basis did he have the experience to strategize the war to win against the LTTE?” he questioned.
“Gotabaya ran away from the army, he begged Ranjan Wijeratne to relieve him from his military duties, and then went to the United States. I met him there, he was doing tinkering work and told me life was very tough. He didn’t even have a vehicle, and so one of my friends lent him a bicycle,” Fonseka said.
“But one day Gotabaya came and told my friend that the bicycle was stolen, so my friend asked why he didn’t chain it, then Gotabaya said he had chained it to a ladder, but the robbers had taken the ladder and bicycle with them. This is the sort of people who say they were the ones who won the war,” Fonseka, the Former Army Commander claimed.
Fonseka, who is also a also a cabinet minister in the current government, said that even though Gotabaya Rajapaksa had written a book on how he won the war, Fonseka claimed that a person who left the army way back in the 90s, and had absolutely no experience in the field where modern warfare was used, had no capability to strategize the win against the terrorist group. The book was documented by journalist C.A. Chandraprema.
“We were in the war front every day for 35 years, we served at various levels, and we were even shot at, that is how we gained experience, and we didn’t run away from fighting in the war like Gotabaya did,” Fonseka charged.
The Field Marshal also claimed that a person who didn’t possess the sufficient ground experience did not have the ability to strategize and win a war and give leadership to a 200,000 military force.
“First he did tinkering work in the US, then he was a computer operator for 14 years also in the US, and then suddenly he came to Sri Lanka and taught the military how to fight the war and win it. Then I too should be able to go and order engineers around and teach them how to do their job. But, you can’t do that, because you need experience and without experience you cannot carry out any task successfully,” Fonseka added. ( By Munza Mushtaq © Colombo Telegraph )