20 September, 2019

Blog

The Fog Of War In Sri Lanka

By Michael Roberts and Padraig Colman

Dr. Michael Roberts

Dr. Michael Roberts

Although Western media have been critical of both sides in the conflict between the Sinhala-dominated government of Sri Lanka and the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE), they tend to see Tamils (and thus the LTTE) as underdogs.

Sri Lankan Tamils have been emigrating since the fifties. There is a substantial body of intelligent and prosperous Tamils abroad alienated from Sri Lankan politics and governments. The patriotism of expatriate Tamils increased when the government defeated the LTTE in 2009. They are receptive to the propaganda of Tiger activists.

Tamil nationalists or sympathizers now hold key positions in the west. Sri Lankan government PR is ineffective in comparison with the coordinated campaign of the Tamil diaspora using such outlets as the BBC, ABC, Sky, Channel Four, New York Times, Der Spiegel and their like.

The result has been distortion.

  • Western media erroneously describe it as “a war without witnesses” even though a restricted number of foreign reporters were transported to the rear battle front on several occasions.(1)
  • The received wisdom is that at the end of war there was “merciless shelling” and “extermination” and that subsequently some 300,000 civilians were “interned” in “concentration camps”. Both claims are exaggerations, the latter being quite gross.
  • Ban Ki-Moon’s Panel of Experts (Darusman Report) said that “a number of credible sources have estimated that there “could have been as many as 40,000 civilian deaths”. Despite the questionable methodology pursued by this panel, (2) its guesswork became a definite figure of at least 40,000 civilian dead; and, in the indelible words of a British parliamentarian named Lee Scott, 40,000 “slaughtered”.

British parliamentarians did not allow for the following factors during the last five months of the war in the patch of LTTE territory we term the “Vanni Pocket”:

  • It was difficult to distinguish between civilians and combatants;
  • The LTTE often fired on Tamil civilians;
  • US Ambassador Butenis confirmed the government’s claim that they made a conscious decision to prolong the war and risk more SL Army casualties in order to protect civilians. Red Cross representative Jacques de Maio, Robert O Blake of the US State Department and Jim Grant of UNICEF echoed this in their secret memoranda during the height of the war;
  • The Sri Lankan authorities knew that USA and India were tracking the battles on satellite and would spot any inordinate use of force;
  • Satellite imagery indicates that most of the craters in the Last Redoubt were from mortars not artillery;
  • While a wide range of estimates of civilian dead have been presented in the past few  years the most grounded of these are from Narendran Rajasingham (3) and IDAG-S[iv] and yield a range of dead from 10,000-18,700. The number of survivors – 295,873 civilians and LTTE – is astounding considering the circumstances.

For the Tiger high command, the mass of their people served as a:

  • pool of labour for defensive works (bunds, ditches) and logistical support;
  • source of new conscripts: and a
  • human shield

The LTTE strategy was to utilize the citizens of Thamilīlam, a body of some 320,000 or so people, to stay within their territory – eventually only the Vanni Pocket – as a bargaining tool for international intervention. The “impending humanitarian disaster” that was proclaimed by Human Rights Watch, a host of other civil rights organizations, sympathetic journalists and politicians was a creation of the LTTE. The secular fundamentalism and simplistic black and white thinking of INGOs made them useful idiots for the LTTE, as were several Western ambassadors.

The thinking of British politicians, including Prime Minister David Cameron, is one-sided and directed by sound bites that totally discount the temporal-spatial and strategic backdrop shaping the last phase of the war.

After Cameron’s return from CHOGM, Ed Miliband tried in the Commons to outdo him in condemnation of Sri Lanka. Labour backbencher, Siobhan McDonagh, consistently tries to please Tamil voters in her Mitcham and Morden constituency. Despite having voted in favour of the Iraq invasion and against an inquiry against it, she calls for an inquiry into alleged Sri Lankan war crimes.

WikiLeaks revealed that in May 2009 David Miliband said that he was spending 60% of his time on Sri Lanka because there were many Tamils living in marginal constituencies. Miliband and his aides wrote about “ratcheting up” the case for humanitarian relief efforts.

In a statement to the Senate subcommittee on the Middle East (West Asia) and South Asia Robert O Blake said: “Positioned directly on the shipping routes that carry petroleum products and other trade from the Gulf to East Asia, Sri Lanka remains of strategic interest to the US.”

The editor of the English Catholic magazine The Tablet wrote on December 7th 2013: “Why has the Prime Minister been so obsequious to the Chinese…? He made it plain for all to see that China’s indifference to most of the values that define a civilised society was of little or no interest to him, provided the British economy benefited from an increase in trade and investment. This was in strong contrast to his performance in Sri Lanka last month, when he made much of that Government’s treatment of Tamil civilians at the end of the civil war…The reason appears to be that Sri Lanka is not one of Britain’s major trading partners, whereas China is. This takes political pragmatism too far.”

Simon Jenkins was one of the few western journalists who recognised that a ceasefire was a one-sided benefit to a warring force on its last legs. He noted that “in Sri Lanka a rudimentary study of the past three months of fighting would have told Miliband that a ceasefire would be pro-Tamil, not just “pro-humanitarian” (2009). The Fourth Estate in the West had been thoroughly alienated by the intimidation, abduction and killing of several local journalists in Sri Lanka in the years 2006-09, actions which could be credibly assigned to the government’s intelligence services or its paramilitary Tamil allies.

Jeremy Page of The Times told the world that 1,400 people were dying every week at the Menik Farm camp. There was no evidence because it was simply untrue. Within the space of his short article Page quickly moved on to deal with the Eastern Province where there were no camps and the war had ended two years previously. The government had asked the Red Cross to scale down its operations in the east because the situation was under control. Page elided this with the canard about deaths at Menik Farm to give the impression that the government was callously booting out the Red Cross while people were dying.

The Channel 4 News documentary, Sri Lanka’s Killing Fields, contained a great number of factoids (a term coined by Norman Mailer and defined by the OED as “an item of unreliable information that is repeated so often that it becomes accepted as fact”).  This effect is similar to a term coined by Stephen Colbert, namely, Veritasiness or truthiness”, common sense, received wisdom, truths that are self-evident in the gut regardless of reality. Thus, Stephen Sacker was full of truthiness in his Hard Talk haranguing of Rajiva Wijesinha. Everybody knows the SL Army was shelling hospitals so why are you denying it?

Many journalists rely on Gordon Weiss’s book The Cage, even though Weiss makes the disclaimer that he was not a witnessGuardian Asia correspondent Jason Burke, writing in the Literary Review, describes this book as a “comprehensive, fair and well-written work”. Weiss was and is a major player in the numbers game. When he was working for the UN in Colombo, he said the number of civilian casualties was 7,000. This became the official figure quoted by the UN General Secretary’s New York spokesperson,  Michelle Monas, who told Inner City Press reporter Matthew Lee, “We have no way of knowing the exact count”. When Weiss left the UN, returned to Australia and began writing his book, he increased the figure to 15,000. Then he upped it to 40,000, a figure that a whole range of media outlets, including BBC and NDTV, ran with.

BBC journalist Waseem Zakir coined the neologism “churnalism” to describe the type of sensationalist reportage that is now in vogue. Nick Davies, in his book, Flat Earth News, presented an overwhelming weight of evidence that the British press lies, distorts facts and breaks the law. Davies’s research proved that in The Times, in 70 per cent of “news” stories, a claimed fact passed into print without any corroboration at all. It is interesting to note that Britain only has 47,800 PR people to 45,000 journalists.

The LTTE propaganda machine took global advantage of this state of affairs as well the liberal currents of thinking that tagged the Tamils of Sri Lanka as a minority that had been put upon. The Sri Lankan government’s own propaganda effort has been inept in spite of taxpayers’ money draining away to PR firm Bell-Pottinger for no return on the investment. Even critics of Sri Lanka like Patricia Butenis and Robert O Blake have acknowledged that the LTTE fired on their own people as they tried to flee; while Tamil civilian testimonies indicate that on the odd occasion in early 2009 the LTTE officers even directed artillery fire on their people as an aspect of the grand strategy of demonstrating an impending humanitarian disaster. It is a pity that this message has not been disseminated. For whatever reason, the Western governments chose to be blind then. The Western media was mostly deaf, dumb and blind then and remains comprehensively mute now.

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  • 1
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    This comment was removed by a moderator because it didn’t abide by our Comment policy.For more detail see our Comment policy https://www.colombotelegraph.com/index.php/comments-policy-2/

  • 21
    6

    The only fog is in the minds of two clueless, senile men whose credibility is utterly nonexistent due to their sycophantic support for the Rajapaksa regime and their acceptance of deliberate GoSL lies in the past, such as the number of 70,000 civilians in the Vanni.

    The GoSL’s credibility was shot when the IIGEP, formed at the request of Rajapaksa himself, was not allowed to function, and obvious massacres such as the Trinco-5 and ACF-17 have still not been investigated. Then there was the shifting GoSL estimates of the casualties, from zero, to 1200 to 7000. Given that the GoSL had so much to hide, that the casualty estimate range from 20 to 70,000 is not surprising. When someone is known to have a serious credibility issue as the GoSL is, any number is valid, until proven otherwise in an independent international investigation. So these two old men fail to ask the obvious question: why does the GoSL fear an investigation?
    Without that, the GoSL’s defenders can keep writing volumes, but most people will rightly consign it to the trash bin, and the issue will not go away.

    The claim that the war was without witnesses is valid; that a few reporters chosen for their partiality to the GoSL, who would report GoSL claims without a proper investigation or talking to the other side, were taken behind front lines by the GoSL, does not detract from that clam. Not only the UN, but even the ICRC had been asked to leave when the final battles took place.

    • 14
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      If it’s bloody “guesswork”, why don’t you two government stooges press you paymasters to hold an independent inquiry to find out the exact numbers that were killed???
      You two are real bumbling jokers…the Thomson and Thompson of SL government stooges.

      • 9
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        So these two say that “everyone” else is a LTTE stooge and has been “bought” over?

        So even Desmond Tutu? Jimmy Carter ? the late Mandela? Mary Robinson?
        The above are Nobel prize winners in the “elders group’

        So in their argument, they are the only ones who are “good” enough to estimate numbers???

        If the government they are working for has nothing to hide, why resist a proper investigation?

      • 1
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        Percy Jilmart:
        I seldom have reason to disagree with you, but this is one of chose occasions.
        Thomson and Thompson should not be denigrated by comparing them to these two characters. Heckle and Jeckle might have been better. What makes it worse is that each of them would be bad enough – I mean Colman and Roberts – and now they are hunting in pairs ………..!
        This must be a competition to show that while the target is maximum Pandam-holding, they CAN work together when the cause of sycophancy is one that they share.

    • 1
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      damn well said

    • 0
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      Unfortunately 70,000 Tamils did NOT die in last stages of the war.

      IF large number of Tamils died, there will not be TNA voters!

      Doesn’t that point us towards the solution?

    • 0
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      2000, 20000 or 150,000 deaths of Tamils orchestrated by diaspora Tamil racists is now irrelevant. The Tamil racists started the conflict with the aim of killing as many Sinhalese as possible. They lost the conflict in a humiliating manner, and complain and want the International Community to punish Sri Lanka. The morons think they are entitled to kill, and the Sinhalese should allow it? The racist diaspora Tamils have to take the blame for the deaths as they claimed to be the sole reps of Tamils. My concerns are for the innocent Sinhalese who died in vain, and to take steps to bring racist Tamil men and women who started and supported the Tamil killing machine, the LTTE, to book and punish them. There is peace in the Homeland now. Those numbers floated by LTTE, Darusman are a joke, best forgotten.

    • 0
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      If you don’t agree with what they say,it is not enough to call them “government stooges”. Instead you should dissect what they say, and show the error in their analysis. If not, you don’t sound convincing either.
      It is easy to find out how many were killed in the last few months of the Eelam war. Go to Tamilnet, and add up the numbers killed that they give for each day from Jan 1st 2009 to May 19th 2009, and assume that the Tamilnet exaggerated State terror by a factor of two, and so divide the total by two.

      Then the numbers are even less than the figures given by Roberts et al.
      Now, I don’t think Tamilnet is run by Sri Lankan Government pay masters.

      • 3
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        Arguments like this come from people who have a fundamental misunderstanding of how Tamilnet operated.

        It is an error to not differentiate between people who operated/edited Tamilnet from the west, with a couple of correspondents on the ground, and the LTTE’ media division. The latter sent out regular reports to several media organizations, including Tamilnet, in the early stages, but as the war intensified and everyone was running for their lives, there was no way for Tamilnet’s editors in the West to know the actual toll.

        Tamilnet was pro-LTTE but they were not the same as the LTTE. One or two Tamilnet correspondents on the ground, who were running for their own lives, got pieces of information, but never the complete picture. As a result, Tamilnet’s editors were in the dark about what was happening on the ground.

        Therefore, Tamilnet’s reporting cannot be the basis for any estimate of the war dead.

  • 0
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    Correction.
    Second para should have “estimates,” not estimate.
    Final para: “claim,” not clam.

  • 9
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    Paddy Colman should be cautious about the partner he has chosen.
    Michael Roberts, since losing his teaching opportunities in Australia
    has tried hard, albeit unsuccessfully so far, to gain the eye of the
    higher rungs of the current ruling clique. He can hardly be considered
    as neutral in reporting on the Sinhala State-Tamil armed conflict. He has been an outright anti-Tamil commentator who, to hide his clear prejudice, got on to the good side of Cricketer Murali at the height of the latter’s career. This retired teacher, who has a tendency to make a short thing long, has consistently tried to blacken the legitimate struggle of the Tamil people (that Tigers made many mistakes is conceded)

    It is learnt the many overtures he made to reach LTTE and diaspora sources in Australia and the UK on several occasions have all failed
    since he is considered washed out.

    His comment “Result has been distortion” is a sample of his partiality
    in a world that has taken good note of what has happened in the war-torn Island during 2009. While UN/HRC and other credible global bodies recognise the figure of civilian dead in May 2009 in the 40,000 range
    Roberts quotes here inconsistent and discredited sources to fall in line with regime figures which GoSL variously claimed from 0 – below 20,000. In the forthcoming meetings in Geneve the actual figures will be revealed and accepted.

    This study is as unreliable and worthless as all of Robert’s in recent times. The fact Roberts is hardly invited to address any significant
    academic discussion on the Sri Lankan crisis in India, the UK or North America alone is sufficient evidence of his isolation.

    Kettikaran

  • 0
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    This comment was removed by a moderator because it didn’t abide by our Comment policy.For more detail see our Comment policy https://www.colombotelegraph.com/index.php/comments-policy-2/

    • 0
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      Good comments, from David B

    • 0
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      There are many Vecancies at Dahja Jarapassa Governance.
      Hula also out,
      May be they will kick the kudu P M also.
      You all, So called academics, Merchandisers, Mercenaries and Ex soldiers are needed to help Jarapassa clan, and to by out foreign Politikkas.
      Daavid Blakr, Michael Roberts and Padraig Colman can join them.

      By the Way,
      Wishing You all, Merry Christmas and Happy new year with Non disturbing Patronage of RAJAPASSAS.

    • 1
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      @Siva Sankaran Sarma aka Blacker

      Looks like you have used some naughty words and CT has removed your comment. :)

  • 1
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    M Roberts is prejudice on Sri Lankan internal political issues and ethanits problems of Tamils and Sinhalese people.By his version more favour in Tamils of few terroist agenda.

  • 2
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    There is a simple long term solution. Send all Tamils back to Tamil Nadu. Then we all can live and let live.

    Not otherwise.

    Dutch and British invaders left Tamils in SL after bringing them from TN and Kerala.

    • 7
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      Then Where do you suppose to Run????.
      Jump Overboard and Commit suicide.
      We, Sinhalese, do not want pointless Morons Like You, with us in Sri Lanka

    • 0
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      FF,

      We are slowly getting to that point where there is no other rational option.

  • 1
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    The war in Sri Lanka the blame game is on the wrong party/group,if we see it all the media are writing is not correct as far as I am concerned so that is the reason I am writing this .
    The main culprit is INDIA,followed by U.K.let me take a lesson on this the central govt is always negative to the Tamilian race as they know that they are a superior one compared to the north Indians.The only smart north Indians come from pockets ,to name a few from West Bengal,Gujarat.The only state that did not want Hindi to be impose on them was the state of Madras so the central govt using underhand tactics collaborated with the Sinhalese to defeat the Tamils .wHAT THEY FAIL TO UNDERSTAND WAS THERE are 2 types of Tamils in Sri Lanka,the Jaffna Tamils & the Tamils brought into the island from Tamil Nadu to work in the Tea Plantation,the Jaffna Tamils have long ago migrated to GREEN PASTURES leaving pockets of Jaffna Tamils behind & the majority of Tamilian from Tamil Nadu behind.
    India should be taught a lesson all the Sri Lankan irrespective of Singalese,Muslims,Jaffna Tamils should now unite and turn Sri Lanka as a 2nd SINGAPORE of the worls as they have got solid backing from CHINA as the Chinese have spent billions of dollars upgrading Hamballata as a all weather port.

  • 7
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    Another PR man for the brutal regime of Sinhala Buddhist Extremism at work!

    • 1
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      Thiru,

      Not as effective as the brutal, Tamil terrorists and their financiers, mentors and sympathisers who were able to buy the gullible Western influencers lock stock and barrel.

      • 2
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        Hela

        “Not as effective as the brutal, Tamil terrorists and their financiers, mentors and sympathisers “

        Of course that is one reason as to why the former head of International finance and lethal arms buyer KP, ruthless killer Karuna, Pillaiyan…… and other members of LTTE have become near and dear to the clan and the Sinhala/Buddhist armed forces.

        They like each other as they both enjoyed brutally good wars.

        • 0
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          NV,

          Your IC is demanding reconciliation isn’t it (with one caveat though, head of MR on a platter and RW at the helm)?

          • 1
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            Hela

            Put those LTTE men, JVP terrorists and state war criminals on trial. Then the people can discuss about reconciliation.

  • 3
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    MacDonah has been a long term supporter of Tamil terrorism, but as pointed out was gung-ho about the invasion of Iraq on bogus evidence. As pointed out in adifferent article Weiss, Harrison nor Darusman were WITNESSES, and yet one of the well-known witnesses MURALIDHAR REDDY, a journalist of repute at THE HINDU is ignored, because it does not rhyme with the Western needs.
    The two authors should be commended for the cogent arguments, rare in these columns.

  • 4
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    “Although Western media have been critical of both sides in the conflict between the Sinhala-dominated government of Sri Lanka and the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE), they tend to see Tamils (and thus the LTTE) as underdogs.”

    When I read the first paragraph and the association of Mr. Padraig Colman is enough to put me off reading the rest of the article. According to them the west see the Tamils as “underdogs”. Do these parasites understand the words Fairness and Justice? The West does not need much persuasion or coercion in order for them take their stand. Times have changed and your tactics will not work anymore.

    If the result has been distorted, why not you two parasites ask for a credible investigation to prove your correct?

  • 2
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    Excellent write up which comprehensively trashes the linchpins of LTTE propaganda – as evidenced by the number of deleted comments posted by monkeys frothing at the mouth and raging :D

    • 9
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      They can trash the LTTE as much as they want but cannot claim with authority that no crimes committed by GOSL. They cannot invalidate the UN panel of Experts. Moreover, they cannot silence the growing chorus of organisations, nations and others calling for justice and accountability! Only way you and the authors can silence the allegations by credibly investigating and exposing the untruth as you claim. No amount analysis and quoting from various scholars cannot suffice!

      • 1
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        BI,

        You are wrong. The inhabitants of this island will silence the false propaganda of terrorists of your ilk and their supporters.

        • 1
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          The inhabitants of the island will get sick of the Rajapaksas and when they do our ilk will become their saviours . By the way, many Sinhala want accountability; do you think that they are also” propaganda of terrorists”? This is why the rajapaksas are trying to revive the LTTE so they can shift their responsibility. Time will be up soon!

          • 0
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            BI,

            If and when people get sick of Rajapaksas, they will be voted out. People have recognised who their saviours were, i.e. those who saved them from brutal terrorists. Your ilk have never been their saviours.

            Accountability per se may not be an issue for many people. The issue is selective accountability that is being demanded, while providing protection to terrorists, their financiers and mentors. Those Sinhalese who collaborate with such selective demands are propagandists of terrorists in deed whom need to be treated as who they are……terrorists.

            • 1
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              “Those Sinhalese who collaborate with such selective demands are propagandists of terrorists in deed whom need to be treated as who they are……terrorists.”

              May I remind you that one of the Recommendations of the MR appointed LLRC commission is Accountability. So, are you saying that the LLRC Commission members are terrorists? Then again, by default, MR too is a terrorist?

        • 1
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          Hela

          “The inhabitants of this island will silence the false propaganda of terrorists of your ilk and their supporters”

          Islanders has no say in all matters pertaining to law and order.

          Those who raise legitimate issues are being tarnished and visited by Gota’s Goons in white vans.

    • 4
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      LOL, so even the UN is under the thumbs of the Tamils? Wow they seem to be very powerful

      • 0
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        The Tamil lady Navi Pillai performs such a task on behalf of Tamils world wide.

    • 2
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      Like you froth and rave when Ms Navi Pillai comes to town? Guess it takes one to know one?

    • 2
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      @Siva Sankaran Sarma

      Blacker, your previous ‘frothing at the mouth’ comment was removed by CT. Sycophants like you would love it if people believed the the lies, damned lies and GOSL statistics…but unfortunately for Roberts, Pardraig and you, people on CT are not as gullible as most of the majority in the country.

  • 5
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    Who massage the figures? “Official alleges Growth Rate massaged” – http://www.dailymirror.lk/news/40662-official-alleges-growth-rate-massaged.html

    Can we trust the Rajapakse govt on figures released on other matters – such as the number of civilians killed by the armed forces?

  • 6
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    A typical thinking of a Sri Lankan. If you cant confront the truth then make it into a lie. This charractor has written a few articles here all of clearly exposes his affiliation with the Sinhalese propaganda machine. Dont know what is the going rate for such writings. He even wrote an article about one of the SL stooges from Tamil community portraying as a man serving the Tamil community. Probably he is a vet too.

  • 6
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    It is unimaginable how any one in their normal sense could commit such a “credibility-suicide”. What a couple!

  • 0
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    SL cannot understand facts or figures .All they know is hearsay ,and gossip . Excellent ,factual article to open the eyes of the non believers . It is indeed sad fact that SL believe what they want to believe .

  • 2
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    How Moon panel gathered information…..

    Twenty five sample letters were made available on line to Diaspora .

    The Diaspora was told that they could choose from one of the samples if they didn’t have the time to write on their own to the PoE.

    Sri Lankan Tamils were urged to pressure the UN, even if they hadn’t been directly affected by the conflict and atrocities committed by GoSL forces and its leaders.

    http://tinyurl.com/nbe9vk8

    Below are two of the sample letters addressed to Marzuki Darusman, (Chairman), Steven Ratner, Panel Member and Ms. Yasmin Sooka, Panel Member:

    Sample Letter (8)

    To: Mr. Marzuki Darusman, Chairman

    To: Mr. Steven Ratner, Panel Member

    To: Ms.Yasmin Sooka, Panel Member

    Tamil civilians in large numbers were victimized by their own government in most brutal manner with impunity in the three decades old bloody war. More than 40,000 were slaughtered in a small narrow strip of Mullaitivu and 50,000 more were maimed in matter of few days including many thousands of children. U.N. itself called the brutal situation then as ‘Blood Bath in the Beach’.

    The Sri Lankan government is adamant and arrogant in its behaviour towards justice seeking victims.

    In this backdrop, it is the moral duty of the U.N. to investigate Sri Lanka for ‘war crimes’, ‘crimes against humanity’ and ‘genocide’ of Tamil citizens of Sri Lanka

    Yours truly,

    Your Name, Contact Postal Address with the Residing country.

    Sample Letter (12)

    To: Mr. Marzuki Darusman, Chairman

    To: Mr. Steven Ratner, Panel Member

    To: Ms.Yasmin Sooka, Panel Member

    Re: U.N. must investigate Sri Lanka for war crimes and crimes against humanity

    In the tradition of being a world leader in human and ethnic rights, peacekeeping and development, long victimized, brutalized, tormented, helpless and hapless Tamils in Sri Lanka believe that U.N will continue to play a leadership role in bringing justice to them sooner than later.

    More than 40,000 were slaughtered in a small narrow strip of Mullaitivu and 50,000 more were maimed in matter of few days including many thousands of children in May 2009 alone what the U.N. described then as ‘Blood Bath in the Beach’.

    I humbly urge the panel of expert to pressure the U.N. to investigate Sri Lanka for ‘war crimes’, ‘crimes against humanity’ and ‘genocide’ of Tamil citizens of Sri Lanka

    Yours truly,

    Your Name, Contact Postal Address with the Residing country.

    And the rest, as they say, is history.

    • 1
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      “And the rest, as they say, is history. “….not yet

  • 7
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    Dr. ‘Michael Roberts and Padraig Colman, wake up and smell the coffee instead of smelling the faeces of the rajapaksha propaganda machine. If you believe the government is innocent why don’t you ask them to come forth and hold an independent inquiry without having to hide from it

  • 4
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    UNHCR March dead line is approaching we will have the likes of Michael Robert, The Hindu editors,Mudaliyar Reddy etc trying to create a fog of lies .

    The GOSL have hired a UK based PR company whose attempt to create a fog of lies have failed. GOSL tried so many foreign ministers, Palitha Kohan, Tamara Gunanayagam, Dayan,Rajiv, GOSL even bribed UK parliamentrians, bribed Satish Nambiar, Kalaesh Sharma…I can go on and on….

    One thing they have not done is to refute war crime allegations

    Now here they come again Dr Michael Roberts, Mudaliyar Reddy etc to act as the mouth piece of the Rajapakse regime.

    We Tamils have to fight on to show the truth to the world.

  • 3
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    How is this tar-brushing of INGOs for an example of a truthi factoid? – “The secular fundamentalism and simplistic black and white thinking of INGOs made them useful idiots for the LTTE, as were several Western ambassadors.”

    And this irrefutably neat division of the universe: “Tamil nationalists or sympathizers now hold key positions in the west. “

    And this painstakingly researched item of history writing: “The government had asked the Red Cross to scale down its operations in the east because the situation was under control. “

    This last is the best so far from the Rhodes scholar! what a picture of the government he has in his poor plodding head!

    And one supposes that those distorting Tamil sympathisers in key positions are suppressing and distorting the news about great government moves to scale down the military numbers in the north and east since May 2009 because the war is over there and the situation has been brought under control.

    When you see gems like these, rapidly advancing senility is the kindest explanation.

    But on the whole I agree – these two have produced an argument for a credible and impartial investigation to clear this innocent government’s good name.

    But then how is it possible in a world which has only Tamils or their sympathises?

  • 0
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    Heard the story of the mother who went to see an infantry parade on the street?She was heard to say,”Everone is out of step except my son.”

    • 0
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      OMG OMG, this is too funny ! Thank you, hopefully Colman is reading it

  • 0
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  • 4
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    It appears that this scum bag Dr. Michael Roberts, Dr. Paradaig Colman, Dr. Mahinda Rajapassa, Dr. Gotabaya Rajapassa, Dr. Mervyn Silva et al have the same IQ levels.

    • 0
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      Gamini,

      You and I usually travel in similar trajectories – provided you are the Gamini who writes so well, regularly and with knowledgeable forthrightness in these pages. Allow me please to insist Dr. Michael Roberts and Paddy Colman are learned men with decades of intellectual
      research and experience. We might disagree with them on specific issues but our respects and courtesies to them as academics must remain constant and beyond question.

      “While imagination initiates, it is the critical spirit that creates”
      – Oscar Wilde –

      • 2
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        Senguttuvan, nice to see you back.

        Paper qualifications don’t mean a thing. The author may have a PhD but as G L Pieris has clearly demonstrated that means nothing !
        The same thing applies, paper qualifications will not bring morality !

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    ///Western media erroneously describe it as “a war without witnesses” even though a restricted number of foreign reporters were transported to the rear battle front on several occasions.///

    Yes, there were allowed not in the last few months. They were allowed till 2008. Can you name the foreign journalists who were allowed in last few months of war, especially in 2009???

    Another thing is GOSL did not even allow private local medias, and UN workers from UNDP, UNHCR and many other UN divisions; They asked them to leave the LTTE control area. Do you really think GOSL just worried about the security of that UN workers??? No, They do not. All they wanted is No international people should be the witness of the casualties.

    Only the Red cross who took the risk with local red cross people to rescue the wounded and transferred them to Trinco and vavuniya via Sea for treatment because it is clear, that is what REDCROSS is formed for unlike other NGOs.

    Do not make us fool saying that foreign journalist allowed, so it is not war without witnesses.

  • 2
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    Michael,

    Thanks for exposing the truth and the facts behind the propaganda war carried out by LTTE sympathizers.

    • 1
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      Thank you Michael and Coleman for a well researched analysis of facts and exposing false propaganda of the Tamil diaspora machine. Tamil racists started and lost the conflict. Now they want the west to punish Sri Lanka, having suffered a Humiliating Defeat at the hands of Lankan forces. Congratulations to the forces and the President. Forget the nonsence of 70,000 deaths. Enjoy the peace!

  • 5
    3

    The Nazi’s used a book called “The Protocols of the Elders of Zion” to claim that the Jews planned to control the world. This was used by them kill the Jews.

    This writing is similar that instead of the Jews, these two “authors” claim the Tamils control the world.
    That includes:
    The UN
    UNHCR
    Navi Pillai
    Desmond Tutu, Carter, Mandela, Robinson …the elders group
    HRW
    Amnesty
    Asian Human Rights forum
    David Cameron and his Govt MP’s and opposition MP’s
    European Union.
    The US state dept.
    Hilary Clinton
    Obama
    The Indian Govt.
    Channel 4
    BBC
    CNN
    Al Jazeera

    The list goes on and on……

    • 3
      1

      This is good about the Nazis and the Jews and the Protocols.
      Perhaps one can collect the works of Roberts,Ratnawalli the various Silvas and one Dilrook Kannagara, M.Seneviratne, Amarasekkera and Gunasekere et al and publish them under the title of PROTOCOLS OF THE ELDERS OF THE LION!
      A good epigraph would be:

      “Unfortunately 70,000 Tamils did NOT die in last stages of the war.

      IF large number of Tamils died, there will not be TNA voters!

      Doesn’t that point us towards the solution?”

      Fathima Fukushima

  • 3
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    This poor man who could not reach the heights of Australian academia now seeks a lucrative paymaster by seeking to provide defences for the war crimes committed by the Rajapakse coterie. There was a pack of holocaust deniers in the past. Now, we have to count Michael Roberts among them. He ascribes everything to the Tamil diaspora as if the human rights groups and the governments in the UK, Canada and elsewhere do not have people capable of making their own independent judgments. Why does he not ask the government which pays him to establish and independent judicial body to inquire into the allegations of war crimes instead of accusing all and sundry of being deluded when the only persons who are deluded are the senile Roberts who deserted SL quite early and his poor side-kick.

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    The article of Roberts and Colman is based on facts and not fiction and is commendable. It has generated a heap of ad hominem blogs by parties who cannot provide credible counter arguments. They still depend for numbers of civilian killings on the bogus Moon Panel of which so called evidence is locked up for twenty years. This include even official reports of the UN.
    Tamilnet was the voice of the LTTE. They claimed that they report from the ground level and the battlefront.The total Tamil civilian deaths reported by the Tamilnet from 1st January 2009 to 19 May 2009 is less than 8000. Their figures do not distinguish between the casualties of LTTE cadres and genuine civilians.

    The most ‘authoritative’ figure of 10,000 deaths was given by Professor Francis Boyle who has been a long time and active supporter of the Eelam project. As the legal adviser to the LTTE Diaspora he would have been privy to inside information of the actual situation in the No Fire Zone.
    Tamil Net, Wednesday, 20 May 2009 reported “Noting that the slow genocide of Tamils in Sri Lanka accelerated to more than 10,000 killed in the last few months, far exceeding the horrors of Srebrenica.”
    These naysayers should come out with the names and addresses of the civilians they claim to have been killed during the last stages of the war.

  • 4
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    The two Ronnies, Padraig & Roberts, Morcambe & Wise, Abbott & Costello, Duckworth & Lewis, Tom & Jerry…they are my all time favourite comedians. :)

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