‘Brass’ spills the beans
By Tissa Ravindra Perera
Tiger leaders and cadres who surrendered during the final stages of the
Wanni battle, are spilling the beans on their secretive organisation,
and helping security forces recover more and more arms caches
information elicited by Intelligence, the armed forces were able to
unearth more heavy weapons and other items in the last LTTE stronghold
throughout this week. Even Tiger leaders who fought until the last are
fast volunteering information.
They have disclosed to Military
Intelligence hitherto unknown details of the fledgling Tiger air wing.
As a result, the Intelligence Unit attached to 56 Division, was able to
get hold of pictures of the Tiger air wing leaders and recover important
documents from Vellamullaivaikkal.
Details of Prabakaran’s daughter, Dwaraka’s
death, so far unknown, were also disclosed by a ‘top’ Tiger.
Dwaraka had been with the ‘Sodia’ regiment along with other female
cadres during the final battle in Vellamullaivaikkal, when she was
killed by artillery fire, and they had performed her last rites in the
According to this informant, she died on May 12, 2009,
around 9:30 am. Before her death she had been made a ‘Lt. Col.’ of that
regiment by the Tiger leader, to the utter dismay of its members, though
they had not outwardly shown their disapproval.
Surrendees and POWs
General Sarath Fonseka disclosed that about 22,000
terrorists were killed and about 10,000 captured during the battles for
Tiger fortresses in Wanni. He made this announcement during the launch
of the book “The Final Great Wanni Battle”, by this writer, at the
National Library and Documentation Services Board on Wednesday.
10,000 Tiger cadres captured by the security forces, 9,000 have been
sent for rehabilitation, while steps are being taken to prosecute the
balance 1,000. Those to be brought before the law are those who did not
surrender, but taken into custody while hiding in welfare camps as IDPs.
Among them are senior cadres who have served the organisation for 15 to
16 years, the Army Commander said.
Human cost of war
Although this victory is outwardly seen as
one won with ease, but in fact was won with much dedication and
sacrifice of life. “This victory cost the lives of 5,200 of my soldiers,
while 19,000 others were wounded”, the Commander recalled.
the inside story that made the Wanni victory possible, he said that due
to the President handling the political aspects without blemish and the
President and Secretary of Defence giving the necessary backup and
correct leadership, he was able to successfully lead his men to victory,
and “nobody can challenge our success”.
Hunt for ‘rogue’ Tigers
The forces are now involved in taking on the few LTTE stragglers still
haunting the jungles of the East. A few of the Infantry battalions that
fought in Wanni battles and small contingents of Commandos and Special
Forces are engaged in this final search operation for Tiger terrorists.
This could be the end of the road for remaining terrorist leaders like
Ram, Nagulan and others known to be in Yala, Buttala and
On the July 3, Mohandas, leader of
Kirankulam in the East, was shot and caught while trying to escape
across the Kirankulam lagoon. A soldier on the security ring died, while
two others were wounded in this clash. This is the first death of a
soldier since the death of Prabhakaran on May 19. Mohandas, a ‘Lt.
Col.’, had been earlier assigned the task of crippling life in the East
An air ticket, money and a cyanide capsule was found on
him. It is suspected that his plan was to escape to a foreign country
and get his family down later. Military Intelligence has been entrusted
with the task of tracking down such remaining Tiger cadres in the East.
Meanwhile, an operation to disarm armed gangs in the East, was also
launched under the leadership of DIG Edison Gunatillaka, who warned the
gangs that none other than the forces are licensed to carry arms.
Therefore, he reiterated that they should hand over their weapons while
the going was good.
The disarming of the Jihadists and other armed Muslim extremists will be
undertaken in this operation, along with those armed cadres that earlier
aligned with Pillaiyan and Karuna
Clearance and resettlement
Meanwhile, Gen. Sarath Fonseka
undertook a tour of Wanni this week to assess the requirements for
implementing future forward field requirements.
December, the west of the A-9 (Kandy-Jaffna) will be resettled by its
The de-mining in the Madhu region and 10 liberated villages in the Weli
Oya area is being carried out at present and will be resettled no sooner
the tasks are completed. With the resettlement of people west of A-9 in
Pooneryn and Mannar, the A-32 supply route is scheduled to be reopened
Lt. Col. Kithsiri Liyanage who commanded 7
Sinha Regiment with distinction during Wanni battles, has been appointed
Commander 67-2 Brigade under Task Force VII. This Brigade is scheduled
to be stationed at Elephant Pass. Col. Hemantha Karanaratne has been
made Commander 66-2 Brigade, which is scheduled to be based in Pooneryn.
Five Brigadiers promoted Majors General
President Mahinda Rajapaksa has approved the promotion of five
Brigadiers to the rank of Major General this week. They are Military
Planning Director Brig. Mahesh Senanayaka, Presidential Security Chief
Brig. Jagath Alwis, Commander 22 Division Brig. Janaka Walgama,
Financial Director General of the Army Brig. H.L. Weeratunga and
Quartermaster General Brig. L.R. Wijetunga.
Commander Talks to Wanni Ground
COMMANDER of the Army General Sarath Fonseka flew to Vavuniya on
Thursday (9) morning, along with field senior officers at Army
Headquarters for another fact-finding mission.
Commander Security Forces Headquarters, Wanni (SFHQ-W) Major General
Jagath Jayasuriya who received the visiting Army chief briefed him on
development regarding overall security situation in the area.
A complete updated picture of the security in different areas was also
presented to the Army Commander by respective senior Commanders who were
present at the meeting.
Commanders of SFHQ Kilinochchi and Mullaittivu Divisions and Task Force
attended the conference.