There is no end in sight to the LTTE using the CFA as a bludgeon to beat the security forces with. It has killed seven more soldiers in a mine blast in Jaffna on Tuesday. During the past few days it has accounted for fifteen soldiers and four civilians including a divisional secretary. They have become the sacrificial lamb on the altar of a ceasefire.
Nowhere else in the world would a sovereign state have tolerated such atrocities so subserviently. But, a prisoner of the donor community which is soft pedalling LTTE terror and using aid as a weapon, Sri Lanka cannot even defend herself. It looks as if the international community had mistaken Sri Lanka for a terror group and the LTTE a sovereign state.
Where are the co-chairs of the peace process? Apart from issuing statements which the LTTE spurns, what useful purpose have they served in helping Sri Lanka resolve the conflict? The US has issued a brief statement condemning the LTTE for the attack on Sunday. Even before the ink on it dried, the LTTE mounted yesterday`s attack. The US might consider recycling the present note to condemn that attack as well. Other countries will follow suit and at the end of the day, the LTTE will have gone Scot free. We would like to know from the UK, Norway and Japan what they think of the LTTE`s terror spree and what they are going to do about it.
When a massive Richard Armitage endorsed the Norwegian drafted CFA on behalf of mighty America, hope was expressed that the LTTE had its work cut out and it would be goaded into respecting the truce as and when the need arose. We pointed out in these columns that the LTTE was no respecter of international opinion and it wouldn`t hesitate to ask anyone to go to hell. The LTTE did just that when the US asked it to eschew violence. And the US has confined its role to throwing paper rockets at the Tigers. The UK, despite being a victim of terror herself, continues to harbour prominent LTTE leaders who are openly promoting terrorism against Sri Lanka, a member of the Commonwealth. Norway pours kroner into the LTTE`s war chest and Japan speaks no evil, sees no evil and hears no evil, when the LTTE unleashes terror. Is it that, as the critics of the co-chairs argue, those foreign do-gooders have ceased to be concerned about the peace process, having gained a foothold in a conflict in a region where they have a strategic interest?
Meanwhile, Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice has urged the European critics of the US to cooperate to fight terrorism. `Cooperate and not carp!` she has told them. She has vehemently defended America`s right to move terror suspects around for interrogation, while remaining non committal on the issue of the prisons for terror suspects in foreign countries. The US is doing what is good for her but who is cooperating with little Lanka not to fight but to defend herself against terrorism? Sri Lanka cannot at least send a policeman to capture a convicted paedophile in some parts of her own land, without him being captured and held in captivity.
Yesterday, we reported that India had asked the EU to impose a ban on the LTTE. India knows better than any other nation the LTTE for what it really is. India is speaking with the benefit of hindsight and her call should be answered if the EU is desirous of promoting global peace and democracy. How else can the EU deal with a terror group responsible for crimes such as murder, ethnic cleansing, extortion, kidnapping, abduction, torture, recruitment of child combatants, turning boys and girls into human bombs, political assassinations and bombing of civilians targets? The time has come for the EU to prove, to borrow a saying from President Bush and slightly adapt it, whether it is with barbarians or the civilised world.
We hear various intellectual dwarfs who pretend to be political pundits mouthing borrowed terms such as `failed state` ad nauseam. Some of those noodles are trying to stick the label on this country as well! Now that the co-chairs have failed to live up to the expectations of the peace loving people, what should those pundits call them? Failed co-chairs?
It is high time the co-chairs got their act together and told the LTTE enough is enough.