Exposing the Deadly Truth in Sri Lanka

Silver Linings in the Black Clouds of Genocide

Millions of Tamils around the world thank the German-based Journalists for Democracy in Sri Lanka (JDSL) for exposing the truth. The Sri Lankan armed forces, in the guise of fighting terrorism, slaughtered Tamil captives in Vanni earlier this year. The Tamils thank Channel 4 for breaking the story along with the video depicting the extra-judicial execution.

While the Tamils were being butchered by the Sri Lankan State, global Tamils protested peacefully. Despite that, the UN and many other powerful countries failed to support the victims of State terrorism other than issuing statements condemning the Sri Lankan State and the LTTE. And finally, the world demanded the Tamils’ defensive cadres, the LTTE, to silence their guns. But they failed to demand the Sri Lankan armed forces to follow suit. Furthermore, the Sri Lankan State punished civilians by keeping them in the Nazi-style camps tightly guarded by the armed forces in the militarized barbed-wire camps in Vavuniya without providing any basic facilities.

Australia was one of the countries that cried foul when thousands of Tamils were butchered by the Sri Lankan Sate. Despite all the hardships the Tamils endured–poor health, sanitation, lack of food and water, not to mention the further hardship the Tamils will face in the coming monsoon season–Australia extended their warmest greetings to Sri Lanka and consolidated their trade between the two countries. Thanks to Australia and others who continue to extend friendly relations with the terrorist States who have killed tens of thousands with abysmal records of human rights abuses. Sri Lanka’s intention to treat Tamils as human beings has vanished forever and for them, Tamils are history. Sri Lanka still fails to recognise the aspirations of the Tamil people as a nation.

Tamils’ claims validated

Although many countries did not hear the pleas of the global Tamils, the video shown on Channel 4, and thereafter the images circulating on the internet, reveal the mutilated, naked bodies of Tamil captives, both men and women. Many bodies in the pictures lacked torsos, limbs, and hands. While one image showed just the skeletal remains of the upper part of a body, another showed badly eaten away portions of the head of a slain man.

The video is more than written evidence to prove and to bring the Sri Lankan State to justice for unleashing the ethnic cleansing, especially targeted upon the Tamils. The Sinhala soldiers who speak in the Sinhala language did everything possible as vultures in the background of the dead waiting to prey on the dead bodies. These images are nauseating, reflecting the extreme chauvinistic and morbid tendencies of the Sinhala chauvinism perpetuated on the Tamils.

The UN wants the Sri Lankan government to set up an independent probe into the authenticity of a video clip aired on the BBC Channel, allegedly showing Sri Lankan troops executing prisoners. If the Sri Lankan government’s denial is validated as a result of an inquiry, the international community can rest easy and the government will have been vindicated according to them. They will use any excuse to absolve the Sri Lankan government of their crimes against humanity and enhance their impunity. Confident of the Sri Lankan government again cheating on this investigation which he describing the images as “horrendous,” the official said that it indicated a serious violation of international law if found to be authentic. The influence of the triple gem bestowed on Ban ki Moon and other UN officials visiting Sri Lanka prevails. The UN is as corrupt as the Sri Lankan government. They can do business together. It is indeed a disgrace that the UN has descended to this base level.

Now, the UN and the world community who speak of crimes against humanity in the civilized world have the right to speak out and bring the perpetrators of such crimes to book. Although Sri Lanka is not a signatory to the International Criminal Court (ICC), ICC can book Sri Lanka as they did to other countries, especially of East European and African countries in the past. There are a few options, such as judges of the court. Also, several member states of the ICC can also formally file the case against Sri Lanka, and many other viable options are available to book Sri Lanka. But, the question is whether the UN and the ICC will do it.

Norway has already sounded out that they will support the move to charge Sri Lanka because Sri Lanka has unleashed violence on Tamils. Based on the video footage by the British broadcasting Channel 4 that depicted the cruel killings of Tamils, international peacemaker and Norwegian External Affairs Minister Erik Solheim has suggested that the global community investigate the war crimes committed by Sri Lanka.

Earlier, Erik Solheim led the peace keeping time on behalf of UN to settle the dispute between the LTTE and the Sri Lankan government which resulted in futility. Further, he said he would urge for the UN and the International Community to commence an investigation. He said: “The Channel 4 video is more than solid evidence to accuse the government and those who committed the crime is punishable under law. Thousands of Tamils went missing during the bloody war and no one has questioned the government regarding this violation of Human Rights. The ruling government has wilfully ignored human rights and laid rules of their own. Without evidences, the UN was unable to proceed, but now we have the necessary docs to bring them under custody. Moreover, they have committed the punishable crime of kidnapping international journalists with their white van and I will urge the envoy to put an end to this atrocity.”

Sri Lanka condemns Norway and Britain

Upon bringing to light the video, the Sri Lankan President’s Media Unit released a statement saying the government “will make a strong protest to Channel 4 with regard to the contents of this video and also bring the matter to the notice of the relevant authorities…” It described the footage as “false and doctored.” It promised to “pursue remedies available with regard to the distortion of truth.”

Further, Sri Lankan leaders issued statements condemning Britain for permitting the Channel 4 broadcast without investigations. Little do they realise that in Britain, the mother of Parliamentary democracy, freedom of expression, even by the media, is sacred. Channel 4 representative Mr. Jonathan Miller commented on the Sri Lanka Government denial, saying: “I think Steven Spielberg would have had a hard job staging this grim scene. We were unable to verify the authenticity of the footage, but we did our level best to do so and we would not have broadcast our report had we not been confident with the expert analysis we received. Before we went to air, I watched the video with a leading Sri Lankan human rights investigator – a Sinhalese himself – who provided forensic insights into its authenticity. This investigator has many years of experience looking into abuses and impunity in his homeland, but he’d never seen anything like this.”

A column under the heading ‘Heil Solheim’ written by Gomin Dayasri on August 31 appearing in the Sri Lanka’s Ministry of Defence website, badly condemned the Norwegian Minister, Erik Solheim, and Channel 4. It further says that such periodic releases through friendly media sources are a part of LTTE false propaganda to discredit the Sri Lankan Forces, which have been duly exposed previously. There is not an iota of substance to relate it to Sri Lankan forces except for representations made in the voice cast of the narrator from the studio.

The writer claims, “For the record, previously too, Channel Four journalists were deported from the country for disseminating falsified pictorials, which they did not challenge. Channel Four has a history of desiring to discredit Sri Lanka and has fallen foul of the authorities and harbours a grievance; which does not make it a reliable objective media presenter.”

The statements from Sri Lankan leaders and the articles by well known Sinhala chauvinists appearing in the government websites clearly show that Sri Lanka will not respond cordially with the countries coming against the violations committed by the Sri Lankan State. Even powerful regional associations such as the European Union and NATO have done nothing to disapprove of Sri Lankan atrocities.

It is an irony that the descendant members of one of the most ancient civilizations in the world, such as the Mohenjo-Daro and Harappa in Asia, cannot stand up, speak and join with the civilized world in condemning such barbarities. It is also because those who claim to be champions of such a civilization have disgracefully and unashamedly traded and capitulated its reputation for positions, wealth and power. Take the case of Karunanidhi asking the Indian Central government to verify the authenticity of the Channel 4 exposition as if it would ever happen.

And the global community remains a mute spectator; the Tamil people, who make up nearly 80 million world-wide, have not yet lost faith in the global governments completely.

As a civilized nation, Tamils gratefully extend their sincere thanks to BBC Channel 4 and JDSL for having the courage and the unrelenting efforts in revealing the truth which we believe they will continue to do. It is very important that, in the interests of justice against crimes against humanity, the veracity of the tapes in question be independently investigated once again and the world be told of their authenticity.

The Sri Lankan President Rajapaksa, who was to attend the UN sessions in New York with the usual entourage of 150 persons to prop him up, we are informed, has now chosen to attend the 40th anniversary of the founding of an international terrorist State of Libya under Gaddhafi. He will, we are sure, be more at home there, than in the company of some UN representatives. Ban ki Moon will undoubtedly miss him.

Satheesan Kumaaran writes on Sri Lanka and be reached at: satheesan_kumaaran@yahoo.com. Read other articles by Satheesan.

23 comments on this article so far ...

Comments RSS feed

  1. Chanel Harmer said on September 5th, 2009 at 10:23am #

    The author’s name suggests he is Tamil. I just read the following article today, and would like to know what Satheesan Kumaaran’s immigration status is.

    Reference:

    Did the lure of refugee status keep funding and support for Sri Lanka’s war alive?
    Source: http://bailaman.blogspot.com/2009/09/did-lure-of-refugee-status-keep-funding.html

  2. shan777 said on September 5th, 2009 at 4:51pm #

    The clip does not show the men being shot. You can’t shoot the actors for real, can you?

  3. Gautham said on September 5th, 2009 at 6:05pm #

    I am from India and i speak Tamil. Every article written by srilankan tamils say that 70 million tamils are together and support the views taken the LTTE supporters. The recently concluded elections in India speak for itself and clearly every Indian tamil is against LTTE and thier PR campaign. LTTE supported by Jafna tamils have killed more tamils than singalese could.

  4. Thamilarasan Velmurugan said on September 5th, 2009 at 7:44pm #

    Mr.Chanel Harmer, your question suggest what kind of person you will be. FYI, I am a Thamil. The world is so bad that most of them (I mean %) think that they should talk for their own people. The percentage is increasing (that means there will be little left to voice for the voiceless). As a human being I will voice for the voiceless it doesn’t matter what race the people belongs to. You are not talking about the main problem and voilation of humanitarian law that is really bad. The whole world shouted against the LTTE, stopped their resources by banning them now not taking any measure to stop the Sri Lankan terror state. If you had taken that stand what should be your stand now? Our culture is very old and we have seen ups and downs and stood many invasion physical and cultural. Yes it took its own toll but we still do have people who can understand the great culture and respect for other people. With the help from west the sri lankan terror state made the LTTE weak, now turning their back to the west when the west ask some question. Tamils lost their protectors but definitely understood the reality, if they didn’t then its time for them to go extinct. For the oppressor the resistance will be considered as terrorism and what they are doing is not state sponsored terrorism its just try to maintain law and order or fighting terrorism.

  5. Tamilian said on September 5th, 2009 at 8:40pm #

    “bailaman” is a pro sinhaleese website. This Sinhala propagandist white washed his name to be “Chanel Harmer” :) These Sinhala Nazis are incredibly in deceiving the world

  6. N.Balasubramaniam said on September 5th, 2009 at 9:06pm #

    The Co-Chairs asked the LTTE to surrender and for SL to cease fire. One party followed their lead and they were annihilated but the other who disobeyed is still pressing on with GENOCIDE of the Tamils. It is a systematic genocide going in Sri Lanka, we cannot tolerate it or we cannot be a silence spectator.Mrs. Indra Gandhi former Prime Minister of India as far back, in July 1983.
    The more brutal the government behaves towards the Tamils in the north, the more happier the south Sinhalese political electorates are – that is Sri lankan version of democracy since Independence.India’s support to Colombo Government is an atrocious crime. Tamils are undergoing unspeakable hardship, and the monstrosity is only matched by Nazis terror on Jews. The world had simply closed its eyes. The Tamils have reached a point that no amicable settlement is possible for cohabitation in a unified island. The Sovereignty of Tamil Nation is not negotiable

  7. Indian Tamil said on September 5th, 2009 at 10:39pm #

    Mr.Gautham- Eelam Tamils are only speaking against singala racist attitude and its genocidal government. People like u will speak more about LTTE , but u will not speak a word about singala racist regime. But dont say that all Indian Tamils are like you. Majority of Indian Tamils support freedom and liberation of Eelam.

  8. Roland Deschamps said on September 6th, 2009 at 2:42am #

    What pathetic drivel. If the Tamil nation is realistic enough, they will stop this fruitless campaign for an impossible utopia. The way they are going right now, they can only be seeking further ridicule and self-annihilation.

    It is better to recognize the ground reality. You are a minority everywhere in this world. Face it. Accept it. It is your only way to redemption.

    You are a minority in the western capitals you carry your campaign from. You are a minority in Sri Lanka, and there is no way you will be able to change that. Cooperate with the government of Sri Lanka to resolve your impasse, rather than try to whip up international opinion with the hope you will win a separate state through interventionist measures. There are many Tamils who are doing just this… Tamils who do not buy into your drivel.

    The rest of the world too are not entirely ignorant of your agendas. If the international community appears to be letting you down, it is not in spite of the Sri Lanka government… rather, it is because of your own hypocritical double standards throughout this conflict… double standards that manifest in the drivel written above. The world is not so blinded by propaganda that it cannot see.

  9. Thamilarasan Velmurugan said on September 6th, 2009 at 4:24am #

    Mr.Gautham, FYI, for your information I am from Thamil Nadu. How the congress party won the election is a known truth. How Karunanithi & congress alliance won in Tamil Nadu is a known fact. That is because of money, brute force and feeding false information or disinformation campaign. The media blockade in Tamil Nadu is real. If you think and tell India is worlds largest democracy think again. That could be possibly one place where over 100 convicted felons represent people. India also run camps where its own people are locked up. Rap & killing is going on there. What is happening in Manipur, Kashmir? Extra judicial killings yes they do have. Politicians are making Tamil Nadu people are dump by giving govt funded TV & Rs.1 rice so that they can eat, watch TV and vote for some actor and believe whatever the idiot box says. If a Tamil from Tamil Nadu says he is proud of being Indian that is nothing but ignorance! India is basically not a one country, too many countries bound together by the British. People like karunanithi (current CM) is looting the state as much as possible and we Tamils has to pay the price someday. When people realize it may be too late and too costly that they elected some thug for the free TV, Rs.1000-2000. Please watch the first 20 minutes of this documentary.. http://www.sbs.com.au/dateline/story/watch/id/552344/n/India-s-Maoist-Revolution

  10. Thamilarasan Velmurugan said on September 6th, 2009 at 4:34am #

    shan77, they purposefully stopped preferring not to shown the violent/barbaric act by the sinhalese army. Many Tamils knew this is going on for a long time this is the first time the outside people see thru channel4. Do you think the LTTE people had cyanide tide around their neck for fun? They have seen tortures beyond imagination and more. they prefer to die rather than going thru tremendous pain before get a shot like this. Unfortunately the bloody thirsty, sexually fanatic sinhalese army even undress the dead people and having fun with it such a dirty minded people. For people those who didn’t have a personal impact or can’t put the situation in their shoes this may not make sense. To have a humanitarian feeling of course you don’t need to be a Tamil just being a person with heart beat is more than enough.

  11. vrpatil said on September 6th, 2009 at 4:34am #

    One fellow has written that Tamils in Tamilanadu supported GOSL against LTTE and Srilankan Tamils.Most probably he has forgotten the drama played by Central and State Govts during election time by ‘fasting untill death’ and ‘Central Govt pressing for cease fire’.After these two dramas,elections conducted in Tamilnadu and final battle in Srilanka started after May 13,2009. 5:00PM IST(Final day of last phase elections)

  12. Vasanthakumar. said on September 6th, 2009 at 5:24am #

    It is a preplaned violation of human rights gainst the tamils in Srilanka. This type of genocide acts against the Tamils cannot be forgiven. If the international community allow this cruel acts against the human rights it proves discriminating the Tamil Community. So please findout the real criminals agains the Taimils. Our hope is on Justice.

  13. Sundaravadivel said on September 6th, 2009 at 7:16am #

    To the “Indian Tamil Gautham”:
    I am also a Tamil from Tamilnadu, India. I closely followed how the elections were conducted, how money was used to buy votes. Not only myself, but the whole world knows this shame. Everyone sees how the govt is now using its machinery to oppress the democratic voices. Do not sing to your own choir about the beauty of democratic voice. People like you may be unsupportive of Eelam Tamils. But there are lakhs who have some heart, mind and conscience who support Eelam Tamils. Such people will continue to raise their voices against human right abuses by the Sri Lankan government.

  14. Gautham said on September 6th, 2009 at 2:44pm #

    Brahmins had more than 50% of government positions in Tamilnadu before dravidian movement started. Now, we have under 5% representation in government. SO in under 50 years, brahmins have been marginalized to a great extent in tamilnadu. So i dont understand when the srilankan tamils talk about systemayic discrimination for the last 50 years. thats exactly what your dravidian movement did to us. There is so much hypocrisy in thier views.

    Can someone explain this hypocrisy?

    I hope they do what the brahmins did. Brahmins got out of tamilnadu and are one of the most vibrant communities in india and have contributed a lot towards science and technology even though they are still being discrimanted.

  15. Kannambha Rao said on September 6th, 2009 at 6:54pm #

    Gautham
    what is your point/
    1. Is it that Tamils should accept the discrimination and continue to have their exodus?

    How many Brahmins died in Tamilnadu? After all, The Hindu Ram, Thuglak Cho Ramasamy and One mama army Subramania Swamy are really powerful afterall in the north indian media to lie about tamils
    Pathetic. Do not get driven by blind Patriotism and castiesm>

  16. Gautham said on September 6th, 2009 at 7:38pm #

    I am not driven by blind castiesm. My point is that all tamils who want seperate homeland because of discrimination should do an introspection and find out if they have done the same to others.

    They need to understand What goes round comes around.

  17. Lex said on September 6th, 2009 at 9:50pm #

    Gautham:

    You are comparing apples and oranges. Sri Lankan-State-supported genocide againt Tamils was carried out starting in 1956, more than 25 years before LTTE was born. Tamils in Sri Lanka is not an ethinic minority, but a Nation with a homeland with distiinct larguage and cluture who has the right to self-determination under UN Charter.

    Tamils in Sri Lanka are not opposed to affirmative action programs in jobs or university admission to level the playing field for people from under developed areas. What happened in Sri Lanka was that policies were implemneted with the aim of marginalizing Tamils; for example the Singhala Only act of 1956 was enatced to deprive government jobs for Tamils who can not speak Singhala.

    I am glad to hear that brhamins had the means and ways to get out of Tamil Nadu! Sri Lankan Tamils have no place to go!!

  18. Sivasubramaniam said on September 7th, 2009 at 12:58am #

    Congrats for your bold forthright views. That the Rajapakse clan Sinhalese are congenital liers have to be challenged at every turn. Some comments in this blog have racial venom. yet we have to continue to fight the genocide.

    V S Subramaniam

  19. David W said on September 7th, 2009 at 7:56am #

    Discrimination existed in Sri Lanka when blacks were still in the “back of the bus.” Sri Lanka is no longer the 1950s. You guys must read this if you think genocide took place in Sri Lanka.

    Canada had to put out public service messages to educate their Tamil public who only read propaganda like the article above.

    http://www.mackenzieinstitute.com/2009/genocide-talk020609.htm

    The Mackenzie Institute

    The Institute was formed in 1986 to provide research and comment on such diverse subjects as terrorism, organized crime, political extremism, propaganda, conflict and other such matters. It does not shy away from controversy.

    The Institute holds to the proposition that our democratic institutions need to be defended and enhanced, and works to do what it can to protect the stability of Canadian society.

    The Mackenzie Institute
    PO Box 338, Adelaide Station
    Toronto, Ontario
    M5C-2J4
    Tel: 416-686-4063.
    ac.tenllebnull@etutitsnieiznekcam
    http://www.mackenzieinstitute.com

  20. Raman said on September 7th, 2009 at 11:31am #

    I am a Sri Lankan Tamil born and raised in Wellawatte, Colombo. I read that Bailaman blog daily. If you call him Sinhalese propaganda, why then does he criticise the Sinhalese in this post? Why does he call for an investigation into the execution video? Someone please explain?

    http://bailaman.blogspot.com/2009/08/execution-video-raises-doubts-over-sri.html

  21. Mawatha Silva said on September 9th, 2009 at 12:28pm #

    The ruthless Sri Lankan regime slaughtered thousands of innocents.

    Now we are letting the Tamils to languish in the concentration camps is another example that we have become real hypocrites who have corrupt souls.

    Playing cricket for an example, with a country that is flowing with the blood of the innocent men, women and children, shows that we no longer have any moral principles to guide our lives.

    We (IC) are now even quite comfortable to sit and have tea with a Hannibal while his hands are still stained with the blood and his room is filled with the stink of rotting human flesh.

  22. Mawatha Silva said on September 11th, 2009 at 1:44pm #

    Tragedy is a norm in Sri Lankan Concentration camps….

    A malnourished IDP child slowly dying..
    http://transcurrents.com/tc/2009/09/govt_violates_constitution_by.html

  23. Mawatha Silva said on September 21st, 2009 at 3:41pm #

    Horrific pictures of torture, rape and murder of female combatants who surrendered to brutal Sri Lankan Army
    http://www.warwithoutwitness.com/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=226:sri-lankan-army-war-crime-evidence-photo-srilankan-army-sexually-abusing-tamil-female-combatants-during-bloody-blood-bath-on-vanni-beaches&catid=40:photo

    SriLankan Army Sexually Abusing Tamil Female Combatants during bloody blood bath on vanni beaches on mid may 2009. These photos have been shot by Sri Lankan Army soldiers by Mobile Cameras ( K310i , W2001 and 5300 ) and released in a local sri lankan website as part of Sri Lankan Army Victory Campaign. These collection of photographs & Videos covers different incidents and different victims. The common thread among them is the sexual violence that had been practiced as a war strategy by Sri Lankan Government. It is clear evidence that sexual violence was a tool in the genocidal war and constitutes a war crime.