Ilankai Tamil Sangam

Association of Tamils of Sri Lanka in the USA

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TRO Abductions: Who Did It?

by Nimal

According to the Sri Lankan Foreign Minister, Mangala Samaraweera is the same who told the US media on his recent visit that “the LTTE is the godfather of modern terrorism,” and has elsewhere claimed that the Tamils Rehabilitation Organisation (TRO) is the “fund-raising arm of the Tamil Tigers,” both exaggerated statements. Samaraweera now tells everyone that the kidnappings of the TRO aid workers may be a staged hoax, and that there “are conflicting and contradictory statements” in the TRO side of the story.

As reported on 2/2/06, in ColomboPage, a TMVP spokesperson, Thooyavan, said, “TMVP is not that mad to kidnap LTTE personnel soon after declaring a unilateral ceasefire.” and made the same allegation as Samaraweera that “The LTTE will produce them with someone to come up before a group of LTTE media personnel to allege TMVP was behind the kidnapping sooner or later, once they had got the mileage from their propaganda.”

However Thooyavan also, according to ColomboPage, apparently went on to say that “If it is true that the TRO agents of the LTTE were kidnapped, then it is an open admission by the LTTE that it has lost its grip in the East because they can't give protection to their own TRO agents.”

If the LTTE did 'stage' the abductions, then it is taking a massive risk to the loss of its credibility and trust in any negotiations. Thus, it is also to the advantage of the Government of Sri Lanka (GOSL), not least given its current “war-wish” mindset, to pin this on the LTTE, or at least create some doubt in that direction.

Now there are only two main players involved: The LTTE on the one hand and on the other the GOSL. The GOSL includes the SL armed forces (SLAF) and the paramilitaries; the paramilitaries could not exist without GOSL support. Thus, since there are only two sides, whoever did NOT do it knows that they did not, but that the OTHER side did, - and this is known with certainty (because  there are only two sides).

Therefore, when Thooyavan says “If it is true that the TRO agents of the LTTE were kidnapped, then it is an open admission by the LTTE that it has lost its grip in the East because they can't give protection to their own TRO agents,” Thooyavan is very oddly admitting to the possibility that the LTTE may not have done it. This is odd because, if the LTTE indeed staged a hoax, then the GOSL (and therefore Samaraweera and Thooyan/TMVP) would know with absolute certainty that that is so – because there are only two sides! (There is no one else to pin things on – but perhaps in the future there will be an attempt to create such imaginary alternative secret groups that no one knows of.)

Indeed, if the GOSL (including the TMVP or other) did not do it, not only would they be absolutely certain that the LTTE did it, but would have real cause to celebrate because it is a huge opportunity to discredit the LTTE. And, as such, everyone involved on that side would have that knowledge passed on to them so as to get maximum advantage. And there would be no question of even supposing things such as “IF IT IS TRUE that the TRO agents of the LTTE were kidnapped …” There also would not be suppositions about staged hoaxes as per Samaraweera.

The contradictions are, therefore, with the GOSL parties. It looks like they have attempted at least two political strikes and in the process scored into their own goals! Firstly the purpose is, as mentioned earlier, to discredit the LTTE. Secondly, as Thooyavan/TMVP has suggested, if further to being untrustworthy, the LTTE is not in control and has “lost its grip in the East,” then the implication is that someone else needs to represent the Tamils of the East and that other also needs to be included in any future peace talks.

Unfortunately for GOSL/TMVP et al. the two strikes/purposes have contradicted themselves in this case.

Further, there could also be no direct open accusation in the case of lying, because, as long as contrary proof is still possible, it could destroy the lying party’s credibility. Thus, there can only be doubts expressed while buying time and studying the situation to manufacture ‘evidence’ against the other side.

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