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Feb-24-2012 03:33printcommentsVideo

Two of Sri Lanka's Foulest War Crimes

If members of the UNHRC in Geneva haven't heard this one, they certainly should... this government was willing to wound, kidnap, rape and slaughter journalists.

Body of reporter Shoba 'Isaippiriya' lies in foreground
Body of reporter Shoba 'Isaippiriya' lies in foreground.

(SALEM) - As we mourn the death of Sunday Times correspondent Marie Colvin, in Syria, we recall her dedicated work in Sri Lanka;

Marie Colvin - Sunday Times

where a government soldier threw a hand grenade that cost her an eye in 2001, while she reported on the front lines, covering the fighting between the Sri Lanka Army and LTTE rebels from the north.

Marie was targeted by soldiers after identifying herself as a reporter. Resistance fighters with the LTTE (Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam) Tamil Tigers, said it was an act of deliberate targeting and cowardice.

"After she held up her press credentials, they lobbed a grenade at her," Marie's mother Rosemary Colvin told the Oyster Bay Pilot.

"She was arrested and tied up for 10 hours without medical care before the US State Department could get her out." This deliberate attempt to kill a civilian reporter followed by ten hours without medical care, constitutes a foul crime of war.

Timing is Everything

Now Sri Lanka's head hangs in a political guillotine as its leaders face the United Nations Human Rights Council in Geneva, Switzerland, for war crime violations. Colvin's death is tragic, and her name is added to a long list of reporters, photographers and other media representatives who have been killed covering war. Sadly, one of the longest lists of reporters killed in war leads us back to Sri Lanka and as I noted in my article, Sri Lanka Tamil Genocide: Killing the Messenger, One sure way to keep a national genocide out of world view is to slay the journalists who would reveal the information.

Shoba, who used the name 'Isaippiriya', has become familiar to many as
a victim of the Sri Lanka Genocide. She was a journalist, singer & actor.

While going over material sent to the newsroom this morning, I realized that I needed a new photo from the Sri Lanka Genocide of Tamils, not that I don't have several hundred, but I wanted something different, and in this process I ran into somebody I recognized. She isn't someone I actually know or had the pleasure of meeting, in fact sadly, it was a photo of her abused corpse that caught my attention. It was the body of Shoba, the young reporter who was Murdered in the horrific Genocide that raged across the north of this island from 2005 to 2009.

I have written about her, I've seen her image alive and she was beautiful, and talented, but mostly I've come to know her as a victim of the Sri Lanka army who was not only Murdered as a part of this government's ethnic cleansing program; she was raped, sexually brutalized, first.

This woman was only 27. Of course the government would tell you she was a "terrorist operative" because she worked for a television station operated by the famed Tamil Tigers. This resistance group officially known as the LTTE or Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam, protected the native population of Tamils, who account for only 15% to 20% of the population of Sri Lanka.

This is a shocking but extremely important video clip from
Channel-4 in London, producers of 'Sri Lanka's Killing Fields'

My question to all who support this war against the Tamil population is simple... was Shoba (and the tens of thousands of women killed) the real enemy, and did she deserve a bout of sexual depravity before being killed?

The argument drones on and on, Tamil Tigers are a terrorist group... in that they absolutely did commit terrorist acts, a long list of them; however the violence began after Tamils had suffered 30 years of injustice. For three decades, the Tamils, who are mostly Hindu and partly Christian, practiced only a Gandhi-style form of non-violent resistance.

They did not want anything but autonomy, the desire was to form the breakaway state of Tamil Eelam and had they been able to, the Tamils would have secured among other things, equal rights and the preservation of their very culture, which was under threat on several fronts from the Buddhist Sinhalese government. It would have bruised the Sinhalese ego, but life could have gone on in harmony, I always believed that was the Buddhist way, but it is not; in the end all are the same human beings, incapable of resolving political strife without over-controlling minority populations and too often resorting to violence..

While most Tamils live in India, Sri Lankan Tamils maintain words from the language that have been dropped in India. Tamils have lived on Sri Lanka, or Ceylon as it was known for so many years under British occupation, for thousands of years. When the Tamils abandoned non-violent resistance, they struck government targets at first, but combat escalated greatly, and their culture became highly militaristic, that is a fact. The terrorist acts committed by the Tamil Tigers are horrific, but they were also an eventual, ultimate reaction.

A Life Cut Short

Shoba Isaippiriya

Isaippiriya was an LTTE media specialist

Shoba's nom de plume was Isaippiriya, she was loved by many.

The Sri Lanka military designated Isaippiriya a 'Lieutenant Colonel' in the LTTE. It is a promotion she never received, in fact this young woman suffered from health problems, she was a media specialist with the LTTE who produced reports for TamilNet. She never picked up a weapon, however she would die violently at the hands of Sri Lanka Army's 53 Division, on 18 May 2009.

When Isaippiriya's body was found, she had been stripped naked, with her hands tied behind her back. She had been sexually assaulted and shot dead, as seen in a video released Channel-4 in London.

She was TamilNet's Vanni correspondent. The LTTE did confirm that she had never taken part in military operations.

Shoba, a non-combatant, also lost her 6-month-old baby girl Akal

A source told TamilNet:

I am able to learn through those who have been at Mu'l'livaaykkaal in the final days of war, that Shoba remained unarmed and did not take part in combat.

Isaippiriya, who was born in 1982, graduated from Veampadi Girls High School in Jaffna in 1996. After the outbreak of war, she continued her studies in Vanni until joining the LTTE's media division. Her family says she was a gifted dancer.

She never took a life, yet in addition to losing her own life in the war, Shoba lost her 6-month-old baby girl Akal, this happened in the last stage of the war as Sri Lanka's politicians directed the indiscriminate bombardments of civilians. Akal suffered aspiration while in a bunker during a bombing at Kfir, TamilNet reports, she was taken to a hospital and died on 15 March 2009.

Of her death, TamilNet wrote:

Isaippriyaa’s case is a clear instance, raising many pertinent questions on behalf of thousands of victims like her, pointing at not only towards the Rajapaksa regime for the war crimes, but also towards the war crimes responsibility of the international system, the UN and the administrations of several countries.

The loss of Isaippiriya is especially significant because she was a well-known media personality.

Yet her fate was the same as so many tens of thousands who perished violently and against their will, often in front of their parents and children, far before their earthly time was through. The intentional grenade wounding of Marie Colvin in 2001, and the terrible ethnic cleansing Murder and sex abuse of Isaippiriya, are two of Sri Lanka's foulest and most disgusting war crimes, not just targeting journalists, but women. That is the bottom of the barrel for any country.

Terrorism and Genocide

Regarding the acts of the Tamil Tigers, I am often asked by Sinhalese Sri Lankans if I am aware of the history of the LTTE and the suicide missions they carried out over the years. I would venture to think that literally any writer who studies and researches this subject, would learn immediately that the Tigers are synonymous with the inception of suicide bombing. However, as one person of Tamil heritage advised, it is actually the Japanese Kamikaze that pioneered the suicide bomb during naval battles in the Second World War. The Tamil Tigers were among the first to actually wear these devices. Another aspect of the LTTE that its critics fail to recognize, is that they were a crack military fighting force and they were well trained, killing as many as 1000 in a single battle, sometimes more.

But no matter how you size it up, these acts listed below do not justify the mass slaughter of up to 160,000 people, that is the number of Tamils who ceased to exist after the summer of 2009. It is true that many are being held in captivity, and also that the status of a large number of these political prisoners of war, remains a mystery.

This information is from IRIN, humanitarian news and analysis - a service of the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs, published as the conflict was still raging, on 28 April 2009: SRI LANKA: Conflict timeline, and Sri Lanka profile last updated by The BBC 25 January 2012.

A chronology of key events

1971 - Sinhalese Marxist uprising led by students and activists.

1972 - Ceylon changes its name to Sri Lanka and Buddhism given primary place as country's religion, further antagonising Tamil minority.

1972: Velupillai Prabhakaran forms a militant group called the Tamil New Tigers (TNT).

1976: TNT changes its name to the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE).

1977 - Separatist Tamil United Liberation Front (TULF) party wins all seats in Tamil areas. Anti-Tamil riots leave more than 100 Tamils dead.

1981 Sinhala policemen accused of burning the Jaffna Public Library, causing further resentment in Tamil community.

1983, 23 July: LTTE attacks an army patrol in Jaffna, killing 13 soldiers and sparking anti-Tamil riots around the country, leaving several hundred dead.

1985, 8 July: Talks held between the Sri Lankan government and the LTTE for the first time in Thimpu, Bhutan.

1987, 29 July: Indo-Sri Lanka pact signed between President JR Jayawardena and Prime Minister of India Rajiv Gandhi. India deploys peace-keeping force to north and east Sri Lanka.

1987 - Government forces push LTTE back into northern city of Jaffna. Government signs accords creating new councils for Tamil areas in north and east and reaches agreement with India on deployment of Indian peace-keeping force.

1988 - Left-wing and nationalist Sinhalese JVP begins campaign against Indo-Sri Lankan agreement.

1990, 24 March: India withdraws troops due to clashes with the LTTE killing more than 1,200 Indian troops. Violence between Sri Lankan army and separatists escalates. "Second Eelam War" begins.

1990 June: LTTE kills hundreds of policemen in the east following breakdown of talks between the Tigers and the government of President Ranasinghe Premadasa.

Thousands of Muslims are expelled from northern areas by the LTTE.

1991, 21 May: Gandhi killed, an LTTE suicide bomber is implicated in this attack.

1993, 1 May: Premadasa killed by LTTE suicide cadres during a May Day rally in Colombo.

"Third Eelam War" begins

1995, January: Government of Chandrika Kumaratunge and LTTE agree to talks.

1995, April: Talks fail after the Tigers blow up two navy vessels.

1995, 2 December: Jaffna, the northern cultural and political nerve centre of the Tamils, falls under Sri Lanka army control.

1996, 31 January: Suicide bomb attack on the Central Bank building in the heart of Colombo kills more than 100 and injures 1,400.

1996, 24 July: Alleged LTTE bomb blast in a railway station in Dehiwela, south of Colombo, kills 70.

1996, 18 July: Army camp overrun by the LTTE near the northeastern town of Mullaitivu. More than 1,000 troops killed.

1998, 25 January: Suicide bomb attack on Sri Lanka's holiest Buddhist shrine, Dhaladha Maligawa (Temple of the Tooth), in the central town of Kandy, kills 17 people.

1998, 26 September: Tigers overrun Kilinochchi army camp, killing more than 1,000 government soldiers.

1999, December: LTTE attempts to assassinate President Chandrika Bandaranaike Kumaratunge; who survives.

2000, April: LTTE recaptures Elephant Pass, inflicting heavy damage on the Sri Lankan forces during the operation Unceasing Waves III.

2001, July: An LTTE suicide attack on Bandaranaike International airport kills 14.

2002, 22 February: Ceasefire agreement, brokered by Norway, signed by Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe and LTTE leader Prabhakaran.

2002, December: Government and LTTE agree to share power at peace talks in Norway.

De-commissioning of weapons begins; the road linking the Jaffna peninsula with the rest of Sri Lanka reopens after 12 years; passenger flights to Jaffna resume. Government lifts ban on Tamil Tigers. Rebels drop demand for separate state.

2003 April: LTTE pulls out of talks after six rounds of negotiations, citing inadequate steps taken to rebuild war-hit areas, however the cease fire holds.

2003 May: Country's worst-ever floods leave more than 200 people dead and drive some 4,000 people from their homes.

2004, 3 March: LTTE eastern military head, Vinayagamurthi Muralitharan, alias Karuna Amman, splits from the LTTE.

2004 July - Suicide bomb blast in Colombo - the first such incident since 2001.

2004 December - More than 30,000 people are killed when a tsunami, massive waves generated by a powerful undersea earthquake, devastate coastal communities.

2005, 7 February: LTTE political head for the eastern Districts of Batticaloa and Ampara, E. Kousalyan, killed with three others in Batticaloa town.

2005 June - Row over deal reached with Tamil Tiger rebels to share nearly $3bn in tsunami aid among Sinhalas, Tamils and Muslims.

2005, 12 August: Foreign Minister Lakshman Kadirgamar killed by suspected LTTE snipers in Colombo.

2005 November - Mahinda Rajapaksa, prime minister at the time, wins presidential elections. Most Tamils in areas controlled by the Tamil Tigers do not vote.

Mounting Violence

2005, 4 December: The LTTE commences claymore and grenade attacks targeting the Sri Lankan troops in the Jaffna peninsula.

2006 April - Attacks begin to escalate again.

2006 May - Tamil Tiger rebels attack a naval convoy near Jaffna.

2006, 15 June: More than 60 civilians killed in claymore mine attack allegedly by LTTE, targeting a civilian bus in Kebithigollewa, nearly 200km from Colombo.

2006, 20 July: LTTE closes the sluice gates at Mavilaru, south of the eastern coastal town of Trincomalee. Clashes erupt as army launches operations to gain control and succeeds.

2006 August - Tamil Tiger rebels and government forces resume fighting in the north-east in worst clashes since 2002 ceasefire. Government steadily drives Tamil Tigers out of eastern strongholds over following year.

2006 October - Peace talks fail in Geneva

2007, 5 January: Bomb attacks on public transport begin in Nittambuwa, about 20km east of Colombo, killing six people. Several bombs target public transport in the following months. The government blames the LTTE for the attacks.

2007, 15 January: Military captures Vakarai, a coastal town in Batticaloa District in the Eastern province.

2007, March: LTTE carries out its first air raid on Katunayake air base, about 20km north of Colombo. The Tigers also conduct an air attack on 29 April during the Cricket World Cup Final. The attack targets two fuel-storage facilities on the outskirts of Colombo. The Tigers carry out at least nine air attacks before 20 February 2009.

2007 June - Police force hundreds of Tamils out of the capital, citing security concerns. A court orders an end to the expulsions.

2007, 11 July: military captures Thoppigala, the last of the LTTE strongholds in the east after 13 years, thereby regaining the entire eastern province from the LTTE.

2007, 2 November: LTTE political wing leader SP Tamilselvan killed in an air raid by the Sri Lankan Air Force.

2008 January - Government pulls out of 2002 ceasefire agreement, launches massive offensive.

2008, 2 January: The government says it will withdraw from ceasefire agreement and does so on 14 January and intensifies attacks on the Tigers. The LTTE, however, states it will stick to the agreement.

2008 July - Sri Lankan military says it has captured the important Tamil Tiger naval base of Vidattaltivu in the north.

2008 October - Suicide bombing blamed by government on Tamil Tigers kills 27 people, including a former general, in the town of Anuradhpura.

2008 December - Sri Lankan troops and Tamil rebels claim to have inflicted heavy casualties on each other in fierce fighting in the north

2009, 2 January: Government troops capture Kilinochchi, de-facto capital of the LTTE, after 10 years.

2009, 25 January: Mullaithivu town captured by government troops.

2009, 12 February: Government declares a 12km-long "no fire zone" (NFZ) along the Mullaitivu western coast and calls on civilians to move into it for their own safety.

2009, 20 February: The LTTE conducts a suicide air attack in Colombo.

2008, September: All international humanitarian agencies and their foreign staff operating in the LTTE-controlled Kilinochchi and Mullaitivu districts are ordered by the government to relocate to Vavuniya.

2008 March: Sri Lankan troops launch operations to regain areas in the Vanni from the western flank. The number of civilians in the NFZ continues to grow.

2009, 14 April: LTTE says it is ready for negotiations, but the government refuses the offer, insisting it should lay down arms.

2009, 20 April: Thousands of civilians trapped in the NFZ cross into government-controlled areas where they are screened and placed in camps. Government gives LTTE 24 hours to surrender.

2009, 22 April: Former LTTE media coordinator Velayutham Dayanidhi, alias Daya Master, and the translator of former LTTE political wing head SP Tamilselvan, Kumar Pancharathnam, alias George, surrender to the military.

2009, 26 April: The LTTE declares a unilateral ceasefire as government forces surround an ever-shrinking NFZ. The government rejects the declaration, calling it a "joke". The UN estimates 50,000 civilians remain trapped in the NFZ.

2009, 27 April: Facing with diplomatic pressure to declare a ceasefire, Sri Lanka says its military is no longer using heavy weaponry and aerial bombing against the remaining few hundred rebels still fighting in the NFZ.

2009, 28 April: With more than 150,000 internally displaced persons (IDPs) in camps in Vavuniya, Jaffna, Mannar and Trincomalee, UN Emergency Relief Coordinator John Holmes urges that civilians who have been screened be given the chance to leave the camps and to rely on friends and family elsewhere.

2009 May - Government declares Tamil Tigers defeated after army forces overrun last patch of rebel-held territory in the northeast. Military says rebel leader Velupillai Prabhakaran was killed in the fighting. Tamil Tiger statement says the group will lay down its arms.

2009 August - New Tamil Tiger leader Selvarasa Pathmanathan captured overseas by Sri Lankan authorities.

First post-war local elections in north. Governing coalition wins in Jaffna but in Vavuniya voters back candidates who supported Tamil Tigers.

2009 October - Government announces early presidential and parliamentary elections.

2009 November - Opposition parties form alliance to fight elections. The new alliance includes Muslim and Tamil parties and is led by former prime minister Ranil Wickremesinghe.

Government says 100,000 refugees released from camps.

2009 December - European Union says will suspend Sri Lanka's preferential trade status over alleged human rights concerns.

Rajapaksa re-elected

2010 January - Incumbent Mahinda Rajapaksa wins presidential election by a big margin but the outcome is rejected by his main rival Gen Sarath Fonseka.

2010 February - Gen Fonseka is arrested. The government says he will be court-martialled on conspiracy charges. President Rajapaksa dissolves parliament, clearing way for elections in April.

2010 April - President Rajapaksa's ruling coalition wins landslide victory in parliamentary elections.

2010 August - Military court finds former army chief Sarath Fonseka guilty of involvement in politics while in uniform and sentences him to a dishonourable discharge.

2010 September - Parliament approves a constitutional change allowing President Rajapaksa to seek unlimited number of terms.

2011 April - UN says both sides in the Sri Lankan civil war committed atrocities against civilians and calls for an international investigation into possible war crimes. Sri Lanka says the report is biased.

2011 July - Sri Lanka's largest ethnic Tamil party, the Tamil National Alliance - wins two-thirds of local councils in the former war zone in the north and east.

2011 August - President Rajapaksa says his government will allow the expiry of state emergency laws which have been in place for most of the past 40 years.

Government introduces new legislation allowing the detention of people suspected of terror offences without charge.

2011 September - Parliament approves law allowing government to take over 37 businesses. Critics say they will be seized from opponents to reward supporters.

2012 January - 160 Islamic clerics expelled for violating visa regulations.

_________________________________________________________

Tim King, summer 2008, covering the Iraq War

Tim King: Salem-News.com Editor and Writer

Tim King has more than twenty years of experience on the west coast as a television news producer, photojournalist, reporter and assignment editor. In addition to his role as a war correspondent, this Los Angeles native serves as Salem-News.com's Executive News Editor. Tim spent the winter of 2006/07 covering the war in Afghanistan, and he was in Iraq over the summer of 2008, reporting from the war while embedded with both the U.S. Army and the Marines. Tim is a former U.S. Marine.

Tim holds awards for reporting, photography, writing and editing, including the Silver Spoke Award by the National Coalition of Motorcyclists (2011), Excellence in Journalism Award by the Oregon Confederation of Motorcycle Clubs (2010), Oregon AP Award for Spot News Photographer of the Year (2004), First-place Electronic Media Award in Spot News, Las Vegas, (1998), Oregon AP Cooperation Award (1991); and several others including the 2005 Red Cross Good Neighborhood Award for reporting. Tim has several years of experience in network affiliate news TV stations, having worked as a reporter and photographer at NBC, ABC and FOX stations in Arizona, Nevada and Oregon. Tim was a member of the National Press Photographer's Association for several years and is a current member of the Orange County Press Club.

Serving the community in very real terms, Salem-News.com is the nation's only truly independent high traffic news Website. As News Editor, Tim among other things, is responsible for publishing the original content of 102 Salem-News.com writers. He reminds viewers that emails are easily missed and urges those trying to reach him, to please send a second email if the first goes unanswered. Tim's Facebook page is http://www.facebook.com/TimKing.Reporter You can write to Tim at this address: newsroom@salem-news.com





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Indian November 10, 2013 9:38 am (Pacific time)

Well to me the question is - were LTTE any less gruesome? The body of Indian PM Rajiv Gandhi was also stripped naked when killed. Better to be stripped naked by humans than a bomb!!!! Tamils should be crushed like roaches under a boot else they will destroy the whole fabric of SL and also India

What a disgusting comparative.  You see a parallel between an assassination and murderous perverts raping young girls?  What kind of sick and twisted logic is that anyway?  

As for the case involving Gandhi I suggest the following:

 'Unanswered Questions in Rajiv Gandhi Assassination Case' - Thirumurugan Gandhi Special to Salem-News.com

 Murugan, Santhan, Perarivalan, and the Academic Achievements of Assassins - Tim King Salem-News.com

 


tamilian February 27, 2013 12:13 pm (Pacific time)

gottabaya rajapakshe - first candidateto be raped


TAMILIAN February 27, 2013 11:51 am (Pacific time)

u r a not a buddhist country u r a rapist country better worship reproductive organs


TAMILIAN February 27, 2013 11:49 am (Pacific time)

to all srlankanks posted here u r not a buddhist country u r a rapist country better worship female and male sex organs rather than buddha punish LTTE if they have made mistake not civilians u people should be castrated for ur irrestible sex behaviour manners


TAMILIAN February 27, 2013 11:46 am (Pacific time)

i will say one thing,,for watever LTTE has done civilians cannt be punished. When u read the report by HRW i can say to those srilankans who had posted here,, u r not a buddisht country,, u r a rapist country and u better have uvula and penis as idols of worship rather having buddha. u dont have any mannerism ,,,always u need sex,,??? irrestible for u people and particularly ur army


Ks December 25, 2012 11:45 pm (Pacific time)

Im ready f*ck army


one who live on SL April 20, 2012 9:20 am (Pacific time)

begger are more respectable people than those who write the lies to earn some dollers


Himanshu March 17, 2012 6:37 am (Pacific time)

You should not shock to hear that LTTE as a rsrrotiet group because they are rsrrotiet. I want to say that you are covered with a myth. They are not reprsentatives off tamil people. LTTE is destroying all young life and young tamil generation by doing this war. They force children to join this war(I have practical experiences). All people suffer not because of government but of LLTE. Because of this rsrrotiet, lost so many valuable tamil and sinhala life. Prebakaran only think about his power. Can you guarante if prebakaran win this he won,t use his wepons to dominate people. At north east more than 300 000 sinhala and muslim people were displaced and their lands are occupied by LTTE. They have killed so many innocent sinhala and muslim people. Onnce near welikanda, LTTE killed all villagers in a sinhal village. They have killed prengant women and a 2 months child not even shooting but using axes(CUTING). More than 10 000 sinhala people have killed by LTTE. They do not want anything else but ruling power of north.(They already lost east) LTTEs first attack was dore appa one great tamil leader. They not only killed sinhala leaders but so many tamil leaders too. They killed any person who talk against them. People in north fear to talk aginst LTTE if they do so their families and life will go to heven as standing for truth. LTTE and their suppoters lie whloe world. They took advantages of some misleading politicain to gain their power.It doesn't mean all them are same. Solution for this problem is finsh all rsrrotiet and give political solution to tamil people(not to LTTE). I can remember once they kill about 60 buddhist monks at aranthalawa while traveling on a bus. I am dissapointing to mention them as rebels they are truely rsrrotiet,creatures. LTTE must wipe out from sri lanka. All foreign nation should help sri lankan army to finish this war. Any tamil people can go any where of country but not sinhala and muslim people. They can even set foot northen people. LTTE killed so many sinhala people while occuping norhern area.Still they are doing so by bomb blasting at other areas of the country. Tamil people at north suffer o poverty because of LTTE as they don't let goverment to devolop this areas. If they let they surely know not a single people stay with them. what they want is to let people to suffer and take advantage to join rsrrotiet.All must get together to wipe out LTTE and let all inocent tamil people to live free.Proud to be a sri lankan.Yours,Niranjan,(Totaly Sri lankan)


shan March 11, 2012 11:27 am (Pacific time)

Thanks for this article


Common sense February 29, 2012 7:34 am (Pacific time)

Tim,
This is my last response to you. Sadly, my personal impression is you are lost. You have been taken in for a ride by the Tamil Diaspora who still supports the LTTE. Reading your responses, I feel the ultimate goal of you and the LTTE Diaspora is to punish the Government and the leaders involved for wiping off terrorism from that country. Even that happens nothing is going to change for the Tamil people until legitimate negotiations without violence take root. Your vision for “autonomy in the form of Tamil Eelam” is doubtful to materialize specially with a minority of about 10%. If it happens the whole world will be in turmoil, every minority group asking for their own Elam. Imagine Elam of Hispaniola in Texas or Elam of India in south London! However, I respect your beliefs and continued attempts to support this terror group. My only request is condemn violence while doing so.

Tim King: I believe the figure is more like 18%.  Yes, let us all hope and pray for an end to violence, sorry it came to this.


really?? February 28, 2012 8:44 pm (Pacific time)

dear common sense, Mr. king like many other western "journalists" has decided on his little story and has spent a lot of time collecting facts to support it. stop wasting your time trying to make him see reason.


Common sense February 28, 2012 5:03 pm (Pacific time)

Tim,
You are doing a disservice to the Tamil race. You not only lack knowledge of the real situation that prevailed in Sri Lanka, you by giving a voice to a ruthless terror group encourage them to continue in a violent path against the majority of the people of Sri Lanka.

 Tim King: Look, there was a cease fire agreement in place when this happened and the government broke it, do you forget that part.  Rajapaksa attacked the Tamils for the same reason Bush attacked Iraq; because of lingering hatred and because he could.  As for doing a disservice to the Tamil race, I have to say that there is no story subject I have ever covered where so many people (Tamils) wrote to thank me for helping expose their tragedy, and while I get my share of hate mail also, I must say that many of the people who write to thank me via email are Sinhalese, these are the people who feel terrible for what happened and hold only the government accountable.  Anyone who doubts the support only needs to read my previous articles, some have literally hundreds of comments, the majority appreciative and supportive.  I have no ax to grind with people who accept responsibility for their mistakes and crimes.  There is a saying in our newsroom that is repeated frequently, that is TJP, for Truth, Justice and Peace.  That is the order, we must have truth and after that, justice can be assessed and doled out.  Then, and only then, is peace possible.  TJP's founder is our dear friend and fellow Salem-News.com writer, Ken O'Keefe, the famed Gaza activist, another former U.S. Marine.

This terror group never attempted to “establish peace and a degree of autonomy” at anytime prior, during or at the end of the 30 year bloody terror war.

 Tim King: Their demands were not met, and Sri Lanka brought Indian forces to fight the LTTE rather than resolving a number of burning issues all centering around the idea ultimately, of preserving the Tamil culture and seeing equal rights, through allowing autonomy in the form of Tamil Eelam.  In the end, what the LTTE did for 30 years and what the SLA did for 30 years, is all terrible, a long series of violent tragedy.  However the final push to the north, which is what this is all about, has little to do with what happened in the years leading up to it, they are separate matters.  I know you will not agree, but killing all of those civilians, it was so wrong, there is no way to represent it well from your side if the facts are on the table.  

Only negotiation they had with the help of Norwegians (which every time ended abruptly) was later found to be for re-arming to begin unleashing the terror. From where do you get your information? They were never there to “protect the people of the north” as you say. Instead they killed every Tamil politician they considered a threat to them. They forcibly recruited young Tamil men, women and children destroying their future. Shoba portrayed by your article is a good example. They made these young fighters wear cyanide capsules around their necks to be swallowed in case they were caught by the Army. This what you say protect people?

 Tim King: It was made exceedingly clear that poor Shoba was a media person, a dancer and entertainer.  She had health issues and was never a fighter, but to state that is again, to honor fact, and there is so little from that on your side of the argument.  I have read quite a bit it about the Tiger child soldiers, I know that the LTTE would visit schools and that the young people were very impressed by them, and they would sign up.  Until the very end, this is how the young people came to be associated with the LTTE, from what I understand and have read.  When I was 18 I was in the U.S. Marines and I had a 30-day window to work with my recruiter after basic training, he sent me to my high school to speak to the students while wearing my uniform.  The age of impression is in school and I think most military groups do this.  I know that after things became desperate, that the LTTE was taking every able bodied person they could and families hid their teenage sons and this is absolutely terrible.  However necessity is the mother of invention and if the stupid government had simply given the Tamils equal rights, way back after independence in 1948, none of this would have happened.  

What do you mean by “the Diaspora is a Tamil thing”? From where do you think the terror group found money to buy millions of Dollars worth of war machinery for 30 years? This money was all raised from the Tamil Diaspora in the West, some willingly and others under threat. From the beginning I have acknowledged the tragedy inflicted on the innocent civilians of both sides, but only as a result of the short sighted activity of this terror group. I request you not to be misinformed but condemn terror activity which will bring nothing but misery to all involved.

Tim King: Does it not all depends on which side of the fence you are standing on?  The Tamils for three generations did not fight,they followed, quite ironically, the teachings of Gandhi; non-violent resistance,  then when they did fight, they fought for keeps, and they killed a lot of people, many were innocent, however when you read the list in the chronology,  it isn't as you say.   The LTTE killed SLA soldiers, and Sinhalese attacked Tamil homes killing hundreds of people who had nothing to do with the combat; they were whipped into a fury by that monk you guys now want on your police commission,, anyone can read the history, you know about this incident, and I hope you don't excuse it.  The end is simply that we are talking about separate things, we need to talk about '05 to '09..  


Common sense February 28, 2012 1:26 pm (Pacific time)

Tim,
it is the LTTE Diaspora not the Tamil Diaspora. Majority of the Tamils do not support the LTTE. LTTE Diaspora is the group that financed this deadly war for 30 years which led to all this. You are so blinded not to know that. You haven't replied any of my questions. You do not have to keep repeating killings, rape, destruction etc. etc. as these are consequences of wars. That is why I say wars are dirty and try solving problems in non violent ways. Please concentrate your work on preventing terrorist’s wars. In this case the damages are already done and you can't do anything about it now.

Tim King: After trying for thirty years to establish peace and a degree of autonomy,  the LTTE was finally formed to protect the people of the north.  Thirty years of opportunity to fix things politically did not interest the Sinhala majority.  The LTTE, when it was formed, returned the terror that the government provided to them, tit for tat.  It is terrible to turn to violence, but more pathetic to not represent human beings who are suffering a tragedy.  The Diaspora is a Tamil thing, the LTTE is simply a factor.  If you want all Sri Lankans to be defined by the criminal acts of the SLA then keep it up, you know?  I haven't done that, however you refuse to acknowledge the tragedy that swept over these people.


Common sense February 28, 2012 10:28 am (Pacific time)

Tim,
Have I implicated that journalist should not travel to conflict areas? Never, I say that it should be done legally to avoid undesirable out comes. It is not that I meant “…one more death in SL doesn't need to be explained” but her actions explained what happened. If you are genuinely concerned about innocent civilians and journalists being killed in terrorists wars you should promote and write demanding that terrorist fighters wear uniforms so that they can be distinguished from the civilians. Also, if you analyze unbiased, the “terrible acts of military groups” often result from their inability to tell apart terrorists from civilians. The soldiers themselves are humans and they are quick to react to protect their lives when unaware who and where their enemy is. This is one reason I condemn terrorist’s wars and encourage you to promote non-violent ways to resolve conflicts. People who are involved/promote in terror activity reading your articles get the impression that they can rely on you as a voice when things go bad. This encourages more groups to raise arms for their causes. Punishing Armies and governments for their activities seems to be your goal. My question is will that prevent future occurrences? If the LTTE Diaspora continues in the same violent path what would you suggest the Sri Lankan Government forces do?

Tim King: First, it is the Tamil Diaspora, let's keep it in context.  Next, I have to assume you have not closely viewed SL's Killing Fields?  It's so easy, all over the Internet.   The SLA soldiers are laughing and encouraging each other to rape dead bodies, I mean it is sick.  They aren't scared or threatened, they are simply getting off on the rape and destruction and that is wanton behavior from a culture cultivated to hate, just like in Israel. 


sad February 28, 2012 7:08 am (Pacific time)

another mouthpiece of the eelam propaganda machine.


really?? February 28, 2012 6:14 am (Pacific time)

does this report look a tad biased to anyone??


Common sense February 27, 2012 5:03 pm (Pacific time)

I feel sad for both these “journalist” who left us. Let their souls rest in peace. However, I consider both these individuals’ needed to be smarter. What was Marie thinking when she did what she did in Sri Lanka? First she over stayed her visa in a foreign country then she disregarded the laws of the country (visiting an area without permission). Why did she do that? Is it because Sri Lanka is a third world country? Or she considers journalists are above the law? Unfortunately, we will never know. How about you, as a journalist do you consider yourself above the law? Thank god she only got injured in Sri Lanka. I feel Shoba was too young to understand the seriousness of what she was doing. She willingly worked for a prohibited (by the US too) terrorist organization. What was she thinking, to be the Barbara Walters of LTTE? I would blame the terror leaders for brain washing this beautiful young girl. Tim, let me beg you to use your journalistic talent to educate groups on perils of taking arms to solve problems. I do not need to remind you the old saying; one who live by the sword die by the sword.

Tim King: Of course that is true, but are you suggesting that, for example, journalists should never travel to Myanmar to expose the deeds of that military junta?  What if India says it is illegal to travel to Kashmir where so much suffering takes place?  I know you don't condone the outright attack by the SLA on Marie Colvin, but I sense a relief of sorts also that one more death in SL doesn't need to be explained.  Shoba was born where she was born, with the blood that coursed through her veins.  I do not want violence to ever occur, or social injustice.  I also don't want terrible acts of military groups to take place without the proper recourse.    


Arun February 26, 2012 9:39 am (Pacific time)

Tim I feel sorry for Mary van de Boer's comments, I wonder whether she has any human compassion. No civilized government will kill or commit mass murder of their own citizens. The terminology GENOCIDE is the perfect word for this unspeakable crime.

Tim King: Perfectly expressed Arun, thank you.


Mary van de Boer February 25, 2012 5:52 pm (Pacific time)

Tim, dod you get that dictionary? Do you admit it wasn't genocide? The reason civilians in the safe zone died, as the UN has explained numerous times, was because the Tamil Tigers used innocent Tamils as human shields. This is a fact which you continue to overlook. The Tigers moved their heavy artillery guns into these safe zones!

Tim King: Up to 160,000 human beings, possibly more,  constitutes Genocide by any standard.  The Tigers did things they should not do, but they were under a deadly attack by their own government.  and most people in that scenario make less than perfect decisions.  The Israelis love to kill Palestinian children and then turn around and claim they were 'human shields'.  Sorry but the concept you bring forth is an insult to many people, many.  And for the record I am not overlooking anything. The SLA had no right to attack anyone. 


stephen February 25, 2012 12:14 pm (Pacific time)

To John Brown..it was not bush, it was his bosses, same with many presidents before him, and obama is the worst of them all..The handlers used him for a race card, for the "black" thing and how far we have come from slavery etc..its all a hoax..it isnt bush, sr, or jr. nor clinton nor obama..it is their owners..Try and go against the owners as JFK did and they will blow your head off on mainstream tv...Getting the point here? Have you seen what they have done to Ron Paul? If Ron Paul continues, they will kill him too, or threaten his family like they did Ross Perot. Period


Anonymous February 25, 2012 8:49 am (Pacific time)

This is all propaganda. All these pictures are old ones that have been cropped and have been re-circulated for years. The United States will always supply weapons, ammo and intelligence to the government until they wipe out these vile subhuman islamic demons. Death to all terrorists, and live long and prosper Christians, God's true and only children. Semper Fi, and kill them all (terrosists) in the middle east, but let's hurry and track the domestic terrorists. No mercy to these demons, wipe them out, their whole families. Peace and love to all Christians.

Editor: First, this story is about Buddhists and Hindus, with a small number of Christians in the mix, who are also victims.  These photos are legitimate and they have influenced current decisions in the UN.  This individual knows nothing at all about the Christian faith, the first rule of thumb is that Christians don't call for violence or blood, they turn the other cheek.  This man is an imposter, a parade contestant, little more.


John Brown February 25, 2012 5:23 am (Pacific time)

Americans need to take notice, this is OUR former president George W Bush who arranged the chairs in the fatal positions. His aid allowed Rajapaksa to achieve the dreaded 'terrorist' designation for the LTTE and they were stripped from the bargaining table in the UN soon thereafter. Make this a subject with everyone you know, if this can happen in Sri Lanka, it can happen anywhere.


Mike Andro February 25, 2012 4:38 am (Pacific time)

Young Tamil mother,21 yrs old Sharmila Sathiyanathan and her 6 years old daughter Thilakshika has committed suicide by jumping in to a well in Sri Lanka due starvation and many rapes committed by Sri Lanka Army men. Shocking !! Ruthless Terror State run by War Criminal Mahinda Rajapaksa is colonizing the Tamil Homelands, putting chains on the Tamils and treating them like slaves. Tamils are imprisoned in open air prison by occupying Sinhala Only Army and Sinhala Only Police. The rapes of the defenseless war widows are done with total impunity and all the jobs in local area go to the Sinhalese from the South which lives the War Widows further vulnerable and destitute.


Senguttuvan February 25, 2012 1:02 am (Pacific time)

Starving 21 yrs Tamil woman and her baby -dead

Young Tamil mother,Sharmila Sathiyanathan and her 6 years old daughter Thilakshika has committed suicide by jumping in to a village water well killed her self in due starvation and many rapes committed by Sri Lanka Army men.

Every day 4 Tamil women commit suicide due to brutal rapes by Sri Lanka Army soldiers in North-East Sri Lanka.

Her husband was taken away into Sri Lanka Army custody in 2008. Sri Lanka Army promised her that her husband will return in few hours but he seems to vanished into thin air for nearly three years and never seen again. Her constant petitions to Rajapaksa Government central and local governments have been ignored .

Living alone with small 6 yrs old child, she was subjected to gruesome rapes and beatings by Sri Lanka Army soldiers. She was not able to complain to Sinhala only police as none of them speak Tamil. This poor Tamil woman had a horrific existence: living in constant fear , always hungry, sleeping on the bear ground in a flimsy tent . When Sri Lanka Army thugs raped her little baby in front of her, she forced to do this desperate act !!!

Tim King: These are the saddest stories on earth.


sinnan February 25, 2012 12:47 am (Pacific time)

Dear Tim,assingaleseask you about the horible history of ltte(for which you have apty answered whith a list),may i ask you (for the sake of context)whether you know the history of tamil struggle from1948 compleatly nonviolant which were always brought to hault by GOVERNMENTAL plus communal violances...

Tim King: Yes Sinnan I do and continue to learn more, I wrote about it recently: Sri Lanka's Independence Day- a Black Day for Tamil Eelam. Also I added a number of dates and incidents to the list accompanying this article, which take more into account, thank you.  


Ravi Vedanayagam February 24, 2012 11:58 pm (Pacific time)

Sri Lanka Navy dressed in civilian clothes in the "white vans" at sea cut off Tamil fisherman's nose.

Rajapaksa is spreading his thuggery and dictatorship to Tamil Nadu. Rajapaksa ruthless regime is well known for for the death squads in "white vans".

Now there are Sri Lanka Navy "white vans" at the sea. Sri Lanka Navy dressed in civilian clothes attacked Tamil Nadu fishermen.

According to Manoharan, panchayat president of Akkaraipettai, the fishermen ventured into the sea on February 18 in a boat owned by Rajendran from Nagapattinam port. When they were engaged in deep-sea fishing southeast of Kodiakarai, Sri Lankan Navy military men dressed in civilian clothes came in six fast crafts, surrounded them and hurled petrol bombs at their boat.

They then jumped onto the boat of the fishermen and attacked them with sickles. Three among the eight – Vaiyapuri, Sakthivel and Vadivel – sustained severe injuries. Vaiyapuri’s nose was cut-off. Other five sustained cut injuries. The attackers snatched the catch, GPS instrument and other valuables and fled the spot.

Other TN fishermen, who were in the vicinity, rescued the injured and brought them to shore on Wednesday morning

http://expressbuzz.com/states/tamilnadu/8-fishermen-injured-in-attack-by-Lankans/366091.html


Jeyam February 24, 2012 5:32 pm (Pacific time)

Tim,
Excellent reporting and we need more analytical journalist like you.

Tim King: Thank you Jeyam!


stephen February 24, 2012 12:11 pm (Pacific time)

meanwhile, back home, obama speech to to bring racial conflict, NDAA (killing anyone they want without a trial)..TSA feeling up your privates, and now on interstate freeways..Monsanto now owns obama, so does wall street..marines guarding opium fields in Afghanistan spreading cheap and potent herion thru out the world..invading Libya and arming al CIAda to do the dirtywork, flouride(poison) in our water, federalizing the police, GMO food sold at walmart without labels (more poison)...obama gave up obamacare not for Mc Donalds or GE...itsjust us common people. His wall street buddies are making a bundle while we die...they are the kings and we are nothing more than maggots in their eyes..people wake up to this eilte group that is causing havoc thru out the world for total world domination...wake..research Agenda 21 written by think tanks and the united nations...wake up!


Sinniah February 24, 2012 11:30 am (Pacific time)

He speaks the reality.It is not an easy task to defend these well known faults.Who knows how many such horrors that is why we need an impartial international inquary.


Mary van de boer February 24, 2012 10:35 am (Pacific time)

Ask Tim to get a dictionary and look up the word 'genocide'. It's callous and disrespectful to the millions who have perished in real genocides when the ignorant throw the word about. There was never a genocide in Sri Lanka. You wont find the UN or any reputable organisation making that claim - only little known publications and ill-informed journalist do. Oh, and Tim have you spoken to non-sinhalese Sri Lankans? Like the millions of Muslims and Burghers in Sri Lanka who fouight for the government in the war after the Tamil extremists tried to ethinically cleanse them in the 90s for a nazi-like Tamil-only homeland? Now, that's the closes thing to genocide in the island since the genocide perpetrated by Europeans (Dutch, Portugese and British colonist).

Tim King: I fully disagree, your tragedy or whichever one you refer to does not diminish the magnitude of this terrible years-long event.  You want to turn this ethnic cleansing into a game and it is not one.  It is not about competition, the only thing you are trying to do is spin propaganda.  I hate what the Tamils did to the Muslims, the first person to ever educate me about the political struggle on this island nation is Muslim and I know that struggle well,  However most Muslims were forced to flee and a terrible as that is, it does not even begin to compare to a government-orchestrated elimination of civilians who were killed in so many events, after making their way to so-called refugee safe zones.  There is far too much evidence proving my point, and I do not minimize the Muslim ethnic cleansing, it was wrong and highly regrettable.  


Harry Potter February 24, 2012 10:32 am (Pacific time)

well done mr Tim. like this female reporter, many tamil girls were gang raped,killed and disappeard forever. Those of western nations that trying to bring a resolution against sri lanka this week at UN for war crimes, were watching all this happend. beleiving sri lanka's stance that they were fighting terrorism,but in reallity what the sri lankan goverment and its mono ethnic military were doing is absolute ethnic cleansing. those of genocide servivors were locked up in camps,and many thousands vanished infront of their family members in there. this brutal racist sri lankan goverment and it's leader must be held accountable for what they did.


Latika Sivaraja February 24, 2012 10:04 am (Pacific time)

Thanks for your humanity, tireless help for enslaved people.

You are the angel who descended from heavens to wipe the my tears, to warm my broken heart

May God bless you , Mr. Tim King

Tim King: I think that is the kindest comment I ever read, thank you Latika.


Anonymous February 24, 2012 9:33 am (Pacific time)

Thank you for this concise breakdown of events. This is such a confusing subject that without those details it is hard to put into proper perspective. It is a terrible thing, the way humans rationalize their evil doings. But this isn't just about taking sides, justice doesn't know lines in the sand. "Nobody's right when everybody's wrong" isn't that the way the song goes?


Ramesh February 24, 2012 6:41 am (Pacific time)

Thanks for the article Tim. There is a typo in the first sentence. 

EDITOR: Thank you Ramesh, it has been corrected.  


Bharathi February 24, 2012 6:19 am (Pacific time)

Why there are no sequences of events on GOSL side? How about reporting GOSL aerial bombardments of churches after asking Tamil civilians to take refuge there, relentless aerial bombardments and artillery attacks on Tamil civilians, assassinations of journalists and political leaders of Tamils. This article is not impartial but one sided.

Bharathi: I always write about the Genocide, I am continually accused of not considering the other side of this issue, that is why I included this string of events, however you are right, and might add what you refer to, however I may run out of room trying to list them all...

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