Sunday, November 16, 2008

Brigadier Shavendra Silva
Commander 58 Division

This can be highlighted as the highest achievement by the military in its effort to liberate the Wanni and the North from the clutches of the LTTE as this is first time in military history of the country in which troops were able to reach Pooneryn after commencing operations from the South.

Also this can be the highest achievement by the military as the LTTE has lost one of its most important strongholds. Now they are left with only Kilinochchi and Mullaitivu.

We were able to clear the entire Western coast from the clutches of the LTTE enabling the civilians to use the entire Western coast for commercial and military purposes. By denying the western coast to the LTTE we were able to cut off the LTTE’s link with the Indian coast from the Western coast.

It is a relief for the military as this enables us to open a land route to Jaffna for military purposes for the first time in 20 years.
Not only for military, the civilians population will also be able breath a sigh of relief now as no artillery rounds will fall into Jaffna hereafter with the capture of Pooneryn since this was used by the LTTE as a launching pad to harass the civilians in the Jaffna peninsula. So this will be a message of peace for the civilians living in Jaffna.

This is a proud moment for the troops of the 58 Division as they achieved this task sacrificing their lives and limbs for the sake of liberating this fertile land in the North Western coast from the clutches of the LTTE.

Army Commander
Lt. General Sarath Fonseka

Capturing Pooneryn is one of the important milestones in our efforts to liberate the entire North from the clutches of the LTTE. It marks the opening of a land route to Jaffna through A-32 road after 20 years. A lot terrorists perished in this battle. We are poised to achieve victories on the other fronts as well.

Felicitations our brave heroes of the Government Forces.

We cannot thank you enough our brave heroes of the Government Forces, for the task you have undertaken to free our motherland, of the uncouth terrorist virmins. You have taken risks, gone through physical and mental sufferings we can little imagine. Some of your companions have made their ultimate sacrifice. You have taken risks to save the motherland putting your lives in danger. You have done all this for us without distinction of our race, colour , or religion, so that we , our children, and generations thereafter may have this motherland of theirs’, an undivided Unitary State where the Sinhala, Tamils, Muslims, Burghers and Malays may live as a Nation of Sri Lankans.

You have done this not to receive applause, but as true heroes of our Nation, to free our country from the terrorists, who were ruthless murderers, who assassinated many a great sons of our land.

Please forgive those who unwittingly minimised your heroism, fail to recognise the risk you were taking to save this motherland of “ours and theirs”. While you fought your valiant battles without knowing whether your next step would be on a personal mine , or wading in waist deep marshy waters carrying your guns and back packs not knowing whether you would be the target of an enemy bullet, when you had cramps of hunger while crawling on the ground to be safe from the enemy, we shamelessly waited in comfort to get news of your victories, or defeats. We prayed for you when we heard of your victories, we were saddened by your defeats, but we wept for those who died by your side.

Those who were hard hearted, who could not understand your suffering, the price you are paying to save the motherland, were critical of your violation of human rights, when you violated none, critical you claim the motherland as belonging to you, when you claimed no ownership. You are not politicians but real heroic sons of Sri Lanka.

A journalists who believes he is the cream of defence reporters said the capture of Poonaryn is not significant, as there are many pockets of active terrorists elsewhere. This sad reporter believes a military victory is annexing a whole territory all at once. He does not know that wars are won by taking villages, towns, and provinces one after the other. For us, every step you take into terrorist held areas, every square meter you have taken from the terrorists, is a victory, for which we honour you, and pray for your safety.

The Sri Lanka Tamil diaspora will not hail your victories, for they live in clover in foreign lands, dreaming a Tamil Kingdom for themselves in the north east, for which they are paying the terrorists to continue to fight a loosing war.

Pardon them, our valiant heroes, for they are angry men who think of only of themselves, and what they can get out of your sufferings, after your brave heroic deeds are done.

But, those others know that you go through all that suffering and take all those risks ,to save this motherland for all those who share it, to live in peace and unity.