Monday, May 18, 2009

Sri Lankan Civil War Ends

On his 90th birthday, Arthur C. Clarke, author of 2001: A Space Oddysey, recorded a message in which he expressed his desire for "a lasting peace" in Sri Lanka. Clarke lived in Sri Lanka for more than half a century and continued to live in Colombo, its capital city, despite the ongoing civil war. Clarke would die three months later in March 2008.

Well, it appears that Clarke has finally got his wish. The 26-year civil war in Sri Lanka is over.

The Sri Lankans had signed ceasefire with the Tamil Tigers in 2001 but the Tamil Tigers repeatedly violated the agreement. For the past year and a half, the Sri Lankan Army decided to make its way into the Tamil stronghold in the northern part of the country to end matters once and for all and finally did so this weekend.

The Tamil Tigers released a statement indicating the battle had reached "a bitter end" and they had "decided to silence our guns." Today, it was confirmed that the Tamil Tigers founder and leader Vellupillai Prabhakaran was killed by the Sri Lankan Army along with a number of his advisers.

The developments in Sri Lanka frankly make President Obama look pretty silly given his statements from last week. First, that he put a terrorist organization on the same moral plane with a democratically elected Sri Lankan government was just plain absurd. Second, the Sri Lankan victory proves terrorism can be defeated militarily, something he has argued against. Unless Obama is adding troops in Afghanistan to bring about victory over the Taliban and al Qaeda then he is sending them on a hopeless mission but I suspect he is doing precisely that.

This isn't to say there aren't legitimate problems that require international humanitarian aid. Tens of thousands of innocent civilians have been displaced and need to be resettled. But you can do that without legitimizing terrorist organizations as Obama (and for that matter the United Nations) would have done.

Unfortunately, it is also precisely what Obama is doing to Israel vis a vis Iran and the Palestinians.

But at least the Sri Lankans got it done before Obama and UN could impose their heavy hand.

No comments: