Monday, October 13, 2008

Eradicating terrorism - Daily News Editorial

President Mahinda Rajapaksa addressing the All Party Conference (APC) on Saturday has repeated his call to the terrorists to put down down arms and surrender.
President Rajapaksa has also lined out any talks with the terrorist outfit unless and awaiting they lay down arms without conditions.
It appears that abandoning weapons and yielding to the Security Forces is the only way not present for the Tigers, whose main strongholds are definitely about to fall soon. This time, they have nowhere to run as the Forces are controlling still the jungles which they previous withdrew to.
The Tigers have a unblemished example to follow: Vinayagamoorthi Muralitharan, better known as Karuna Amman. The Eastern Commander of the Tigers until they bankrupt away in 2004, Muralitharan is now determinedly entrenched in the self-governing normal along with his deputy Sivanesathurai Chandrakanthan, the Chief Minister of the East.
They had realised the futility of war and embraced democracy. Prabhakaran too must take a long, hard look at what he has achieved so far in his aggressive struggle for a divide state. More than 21,000 Tamil youth have died for his 'cause' and more will, if he does not abandon it now.
The North and the East stay the poorest regions of the country with rampant poverty. He has blackened the future of thousands of children by by force recruiting them for the infamous infant brigades. Development has been stalled. Abject misery is the cumulative result of his quest for Eelam. Prabhakaran can even get inspiration from the wider world as there have been many instances of insurgents embracing democratic system in other countries.
But as long as Prabhakaran and the LTTE engage in their violent terrorist campaign, targeting not only Armed Forces personnel but also blameless civilians, the State will have no alternative other than fighting to get rid of terrorism in all its manifestations.
Yet, one should not misinterpret this as an attempt to find a military answer. In the President's words, the efforts to find following solutions to political issues should be continued. He has rightly stressed that there are no military solutions to political questions. But military operations have become necessary to eliminate terrorism and enthrone democracy.
A timely proposal
According to a story appearing on our front page, the Government is bearing in mind the option of amalgamating the Sri Lanka Foreign Service (SLFS) and the Sri Lanka Administrative Service (SLAS).
As President Mahinda Rajapaksa has said at the meeting where it was discussed, this is certainly a timely proposal that would help use the combined strengths of both services for enhancing the country's picture abroad.
It is no secret that the SLAS has many personnel who would fit into political positions if known the opportunity. The vast knowledge and experience of SLAS veterans must be made use of in that sphere.
Similarly, the services of in-service and retired career diplomats can be used for developing the local administrative arrangement, not only through holding posts per se but also through training young SLAS officers on the latest trends in administration which they have witnessed abroad.
Foreign contact will be another plus point for the local administrative staffers who would otherwise be required to serve almost entirely in Sri Lanka. SLAS officers, who are already required to master Sinhala, Tamil and English should be told to gain ease in at least one other foreign verbal communication with this aim in mind.
It must be mentioned here that some of our best envoys have not been from the SLFS or even the SLAS. There have been many well-known personalities exterior these services who have served Mother Lanka with distinction.
Such non-career diplomats have made a name for themselves in the countries they served.
One of the most pressing supplies at the moments is fighting the Tiger propaganda machine and those able to handle this task must be recruited to the Foreign Service. There is a insight, which is not entirely without base, that some of our missions are not doing sufficient to counter LTTE propaganda.
A combination of talents and strategies of the Foreign and Administrative Services could be an answer to this issue.
We hope the Government will give grave consideration to these points and move quickly in the way of combining the two vital services.
Courtesy - Daily News

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