By Tisaranee Gunasekara
The Tigers have been eying Mutur for a long time, because they regarded it as a gateway to Trinco, the designated capital city of Vellupillai Pirapaharanâ€™s future Tiger Eelam. For instance, as the UTHR warned on a number of occasions, the LTTE has been making repeated attempts to get the Muslim residents of the town to vacate, so that a depopulated Mutur can be used to facilitate an assault on Trinco. Unfortunately these warnings seemed to have gone unheeded and the government was definitely caught napping in Mutur, a state of un-preparedness which enabled the Tigers to enter the town and occupy parts of it, battle it out with the Lankan Forces for several days. According to media reports, Mutur was â€˜thinly defendedâ€™, despite its obvious strategic import and its obvious vulnerability. Why? Was it a part of the general malaise â€“ after all even the Army Headquarters was thinly defended, as the suicide attack on Gen. Sarath Fonseka demonstrated, as was Gen. Parami Kulathunga? Or was it because Mutur is a predominantly Muslim town and therefore of little consequence to the Sinhala supremacists political leaders?