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Asian Tribune is published by World Institute For Asian Studies|Powered by WIAS Vol. 12 No. 2762

Memoirs of a Counter-Rebel Spy in London - PART VIII : Let's call those 'Good Ole' British Chaps' back to Ceylon!

By Glen Jenvey - Exclusive to "Asian Tribune"
Edited By - Joseph Thavaraja

With all the links to anti-Israeli, anti-Indian and American groups in just one London demonstration, I felt that the rebels ought to have had links with others in the past…But I believed that it's only understandable, considering the harsh realities they faced….

The al-Qaeda and the rebels were in some sort of 'business', but I did not know the exact nature of it.. (In my view, al-Qaeda does not represent Muslims in their entirety).

Back in 1990, when LTTE established arms procurement bases in Philippines, it came to contact with the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) and Abu Sayyaf Group that were fighting the Government of Philippines. However, the LTTE were secular, unlike these groups and especially al-Qaeda…They focused on the aim of 'attaining a homeland'---and never carried an agenda against any western country; in its outlook, it was a Sri Lankan only rebel outfit, unlike transnational al-Qaeda…Also the rebel group carried out more 'minor operations' than al-Qaeda which stuck to a few but major trans-border attacks—with a bent on the holy Jihad against the "west'… Perhaps these reasons led to a discontinuation of ties between the two;

Some Sri Lankan diplomats in London appeared to understand these differences well…In fact, I felt that many of the Sri Lankan diplomats were trained well, not to get personal, and stick to the important non personal facts -unlike the British Labor Councilors.

Most Sri Lankans I met –be it Sinhalese, Tamils, Muslims of yesteryear or the Burghers – still love the British and, in some cases, went on to state that they wished that the British had never left Sri Lankan shores...

One can still see many signs in the country that show that the British colonial mentality is still intact..(despite being eroded by a so called "Sri Lankan-ness"….) - Their 'legendary love' for Cricket…In fact, the war between Tamil Guerillas and the SL Army falls into an 'unofficial truce' on the days of key world cup matches …Their love for gambling; In Colombo, no more are the small bookies but "Turf Accountants" in semi-plush buildings equipped with satellite TV showing the latest British races such as the Greyhounds race in Sunderland, have overtaken the "bookie"..

Then that slitting, counting, and chopping old railway ticket vending machine in railway stations…(In London, they would be promptly thrown into a museum)…These machines carry the unmistakable mark of the British colonial design in them…

I remember how the walls of the Senior Officers' Mess in Bullers Road were decorated with photos of top British officers dating back to pre 1948 times….

On the other hand, the British themselves can take a leaf out of the Book of Sri Lankans in arms and weapons control….Especially as to how they 'go about' it…

Once a British firm sued the government of Sri Lanka in 2000 for non-payment for the bullet proof vests it supplied ("Breach of Contract")…But Sri Lanka had already concluded that the vests they received were not up-to the expected standards, and withheld payments for 3000 vests. Due to their successful efforts, a Sri Lankan called Dr. Jayantha Dhanapala was to be put in charge of the Arms Decommissioning Program Undersecretary-General for Disarmament Affairs at the United Nations..

Nevertheless, there are many who still rightly or wrongly blame the British for their divide-and-rule policy they implemented in Ceylon, which they believe sowed the seeds for today's war…

But that's another story..

(To be continued)

- Asian Tribune –

Part I: Memoirs of an anti-LTTE undercover agent in London

Part II: Delicious Curry served with a Stark Warning!

Part III: "Is there a D-Notice on us?"

Part IV: Oh what a Friday it was….

Part V: The South African Roulette and 'Shots of Arrack'

Part VI: al-Qaeda flies high in London

Part VII: The British Arms Deals

Next: On the Trail of Radical Islamic Groups

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