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Asian Tribune is published by E-LANKA MEDIA(PVT)Ltd. Vol. 20 No. 80

Ranil -- "neither a man of the majority nor the minorit

[b]Ranil -- "neither a man of the majority nor the minority" -- is heading for.....?[/b]

H. L. D. Mahindapala

Without running into violent and stormy seas so far, the presidential yacht race has been sailing along smoothly on predictable lines with the usual quota of cross-overs, propaganda gimmicks, promises, mud-slinging, media hypes for one side or the other, astrological predictions, opinion polls and the whole caboodle that normally go with elections until last week when two unexpected events veered the yachts away from the chartered course.

First, the UNP stalwarts took the unprecedented step of claiming credit for (1) splitting the LTTE (2) sinking their ships and (3) trapping the LTTE in an “international safety net”.

Second, the LTTE and its proxy MPs in the TNA announced their decision not to back either candidate which political observers believe would be damaging to the UNP as they were banking on the Tamils votes of the north and east to tip the scales in their favour.

There is a point of view which claims that both events are parts of a single plot taken jointly by both parties to deceive the voters. Was the decision to distance the UNP by the LTTE taken to dispel the fears of the Sinhala-south that a vote for Ranil Wickremasinghe is a vote for Tigers?

And is Wickremasinghe attacking the LTTE to lull the Sinhala voters into believing that he has been the real enemy of LTTE and not the SLFP?

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