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Army heading for LTTE’s HSZs

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Army heading for LTTE’s HSZs
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Sri Lanka Army (SLA) troops are now moving towards the LTTE’s High Security Zone (HSZ). Progress is slow because the path ahead is lined with mines and booby traps. Troops have to traverse through jungle and open area as well through some villages too.

A reliable source reported that, the LTTE had ordered the villagers to vacate their houses and confine themselves to LTTE controlled areas and used older civilians as human shields.

The LTTE has positioned snipers to attack troops, according to a battlefront officer who said that this LTTE strategy is well known to the SLA.

The Army’s main aim is to overrun the LTTE heartland, so that, the innocent civilians could be freed from the grip of the Tigers and then destroy their weapons, armaments, equipment, ordnance and infrastructure.

To eradicate terrorism in any country, the main counter terrorism method is to destroy terrorist infrastructure and raw materials used for manufacturing explosives as well as to build up a solid intelligence network.

SLA success within a year
While the war in the Eastern Province was going on, the SLA Chief conducted limited operations on the Northern front with Special Infantry Oriented Trained (SIOT) troops who infiltrated enemy territory and eliminated the enemy under the maxim of ‘maximum deaths for the enemy and minimum deaths for the troops.’

He set up additional Offensive Divisions 57 and 59, Task Force 1 or 58 Division, 56 Division and Task Force 2 to confront the LTTE on many fronts. In future, more Divisions’ will be created to counter the enemy and increase the strength of the Elite Commandos and Special Forces.

The targets were Kilinochchi and Mulativu.
Battle-hardened General Officer Commanders (GOCs) and Brigade Commanders worked according to a perfect military plan while Wanni Security Forces Commander Maj. Gen. Jagath Jayasuriya supervised offensives on the instructions of the Army Commander.

Remarkable support from the Artillery and Armoured Corps with their fire power destroyed LTTE military installations and killed its cadres. The Sri Lanka Air Force (SLAF) too, accurately bombed and destroyed LTTE military installations.

Operation Jaya Sikuru The objective of Operation Jayasikuru was to open the A9 Road. Operation Jayasikuru was the longest operation in Sri Lanka, taking nearly two years, beginning on May 13, 1997 and ending on November 5, 1999. Yet, the troops were able to reach only Oddusuddan and a little further north, after capturing Omanthai, Kanakarayankulam, Olumadu and Mankulam.

The operation kicked off from Vavuniya with only one front. The lack of a military plan and unheeding intelligence warnings by the then field commanders, led to troops marching on to Oddusuddan.

In that time, LTTE leader Prabhakaran summoned eastern leader Karuna and carried out two successful counteroffensives from the rear at Oddusuddan junction, with the result that, the entire operation ended in a debacle. Then President Chandrika Kumaratunga ordered the Army Commander to set up a court martial and punish the senior officers responsible.


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