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Published On:Saturday, November 1, 2008
Posted by Sri Lanka Guardian

Black Sea Tigers failing yet again!




“LTTE is indeed desperate to score some spectacular success in the maritime domain while it is facing defeat on many land fronts. Even the aerial attacks have had very limited success.”

by Commodore RS Vasan IN(Retd)


(November 01, Chennai, Sri Lanka Guardian) Apropos report on the failed suicide attack by four suicide boats of the Sea Tiger wing of the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) this morning (Nov. 01) the failed attacks appear to have fallen in to a pattern that would not be to the liking of the Black Tigers In the attack this morning the SLN claimed that their Special Boat Squadron and the Rapid Action Boat Squadron have neuatralised the attack and have killed about 17 sea tigers while five of their own were injured in the engagement. Their desperate and repeated attacks have been foiled almost routinely by the Sri Lankan Navy with marginal success by the suicide squad of the LTTE occasionally .It is obvious that the Sea tigers are losing their edge .

There can be no doubts that there would be more such attacks on targets of opportunity more so in the areas of interest even if it means losing the trained cadres. The case of the failed attack on MV Nimalawa which carried military and other supplies, in Kankeasnthu'rai port in Jaffna can only be termed as a partial success. The LTTE claimed that the supply ship was sunk and another vessel, MV Ruhunuwa, sustained heavy damage. However Sri Lankan sources have indicated that the outer hull of Nimalwana was damaged and the inner hull was cracked but the ship's crew were able to prevent flooding and sinking of the ship. The ship is repairable at an approximate cost of Rs 1 million according to some sources.

As per reports from the Tamilnet, the tiger mission was led by Black Sea Tiger Lt. Col. Ilakkiyaa, a lady deputy commander of the Sea Tigers, who sacrificed her life along with Black Sea Tiger Commando Lt. Col. Kuperan. For the planners in the LTTE HQ it would be an agonising process of great concern to keep losing trained cadres at regular intervals with failed or partially successful missions.

LTTE is indeed desperate to score some spectacular success in the maritime domain while it is facing defeat on many land fronts. Even the aerial attacks have had very limited success .The SLN has been able to thwart such attacks in the seas by ensuring that there is proper surveillance and its own commandos are deployed in areas where such attacks are likely to take place.

(The Writer is presently the Head Strategy and Security studies at the Center of Asia studies, Chennai and can be contacted at rsvasan2010@gmail.com The views expressed by the author or his own and do not necessarily represent the views of the Center.)
- Sri Lanka Guardian

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