Kumar David and the Channel-4 TV feature.

| by Mano Vithana, Maryland, USA. 
Letter to the Editor

( December 27, Colombo, Sri Lanka Guardian) I write a propos the article by Kumar David entitled "Not genocide but probably war crimes: The Asia Society Debate on the last months of the war" that appeared in the 18th Dec. Sunday Issue of the Island.

As David's article is too full of errors of judgment, I will confine myself to just one issue -- the comments he makes about the "Channel four claim". Here Kumar David says " Macrae (director of Killing Fields, )confirmed that the video had been thoroughly analysed technically and examined by forensic pathologists; it had been played before parliaments and heads of governments who in turn would have had officials report on authenticity. It had been assessed independently by the UN and confirmed as authentic. The question of authenticity he claimed is now firmly settled and Seneviratne refrained from repeating GOSL’s asinine assertion that it was all pure fake".

So, Kumar David suspends judgment and swallows hook, line and sinker what Mccrae says, and floats a few false balloons as well.

Kumar David must have heard that the crucial parts of the movie, including the assassination, had been shown one year earlier in a Boston broadcast; with the assassin (the soldier) speaking Tamil. The so-called Sinhala in the channel-4 movie which appeared one year later is incomprehensible. I have listened to it and it is just garbled sounds.

Kumar David is said to be an electrical engineer by training and he could have run the movie with the audio and video channels hooked to an oscilloscope and trivially verified that there are problems of synchronization at the crucial points, e.g., before the assassination scene, and these have been well documented by its critics. The claim that the material is a fake is well founded.

As many observers have pointed out, the assassin is wearing rubber slippers, as is usual for Tamil-Tiger soldiers, where are Sri Lankan Army soldiers always wear Government-issue boots.

Kumar David's claim that "it had been played before parliaments and heads of governments who in turn would have had officials report on authenticity" is unbelievably uninformed. The movie has been played in front of groups of parliamentarians who were already well known to be sympathetic to the LTTE front organizations in the respective countries. I know for certain that the Canadian parliamentary group, or the Aussie or British parliamentary groups did not have "official reports on authenticity", as falsely implied by David. The MPs were more interested in showing the Tamil diaspora voters that "they listen to their demands to pressurize GOSL".

It is clear that Kumar David's writing is based on his ideology. He had all along supported the LTTE as freedom fighters. When the LTTE was strong he wrote in the TamilNet to crow about the engineering audacity and invincibility of the LTTE. During the last months' of the war David (and the not-so-innocent Bopage ) wrote shrill articles accusing the government of war crimes. Kumar david, Loinel Bopage and others demanded an immediate halt of the war. David claimed that the LTTE must continue to exist to safeguard the push for Tamil self-determination. After the war David used to claim that the IDPs were being maltreated and held as prisoners by the government, and demanded immediate release. David had previously criticized Gen Sarath Fonseka, but rose to his defence when Fonseka and TNA got together. Kumar David predicted that the nation will rise against Rajapaksa and that Fonseka would carry the day. He predicted that the JVP will, in the aftermath of the war create a leftist Tsunami in the country!

All his political predictions, going back to several decades have been "asinine" and incorrect. David fails to look at facts empirically, and selects a subset that fits his pseudo-Marxist bias. Is it surprising that he has swallowed Macrea's bait hook, line and sinker? Indeed, his other pseudo-Marxist collegues like Vickremabahu Karunaratne, Lionel Bopage and others continue to hobnob with Fathre Emmanuel of the LTTE who is considered a persona non grata even by Tamil Nadu.

Is it surprising that politicians of Kumar david's breed are a dwindling species?