The Sunday Leader

“The Rajapaksas Have Found Their Own Hangman!” – Gen. Sarath Fonseka

  • Fonseka responds to Gotabaya Rajapaksa’s BBC interview

By Mandana Ismail Abeywickrema

Responding to  statements made against him by Defence Secretary Gotabaya Rajapaksa to the BBC’s HardTalk programme on Sri Lanka last week, former Army Commander and DNA Parliamentarian Retired General Sarath Fonseka  said, “the Rajapaksa regime has found its own hangman from within the family.”

Speaking by telephone to The Sunday Leader, Fonseka referring to Defence Secretary Gotabaya Rajapaksa’s statement to the BBC’s HardTalk programme that he would “hang him” if he gave evidence at any international war crimes probe, told The Sunday Leader the statement made by the Defence Secretary had brought public disgrace upon Sri Lanka and its people at an international level.

“I condemn this statement. This person doesn’t conduct himself as a secretary of any ministry. He is an irresponsible person. No Defence Secretary in the world has ever made such comments. The comments indicate sentiments of Idi Amin. He is not the Chief Justice or the Attorney General to pass judgment and convict people,” Fonseka said.

According to General Fonseka, “the Defence Secretary is angry and living in hatred.” Asked what action he would take against the remarks made about him, General Fonseka responded, “I have already taken the issue up in parliament and have expressed my sentiments. Beyond that I will not waste time on foolish and frivolous talk like this.”

Reaffirming his stance on being prepared to respond to any queries on any possible inquiry carried out during the final stages of the war, Fonseka asserted he was not worried about threats made by senior public officials affiliated to the First Family.

He reiterated that he was prepared to go before any international war crimes probe to answer any queries on the final stages of the war, as he was the commanding officer for all operations carried out at the time.
Gotabaya Rajapaksa, in his interview with the BBC’s Stephen Sackur, responded angrily to the prospect of Fonseka giving evidence at any international war crimes probe.

“He can’t do that. He was the commander,” Rajapaksa  said. “That’s  treason (sic). We will hang him if he does that. I’m telling you. How can he betray the country? He is a liar.”

81 Comments for ““The Rajapaksas Have Found Their Own Hangman!” – Gen. Sarath Fonseka”

  1. There is a saying tn Tamil “the Frog die by its own mouth” After all is said and done there is the curse of the dead innocent people and the living people who are suffering because of the senseless manner the war was conducted and all responsible will have to answer the Divine whether UN inquire or not. Nothing is permanent in this world. All good things as well as bad will come to an end.

    • Ari

      Its hard to believe that Tamils could kill their own for a maniac like Prabakaran. This maniac was worse than Hitler, Stalin, Polpot and even Satan taken together!

      • It appears you don’t know what Hitler. Stalin or Polpot did.Praba. is the worst terrorist, Let it may as it may. But you may not be aware of the unpublished enthnic clencing that is taking place since independence now it is worst. What consider the communal riots of 1956, 58 65, 77 and 83. Praba. is a by product of these violence. How about the some ministers Douglas, Karuna?

        • HUD

          Sir, you don’t know what is meant by “ethnic cleansing”, not to mention that you misspelled it too.

          Could you please let me know and area or place in Sri Lanka where Tamil population has gone down compared to other races? However, it is LTTE who launched so called “ethnic cleansing” by chasing all Muslims and Sinhalese from Jaffna peninsula and some areas of Eastern province to make a “Tamil” land. That’s called ethnic cleansing.

        • san

          Edward, could you tell us in colombo all most all big business jewellraies are run by Tamils. They live in luxury houses in colombo. Ethnic clinsing is happening and happend in Norhs and east by LTTE. The LTTE chased all the muslims from Jafna. LTTE chased all the sinhalse from many places. They killed innocent muslims in a Mosque in Kathankudi, they killed wemen and children from near sinhala villages. . So who did ethnic cleansing?

    • LankaLiar

      There are many maniacs who killed thousand of Tamil for many years. Not only the killed they celebrated the killings. The worst sadistic killers of the world. What sort of the people are they.

    • Sid

      Good and valued sentiments

  2. Godfather

    Always remember the great saying: Every dog has its day

  3. Ralph Herft


    • LankaLiar

      Liers are those who tell lies. There is no one who can beat the Sri Lankan in this. Permanent gold medal given to us long long ago. You know the Sun Stroke lie – Presiden J.R.Jayawardene. The latest one is one by Pa Lie De Ko Ko Nut UN ambassodor
      “The Sri Lankan soldier were commended for their operations in Haiti” you know what they did more than 100 of them raped under aged girls in refugee camps which they were to protect. Can you find a better one. To Lie we are the best . We are simply unbeatable

      • R Veda

        Exactly. People who have been following Sri Lankan history since Independence knows this very well. They have no desire to mend their record and be good people, but only how to lie tactfully to cover up the crimes and atrocities they commit. They are the worst specimens the world has ever seen.

  4. Greg Sathyadasa

    The Retd General Fonseka is not a virgin as well. The statements he made regarding the tamil community and India were, I believe, a true reflection of the pan-sinhala racist mindset that prevails in Sri Lanka. Gen Fonseka adivised the Tamils ” to take what is given by the masters” and referred to Indians as “jokers”. Gen Fonseka has no moral authority to pick on statements made by Mr Gothabhaya Rajapakse; after all they were brothers in arms in the genocidal war aginst the Tamils.

    • momo

      Greg. You are 100% Correct

    • Fred Gamaya

      Your “genocide” is not ours, you did that to your own by being terrorists. Gota and SF put an end to it.

    • Sid

      I agree wholeheartedly


      TAmils Cant talk much about Genocide……They did that to their own people as well for all the muslims in the noth and the east….Dont forget that LTTE gave only 24 hours to vacate their houses for the Muslims in the east and then they started shooting and killing the innocen muslims….

      Therefore…Tamils and the LTTE supporters have no right talk about genocide/ Ethnic Clensing

      • vathy

        If LTTE made human rights violations it does not mean that Tamils cannot talk about genocide or even ask UN to declare Tamil separate state applying Kosovo principle.

        • CHARLES

          Varthy u may be correct. But where were you and the Tamil community who is shouting now when LTTE was doing this act couple of years back. You mean to say that you will only raise your voice for your own people’s advantage is it?? Dont you think that’s bit selfish???

  5. BathGotta

    At last !! a well qualified candidate for the ‘hang mans’ post.

    • Lord

      I beg your pardon! How could you say qualified? He is not qualified instead an experienced person for the job is more appropriate.

  6. But does SF know that he is kept in confinement to be later blamed for all the human rights violations during the war. Mahinda Rajapaksa is crooked but streetwise guy he will get SF implicated so that he can escape. If I am SF I will be worried.

  7. B.Hettiarachchi

    Gen.Fonseka is absolutely correct. Which other secretary of Ministry can make such stupid statements.

  8. gunda

    A superb and most appropriate headline after what Gota said in that widely publicised BCC Hardtalk program. It is very clear to the whole world that he has a lot to hide and is fearing a life sentence/hanging by the international court.

  9. kumudini

    What Sf should realise is that there is a code of conduct for the army officers or any one in profession . To violate this code of conduct is a criminal office . What the def sec said on interview is that if he is convicted of these offence the Military law is to hang people for treason . Court Martials have happend all over the world , This is Military Law. It is not hatred but the rules of the Military which SF should be aware of if he was the army commander .Also if the army commnder was abobe the law how can the other lower ranks be diciplined for irregularities ??

    • kumudini
      Pl note court Martial is for active soldiers but not for ex military officials


      • sam the man

        According to you, he was retired during the war!!!! and not the Army Commander…Funny isnt it

    • Siri Herath

      Human rights violations, if there’s evidence they took place, are violations of international laws and surely must supercede all state laws and and codes of coduct of an army. How can anyone hang him if he were to co-operate with the International Courts of Justice ?And why is it that none of these suppositions of Gen. Fonseka’s absolutely “inhuman” conduct did not surface between the time he resigned from the Army and stood against Rajapakshe at the Presidential Election?

    • ric

      Are you only aware that a military code of conduct exists? if you talk about law, i would advice you to atleast try to know the laws associated with conducting a war.Its waste explaining to you guys. carry on the way you want to… we will be back

  10. Siri Herath

    General Fonseka surely must be aware that no one, and I mean no one, dares to speak about the government, in doors, in the office, workplace, at the sunday open market, grocery store or whereever. Any little talk one may hear are those that are ‘embarrasingly’ complimentary to the President and his govt. General Fonseka should tread carefully as the force-that-be in SL can be likened to the Spanish Conquistadors in the 6th century, who saw nothing wrong in frightening, brutalising and maiming all who stood in their way of pillaging and converting.

  11. Parakrama

    It is not a matter to get frighten. I do not think an educated Permanent Secretary of a Ministry would have spoken to a foreign media personality, because educated people would no how difficult to become a Permanent Secretary of a ministry, either you have to be a graduate or to possess class 1 in administrative Service.
    Not GCE O/L Qualification just because brother becomes Head Of State.

    • sam the man

      Huh go and tell that to Bill Gates or Dell, I can show you very incompetent educated fools in SriLanka like the JVP…

    • Don

      What are the qualifications of Sarath Fonseka? Did HE PASS HIS A/L ?? Before trying to ridicule others get your own facts right. In any country an army officer or any officer who is involved in national security will be assasinated if found guilty of treason. The difference is they will not be telling any body but the man who talks too much will either suddenly dissapear or will have an accident or a massive heart attack. Well you have heard of the CIA/FBI/KGB/M15 or havent you?? The difference is Gota is straight forward. If SF continues to betray this country he will have to face judgment on that.

  12. lakshani

    General, why not you ask a question in Parliament under your privileges as MP,from Minister of Public Administration as to what qualifications a person needs to become a Permanent Secretary of a Ministry. Secondly you can ask if the brother becomes Head of State can he appoint his brother to this position who possess only GCE O/L qualification.
    Then the cat will jump out of the bag.

  13. lakshani

    General as an MP you have the privilege to ask questions in Parliament.
    Firstly ask from the minister of Public Administration what qualifications ministry requires when appointing Permanent Secretary s. Secondly you can ask can any body with GCE O/L qualifications be appointed to this position under any circumstances. Then we can come to a conclusion as to why permanent secretarys in this caliber talk in this manner.

    • Sid

      Whatever happened to SLAS officers. Have you got no one capable?

    • Silva

      Gotabhaya has done what he was expected of by defeating the tamil terrorism in Sri Lanka, living up to the the expectations of the vast majority of Sri Lankans. Before poking around Gotabhaya’s qualifications think what he has done to our country.

      Apart from his degree equivalent qualifications while in the armed service, I know he earned a Postgraduate Diploma in Computer Technology from University of Colombo School of Computing.

  14. Shan

    SF said “he was prepared to go before any international war crimes probe to answer any queries on the final stages of the war, as he was the commanding officer for all operations carried out at the time…” so whats the problem? He never says hat he is going to give evidence against the government or country?

    • Ananda

      Why you want to go before unwarrented so called “international war crime probe”. It is just to please imperialist.

    • Don

      Are you not in this world stupid!! If he never said that why was the BBC reporter every second reminded that SF in his VERY LATEST INTERIEW as well said that Gota ordered the white flaggers to be killed!He is definitely trying to take revenge and for his selfish ego centric greed he is putting our country and it’s national security at stake. The stupid man should at least stop putting his foot in his mouth now and behave like a parlimentarian who wants to see this country thrive , not go down a pot hole regarding imaginary war crimes charges to satisfy his ego! Maniac!!!!!

      • CHARLES

        why are we argueing on a loss subject. For the sake of your country Sri Lanka, both of them GR and SF should have bow down from the positions after their job is done and given some one else to do the balance work. Both of them accomplished what Sri Lankan people expected from them and you should praise them for what they achived.

        Different people have different attitudes and if you all want everyone to live under one Sri Lanka, the top brass should show it and start making the change. Then the rest of the country will follow.

        Here most of your people who are in power do not want to give it up.for the betterment of the country. This is waht is sad. If everyone is united, no other outside force will be able do anything.

  15. Ananda

    Karuna has forgiven for his involvements, same like for those who involve in 71 JVP struggle

    • silva

      who said karuna is not killing innocent children and family currently

      • BASH

        Karuna and Douglas are good citizens now, according the the records. There is no proof that they are continuing with terrorism

        • san

          This is the bad thing we see in Srilanaka. Any one like Karuna could kill many thousnasds in his past. Then he joins government and become a good persons. Then we all forget what he did and those who were killed by him. Who has the authority to forgive him, is it the government?. What about the justice for the relatives who were killed by Karuna?. Nope wether he is Karunma, or SF or Basil or Ranil who ever it is he should be interogated and bring under justice and punished if he done some crime.

        • Hard knox

          Discussion is about the former General’s activities and it is not about Karuna and others. Why don’t you stay with the subject and not bring irrelevant arguments to spoil the debate about the General and the comments made by Gotabhaya.

  16. It seems diplomacy, decorum, protocol and most of all deft state-craftmanship, are increasingly getting out of our reach especially when confronted by international media and the like of steven Thakur (of BBC) . GR is not the first and will not be the last to make “gaffes” or irresponsible statements, little realising the damage being done. This govt’s dependence on “rhetoric” instead of carefully thought out sensible answers (when important pronouncements or responses are needed) is evident. It is also a sign of desperation. After all the govt’s role models are – Ahmedinejad, Hugo Chavez and the like.

    • sam the man

      So we have to be diplomatic,,, since its BBC they can undermine or harrass us,,,, Look here yes we need the wests help, doesnt mean we have to be bum suckers,,,as many srilankans are prone to be,,,

  17. LankaLiar

    Punish all of them that is the law . That is civilised counties do.


      is sri lanka civilized????????

      • R Veda

        Obviously No!

      • sam the man

        To you noo my friend, only US,Canada,France are civilised….

      • Lionel Silva


        Can you please name few so called few ‘civilized countries’ and say why you call them civilized?


      • Hard knox

        Sri Lanka and the Sri Lankans are more civilized compared to many countries in the world including western countries. Also, We would have been economically stronger if he had any credible political leaders. With all the difficulties people face, Sri lanka is one of the best places to live. Guys like Gotabaya is needed to get rid of the ramphant corruption.

  18. CW

    Lakshani & Hettiarachchi should know better than this. Y0u are concerened about the secy’s qualifications. To join the Army as a 2nd Lt those days GCE O/L was a must. But like many other Army Officers Gota & Gen SF would have gone thru a number of courses equivalent to at least a bechelor’s degree. And, one must not forget Gota completed a Deiploma in IT which Gen SF & JVP goons were complaining & criticising about during the Prez Election. Shan you have not quoted what Gen SF said. This may be your version of his statement. Pls read Fredetica Jansz’s article about what he said. I am not justifying what
    Gota said, but look at what priviledges are enjoyed by Gen SF for a person in detension. Can we trust what he says knowing whar he said in the past.? What about the statement he made Re Gota & Maj Gen Shavendra Silva? We saw who was living in hatred during the elction campaign. How many people have left the Gen since the last election? At least 26 party organisors/candidates have left him since. What was the reason. Was that Gota again. People living in glass houses should not throw stones at others.

  19. kumudini

    What on earth is Lakshani about Qualifications . ? Koheda Yanne Malle pol !
    There is no need for qualifications if one has a proven track record . Qualifications do not necessasrily mean that they will deliver the goods . In this case the def sec has delivered the goods and that is good enough .

  20. nikita perera


  21. Hard knox

    I watched and listened to Gotabaya on the BBC Hard talk programme. It was a great interview, Gotabaya was very emotional and his answers came from the heart and the enormous love and appreciation he shows to our heroes who rescued our country from terrorists clique LTTE. What he said about the former General is not a carefully planned political statement. It was spontaneous and said without any hesitation. His words reflect honesty, truth and integrity. On the other hand, we have to look at the credibility of the General. No commanding General in the world history, ever spoken against or alleged the very same soldiers (who paid ultimate sacrifices) for safe guarding the people. The general can hide behind the cloak of a parliamentarian, but nothing can be taken away from a true son (Gotabaya) for loving our country and its soldiers. I am not a fan of Rajapaksa family but I will not stop speaking out to protect those who represent TRUTH, HONESTY and DIGNITY of war heroes and saviors of Sri Lanka. Gotabaya is one of them and I admire his approach.

  22. lakshani

    It is pity to say that Kumuduni has no idea of what responsibilities that has vested on a Permanent Secretary,s position.You may look at the qualifications of other 41 permanent secretarys. Can you match these qualifications with the qualifications of Secretary Deffence. You can be a security chief of a company as a retired Lt colonel.Dont you think this is purely on brothers influence?

    • sam the man

      But didnt he deliver the goods over the much educated secs you talk about, We the people are not interested in qualifications, if the job is well done, and that too more than expected, thats all that matters you can take the qualification paper as u know …

    • Hard knox

      But he did what others could not do. Academic qulifications alone will not make a good permanent secretary. Late Ranjan Wijeratne was a great permanent secretary compared to 99% of the other former and sitting permanent secretaries.

  23. N.C.Wijeratne

    Who said the country has gone to the dogs? It has gone to the Rajapakses!

  24. P.L.J.B.Palipana

    I remember Hon.A.C.S.Hameed’s Saturdays and Sundays with his people of Harispattuwa Electorate from 8.30AM to 12′o clock at night.He was laughing all the time with people and never got angry.

    • san

      One of my friend is from Harispattuwa, ACS Hamid listen to his peolpe Laugh laugh and laugh. Finnally most of his people’s request he put in dustbin,

  25. Mr. Gotabaya did not conform his word and he canot , He said “If he give evidence at any International war prob we will hang him.” That mean’s country people not him self, There for reader’s have to understand, Mr. Stephen Sackur question’s are seem’s to be trap Gota, However investigation is on going we have to wait. proposeing Mr. Sarath Fonseka for Kenya parliament assembly not a wise decision . He is an American greencard holder He will escape and betray the country and his enemy.

  26. Rushdi AL Ayad

    we need more people like Gota to put this country right it a country where people cut of hands to take a ring and not to forget the tsunami incident

  27. kumudini

    to Lakshani again . What has all the 41 qualified sec Delivered ? SEc of defence has the know how and the experience to handle the situation and he excelled in his field . What is the use of qulifications for this ? you only need the intelligence and the correct approach . John major was the PM in the Uk and was one of the best Prime Ministers ,without a proper OL qualification . !

    • lakshani

      To Kumuduni once again.
      After the war victory why President and Gotabaya gave the knife to General Fonseka to cut the inaugural cake.If Gotabaya the man President should have given that opportunity to him. John Major got elected to the British Parliament with peoples mandate.Do you know that we have MP’S who has passed only grade 3 in school. (I can show you the Hansard ) When this type of people becomes Ministers,that ministry is being handled by permanent sectaries.Qualifications not required only to become a politician. Qualifications of a permanent secretary and a politician cannot match,

      • kumudini

        What Lakshani cannot understand is that the best person for the job is not with a string of qualifications to his name but one that can deliver the goods . whether elected or not . the best example is our foreign service where Most of THE CAREER DIPLOMATS APOINTED WITH qualifcations did not carry out thier duty to refute the LTTE propganda in thier respective countries . They did not deliver the goods as far as we know from far back as 1986, To-day it is different scenario when diplomats with no qualifications are doing a better job than the ones with qualifcations .

  28. Sena2

    It is disheartening that some commentators have chosen to raise an issue of educational qualifications concerning Gotabhaya. They ought to be reminded that he is an army Officer who received training in a few countries such as India, Pakistan and the USA for varying periods. Apart from such rigorous and extensive military training, he had an illustrious career in the Army during which he won awards for bravery in action. He rose in hierarchy to function as a Commanding Officer in the Vadamarachchi operation. If all these are duly evaluated, can one imagine what would be his educational and professional worth in terms of a so called degree program? Are we at all justified in saying that he is a man without adequate educational and professional credentials? It seems that some people are out to damage his reputation to serve their own hidden agendas.

    The most critical and crucial roles Gota played as Secretary of Defence in planning for the eventual defeat of terrorism and in the matter of executing such plans are well known and needs no elaboration. Without controversy, he is one of the chief architects of the war victory. The management skills he displayed in carrying out this monumental task are of a very tall and exceptional order. We should focus in this regard on the effective roles he played in relation to such matters as planning and procuring necessary war supplies, selection of a capable team to spearhead the operations, recruitment of adequatge numbers of personnel for the Forces, ensuring of vital coordination among the different forces in executing war operations as a team, etc, among others. There is absolutely no reason for anybody to raise doubts about Gota’s level of professional knowledge and ability for superb performance. He has delivered for all of us to clearly see, if only we have eyes.

    • lakshani

      To Sena2
      Why he retired from the Army on premature basis and left the country?At the time of his retainment war was not that crustal.If he is really loving to the motherland shouldn’t have left to USA.He should have remain in the Army like General SF.

      • Sena2

        He may have had good reasons, personal and otherwise, at the time to leave the Army. May be the compelling reason was he got disillusioned about the way the war was being fought, in a half-hearted manner without adequate political will and determination. But the important thing is he came back and played this pivotal role, as he did, to redeem the motherland from the scourge of terrorism.

    • Bashir

      No wonder!

  29. Sackur thought he was smart; he wanted to take Gota for a sucker. Sackur should have known Gota is no politician but a hard man known to speak his mind. I am glad Sackur got what he deserves. Read what journalist Random Jottings of Manila Times has to say about BBC and its hardtalkman Sackur.

    For us Fonseka was a hero at one time. He had become a traitor not because he contested against Mahinda Rajapakse but he accused our war heroes as war criminals. I just couldn’t stomach that kind of stand. So, I studied a lot about Fonseka and wrote many a write-up to Lankaweb. I also wrote many a comment to various articles by international press and the Sunday Leader. My aim had been to inform the general public the truth and defeat him at the presidential contest. My forecasts were correct and Fonseka lost the presidential election.

    We are eternally grateful to Gota for everything he did to get us out of the mess that lasted for almost 30 years since that Wadukodai resolution. No matter what; we shall try to do everything we could to pay our dues to him in return. Thank you Gota.

  30. muzammil

    When the heart is filled with vengeance, mouth has little room for deplomacy.
    When the head decides,any part of the body can move freely without any
    intervention from the brain and accepts consequences without much hesitation,then there’s something else in the bag.

  31. It is time to apprehend the big Raja and his male associates and castrate all

  32. marcus fernando

    history will repeat

  33. N.C.Wijeratne

    If General SF decides to join the Government he will be exhonorated from everything!
    They call it RULE OF LAW in Sri Lanka!
    Local Laski can write a book on that!And use it for future reference on as precedence!

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