It's been a long hiatus for GWS, but today's news from Sri Lanka warrants at least some mention from this little corner of the intertubes.
The Sri Lankan army made their final push today, completing their annihilation of the senior leadership of the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam. Reports from the war zone on the eastern edge of the island are difficult to verify, but early dispatches claimed rebel leader Vellupiilai Prabhakaran was among the casualties.
GWS doesn't really know what to say here. He had figured that there are a few conflicts in the world that are intractable and defy political solutions---Israel/Palestine, the divided Koreas, Somalia, and until recently, Sri Lanka. But the crushing final victory by the Sri Lankan army is...well, they should write books on this thing, is all I'm sayin' (and they certainly will). After decades of bloody, brutal, barbaric struggle, of atrocities committed by both sides, after a conflict that saw one of the most innovative and effective guerilla movements in history nearly topple a sovereign state, the SLA finally found its Cannae, encircling the LTTE, wearing them down through relentless atrition tactics, and finally destroying them utterly.
It is far, far too soon to tell what all this means. The Sri Lankan conflict goes deeper than anything the Tigers ever purported to stand for, so it would be too soon to say that peace has come to this beautiful island. But with the destruction of the Tigers in the field, the military balance appears to have shifted permanently away from Jaffna and toward Colombo. DBMIVFK sends all our best wishes to the people of Sri Lanka, Tamil and Sinhalese alike, in the hopes that they can finally put an all-too-costly struggle behind them.