Since May 2009, we have been told by government that the Sri Lanka army defeated the LTTE using a combination of new tactics and strategies, undergirded by an unswerving political will helped by weapons supplies, credit lines and diplomatic support from the likes of China, Iran and Pakistan. There are many versions to the story, but the essential ingredients remain the same.

To its credit, the government’s recently concluded Defeating Terrorism: Sri Lankan Experience seminar in Colombo placed on record, from the perspective of the army, the reasons for its victory over the LTTE and lessons learnt. It is far too interesting a document – for what it states as much as for what it does not – to be limited in circulation to the conference attendees alone, and we publish it here for debate and discussion.

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