Tuesday, August 21, 2007

Truth About 'DPU' Casualties

Contrary to the newsreports appearing in the Tamilnet and other pro-LTTE websites, the Sri Lanka Army's Long-Range Surveillance/Reconnaissance Patrols have not suffered any serious casualties. Only around twenty Special Forces casualties have been reported since the beginning of the year, none of which were LRS/LRRP. The LTTE's catch phrase 'DPU', meaning Deep Penetration Unit, seems to be applied in general to all troops penetrating into areas held by them. This includes units from the newly formed 57 and 58 Divisions as well. It does not however mean that LRS/LRRP troopers have been ambushed on a regular basis. In-fact, only a few ambushes have taken place over the years. In many cases the entire team or a large number of the 4-8 man team have returned to base. This is despite the increased effort of the LTTE to capture or destroy one of these teams.

It is reliably learnt that the LTTE has moved additional elite troops in an attempt to block the teams' entry into areas controlled by them. The sheer length of the border between government and LTTE held areas makes it impossible to prevent infiltration. One must also not downplay the skill of the LRRP teams. The LTTE's recent attacks on military checkpoints and surprise infiltrations seems to be a ploy to unsettle the police and Homeguards manning such posts, who have successfully detected and seized war-like items bound for the LTTE in recent months, particularly in the Mannar-Vavuniya areas.

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