Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Blackout on Military news

Sri Lanka government has imposed censorship on war reporting a week after Tamil Tiger rebels carried out a devastating attack on an air force base, the biggest ever setback suffered by the government of Mahinda Rajapaksha since he came in to power later 2005.
Under the new regulations issued in a special gazette notification by the President, all sensitive information on military matters are banned from publication or broadcast.
It includes all military operations as well as the arms procuments, it is learned.
Under the new legislation a journalist could be jailed maximum for 05 years for violating the censorship, a copy of the gazette notification obtained by Defence Wire showed.
The president will appoint a competent authority regarding the newly imposed censorship.
Government decision to impose a censorship came after the weekends' newspapers reports on Suicide Black Tiger raid on heavily fortified air force base at Anuradhapura which left at least two dozens of air crafts airworthy.
The attack virtually destroyed Air Force's surveillance capability and training infrastructure.
The previous censorship was in force for three years and lifted in May 2001.

Meanwhile President Mahinda Rajapakse said on Wednesday night that he would issue a new Gazette Notification today (Thursday) withdrawing the imposition of the media censorship laws.


Anonymous said...

from government side they dunt have any other option. they need to censor the news certain extent to avoid information leakage. the same thing happened after the 9/11 attack. US government hides every thing frm public. they were make sure to stop every valuable details frm media. at least one blood stain they didn't give media to report, no dead bodies they were showing in media. at least they didn't allow to take close camera shots on the place. thatz how they took the responsibility.
ppl have right to knw, wht happened there at the same time we all have a responsibility to keep politics apart frm the defence. whtz happening in srilanka is ppl want to take every thing to public just because of gain the political advantages. all of them saying we had this much of loss this much of loss but no one talked abt the heroes who gave their lives to protect the place. as my point of view sri lanka has a cheep media tradition which is always looking after money. they can make news they can change leaders they can brainwash ppl. i m always agree with war news censorship for some kind of extent to control applicable situations since media act carefree idiots. ppl dunt have to knw every thing coz itz another way of feeding tigers.
i m not talking here soo much of faith over GOSL but they maintaining their war front well. tatz enough for me.

GoldenEagle said...


Will this censorship on SL military info afect this blog as well?

NOLTTE=Peace said...

It is a good thing that the Government has done, even if it is late for many decades.

However, the Gazette notification should explain clearly what kind of things that fall under the censorship. It should set clear boundaries going into deeper extents to make it clear what and what is not covered under this notification. Otherwise, people would be confused and would interpret the notification as they want it to be.

Leakage of sensitive military information put hundreds of thousands of peoples' lives at risk. Therefore, it is very important to clearly protect sensitive military information.

asithrimodaya said...

This reminds me of Chandrika's Pariwasa government in the last days.

NOLTTE=Peace said...


If you are considerate about the safety of the Security Forces and the General Public, then you should not be divulging "Sensitive Military Information", even though you live outside Sri Lanka.

This is an open public forum, so we have to act responsibly.

sldf said...

I strongly agree to the fact that media have to act responsibly. Especially when it comes to publishing sensitive military Information on military operations and arms. But I do not agree to a total "Blackout on Military news". People in Sri Lanka have the right to know what's happening. How the GOSL is managing the 'war on terror', how the $500 million bond is spent. I hope GOSL don't go down to the level of Military Junta in Burma. Defencewire I hope you are not affected by this. Even if you are tell the GOSL to go to hell. We all appreciate your contributions to the Sri Lankan community. Without blogs like Defencewire and Defencenet it will be very difficult to for us to see the true picture and what's really happening to our brothers and sisters in the armed forces.

Renegade! said...

goldeneagle,i beleive iqbal athas reported that some time back..the israeli-saar-4 boats are over 2o yrs old..there were problems reported in the gun/fire-control systems,rusted hulls,main gun jamming,radars not functioning effectively,etc,,

Interestingly,even though we were offered brand-new russian bulit missile boats,like molniya-class,etc,,we went ahead with our purchase of these 20-yr vessels..

However,there is no denying the fact that these boats are armed to the teeth with a serious weapon loadout..that is, if the gabriel/harpoon missiles are working..moreover,the boats the israeli's sold us were downgraded,with some of their sensor equipment removed,and also the chaff/decoy dispenser system is not provided,i believe..

Unknown said...

Hi defencewire, I am a silent reader of your blog as well as defencenet and must say I enjoy both, especially yours, you guys have some very well written and insightful articles. So hope this silly censorship issue doesn't affect your writings.

For those posters who are saying this is a good thing, I am sorry but I disagree, no democracy stifles their media like it is being done in Sri Lanka. This just looks like a childish 'knee jerk' reaction and makes the government look bad and like they have something to hide.

National secrets should never make it to the media anyway, censorship or not, that is the responsibility of the government so there is no point saying this will protect national secrets. This just looks like an exercise at minimizing embarrassment.

Don't forget in a democracy the government serves the people, thus it is the peoples right to know the truth, or is the government saying they are no better than the LTTE which quashes freedoms in their areas? There is a difference between the truth and national secrets!

Renegade! said...

defnet,guys srilanka is indeed going ever so deeper into the shit-hole!this government is desperately holding on to power,by hoodwinking the population,increasing COL,borrowing USD500M @ outrageously high interest,etc..we should bring this government DOWN!!just like in countries like burma,indonesia,or even india,we should take to the streets..this is is,i'm fed-up..this government has goto go home..

defencewire,the purpose of this blog is to discuss military matters.i sincerely hope we will be able to do so,in that spirit..

Renegade! said...

guys,i understand that we shoould not reveal info on forthcoming op's & tactics,but this censorship is absurd-the govenment is definitely trying to save face from embarassment,covering up debacles like anuradhapura,mig27 deal,etc..their intention is to rob this country,just like dictators-pol pot,idi amin & our recently passed Saddam!!

NOLTTE=Peace said...

Looks like Rifard is the VPs long lost cousin.

asithrimodaya said...

Sri Lankan Official Says Media Censorship Plan Withdrawn
COLOMBO (AP)--Sri Lanka has withdrawn a plan to censor news about the government's military campaign against separatist Tamil Tiger rebels, a top official said Wednesday.

NOLTTE=Peace said...

Following excerpt is from the text of the Gazette published in Tamilnet..

"any proposed operations or military activity to be carried out by the Armed Forces or the Police Force (including the Special Task Force) or the deployment of troops or personnel, the availability or use of arms, ammunition or other equipment, including aircraft or naval vessels, by the Armed Forces or the Police Force (including the Special Task Force) and the proposed acquisition of arms, ammunition or other equipment, including aircraft or naval vessels by the Armed Forces or the Police Force (including the Special Task Force) which pertains to any operation or other military activity to be carried out by the Armed Forces or the Police Force (including the Special Task Force), for the purpose of maintaining or protecting national security, territorial integrity and the sovereignty of Sri Lanka."

Read closely the above. That's all what has been banned (or planned to be banned, if that has not yet been done).

Can someone tell me what is wrong with it, when a government should act responsibly towards its citizens?

Illegal.existence said...

NOLTTE=Peace, that's what the stated aim is/was, but once something like that comes into effect, there's no saying how far the government will go with it. Laws can be stretched, and if things start going bad and the government covers it up like Chandrika used to do, that would be really, really bad news.

It's one thing to publish our own propaganda, but censoring the media is a whole different ball game, and not somewhere any government should be going.

It'll be nice if the laws are withdrawn, but if they aren't, the Supreme Court may have something to say about it, like they did back in 2001.

onecountry said...


What do you plan to do after bringing down this govt? Giving the country to Ranil?

hemantha said...


What do you plan to do after bringing down this govt? Giving the country to Ranil?"

No. He plans on giving the country to Prbha the fat pig. By the way not much difference weather it’s one way or the other.

Illegal.existence said...

"By the way not much difference weather it’s one way or the other."

Guys, don't forget, if not for Ranil and his 4 years of peace, the country will have been a lot, lot worse off than it is now. He messed up in a lot of ways, but the cessation of hostilities enabled the economy to recover from 2 decades of war, and provided the emphasis for Karuna to break away from the LTTE. Did you really want Chandrika and Ratwatte to continue their war effort until 2005?

hemantha said...


To me
Chandrika war = Ranil peace.

Both of them have in common is lot of faith in terrorists.

Unknown said...

hide and seek game... again who are they trying to fool? not Tamils for sure!

Renegade! said...

WOW! awesome!looks like MR has finally come to his senses..good call on that one,MR..maybe i might have misjudged you on the censorship issue-however,journalists still get beaten up & harassed constantly.i guess that's all part of your chintanaya or chinthy?he.he.

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