Armoured trishaw book banned

BLOG by CERNO

Armoured Trishaws – three wheeled Light Armoured Infantry Close Support Vehicle (LAICSV) — are the most recognisable icon of the Sri Lankan wars. These ungainly yet lethally nimble vehicles were instrumental in decisively ending the conflict. Military analysts have labelled them the “most significant paradigm shift in ground warfare since the tank”. Yet Lucian Hergie’s ground breaking book about their rise, “Scorpions of Paradise; the Role of Light Armoured Infantry Close Support Vehicles in the Sri Lankan War” (Lavanthian Global Press) is about to be banned.

The INGO directing reconstruction efforts, the Centre for Peace Implementation, has labelled the book “a threat to peace, stability and reconciliation”. It has taken the unprecedented step of instructing the newly elected post war federal government to ban the book. According to analyst Goliath White, “The book opens too many wounds and unpalatable facts too soon”.

How a book on a piece of military technology could inflame such a harsh response is surprising. The root of the controversy is that the book goes beyond its brief of documenting the history of a piece of military hardware. The mammoth two volume work stands to become the first in-depth and definitive historical analysis of the war in general and the siege of Colombo in particular. Its narrative is supported by a volume of verifiable primary sources included as a digital media database. Yet it is officially marketed to a non academic audience. The combination according to Mr. White, makes the book a political Pandora’s box of bad memories for the governing coalition.

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iSrilankan Disclaimer: If you think you have missed something important like “when did CMB go under siege” or you are about to believe in the Scorpions of Paradise ….relax and read the writing of Cerno , a perfect read for the times as well as being a rare good piece of writing. Await more from this space and no, I don’t have a clue as to who Cerno is !!

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