Mission Overseas : A short Book Review
Once I tried to study a little bit about LTTE , especially about the suicide bombers, Black Tigers/ Black Tigress et al...with special interest on their covert international operations, their links with RAW at initial stage etc, I have some good books and many good authentic articles written by experts in my stores. Three of them really stand out - Niromi De Soyza authored 'Tamil Tigress' ( It was her own story is as a child Tamil tigress in Sri Lanka's bloody civil war ) , Gordon Weiss authored 'The Cage' ( About the Tamil fight and about the last days of the Tamil Tigers) and also Christoph Reuter's 'My Life is a Weapon' ( This book is about suicide bombers across the world)..
Anyway, despite my interest on the LTTE I did not have any clear idea about the IPKF operations , except the ideas gleaned from those newspaper articles, news paper reports etc, --in general , the fiasco that India did suffer for this operation. Those were sketchy and I did not have faintest idea as to how deadly the IPKF-LTTE engagements were.
But recently I read a book -- a very thin one at that- ''Mission Overseas'' by Sushant Singh...where the author gave in details and in depth accounts of three Indian overseas operations--one in the Maldives (Operation Cactus), one of the IPKF and the last one on Indian peacekeeping forces in Sierra Leone (where 223 Indian Gorkha soldiers were held captive by guerrillas for 75 days and had to be rescued in a daring military operation-Operation Khukri)..
As I read the book I was awestruck at the details and clarity of the narrations, almost minute to minute panoramic descriptions of the operations, discussions among the military commanders and others --all that.
I was particularly amazed by one of the IPKF operations carried out by the Para Commandos -when they were trapped from all sides by heavily armed LTTE in a residential area of the Jaffna University --for 37 hours-- and how they managed to come out (despite heavy causality being inflicted upon the Indian infantry men (32+), tanks being blown up and senior officers being shot dead at the same time by the guerrillas -who 'kept coming relentlessly in waves' with the heavy weapons blazing and well trained snipers holed up in their nests).. The descriptions are so vivid -- with some honest confessions of the officers about some of their deeds-that you may feel the heat of the close deadly combats on your skin.. The courage, patience and perseverance of the Para commandos are just unimaginable.
Now I am interested to buy some more authentic books on IPKF operations