- Keong hee, huat, ah!!
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- Lies of Criminal Mass Murderer Terrorist Trainer U Wira Thu
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- IN THE ARMY NOW (Comedy) Enjoy this movie during this CNY
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- Not all Malays are equal, some are more so than others by Commander (Rtd) S Thayaparan formerly of the Royal Malaysian Navy
- Playing the trust (Nambekei) card in treacherous times by Commander (Rtd) S Thayaparan formerly of the Royal Malaysian Navy
- Making a stand with Hindraf and PSM by Commander (Rtd) S Thayaparan formerly of the Royal Malaysian Navy
- Gratitude ain't nothing but resentment misspelled by Commander (Rtd) S Thayaparan formerly of the Royal Malaysian Navy
- Who needs to listen, when you can vote by Commander (Rtd) S Thayaparan formerly of the Royal Malaysian Navy
- Much ado over the name of God by Commander (Rtd) S Thayaparan formerly of the Royal Malaysian Navy
- A postcard from an uprising by Commander (Rtd) S Thayaparan formerly of the Royal Malaysian Navy
- Two Years Too Short For Tiger Parts Trafficker Says Traffic
- Regional Islamic Religious Affairs Council sends official letter to Ayeyarwady Regional Hluttaw for its newsletter’s insulting Islam
- ေတာင္စြန္း တြင္ ဘာသာေရး အဓိကရုဏ္း ျဖစ္ေပၚေစရန္ လုပ္ၾကံဖန္တီး လံွဳ႕ေဆာ္မႈမ်ား ျဖစ္ေပၚေန
- [VIDEO] Rakaman Sebut Polis Beri Arahan Huru Hara Di Felda Sungai Tengi
- Happy Chinese New Year To All The Wonderful Chinese Everywhere..^_^
Posted: 09 Feb 2013 10:31 AM PST
Posted: 09 Feb 2013 09:55 AM PST
Posted: 09 Feb 2013 08:00 AM PST
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Posted: 09 Feb 2013 05:46 AM PST
Lies of Criminal Mass Murderer Terrorist Trainer U Wira Thu turning Masoe Yein Monastry in Terrorist training camp
Wira Thu ကေလးၿမဳိ႕မွ ေပးပို႔သည့္ ဗီႏိုင္း ပိုစတာပုံမ်ားသာ ျဖစ္ပါသည္။"
Yan Naing Oo အ႐ွင္ဘုရား ၊အဲဒီ ပံု မွားေနတယ္ ဘုရား ၊ အျမန္ ျပန္ျဖဳတ္လိုက္ပါ ။ အဲဒါ ၃ ဇူလိုင္ ၂၀၁၀ တုန္းက ကြန္ဂိုႏိုင္ငံမွာ ၊ဆီတင္ကား မီးေလာင္တုန္းက ပံု ပါ ဘုရား ။ Link က ။<http://www.afrik.com/article20308.html>
ပံု မွားေနတယ္၀ိရသူ………… ဟ ဟ ဟ ရီ လြန္းလို႕ ငါ ေသးေတာင္ ေပါက္ခ်င္တယ္
ဟာသ ေတြ ရီရတယ္ ဝါး..ဟားဟားဟား…
Posted: 09 Feb 2013 05:09 AM PST
The collapse of the Mubarak regime has been a great blessing for Hamas, which has emerged as a major player. Now Hamas knows that it can always rely on Morsi and the Muslim Brotherhood to stay in power and increase Hamas's influence.Did Hamas dispatch 7,000 militiamen from the Gaza Strip to Egypt to protect President Mohamed Morsi, who is currently facing a popular uprising? Reports that appeared in a number of Egyptian opposition media outlets in the past few days claimed that the militiamen entered Egypt through the smuggling tunnels along the border with the Gaza Strip.
The reports quoted unidentified Egyptian security officials as saying that the Hamas militiamen had been spotted in the Egyptian border town of Rafah before they headed toward Cairo, to shore up the Muslim Brotherhood regime of Morsi, which Hamas may have feared was in danger of collapse. The officials claimed that the Hamas militiamen had been deployed in a number of sensitive locations in the Egyptian capital, including the Al-Ittihadiyeh Presidential Palace, as part of a plan to protect the Muslim Brotherhood regime.
Hamas, an offshoot of the Muslim Brotherhood organization, is a staunch supporter of the Morsi regime. This week, a Gulf newspaper Akhbar Al-Khaleej published what it described as "secret documents" proving that Hamas, with the financial backing of Qatar, had plans to send hundreds of militiamen to Egypt to help Morsi's regime. One of the classified documents, signed by Hamas's armed wing, Izaddin al-Kassam, talks about the need to send "warriors to help our brothers in Egypt who are facing attempts by the former regime [of Hosni Mubarak] to return to power." The reports about Hamas's alleged involvement in the Egyptian crisis have been strongly denied by Hamas officials.
Hamas leader Mahmoud Zahar lost his temper during an interview with an Egyptian TV station; he said the reports were lies intended to tarnish Hamas's image. Zahar accused supporters of the Mubarak regime of being behind the reports depicting Hamas as a terrorist organization helping President Morsi to kill Egyptians. But this was not the first time that Egyptians had accused Hamas of meddling in their internal affairs. In August 2012, reports in the Egyptian media suggested that Hamas was involved in the killing of 16 Egyptian border guards near the border with the Gaza Strip. The perpetrators have never been caught.
Egyptians have also accused Hamas of involvement in a terror attack against a church and attacking prisons in Egypt. Although the talk about Hamas's involvement in terror activities on Egyptian soil may in some cases be exaggerated, repeated accusations against Hamas show that many Egyptians continue to see the radical Islamist movement as a threat to their national security. Hamas has further been accused by some Egyptians of helping other Muslim fundamentalist groups turn Sinai into a base for jihadis from all around the world.
During last week's street clashes in Cairo, anti-Morsi demonstrators torched Hamas and Qatari flags. They also chanted slogans condemning Morsi and his Muslim Brotherhood organization for bringing Hamas militiamen to suppress Egyptian protesters. There is no doubt that Hamas is prepared to do its utmost to help Morsi and his Muslim Brotherhood organization stay in power, even at the cost of killing and torturing Egyptian civilians. The downfall of the Mubarak regime has been a great blessing for Hamas, which has since emerged as a major player in the Palestinian and regional arena. Thanks to Morsi, an Egyptian prime minister visited the Gaza Strip for the first time ever last November to express solidarity with Hamas during Israel's "Pillar of Defense" military operation. Such a visit would have been unthinkable under Mubarak, who did everything he could to weaken Hamas and stop it from meddling in the internal affairs of Egypt.
But now Hamas knows that it can always rely on Morsi and the Muslim Brotherhood to stay in power and increase Hamas's influence. In return, Morsi apparently expects Hamas to reward him by sending its men to defend his palace. Source
Posted: 09 Feb 2013 07:20 AM PST
Kuala Nerus - 200 bendera PAS yang dipasang oleh para petugas disepanjang jalan menuju ke tapak Himpunan Kebangkitan Rakyat -PAS Ganti Umno Kali Ke-7 (PGU7.0) telah dicabut dan dibuang merata-rata termasuk dihumban ke dalam anak sungai berhampiran.
Ekoran perbuatan khianat dan jahat pihak yang tidak bertanggungjawab itu, satu laporan polis telah dibuat oleh seorang petugas PAS, Saufi Hashim.
Menurutnya, pada kira-kira jam 6.00 pagi, beliau telah menerima panggilan telefon dari seorang petugas memaklumkan tentang kerosakan dan kehilangan bendera PAS yang dipasang yang bearada di kawasan kampung Jeram Manir.
Katanya, selepas itu, beliau terus ke tempat kejadian dan mendapati 80% daripada daripada bendera yang telah dpasang lewat malam semalam telah musnah.
"pada kira-kira jam 8.00 pagi, saya telag pergi ke lokasi kejadian dan mendapati bendera PAS telah berada dalam longkang, dalam semak dan dalam parit air (alur),
"hampir 80% keseluruhannya bendera PAS yang dipasang telah dirosakkan sepanjang jalan Kampung Jeram ke kampung Teluk Pasu,"ujarnya dalam laporan polis yang dibuat.
Menurutnya, kerugian yang dialami adalah sebanyak kira-kira RM1,500, akibat kerosakkan terhadap 200 bendera PAS yang telah dipasang.
Beliau melahirkan rasa kesal kerana menurutnya, sebelum pihak PAS memasang bendera-bendera itu, perundingan telah dibuat degan pihak jawatankuasa keselamatan Umno DUN Teluk Pasu. -BO
Posted: 09 Feb 2013 05:09 AM PST
Posted: 09 Feb 2013 04:47 AM PST
Peristiwa yg berlaku semalam di Pahang.
Program ceramah Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim di Felda Bukit Kuantan, dihalang oleh beberapa kumpulan anak muda petang semalam.
Program yang sepatutnya bermula jam 5.45 itu akhirnya dibatalkan selepas Ketua Umum PKR itu mengambil keputusan untuk berpatah balik ke lokasi lain di Cenderawasih, Kuantan (Parlimen Indera Mahkota) akibat tidak mahu berlaku kejadian yang tidak diingin.
Menurut sumber, hampir 20 ke 30 ekor LEMBU upahan yang dipercayai bukan anak tempatan menunggu ketibaan rombongan Anwar di lokasi masuk ke Felda terbabit.
Tidak cukup dengan halangan manusia, mereka juga meletakkan beberapa buah lori yang bertujuan untuk menghalang kenderaan masuk.
Kejadian ini berlaku beberapa hari selepas tragedi serangan di program ceramah Mazlan Aliman dekat Felda Sungai Tengi, Hulu Selangor.
Seperti biasa, dapat dilihat beberapa orang anggota polis juga ada bersama mereka.
Tidak dapat dipastikan, polis memantau atau sebaliknya.
P/S : Petanda-petanda jelas UBN semakin tertekan.....
RESAH menanti REBAH.... -fb PR Supporter
Posted: 09 Feb 2013 12:52 AM PST
"For if you suffer your people to be ill-educated, and their manners to be corrupted from their infancy, and then punish them for those crimes to which their first education disposed them, what else is to be concluded from this, but that you first make thieves and then punish them." - Thomas More (Utopia)
COMMENT My pro-establishment friends get extremely upset whenever I throw around the term 'Umnoputra'. "A complete, mischaracterisation of the Malay struggle," they write in emails in response to articles I have written. Understand now that as someone who has drawn politically incorrect lines in the racial sands of Malaysian politics, I am not sympathetic to the idea that racial preoccupations should be dismissed outright. I do believe that there is a 'Malay struggle' going on in the greater Malay polity but the struggle is a reaction against the dereliction of duty that a sizeable faction of the Malay community accuses Umno of.
I know a few former and current influential Umno members and the difference between the two is that the latter are completely out of touch with the conflicting sentiments of the average Malaysian but more importantly of the average Malay. You could chalk this up to the divergent Umno cultural differences or maybe as I have argued before that sycophancy is rewarded in the so-called Umno Baru. Nowhere is the 'class' difference more apparent than in the recent expose of land deals by the Pakatan Rakyat administration in Selangor, where nobody is shocked to discover that Umno groupies are given a 12 percent discount when they purchase property "cultivated" by Umno.
I wonder what the other component parties in BN think of this. Surely, the MCA would have something to say about it, notwithstanding the 'bumiputera' discount. The MIC on the other hand is not even worth mentioning. Moreover, I wonder does this Umno discount apply to the Malaysian Indian Muslim Congress (Kimma), which has achieved 'non-voting/observer' status in Umno?
Does 'big brother' give their little sibling discounts since it would seem (especially in Penang) the most vociferous defenders of Malay rights are from the Indian Muslim community? To say nothing of the fact that by giving Umno members a discount and not including the other non-Umno aligned Malays a taste from the gravy train, points to a very real split within the Malay community engendered by Umno.
Left out of Umno's patronage
So this Umno sham of protecting Malay rights is revealed and the Malays who do not benefit from Umno patronage are lumped with the other non-desirable 'pendatangs'. However, this is nothing new.
Malays who for whatever reason are unwelcome on the Umno gravy train for years have been complaining that they have been marginalised under the Umno watch, much like their fellow non-Malay citizens but the sad reality is that the discourse is constructed in such a way that racialists have a field day extending the Umnoputra stereotype to every Malay. Thankfully, this is changing. Despite the many criticism hurled at Pakatan Rakyat, collectively what they have managed to do is frame the conflict (on better days) as one of a class not race. In other words, Malaysia is divided along class lines with Umno being a racial oligarchy with the rest of us as some kind of serf class, only here to realise the aspirations of Umno plutocrats.
What I find interesting though is the response of the old school Umno men and women, who view the current class struggle with bewilderment. Many of these men and women were present when Felda schemes (for example) were functional enterprises staffed by non-Malays and Malays who viewed such endeavours as essential in furthering the goals of the social contract and uplifting a disenfranchised community. These Malaysians (Malay and non-Malay) viewed paternalistic laws as a safeguard against provocations by either side of the political divide. As one self-described Umno woman, who in another life was part of an education system which favoured English as a tool to developed nation status, said:
"Take this charlatan, Ibrahim Ali. If the authorities wanted to send a message that sensitivities must be protected, they would have sent balaclava-clad officers to his house in the dead of the night and bundled him up in an unmarked car. Why not? This is what they have done to other agitators. In this case, he mocks the laws. I am glad I am out of it. Such are the unsavoury characters who are the face of Umno."
I have no ideas who are the current spin-doctors or strategists of Umno or even if they are all working on the same page but like the Bush administration post-9/11, they seem to be living in an era of unreality.
The wooing of Chinese tycoons
Take Prime Minister Najib Razak's courting of Chinese tycoons. This very image conjures up a bygone era where racial preoccupation, or more specifically Chinese preoccupations, where serviced by the plutocrats who held sway in MCA. As I have argued before, the needs of the Chinese community have changed and through their subservience to Umno, the MCA have become the fat cats who had no problem licking the cream but were negligent in carrying out their duties to the community they were supposed to represent.
Najib, in a Suharto-like moment, is extolling these bottom feeders that Umno was the only way to go, but ignores the fact that the alternative alliance is not only financed by popular will but also covertly by the very business interests that Najib seems to think holds sway over the community. It only partially worked for Suharto who was a shrewder political operative than anything Umno could come up with, but successive Indonesian administrations discovered the folly of actively encouraging the perception that race and money as a political bargaining chip would create a harmonious multiracial/religious polity. It would have been more constructive if Najib had delivered his speech from a pulpit instead of a gaudy dinner (I am assuming it would have been gaudy) if he wanted to attract a certain section of the Chinese vote.
After all, the DAP has locked down the Chinese/Christian vote and has made significant inroads in Sarawak by pursuing themes of religious oppression (engineered by Umno). In the peninsula, DAP has successfully made the case with its coalition partners that issues such as the environment (Lynas) , religious freedom (the 'Allah' issue) and compromised security apparatus (Teoh Beng Hock, et al) are human rights issues which should be the concern of everyone, not only those in the Chinese community. Even though in the case of Lynas and the 'Allah' issue for instance, it is a certain vocal section of the Chinese community which is leading the cause. So, not only is the MCA out of touch with the Chinese community, so it would seem is Umno.
Fomenting divisions is Umno's art
Umno may be confident that the vote banks in Sarawak and Sabah would ensure that they remain in power, which would probably explain why Najib is involved in a vicious power struggle with the vultures who subscribe to the go-at-it-alone policy. I do wonder though that even if the "Malay numbers" are enough to maintain hegemony, the reality on the Malay ground would ensure that Umno's dream of perpetual rule would be in jeopardy. I wrote about how the armed forces were mired in the Umno quagmire. The recent revelations by former army deputy chief Lt-Gen (Rtd) Abdul Ghafir Abdul Hamid that military facilities and equipment were like "third world facilities" is evidence that the culture of corruption or "leakages", to use a Khairy Jamaluddin euphemism, has eroded the goodwill of a certain section of the Malay polity.
When a now retired air force general makes the Umno pitch that the armed forces personnel should be grateful to the ruling coalition for "taking care" of them and the resources available to armed forces personal are the envy of most countries conflicts with the reality that this general exposes, one has to wonder how long can Umno rely on the gratitude of a bloated civil and military service whose welfare Umno seems disinterested in?
Splitting communities and reinforcing prejudices is what Umno really excels at. Only now, a foreign president has denounced what we Malaysians have known all along. Of Najib's visit to Gaza, Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas declared, "[The visit] undermines Palestinian representation and reinforces the division and does not serve Palestinian interests."
At the end of the day, the only interests Umno serves is its own. Every institution is compromised. The judiciary seems to be slowly waking up but in this period of prolonged shadow play, everything is suspect. Eventually the gravy train will stop and those unlucky Umnoputra passengers left on board will be at the mercy of their own splintered community with nothing left to lose. Malaysiakini
Posted: 09 Feb 2013 12:48 AM PST
"A body of men holding themselves accountable to nobody ought not to be trusted by anybody." - Thomas Paine
COMMENT One has to wonder why the Umno narrative of 'nambikei' (trust) is aimed squarely at the Indian community. It is as if Umno spin-doctors realise that this particular form of propaganda would not play well with the other two dominant communities. As one Umno strategist told me, dividing the Indian community is easy since the political terrain is hostile to the Indian community with parties either dismissing the Indian vote or taking it for granted. However, unlike some I am not too concerned with the Indian vote. Either it will shift back to the ruling regime because the propaganda works (with enough goodies thrown in) or it will play a significant role in ensuring the Pakatan Rakyat coalition sustains the status quo or even better comes into power - this depending on if Pakatan and Hindraf play well together.
Indians are reminded of their place in the order of things. Do not worry. In the end, the Malays will win the numbers game and any form of compromise will not be required. Whatever principles other than Umnoism or some form of Islam, which could have been an alternative, would have been lost. The sad reality is that we are still playing the same game which I believe every right-thinking Malaysian is aware of (and would like to change) instead of laying the foundation for some form of egalitarian alternative. In other words, besides the whole ABU (Anything But Umno) concept, most Malaysians are aware that the opposition front is a stand in for the racial groupings of BN albeit with less corruption.
Either way the disenfranchised of the Indian community has some way to go before some sort of equilibrium could be reached with the other communities in this country. As a Pakatan supporter, I believe the road would be less treacherous if the community makes a stand with the alternative coalition, even though the said coalition has been only marginally "better" in addressing the concerns of the Indian community.
Can Umno be trusted?
No, something that has been bothering me for some time now is the concept of trust. More specifically, trust in our politicians. Pakatan supporters (including me) mock Prime Minister Najib Razak when he mocks the Indian community in their mother tongue when nothing in his tenure suggests that trust has been earned. Meanwhile the racial politics within the alternative alliance is submerged beneath the feel good rhetoric of change and the almost daily accounts of Umno-BN malfeasances propagated by the alternative press and ignored by the mainstream propaganda organs. Trust is hard to come by here in Malaysia.
Umno says trust us. It tells its supporters not to trust opposition leader Anwar Ibrahim, whom they accuse of dividing the Malay community. They accuse the DAP of wanting to supplant Malay hegemony with Chinese-style democracy, so do not trust them. They accuse PAS of being unIslamic or worse hypocritical to their Islamic values, so do not trust PAS too. And if you are a Umno-BN supporter all this may seem like a reasonable proposition. However digging a little deeper, you would realise that it is Umno which is literally dividing the Malay community with the injection of foreign nationals into the polity, Project M being a glaring example. It is Umno which has supplanted Malay hegemony with a plutocracy of cronies which include members of the Chinese and Indian communities that has sustained its grip on power.
And lastly (and here is the brilliant part) as a moderate Islamic country, Umno has simultaneously silenced radical Islamic thought in this country while advancing an Arabisation process that for the most part has left untouched the 'other' communities but which has calcified the minds of a sizeable section of the Malay polity. This twisted scheme had the singular aim of dividing through religion, the various communities in Malaysia and at the same time, ensuring that 'moderate' Malaysians (including Muslims) voted BN, as they kept the Islamic bogeyman at bay. We should never forget that it was a Palestinian head of state (President Mahmoud Abbas) who accused another Muslim head of state (Najib) of dividing the ummah.
But what of Pakatan? My pro-establishment friends always ask me if I can "trust" Pakatan when Pakatan is led by a politician (Anwar) who had a road to Damascus-like conversion. This whole Project M debacle and the role Anwar denies he played a part in is evidence to some, that the herd is led by a wolf in sheep's clothing. As I said before, I have very little interest in what Anwar did before or his protestation of his former political life. Arguing who is to be trusted more - Anwar or former PM Mahathir Mohamad - is disingenuous, especially if you commit to one or the other.
No, the only intellectually or morally tenable position (if one believes in second chances) is to judge what these Pakatan politicians say and do now, in their role as possible contenders to the Putrajaya throne. The only way for us to move out of this quagmire is to make a choice to change administrations and hold accountable those we claim are for change.
Breeding ground for frogs
I never understood the BN strategy of defending their corruption by pointing out the corruption of others, as I will never understand the Pakatan response of totally ignoring the evidence, as if hypocrisy and feigned ignorance were ever suitable defences. Pakatan seems to be a breeding ground for political frogs. Perhaps it is something in the Pakatan eco-systems. While a principled politician like Zaid Ibrahim is mangled and vilified by the Pakatan machine, various potentates arise eagerly awaiting their time for a chance to benefit under the banner of change.
The corruption scandals in Kedah, Selangor and Kelantan or the hyperactive corporate activity in Penang, which the faithful choose to down play or ignore, is building up. Umno is always used as a yardstick (and rightfully so) but any attempt to warn of such dangers is shouted down or platitudes are thrown that all will be well when federal power is achieved. Very few and certainly not many (influential) in Pakatan seriously consider a programme of decentralisation of power. Meanwhile political ineptness or maybe just plain old political skullduggery compromises agreed principles.
The 'Allah' controversy is the perfect example. All parties and this includes BN had come to a reasonable compromise and this should have been an end to the story. Unfortunately the DAP for whatever reasons decided to stir the religious pot, the end results being that PAS has had to backtrack on principles already agreed to. So, not only did the DAP backtrack (see the pathetic party line on how Penang Chief Minister Lim Guan Eng's speech was only meant for the residents of Sabah and Sarawak), they managed to drag their coalition partners into the mess.
Now Pakatan can proudly say that it has an eco-terrorist wannabe amidst their ranks in the personage of Himpunan Hijau president Wong Tack. Pakatan, of course, has milked every bit of political mileage out of the Lynas fiasco and although this may be spun as an ecological issue, the reality is that it is a Chinese-dominated concern. Some DAP apparatchiks and Pakatan kool-aid drinkers have been quick to justify Wong's threat but who is Wong to hold to ransom a democratically elected government - Pakatan or BN - with threats of violence.
Wong may think he is playing the martyr card but all those morons who think that Wong's "anguish" justifies violence of any kind should be seriously consider the realpolitik of the threat and what it could lead to considering the racial elements at play at this moment in Malaysian election history. Wong Tack (right) dares to make this silly claim. This goes beyond concern into the territory of hubris. I doubt he even understands what it takes to bring down a facility like the Lynas plant. I know of professionals who know exactly how it could be done and if the implication is that Wong has access to the same expertise or knowledge, even more reason for him to serve a stint in a government-holding cell.
He proudly says that he would accept the consequences of his actions but what of the consequences to the rest of the opposition forces in this country and to citizens who would be drawn into a conflict that would spread beyond the Lynas issue? If ever there comes a time for violent revolution in this country, I know which community would be out in the streets tearing each other apart and which community would barricade themselves in their homes meekly living off their stockpile of canned goods. You want to talk about trust. Pakatan should immediately disassociate itself with Himpunan Hijau and Himpunan Hijau should immediately call a vote of no confidence against Wong Tack or whatever procedures they have in place for a change of leadership.
This brazen call for violence should not be tolerated. This is the nature of the discourse in this country - burn the things you oppose, be it Malay-language bibles or rare earth plants. As I said, it is easy to mock Najib when he babbles on about "trust" but this close to the elections we had better make sure that the alliance that represents change earns our trust and the only way to do this is to ensure that our ABU perspective does not cloud our natural instinct to be distrustful of those who claim to have our interest at heart and we should never, ever, let the zealots be the dominant voices in the discourse. Malaysiakini
Posted: 09 Feb 2013 12:40 AM PST
"Associate yourself with people of good quality, for it is better to be alone than to be in bad company." - Booker T Washington
COMMENT That's right; it is Indian-bashing season again. This close to elections Indians are told to get with the Pakatan Rakyat programme by anonymous DAP apparatchiks and Pakatan kool-aid drinkers. The Indian vote is depending on the sensibility of the Pakatan supporter is either considered insignificant or crucial, but the narrative put forward is that Indian rights groups like Hindraf and the Human Rights Party, and to a lesser extent Parti Socialis Malaysia (no doubt because of the heavy Indian presence), are possible spoilers for the Pakatan quest to Putrajaya.
The Indian community is vilified with choice epithets like "beggars", "ignorant","toddy drinkers" "snakes", etc, with middle-class Pakatan-supporting Indians attempting to cajole their brothers and sisters into siding with Pakatan as if those poor unfortunate souls are unaware of the systemic discrimination that they face under the Umno-led regime. It is the same stupid attitude on display whenever Pakatan supporters discuss the Orang Asli "problem". The theme this time is of legitimising marginalised groups. Two examples of how dominant groups legitimise minority interest is the U-turn by BN on the Hindraf ban and the reluctance of Pakatan in admitting PSM into its coalition.
Concerning the latter, it would seem a no brainer politically and morally for Pakatan to embrace PSM as fellow travelers on its journey to Putrajaya. Politically, because of late Pakatan has credibility issues when it comes to their principles. There have been far too many instances where Pakatan has waffled when they should have remained firm, and has embroiled themselves in unnecessary controversies because of political ineptness and provided evidence of their racialist tendencies when they are supposed to be a multiracial, "class" objective coalition. PSM, on the other hand, has remained a credible consistent force when it comes to its socialist principles and the internal workings of its political party. They have publicly made stands against the systemic discrimination that plagues this land and have not wavered even in the face of political expediency or racial advantage.
Members of this recent political party have been at the grassroots level opposing this regime far longer than the newbie but powerful potentates that Pakatan has created. If real change is the name of the game, then the players who are aware of how the rules disadvantage a majority of Malaysians who belong in the periphery of the political game should be welcomed into the alliance as valuable assets.
The choice is obvious
Of course, now PSM is involved in a tussle with the influential DAP over the Jelapang seat in Perak. This no doubt contributes to the reticence of Pakatan of welcoming PSM into the fold. Whatever ones view on who should eventually take the seat, right-thinking Malaysian should not allow these power plays to distract from the fact a credible political force which could act as a buffer against the baser political instincts that plague most successful political entities is being denied a seat at the table.
Morally, the choice should be obvious. The work of PSM leader MD Jeyakumar (left) speaks for itself (and whose speech at the KL112 Himpunan Rakyat, is a clear indication of the kind of government the PSM would like to see created) but there are others like S Arutchelvan who has propagated the cause of grassroots level activism that has been a great benefit to Pakatan. You do not have to look very far to witness the passion of PSM adherents like KS Bawani and the temperament that would be introduced into Pakatan if organisations like PSM were to be made an integral part of the alliance. At the end of the day, to any right-thinking Malaysian, the reluctance of Pakatan in admitting PSM into its ranks says a lot more of Pakatan than it does about PSM and none of it any good.
Concerning the government's reversal on the Hindraf ban, the head of think-thank Centre for Policy Initiatives' Dr Lim Teck Ghee articulates three issues that are relevant to the discussion at hand. On the political nature of the reversal, Lim says: "This is obviously a move calculated to win Indian votes in the coming elections rather than a fundamental shift in the BN's resolve to address the marginalisation of the Indian community and the many problems that the community - especially the Indian poor - face. To deny that this is an election ploy is to insult the intelligence of Indian and other Malaysian voters." The second issue is the effects this has on the Indian vote, of which he says:
"I do not think so but much depends on Hindraf's response. The movement is seen by many Indians as one of the few if not sole Indian organisation committed to the Indian struggle for equal rights and justice. "Even if the BN publicly accepts Hindraf's blueprint, I do not see why Hindraf should give BN the nod of approval at this critical stage. There is in fact nothing to prevent BN from going back on its promises or for the home minister to declare a new ban on Hindraf again or to do even worse once the elections are over." And finally the big issue, will the Indian vote shift back to BN? Lim notes:
"The BN has a long history of sweet talk - and often double talk. Indians especially have been the victim of BN empty promises and the great majority of Indian voters are fully aware of this. Until there are fundamental changes in national policies affecting minority communities - of which there is no evidence - I do not see why Indians should throw their support behind the BN simply because of the home minister's change of heart."
The better horse to bet on
While I agree with Lim's assessment, there is another issue that needs to be addressed. Hindraf is a non-partisan organisation. Like any other rights group, its special interest needs to be addressed and even though Pakatan may think otherwise, Hindraf does have the support of marginalised Indian communities across Malaysia. The question here is which political alliance would best serve that interest. Ignorant comments are made that Hindraf is not "principled" but as any right-thinking Malaysian understands, Hindraf would be unprincipled if they chose to commit to an alliance because it was politically expedient to do so or politically correct in this partisan climate at the expense of its stakeholders.
Just as Himpunan Hijau have committed to working with Pakatan (in Pahang) because the alliance verbally agreed to shut down the Lynas plant in Gebeng if it came into power, the needs of other rights groups should be taken into consideration. Since the alternative alliance is dominated by the other two main ethnic groups and there is plenty of evidence that the needs of the Indian community have been marginalised in Pakatan states - P Uthayakumar (left) in my interview with him, provided a litany of grievances all documented from verifiable sources - Pakatan (my preferred choice as a Pakatan partisan) should engage with Hindraf to sustain its multiracial credentials and as evidence that it is sincere in its social justice cause.
The alliance should do whatever is necessary to convince Hindraf leadership that Pakatan is the better horse to bet on, not of winning Putrajaya but rather in its commitment in solving the problems of the marginalised Indian community even if only at a state level. Pakatan is labouring under the misconception that Hindraf brings nothing to table. In an election that may come down to the wire, every vote counts. While Hindraf may not for whatever reason choose to engage with BN, another possibility is that the Indian community may abstain from voting - choosing neither devil - which could be a very real possibility since neither coalition seem interested in committing to solving the problems that only Hindraf and the Human Rights Party highlight in any sincere way.
Hindraf leadership have been extremely sophisticated in the manner it has gone about cultivating grassroots support from the Indian community and the said support is dependent on Hindraf delivering what it has promised. However as far as dealing with BN, Hindraf has to be aware that it is never a good idea drinking from the poisoned chalice.
At the end of the day, much will depend on how the Malay vote swings. Both sides assume that they are the favoured to win the Malay vote. If Pakatan were mistaken in this belief than every vote, counts and it would be a shame if a certain section of the Indian community falls back into apathy because Pakatan (again) made another politically inept move only this time not recognising the gains Hindraf brings to the table. Malaysiakini
Posted: 09 Feb 2013 12:37 AM PST
"The only thing that will redeem mankind is cooperation." - Bertrand Russell
COMMENT Since pro-opposition media (solely) do not inform my political stance and since the general election is creeping up on us, I thought I would just address an issue that has some currency in pro-establishment circles and is a very overt propaganda tool of the current regime inflicted on Malaysians. The issue is one of "gratitude" and before I go further, the usual caveat applies. I write as a pro-opposition supporter who speaks on behalf of no one but himself. On this subject, kudos to Universiti Utara Malaysia law student KS Bavani for declaring her political sympathies outright and not having to do the uncomfortable explaining when pro-establishment types unearth her political party leanings.
If you are going to take stands against the status quo or against conventional pro-establishment ideology, credibility demands that everyone is aware of the platform you are speaking from (if any). I do admit though, I cringe whenever local leftist point to good old "Che" as a source of inspiration. Surely, Parti Socialis Malaysia (PSM) can come up with relevant and perhaps geographically correct icons for their young adherents and I do not necessarily mean Rashid Maidin, whose ideology is often willfully confused with socialism.
However, back to "gratitude". Every time Umno hegemony is threatened, this old canard is dug up and thrown in our faces. Every time this issue crops up, and depending on the partisan nature of the media concerned amongst the civil comments, you will discover the rantings of (especially) Umno race supremacists or DAP apparatchiks. I would really love to put them in a virtual cage together. I wonder what happens when delusional brainwashing meets hypocritical groupthink. Former prime minister Dr Mahathir Mohamad has added his particular venom to this meme when he declared that Tunku Abdul Rahman "had done worse" when granting citizenships to the non-Malays as a "defence" against his own black operations in Sabah.
So added to the idea that we (non-Malays) should be grateful is the threat that our citizenship is suspect. The Malays, on the other hand, should be grateful to Umno for protecting their "rights" which seems to include being subjugated to a particular form of Islam (I am not being seditious or insensitive here, seeing as how Umno has declared that they have been chosen by God or Tuhan or Allah) and sheltering them from any kind of egalitarianism. Citizens (Malay and non-Malay) who do not subscribe to this dogma are considered ungrateful interlopers or race traitors. One rather provocative expression of this kind of thinking is the idea that "nobody consulted the Malays when citizenship was granted to the non-Malays", which was part of our Merdeka deal brokered with our British overlords.
My question is did anyone consult the Orang Asli when it was discovered that their lands were part of the greater 'Malay' diaspora? Did anyone consult the 'Malays' when the various Malay rulers in the great game of British imperialism carved up their lands? Were the indigenous peoples of Sabah consulted when their land suddenly enjoyed an influx of newly-minted citizens?
'Melayu sudah bangun'
As a former pro-establishment spin-doctor told me, it is not that "Melayu mudah lupa", it is just that for a certain section of the Malay polity, it is "Melayu sudah bangun". What Umno fails to realise is that they have endured for so long because a majority of Malaysian were apathetic and this to Umno translated to "gratitude". It was anything but. Beneath it all, was years of resentment building up. Politicians from both sides of the divide played up the communal fears and expectations, which was the real social contract.
This resentment takes many forms. Class and race politics are conflated with religious issues. Malaysians regardless of race - thanks to a resurgent opposition, a freewheeling alternative media and a regime involved in its own internal power plays - suddenly find themselves having to address their issues of resentment in a very public manner. As far as the presence of non-Malays in this country, forget about the historical distortions and the racial re-engineering. The most credible argument that the rot of fascism is present in any political entity is when political parties (for instance) demands "gratitude" from the electorate.
What the Biro Tatanegara (BTN) courses have done remarkably well is to divert the sense of resentment of the Malay community away from Umno towards the non-Malay communities.
Fortunately, for us non-Malays, Umno has been derelict in its duties towards the Malay community that after years of affirmative action, the community still are unable to compete with their fellow Malaysians and their community being racially re-engineered to suit the hegemonic purposes of a political party that was supposed to "protect" their rights. The rhetoric coming out of Pakatan Rakyat is that the alternative alliance is better suited to this goal than a decrepit infighting BN.
Non-Malays are resentful that they are constantly told to be grateful for citizenship when their presence here has contributed to the economic viability of this country. They are resentful that laws are applied selectively where proponents of the regime are allowed a measure of free speech while those associated with oppositional politics operate under a sword of Damocles. They are resentful of racial policies meant to help the disenfranchised but were in reality used to consolidate power.
For far too long this regime lectured us that we had to give up certain rights for the greater goal of peace and stability. Public demonstrations were anathema to our so-called Malaysian values and they were detrimental to the economic well-being of this country. We were told that we should be grateful that Umno and Umno alone protected us from the forces that would destroy the delicate fabric of racial harmony. In just one day, the Jan 12 Himpunan Kebangkitan Rakyat buried that lie. Never mind the numbers but the reality is that a large mass of people congregated with diverging political, religious and social agendas and it was not the end of the world. It could be an indication of the end of the Umno world but that is another story.
We are all in this together
I wish more non-Malays participated in the event because it was a moment in Malaysian politics where for a certain section of the voting public, our aspirations and resentments was an avenue to express our dissatisfaction with the current regime. The only gratitude that one felt was the feeling of gratefulness that for that day at least we were all in this together. The irony is that the longer Umno stays in power, the less likely Umno will be able to make the case that the public should be grateful for what Umno has given. The longer the split within the Malay polity, the more evident that "gratitude" asked is a morally and intellectually bankrupt proposition.
The more citizens rediscover the history of this country, light shines on the lie that non-Malays have to be grateful towards a specific community through their self-appointed political guardian. Let me be very clear. I will never feel any gratitude towards any single community for my place in the Malaysian sun. I expect none in return. This is our country. We (and by "we" I mean every single Malaysian regardless of race and which includes political alliances like the alternative coalition) helped build it and nothing will change this fact. However, this does not mean that gratitude has no place in the discourse. For Malaysians, whichever "side" you are on, who have attempted through rational discourse in spite of differing perspectives to make this country a better place, I unearthed my copy of Alexandre Dumas's 'Count of Monte Cristo', for a line which best describes my attitude towards gratitude:
"Be happy, noble heart, be blessed for all the good thou hast done and wilt do hereafter, and let my gratitude remain in obscurity like your good deeds." Malaysiakini
S THAYAPARAN is Commander (rtd) in the Royal Malaysian Navy. The headline of this piece is a corruption of a title of a book by Harlan Ellison, that great American wordsmith.
Posted: 09 Feb 2013 12:30 AM PST
'A house built on greed cannot long endure.' - Edward Abbey (Postcards from Ed: Dispatches and Salvos from an American Iconoclast)
COMMENT You are not one of us. Corollary to that, we decide if you are one of us. For the past couple of decades, this has been Umno's mantra. A couple of incidents this past week highlight this proposition. Like most right thinking Malaysians, I watched with dismay the exchange between law student KS Bavani and that harridan, Sharifah Zohra Jabeen Syed Shah Miskin. If you ever wonder why it is that BN types like Sharifah like to remind "us" to leave if we are unhappy with how this country is run, look no further than the royal commission of inquiry on immigrants in Sabah.
What is slowly being unearthed in this commission is that constitutionally-created Malays and rent-a-voters ensure that Malaysia is well stocked with an electorate where subservience instead of any genuine sense of belonging is of paramount importance. Think of it as the Stepford Citizens.
PKR deputy president Azmin Ali does not have to be too concerned of what role Anwar Ibrahim played in the treason that was inflicted on Malaysians through the Sabah black operations. I was more pissed off when Anwar sent Azmin to head Sabah PKR for a spell. As an opposition supporter, I am very aware that if you rifle through Anwar's political baggage, you will find Umno's dirty linen.
However at this point, nothing the commission reveals would make any difference. As former prime minister and the alleged architect of the mischief in Sabah said, a royal commission will "not do anything at all". These so-called whistleblowers paint a picture of deliberate racial re-engineering but as the old manipulator says, "the border between southern Philippines and then-British North Borneo was not well recognised. "People used to go back and forth and so these are not foreigners but people who feel they are in a better position in Sabah and so stayed there for a long time," said Dr Mahathir Mohamad.
Of course, nobody cares of the stateless Indians and Chinese who have been here longer than 20 or 30 years, but maybe it is because they do not speak Malay. It would be interesting to see the percentage of these newly-minted Malay/Malaysians that fulfill the criteria set down by the old manipulator.
The treachery of Umno runs deep and no amount of digging will provide any closure or rectify present problems, since Umno has demonstrated no commitment to the idea of good governance beyond maintaining the facade that stability means an acquiescence to corruption, that religious and racial preoccupations shall be controlled by a prejudiced state and that gratitude in the face of the malfeasances shall be the only acceptable response.
But I digress.
What Sharifah expected from her audience as Umno does, is that in order for you to be "one of us" the only response is a Pavlovian one. We give you free Galaxy Notes (for instance) and you sublimate whatever human impulse to disagree. What Bavani did, thanks to her self-described PSM education, was to question the status quo and being a rational person that she seems, she expected a rational response. What she got was the usual Umno polemics questioning her loyalty to a system that demands servitude and gratitude. Now even though I disagree with some points of PSM's socialist ideology, I think Bavani is a perfect example of a spirited activist working for the betterment of a country and people she obviously cares for. This obviously has a lot to do with what PSM is teaching its young adherents.
However, can pro-establishment partisans claim the same? What kind of education is the regime propagating when the most famous public example of students activism, is the students of Universiti Putra Malaysia engaging in an orgy of hate against the LGBT (lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender) community and conveniently dragging in oppositional figures as proxies for the Umno state's war against Pakatan Rakyat. Equal time may demand that we listen to Sharifah's side of the story but in my opinion the most important lesson here, is that young people stand up to authority and question the status quo in a rational manner.
This lesson extends beyond questioning Umno but also questioning our preferred political parties. From my interviews with Siput MP Dr D Michael Jeyakumar, a culture of debate is actively cultivated within PSM. Members of PSM are encouraged to voice their opinions but more importantly disagree. Blind unquestioning self-serving loyalty is the province of Umno-BN but unfortunately, it is something that is making it presence felt in oppositional politics. Pakatan partisans should vehemently reject this and although solidarity is vitally important especially this near to a history-changing election, opposition supporters should never be cowed by majority voices to conform to a group think that destroyed Umno-BN a long time ago. We should honestly confront contrarian opinion and criticisms.
However let us get back to the "we decide if you are one of us" proposition that I opened this piece with. The Federal Court's dismissal of Jeyakumar's case against the federal government for refusal to disburse funds to opposition members of parliament was disappointing but not unexpected. Raus Sharif, the president of the Court of Appeal, stated that the court had no jurisdiction over the matter but included, "In appropriate cases the court is duty bound to intervene, especially where the policy or action of the executive is inconsistent with the constitution and the laws, or in any manner of arbitrary, irrational, elements of mala fide and abuse of power."
Readers should be aware that as the High Court has observed that Umno decisions have been "tainted with irrationality" as in the case of Home Minister Hishammuddin Hussein and his declaration that Bersih was an "unlawful" organisation. So maybe one day, the Umno policy of not disbursing funds to opposition MPs would be considered arbitrary, irrational and contain elements of mala fide and abuse of powers. Of course, these funds come from our taxes and Umno's discretion not to avail them to opposition MPs is merely Umno spitting on our faces when we exercise our democratic rights. As always, there is retribution for not toeing the Umno line.
Moreover, the only people who are hurting (in this particular case) are the residents of Sungai Siput who dared kick a BN lackey out. I asked Jeyakumar (left in photo) how one operates with all the obstacles the federal government put up. "How do we score our political points? By engaging in the areas where we have a comparative advantage. The PSM is quite adept at organising communities facing eviction pressure from developers and government. We have used this experience to organise more than 25 communities in Sungai Siput to defend their land and/or their houses.
"For the past five years, my budget has come to about RM220,000 per year. About a third of that comes from my parliamentary allowance. The remaining two-third is from friends and relatives who have been very, very generous. "Our service centre is a one-stop centre for any problems that people might face - from IC (identity card) to BC (birth certificate) applications, Socso (Social Security Organisation) applications, housing loan problems, labour cases, welfare applications, police abuse, etc.
"This I have been running ever since my 1999 debut in Sungai Siput. So definitely, we have developed a lot of experience as to how to handle these problems and I have managed to share this expertise with my full-timers. This is another very concrete form of help that we can give people."
Culture of corruption
Umno's game playing when it comes to disbursement of funds to opposition members of parliament like most Umno policies has consequences that have a deleterious effect on Malaysian society. The lack of accountability in the federal administration just breeds further arrogance and contributes to the culture of corruption that Umno could not stem even if it had a sincere interest in doing so, as Jeyakumar says, "But if we do take Putrajaya we have to put constituency funding on a more stable and accountable base. I believe funds should be made available to the MPs to do their job. But it has to be properly accounted for and should be made available to both ruling and opposition MPs equally."
But more importantly, it spreads a culture of corruption to the opposition members of parliament who have to seek funds from other sources to effectively carry out their duties to their constituents. Here is where big/small business collide politics, which is the bane of politics everywhere. This is an issue that activist/politicians like Jeyakumar are concerned with.
"An MP needs funds to run his service centre and pay his staff. He needs research assistants. If we insist that he raises these funds himself, it opens the door to business influence. Businessmen will provide these funds but they would also expect certain favours. Wouldn't it be better for our role as 'wakil' rakyat if we could be freed of the need to cultivate businessmen" he says.
"But where do we go from here?" asks Azly Rahman in his piece 'Lesson from 'listen, listen, listen' written in prose reminiscent (to me at least) of early cyberpunk pioneers. Jeyakumar has an answer (I just wish there were more politicians like him).
"Boot these bunch of clowns out of office!" Malaysiakini
Posted: 09 Feb 2013 12:25 AM PST
"The opinions that are held with passion are always those for which no good ground exists; indeed the passion is the measure of the holders lack of rational conviction. Opinions in politics and religion are almost always held passionately." - Bertrand Russell (Sceptical Essays)
COMMENT There are no complexities in the 'Allah' issue except the simplicity of craven agendas of political parties desperate to hang on to power or desperate to claim power. As always, when it comes to Islam, outrage is nearly always manufactured. Only this time, after a period of cessation, the outrage was manufactured by the DAP. I have already discussed the politically inept manner in which the DAP chose to handle this issue through its party's Christmas day message. The fact that the Selangor sultan has decided to intervene, thereby fostering the perception that Islam again is under siege (sic), points to the perilous endgame that Umno wishes to play and the opposition alliance (which should know better) seem intent on joining.
Umno watchers as opposed to partisan watchers I have talked to, agree that with the Selangor sultan entering the fray, it merely points to the declining influence of Prime Minister Najib Razak within Umno. While the right-wing elements in his party continue to stir the religious and ethnic pot, Najib is making a spectacle of himself attempting to position himself as a moderate voice when it comes to religion and race. His various meetings with simpatico Christian (and others) religious heads and the disbursements to various non-Malay causes, has had little impact on a certain section of the electorate.
The conventional Umno wisdom is to take the hardline and non-Malay support be damned. What certain factions within Umno hope to achieve with the opportunity that the opposition has given them is to dethrone a lame duck prime minister and light the fire for an Islamic revival that they believe they can contain. Meanwhile the DAP who has more or less locked down the Chinese vote, continues to coddle the Christian evangelical movement within its rank, which finds expression in the putrid sloganeering of youth movements like 'Rise up it's time to take Subang for Jesus' endorsed by certain religiously-inclined DAP leaders.
PAS, never one to take its Islamic credentials lightly, has gone and changed its moderate position (of allowing non-Muslims to use the word 'Allah') into one of bizarre word play, which to be honest, characterises most edicts from this religious political party tenuously holding on to the middle ground.
Add to this quagmire, the PAS administration in Kedah have muddied the waters with their usual Islamic preoccupations with regards to how non-Muslims celebrate their festivities. All of which should make right-thinking Malaysians question PAS' commitment to the middle ground, not withstanding the total lack of political finesse of the DAP. Instead of framing this issue for what it really is, one of freedom of speech or expression, what has happened is that the vested religious interest within Umno and Pakatan, have been calling the shots and politicising this as a "simple" issue of constitutionally guaranteed religious freedom. Comedy of errors
It really is a comedy of errors with the Council of Churches of Malaysia (CCM) stating that they intend to use the word 'Allah' in defiance of the royal decree because of their rights enshrined in the constitution. What would have been a credible argument is the one the MCA put forward concerning the judgment on the use of the word 'Allah' that I assumed was the whole point of initiating legal proceedings. Or better yet reconsidered their (Council of Churches) stand to the so-called "compromise" of the 10-point solution as enunciated by Minister in the Prime Minister's Department Idris Jala (right) when this fiasco first broke out all the way back in 2011 with regard to the Bahasa Malaysia/Indonesia bibles and was rejected by the youth division of CCM.
So as far as religious tensions are concerned, notwithstanding the usage of the word 'Allah', the Umno state and the opposition forces in this country had more or less reached an "equitable" solution even if it was only a band-aid solution. So, what exactly is the problem? There are numerous issues that involve non-Muslims that would hopefully be resolved permanently when a new supposedly multi-religious/ethnic coalition comes into power but until then we have to choose our battles wisely and compromise by way of band-aid solutions.
The only reason why we got this 10-point solution was due to the efforts of the opposition led mainly by the DAP. It was the perfect example of political parties chasing the votes of a certain section of a religiously diverse electorate. There were criticism of this 10-point solution but overall it was a clean political victory for the forces of moderation in this country no matter which side of the political divide one belonged to. Then this Christmas, this 'Allah' issue weaseled its way back into the discourse.
A cunning strategist would have used this 10-point solution as a gateway for bringing in other issues by zealously monitoring its implementation or the present regime's commitment to their solution. As it is, like most convenient political tools, it was forgotten in the rush for the next big scandal. Political expediency
The DAP had backtracked earlier, claiming that Lim's statement was meant only for Christians in Sabah and Sarawak, which just goes to show you how political expediency trumps principle and finally after all this horse manure, Pakatan finally puts forward a unified front with Abdul Hadi Awang giving the coalition's final stand on the issue. It would be constructive for Pakatan supporters to remember that Pakatan had already made this stand when the controversy first erupted but all this seems to have been forgotten when the DAP in a foolhardy move decided to pander to the Christian evangelical movement on Christmas.
Not that "freedom of religion" has anything to do with the 'Allah' issue. Partisans, especially DAP apparatchiks, have gone out of their way to give etymological lectures on the word 'Allah' and within those lectures there are enough historical distortions and cherry picking to fool the true believers that their religion (Christianity) is under siege here in Malaysia. Of course Muslims, Christians and Jews have been killing each other (and themselves) for centuries in their God's name but never (as far as I can recall) because of the name of their God.
Of course, the non-Muslims have not had an easy time with the creeping Arabisation instigated by Umno. Moreover, the constant thorn in Umno's side is the fact that Sarawak and Sabah, thanks to the 20-point agreement, have been resisting the Umno-created Islamic hegemony that those in the Peninsular unfortunately have to contend with. In a piece about Nurul Izzah Anwar (right) and the controversy that erupted over her remarks regarding conversion, I commented on the rather queer fact that oppositional types love to define what a "true Muslim" is through their political/religious allegiance lens. We get the same narrative here. A "true Muslim" (1) would not be ignorant of the historical/cultural usage of the word 'Allah' here in Malaysia and (2) would be comfortable enough by non-Muslim usage.
As usual this true Muslim meme, clashes with reality when it comes to the acknowledging the diverse religious imperatives in this country and the compromises that have been made in the name of religious equilibrium.
Umno's outsourced thugs
Meanwhile on Umno's side of the fence (which unfortunately also includes certain factions within PAS), obnoxious outsourced thugs continue the Umno narrative that Muslims (or should that be Malay Muslims) would be confused by the indiscriminate use of the word 'Allah'. What I find contemptible of this ploy is that it is disrespectful to Muslims all over the world. You want to tarnish the reputation of the Islam you are propagating by all means go ahead, but Muslim all over the world are not so easily confused.
They still hold steady to their faith in the face of American bombs. They hold steady to their faith in the face of the brutality that is inflicted on them by their own Muslim regimes. They still hold on to their faith in the face of changing values within the larger culturally diverse communities they immigrate into.
Apparently, the only easily confused Muslims are those living in Malaysia.
We are moving into the final dash of an election that would be a turning point in the history of Malaysia. If you think that "controversies" such as these do not have an effect on voting patterns, you are sorely mistaken. Do not make the mistake of coddling a specific voter demographic because you assume everyone else will fall into line. The opposition, of which the DAP is the most important secular component (or at least it should be), cannot afford such slip-ups. As Saturday's rally confirmed, the opposition in this country is a complex mix of diverse interest united in its goal of changing stewardship of this country.
Amongst a certain section of the electorate, there is this sincere belief that Pakatan with all its contradictions is the best chance this country has. This belief should neither be taken for granted nor be manipulated for shallow divisional interests.
It is no longer amateur hour in oppositional politics. Malaysiakini
Posted: 09 Feb 2013 12:17 AM PST
"Let us not seek to satisfy our thirst for freedom by drinking from the cup of bitterness and hatred." - Martin Luther King Jr.
COMMENT Before I begin, I make no claims of speaking for "the majority". This should be read as a personal anecdote of an opposition supporter who was there to make the numbers, but more importantly - as I have done for all these 'pro-opposition' rallies - to mix with my fellow travellers and listen to their stories. As always, people were willing to talk. In the midst of all the allegations that this was an Anwar Ibrahim tactic to divert attention from some personal scandal or other, a more subtle narrative emerged from the people I spoke to.
Almost all of them were there to show support for Pakatan Rakyat. However, a good many people I spoke to willingly told me that they believed a change was crucial but that they were also sceptical of politics and politicians in general and they were determined to hold Pakatan to a higher standard if the alternative alliance ever claimed Putrajaya. Many, like the university students I spoke to, were there in defiance to authority - something rediscovered amongst young people who are ignorant of the rabble rousing nature of former students turned politicians who hold sway today.
Young women - their faces covered in case they were detected by the authorities - were visibly angry that Umnoputra (their words) children are exposed to 'English' education while they are stuck in a rut with degrees that have no value beyond these shores. One young man said to me in English, "We are here because we want the chains to be cut. We don't want to be chained to anyone." I can understand why the Umno regime so fears a split in the Malay vote. Although I saw a sea of non-Malay faces wherever I went, without a doubt this was a majority Malay uprising at least from walking about in the various meeting points of this rally and then later in Stadium Merdeka.
This should not be of much concern to those of us in the opposition although perhaps it is a good talking point for pro-establishment types. I argued in some of my very first pieces in Malaysiakini that the general election will eventually come down to the Malay vote. Umno knows this very well, which is why it is determined not only to capture the Malay vote but also redefine the Malay demographic with constitutionally-created Malays.
What is relevant in terms of gatherings of these kinds and the Umno propaganda that said gatherings are a threat to peace and stability is that the non-Malays who were there and in large numbers had no fear or concern for their safety with the overwhelming majority of Malays who attended this uprising.
For my part, I would like to thank a few PAS Unit Amal personnel who at various times helped me navigate through the crowds, access places which would have been difficult for a senior citizen to manouevre and (all of them) taking the time to explain the changing nature of PAS to an old man who had no problem prodding them on points he disagreed with. As far as the Royal Malaysian Police (PDRM) is concerned, they have earned the goodwill and respect of the people who attended yesterday's rally. The PDRM were present but allowed the security personnel of the various groups to do their job. I personally witnessed many incidents where the police were helping people get to where they wanted to go.
They projected no malice towards those attending. Some would argue that credit should go to Umno for this and if we can agree that the horrendous manner in which they (the PDRM) behaved in past rallies should be blamed on Umno, then I have no problem crediting Umno with this turn of goodwill from the PDRM. This lays to rest the venomous propaganda that only Umno can maintain the peace when it comes to interracial harmony and returns the power of how we choose to interact with the various communities (with sometimes divergent religious and political beliefs) to the hands of the people or at least the people who chose to participate in this so-called uprising.
But the split in the Malay vote has a deeper meaning. It could also point to a split in the Umno bureaucracy. Again, anecdotally speaking, I met many currently serving and retired Malay civil, military and police personnel who were there because they were dissatisfied at the direction this country was heading. There was also a religious element to some of their grievances, in the sense that they believed that Umno had become decadent and immoral and this had no place in the government. I will refrain from quoting rather seditious comments regarding the royalty.
Disapproval and distain
As I have written before, what Pakatan has managed to do extremely well is harness divergent ideological, racial, social and religious forces and concentrate them on one objective, which is regime change, as is the democratic right of every citizen in this country. There were echoes of past 'people uprisings' be it Bersih, anti-Lynas, reformasi, etc. Some would argue that "hate" for Umno was a powerful motivator, and indeed I sensed from the crowd the disdain they felt towards the current regime. Whenever scandals or certain political personalities were mentioned, the crowd roared in disapproval.
I sincerely hope that this disapproval and disdain for corruption would be reflected back on Pakatan should they ever come into power and find themselves in the same quagmire as Umno and BN. I sincerely hope that this disdain for corruption and political personalities who subvert the noble aims of a people's movement for personal gain and political expediency, is reflected back on Pakatan personalities should they ever indulge in such behaviour. Dr D Jeyakumar, who was there representing PSM, made perhaps one of the more inspiring speeches (and one relevant to the point I am making) not to mention a speech which every Pakatan supporter should take to heart. I reproduce the most important point here:
"Yang ketiga, dan ini penting sekali, selepas kita tawan Putrajaya dan menubuhkan kerajaan baru, kita, rakyat biasa harus meneruskan penglibatan kami dalam proses politik dan pentadbiran.
"Kuasa boleh merosakkan pemimpin kita. Ada ungkapan Inggeris - power corrupts and absolute power corrupts absolutely. Kuasa yang tidak dihadkan oleh proses demokratik boleh meracuni kepimpinan kita. Hanya dengan pemantauan dan teguran daripada rakyat jelata bolehlah kerajaan baru terus telus dan bersih.
"Antara perubahan yang kita harus membawa ke budaya politik negara kita adalah untuk meminta semua calon yang ingin jadi adun atau wakil rakyat untuk berjanji pada pengundi bahawa dia akan memakai posisi dan kuasanya hanya untuk kepentingan rakyat biasa dan bukan untuk menjadikan keluarganya kaya raya.
"Kita tidak halang sesiapa yang mahu jadi kaya tetapi pergilah ke bisnes. Jangan jadi wakil rakyat supaya mahu cari duit."
("Thirdly, and this is the most important, is after we claim Putrajaya and set up a new government, we, the ordinary rakyat ought to continue to involve ourselves in the political and administrative processes. "Power can ruin our leaders. There is an English saying - power corrupts and absolute power corrupts absolutely. Power that is unchecked by the democratic process can poison our leadership. Only with the monitoring and reproach from the ordinary rakyat can the new government continue to be transparent and clean. "Among the changes we need to bring to the political culture in this country is to require all candidates who want to be assemblypersons of MPs to make an oath to the voters that they will use their positions and power only for the interests of the ordinary rakyat, and not to make their families rich.
"We do not stop anyone who wants to become rich, but do that through (your own) business activities. Don't become a people's representative just so you can make money.")
My last walkabout
However, what was evident was the sense of 'hope'. Taking it to the streets was an expression of defiance, but more importantly a goodwill message to all Malaysians. Perhaps this sometimes got lost in translation because of the current partisan climate but anyone attending would have noticed that a sense of belonging far outweighed the rancour that has been a staple in oppositional politics.
On a personal note, this may be my last walkabout. Although I saw many seniors, I truly believe that these kinds of democratic expressions are best suited for the young. We had our chance. We made our country and now the young people have to change it. As a senior citizen, I will confine my expression to the ballot box. I know many seniors who I met are rejuvenated by these gatherings and I wish them the best of luck and more walkabouts in the future.
As for me, as Roger Murtaugh from the movie 'Lethal Weapon' correctly said, "I'm getting too old for this shit." Malaysiakini
Posted: 09 Feb 2013 12:00 AM PST
Groups want stiffer sentences over tiger parts trafficking
4:54PM Feb 8, 2013
today slammed a two-year jail term handed to a Malaysian man over the
country's biggest seizure of illegally trafficked tiger parts as too
short and a "demoralising finale" to the case.Eight tiger skins,
and 22 tiger skulls and bones were discovered at the home of Nor
Shahrizam Nasir in
Posted: 08 Feb 2013 11:22 PM PST
3rd Feb 2013 M-Media
On 10th April 2012, the article "Beef-free Zone" written by Zee Kwat Sein, which insulted Islam and Muslims, was mentioned in page 17 of number 13 of volume 2 of Ayeyarwady Regional (Parliament) Hluttaw's Newsletter. Islamic Religious Affairs Council of Ayeyarwady Region sent an official letter about that article to U San Sint, the Regional Htuttaw's speaker, on 7th January 2013. The letter is mentioned completely below.
Ayeyarwady Region, IRAC
Subject : the issue of Zee Kwat Sein's Beef-free Zone
Reference : page 17 of number 13 of volume 2 of Hluttaw's newsletter
1. In the page of Hluttaw's newsletter referred above, Zee Kwat Sein insulted Islam and Muslims in the "Beef-free Zone" article.
2. In ancient times, Negroid ethnic groups settled in Myanmar (ref:Phyothara's book "to know about Myanmar"). Four major religions practicing in Myanmar today are not this land's origin but merely came from foreign lands.
3. Pathein City was ruled by three consecutive generations of Pathi Kings and Daargaa ( tomb of Muslim saints) in Pharaagyi Gone is historical evidence of those monarchs (ref: history of Shwe Mu Daw Pagoda)
4. Being a beef-free zone is not totally a religious matter. There was no historically authentic proof of implementing such zone in Buddha's time. It is not the state's policy as well as economy too.
5. Solely the responsible persons will know more about the intentions of describing such childish and silly light writing which has no benefit for both the nation and people at all in the Hluttaw's newsletter.
6. In King Min Tone's days, he decided the issue of crown prince Kanaung's underwater mine project, confusing politics with religion,and so Myanmar was badly defeated in English-Myanmar Third War.Consequently, the country was eventually colonized.
7. Today is the very right time to try enthusiastically for the development of the country. Hence, Regional IRAC has emphatically deduced that there has absolutely no merit for any one in such low standard pointless writing under the name of so-called religion or sainthood these days.
8. Islam totally bans interest, alcohol, karaoke bars, massage parlors, prostitution, drug, illegal sex, living together, gambling and playing card in funerals. Whether eating beef or not is just a personal matter and it should be given first priority to take effective action to such problems as saving numerous lives of child laborers from restaurants and girls working in massage parlors and brothels because of their survival more important than the issue of beef eating. (ref: Thantawsint Journal, vol. 1, no. 42, pg- 11)
9. Beef-free zones can affect the country's economy negatively (ref: two "The Mirror" newspapers, 13.13.2012, pg-6 & 30.12.2012, pg-20).
10. The Regional IRAC has suggested that, meaningless writing with no standard which could lead to damage the unity of citizens and harmony among religions should not be mentioned in the Regional Hluttaw's newsletter.
the article "Beef-free Zone" written by Zee Kwat Sein, which insulted Islam and Muslims, number 13 of volume 2 of Ayeyarwady Regional (Parliament) Hluttaw's Newsletter
Posted: 08 Feb 2013 11:13 PM PST
ဘီးလင္းၿမိဳ႕နယ္ ေတာင္စြန္းေက်းရြာတြင္ တရားပြဲအမည္ခံ အဓိကရုဏ္းလွဳံေဆာ္ေရးေဟာၾကားမွဳမ်ား ၁၃ရက္ ဆက္ တိုက္က်င္းပခဲ့ၿပီးေနာက္ အစၥလာမ္ ဘာသာ၀င္မ်ားအေပၚရန္လိုမွဳ ၊ ပဋိပကၡျဖစ္ေပၚေစရန္ အကြက္ခ် ဖန္တီးမွဳ တစ္ရပ္ ျဖစ္ေပၚခဲ့သည္။ " ဇန္န၀ါရီလ မွာ ၉၆၉ မိတ္ဆက္ပြဲကို ဘုန္းႀကီးငါးပါး နဲ႔ က်င္းပတယ္။ အဲဒါၿပီးေနာက္ ေတာင္ စြန္းက လူငယ္ေတြ အဖြဲ႔ဖြဲ႔ၿပီး မြတ္စလင္ ဆိုင္ေတြမွာ ေစ်းမ၀ယ္ေရး ၊ ဆက္ဆံေရး မလုပ္ေရး စတာေတြ ကို လိုက္လံ လႈံ႕ေဆာ္ ပါတယ္။ ဇန္န၀ါရီ ၂၄ရက္ေန႔ကစတင္ၿပီး ၁၃ရက္ဆက္တိုက္ တရားပြဲလုပ္တယ္။ အဲဒီတရားပြဲမွာ သိမ္ဇရပ္က ဆရာ ေတာ္ ဦးပညာ၀ရ က ရခိုင္ကိစၥေတြ ၊ အစၥလာမ္ ဘာသာ နဲ႔ ပတ္သက္လို႔ ဆိုးဆုိး၀ါး၀ါး တုိက္ခုိက္ ေဟာေျပာ ခဲ့တယ္။ " ဟု ေတာင္စြန္းၿမိဳ႕ခံ တစ္ဦးက ေျပာပါသည္။
ယင္းတရားပြဲမ်ား က်င္းပျပဳလုပ္ခဲ့ၿပီးေနာက္ အစၥလာမ္ႏွင့္ ဗုဒၶဘာသာ၀င္မ်ားအၾကား အထင္အျမင္လြဲမွားမွဳ ျဖစ္ေပၚေစရန္ ရည္ရြယ္၍ လုပ္ၾကံဖန္တီးမႈ တစ္ရပ္ျဖစ္ပြား ခဲ့ေၾကာင္းသိရသည္။
"ကုလားဗလီေက်ာင္း အိမ္သာမွာ ဗုဒၶဘာသာ သေကၤတ ၉၆၉ ကို ကုလားဗလီ ေက်ာင္းအိမ္သာ မွာ ရိုင္းရိုင္းစိုင္းစိုင္း ေရးထားတယ္လို႔ ေဖေဖာ္၀ါရီ ၇ ရက္ေန႔မနက္မွာ မမွန္ သတင္းလြင့္တယ္။ ဒီေတာ့ ၿမိဳ႕ခံေတြလည္း စုရံုး ၊စုရံုးျဖစ္ကုန္ၾက တယ္။ တကယ္ ေတာ့ အဲဒီစာကို ဗလီ မဒ္ရဆာ ေက်ာင္းအိမ္သာမွာ ေရးထား တာမဟုတ္ပဲ ဗလီနားက မြတ္စလင္ အိမ္ တစ္အိမ္ရဲ႕႔ အိမ္သာမွာ ေရးထားတာကို ေတြ႕ တယ္။ ဒါနဲ႔ ရဲေတြက အဲဒါကို ဓါတ္ပံုရိုက္ ၊ မွတ္တမ္း တင္ၿပီး အိမ္ပိုင္ရွင္ မြတ္စလင္ေကာင္ေလး ကိုေခၚစစ္တယ္။ ေနာက္ ေတာ့ ျပန္လြတ္ေပးလိုက္တယ္။ မြတ္စလင္ ေကာင္ေလးက အဲဒါကို သူလုပ္တာမဟုတ္ ဘူး။ အဲဒီစာကို ေတြ႕ တာက လည္း မနက္ အေစာႀကီး ဗုဒၶ ဘာသာေကာင္ေလး တစ္ေယာက္ ေတြ႕ တာပါ။ ၿမိဳ႕ခံ ေတြကေတာ့ မြတ္စလင္ နဲ႔ ဗုဒၶ ဘာသာအၾကား ပဋိပကၡျဖစ္္ေအာင္ ဒီလိုမ်ိဳး အကြက္ခ်စီစဥ္တာဆိုတာ သိ ေနၾကတယ္။ "ဟု ၄င္းၿမိဳ႕ခံ ကေျပာပါသည္။
ၿပီးခဲ့သည္႔ ၂၀၁၂ ႏွစ္ တန္ေဆာင္တိုင္လၿပည္႔ေနတြင္လည္း ဘီးလင္းၿမိဳ႕နယ္ ႏွင္းပုလဲေက်းရြာတြင္ အလားတူ မမွန္ သတင္း ထုတ္လြင့္မွဳ တစ္ရပ္ျဖစ္ပြားခဲ့သည္။ ဘုန္းေတာ္ႀကီးေက်ာင္းတြင္ ဆြမ္းဘုန္းရန္ စီစဥ္ထားေသာ အိုးခြက္ပန္းကန္ မ်ားကို မြတ္စလင္တစ္ဦးမွ ပစ္ခြဲသြားသည္ဟု လုပ္ၾကံသတင္းလြင့္ခဲ့သည္။ ယင္းကိစၥအား ႏွင္းပုလဲ ႏွင့္ ဘီးလင္း အေျခစိုက္ နယ္ေျမခံ ရဲတပ္ဖြဲ႔မွ အခ်ိန္မွီေျဖရွင္းေပးခဲ့ရေၾကာင္းသိရသည္။
Posted: 09 Feb 2013 01:33 AM PST
SSatu rakaman video mesyuarat untuk membincangkan huru-hara ketika ceramah Anak di Felda Sungai Tengi, Hulu Selangor pada 4 Februari lalu tersebar di internet.
Rakaman 15 minit itu dimuat naik ke Youtube dengan tajuk "Perancangan jahat 'Umno Untuk Serang Ceramah ANAK di Felda Sungai Tengi Terbongkar'.
Ia memaparkan penerangan pengerusi mesyuarat yang dipercayai Pengurus Felda Sungai Tengi, berhubung tindakan menghalang ceramah Presiden Anak, Mazlan Aliman.
Antara lain, pengerusi mesyuarat tersebut berkata tindakan itu direstui pegawai polis.
"Gerak kerja kita, kalau dia (Mazlan) terlepas juga masuk sepertimana pegawai polis cakap tadi, kita buat seolah-olah macam membantah lah, kita buat huru hara,""Tapi jangan bergaduh, saya minta sangat lah jangan bergaduh..."
Kenyataan itu segera disampuk salah seorang daripada mereka yang berkata "Kalau dah huru hara bergaduh jugak..." dan disambut ketawa mereka yang berada di situ.
Pengerusi Felda berkenaan kemudian menyebut arahan itu datang dari pegawai Polis Daerah Kuala Kubu Baru.
"Kalau dia buat ceramah tu kita buat bising lah, Itu yang pegawai polis daerah Kuala Kubu Baru, pesan kat saya tadi," katanya dipetik dalam rakaman itu sambil menambah ia dilakukan dengan tujuan membatalkan program tersebut.
Dalam pada itu maklumat di Facebook menyatakan mesyuarat itu dihadiri pengurusan Felda Sungai Tengi, Perkasa, Umno, Seranta dan Majlis Belia Felda.
Pada 4 Februari lalu, Mazlan Aliman dilapor diserang kumpulan didalangi Umno ketika hendak memulakan ucapan di Felda Sungai Tengi, Hulu Selangor.
Mazlan berkata kira-kira 100 samseng membaling botol, kerusi, kun dan pelbagai objek lain. Malah mereka juga menumbuk dan menendang Unit amal Pas.
Oleh kerana samseng-samseng berkenaan enggan beredar dan bimbang keselamatan hadirin, ceramah itu kemudian di batalkan.
Posted: 09 Feb 2013 05:01 AM PST
I am so blessed to have had lovely Chinese friends throughout the years..we never felt we were of different races and embraced different religions.
We just felt good and comfortable with each other.
Yesterday while having noodles at Old Town, I said to my daughter.."agaknya kita ni ada Chinese blood..suka betul makan noodles.."
Hn kata.."Baba ada Chinese blood kan?"
I replied.."Yeah..we all have.. Arwah nenek kata kita campur habis..semua ada..ancestors kita Melayu, Cina, India, Bugis, Siam.."
Lain2 I cannot remember..^_^
My youngest sis R is happily married to a Chinese Muslim convert..
They have 4 doting children..3 young daughters and a son.
Wan is the eldest yet he sometimes feel he's being bullied by the adik2..hihi..
My very senior kakak was once married to a high ranking army Colonel..
They were together only for a short while..and then got divorced.
It has been so many years since.
My nephew now have a daughter and 3 boys..but they never knew the existence their Chinese grandfather..after this posting I think they will..finally..
I know I shouldn't mention this but I am going to do so..
Where ever you are..as I remembered you..then, Colonel General Khoo Cheng Teng @ Khoosairy..a handsome Chinese..tall, suave and regal looking.
*colonel jer or colonel general yea..lupa dah..ada leftenan tak depan the Colonel?*
He has most probably retired by now.
"Sir?! You have now 4 amazing grandchildren through your eldest Melayu son..
An adorable lot..hyperactive jugak oi..macam askar dalam combat..*in the genes kot*..
I wish you and your family A Happy And Prosperous Chinese New Year..
Hopefully you are still alive and well (sorry for the bluntness)..if not, may your other children know that they have a half Malay half Chinese older brother with 4 kids.
You don't want to meet your grandchildren ker?"
Ngah..jangan marah..your grandchildren ada Chinese blood.
They will forever be partly Chinese and we are proud of them loads.
It's time for them to get to know their Ah Kong/ Ah Gong.. i.e. if he's still around.
R and her family are very close to her hubby's family.
They celebrate CNY together and the grandparents love their kids so very much.
Even though they're Muslims, they always gather together yearly for the 'makan besar' in ushering the auspicious Chinese New Year.
I heard her in-laws always make sure their food are makanan halal.
We thus share the joy of the Malaysian Chinese in ushering the year of the water snake..
And Happy Chinese New Year to everybody Chinese all over the globe.
Gong Xi Gong Xi Gong Xi ne ya..^_^
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