In 2007 I posted Malay 'sacrifice', Chinese 'sacrifice' where I wrote (extracts):
Their [UMNO] favourite whipping boy has been (usually) the Chinese Malaysians - to them, a suspicious group of Non’s who still need to prove their Malaysian credentials despite 50 years of citizenship and more than 200 years of domicile. And UMNO leaders had/have thus far done very little or even nothing to correct that impression. […]
Patriotism - remember this dangerous word? Samuel Johnson instructed that 'Patriotism is the refuge of the scoundrel' while Oscar Wilde sneered at it as '... the virtue of the vicious'.
But Aldous Huxley said of it best:
"One of the great attractions of patriotism - it fulfills our worst wishes. In the person of our nation we are able, vicariously, to bully and cheat. Bully and cheat, what's more, with a feeling that we are profoundly virtuous." […]
And indeed on 09 Nov 2010, predictably as to be expected for UMNO ‘patriots’, Defence Minister Zahid Hamidi stated in response to a question in Parliament that the low number of Chinese and Indian recruits in the military could be due to the Chinese and Indians [being] 'not patriotic enough'.
Zahid Hamidi, once a very close ally of Anwar Ibrahim and the man who accused Dr Mahathir of corruption and cronyism in an apparent impatient move by the Anwar faction in UMNO to nudge then-PM Dr M out for Anwar’s final ascendancy to the PM’s post, but who has since abandoned his allegiance to Anwar to be allied to Najib, is hardly an appropriate person to talk about patriotism or loyalty. But Zahid is certainly the very model of treachery in UMNO or, if one really wants to be kind to him, a mercenary unprincipled opportunist.
The reality is Malays and others, whether Chinese, Indians, Sabahans, Sarawakians or Eurasians, join the Arm Forces not because of patriotism [puhleeeze lah], but as a career or job opportunity. A number of my uncles were in the Malaysian Armed Forces because of the (initially perceived) career prospects. They have never denied the enjoyment of their jobs as military officers. They left because they wanted something more than just holding the rank of captain or major until they retire. Some other Chinese and Indians stayed back, quite contented at being that. It was not a bad life if one was prepared to remain at the middle ranks (staff sergeants, warrant officers, majors, lieutenant colonels].
But trust Zahid Hamidi to take a cheap uninformed shot at the non-Malays as would any wannabe ethnic hero in UMNO. I suppose it’s good for his ethnocentric credentials during UMNO party elections ... unless of course he's completely ignorant about the armed forces, for all the advantage of his ministerial position or the academic doctoral title he claims as his own.
In my above 2007 post, I continued:
And just where were these young punks [people like Zahid Hamidi] when Chinese servicemen were serving the nation on the fields of combat, and recognized for their sacrifice (the real type) by being awarded Malaysia’s highest gallantry honour, the Seri Pahlawan Gagah Perkasa (SP)* – people like Superintendent Paul Kiong and Deputy Superintendent Sia Boon Chee, whom the nation owes incredible debts for their sheer and unsurpassed bravery in infiltrating and living for years with the communist terrorists in order to break the insurgents apart.
Then there were those awarded the Pingat Gagah Berani (PGB)* - the late Lt Choo Yoke Boo (awarded posthumously), late Lt Chang Tatt Min (awarded posthumously) of the RMAF, and 2nd Lt David Fu Chee Ming of the Rangers.
* Indian Malaysians had also been awarded the SP and PGB for combat
This was the citation for David Fu. He was the Platoon Commander of 8th Platoon of C Company, 4th Battalion Royal Rangers. He was tasked and placed in the Tanah Hitam area of Perak to track and destroy the enemy in his sector of operation.
On the 27th August 1970, his platoon of 24 men made contact with a group of about 70 enemy combatants. The enemy unknowingly had entered his sector. Thus started a heavy and intensive battle lasting 7 hours. Under his unwavering leadership, the men fought on, successfully killed 4 of the enemy. His patrol did not suffer any casualties.
For his outstanding gallantry and bravery in the finest traditions of the Ranger Corps he was bestowed with the Pingat Gagah Berani, by the King. He left after exemplary service as a Captain.
But alas, the Chinese can continuing ‘proving’ themselves for the next 500 years, but will never achieve acceptance by UMNO …
… for one simple reason ...
The Chinese must continue to serve UMNO as its whipping boy so that its leaders or wannabe leaders can use the fabricated threat, questionable loyalty and insinuated ingratitude of Chinese as convenient mounting steps to the top of their party.
In this regard, maybe one day in the future, 500 years from now, the Chinese Malaysians may collectively be awarded the Seri Pahlawan Gagah Perkasa for their ‘sacrifice’ to the well-being of [past] UMNO leaders ...
… but then, shall still be required to prove their ‘loyalty’ … as the [UMNO greed requiring Chinese] 'sacrifice' never ends.
In fact, one of my granduncles, a police special branch person, was assassinated by the MCP. We have never demanded recognition of his 'patriotism' or go around boasting of his duty to the nation, because his being in the Special Branch was a career path he voluntarily chose, and with it came both the career prospects and consequences.
Admittedly it was less safe and most certainly less well-rewarding than that for a Defence Minister.