One of the most stupid suggestions in recent times has come from Home Ministry. Its deputy minister, Tan Chai Ho, said the government may deploy army reserve troops to help the country's undermanned police force fight a wave of violent street crime.
Thank goodness deputy police chief Musa Hassan has the commonsense to decline that, diplomatically averring that the level of crime does not warrant the deployment of reserve soldiers.
Today I read that DPM Najib has also agreed, stating that the Territorial Army has other duties to attend to, such as border surveillance and forming the border brigade.
He said: “It is quite sufficient to reactivate the Rukun Tetangga and integrate it with police patrolling and anti-drug activities.”
Soldiers are part of a war machines, trained to attack, destroy and kill. They aren’t equipped with knowledge of civil laws, thus are not suitable to be deployed for civil policing. How in the bloody hell has the Home Ministry come up with such a stupid dangerous idea?
When soldiers and civilian population come into contact, the possibility of antagonistic interaction cannot be ruled out. With one party designed for war and armed with deadly weapons, but without knowledge of civil laws and rights, that’s just asking for bloody big trouble.
That was why in the old days, the Police Field Force (PFF) was formed. The para-military force was nothing more than police in military uniform assigned to military duties, but equipped with understanding of the duties of a civil police force.
The idea then was for the army to engage with the communist insurgents in the jungle, far away from civilian population. But should the insurgents run from the army into a 'new village'. and hide among its civilian population, the army was not allowed to enter the hamlet for all the reasons mentioned earlier.
It would have been disastrous for the government if that happened (a few times it did), because the authority understandably feared the worst, of soldiers being heavy-handed and inadvertently treating civilians like the enemy.
That was/is what have been happening in Iraq. See how the Iraqis have been treated by the American soldiers!
In the 'new village' scenario I mentioned, the old Malaysian anti-insurgency strategy was for the soldiers in hot pursuit to cordon off the village, while the PFF (the police) moved in among the civilians in the village in order to deal with the insurgents hiding there. This was part of the old 'hearts & minds' strategy, something that's beyond the capacity of the American military to understand, let alone adopt.
Our old days’ leaders knew their stuff. Now, we have instead a heap of sh*tty nonsense from the current crop of so-called leaders.
We better pray this stupid idea is killed off (thank goodness it is now, by DPM - I wrote this posting last night; Najib spoke today) before some innocent civilian gets killed, courtesy of the Home Ministry.