Tuesday, July 31, 2007

Goblok to Golek - a letter to the minister

Dodgee Creative Con-Sultan Solutions
12, Jalan Bodek
Taman Kamunting
Pulau Pinang

Yang Berhormat
Datuk Yusuf Go-Bells
Kementerian Propaganda Anti-Barat


I refer to the timely and fatherly warning your ministry has issued to the public, advising them not to listen to dangerous people who have no qualms about becoming the tools of foreign nations to damage our country, including the economy and national unity.

Indeed by soliciting the unsolicited support of the Paris-based Reporters Without Borders (RSF), those bloggers are supporting foreign elements bent on destroying our beloved country. Good heavens, soon we could even be having soufflé instead of otak otak. It goes to show we cannot be too complacent even with unemployed female liars who constitute 80% of Malaysian bloggers.

Once again, we are grateful for your benevolent and appropriate guidance.

Indeed I have been appalled by the unnecessary, libellous and distorted reporting on one brave former minister (of some sort or state) who knew ... er ... exactly what he was reporting to the police about those femino-nazi bloggers.

I have often come across such negative information from that insidious online news portal called malaysiakini. Oh, I can assure you, Datuk, I do not read the provocative malaysiakini at all.

It was one of my shop assistants (female, as to be expected) who kept feeding me with such insidious news. No doubt she was skiving from her duties (as to be expected of a female) to surf the Internet. I would not be surprised at all if she is one of those lying female bloggers. Well, it will not be long before she acquires the third qualification – unemployment.

Anyway, I adore your ‘goblok’ word to describe those idiotic bloggers.

As you may probably be aware, Datuk, I believe we can take that term further. As a student of the Indonesian language, I am convinced the ‘goblok’ can be now adjusted (just by changing a couple of letters) to come out as ‘golek’.

In Indonesia, ‘golek’ means a wooden rod-puppet used in the traditional Indonesian wayang. I bet you must be as excited as I am at the possibilities that such ‘puppets’ can offer to your ministry’s program.

This is an example of how my Dodgee Creative Con-Sultan Solutions can make exceptional con-sultan-cy advice available to your ministry .

When I was doing con-sultan-cy work in Indonesia, I improved the image of the Indonesian equivalent of our Anti Anti Corruption Agency (ACA). Unlike us, the Indonesian authority had an image problem on issues of graft. I felt sorry for them as they are not as blessed as us in enjoying a very sneaky squeaky clean country.

As you are familiar, nay, very fluent with Indonesian terms you would be aware of the Indonesian acronym for graft or corruption, namely ‘pungli’ which of course we both know is derived from the merging of two words, ‘pungutan liar’.

I recommended to the Indonesian ACA a program of anti-corruption exercise, a complete package of activities designated as Anti Pungli Operasi Wilayah or 'Regional Operations on Anti-Corruption'.

As the Indonesians love their singkatan (acronyms) so much I also suggested that the designated exercise be known by the catchy acronym of ANGPOW.

The anti-graft commanders and business sector were delighted with ANGPOW though the Indonesian NGOs were furious. I believe the last was just jealous that the con-sultan-cy went to a Malaysian firm, namely my Dodgee Creative Con-Sultan Solutions.

I await Datuk’s kind evaluation of Dodgee Creative Con-Sultan Solutions' proposal to develop your ministry’s strategy to convert those 'goblok' bloggers into 'golek' bloggers.

Malaysia GoBlokleh!

Yang benar

Dodgee Dimsum

p/s apart from my Dodgee Creative Con-Sultan Solutions, I also have my other company Inspired Dodgee Intuitive Organised Team (IDIOT) which offers administrative support services, specialising in making police reports on erring people, such as those 'goblok' bloggers on behalf of civic-conscious VVIPs. A full portfolio will be build up on each trouble maker for any former minster to use should a police report be necessary.

The Yum-Cha Chronicles:
May 13 Book - a letter to the minister
Apology - A letter to the minister
Bloggers - A letter to the ministry

Corruption allegations - AG more like Defence Attorney?

Yesterday, we followed a malaysiakini news report that the Attorney General Gani Patail not only cleared both IGP and the former ACA boss of corruption allegations – yes, a la the Shakespearean ‘in one fell swoop’ or 'in one fierce, sudden onslaught' ;-) - but also ordered the ACA to close the probe into allegations that IGP Musa Hassan took RM2 million in bribe to release three criminal suspects held under the Emergency Ordinance.

I then posted
We're a 'clean' nation where I asked how Gani, who's only the AG, has the authority, and indeed the audacity, to publicly order the ACA to close the probe into the
allegations surrounding the IGP Musa Hassan.

I asked because I thought the ACA reports only to the PM!

The problem with Bolehland is that ever since Dr Mahathir left, one at times isn't quite sure who's in charge. Recently we had the DPM saying the government wasn't clamping down on bloggers while the ruling party's chief head kicker said it was, and with all the force of the power it has.

And during the Squatgate scandal we have the then Deputy IGP (now IGP) contradicting the DPM. As for the establishment of IPCMC, the former IGP had the temerity to undermine the PM's promise and authority by going directly to the UMNO MPs to warn that the Police couldn't promise the 'usual' support for them if they didn't reject the IPCMC.

For more on how the former Deputy IGP, now IGP, had ignored his policy masters, read my letter to malaysiakini titled Police moving to prevent more exposés, and my previous posting How Powerful is the Deputy IGP?

Anyway, I also asked, would stopping an investigation imply that there was in fact an ongoing investigation at the time Gani gave the 'cease and desist' order? If so, my question is, why stop it? Why not let it run its course. Gani's job as the AG is to assess whether there is sufficient evidence to bring the case to court - but most certainly not to stop the ACA's investigation.

Last evening
malaysiakini reported that Mohamad Ramli Abdul Manan, a former Sabah ACA chief who whistle-blew on the alleged corruption and alleged sexual abuse committed by the former ACA boss, stated the AG failed to investigate the claims thoroughly.

In fact Mohd Ramli went as far as to say
“Gani and Zulkipli are buddies. Gani should not make the decision.”

He had already
pointed out in March that Abdul Gani should not be investigating Zulkipli’s case as they had been close friends while serving in Sabah.

If Ramli's assertion is true, then there has been a 'conflict of interest' in Gani's assessment of the corruption allegations against Zulkipli. This is not to say that Gani was incorrect, but in a fully transparent and accountable democracy, a situation of perceived (only perceived and not necessarily real) 'conflict of interest' would automatically taint the assessment or evaluation.

Surely the AG as the nation’s No 1 law officer would and should be aware of such an procedural pitfall, but alas, apparently NOT!

Then Mohd Ramli said what I have been waiting to be clarified, that the AG has no power in law to direct an investigation agency to close a particular investigation.

As a sweet lady would say:
As Humpty Dumpty would say: “Ayoyo!”
As Penangites would say
“K--- neen nair!”
As bloggers would say
As the PM would say

Ramli said:
“You must ask the question, where is the law which says that Gani as AG and public prosecutor can direct an investigation agency to close a particular investigation?”

Precisely ... which has been my query all along – mind you, only as a confused ignorant goblok-ish citizen

Ramli added:
“Under Section 376 of the Criminal Procedure Code, the AG - the public prosecutor - has control and direction only of all criminal prosecutions and proceedings in court. He decides whether to prosecute or not to prosecute an offender.”

... and most certainly he would not have any say in what the ACA does, especially with an ongoing investigation. And Good Lord, he IS the nation’s No 1 law officer - well, isn’t he?

Finally, Ramli put another twist to the screwdriver he has shafted into Gani Patail. He also claimed that AG had acted more like (former ACA boss) Zulkipli’s defense counsel than a public prosecutor, when the AG
revealed the outcome of the investigations last Saturday.

Ramli sneered:
“Gani was talking more like a defence attorney for Zul in saying that he had managed to explain how he had acquired all these properties. He was not talking like a public prosecutor.”

Good lord (again), no, it can’t be – not after the accusation of ‘conflict of interest’. Besides, aren't we living in a 'clean' nation?

Well, are we?

Monday, July 30, 2007

Jeff Ooi - right move from Gerakan to DAP?

malaysiakini has finally reported that Jeff Ooi, well known blogger of Screenshots, has left the Gerakan Party for DAP.

There’s no doubt that the DAP has been scouting for fresh new talents to replace an older generation of party stalwarts, criticised by many as too old or too obsessively clinging on to (party) power (but forgetting that this old generation has rendered and still is rendering sterling services).

Jeff Ooi has been one of the new talents eyeballed by DAP as someone who has a reasonably high profile, especially among the Internet generation.

While the news has confirmed what everyone savvy with the blogosphere knew for quite a while, of Jeff’s new political colours (well, at least his intention if not the actual commitment), I wonder whether his shift from the Gerakan Party has anything to do with the departure of his mentor, Lim Keng Yaik?

In other words, did Jeff, who has political proclivities and indeed ambitions, sense that with Lim’s departure the likelihood of him being selected by the Gerakan as a candidate for election has become rather remote?

Undoubtedly the attractive offer of a seat by the DAP (thus far, none from the Gerakan) must have convinced Jeff that it’s decision time, to make the big step across to an opposition party.

I suspect that Jeff must have wanted to work from within the BN (via Gerakan) to change the culture, but alas, he must have found that almost impossible with a dominant UMNO who has its own agenda, and especially more so now after Uncle Lim had announced his retirement.

Or, perhaps he now feels he can best continue his struggle (sometimes I am not too sure what that is, though Jeff is big on public governance and consumerism on certain aspects) as a DAP member.

Many politicians have turned bloggers, but Jeff would probably be the first, if not, then among the first, to be a blogger turned politician.

malaysiakini has touted him as the most influential blogger in Malaysia, but many including Jeff himself would agree the crown has long since been won by RPK of Malaysia-Today.

But nonetheless he is still a very influential blogger. The question must be: will he continue to have the same following, many of whom are supporters of other parties like PAS, PKR and the BN? And more importantly, can he translate the huge Net following into votes for himself in the next general election?

We're a 'clean' nation

“In one fell-swoop”

Wow, those were the very words used by malaysiakini when it described how our nation's No 1 legal officer, dear Attorney-General (AG) Abdul Gani Patail, cleared both former ACA chief Zulkifli Mat Noor and IGP Musa Hassan of corruption.

The phrase ‘one fell swoop’ was first recorded by Shakespeare in Macbeth (Act 4): when Macduff received news that his entire family was murdered, and cried out in sheer disbelief:

All my pretty ones?
Did you say all? O hell-kite! All?
What, all my pretty chickens and their dam
At one fell swoop?

BTW, the word 'fell', originated from Old French 'fel', which means 'cruel; barbarous; fierce [etc]' as in the example
'While we devise fell tortures for thy faults ...'.

The word 'felon' (person guilty of a serious crime) is also derived from it.

So, 'one fell swoop' would mean 'one fierce, sudden onslaught'!

And so it was to us, in one ... er ... fell swoop, or if we take the Shakespearean meaning as we learnt today, 'one fierce, sudden onslaught' the AG put the question of corruption hanging over the heads of the former ACA boss and the current IGP to rest – both are now officially as clean as a whistle, as to be expected of our exemplary officers.

The AG went yadda yadda on his reason for clearing both government officers - conclusion: there's no case for them to answer.

The allegation against the No 1 policeman in the nation was in fact initiated by Deputy Internal Security Minister Johari Baharum who himself was also investigated by the ACA for corruption earlier but has since been cleared by the AG.

It's clear that we are a ‘clean’ nation if not anything. I always feel like that after walking out of a good turkish-bath – very ‘clean’ I mean. In fact, my best pal when I was working in a place in KL - let's call him Aneh - used to declare to me each time we exited the bath "kaytee, we may not be the cleverest, richest, handsomest blokes in the world, but right now we are certainly the cleanest!" - and an Amen to his wisdom on superlatives.

However, spoilsport strait-laced straightforward Lim Guan Eng, the DAP secretary-general, asked Abdul Gani Patail to make public the investigation papers into both Zulkifli and Musa Hassan to prove that a thorough probe was conducted in accordance with the principles of integrity, transparency and accountability. Hmmm!?

Meanwhile, the Star Online reported that
PM AAB wants a stop to comments on these two corruption cases.

Apart from expressing relief that the two had been cleared of allegations of corruption and criminal misconduct or abuse of power, he wants the matter laid to rest as there was no evidence to implicate them.

In fact he commented that it’s now apparent the reports made against them were bullsh*t – OK, he didn’t exactly use the ‘bull’ word but I thought it would endow the admonishment with more spice ;-)

However, not that I would dare go against the PM’s advice, I must attempt to clear one thing that confuses me.

You see, yesterday, Gani ordered ACA to close the probe into the
allegations that IGP Musa Hassan took RM2 million in bribe to release three criminal suspects held under the Emergency Ordinance. Originally Johari Baharum was the one accused of releasing those criminals for RM5 million.

Don't worry about the release of the three criminal suspects, but can the AG order the ACA to stop an investigation? I thought the ACA reports directly to the PM?

No doubt Gani is the nation’s No 1 law officer, but protocol wise, can he order the ACA around. Who is really in charge of the ACA?
This is the confusing question that a layperson like me likes to know.

And would stopping an investigation imply that there was an ongoing investigation at the time Gani gave the 'cease and desist' order? If so, my question is, why stop it?

Hah, the answer to my question was provided by a malaysiakini report which said that Gani averred the investigation via witnesses and relevant documents have nothing to link Musa to the allegation.

If that has been the case it is only logical a curious citizen would want to ask, why then was the investigation still going on (if my
goblok query has any purchase), before Gani gave the instruction to the ACA to stop the investigations?

Again a poor confused citizen asks: what is the reporting setup of the ACA, and may the AG order the ACA to stop an investigation?

Sunday, July 29, 2007

Life & friendship

Life is kinda farnee
Bright one day like
A veli veli shiny
Polished mirror
Tho' tomollow may c
Greasy thumbprints
Onli to be wiped away

As useless graffiti

Life is only what
We make of it
Yar lor, c-ing

Thro’, h
New challenges
New dee-lek-siun
Some lousy lows

But best with pals

Life can be veli cruel
Inexplicable moody
As a quirky tempest
Smashing to bits
Painstakingly erected
Foundations & truss
Of friendship, alas
No further use liao

Life is great when
You feel so sian one
A pengyu is by thee
Like a mountain
Unmoved by tsunami
Of vogue-ish whims
Then no nid 4 soli lor
Just nighty nite nite

Friday, July 27, 2007

Merdeka & Malay Communists

35 days to ‘Merdeka’.

In the Malay language of Malaysia, 'Merdeka', a word borrowed from Sanskrit, means ‘free’ or ‘independent’.

The image that Malaysians have when this word ‘Merdeka’ is mentioned would be that of our first prime minister, Tengku Abdul Rahman proclaiming our nation’s independence from British colonial rule on 31 August 1957.

Well, perhaps only Peninsula Malaysians because Sarawakians and Sabahans are a bit uptight about the date of 31 August 1957.

Malaya, Sabah, Sarawak and Singapore officially merged and became Malaysia only on 6 September 1963. The Tengku had planned for 31 August for the official creation of Malaysia but due to a (I think) legislative obstacle, the actual date was delayed by a week. But he insisted that Malaysia Day celebrations be conducted on the originally planned date, which is still a sore point with Malaysians on the other side of the pond.

While the Tengku didn’t exactly invent the word, he would be the man most associated with ‘Merdeka’. Anyway that’s what I thought too, until today.

I read in malaysiakini that communist veteran Abdullah CD has released his second instalment of his memoirs.

Look, no need to rush to get it as it’s not Chin Peng’s so UMNO is unlikely to call for its ban. In this regard I am reminded of my post Why isn't 'Last Communist' a Malay? published last year. I then wrote (relevant extract):

Malaysian Film Producers Association president Ruhani Abdul Rahman expressed her shock and disappointment over Amir’s decision not to promote the dignity and struggle of nationalistic heroes. She asked: “Are there no Malay heroes that Amir can promote (angkat) through his documentary?”

Somehow Ruhani missed the point that it’s a musical doco on a man who fought against the government of Malaysia, unless she had meant that Amir should have depicted (glorified?)
Rashid Maidin instead, because Rashid being a Malay could be considered a Malaysian ‘hero’?

Hah! Now we come to the real reason. Berita Harian’s assistant entertainment editor, Akmal Abdullah, questioned the scheduled screening of the movie in Kuala Lumpur and Penang, which he described as Chinese majority areas. Hellooooo, I thought most of the people in KL and Penang are Malaysians?

Akmal said: “We hope that after this, Amir and film makers from the new generation of Malays, will pay more attention to the struggles of heroes from their own race...”

“… from their own race …” Doesn’t that say it all as to why Berita Harian had sabotaged the screening of the film. And in the eyes of Akmal, Amir as a Malay has been a disappointment. I reckon Amir should have depicted the top Malay communist, No 2 in the CPM, Rashid Maidin. Amir might have just got away with it. He should heed the clarion call of Negara, Bangsa dan Agama [Nation, Race & Religion]

But good ole Amir socked back, saying Berita Harian is a
culturally chauvinistic newspaper, and its central objection to his film was that Chin Peng is an ethnic Chinese.

Perhaps that may explain why former communists who are Malays have been allowed to settle down in Malaysia or move in and out freely, while Chin Peng (or Ong Boon Hua) is still considered a threat to national security.

Hmmm, maybe UMNO fears this octogenarian as I posted in Tremble - Last Communist Cometh!

Oh, I digress. Back on track – Abdullah CD’s memoirs titled Penaja dan Pemimpin Regiment Ke-10 talks about the origin and operations of guerilla warfare of the 12-year anti-communist ‘Emergency’ from the perspective of a communist veteran of ethnic Malay background. He led the all-Malay 10th Regiment of the communists’ Malayan People’s National Liberation Army (MNLA).

malaysiakini said that “in the memoirs, Abdullah CD reveals that the communist attack on the police station in Johor’s Bukit Kepong on Feb 23, 1950 was led by Mat Indera who was later captured and sentenced to death by hanging.”

It’s a valuable addition to our nation’s history, and an appropriate read for this 50th anniversary of our nation. Abdullah CD lived with his wife Suriani Abdullah nee Eng Ming Ching in Thailand.

On the same issue of the Malay Left, retired UKM historian Dr Mohamad Salleh Lamry also revealed in his historical study Gerakan Kiri Melayu Dalam Perjuangan Kemerdekaan that the late former deputy premier Ghafar Baba had privately met Abdullah CD in a hotel in southern Thailand in 2003 ‘to reminisce’.

Apparently before joining UMNO, where sadly in his twilight years of his political career, he was humiliated by a certain ‘parachutist’, Ghafar was closely associated with the leftwing of the Malay nationalists in the Parti Kebangsaan Melayu Malaya (PKMM) who worked with the communists in a broad anti-colonial united front in the period of 1946-1948.

The slogan Merdeka! was first used by PKMM.

Thursday, July 26, 2007

Then Mat Rempit, now Cyber-troopers

I am glad that Malaysia’s most influential blogger, RPK (sorry Jeff) has been allowed to leave the police station where he underwent 8 blooming hours of interrogation.

malaysiakini reported him advising his visitors to be more responsible when leaving comments on his blog. Their comments could well be stuff that under the Sedition Act could land him (RPK) in jail.

malaysiakini said that the Sedition Act is notoriously broad and vague in its references to sedition and leaves undefined such subjective terms as ‘hatred’ (a term I have heard often on my blog with regards to my posts on de facto leader) and ‘discontent’ (whatever this means within the context of sedition, but I would feel discontent when I don’t get any ... er ... char koay teow of course - what were you thinking?)

The vagueness of those definitions could mean trouble for char koay teow sellers if I ever become Minister of Security. It’s not unlike my auntie’s rules of mahjong – she would made them up as the game progressed, and by strange coincidence, those new rules would always benefit only her.

Yes, keep the Sedition Act deliberately vague so that when the net needs to be cast, the police would get more rather than less. And remember, depending on those vague definitions, City Hall could use the act to punish the victim ... er ... I mean ... the guilty by up to three years in prison and fines.

But look, don’t give RPK any grief, ok?

However, RPK admitted and indeed accused UMNO of setting up a special team of 'cybertroopers' under Sports and Youth Minister Azalina Othman to ‘compromise’ troublesome bloggers, meaning bloggers who opposed UMNO.

Sheeesh, Mat Rempit then, Cybertroopers now, so what's next?

The Cybertroopers would be tasked to leave incriminating comments on blogs like RPK's to 'compromise' the blog owner as having violated the Sedition Act. It’s not as much fun as pre-cyber days, when ‘compromising’ positions were more ... er .. interestingly compromising!

RPK said of the cybertroopers: "There are about 25 of them, paid RM2,750 a month to raid and invade malaysia-today.net. They flood my website with about 500 to 600 unwanted and sensitive comments daily and I lose sleep every night cleaning this mess up by deleting them from my site."

Hmmm, I doubt they would pay heed to RPK’s appeal to visitors to his blog to be more responsible.

But Sports and Youth Minister Azalina Othman is the Komandant of Kompani Kacau?

Will cyber-sabotaging then be listed as a Malaysian sport?

KTemoc predicts November General Election

OK, malaysiakini tells us that DPM Najib told heads of BN component parties to prepare for the long awaited general election early next year.

Strange that a DPM was given the task of revealing this when the meeting could have waited a few more days for the PM to return ..... ah, well ...

malaysiakini claimed its sources said, of course on the usual condition of anonymity, that those BN kepala’s were asked about their parties’ preparedness to contest the general election.

All said - OK Boss, no sweat, almost there liao.

Najib also told them that a BN convention would be held towards the end of this year, just before the general election is called, to portray the ruling coalition’s unity and strength.

Looks like the BN (and not the government) will hijack the nation’s 50th Merdeka celebration. Najib wants BN parties to lead the celebrations to “remind people that it was the BN (formerly Alliance) parties that won us independence from the British”.

So the BN will hold a big bash at Dataran Merdeka in Kuala Lumpur on the night of Aug 30. All cabinet members and BN leaders will be present.

And as I mentioned ‘hijack’ here’s the evidence, the private sector has already been told to play down their celebrations that night so as not to 'overshadow' the BN event.

Wonderful inclusiveness eh? But OK, it’s preparation for war and a little propaganda prior to the battle would not be amissed, provided there's no distracting non-BN events.

But I don’t believe it’ll be next year. Before I give my reasons, let’s hear what a news media man with links to the BN upper echelon has to say – and I refer to Wong Chun Wai of the Star. He said:

“The groundswell of opinion is that the general election will be held soon but several indicators point to next year.”

“The guessing game over the next general election has begun even if the general consensus is that it would only be held next year. The odds-on favourite is any time between January and April 2008. Certainly, it won’t be this year.”

underlining above mine

Well, that’s very strong indication from a source close to the BN top leaders.

There was a rumour that KJ wanted to mastermind a blitzkrieg election next month, yes, next month in August so that the Merdeka’s celebration would be all that sweeter with Daddy’s landslide victory just a week or so before our nation’s momentous occasion.

There’s still this possibility but I reckon the percentage probability of this occurring had dropped down from 35% to about 5%, given AAB’s unexplained absence and the current amazing silence of SIL. But the probability is still there for a snap general election in August.

Back to Wong Chun Wai – he continued:

“Last week, the Election Commission said it would only be ready to conduct the general election after September. Its chairman Tan Sri Abdul Rashid Abdul Rahman said the Government had asked the commission when it would be ready but did not indicate when the election would be called.”

“He added that by the end of September, the EC would have trained 200,000 election workers and procured all the equipment needed for the polls, including see-through ballot boxes and special punchers to be distributed to the country’s 25,000 polling districts.”

Note the date of preparedness of the EC – end of September!

I will now select from Wong’s excellent article the relevant information and comment on them:

"Most analysts have ruled out the holding of elections this year because, over the next few months, the national leaders would have their hands full."

I disagree. Well, let’s see, of course bearing in mind he’s the consummate top editor of the Star while poor kaytee is an anonymous blogger ;-)

"Preparations for next month’s 50th National Day are peaking. Celebrations have been planned nation-wide for a month, which would certainly have an impact on the “feel-good” factor, which is essential in the run-up to the polls."

"In fact, on July 30 and 31, Prime Minister Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi is expected to announce a slew of projects in Kedah, Perlis, Penang and Perak as part of the Northern Corridor Economic Region project."

"From modern agricultural practices involving harvesting padi three times a year to the construction of Penang’s second bridge, the projects are expected to fire up voters in these four states."

Good, good, the pork barrelling but note his sentence “Celebrations have been planned nation-wide for a month, which would certainly have an impact on the “feel-good” factor, which is essential in the run-up to the polls” – meaning the entire month of September will be an orgy of festivities and celebration, apart from the pre-election pork barrelling.

"Abdullah and his deputy Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak have a tight schedule ahead of them in September. The Budget, which many expect will be “an election budget”, is to be tabled in Parliament on Sept 7."

Mark my word – on September, in the midst of the orgy of celebrations, the budget will be a pre-election budget, meaning it will be loaded with more goodies that Father Christmas can ever imagine.

"We can rule out the possibility of the elections being held during the fasting month or Hari Raya (Oct 13-14)."

Absolutely - and a wonderful Hari Raya celebration where UMNO leaders will show their reconciliatory spirits of Islam Hadhari – generally consolidating on the feel-good atmosphere. In fact Wong's following statement actually supports my assessment as he wrote:

"The feel-good factor is expected to continue [that is, in October] with the likelihood of more national celebrations – the first Malaysian would be in space by then."


"By November, Abdullah has two important dates on his diary. First is the Asean Summit in Singapore, where his presence is regarded as crucial, as the Asean leaders deliberate over adopting the Asean Charter."

"Equally important for Pak Lah is the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting in Uganda, to be held around the same time as Malaysia lobbies for the election of Datuk Seri Dr Rais Yatim to be the secretary-general, which would make him the first Malaysian to hold the post."

"But by November and December, the drumbeat for the elections will become louder. Politicians can forget about taking a long break with their families at this time because election preparations would be in full swing."

For the Chinese, the year 2008 is a prosperous year. In Cantonese, 2008 rhymes with “yee teng teng fatt” or “sure to prosper”. Perhaps it’s also a good time for elections.

The above is where I disagree with Wong Chun Wai.

When the feel-good atmosphere has been created and established, one doesn’t want its momentum to falter. In fact one would want to capture and exploit that mood at its peak.

My prediction is the general election will be in mid or late November when the schools close on 16 November. Maybe the election will be held on 18th or 25 th November, both being Sundays where empty schools may serve as polling stations and teachers as extra recruited EC staff for the election.

As the Asean Summit, there has been precedence when Thai PM Thaksin didn’t attend one in 2005. If the Summit is at the end of November, then it’s gnam gnam (fitting nicely), with the leaders offering their congratulations to our PM. If at beginning of month, mou man tai (no problem).

The Commonwealth Head of States meeting is not important enough and AAB or even Najib could send a representative. In years, the Commonwealth has been losing its status in the eyes of some Asian-African nations. So I don’t see that as a hindrance for a November general election.

BREAKING BLOG NEWS: The Malaysian blogger has just posted Rais Yatim Withdraws From Commonwealth Sec-Gen Race. I Wonder Why.

Well, ;-) we can guess, can't we?

In KTemoc’s humble view, Wong can forget about revved up pre-elecvtion preparations in December because my forecast is that the general election could be in November. Also, the Chinese feng shui pun coincidence is not as important as the feel-good mood among the Malays.

So, to summarise, 5% probability for an August and 95% for a November general election.

Of course Wong Chun Wai could be absolutely correct in his prediction of early 2008. but I am only an anonymous blogger, so I don’t have much face to lose ;-)

Hey Dubya, they're in Pakistan, not Iraq

Extracts of a Sydney Morning Herald news item:

George Bush has made provocative new assertions about al-Qaeda's role in Iraq, using recently declassified information to make his case that the global battle against the terrorist network, and the safety of Americans at home, hinges on keeping US troops in Iraq to fight.

The US President's comments were greeted with scepticism by several terrorism experts and former intelligence officials, who said he had exaggerated or even misrepresented


"Here's the bottom line," Mr Bush said.
"Al-Qaeda in Iraq is run by foreign leaders loyal to Osama bin Laden. Like bin Laden, they are cold-blooded killers who murder the innocent to achieve al-Qaeda's political objectives."

Rand Beers, a former senior Bush and Clinton administration counter-terrorism official, said Mr Bush was exaggerating the al-Qaeda connections.

He "is oversimplifying what is happening there in Iraq", he said.
"He is misrepresenting where the major front of al-Qaeda is, which is in Pakistan."

It's like his Administration lie of Saddam's alleged link with al Qaeda, after the WMD lie collapsed, as the casus belli for attacking Iraq.

Yesterday, just as Iraqis celebrated their soccer team's historic Asian Cup win, two suicide car bombs marred the rare joyous moment by
killing 50 and wounding 135 in two car bomb attacks.

God bless America, with such a moronic obdurate stay-at-home-during-Vietnam president.

Wednesday, July 25, 2007

The pilot & the priest

Normally I post my favourite ha-ha stuff in KTemoc Kachinates, but this one is just too good not to share it here ;-)


A priest dies and is waiting in line at the Pearly Gates. Ahead of him is a guy who's dressed in sunglasses, a loud shirt, leather jacket and jeans.

Saint Peter addresses this cool guy:
"Who are you, so that I may know whether or not to admit you to the Kingdom of Heaven?"

The guy replies:
"I'm Pinang Pilot, retired XYZ Airlines pilot from Penang."

Saint Peter consults his list. He smiles and says to the pilot:
"Take this silken robe and golden staff and enter the Kingdom."

The pilot goes into Heaven with his robe and staff.

Next it's the priest's turn. He stands erect and booms out (perhaps a wee proudly):
"I am Father Anthony Rajah, pastor of Saint Anne's in Bukit Mertajam for the last 43 years."

Saint Peter consults his list. He says to the priest:
"Take this cotton robe and wooden staff and enter the Kingdom."

"Just a ding dong minute," says the good father,
"that man was a pilot and he gets a silken robe and golden staff, and I get only cotton and wood. How can this be?"

"Up here ... we go by results," says Saint Peter, "when you preached, people slept; when he flew, people prayed.”

Najib not hunting bloggers, but Nazri may be!

malaysiakini informs us that Opposition Leader Lim Kit Siang asked despairingly whether the Malaysian Parliament has become the world’s No 1 anti-bloggers Parliament.

He posed the question after UMNO’s top head kicker, Mohd Nazri Abdul Aziz, Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department warned that the full force of the law (presumably UMNO’s law) would fall upon the blogger daring enough to belittle Islam and the King.

It’s the usual UMNO’s favourite mantra of agama, bangsa dan negara (though in RPK's case, it's minus the bangsa). The mantra is a convenient tool for UMNO leaders to use to intimidate and silence others, especially those who might have the dirt on them, and teflon-ise its own members (eg. the KJ refusal to apologise for his seditious accusation of Chinese Malaysians intending to ‘split’ the Malay community, which in turn was used to mask 9.2 million other reasons).

Lim said – hey, hang on a tic’ bib, didn’t DPM Najib just said something totally different from UMNO’s top hatchet man?

malaysiakini reported that
“on Monday, Najib said the government has not made a ‘special decision’ to clamp down on bloggers. Yesterday, Nazri, who is also de facto law minister, told the Dewan Negara that the time has come for action.”

I searched my BolehTalk archives and came up with Anwar Exposed - nah, don’t be hopeful, this isn’t the de facto Anwar.

This incident happened almost 3 years ago when a mysterious ‘Anwar’ caused such a stir on Screenshots with his very crude comparison of UMNO and Islam Hadhari? Then he held the email address of
tongsanchai@yahoo.com. The Cantonese words ‘tongsan chai’ means ‘China boy’ or ‘Chinaman’ depending on how one wants to term it, but 'Anwar' was as tongsanchai as I am Punjabi.

As we are all aware the kerfuffle started with the
Berita Harian accusing Screenshots of condoning such a seditious posting.

When UMNO and government ministers began to threaten Jeff Ooi of Screenshots with the ISA, Lim Kit Siang of the DAP waded into the fray,
accusing the prime minister’s 2Ks – KJ and Kalimullah Hassan (New Straits Times editor-in-chief, whom Berita Harian reports to) – of hounding the wrong person. He accused them of attempting to settle personal scores through the exploitation of an issue not authored by Jeff Ooi.

Though initially the police went after Jeff Ooi, the target was changed to poor little ‘Anwar’, with Energy, Water and Communications Minister (at that time) Dr Lim Keng Yaik
revealing that police has identified him as a 30-year old Muslim man, who worked as a laboratory technician in Hospital Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia.

My BolehTalk partner, Mr X, found out that poor 'Anwar' was actually a far older bloke (then around 54) nearing retirement.

I asked of the dear Minister:
“Datuk, we’re all surprised that you and the Police would employ resources to the extent of identifying an obscene poster on Jeff Ooi’s Blog. Has he been a threat to national security or a notorious criminal?

If you remember, the public’s general preference and advice have been to ignore this vulgar idiot, rather than pursue him over a trifle.

In fact, Anwar regretted his impetuous actions and apologised for that on Malaysia-Today.

What now, Minister? Do we see him incarcerated for a moment of regretted foolishness – for daring to insult UMNO and UMNO’s Islamic values? Surely a free nation such as Malaysia needn’t behave like Communist China, North Korea or Iran!”

Sadly, Lim (the Minister not the DAP Grand Olde Man),
pressed for ‘Anwar’ to be charged. What a nasty mean minister, and a non-UMNO one at that too.

Mr X and I then wrote an open letter published in malaysiakini, appealing to the government to go easy on ‘Anwar’. Mr X took the trouble of comforting and supporting poor ‘Anwar’ who must have been terrified that the Communication Ministry in combination with the dreaded Police had traced and hunted him down. Mr X is like that, a rough diamond with his words but with a custard pie heart, soft and sweet.

In 'Anwar' Exposed (2)! I blogged:

But on 4 October the Sun newspaper reported that DPM Datuk Seri Najib Abdul Razak dismissed the Screenshot hoo-haa as sheer
nonsense. Datuk Seri Najib said the government wasn’t going to waste time countering every malicious allegation on the Internet (correctly so, if I may add).

Then yesterday we have Energy, Water & Communications Minister Lim Keng Yaik
stating that the investigation of ‘Anwar’ has been completed, and will be submitted to the AG by end of this month. malaysiakini headlines the article that Anwar may be prosecuted for incitement.

By pursuing the matter, basically the outcome of a vendetta between a mainsteam newspaper and a blog, to its unpleasant conclusion, has Lim KY deliberately disregarded DPM Datuk Najib’s decision on the matter? Has there been a disagreement between cabinet members, with ‘Anwar’ unfortunately caught in an
UMNO maelstorm?

I dug all this up to show that DPM Najib, like Dr Mahathir, seems, at least on the surface, to be consistent in his attitude in not giving too much attention to bloggers nor unduly worried about them.

But his ministers behaved otherwise. In the earlier case, it seemed to be Lim Keng Yaik who was far too enthusiastic in wanting to charge a middle-aged blogger while now UMNO’s top head kicker has declared war against bloggers.
And very déja vu-ish too!

Hey, who is in charge in the government?

Tony Blair's Mission Impossible?

In my previous post Sound advice for Tony Blair I discussed the limited role the US has (no doubt under Israeli ‘guidance’) assigned to the former British PM as its international envoy.

I mentioned Israel fearing a Blair probably hell-bent on making a fresh favourable name for himself to mitigate his disastrous backing of the US illegal Iraq war and occupation, coming up with actually genuine peace terms for BOTH sides to subscribe to.

The Israelis have no intention of accepting any peace terms unless it dictates what those terms should be (and it certainly would be able to do that if Washington continues to directly handle the peace talks), which has been why US Sec of State Condoleeza Rice said that Blair would only focus on building up the Palestinian economy and institutions, while the US would lead on the ‘political track’.

This defeats the original purpose where Blair would play a non-US and hopefully less US-oriented role in peace negotiations. Because of its invincible bias for Israel, the US is already tainted, and viewed with distrust, disdain and disrespect by the Arabs. The Bush Administration cannot be expected to play a fair and impartial role.

But obviously Blair hasn’t been embarrassed by Condoleeza Rice’s limitation of his role, or he is pretending there’s no such limitation, because he said he sees a "sense of possibility" for success in his new role as a Middle East peace envoy and is keen "to listen, to learn and to reflect" in his talks with Israeli and Palestinian leaders.

The bias of the US is all too obvious and grating because Blair is actually an envoy, not of the US alone but of the Quartet (UN, US, Russia and EU). Therefore Rice’s declared restriction on Blair’s participation is reeking with Israeli odour – ho hum, so what’s new with the US!

But in typical British upper lip speak (er no, he didn’t prefix his statement with ‘rippling old top, jolly good show’) Blair said: "I think that even from the conversations I've had there is a sense of possibility. But whether that sense of possibility can be translated into something -- that is something that needs to be worked at and thought about over time.”

Yawnnnnnnnnn ........ see what I mean ;-)

But James Wolfensohn, a former World Bank president – the one before Anwar Ibrahim’s buddy Paul Wolfowitz took over but was subsequently told to pack up and leave – said that Blair would be just wasting his time.

Wolfosohn was the Quartet’s enjoy but resigned after only 13 months in that role.

He said that the Quartet envoy’s job (whoever may be occupying it) was doomed because, as he experienced, Israel and the US had undermined him.

See what I mean!

Wolfensohn advised that unless this (Israeli-US sabotaging) situation changed, Blair would in effect be wasting his time. He said to Haaretz, an Israeli newspaper and probably the only mainstream one that could be relied upon to provide some balanced reporting:

"My worry for Tony Blair is that if you read the mandate he has - it's exactly the same as mine. It talks about helping both sides, helping the Palestinians, but there's nothing there about negotiating peace."

Because Israel doesn’t want peace!!! It wants to keep the status quo where Palestinians are living in a semi-state of ghetto-rised bondage and continuous humiliation – there’s a purpose to this but perhaps in another posting.

Blair had said last week that reviving the Palestinian economy as the key to developing a two-state solution.

“Two-state”? Not on your Deuteronomic nanny if Israel has anything to say, and Israel always have and will have where the blinded biased US is concerned.

Wolfensohn in fact said building a strong economic base for the Palestinians had been missed during his time. The Sydney Morning Herald reported this in an interview with Wolfosohn:

He was scathing about Israel and the US for failing to back his attempts in 2005 to develop the Palestinian economy after Israel withdrew from the Gaza Strip. He put his own money into a fund to secure Israeli commercial greenhouses in Gaza so they could be transferred to Palestinian farmers. But Israel closed Gaza's border and halted all exports.

Mr Wolfensohn said the collapse of Gaza's economy had led, in part, to the Hamas election victory in January last year, and that Gaza's population could not simply be ignored now it was under the authority of Hamas, which is shunned by the US, Israel and the European Union.

"The reality is that you have 1.4 million Palestinians living in Gaza, and you can't wish them away. You can't leave Gaza as a place where the rich and powerful can get out and leave just the people who can't make a living."

Wolfosohn concluded sadly: "I would only hope that there's a greater mandate given to him [Blair], because even with the superior standing that he has over the standing I had, if he doesn't have a mandate … halfway through negotiations your office is closed and someone takes over negotiations, you have to say you failed."

Israel and its religious vassal, the US – don’t expect them to be fair to the Palestinians. But good luck to Tony Blair.

Tuesday, July 24, 2007

Whassup, Doc?

According to malaysiakini Dr Mahathir has expressed tacit support for his once protégé, DPM Najib Abdul Razak in the latter’s recent assertion that Malaysia is an Islamic state.

The Grand Ole Man said: “We consider ourselves an Islamic state regardless of whether it is written in the Federal Constitution or not. The reality is (that) we practise Islamic teachings in the administration of this country.”

“This is a Muslim country because we follow Muslims teachings and Muslim injunctions, which make provisions for certain situations where injunctions cannot be carried out or can be amended.”

Was Dr M just commenting matter of fact on topic, or was he actually shoring up the position of the very silent DPM?

Friends again? Hi Uncle ... haiyah, lei suoi chai ah ...!

I put on my conspiracy-theory hat and wonder:

Hmmm, AAB is not even around
What’s he doing downunder, as alleged?
Don’t tell he can’t have enough of Perth’s nasi kandar?

Where’s SIL?
Very quiet on the Western and Eastern Fronts

Hishamuddin, cousin of Najib, ‘warned’ MCA to ‘shut up’
Now, GOM has stepped in to back up Najib’s claim

RPK has posted that one theory for AAB’s quite and swift disappearance could be that he (AAB) was warned to skip out of country before he was arrested - wow, can you beat that?

Hey, why are we having de facto silence all around?

Too complicated for poor KTemoc.

You work it out ...

RPK targeting; RPK targeted

So ...

malaysiakini tells us that UMNO information chief Muhammad Taib has filed a police report against Raja Petra Kamarudin’s website Malaysia-Today for allegedly publishing disparaging remarks against the King and Islam.

Dang Wangi district police chief ACP Mohamad Zulkarnain Abdul Rahman confirmed to malaysiakini that the police will investigate the matter under the Sedition Act, Penal Code and the Multimedia and Communications Act.

Frightening 20-syllable legislative title ;-) though RPK would have been anticipating it, what with his recent sensational revelations of police and politicians’ corruption, all complete with supporting documents.

But the most amusing thing (if it can be amusing in such a threatening situation for RPK) has been the remarks by Muhammad Taib.

After stating that comments posted on M-Today blogsite "incited hate between the various races and could affect unity and national security" and that
“the reports contain criminal elements which could incite anyone and cause fear. Maybe these people (bloggers) had forgotten that Malaysia is a country with many sensitivities,” he then claimed that he had been advised (by whom?) against divulging the statements and comments to the media as they were too sensitive.

Balderdash – what’s there so sensitive that couldn't be divulged when those comments at M-Today have been read already by hundreds of thousands of people, if not millions.

I wouldn’t be surprised at all if he hasn’t even read those M-Today blog comments himself, and merely made an appearance at the Dang Wangi police station as front man as if he was the author of the report.

If Muhammad Taib was truly interested in national security he should be making a police report on the alleged ties between the police and criminal elements that RPK had revealed with, as I mentioned, supporting statutory declarations by victimised police officers.

If the revelations by RPK are true, what kind of country are we living in where criminals could decide where police officers could be posted to! Now, that' a serious matter of national security interest.

But what Muhammad Taib had done has been a threatening attempt to stifle RPK's exposé by using the police and the old tested formula of ‘agama, bangsa dan negara’. Surely the mantra will warm the cockles of the heartland’s hearts, to see they have in Taib a great leader and defender of the faith (which may be why he fronted at Dang Wangi?).

With RPK, they of course have to omit the ‘bangsa’ element. but there’s still hope in this department for Hang Tuah wannabes as the MCA needs to be slapped down yet for daring to snarl back at kungfu-sword waving Hishamuddin.

I admire what RPK is doing. He not only has his 'Deep Throats' and flair for writing but more importantly the guts to post the damning stories of utter corruption and non-performance of the government, including shocking fairy tales of Sleeping Beauty and the Dwarfs (of performance).

His exposé on public governance (or lack of) are stuff that opposition dreams ought to be made of, not stupid doctored photo just to blacken a person’s name for cynical political interests rather than for reasons of justice.

Tian Chua should take a leaf, or better still several, out of RPK’s book, and focus on issues that smack of official corruption and bad or questionable policies but based on evidence.

I would dare say Tian has the guts of RPK, though with a more reckless martyr-ish flavour, but he need to cease dabbling in non-relevant matters just to pamper any particular person’s personal idiosyncrasies.

I hope Tian will stop wading in the cesspool – it’s just not his natural habitat. He should now assume more of a RPK or DAP approach, combining daring with relevance and substance.

Monday, July 23, 2007

Cornered MCA bares its fangs at UMNO

Sheeesh, I made a spelling error in my title and no one picked it up - c'mon guys, you're slipping ;-) should be 'bares' and not 'bears' fangs - hehehe, no wonder MCA doesn't have much of a bite - my bad

My blogging compatriot, Dr Darren Hsu posted an excellent analysis of what would be likely to occur when Education Minister Hishamuddin Hussein ‘warned’ the MCA for questioning DPM Najib’s statement that Malaysia has always been an Islamic state.

Darren wrote:

UMNO youth gave a warning to MCA to shut up, according to Malaysiakini.

I am even more confused. Isn’t MCA part of BN? If so, why not let them have a chance to speak up and at least win some votes back from their community? Aren’t MCA seats part of BN seats?

Issuing a warning to a fellow BN component party is not a wise move. If they keep quiet, it would appear to the Rakyat that they are weak and just followers of UMNO and that would cost them lots of votes and some seats. If they don’t keep quiet, what would happen? A public quarrelling between 2 BN parties?

I am confused that why can’t they just discuss all these in private, through the so-called proper channels, like they always insisted?


But when a warning is issued to MCA to shut up, it has actually pushed MCA to a corner without any more space to maneuvre. This will not auger well to MCA and by extension, would not auger well to the whole BN.

'Warn'? 'Shutup'? What terrible words to direct at a political ally. Hishamuddin must be badly brought up to be so totally insensitive and rude.

Indeed, as I commented in Darren’s blog: Even a cornered rat will fight back, and finally a cornered MCA has found its long missing backbone to say: ‘Nuff is ’nuff.

I came across a refreshing new back-stiffened MCA in a
malaysiakini article titled ‘MCA not anyone's 'slave', says Youth chief’

It won’t do the BN much good when its two major component parties are squabbling in public. Nor will it be reassuring to the general public when the likely sequel to this acrimonious war of words will see Hishamuddin or one of those ambitious UMNO Youth hotheads drawing the keris with a threat to bathe it in MCA blood.

But I tell you what – it will do wonders for our economy in terms of tourism and foreign investments – if these fangs bearing contest continues, the wonder would be how far our national earnings would plummet.

With Hishamuddin’s outrageous and insensitive talk-down to the MCA, as if the MCA was a peon in colonial times to be told by Tuan to shut up, a normally compliant MCA had to do or die just like a cornered rat. And a cornered rat bites ferociously.

Wasn’t it Sun Tze, the ancient Chinese military strategist, who warned against cornering the enemy. I believe he wrote:
"To a surrounded enemy you must leave a way of escape."

The strategist was advising that a cornered enemy would fight with all his passion and inflict consequential serious damage that would not be worth the reward of eliminating him.

Sure as hell Hishamuddin didn’t leave any escape path for the MCA.

UMNO has always felt it alone is the BN, and the other component parties are mere add-on’s. No doubt it is what people would term as the BN's primus inter pares or ‘first among equals’. But UMNO has over-focused on the ‘first’ and forgot completely about the ‘equals’.

The MCA has for years endured humiliation by a sometimes insensitive UMNO. I have often blogged that the MCA’s worst enemy is not the DAP but UMNO.

With each humiliation, the MCA sees its support base slowly slipping away, and small wonder when disgusted and shamed Chinese Malaysians cringed at the passivity of a compliant MCA. It was only in recent years that it had gradually clawed its way back.

While I am somewhat delighted to see the MCA regaining a bit of the backbone it lost years ago, I am not sure where we will be going with such serious acrimonious exchanges between the two major parties of the BN, with only 39 days to go to our nation’s 50th anniversary.

Remembering Apcet II - who was acting PM then?

Joe Gombak wrote a letter to malaysiakini asking whether our mainstream media knows exactly what aspects of Malaysia's political culture could possibly benefit other countries. Gombak indicated his displeasure, distress and disgust at the rotten state of affair, our failed state.

I find myself agreeing with most of his criticisms. The one that attracted me was his statement:

Our dominant ethnic political party organises mob violence at venues (such as the Apcet II meeting) whenever the occasion suits itself, and unashamedly threatens violence against the ethnic minorities at its AGM (Kerishamudin's ‘keris’-waving and ‘bathe it in blood’ antics courtesy of national television) and not to mention mobilising its youth wing mobs to threaten to burn down a public building belonging to an ethnic minority - the Selangor Chinese Assembly Hall.

Indeed, indeed, but I wonder whether Gombak has been aware of who was the acting PM when the UMNO thugs went to a KL hotel to wreck violence on an international meet, namely the Apcet II conference on East Timor?

Hint – this was in the mid-1990 and Dr Mahathir was not in the country. The acting PM said of the mob violence which disrupted the Apcet II meeting, forcing its abandonment.

That acting PM said the UMNO disruption of Aptet II:
“Our mission was to stop the conference and we did just that.”

Gombak advised us remember this when you vote.

Yes, thanks - I’ll make sure my de jure (not de facto) vote counts!

(I had mis-spelt Apcet as Aptet in following posts)

Aptet II Disgrace - He who cannot be named!
Who was in charge when Aptet II was attacked by thugs?

Contemptible exploitation of Nuri tragedy

malaysiakini published a letter from Rozmal Malakan titled Ayah ku dan helikopter Nuri in which she, re-living her life as an army kid, described the frightening age of the RMAF’s Nuri helicopter.

She provided quite a comprehensive description of the RMAF’s fleet and her impression of how the Nuri, acquired since ‘antiquity’ is still flying when other aircraft types have been replaced.

She was of course commenting on the recent tragic crash of a Royal Malaysian Air Force (RMAF) helicopter where all six on board sadly perished. She concluded her letter with:

"Jika masa dahulu ketika Nuri masih baru, hati ku sebagai anak seorang perajurit sentiasa berdebar-debar menantikan kepulangan ayah dari operasi, apatah lagi sekarang ini seorang isteri, seorang anak menanti-nantikan kepulangan suami atau ayah mereka daripada menjalankan operasi dengan menggunakan pesawat Nuri? Fikir-fikirkanlah."

Very loose translation placed within context of letter: "Even when the Nuri was new, we as children of a soldier awaited our dad’s return from operations by the Nuri with beating hearts. What more then with an aged Nuri today, for other families of soldiers who too await the return of their loved ones in such a helicopter. Consider their worries."

Very subtle but nonetheless a veiled criticism of the use of an old Nuri aircraft.

But in an earlier malaysiakini letter by Helpless Anak Malaysia posted on Thursday, a none too subtle accusation of
Six lives could have been saved if ... launched straight into condemnation of, guess who, yes, DPM Najib for seeing 'fit to continue allowing our air force to fly the Nuris after nearly four decades in operation.'

Apart from also using the opportunity to dig at a submarine deal (involving guess again who, yes, the DPM and Razak Baginda), the letter attributed the crash and thus the six lives to the Defence Ministry's decision to continue operating the Nuris.

Can we criticise a politician like DPM Najib? Most certainly, all politicians who have issued bad policies or not issued good policies are fair game in a democratic system. But we need to ask what's the criticism about? Was there a failed policy? Have we confirmed yet (to a reasonable degree) that his failed policy had brought about the Nuri Crash?

An air crash could stem from a variety of causes, and the case of the Nuri accident is yet to be determined in a professional manner by aviation accident investigation experts.

That's right, we are yet to know whether the accident had been the cause of technical problems, structural failure, weather, procedural errors, human factors, etc, or a combination of the mentioned factors.

But we already have a pre-emptive strike against Najib.

Given that a certain political party has taken to even exploiting hearsay evidence about a (up to now, non-existent) photograph in a murder trial to target Najib, with its shameless grubbiness manifested in a doctored photograph, one cannot help but sense the usual poo-smearing bull has begun again.

Yes, I get bad vibes that Helpless Anak Malaysia's pre-emptive and highly ill-informed accusations could be politically driven. They would be akin to the pronouncements of those American frontier days' vigilante corp, where an accused was guilty until proven innocent, assuming he or she could do it before the immediate execution by hanging or shooting.

I suppose desperate times for a desperate party requires shonky desperate measures.

We all know the aim of that party’s questionable and immoral campaign has been to embarrass, and hopefully destroy Najib politically. Perception is everything in politics - truth or facts aren't important.

It is noteworthy to mention here that by contrast, the leader of that opposition party has avoided criticising PM AAB or SIL, or if they had been made, were very circumspect, just a light tap on the wrist (maybe even a friendly caress).

And I was informed that Australian viewers heard from a world renown reformist in a recent TV interview that PM AAB is somewhat 'compassionate' - how touching!

Thus the seeming selective targeting of Najib has made even more plausible the GAN conspiracy theory that we learn from Raja Petra Kamarudin Malaysia-Today.

Of course criticism of any BN leader by an opposition party is part of the democratic process, but two things stood out like the proverbial in this particular example – (1) AAB and SIL have been left virtually untouched, and (2) the criticisms against Najib have been based on hearsay evidence or as yet undetermined findings, with even a recent demand by that party for Najib to produce the alleged photograph and explain his involvement.

Now, that last silly demand may sound moronic, but in fact has been part of an ongoing campaign to blacken Najib’s name, politically of course, for in truth I doubt there is genuine interest in justice per se for Altantuyaa. Obviously the objective seems to be to maintain the sensationalising and 'rage' against Najib (and bugger the evidence) for political benefits.

And as mentioned earlier, 'ere the investigation into the accident has been completed we get a so-called expert telling us that those six unfortunate lives could have been saved if a newer helicopter type had been used by the RMAF.

The fact is that properly maintained older generation aircraft are not by themselves a safety problem. Many air forces around the world including the Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF) have operated and still do these older generation aircraft. For example, the RAAF operated the venerable C-47, a military version of the DC-3, for more than 50 years, from the early 1940's until the last two were retired in 1999.

Then there are the (comparatively younger than the C-47 but quite old) Caribou aeroplanes which saw service in the RAAF in 1964 during the Vietnam War and are still operating today. The RAAF Caribous are a lot older than the RMAF Nuris which only entered Malaysian service around 1968. Some Nuri airframes are actually much younger than 1968, when they were bought to add to an explanding Nuri fleet in later years

So, the condemnation of Najib for allowing the RMAF to continue using the Nuri had been premature but WTF, the aim has never been about truth but more about getting Najib (but not AAB or SIL).

Such premature or politically driven allegations are immoral and unprincipled for the reason they would unnecessarily and unfairly intrude into the private bereavement of the flight crew's families, and unjustifiably aggravate their tragic distress for their monumental loss. How would those families feel when they believe Helpless Anak Malaysia’s words? So he shed some crocodile tears for the unfortunate families but alas, what a grubby letter to unscrupulously exploit a tragedy and possibly set the families' griefing into greater despair.

Yes, I regret these unconscionable political exploitations of human tragedies. They are really tactics best consigned to the gutters. It has assumed a hue not unlike the nonsensical '50 Dalil Kenapa Anwar Tidak Boleh Jadi PM' and the political crucifixion of Tengku Razaleigh because of his innocuous wearing of a Sabahan headgear.

We now witness similar contemptible campaigning by the opposition party.

So, how can such a party offer itself as a better political alternative when it wallows in the same sort of cesspool, not forgetting the unbelievable existence of a de facto leader in a party which has the brazen nerve to preach about democracy and due process.

Indeed, the acorn does not fall far from the oak tree.

Sound advice for Tony Blair

When you carry a name like Levy, especially Daniel Levy, most people know who you are. Yes, Daniel Levy is a Jew, even an Israeli.

And indeed he is, and not just an ordinary Jew. Daniel Levy is a former Israeli peace negotiator. He is also the son of Tony Blair's former Middle East envoy, Lord Levy.

So, perhaps his words of advice on Middle-Eastern affairs to Tony Blair may yet carry some weight.

Tony Blair has been appointed as a Middle East negotiator with strong US backing.

But there is growing doubt about his mandate to solve the Israeli-Palestinian problem, principally because the US Secretary of State, Condoleezza Rice, said the US would lead on the ‘political track’, leaving Mr Blair to focus on building up the Palestinian economy and institutions.

In other words, the US already has a predetermined political course (under Israeli 'guidance' of course) and doesn’t want a British negotiator - one probably hell-bent on making a fresh favourable name for himself to mitigate his disastrous backing of the US illegal Iraq war and occupation - to come up with actually genuine peace terms for BOTH sides to subscribe to.

Israel has undoubtedly anticipated that, and would have instructed Washington to restrict likely loose cannon Blair – ‘loose cannon’ in Israeli eyes.

The Israelis have no intention of accepting any peace terms unless it dictates what those terms should be (and it certainly would be able to do that if Washington continues to directly handle the peace talks).

Obviously Israel wants to remain in a superior position to retain large tracts of Palestinian land (but sacred Hebraic Judea and Samaria), controlled Palestine as a vassal state preferably within Israel, and the biggest prize of all, Jerusalem.

Yes, Jerusalem – the wonders of religion in keeping two Abrahamic faith apart.

But Levy said that, assuming Tony Blair is permitted to revive the Middle East peace process, the peace talks will be doomed unless the US accepts that Hamas is a very significant force among the Palestinians, and begins talking to the militant group. The US just cannot just listen to Israel only, and everyone knows Israel doesn’t want Hamas which is far more difficult to control than a more corrupt al Fatah.

Mnay political observers expect Levy to informally advise Tony Blair on the ins and outs of the tricky Middle East situation. Levy also warned that al-Qaeda could recruit from Hamas disaffected and marginalized supporters, unless Hamas is allowed, in Levy’s words, "inside the tent".

Levy warned that the US (and Israeli) efforts to bolster the Palestinian President, Mahmoud Abbas, to the exclusion of Hamas, won’t work if it ignored Hamas's control of Gaza, and unstated (but included here by Ktemoc), the support of the majority of the Palestinians.

Levy said Blair's record in Northern Ireland meant he understood the need to talk to extremists, which may be the reason Israel had instructed Washington to limit Blair’s role to just building up the Palestinian economy and democratic institutions while the US directly controls the peace negotiations/process (which effectively means Israel will be in the driver's seat).

George Bush had persistently called on Hamas (but not Israel) to renounce violence, and to recognize Israel. He said the US would refuse to deal with Hamas until it did so.

But Bush fails to understand that he can’t force an organization like Hamas to do what he wants – for example, has Hamas succumbed after more than one year of deprivation of Palestinian money, illegally held back by Israel, and the US engineered campaign to deny Hamas of financial donors? All under Israeli direction of course. No, Hamas continues to be defiantly unmoved by such threats and deprivation, and is still supported by those long suffering Palestinians.

Levy said that by deliberately ostracizing Hamas, Bush was presenting a ‘misguided’ gift to al-Qaeda recruiters. ‘Misguided’ by Israel?

Levy even said that Hamas is a potential ‘bulwark against al-Qaeda’.

He believes that through inclusive negotiations, Hamas could find a way of accepting the reality of Israel. He quipped: "We don't need them to be Zionists."

Of course not, but we have some of those (Zionists) in Malaysia we could lend/send to Israel. ;-)

Saturday, July 21, 2007

Is Malaysia an Islamic State?

Is Malaysia a secular or Islamic state?

malaysiakini Dr Chandra Muzzafar, former president of Aliran and former VP of PKR ;-) has this to say:

Malaysia is not a secular state within the conventional use of the term. Neither is it an Islamic state in the classical sense.

It is not a secular state since the Malaysian state formulates policies and organises activities from the building of mosques and the administration of the Hajj, on the one hand, to the establishment of Islamic schools and the dissemination of Islamic awareness through public broadcasting channels, on the other, which demonstrate that it is actively involved in sustaining and strengthening the position of Islam in society.

Judicial pronouncements and political utterances from the past which suggest that Malaysia is a secular state do not in any way negate the fact that the state has functioned in a non-secular mode, especially in the last three decades.

Nonetheless, for the majority of contemporary Muslim jurists, Malaysia is not an Islamic state since its constitution does not state that governance is based upon the Quran and Sunnah (the way of the Prophet Muhammad). Neither is syariah the supreme law of the land. Hudud (the Islamic criminal code) is not in force anywhere in Malaysia. These are legal and political attributes of state which are found in almost all those countries that are acknowledged as ‘Islamic’.

Hmmm, I am sure PAS would like to rectify the situation described in the above last paragraph. And this has been what PAS has been campaigning on. Initially it tried to appeal only to the Muslims, arguing that only a religious approach (PAS' approach, of course) under the direct banner of God (as prescribed by PAS, of course) the governance of the nation would be without corruption and injustice and all thw nasties that we have been plagued with.

When it realised some years back that it couldn’t wrestle power away from UMNO without convincing the non-Muslims to vote for it, it started a program to soften its conservative Islamic image. Its young Turks, who are more PR-savvy, courted non-Muslim voters with its promise of inclusiveness, non corruptibility and fairness. Even a Buddhist temple developing a large icon of Buddha in Kelantan was allowed with much fanfare to show PAS tolerance.

I am in support of such PAS inclusiveness but we are of course not yet under a PAS Islamic government. I still have doubts about its sincerity of inclusiveness because from time to time I have witnessed party leaders succumbing to their misogynist inclinations to come up with harsh conservative policies that are better suited in a medieval male-dominant society.

Take for example the harassment of working Muslim women in Kota Baru where religious police would hunt down those with ‘sexy’ clothing, like for god’s sake, jeans – or those without a tudung (female Islamic headgear).

Then the worst punishment for a Muslim woman who’s minus a tudung working at, say, a supermarket or shop counter, would be to suffer a fine of RM50 for improper dressing. How can these women afford the loss of such a princely sum? Where is the justice? In fact I dare say it's a form of corruption, namely to force people to do its will through threats of suffering (unaffordable financial loss).

In my posting 'Virtue' of Kelantan I wrote (extract only – for full post, see link in this same sentence):

Tan Swee Nan, a manager of a franchise outlet, said that the KB council has been bullying female workers on the dress code. She added that some of her Muslim co-workers were fined RM50 just for not wearing a tudung.

She averred:
“I know of female workers who run and hide when they see council enforcement officers on their rounds because they forgot to wear their tudung. There must be a practical approach.”

But under the KB Municipal dress regulations, Muslim women must wear dresses which cover their ankles and a tudung which covers the hair and forehead. Hmmm, what about poverty, unemployment, justice for the poor, flood control, illiteracy, etc?

Non-Muslims aren't spared either, providing us with a glimpse of PAS' intention under an Islamic State rule it proposes. The non-Muslim women (men excused) must wear outfits which do not expose the navel, or reveal cleavage (c'mon lah, Pak Haji!) or emphasise the buttocks (emphasised? Aren't buttocks ... er ... buttocks?)

They are banned from wearing body-hugging outfits, blouses which show the navel, see-through blouses, mini skirts and tight pants.

Therefore I have doubts about its promise of inclusiveness because in a non ultra religious society non-Muslim women may wear all those delightful body-hugging outfits, blouses which show the navel, see-through blouses (usually with bra, of course, stop being so hopeful), mini skirts and tight pants.

And then, its arguments of a virtually guaranteed Islamic utopia have been either naive or cynically driven by political expediency, if we take that mother of all Islamic nation, Saudi Arabia as an example, where there have been persecutions of minorities and utter corruption within its ruling clique.

And last year in Indonesia Golkar's religious affairs committee, which has responsibility for national moral issues, Yahya Zaini, was caught on video with his pants down, literally, with popular Indonesian singer, Maria Eva.

The lady is less than coy about her illicit relationship with Indonesia's 'morality' chief. She has admitted making the love-video but denied distributing it. Maybe she just wanted to watch it herself? ;-) See my posting
'Virgin' of Indonesia.

Great stuff this 'morality' stuff but we may assured of the usual cakap ta'serupa bikin, where it won't apply to the leaders.

To be continued ….. (next, UMNO)