Wednesday, March 25, 2009

The keris of Hishamuddin

Malaysiakini - The end of the road for the keris.

I am glad Hishamuddin has come to his senses, at least on this irritating issue.

While the keris may be part and parcel of Malay history and culture, to draw it and at the same time claim it’s not threatening is nonsense.

Drawing a sword (or keris) to kiss it is NOT a Malay tradition. It’s Western and alien to us Asians, whether Malays, Indians, Chinese, Japanese, Koreans, etc.

Officers of the Malaysian military draw and kiss their sword on parade only because our armed services were trained by the British, and continue using the British military drill procedures.

When a Malay or Chinese warrior draws a sword/keris, as the saying goes, the weapon has to ‘drink’ blood, so a Malay or Chinese should not fool around with that action.

Please read my earlier post on historical events associated with the keris - Hishamuddin's keris stabbed UMNO & BN

But let me pick one item from that post for re-publishing here. I had written:

One and a half years ago I posted
The Curse of UMNO's Keris? where I mentioned that Adnan Yaakob, an UMNO supreme council member and also the MB of Pahang, had asked for the symbol of the keris to be removed from the UMNO flag.

He said that the keris is a weapon denoting quarrels, and could have been the cause of the numerous quarrels in the party. In other words it’s bad feng shui for UMNO to have such a nasty weapon as a party symbol.

Adnam stated: "There were 20 major quarrels in UMNO since its formation 60 years ago. The symbol may signify the party’s struggles but it also means quarrels."

He reminded us of the acrimonious internal disputes involving the late Tunku Abdul Rahman (with Tun Razak), Tengku Razaleigh Hamzah (with Dr Mahathir), and of course Dr Mahathir (with Ku Li, Anwar and AAB).

Maybe we ought to add in Onn Jaafar (with Tunku). Then there were state leaders such as the late Harun Idris, once touted as a PM, who fell foul of Hussein Onn.

The keris in the UMNO flag is drawn, which, according to belief not just unique to the Malay world, must 'taste' blood. Eastern superstition demands that a weapon such as a keris, dagger or sword must never be drawn unless one intends to 'feed' it with blood.

It is believed that the word keris originated from the old Javanese word ngeris which means 'to stab'.

As I had also written: We Malaysians are also familiar with Taming Sari, a Javanese keris with magical powers that would protect its owner …

… though it didn’t save the life of the original eponymous owner, a Javanese warrior who was killed by Hang Tuah through deceit, as was Hang Jebat.

Tuah appropriated the Taming Sari after killing the owner, went back home to Melaka to one day kill his best friend at the behest of a tyrant.

Kill, kill, kill, die, die die … and all dead! That's what a keris or Chinese weapon is supposed to do, 'coz that's what it has been designed for ...

... certainly not for decoration!

In an unhappy ending to the story, Tuah finally threw away the keris … though the Perak royal house claims it still holds the Taming Sari …

… OK, and guess what has just happened to the once-august and highly respected royal house of Perak?

And in the Indonesian legend of Mpu Gandring and the keris for which he cursed Ken Arok for seven generations, someone generations later had to throw that keris away into the Java Sea, to stop the endless chain of chaos and death.

So, will Hisham quietly (like Tuah) throw away a symbol of war, which in Malay/Indonesian folklore and history has been associated with cruelty, death and Greek-like tragedy?

Only he knows.


  1. Tuah appropriated the Taming Sari after killing the owner, went back home to Melaka to one day kill his best friend at the behest of a tyrant.

    Wasn't Hang Tuah a Chinese Muslim from China ! And so was Hang Jebat , Hang Kasturi and Hang Lekir ! sent by the Ming Emperor to guard princess Hang Li Po !

  2. I think that's what RPK said, but I doubt the story of Tuah being a Chinese

  3. Ktemoc

    Let me give you a brief run thru :
    Sometime in the yr2000 , TDM commissioned agroup of scientist from all over the world to prove that Hang Tuah and his friends are Malays as written in the official text of the Sejarah Melayu which was the main text used in the primary schools .
    After the research was done and the report was filed in , suddenly Hang Tuah was no more in the Sejarah Melayu and it was withdrawn as the official text .

    Here's the so called evidence !

    Findings of the team of scientists, archaeologist, historian and other technical staff from the United State, United Kingdom, Germany, Canada, Yemen & Russia

    The graves of Hang Tuah, Hang Jebat, Hang Lekiu and their close friends have been found and their skeletons had been analysed. Their DNA had been analysed and it is found that Hang Tuah, Hang Jebat, Hang Lekiu etc. are not Malay, but Chinese (Islamic Chinese, just like the famous Admiral Cheng Ho). Malacca was a protectorate of China at that time, and the Emperor of China sent the Sultan of Malacca “yellow gifts’ as a token of his sovereignty. The 5 warrior brothers were believed to be sent to help protect Malacca and its Sultan from Siam (Thailand).
    “Hang” is an unusual surname or name for a Malay. It sounds like s corruption of a Chinese surname.

    In fact, Chinese names start with the surname first, and given names last. Malay names start with the given names first, and the father’s name last (as in Ahmad bin Yusuf which means “Ahmad, the son of Yusuf”). There is no surname in traditional Malay! There is no surname to carry forward to the next generation.

    We also need to examine the genealogy. We know that Hang Tuah’s father was Hang Mamat. Here, we do not see a Malay name transmission. We see a name being carried forward. It is also noted that the placement of the name that is carried forward is in front. This indicates that the surname is “Hang”. It is the transmission of Chinese names.

    We also know that Hang Tuah’s son is Hang Nadim. Again, the name “Hang” is carried forward, and yet again, auspiciously in front, as a Chinese name would be, with the surname in front. There is no indication of a Malay naming convention.

    Note that Hang Nadim is also known as Si Awang (Malays would colloquially refer to others as “Si”. “A” or “Ah” is a common prefix for referring to others in Chinese. Thus, a person with surname Wang/Huang would be referred to as “Si Ah Wang” in Malaysia - Mr. Ah Huang) by the Malays.

    Note that Hang Tuah’s mother is Dang Merdu. “Dang” would be quite an unusual surname for a Malay also. However, “Dang” or “Tang” is a common Chinese surname. Note that the name “Dang” is in front, signifying that this is a Chinese naming convention, yet again.

    Moreover, before the time of the 5 warriors with their close families during this close period of relationship with the Chinese, there are no Malays with this name.

    Note that the Chinese ‘princess’ who married the Sultan of Malacca was called “Hang Li Po”. Here, we not only see the same name, but the name is also in front, indicating a Chinese naming convention. Hang Li Po brought along with her many servants and bodyguards from China who became the Baba and Nyonya's of Malacca - these folk exist to this day. Chinese who do not know how to speak or write Chinese. They have been totally ‘malayanised”. Babas are people of Chinese descend who have been malayanised to such an extent that they wear Malay clothing, eat Malay food (with some Chinese food), speak Malay, and do not speak or write Chinese. Malacca is famous for its Baba communities. The only thing that is Chinese about them is that they are of Chinese ancestry. If you say that Hang Tuah is a Malay in the same sense that these Chinese have been malayanised, then you might be quite right. However, at this present moment, we are arguing on the basis whether he was an ethnic Malay or an ethnic Chinese, in the sense of blood ancestry. .

    There is an old Chinese tradition where warriors or servants in the royal palace were given or re-issued with surnames given by the emperor, to signify that they belong to the emperor, or to one of his offsprings. Therefore, it is possible that some very special bodyguards of the emperor or the royal family, have the same surname to signify that they are a unit formed especially to protect that one owner. Since the Princess Hang Li Po was given away in marriage to a strategic partner whose land the emperor wanted to ensure is safe and stable, he assigned a group of able warriors to the Princess Li Po, and he gave their families the same surname. This is not an unusual practice for the Chinese emperor.

    1) Evidence that traditional Malay naming conventions do not carry the name of the father forward.

    2) There is no surname to carry forward

    3) Neither name nor surname are placed in front.

    4) The genealogy of the early part of the lineage tree makes reference to Chinese ancestry:- “Putera Chedra China” “Puetra China” and then later “Paduka Sri Cina”

    This proves there has been early Chinese links in the Malay/Indonesian races and aristocratic lineages.

    Note the change in names from Chinese to Malay :
    Hang Too Ah, Hang Jee Fatt, Hang Lee Ker, Hang Lee Kiew, Hang Li Po.
    Hang Tuah, Hang Jebat, Hang Lekir and Hang Lekiu.

  4. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

  5. god almighty chaptokam. if that was the brief version, i'd hate to see your longer one!

    verbal diahoerria springs to mind!

  6. Go hang all of them, including yourself! At least we won't have anymore of your lengthy irrelevant posts once you are gone!

  7. Hishamuddin should be given credit for standing firm on the teaching Science and Maths in English.

    And UMNO Youth have come to age by putting in Khairy as their leader which is the right choice. With so many opposition within and external, yet he won with a respectable margin. Clearly he won with his own merit and nobody can say now he is riding on his father in law strength.

    From now on perhaps we will see a more liberal and open minded with progressive attitude UMNO Youth. Yep, they are moving ahead for betterment, on the other hand the PR people are turning for the worst.............

  8. Ha ha what a comical joker ! No need for you to tell me what to do !

  9. "liberal and open minded with progressive attitude UMNO Youth...they are moving ahead for betterment"

    Nothing in Khairy Jamaluddin's past behaviour shows him to be liberal and open minded.

    Ayoh, Xiean, very shy to read your writing-lah. Want to be an apologist also must must have some quality-lah (as Hokkien say u-liao)

  10. "Hishamuddin should be given credit for standing firm on the teaching Science and Maths in English."

    I thought MCA disagrees with this policy ? Or MCA doesn't know what it agrees or disagres with ?

  11. Hi Ktemoc

    You may want to take a look at
    the comments on Rocky Bru
    regarding KJ's win as new UMNO
    Youth Chief. These comments are mostly from UMNO members.

    Phua Kai Lit

  12. "KTemoc said...
    don't read rocky bru's"

    You should. He's you fellow Mahathir admirer-Anwar hater-Najib lover

  13. 1 out of 3 correct wakakakakaka

  14. 1 out of three correct !

    I can guess which one is correct !wakakakaka

  15. Hi Ulan Bator,
    Ktee admits he is 1 of 3.
    Guess the 1 is Anwar hater.
    I am all 3. Thank you.
    Chap and Xien, wanna join the chorus?
    Awaiting KT's comments on Khairy.
    Bro,why are you on the same page - the kris.
    I thought everyone has finished the book.
    Kris is nothing but a deooration and a symbol.
    Samurai sword and the Sikh knife are more lethal.

  16. Ulan Bator,

    Your must be staying in a cage surrounded by four walls to be out of the loop. CM LGE have mercy for their supporters, so he is building a Tiger Park in Penang, so and roam over there........

  17. LGE building a tiger park for tiger shows with him as the main actor ! hahahalioooulowww wonder who's his partner ?

  18. Of all the words in Pak Lah's farewell speech to UMNO, the most important, in my opinion is this one paragraph.

    But I don't think there are enough people in UMNO and BN who are listening with their hearts and minds.

    "We must come to our senses. Outside the Dewan Merdeka, there are many who believe that if Umno and BN do not change their ways, then the March 8, 2008 general election will be the last time the BN forms the government. After this (if we do not change), the people outside this hall will not vote for us again.

    I say, AMEN.

  19. Lim Kit Siang said:

    Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi confirms his image as a basically decent and humble person who unfortunately could not translate his good instincts into government policy, measures and actions resulting in his being prematurely and ignominiously forced out by his own party and becoming the shortest-serving Prime Minister of the country.

    YB Lim have lost his memories, they are the one who planted the root for AAB early departure. That the problem with the LIms nowadays, I do not think they be any better alternative.....sigh!.........

  20. Lim Kit Siang not only was responsible for Pak Lah's early exit , it fact most of the PR goons painted Pak Lah as sleepy , ZZZZZZ, weak in making decisions , flip flop , doesn't walk the talk , etc , etc , and want him out . Now its a bout turn , they wanted him to stay on , aiyoh , but too late lah the baton has been passed on to Najib .
    The other thing about this so called Mr opposition is that he is responsible for May 13 to happen . He played into the hands of Razak and Harun Idris or in collaboration with them ? When the DAP won big after the GE , Razak and HI were planning for a coup de tat and LKS provided them with just what they needed , a victory parade which was indeed unnecessary and which provide the spark to ignite the riots of which it was planned .
    Tunku reminded Razak not to approve the permit required for the victory parade , when Tunku was about to leave KL for Kedah , Razak was overhead over the phone "approved "
    So Mr Lim many have forgotten what actually happen that day May 13 1969 and many younger generation people are not aware of the role you played in 1969 which saw the hopes and dreams of the Chinese people washed away .Today , to them you are their super hero , but not to people who have gone thru that darkest hour of Malaysian history . To me you are the real CHOU KAU of Malaysian Chinese .
    Why didn't you asked for that victory parade after 308 tsunami ? because you knew if you had done that , LGE will be in lock up not the Cheap Minister of Penang .

  21. Xie Ann

    They already have lion in the form of Karpal.
    So they need tigers.
    Actually, it's so apt. Their antics are like in the circus.
    Yep. Anwar, Lims et al were crying for Abdullah's blood.
    But they later realised a weak Abdullah is so much better than Najib.
    Poor calculation.
    Did you notice RPK and Susan Loone for example has suddenly become mute on Abdullah.
    And Haris Ibrahim ran a poll to make Abdullah stay.
    As though Haris matters.

  22. Those PR leaders applaud of AAB parting shot of "a warning against a return to the old ways.” is because they are running scare of Najib iron fists. Their balls carrying remarks for AAB is to trap Najib to be humble so that they can eat him up like what they have done to Pak Lah.

    Thats why they are building those tiger park......

  23. Just after one year of becoming the Cheap Minister of Penang LGE's head have become very swollen :

    a)It was reported Thursday that Lim had lashed out at critics of his proposed tiger park project, saying they should come up with constructive criticism.
    Lim said their objections should be substantiated with facts and not just emotions, otherwise they were just wasting their time.
    "Lashed out at critics " LOL!! OMG !!!
    b)JOHOR BARU, March 26 — PKR’s Mohammad Fairus Khairuddin, who has been embroiled in graft allegations in Penang, has been detained by the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission for questioning.
    The Penang Deputy Chief Minister I was stopped by Immigration officers at the Customs, Immigration and Quarantine (CIQ) complex at about 11 last night.
    He was subsequently handed over to Johor MACC officers.

    Remember what I posted the other day about the impending explosion of PR in Penang ! !
    More on the way I am told !

  24. Forgot to add
    c)Lim denies Jeff Ooi has resigned as COS

    PENANG, March 25 - Penang Chief Minister Lim Guan Eng has denied talk that his Chief of Staff (COS) Jeff Ooi has resigned from the post.

    "He still plays an important role in assisting me, specifically in finding ways to further develop Penang," he told reporters here when asked about a news report today that Jeff Ooi would be handing in his letter of resignation soon to leave the post.
    Lim had earlier launched Penang's official tourism website

    He added that plenty of rumours were going around that Bukit Bendera MP Lew Chin Tong would also be stepping down from his staff team and that all these were not true. - Bernama

    Now its Jeff Ooi and Liew Chin Tong who has to come to deny they are quitting , however Jeff did add , when my task is finished he is stepping down ! Why did he have to say that if he's not quitting ?

    In Perak as Killer mentioned its the Ngeh and the Ngas who are calling the shots .
    In Penang , its the Lims ( father and son ) others no say just like before in other states ! Even Karpal as state chairman being irrelevant in decision making , not consulted !

  25. " transitional " and " never meant to be permanent. "

    Guan Eng: Jeff Ooi's position only " transitional"
    Himanshu Bhatt

    GEORGE TOWN (March 25, 2009) : Penang Chief Minister Lim Guan Eng clarified today that the position of Jeff Ooi as his chief of staff has always been “transitional”.

    Stressing that Ooi, who is also Jelutong MP, has done a satisfactory job in the state government, Lim described reports that Ooi nay resign as “speculations”.

    Ooi is spearheading Penang’s wireless internet connectivity project, and also oversees a special task force to deal with issues on telecommunications towers in the state, Lim said, when commenting on a report in a Chinese vernacular newspaper on Tuesday that Ooi may quit his post as his chief of staff.

    According to the report, Ooi has not seen eye-to-eye on certain issues with the state leadership.

    He added however that Ooi’s appointment and that of Bukit Bendera MP Liew Chin Tong as advisor on policy matters to the chief minister were never meant to be permanent.

    LGE as CM is also transitional and never meant to be permanent.

  26. chaptokam, re your comments of 5:51 PM, March 26, 2009, it was the then-opposition Gerakan Party members who provoked the Malays in their victory parade, not DAP. This fact was brought out by Dr Kua in his 'May 13' book.

    ;-) I know you want to smash into DAP by blaming LKS, but let's at least get our info factually correct.

    And the rest, let's not make childish comments about the Tiger Park - okay, it has been acknowledged that wasn't a brilliant idea ... and that's what should be commented upon but let's avoid the budak2-punya comments lah.

    And what makes you people assume my response to Ulan Bator's comment of 11:58 AM, March 26, 2009 that he/she was 1 in 3 correct about his accusations of me, meant that 'I hate Anwar'?

    Maybe I admire Dr M? Or, 'love' Najib? wakakakakaka