Friday, September 19, 2008

The REAL story of May 13 (part 2)

The REAL story of May 13 (part 2)
Posted by Super Admin
Thursday, 18 September 2008 11:35

They say those who forget history are doomed to repeat its mistakes. In light of the recent sabre-rattling by those in Umno and the warning by the Armed Forces Chief, Malaysia Today feels compelled to republish an old article by Raja Petra Kamarudin that was published in Harakah on 24 September 1999.


Raja Petra Kamarudin

UMNO is at it again! They are going round the country saying that keADILan and PAS have allowed the National Mosque to be used by non-Muslims to attack Muslims. UMNO politicians and Pusat Islam officials have likened the non-Muslims to “unclean” people because of their pork-eating and liquor-drinking; so they should not have been allowed into the mosque.

Maybe these narrow-minded people have not noticed the daily busloads of foreign tourists visiting the National Mosque as part of their itinerary? Have these foreign (non-Muslim) tourists been screened whether they eat pork or drink liquor before being allowed into the mosque? I bet not!

UMNO adopted this very dangerous strategy once, 30 years ago, back in 1969, which resulted in the infamous May 13 racial riots. Now they are doing it again. It was a very narrow-minded and short-sighted strategy then. It still is now -- maybe even more so now seeing that we have entered the borderless cyber age and are about to enter a new millennium.

Race and religion should no longer be used to separate Malaysians in the divide-and-rule policy of the Barisan Nasional government. The Malays, Chinese and Indians must protest strongly and reject this outdated racial politics that is extremely dangerous and can disrupt the peace and stability of this multi-racial, multi-religious country of ours. UMNO is saying one thing to the Malays, and the opposite to the non-Malays. This is the height of hypocrisy.
Do any of you know the REAL story behind May 13 -- how is started, why it was started, and who started it? If not, then let me take you down memory lane.

Contrary to what the (local) history books try to tell us, May 13 was NOT about Malay and Chinese rivalry. It may have eventually ended that way, but that definitely was not how it started out. May 13 was basically a Malay political struggle with racialism used as a camouflage.

To understand May 13, we need to go back to the pre-Merdeka days to see how independence was achieved and how the first leaders of independent Malaya were groomed to take over running the country.

The British knew that, one day, they would have to grant independence to Malaya. India, Indonesia, the Philippines, and many countries around this region had already gained independence from their colonial masters. In 1946, the independence movement in Malaya had also started, giving birth to the first Malay political party, UMNO. It was a matter of time before the British would have to give in to the demands of the Malays.

The British thought that the best way to grant independence to Malaya, yet still have some control over their old colony, would be to groom the leaders who would take over and educate them the British way so that they would soon become more English than the Englishman.

In the mid 1940s, the British doors were thrown open to the Malays and the first batch of Malays was brought over to England to receive an English education. These were mostly the sons of the elite and royalty -- Tengku Abdul Rahman, Tun Razak, and many more future leaders of Malaya. Tengku Rahman was definitely given special treatment by the British to the extent he was the only student in Cambridge history ever allowed to own a car on campus (everyone else rode bicycles). He drove a MG sports car and spent his years enjoying the lifestyle of the rich and famous.

Eventually these young graduates of an English education were brought back to Malaya and given government posts as part of their training to one day take over the reins of power. As an example Tengku became a District Officer in Kedah, a post normally reserved for the "white man".

Needless to say, these English educated Malays enjoyed all the trappings of England including cricket, rugby, tea-at-four, brandy-after-dinner, and so on, not to mention a day at the dog races.

Eventually, Merdeka was won and, in 1957, the local Malays took over running the government. But it was merely a changing of the skin colour. The management style remained the same. It was Merdeka without losing the English influence. In fact, as mentioned earlier, the Malays of this era tended to be more English than even the Englishmen.

It was now twelve years after Merdeka and the "young Turks" in UMNO were getting restless and wanted a change of leadership. These young Turks such as Hussein Onn and Dr Mahathir Mohamad had no sentimental attachments to the British, as they were educated in India and Singapore respectively. They were also angry that Tengku Abdul Rahman surrounded himself with Chinese businessman.
Mahathir made this point very clear in his letter to the Tengku which goes as follows:

"You have become so powerful, both by virtue of your office and by popular acclaim, that UMNO has become subservient to you. UMNO is being held together, not because the members share your ideas on politics, but through a system of patronage and disguised coercion based on Government rather than party authority.

A feeling of power normally grips those who wield patronage, a feeling that they can mould and shape people and opinions any way they please. The leaders of UMNO, the senior partners of the Alliance Government, have succumbed to this disease and, believing that they no longer need to heed the opinions of their supporters, they disregard them at every turn.

Laws have been hurriedly passed without prior consultation with the representatives who have had to "sell" these laws to the people. Tax innovations have been made and discarded with complete disregard for the disrupting effect on the public. In the main, Parliamentary sittings are regarded as a pleasant formality which afford members an opportunity to be heard and quoted, but which have absolutely no effect on the course of the Government. The sittings are a concession to a superfluous democratic practice. Off and on, this strength is used to change the constitution. The manner, the frequency, and the trivial reasons for altering the constitution have reduced this supreme law of the nation to a useless scrap of paper.

Your Ministers and the Cabinet are vested with this decision-making authority. It is obvious that only the most capable and experienced should be made Ministers and be in the Cabinet. But independent Malaysia has chosen to treat membership of the Cabinet as a reward for loyalty to party chiefs and acceptability to the Prime Minister. Once appointed, no amount of dereliction of duty could affect the position of a Minister. On the other hand, even if the Minister performs well, failure to remain on good terms with the Prime Minister means removal from the Ministry.

Your Government of mediocre people is bereft of ideas, is unable to understand the limits of their authority, and is generally unable to rule. All the while, however, your Government is busy on devices to perpetuate itself. These devices are so transparent and so lacking in subtlety that they achieve just the opposite effect.

May I remind you, Merdeka has brought power and wealth to the new Malay elite. Politics is found to be the panacea. It provides a shortcut to everything. It makes possible the attainment of positions of immense power. These Malays are in a position to acquire riches.

At first, this might seem grossly unfair. These few Malays - for they are still only a very few - have waxed riches not because of themselves, but because of the policy of a Government supported by a huge majority of poor Malays. It would seem that the efforts of the poor Malays have gone to enrich a select few of their own people. The poor Malays themselves have not gained one iota. With the existence of the few rich Malays, at least the poor Malays can say that their fate is not entirely to serve the rich non-Malays. From their point of view of racial ego, and this ego is still strong, the unseemly existence of Malay tycoons is essential.

The various races in Malaysia are differentiated not merely by ethnic origin, but also by many other characteristics. These characteristics are important. How these characteristics develop is another matter, but when races compete in a given field, these characteristics play an extremely important role. The Jews, for example are not merely hook-nosed, but understand money instinctively.

The possession of these characteristics means little until different races come into contact with each other. Jewish stinginess and financial wizardry gained them the commercial control of Europe and provoked an anti-Semitism, which waxed and waned throughout Europe through the ages.

The first thing that comes to mind is that the vast majority of Malays are feudalistic and wish to remain so. A revolution, which starts off by preaching the destruction of the established monarchical order, will therefore fail. It will not win the support of the majority of orthodox Malays. In any case, the monarch has done no real harm to the Malays or to anyone else. The maintenance of the system is no doubt costly, but being separated from power, the ruler cannot constitute a tyranny. Besides, a Malaysia without rulers would mean the complete eclipse of the Malays. It is the rulers who have in the past furnished and continued to present the Malay character of Malaysia. Remove them, and the last vestige of traditional Malaysia would disappear. It is essential therefore that the monarchy remains.

To take on an adversary when it seems to be beyond one's capacity is courageous. To calculate and assess one's chances first is to exhibit cowardice. Time and again this inability or unwillingness to measure the odds against them has led to defeat and disaster for the Malays. The courageous or brave Malay is usually foolhardy, and because he is likely to do things without thinking of the consequences, the average Malay treats him with fear and respect. The ordinary man knows that it is not worthwhile to incur his displeasure and that it is safer to let him have his own way. The ordinary man therefore represents the other extreme when principle is easily set aside for the sake of safety.

Even feudalism can be beneficial if it facilitates changes. The political Rajas of today can, therefore, institute change if they themselves are willing to change. Such a change would spread rapidly. If the indications are that there should be a change in the value system and ethical code, then the leaders can lead the way with the certainty that they will be followed by the masses. In a feudal society, if the leaders fail, then there is little hope for the masses."

Comments (41)
written by Naha, September 18, 2008 11:55:24

The greatest irony of this is, if you change the recipient's name:

...letter to the Tengku which goes as follows:


...letter to Mahathir which goes as follows:


...letter to Abdullah which goes as follows:

then it would still be valid.

What utter hypocrisy of UMNO's leaders.
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written by cahaya, September 18, 2008 11:55:36

May God bless RPK for his courage. We continue to pray for his early release as well as for all other peace-loving law-abiding Malaysians detained under ISA. May God intervene in these difficult days.

For those who wish to read another account of the May 13, 1969 racial riots in Malaysia, here is an excellent book. Available at MPH bookstores.

May 13: Declassified Documents on the Malaysian Riots of 1969.
Dr Kua Kia Soong, Suaram, 2007

This is an analysis of documents declassified at the Public Records Office, London, after the lapse of the 30-year secrecy rule. The documents provide the only available confidential observations and memoranda by British and other foreign embassy operatives based on their intelligence and contacts with local officials and politicians. These documents clearly show who were responsible for the violence and pose the question why the security forces allowed the violence to go on.

The May 13 riots were by no means a spontaneous outburst of violence between Malays and Chinese but rather a planned coup d’etat by the ascendant state capitalist class against the Tunku-led aristocracy. The author discusses the contradictions of the post-Independencec Alliance racial formula and traces the rise of this new Malay capitalist class which has ruled Malaysia since 1969.

About the author: Kua Kia Soong is a director and founding member of human rights organisation, Suaram. He was a Member of Parliament for Petaling Jaya (1990-95), a former political detainee during Operasi Lalang (1987-89) and former lecturer at the National University of Singapore (1978-79).

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written by DreamLady, September 18, 2008 11:57:52

Raja petra, thank you for the article. I remember your said once that, though you might not be around, but your work is on auto-pilot.

Please, stay strong for yourself, for your family, and for all those who love and cherish you. In God's speed, you shall be out soon !! We pray for your speedy release..
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written by justinlian, September 18, 2008 12:18:26

I believe in Anwar that he has the numbers.
And Im sure he is waiting for something to happen.
Maybe another big waves coming in.
Let us all pray and see.

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written by froggy, September 18, 2008 12:23:39

What Would Be BN’s Acceptable Symbol For “Nation-In-Distress” Then?

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written by froggy, September 18, 2008 12:25:13

The September 16 double bluff
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written by Jay Krish, September 18, 2008 12:37:28

Godspeed RPK!
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written by indianputra, September 18, 2008 12:38:35

I know and I will get lots of bricks thrown at me. Yet, I, as well as the entire rakyat must get some clarification.

* Forget about the REAL story of May 13th. My question is what is the REAL story of September 16th.?

The entire Malaysians were waiting and hoping for a regime change on September 16th. Nothing happened? We were told and promised that Anwar will take over the Government on September 16th. Even RPK was willing to be caught under ISA hoping on September 16th, he will be released if Anwar takes over the Government. Nothing happened.

There were excuses like the BN Parlimentarians trip to Taiwan, ISA blitz and even Anwar wanted to meet the PM? Why? Why all these lame excuses?

Tell us upfront the entire picture. Tell us that PR do not have the 31 MP's from BN ready to cross over. Tell us upfront whatever is happening. The Rakyat is intelligent and will understand. Stop giving us high hopes and dash it down, the way BN always do.

PLease MT readers, you too are feeling the same. Don't tell me that I am the BN Cybertrooper or whatever. I am not. Just putting into words, my thoughts.
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written by Mik, September 18, 2008 12:49:57

It looks like UMNO was corrupt from the beginning. After 50 years, it just got worse. Tun Mahathir should start reading back his vision 2020 and this letter just to refresh his memory. We all know he has memory lapse.

Indianputra, relax la. just wait and see. If it happens, it happens. If it doesn't happen, well, just too bad. Wait for another 4 years and vote again. Anwar has to go against the whole government machinery and its vast funds. It wont be easy. If he fails, well, he can try again. At least he tried.
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written by tino_chan1988, September 18, 2008 13:10:49

God bless you, RPK.

We will continue to pray for your release.
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written by sjs, September 18, 2008 13:19:55

Fellow Malaysians,


Let us keep our minds focused to our original goal. The quick release of Raja Petra from ISA detention! We request all Malaysians to streamline their course of actions to the various factors at stake in order for Raja Petra Kamarudin to be released at the shortest possible time! The uniformity of our thoughts and the line of actions must adhere to the following several factors, in order of their importance!

1) To prevent and condemn the imminent detention of Anwar Ibrahim under ISA

2) To prevent and condemn the imminent detention of other opposition and defecting MPs, under ISA

3) While we do not know the actual number of MPs defecting to the PR, one can only naturally presume a figure to be in excess of required majority to form the government, we must be concerned about attempts being made, by the BN government, to induce those defecting MPS with huge monetary rewards! The ACA must be advised to investigate the right people instead of the defecting MPs. The rumour mongers and instigators from the BN government have started their tricks again! We must echo the same concerns to fight their lies!

4) Attempts by the government to introduce Emergency rule, if all else fail. We must not let this happen. We must constantly make our voices heard by the rulers of this nation! Calls by the people to the military to remain neutral would help!

5) If the change of government is affected by a vote of no-confidence on Oct 13th, rather than what is earlier anticipated, then we must make sure no attempts will be made by anyone to engage in disruptive activities that will impede the quick release of Raja Petra!

Let us pray together for Raja Petra to be released quickly and let him spend the first day of Shawal with his family and friends!

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written by temenggong, September 18, 2008 13:32:01

Badawi tries to get the army to support his position but I doubt that under the present Agong that is likely.

The only power he has is to arrest Anwar and some MPs under the ISA to thwart the takeover. But I hope Pakatan has a secondline PM in Waiting.

Still it takes a simple no confidence vote in parliament to unseat Badawi! This can be done with or without Anwar. That can happen when parliament sits again in ten days time!
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written by sjs, September 18, 2008 13:32:49

Mahathir recently said that Abdullah is no match to Anwar. He also said that Anwar can even convince the devil to join him!

And everyone including Mahathir knows that Mahathir will be the last person in this world who will join Anwar. Ask him to deny this! In fact he will not join at all! If asked to choose between death and joining Anwar, Mahathir will choose death!

Since all the devils can be convinced by Anwar, with the exception of devil Mahathir, that makes Mahathir the greatest devil amongst all! This is by Mahathir’s own words!
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written by RitchieLow, September 18, 2008 13:42:14

The former prime minister (Tun Dr Mahathir Mohammad) once told me that we should not teach people what they do not know … this was a way to ensure that the people can be controlled.
--Datuk Dr Jeffrey Kitingan
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written by slash n burn, September 18, 2008 13:49:21

MahaEvil, you are destined to die a bitter man. But I have no doubt you will be gnashing in hell.
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written by yeechut, September 18, 2008 14:07:27

Thanks Pete. I am touched. I thought I won't see this article till we get you out of ISA.

Hang in there. We will be with you till the end. I attended the 916 rally at Kelana Jaya Stadum. It was one of the most memorable day in my life. To me 916 has already happened. I have written about it here
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written by K W Waran, September 18, 2008 14:09:40

Dearest Bro' Labisman and Super Admin et al,

Thank you very very much for the timely release of the Part 2 of the May 13 1969 Mayhem that took place. Though, I still very much wish that YM RPK is with and amongst us rather than where he is now.

I know that its bad to curse. But, I am to this very second, bloody cursing that b**t**d s/o ALBlur. If I see him anywhere, anywhere for that matter, bloody hell, he is going to be in for it. He would have to urgently see that other b**t**d, Boer Toyo to help reconstruct his entire dental configuration.

There is a saying, "Let sleeping dogs lie". Today, those b**t**ds have kicked awakened the very Devil, Tiger, Lion, Dragon, Rhino, you name it, in most of us that all logic and reasoning is almost flying out of the window, so to speak.

My humble take, Folks, all those b**t**ds are doomed. Period.

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written by fergie, September 18, 2008 14:21:26

Thank you, Super Admin, for posting Part 2 of our dear RPK's article. It breaks my heart to think he has been taken away from us so cruelly. Many thanks also to the whole MT Team for carrying on his good work. Prayers and thoughts are with RPK and his family and the MT Team. May his release come soon.
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written by truthbespoken, September 18, 2008 15:13:10

Dear ALL,

While most Malaysians are intent on moving forward as Malaysians since the last GE, Mahathir and his cohorts are just as intent on backtracking us to his old and unchanging racist ways on how Malaysia must continue to become..

What Mahathir failed to realize is that he is now very much behind time in terms of method and approach and definitely no more in sync with the pulse of the Nation! In other words, this wayward old man has become irrelevant to a new and modern Malaysia. He had done much harm to the soul of the country then by destroying her original social fabric since Independence and he still wants to do it now! To many Malaysians, Mahathir have become nothing more than a present day nuisance factor.

At the rate he is still going against the grain, against the natural positive progression of our country, I can foresee that he will be a very unhappy man when he passes on. In fact, I hope he will be recorded in our history books as the man who set the wrong pace and had divided all Malaysians for more than two decades! He should forever remain etched in the dumps of our history books for his racist divide-and-rule policies on our wonderful Country! I wish that he will just quickly fade away and spare the good Malaysians the agony…..

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written by Counterpointer, September 18, 2008 15:30:59

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written by sjs, September 18, 2008 15:48:15


Fellow Malaysians,


Let us keep our minds focused to our original goal. The quick release of Raja Petra from ISA detention! We request all Malaysians to streamline their course of actions to the various factors at stake in order for Raja Petra Kamarudin to be released at the shortest possible time! The uniformity of our thoughts and the line of actions must adhere to the following several factors, in order of their importance!

1) To prevent and condemn the imminent detention of Anwar Ibrahim under ISA ( we need to monitor closely for 3 days,ie, 18th, 19th and 20th September)

2) To prevent and condemn the imminent detention of other opposition and defecting MPs, under ISA ( also for the same three days)

3) While we can confirm with certainty now, that Anwar has the numbers,since has has asked the minority government of Abdullah Badawi to convene an Emergency Parliament, by 23rd September, we must be concerned about attempts being made, by the BN government, to induce those defecting MPS with huge monetary rewards! The ACA must be advised to investigate the right people instead of the defecting MPs. The rumour mongers and instigators from the BN government have started their tricks again! We must echo the same concerns to fight their lies!

4) Attempts by the government to introduce Emergency rule, if all else fail. This can come about only if the minority government of Abdullah Badawi resort to detaining Anwar under ISA. We must not let this happen. We must constantly make our voices heard, by the king and the rulers of this nation! Calls by the people to the military to remain neutral would help! We must always understand the intervention of the king is necessary on 24th. September, if Abdullah fails to convene the emergency parliament.

5) In an unlikely scenario, if the change of government is affected by a vote of no-confidence on Oct 13th, rather than what is earlier anticipated, then we must make sure no attempts will be made by anyone to engage in disruptive activities that will impede the quick release of Raja Petra!

Let us pray together for Raja Petra to be released quickly and let him spend the first day of Shawal with his family and friends!

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written by jonestation, September 18, 2008 16:09:54

i am not a religous man but i shall pray for you Pete, God bless you and your family, and new Malaysia.
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written by 1351, September 18, 2008 16:23:05

It seems like you are crying foul indiaputra much like Ku Li is with UMNO's transition of power. Tell you what bud, your gloom will be lifted - all that is required is a little patience and as for Ku Li, his quest for the premiership will never materialise after the short exchange between PM and his deputy.

Events of yesterday signals to me Najib is currently defacto PM - no surprise there with Badawi always a lame duck the moment he voiced out a date for handover. Ku Li may wail all he wants, the RAHMAN prophecy is thus complete. In very hush tones, Badawi did suggest a date earlier than one suggested previously and my suspicion is that this wasn't a decision hatch just yesterday but one made, and kept between No.1 & No.2 for a while now. If we were to consider recent ISA detentions, how swift and precise the orders were carried out, the viciousness is more a mark of Najib's and totally out of character for Dollah 'lembik'. And the shift in portfolio only goes to confirm my own fear - the most crucial portfolio is now in the hands of En.Rosmah while Puan Najib is gleefully thankful for the ascension, albeit silently.

Well folks, no far fetch forecast from yours truly but let it be said, defacto or whatever you want to call it, Najib's ascension is only for the interim. From now till the next mandate or at a point when Pakatan can truly show its hand, it is what it is for the moment.

Indiaputra - you'll be the first to know the moment I sniff any major play in the making

Enough said, selamat berbuka to all Muslim brethens
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written by cwy, September 18, 2008 17:26:53

Why does Abdullah likt the number, 13 so much?
His official car is numbered 13?
Is he reminding Malaysia of May 13?
Is it a threat or a remorse?
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written by sjs, September 18, 2008 18:49:39

Fellow Malaysians,


Musa Hasan was investigated on allegations of corruption related to the release of three members of illegal betting syndicates; however, Attorney-General Abdul Ghani Patail ordered the Anti-Corruption Agency to close the investigations in July 2007 for “lack of evidence.” Two months later, it was announced that Musa would receive a two-year extension of his term to 13 September 2009, despite having reached the mandatory retirement age.

Currently heartless and resting at home, in a makeshift command post, delegating instructions to “the ever so ready to obey his master” Deputy IGP, Ismail Omar!

As anticipated, the final game will be played by these three musketeers! Their game must begin tonight and the next two nights! Otherwise they will not be able to play any more games, ever again in their lives!

Not only they will be unemployed, but the agony and reality of loosing old age pensions and gratuities compel them to fight their last battle! Why shouldn’t they fight! They have everything to loose if they don’t fight. They too are going for broke!

All clear signals have been given by Abdullah. While the opponent, Anwar Ibrahim never looked intimidated, and has upped the ante by calling for the convening of Emergency Parliament, the three musketeers are shaking under their pants, for this is the first time in their lives, they are unsure whether they will win this last game, that they are going to play in their lives!

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written by Christopher, September 18, 2008 19:00:52

Can you even think of giving a gift to someone and then to demand it back later? Well, that’s what Mahathir did. The great Tunku, in gratitude to the British for giving Malaysia its Independence without even having to fight for it, gave Carcosa, now Sri Carcosa, to the British government as a token of appreciation. Only a person like Mahathir, to show his Malayness to the Malays, and to show that he was part of them who fought the British to get this country back, took back Sri Carcosa and which at the same time, insulted all men of goodwill in Malaysia. Mahathir should tell Malaysians how he fought the Japanese and the British to get back Malaya or even to get Independence for Malaya. Without doing anything for Independent Malaya, he could not understand why the Tungku gave Carcosa to the British.
I was one of them who at that time felt ashamed that I was a Malaysian – I will not take back a gift to someone, even if I felt angry with that person later, would you???

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written by Heaven8402, September 18, 2008 20:07:34

We should not wholly blame UMNO for riot of 513. We, the rakyat should be partly blamed as well for being too narrow-minded, too sensitive, too naive, too stubborn, too arrogant and the list goes on and on.
The worst part is we chosed this goverment but the best part is its about to change. The answer is on the rakyat not the current goverment; DO WE WANT TO CHANGE?
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written by cruzeiro, September 18, 2008 20:16:58

Sorry to say it, but you are still are being as naive as you were,
when you first appeared on MT .......
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written by 1351, September 18, 2008 21:15:11

Hey there cruz, haven't cross path for a while.

We need to cut indi some slack - he really sounds dishearthen though, absolutely missing the mark 9/16 was merely a focal point.

Hope you are keeping well.
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written by sjs, September 18, 2008 21:29:15

Fellow Malaysians, this is a good read from Param Cumarasamy to Syed Hamid on the detention of Raja Petra and the rest. Please read it. Because it is too long split into 3 parts:

Open Letter to Syed Hamid from Param Cumaraswamy

September 15, 2008
YB Datuk Seri Syed Hamid Albar
Kementerian Hal Ehwal Dalam Negeri, Malaysia
Blok D2, Parcel D
Pusat Pentadbiran Kerajaan Persekutuan
62546 Putrajaya
YB Datuk Seri,

Administrative detentions without trial of:
Raja Petra Kamaruddin – blogger
Tan Hoon Cheng – journalist
Teresa Kok – Member of Parliament and State Legislative Councilor

The arrests and detentions without trial and the circumstances leading to the same of the abovenamed three under the Internal Security Act 1960 (ISA) on Sept. 12, 2008 are a source of grave concern for the rule of law and democratic values in Malaysia. All three are reported to have been detained under Section 73 (1) of the Act for purposes for police inquiry on grounds that there were reasonable cause to believe that they were acting in a manner prejudicial to the security of Malaysia. Under the same Act they can be detained for 60 days thereafter you as Minister could sign a detention order for further detention up to 2 years which could further be renewed. All such detentions are without trial and without any form of judicial supervision.

A further cause for concern is over the show cause letters sent to three newspapers by your Ministry to explain within one week for manipulation of sensitive issues, reporting a racially sensitive statement made by a politician belonging to the dominant political party currently in control of the government and for reporting that the present Inspector General of Police had been "paralysed" after undergoing a bypass surgery. Those notices were served on the newspapers under the Printing Presses and Publication Act 1984, a legislation for annual licensing of newspapers by the Executive.

Obviously if their explanations are not found satisfactory by you the annual licenses issued for these newspapers would be revoked. The decision to revoke is final and under the Act cannot be questioned "by any court or any ground whatsoever". Service of such notices leaves a chilling effect on freedom of the press.

With regard to the arrests and detentions in the case of Raja Petra Kamaruddin, there are two charges for sedition and criminal defamation pending against him for the very news items posted in his blog. Without awaiting the trials on these charges detaining him administratively would be seen as interfering into the due process of the court and prejudging the criminal charges and could amount to contempt of court. Such detention could also be seen as preventing him from adequately preparing his defences to the two criminal charges.
In the case of journalist, Tan Hoon Cheng, though it is a relieve that she has since been released after 18 hours of detention yet to subject her to such arrest and detention under the ISA for having recorded and reported accurately in the newspaper what is now alleged to be sensitive is beyond belief. What is of serious concern was the person who uttered the alleged sensitive remark, Datuk Ahmad Ismail, is currently under investigation for sedition. To date, it is reported that the police had not completed their investigations. Yet how in the interim the journalist who reported could be a threat to the security of the State is most puzzling. How did the police come to believe that she could be a threat to State security when the investigations were incomplete? Your clarification at your press conference on Sept. 13 that she was detained partly because of "alleged threats on her personal safety" is untenable. A country where the government has been resisting legislation to provide whistle blowers protection could resort to arbitrary detention under such a draconian legislation to provide such protection is shocking indeed.

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written by sjs, September 18, 2008 21:29:53

Why the journalist who merely recorded and reported the statement was subjected to such detention when the person who uttered the statement is still not charged under the Sedition Act is yet to be explained. Your contention is that Datuk Ahmad has been suspended for three years from his political party meant that action has been taken against him. This is most unsatisfactory. The suspension from his political party was an internal party procedure. No action as yet has been taken against Datuk Ahmad by the State for an offence against the State. In any event the fact that UMNO (the political party) suspended him must necessarily mean that what she reported was true and correct.
In the case of Member of Parliament, Teresa Kok's detention, you were reported to have said in the press conference that "She started a very sensitive issue with the question of the 'azan' and it should be stopped". She vehemently denied these allegations from the beginning and from media reports of various persons including the mosques concerned there appears abundance of evidence to support her denial. Yet todate no action seems to have been taken against the former Chief Minister of the State of Selangor, Khir Toyo, who lost his seat and his government in the March 8, general elections. It was he who made the allegations against her which were reported in a vernacular newspaper. Should he not be investigated for the offence of false news under Section 8(A) of the Printing Presses and Publications Act 1984 if not detained under the ISA?

The newspaper which originally published the news too may have committed the same offence. It is learnt that a police report has been lodged against Khir Toyo. What is the state of the investigations? Why detain Teresa Kok in the interim?

These latest developments are reminiscent of what happened in Malaysia in 1987 when 106 were detained under this draconian legislation and four newspapers banned. Those detentions led in the following year to the government's assault on the independent judiciary. It is also reminiscent of how internal dissensions within the dominant political party in power spilled over to violations of human rights and fundamental liberties and rule of law in the nation with the guardian of these values namely the judiciary severely damaged and still not recovered.

There is something most unsettling over the conduct of the police on the investigations of the police reports lodged and the selectivism applied in the actions taken thus far.
As I mentioned in my earlier letter addressed to you on March 24, 2008 regarding the continued detention of the five Hindraf leaders under the ISA detention without trial offend the first principle of the rule of law.

I urge you to without delay take appropriate action to release Raja Petra and Teresa Kok from detention. I also urge you to withdraw the three show cause notices served on the newspapers

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written by sjs, September 18, 2008 21:30:31

I am copying this letter to the Chairperson of the UN Human Rights Council, the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights and the Secretary General of the Commonwealth in which bodies Malaysia is much involved. It is to bring to their attention the fragility of the rule of law in Malaysia and how it is deteriorating. With these developments Malaysia's role in these bodies is tenuous. I hope Malaysia is called upon to account for the violation of the rule of law, human rights and democratic values before these bodies. The Malaysian government must be ashamed of itself. The developments must be a source of embarrassment to YB Dato Seri Mohd Shafie Aqbal who only in August was elected Chair of the EXCO of the Commonwealth Parliamentary Association.

Yours sincerely,
Dato' Param Cumaraswamy
(former UN Special Rapporteur on the Independence of Judges & Lawyers)
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written by Angel, September 18, 2008 21:38:06

While it is good to reflect on history, I believe that the current and future generation will never let this part of history repeat itself. We are wiser now and not able to be manipulated as before.

I believe that we will see radical change for a better Malaysia with our next generation. By the next election we will have millions of new voters to the poll. These would be better educated and knowledgeable than the present voters. They would uphold ideals of transparency, meritocracy and justice. It would be an insult to them to be given benefits if not earned. They are the leaders of tomorrow.

They would also be colour blind where race is concerned. To them all are equal and in partnership they will rule the land. Only then can true racial harmony exist and definitely Malaysia will be a more prosperous and better place to live in. To the future!!
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written by binarytan, September 18, 2008 21:55:39

We should bury this painful experience for Malaysia and never let it happen again. UMNO only knows the way to use racial politics and I suppose this is the oldest tactics. However, Malays are well-educated now-a-days and I do not think there is any racial problems except UMNO creation.

Selangor pig farm,
Azan issue (and put Teresa under ISA),
Islamic issue (RPK pulak kena),
may be next one DSAI as he is opposition,
then may be karpal singh, Lim Kit Siang, then Nik Aziz, with all types of reasons.

Still remember Bandar Mahkota Cheras issue? Do we really need the evil service of UMNO, definitely no.
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written by Loi Bih Siang Benjamin, September 18, 2008 21:58:43

Give Malay Rulers More Power!!

(The Star) - The Tengku Mahkota of Pahang, Tengku Abdullah Sultan Ahmad Shah, wants Umno to make efforts to strengthen the institution of the Malay rulers to enhance its role as the protector of the people, especially the Malays, and Islam.
“It’s not that we want more power but we need to study (the matter) so that this institution is not humiliated, mocked or belittled by anyone,” he said in an exclusive interview with Khabar Pahang, the state government’s official newspaper.
He said the abolition of the immunity of the rulers some time ago had indirectly given the impression that the institution was not on a sound footing and could become irrelevant.
But everyone should realise that the institution of the Malay rulers had played an effective role in the country’s development, he said.
He said that while the nation’s leaders were fighting for independence, the representatives of the Malay rulers had also participated, including in the talks in London.
In this context, it was not a question of who had more power, the executive, the government of the day or the institution of rulers but rather, of the Malay rulers and the ruling party having the spirit to co-exist so that the well-being and sovereignty of the nation were preserved at all times, he added. – Bernama

Dearest Tengku Abdullah Sultan Ahmad Shah :

Peace be with you and may the Almighty Allah protect and greatly bless You and the Royal Household! Amin.

As a humble subject of His Majesty, I received the news with great joy that Malay Rulers are actively seeking power to protect the Malay interests and Islam. It is apparent that behind the facade of protecting Malay interests and Islam, Umnoputras have sought to fatten their coffers, and politics has cheaply become a channel for some megalomaniac Malays to gain wealth, fame and power, outwardly they act as a selfless hero fighting for Malays’ cause, inwardly and secretly they seek to enrich themselves, which is why “money politics” has become so rampant in Umno. The chiefs of each division of Umno throughout Malaysia are “full-time” warlords waiting to be served instead of serving the people. They are served with government projects, money, etc.

for full article:
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written by sengie, September 18, 2008 22:14:04

hi Pete! thanks for all the sacrifices & hard work! With your kind of intelligent, knowledge, influence, network, determination, & many talents you have, you should have been sitting at the high position if you were with BN camp. Thanks for taking the narrow path for the sake of justice, righteous, & the betterment of our beloved Malaysia. Malaysian owe you too much, there's no enough thanks we can say to repay what you have done for the us, God bless.
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written by bigiblue, September 18, 2008 22:36:21

God bless RPK, TK and all those arrested and detained without trial, have faith, keep strong, our prayers and best wishes for your early peaceful release and to be with your loved ones...
The power of prayer is infinite...
Our paryers and thoughts with you all
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written by cruzeiro, September 18, 2008 23:29:05

... and for reporting that the present Inspector General of Police had been "paralysed" after undergoing a bypass surgery

BTW, how many of you have heard of a post CABG (bypass) patient having to go through "physiotherapy" (as reported in the denial of the report)?
As far as I know, they don't - unless they had a post-CABG embolic stroke.
So, I believe that the denial only lent credibility to the report.
Maybe complete bed rest and minor ambulation is called physiotherapy these days - and I could be wrong ....
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written by Tom n Jerry, September 19, 2008 07:06:55

AS long as BN is not yet ousted there is still danger of 513;you all know that expression*like father like son* its the genes running in the family which likes to see people [pitted one against another;thats one of the obvious reason for the recent change in portfolio!how pathetic!
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written by tlashmi, September 19, 2008 10:18:02

I believe that Anwar has the number too... Otherwise why should PM deny to meet him? or reject parliament sessions? and why a sudden move to appoint Najib as Finance Minister?
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written by Sofiyant, September 20, 2008 13:07:55

Pete, you have all the Malaysian supports and prayers behind you. How long this sick cheap mentaly people can hold for too long. We Malaysian are making huge noizes & proudly we are doing it with our sense. Thats the diffence everyday we make. I will never do what BN-UMNO do..eeekkk..too cheap even to imagine me doin it...eeekkkhh!!!

You are true Malaysian a true muslim.
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