Articles, Opinions & Views: Merdeka Celeberation & Reflection
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In A Foxhole
“When you're left wounded on

Afganistan's plains and

the women come out to cut up what remains,

Just roll to your rifle

and blow out your brains,

And go to your God like a soldier”

“We are not retreating. We are advancing in another direction.”

“It is fatal to enter any war without the will to win it.”

“Old soldiers never die; they just fade away.

“The soldier, above all other people, prays for peace,

for he must suffer and be the deepest wounds and scars of war.”

“May God have mercy upon my enemies, because I won't .”
“The object of war is not to die for your country but to make the other bastard die for his.

“Nobody ever defended anything successfully, there is only attack and attack and attack some more.

“Fixed fortifications are a monument to the stupidity of man."
“It is foolish and wrong to mourn the men who died.
Rather we should thank God that such men lived.

The Soldier stood and faced God


Which must always come to pass

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He hoped his shoes were shining

Just as bright as his brass

"Step forward you Soldier,

How shall I deal with you?


Have you always turned the other cheek?


To My Church have you been true?"


"No, Lord, I guess I ain't


Because those of us who carry guns


Can't always be a saint."

I've had to work on Sundays

And at times my talk was tough,

And sometimes I've been violent,

Because the world is awfully rough.

But, I never took a penny

That wasn't mine to keep.

Though I worked a lot of overtime

When the bills got just too steep,

The Soldier squared his shoulders and said

And I never passed a cry for help

Though at times I shook with fear,

And sometimes, God forgive me,

I've wept unmanly tears.

I know I don't deserve a place

Among the people here.

They never wanted me around


Except to calm their fears.


If you've a place for me here,


Lord, It needn't be so grand,


I never expected or had too much,


But if you don't, I'll understand."

There was silence all around the throne

Where the saints had often trod

As the Soldier waited quietly,

For the judgment of his God.

"Step forward now, you Soldier,

You've borne your burden well.

Walk peacefully on Heaven's streets,

You've done your time in Hell."

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Merdeka Celeberation & Reflection
Thursday, August 30, 2007
Despite socio-economic transformation, however, the political system in today’s Malaysia is not in essence so different from that of yesterday’s Malaya. The government continues to consist of a Malay dominated multicommunal coalition where other “partners” in the coalition are largely nodding sycophants.

Malaysian society continues to be driven by ethnic rivalries resulting in racial, linguistic, cultural and religious divisions. The clarion call by PAS for the setting up of an Islamic State, Tun Dr Mahathir’s declaration in 2001 that Malaysia was already an Islamic State and now Dato Seri Najib Razak’s assertion that Malaysia had never been a secular State had worsened the racial and religious chasms. Many see this as a repudiation of the social contract of 1957.

The existence of political parties drawn on racial and/or religious lines do not serve the cause of unity. These parties continue to emphasise heavily on communalism to gain political mileage. Chauvinistic politicians pander to communal and religious passions. The brandishing of the keris last year and the display of blood curdling slogans and banners in a political rally in 1987 stand testimony to that. Race and religion are politicised and made use of as convenient tools for personal political advancement at the expense of national unity.

So does the ruthless implementation of the NEP. All right thinking Malaysians should support affirmative action but not when these affirmative actions become discriminatory, chiselled in stone and continue without a time frame in place. As Raja Nazrin had so rightly said, “Malaysians of all races, religion and geographical locations need to believe beyond a reasonable shadow of a doubt that they have a place under the Malaysian sun. ”

That explains why on the eve of 50 years of independece, Prime Minister Abdullah Badawi had to admit that race relations in Malaysia was “fragile”. He described the worsening relationship between the majority Muslim Malays and the minority ethnic Chinese and Indian communities as a “disease” and said it must be tackled openly. “If anything is lacking, then it should be solved together so that there is strength in unity”. (Malaysiakini, 7 Dec, 2006). The national motto “Unity is Strength” has yet to be realised.

Celebration of liberation from colonial rule and of material success must therefore be coupled with sober reflections in the search for success in ethnic and religious unity. Then perhaps within the next 50 years Malaysians can proudly say, “No other people is as wise and prudent as this great nation (Dt 4:6).” From the Catholic Asian News

posted by D.Swami Gwekanandam @ 8:10 PM  
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