Articles, Opinions & Views: Chairman Najib makes his NSC debut by Commander (Rtd) S THAYAPARAN Royal Malaysian Navy
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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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Chairman Najib makes his NSC debut by Commander (Rtd) S THAYAPARAN Royal Malaysian Navy
Wednesday, August 03, 2016
“Any excuse will serve a tyrant.”
- Aesop

Malaysiakini : COMMENT | I feel bad for DAP Petaling Jaya Utara MP Tony Pua concerning his recent run-in with the Malaysian Communications and Multimedia Commission (MCMC). These days, referring to Prime Minister Najib Razak as Malaysian Official Number 1 could get you into trouble. The last time I wrote about the honourable gentleman from PJ Utara I took a swipe at his rhetoric about the twin by-elections and made the claim of how a win or a loss would change very little.
As I said, Najib should resign but will not. “Najib loyalists are wallowing in the fact that Najib’s authoritarian measures ensures his political stability because there are no democratic or legitimate means to oust him from office. What is left are the internal mechanism of Umno which has been greased by the ‘cash is king’ dictum.”
In a recent New York Times piece about the untouchability of Najib and the unnamed plotters who had asked for his resignation, Pua is reported as saying, “They took it for granted that he was a sitting duck. He turned the tables on them.” From the same article, here is a description of our current prime minister: “The bank transfers are not the first scandal to threaten the career of Mr Najib, 63, one of America’s most important allies in Southeast Asia. Over the years, he has been accused of having ties to a murder, taking kickbacks from the purchase of military hardware and helping concoct a criminal prosecution against a rival.
“He has deployed the formidable powers of his office to impede investigations, silence critics, block media outlets and maintain the backing of his largely rural, Muslim base. He has deftly played Malaysia’s brand of money politics, distributing cash to buy party leaders’ loyalty. “As prime minister, he oversees Parliament, the cabinet, the police and the intelligence branch. As president of the governing party, he decides who holds key leadership positions and sits atop a vast patronage system that affects the wealth and livelihood of thousands of people.”
A couple of days ago the National Security Council (NSC) Act 2016 came into force. Did anyone besides the usual suspects bother to read the bill? Did anyone really care? When the Act came into force, a BBC newscaster asked a local pollster if there was any opposition to it and the response was that they were concerns raised by “civil society” because of the dodgy record of the Umno regime. How quaint I thought.
Any impartial security expert local or regional can assure the Malaysian public that there are adequate laws already in existence to handle the threat of terrorism. There is no need for any kind of a security council to facilitate information sharing or security areas, all of which are governed under various other security laws.
The irony, or maybe just the incompetence of this regime’s various security apparatus, is that the IGP concurs with this sentiment and said, “The National Security Council (NSC) Act will not be used to fight crime or militant group Islamic State (IS). This is because enforcement authorities have enough laws to manage crime” - which is in direct contradiction to what Najib said (especially with regards to Islamic terrorism) which is why amongst various other Acts, the NSC Act was created.
An audacious play of tyrant-hood
Reading the description in the New York Times, all fairly well-documented by the Malaysian alternative media, it really seems that the Act changes nothing except giving the prime minster a new title. From the bill: “The Council shall consist of the following members: (a) the Prime Minister as Chairman…”
However the reality is, that besides a fancy title, this Act redefines the powers of the executive and it is not hyperbolic to claim, that with this Act, we are no longer just a third world country or developing country or whatever other nonsensical nomenclature that economist like to use, but rather a dictatorship, which the New York Times reports Donald Greenlees, an authority on Southeast Asia with Australian National University as saying “[Najib] is a throwback to the era of Marcos’s Philippines and Suharto’s Indonesia with ruling families hungry for power and great wealth,” he said. “Imelda had her shoes and Rosmah has her Birkin bags. But the bags are vastly more valuable than the shoes.”
“Why aren’t people protesting on the streets?” an American friend (and registered Republican) asked during a marathon group call with other foreign friends. “Because they are used to laws that most Westerners would find oppressive” chimed a British expatriate and “because these types of laws are the logical extension of our colonial legacy to sustain hegemony,” I said.
"I don't know (about the Act). Because I feel it has nothing to do with me," was a response in a Malaysiakini street survey and indeed this sentiment is far too common, not only in supposedly educated urban polities but in rural constituencies.
The opposition for obvious reasons made the 1MDB scandal the focus of their efforts in the removal of Najib. However, it was a mistake not to galvanise the public when it came to this Act. I do believe that the reason for not opposing this Act as overtly as possible is cultural and religious in nature. Jailed opposition leader Anwar’s attempt at filing an “originating summons” seeking to declare the NSC Act unconstitutional is too little too late. There should have been a massive outcry by the opposition and its supporters working in tandem with any interested group to voice the public discontent before the passing of this Act.
PKR vice-president Tian Chua is right when he says that the law would not be passed if there was no intention to use it but as usual little things like this seem of least concern for the opposition, some of whom have been subjected to such draconian laws.
Indeed, I argued that the NSC Act would have far deeper implications for the future of this country than the 1MDB scandal. We have had numerous financial scandals over the years involving billions of ringgit, from the Perwaja fiasco, to the Bumiputra Malaysia Finance (BMF) imbroglio to the Port Klang Free Zone scandal. Scandals are a plenty with Umno.
However, this new law is perhaps the most audacious play of tyrant-hood by a sitting Umno prime minster. Not only has he militarised Umno, he has done it with very little resistance from the Malaysian polity. Chairman Najib has always had the power of the state to disrupt democratic processes. Everything leading up the allegations by the US Department of Justice was a pantomime of accountability by the Malaysian government but in reality was a whitewash of farcical propositions.
While Chairman Najib assured the public that “the new law is not the same as a declaration of a national emergency, a power which he assured all still remains with the Agong,” he shrugged “off a request by the Conference of Rulers for it to be refined.” What we have here is an instrument that legalises oppression. The unmitigated gall of this regime, or any regime of this type, is to assure us it is for our own good.
The last page and the last paragraph of the Bill I read, under the heading of ‘Financial implications’ states: “This Bill will involve the Government in extra financial expenditure the amount of which cannot at present be ascertained.” Of course.
posted by Major D Swami (Retired) @ 10:27 AM  
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