Articles, Opinions & Views: Welcoming racists and bigots into Harapan - By Commander S THAYAPARAN (Retired) Royal Malaysian Navy
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“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

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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Welcoming racists and bigots into Harapan - By Commander S THAYAPARAN (Retired) Royal Malaysian Navy
Tuesday, December 19, 2017
Malaysiakini : “Baldrick, I have a very, very, very cunning plan.” - Blackadder
COMMENT | Blogger Hafidz Baharom rightly asks, who are they (Pakatan Harapan) trying to convince when Harapan loyalists question analysis pointing to a possible BN victory. Especially important is the PAS problem - the one-time bete noire turned ally turned bete noire (again) of DAP.  PAS vice-president Mohd Amar Nik Abdullah is floating the "unimaginable" idea that PAS could lead the country, and while everyone else laughs at them, they are playing the long game.
No doubt, Umno is weak but being in a vulnerable position does not mean that victory is impossible for them especially when the system is rigged in favour of the establishment. Add to this, the opposition is fragmented, spending as much time fighting amongst themselves as they do dealing with issues of race and religion because they do not have a unified message on both.
The problem is that the opposition does not have a clear message for the average citizen – “Bersatu central committee member Tariq Ismail Mustafa (photo) said that rural folks needed to be convinced that ‘change’ can happen, but what exactly does change mean? What are they changing to? Whenever I talk to PSM people, I know exactly what message they are sending to people. A grassroots message that involves how the system oppresses the average citizen, which is linked to the local affairs of the community they are contesting in.”

This, of course, is purely anecdotal but nearly every PAS supporter whom I have spoken to who despises the close friendship between PAS president Abdul Hadi Awang and the Umno regime, will still hold their noses and support the agenda of the PAS leadership, because at this moment in time, it is party over personality. The feeling is the same as those in the GOP (Grand Old Party) who despise Donald Trump and his candidates but who vote for both because of the party Trump claims to represent – the Republicans.
Dismissing PAS as inconsequential is a mistake. In fact, I know that PKR understands this more than any other party in Harapan. Unfortunately for the opposition, Hafidz’s opinion on the dialectic within the Malay community is correct, which brings us to MCA leader Ti Lian Ker’s worry that the DAP is welcoming extreme Malay-centric leaders into Harapan.
Can we just call them bigots and racists? While MCA is in no position to question this move – merely because Umno has become more extreme in its Malay-centric perspective – the reality is that DAP is in no position to do anything about extreme Malay right-wing elements within Harapan. By embracing former prime minister Dr Mahathir Mohamad, his newly-formed party and the desideratum of Bersatu, DAP has forfeited the moral high ground. Malay power structures in the opposition are desperate to bolster their credibility in the Malay demographic. Meanwhile, non-Malay power structures are desperate to secure the Malay vote by any means necessary.

I worry about this – “Here is the thing, though. There is nothing anyone can say that would change people’s mind. I worry about the day when a smart Umno political operative would debate an oppositional political operative and it would be revealed that beyond the 1MDB issue there is not much difference between the opposition and the establishment when it comes to policy and ideology, especially now that Bersatu is in the mix.”
Destabilising Umno
Ti makes a very good point when he asks, “Is DAP going to be responsible for empowering Perkasa later, the way they have empowered PAS before?” The only reason why PAS is mainstream is because of the pragmatism of the late Tok Guru Nik Aziz Nik Mat (photo) and the equilibrium that the DAP managed to create within the disparate alliance.

However, the signs were always present that the extreme elements within PAS were waiting patiently to make their move. There can be no denying that DAP, as the sole mainstream oppositional voice of non-Malays, enabled PAS.
In hindsight, even though the opposition went through their messy break-up, the alliance with PAS demonstrated to Malaysians that it was possible to form and succeed in alternative coalitions, if politicians were willing to work together. It was what Malaysians desperately needed and the so-called marriage of convenience hinted at a possible way beyond Barisan National.
At this point, nobody in the opposition would bat an eyelid if members of the red shirts decided to join the Harapan because they had lost faith in how Umno defended “Malay” rights. I doubt DAP or any other non-Malay political operatives would draw a red line in the sand, and news of these racists and bigots joining Harapan would be met in the same way as how PAS members hold their noses and vote for their party even though they despise the company their leadership keeps.
The real tragedy, of course, is that this may actually work. The “tragedy” will happen after a possible Harapan electoral win, but this is something which in typical Harapan fashion would be dealt with after the Najib regime is vanquished. While Hafidz's contention that Umno scored points with the Jerusalem fiasco, the headscarves brouhaha and PAS in their RU355 dance, this idea that Harapan is open to extreme right-wing Malay elements is also a draw for many within the Malay community who view the Mahathir years as the epitome of Malay power.
More importantly, while the youth vote is floundering for various reasons, the older Malay demographic that is a reliable vote bank for Umno could be turned in favour of the wiliest Malay political operative this country has had - Mahathir. Securing new votes is important but equally important is securing votes in play. We have to keep in mind that all Mahathir has to do to win is to destabilise Umno to the point that the powerbrokers in Umno see no profit in supporting the current Umno grand poohbah. Then all manner of unimaginable ways through reconciliations and reformation could herald the birth of a new Malay power structure favouring the old methods of Umno.
In the land of endless possibilities, unimaginable ways can come to fruition.
posted by D Swami Gwekanandam @ 10:40 AM  

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