Articles, Opinions & Views: There’re better ways to dissent than #Undirosak - By Commander S THAYAPARAN (Retired) 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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There’re better ways to dissent than #Undirosak - By Commander S THAYAPARAN (Retired) Royal Malaysian Navy
Saturday, January 27, 2018
Malaysiakini : “Whatever question arose, a swarm of these drones, without having finished their buzzing on a previous theme, flew over to the new one and by their hum drowned and obscured the voices of those who were disputing honestly.” ― Leo Tolstoy, ‘War and Peace’
COMMENT | If you want to get your message across that the opposition should change, there are better ways to go about it without spoiling your vote or choosing not to vote. I understand the dissatisfaction young people have for the political mainstream. Most emails I receive are from young Malaysians who are extremely dissatisfied with the current system. When we have young opposition leaders writing op-ed pieces of how their older, more experienced “leaders” tell them why it is important for the former prime minister to lead the charge and like compliant kids, they pass this message on to other young people, I cringe.
There is a difference between advocating for committing to the game the opposition has chosen to play and indoctrinating young people with the poisoned dreams of old men. I realise sometimes that the two are not mutually exclusive, and I did say, I was part of the problem. However, there are more productive ways to demonstrate dissatisfaction for the political mainstream than advocating that voters spoil their votes or not vote at all.

You could help opposition parties like PSM who are going against the mainstream political establishment. Instead of spoiling your vote or not voting because you think mainstream politics sucks – and it does –  you could volunteer to be part of PSM’s election machinery and spread the word to drain the swamp in Putrajaya.
It really does not matter if PSM does not have candidates in your area. They have various criteria for their candidates where they contest, but young people who may not believe in socialism could show their dissatisfaction with the political mainstream by helping parties like PSM win in the areas they are contesting in. This way even if you vote for an opposition candidate in your area, you would be encouraging dissent within the opposition by helping political parties like PSM win.

How 'powerful' is your vote? Undi Power will tell you.

The mainstream political establishment vilifies grassroots political parties like PSM. PSM needs all the help they can get and if the youth vote is with them or if intelligent urban people canvass for them and inspire young people to vote for political parties like PSM, these so-called mosquito parties could become more effective in the political mainstream.
This is a better way to register dissatisfaction with Pakatan Harapan because it enables grassroots-level activism and its concerns, which affect the majority of Malaysians, an avenue of expression in mainstream oppositional politics.

And if people snarkily tell you not to rock the opposition boat, you could give them the finger too because you are encouraging people to vote and voting in PSM would definitely enable the kind of change that the mainstream oppositional politics claims it wants but always has to bow down at the altar of political expediency.
Even if PSM drains votes and the opposition loses the seat, young people who voted for the party are secure in the knowledge that they voted for change even if they failed. I have always maintained that the opposition should embrace PSM into its ranks and what the opposition needs to counter the mainstream politics of Bersatu - and in many ways, the DAP - is a political party like PSM.
Youth tsunami
Young people, instead of advocating that people spoil their vote or not vote, should instead rally around young independent candidates who stand for election or should encourage more young independents to stand for election as a viable alternative to the current ‘old man politics’ in this country.
Why? Because if more young people who are not satisfied with the choices offered would actually take a stand, maybe they would get other young people interested in the democratic process. Who knows, a youth tsunami could establish a young political base of independents aligned with the opposition but grounded firmly in the issues that the opposition often times chooses to ignore because of political, racial and religious expediency.

Think of it this way. If a young candidate is voted in, beating Umno and Harapan candidates, then Harapan has a young vanguard which would calibrate the flexibility of Harapan when it comes to certain issues. If Harapan loses because the youth candidate drains votes, Harapan learns that they should not take the youth vote for granted. The important thing is young people are voting and Harapan learns a lesson.
Of course, for this coming election, it may be too late. Youth movements to be effective needs planning and commitment, so young people who say they are disenchanted with the system should begin the hard work of organising, now. I would do my part by using this platform to ask people to consider young candidates. I have never had a problem, being on the receiving end of opposition opprobrium.
The point here is that people are voting, even though whom they vote for and how they go about expressing their dissatisfaction in the ballot box upsets the opposition and maybe even the Umno establishment.
Lastly, I would like to end this piece with this sentence from Malaysiakini columnist Maryam Lee’s piece, “Well, here's news. If allowing BN to win in elections means national treachery, that would mean a lot of people have been selling out their country for the past six decades. “ I have been saying this for years.
All I know is that Malaysia will not become a crap-hole country if the opposition loses this election. It will eventually become a crap hole if young people do not rise up and change the system.
posted by D.Swami Gwekanandam @ 10:34 AM  
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