Articles, Opinions & Views: Good ones stay in Umno, bad ones take a leap of faith - 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

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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Good ones stay in Umno, bad ones take a leap of faith - Commander S THAYAPARAN (Retired) Royal Malaysian Navy
Saturday, December 15, 2018
Mamakthir's Legacy
Malaysiakini : 'Do remember that dishonesty and cowardice always have to be paid for. Don’t imagine that for years on end you can make yourself the boot-licking propagandist of the Soviet régime, or any other régime, and then suddenly return to mental decency. Once a whore, always a whore.' - George Orwell, ‘As I Please: 1943-1945 Collected Essays, Journalism, and Letters’
COMMENT | Even as I write this, there will probably be more news of Umno members jumping ship. A few well-connected businesspersons of Umno political operatives have been calling me, “advising” me that their benefactors are going to jump ship and they are now part of a new dawn of Malaysian politics. And please, do not get triggered by the term “well-connected businesspersons”. All political parties have these people.
I have lost track of how many Umno rats are leaving the sinking ship. Readers of Malaysiakini have been sending me this bit (with smiley faces) from a piece I wrote in January of this year, about how Umno is afraid that Mahathir is still reshaping Umno. “What is Bersatu if not a reception room for possible Umno candidates who would jump ship if they thought that a weakened Umno would implode or that the current Umno grand poobah would bring the house of cards down which would jeopardise their economic security with his fancy new executive powers if Umno suffered electoral setbacks in the upcoming elections?”
This the game we are committed to play. If you voted for Pakatan Harapan, you must have known this would happen. And if you did not know this would happen, then you prove what Churchill said that the best argument against democracy is having a five-minute conversation with the average voter.
The commentary of this phenomenon has been fascinating in the sense that some pundits act as if this was not the inevitable outcome of the moves by mainstream powerbrokers to oust Najib Abdul Razak. This was never about saving Malaysia but rather about dethroning a kleptocrat who emerged from the breeding ground of mainstream Malaysian politics.

When Kepong MP Lim Lip Eng (photo) reminded Terengganu Bersatu chief Razali Idris to remember his “rakan seperjuangan”, who exactly is he trying to fool? If anything, for most of the people in Bersatu, their comrades have always been the Umno folk who ruled this country since independence.
Umno is not merely about personalities. It is an ecosystem with various organisms which want to impose hegemony for collective profit. This ecosystem can operate under any banner. Bersatu was never part of the movement to reform Malaysia but they were a part of the movement to dethrone Najib.
Razali is right on two counts. The first is that DAP is afraid of a stronger Malay/Muslim voice in parliament. To be specific, they are afraid of a stronger far-right Malay/Muslim voice in their coalition. Any rational person would be. You know who else is worried? PAS is also worried. At this moment, the Malay/Muslim far-right is dominated by Umno and PAS. They have managed to not only define the narrative but also managed to bundle up certain issues (and groups) which have nothing to do with race or religion – broken Harapan promises, for instance – and present them as an existential crisis for the Malay community.
Let us be honest here. There are many Umno people who despise working with PAS. They see this collaboration with PAS leader Abdul Hadi Awang (photo) as the first step to the Pakistanisation of Malaysia. They view Umno’s lack of leadership and perceived weakness as only benefitting PAS.

Jumping to Bersatu means that they do not have to put up with PAS anymore. They join a gang which is slowly growing and they do not have to flash their racial and religious bona fides because when Bersatu becomes the dominant Malay/Muslim powerbroker in Harapan, their Malay base will be satisfied that they are not under threat and they do not have to form allegiances with what is essentially a religious cult.
Instant reformers
The second is that post-May 9, the political climate and interests have changed. Just ask former Umno vice-president Hishammuddin Hussein who is alleged to be the mastermind behind these leaps of faith.
Hishammuddin may deny it, but there is enough circumstantial evidence to point to the fact that the powerbrokers in Umno, the warlords and their various schemes, understand that Umno is finished. Hishammuddin is merely an emissary hoping to gain favour and leverage for a post-Mahathir political landscape.
Some political operatives from Umno tell me that the recent anti-Icerd rally was a wake-up call for them. Without strong Malay leadership, the community is open to radicalisation which is not good for the country in the long run.
Asking these frogs to admit their complicity in 1MDB, as DAP supremo Lim Kit Siang (photo) wants them to do, is the height of political expediency. Do you think any of these Umno frogs would have a problem attacking their former comrades or admitting they were part of the problem?

They would have no problem repenting and most probably would make a religious pilgrimage to wash away their sins. They then would become instant reformers and all will be copacetic on the good ship Harapan. Asking for repentance or acknowledging abetting in the 1MDB scandal is merely a fig leaf for BN redux and the perpetuation of neo-BN policies.
PKR leader Anwar Ibrahim and his moves with Umno’s Nazri Abdul Aziz, for instance, is also a sign that Umno is going to fold or at least lose its once powerful position. While some Harapan people have taken offence to these moves, it is a far healthier stratagem in the short term, though in the long term, it could prove volatile.
Having a Malay caucus which supports the government mitigates the effects of power groups hoping to exploit racial and religious sentiment though it also means compromising on certain issues which, truth be told, is already happening in Harapan. When it comes to leaping frogs and backroom deals, I never thought I would say it but Khairy Jamaluddin and Umno Youth chief Asyraf Wajdi Dusuki have the right of it. They want some sort of reformasi in Umno. They are not alone. Many young Umno members want the same thing. The problem is that the old guard continues to stymie such calls for reformation.

Read my case for Khairy (photo) here: “I think what Khairy gets right is that there is a movement within Umno which understands that the far-right gambit is one of diminishing returns. As long as Bersatu has DAP and PKR as its wingmen, they control the middle-ground.”
Does this mean all is lost? Maybe not. DAP needs to step up its game. It should stop dispensing the Kool-Aid and act as an equal partner. It should not be in a hurry to abandon its principles to appease its Malay partners. Even if they are voted down, they should speak up.
And why do you ask that all this should fall on the DAP? Because they presented themselves as the “New Malaysians”. And when it comes to the frogs, this is the only thing you have to consider - when the Harapan grand poobah says there are "good" people in Umno, those are the ones who want to reform the party.
You may not agree with their ideas of reform or even that Umno could be reformed, but you are hypocritical when there is Bersatu in Harapan. The bad ones are taking that leap of faith into Harapan.
posted by Major D Swami (Retired) @ 2:40 PM  
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