Articles, Opinions & Views: Najib's victory in Cameron Highlands - Commander S THAYAPARAN (Retired) Royal Malaysian Navy

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No Atheists
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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Najib's victory in Cameron Highlands - Commander S THAYAPARAN (Retired) Royal Malaysian Navy
Monday, January 28, 2019
Malaysiakini : "No one except him could stitch all the component parties together, even though the PAS president Hadi Awang had previously said that Muslims should choose a Muslim leader over any non-Muslim leader, as a corrupt Muslim leader is better than a clean and honest non-Muslim leader." – Lim Kit Siang
COMMENT | Was last Saturday’s by-election in Cameron Highlands some sort of bellwether? Who knows? Pakatan Harapan did everything in its power to snatch defeat from the jaws of victory. Harapan ran a BN- style campaign, while attempting to provide a veneer of independence as far as “government” machinery was concerned. They had an unlikeable candidate who began with his foot in his mouth and proceeded to demonstrate how not to win friends and influence people.
The big winner was former prime minister Najib Abdul Razak. He used this opportunity to remain relevant and the Harapan establishment gave him ample opportunity to highlight the amateur hour, which seems the only way the Harapan politburo knows how to do things.
Lim Kit Siang proclaimed: ““The first national objective of the Cameron Highlands by-election is therefore for the Cameron Highlands voters to represent the nation to say three "Noes, viz No to Najib, No to Najib's political comeback and No to Najib returning to Putrajaya as prime minister” – which now sounds like a self-fulfilling prophesy. All politics is local and the fact that Harapan's politburo strategy was employing the same BN tactics making of promises – that only the federal government could “help” the people – and then having to defend such statements against people who spoke out against such practices was as misguided as the attempts to outdo PAS and Umno in the race and religion game.
So, does this mean that the people of Cameron Highlands have said: "Yes to Najib, Yes to Najib's political comeback and Yes to Najib returning to Putrajaya as prime minister"? Of course, PAS has claimed that this victory is a rejection of DAP’s so-called divisive politics and, considering the candidate in question, I would have voted for the BN candidate.
And yes this was about race and it boggles the mind why the DAP did not think (first) of getting behind an Orang Asal candidate in the first place. Why give such a symbolic moment away to Umno?

Najib likes to claim he is the king of trolls but what he has demonstrated so far is that he is a far more insightful critic of the Harapan regime than some critics who justify every mistake, slip-up and backpedalling that Harapan does. In other words, Harapan and its supporters are providing Najib will all the ammo he will ever need.
Populist figure
Every time Najib says something, Lim Kit Siang (photo, above) – most often – and various other minions of the Harapan regime will respond, chronicling Najib's malfeasance which everyone knows about but, with continued replays, gives the impression that he is being persecuted by the non-Malays and reinforces a sense of victimhood among the Malay political class.
Instead of addressing the points in his troll posts – which I do not think are particularly trollish – what Harapan does is dredging up issues of the failings of the previous regime. Do you people not understand? Beyond the partisans who are slowly losing interest in the wrongs that BN did, the demographic (that Harapan needs to secure) is more interested in how Harapan can help them with their problems now, and not replaying the worst excesses of the former Umno regime.
Najib rebranding himself as some sort of populist figure, aided and abetted by the intelligentsia in PAS and Umno, demonstrates that the Malay opposition is slowly coalescing around a theme that appeals to the far-right and centrist Malays who are rethinking their support for this neo-BN regime.
Some people are already downplaying the Najib factor in this by-election. Think about this really hard, Harapan. Here, you have a former prime minister facing several high-profile criminal charges and what he has managed to do is become the face of the BN campaign – even when getting brickbats from certain quarters of his own party.
On the other hand, Harapan, which has the government propaganda machinery at its disposal – battle-tested grassroots level activists and, of course, Dr Mahathir Mohamad (who some claimed secured the Harapan victory in the last election) – is still trying to define itself nine months into the new game.

A few Umno insiders who had written Najib off called to express surprise that Najib had managed to “reform” himself on the campaign trail. Conventional Umno wisdom was that Najib was a liability. But, as long as he did not embarrass Umno further, they would consider this a win, even if they had lost. Look, no matter how some pundits were downplaying the DAP's chances, a few Umno strategists I spoke to were extremely worried about this by-election.
Bereft of the machinery of the state, how could Umno win this fight when it was supposed to be theirs for the taking? Nine months into the game, Umno has still not got into the opposition mode – that PAS finds extremely easy to get into, even though they shared state power when they were in Pakatan Rakyat. As one Umno political operative told me, it would be a miracle if "we won considering the big guns Harapan is bringing in".
However, Najib was the star of the show. As one Umno grassroots level activist said, “He interacts with people better now than he did when he was PM." He is putting forth this idea that he is a folk Malay hero who is being crushed by the Malay establishment, which is being hoodwinked by the Chinese, evangelical DAP, another Umno Youth leader says.
Does Umno consider this a turning point for it, I asked one political operative. He said that despite what some pundits and analysts claim, the Orang Asal vote was not always in the bag. However, if Umno managed to get their votes, the Malay vote would be easier to handle in the rural heartland, going forward.
This was also a victory for PAS. The scandal surrounding Najib has also left a stink on PAS. Najib walking around and being embraced by the rural Orang Asal community is a powerful symbol to the more conservative PAS-inclined communities. It demonstrates some form of redemption, which is a narrative that PAS has been pushing ever since it hooked up with Umno.
What this election demonstrated, no matter what some people will claim, is that Najib is back in play.
posted by Major D Swami (Retired) @ 11:26 AM  
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