Articles, Opinions & Views: Those who believe they are saving Indira Gandhi's daughter - 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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Those who believe they are saving Indira Gandhi's daughter - Commander S THAYAPARAN (Retired) Royal Malaysian Navy
Monday, February 25, 2019
Malaysiakini : “What is objectionable, what is dangerous about extremists is not that they are extreme, but that they are intolerant. The evil is not what they say about their cause, but what they say about their opponents.”- Robert F Kennedy
COMMENT | The disappearance of Pastor Koh and the kidnapping of Indira Gandhi’s daughter are manifestations of what is wrong with this country. I believe religious extremism is the existential threat facing our country.
However, I have focused my attention on personalities, rather than acknowledge the fundamental divide among the people in this country. There is something dark bubbling beneath the surface. When I asked why the government is not interested in finding Indira’s daughter, I referenced a young friend in the state security apparatus - "Siapa nak (who will) believe that our boys cannot find this orang bodoh (idiot), tuan?” The police officer who said this may be young, but he has field experience in the Anti-Narcotics Division.
Attending the anti-ICERD rally, I was exposed to the other side of the Malaysian story, specifically the Indira Gandhi narrative. It was an education for me, because while many people welcomed me into their discussion, what I discovered was that for many people, rational discussion has no room in their worldview.
Indira Gandhi
While rational people sympathise with Indira, there are many people out there who despise her. Despise her so-called “victimhood”. Despise the fact that she tenaciously goes against the system, which allows her to live in this country.
Reading comments on social media, you will discover that while most non-Malays view this kidnapping as a transgression against a mother, there are many Muslims who have no sympathy for Indira. They believe that her young daughter was saved from an idol-worshipping culture and from her race, which they define in the most racist of stereotypes.
While my attention has been focused on the efforts of the government – or lack thereof – to find this kidnapped child, the reality is there are many Muslims in this country who do not view this as a kidnapping case.
Admittedly, I make the mistake of talking about Islamic extremism in the abstract, talking about how political operatives make use of religion or how they do not want to change the narrative. My young Muslim friends remind me of the reality that there are many Muslims who are comfortable with the mainstream narrative and not merely because of the entitlement it brings. They are secure in the knowledge that their religion is the only truth.
These are not stereotypical religious people. These are educated people, some even Western-educated, who view Indira as some sort of racial and religious provocateur whose intent is to tarnish their religion by going against the rights of her husband. We see this kind of thinking in the mainstream “Islamic” think tanks who have been opposed to any kind of “just” resolution in cases like Indira because they view any kind of (secular) interference in their religion as a sign that Islam is under attack. So the tendency for people like me is to put a target on them, without realising that their audience is perhaps the greater danger.
We are not talking about racists or bigoted comments online. Indira gets that from deranged partisan cretins who view her and her case as inconsequential in the larger scheme of things, and that she is a constant reminder of how Harapan is failing. No, what I am talking about are the people who would support her ex-husband Muhammad Riduan Abdullah because they believe it is their religious obligation.
Kidnapper has 'a support system'
I believe if the state security apparatus wanted to find Indira’s daughter, they could. I believe they have no interest in finding her. I also believe this kidnapper has a support system which helps him evade capture.

There are so many ways Muhammad Riduan Abdullah could evade the law and it does not have to include the complicity of the state security apparatus, although I suspect they are complicit. What people fail to understand is that the religious bureaucracy is a system of its own, with tributaries that riddle the country.
It would not surprise me, if there are enablers, who are average citizens, conspiring to keep this child within Islam. I do not think these people consider Riduan as some sort of religious martyr, but rather they believe that Indira’s daughter belongs to them and their faith. It pains me to say this, but Indira's daughter probably has been indoctrinated to believe the narrative of her captors instead of her mother.
I get that all this is politically incorrect to say. My mistake has been to focus on the obvious targets. I forget that extreme religious polemics is not necessarily propaganda to some people, but dogma. I forget that while some people can empathise with the anguish of Indira, there are many who think that her child has been saved and it is the people who support Indira who are the transgressors.
All of this is part of the complex web of bigotry and religious extremism that we are told is the fringe, but in reality, is part of the mainstream of Malay society. You think that PAS is tarnishing Islam? What about people who believe that Indira’s daughter belongs to the Islamic faith? What about a system which has not discovered the whereabouts of a kidnapped child because the child is a Muslim? What about politicians who claim that Islam is a moderate religion, but are quiet when it comes to the case of Indira?
What is worse, a state security apparatus which could not be bothered to find this kidnapped child, or the possibility that this kidnapped child is living in a community which views her kidnapping as saving her from her mother, her culture and her race, and have indoctrinated her?
posted by Major D Swami (Retired) @ 5:33 PM  
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