Articles, Opinions & Views: Umno-PAS union – Harapan spooks easily - 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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Umno-PAS union – Harapan spooks easily - Commander S THAYAPARAN (Retired) Royal Malaysian Navy
Monday, September 16, 2019
When Fanatics and Supremacists become allies??????
Malaysiakini : "Pakatan must be brave and not be hesitant in fulfilling its promises, especially on the Malay and bumiputra agenda, which is an integral part of the national agenda. We must do so without feeling apologetic or be fearful of criticism from others."– Azmin Ali, PKR deputy president
COMMENT | The quote that opens this piece is indicative of how easily Pakatan Harapan gets spooked by the far-right forces in this country. Azmin Ali blurted this out after the loss in the Semenyih by-election. And of the Umno-PAS union, Selangor Menteri Besar Amirudin Shari says: They will create racial politics, and there will be a movement of extreme racial politics.
I am worried this will happen even though they have a constitutional basis, but I hope they are not extreme in pushing their political struggle.” This is the problem right here. Firstly, Umno and PAS are not the only ones creating racial politics. Bersatu and the majority of elected Malay political operatives are playing racial politics. Furthermore, racial politics is also played by non-Malay political operatives of Harapan in the way how they either compromise or fight for race-based preoccupations, which truthfully is what got them elected in the first place.
The reality is that MCA and MIC were just caving in to Umno’s demands. Secondly, when Amirudin says that “they have a constitutional basis” what does this mean, exactly? Well, the Malay political narrative has always been that their rights and privileges are based on the Federal Constitution. Now, whether this is true in law or principle is beside the point. The Constitution has become some sort of totem for Malay power structures; hence, Azmin can get away with saying what he says and the blowback is muted because nobody wants to appear to be against the constitution or lose the Malay vote.
Take a close look at the five points of the Umno-PAS charter. Is there anything in this charter that has not been said by the mainstream political elites in this country? In fact, the charter is neither radical nor threatening, since those five points are exactly the ideological basis of an organisation like Bersatu.
If you read closely, the Umno-PAS five-point charter is really just Bersatu’S 13-point principles condensed into a more user-friendly political narrative. It is all there. Everything Umno-PAS wants to fight for, Bersatu is already fighting for. At least that is what Bersatu says. Now did we hear any Harapan political operatives objecting to these principles?

All this hand-wringing about racial politics and staying the course is just crap. Racial politics is embedded in mainstream Malaysian politics. There is nothing in this charter beyond the political baggage of Umno and PAS that is anathema to Harapan’s political narrative. 
And if we are really being honest, the political baggage Harapan is carrying is not really any different from that of Umno and PAS. Folks who go on about Malays who would vote for corrupt leaders don’t seem to mind the numerous allegations of corruption and political malfeasance that were committed by their anointed ones before they joined Harapan. 
Even PAS, oftentimes, gets the short end of the stick when it comes to religious politics. After all, when it comes to the policy initiatives of Harapan’s religious czar Mujahid Yusof Rawa, can anyone articulate the differences between what comes out of Putrajaya and what comes out of the PAS muktamar?

At this moment, Mujahid (photo) seems big on standard operating procedures (SOP) and state rights. Before the election, he was talking about the spiritual connectivity between the Abrahamic faiths, well, at least between Christianity and Islam, and was talking about the need for a plurality of Islamic voices instead of the propaganda of the state. 
The Syiah crackdown is part of the Umno state narrative as well as that of PAS. Instead of reforming the religious bureaucracy, Harapan’s religious czar is enabling them to carry out the pre-election racial and religious agenda of a political party which was defeated in the polls. Unless, of course, Mujahid sees nothing wrong with the way how the religious bureaucracy operates, which is at odds with his pre-election religious narrative. When we talk about Harapan backtracking on Icerd or the various other international human rights conventions, what we are really talking about is the principle 'perjauangan' of race and religious-based parties. The Umno-PAS charter, far from being an extreme document, is so mainstream it is laughable.

For someone like me, I hoped that it would be more radical in the sense that it clearly articulates Abdul Hadi Awang’s ideological stance that non-Malay/Muslims are in reality 'pak turut', but when I read the points, I realised that I was not only reading a condensed form of Bersatu’s principles but rather the polemics and policy coming out from mainstream political parties. 
Such a disappointment. Where is all the religious extremism that non-Malay political operatives were babbling on about? Where are all the doom and gloom which would paint a bleak future of the further Talibanisation of Malaysia? The charter was anodyne. So, when Harapan political operatives sound the alarm, it is really extremely hypocritical. It is not as if Harapan has an egalitarian ideology which is the opposite of what Umno and PAS are offering. PAS, of course, comes off better like it did when it teamed up with the (then) opposition parties. 
What this does is give PAS national exposure. It gives PAS a platform on which to further erode the democratic and secular foundations of this country and the Federal Constitution. Who knows if Umno and PAS can manage the seat allocation conundrum, but all PAS has to do is spook Malay power structures to get them to fertilise the ground in which a large section of the voting Malay demographic become normalised to PAS' vision of Islamic hegemony. 
Umno needs them and Harapan Malay political structures are afraid to go against mainstream Islamic narratives in this country. Getting hot and bothered about the Umno-PAS union is a red herring. It is a political ploy used by political operatives who want to mask their religious and racial politics with another convenient enemy which is perceived to be a greater threat.
That's the real issue with Umno-PAS union. It is further evidence that mainstream Malaysian politics is entrenched in racial and religious delirium, but more importantly, it has the potential of further spooking Harapan.
posted by Major D Swami (Retired) @ 5:50 PM  
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