“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”
General Douglas MacArthur"
“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, there is only attack and attack and attack some more.
“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."
Why would talent return to Malaysia? - Commander S THAYAPARAN (Retired) Royal Malaysian Navy
Thursday, January 12, 2023
Malaysiakini : The reason why I chose to open this piece with the out-of-favour Zaid
Ibrahim is because seven years ago he wrote a piece which neatly
encapsulates why not only young Malays should leave this country but
demonstrated articulately what crude majoritarianism was doing to the
There is a great passage in the piece
- “There are many things the Malays can learn by migrating. They need
to realise that being in the majority and being able to impose their
will, as they like, do not always bring tangible benefits. As migrants,
they then realise what it is like to be a minority. They have to, by
necessity, become part of a larger community. They need to know the
meaning of consensus and try to live like other minorities” - which
neatly captures why talent leaves this county.
See, I do not for
one minute think people leave this country because of the corruption.
People leave this country – mind you I am not only talking about the
non-Malays – because they fear the rise of theocracy. Let me just refine
that a bit.
Talent (and I am talking about the cogs in the
system, which means everyone from doctors to welders) leave because they
understand that the pushback to these religious extremists over the
decades has become more muted, although social media makes it seem very
People are missing the bigger point about what Permatang Pauh MP
Muhammad Fawwaz Mohamad Jan did over the weekend when he stomped into a
mall demanding that “Muslim sensitivities” be observed by a private enterprise.
really agitates people, what makes them want to leave this country, is
that they see how the management of the mall responded to this
provocation. In other words, continued appeasement leads to a kind of
Instead of reminding this PAS political operative
that the mall is for all Malaysians with diverse tastes (pardon the pun)
and while they understood his position, they would not concede to his
demands because it interfered with not only their constitutional rights
but more importantly, their economic rights.
And this is the key.
As the years roll on, sticking up for your rights is becoming more
onerous. What the youth vote demonstrates is that young people who vote,
especially Muslims, have no desire for any kind of consensus building.
is the point that Zaid was making when he said that the most important
lesson migrating Malays would get from living as a minority was
Racial and religious bigotry
this is exactly what makes talent leave this country. Over the decades,
the consensus has become appeasement and nobody wants to live in a
country where the appeasement of racists and religious extremists not
only endangers your rights as a citizen, but also makes you complicit in
a system in which you really have no say.
I mentioned cogs
earlier in the piece. I know more Malaysian Indian marine welders
working in Singapore and Vietnam than I do working in the local
They didn’t leave this country because they hated this country. They
left this country because they understood that they could not fight the
system of racial and religious bigotry which was impeding their ability
to exercise their economic rights.
Despite leaving this country
they love this country. They want to come back here and retire like
their parents, but they understand that their children need to be
protected from what is coming.
you want people to stay and fight for their rights, you must be able to
demonstrate that staying and fighting is something that is worthwhile.
We are not yet at the stage where you can point to incremental changes
and say that this is progress.
We are a developed country with
narratives that are evidence that religious and racial plurality is
something we had, but lost like many Islamic state narratives in
countries all over the Middle East.
Do not for one minute think
that just because you are living in an urban bubble your safe spaces are
immune from the transgression of Islamic extremists. What you consider
safe spaces is, in reality, a boxing-in strategy of extremists
interested in playing the long game.
The problem is that this goal of saving Malaysia from a kleptocracy does not deal with the real issue of Islamic extremism and ketuanan politics.
do not leave their homelands because they have corrupt politicians.
People leave their homelands because of religious and racial extremism.
has not reached that stage where our lives are at risk. However, this
does not mean that we should be foolish enough to believe that this will
Now, of course, I know what some people would argue.
They would say we have to understand the issues at play here and not
“provoke” and just bend heads down, and move on, until the next time
when religious political operatives demand that coffee shops, bars and
other public spaces be free of alcohol because Muslim sensitivities
would be affected.
Malaysia is a wonderful place to live in. We
are lucky enough to have a confluence of cultures situated on a piece of
land that is fertile and an ecosystem which has always been nurturing.
is a reason why some folks called this the “Blessed Land”. But the
system is pissing it all away, contorting the cultures in a toxic brew
of racism and religiosity. And it is only getting worse.