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Monday, September 1, 2014

Rumah Guan Eng dibaling 'molotov cocktail'

Gaza Strip: ISIS Intent on Palestine and Murder of Jews

by Gregory Baskin -

The Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS), which is the organization that has quickly gained control of vast areas of Syria and Iraq using no-holds-barred tactics such as beheadings, kidnappings, and bombings, has now declared that one of its goals is “to fight the barbaric Jews and kill those of them hiding behind the gharqad trees, the trees of the jews.” Ghargad is a small bush the grows on desert sand dunes. In order to commit such murder, ISIS said it will first “do everything within its means to continue striking down every apostate who stands as an obstacle on its path towards Palestine.” This area is composed of the Gaza Strip, the West Bank, as well as other places.

The intent of the group to take control of Palestine is shored up by media reports that ISIS cells are forming inside the Gaza Strip. Moreover, its intent to murder Jews was advertised last month when hooded ISIS members chanted “Death to Jews” at a protest in The Netherlands.

Inflammatory statements appeared in ISIS’ new, slick English language publication, Dabiq, which is geared toward young Muslims in Western states. The New Republic said the magazine “looks like a New York glossy with pictures of mutilated bodies.” Unlike other militant recruiting publications (i.e. Al Qaeda’s Inspire), Dabiq avoids religious text and relies on calls-to-action that sound contemporary, and therefore, digestible for young recruits hoping for a chance to die for their cause. It also prominently displays front-and-center writings about a coming apocalypse.

The magazine declares ISIS’ “commitment to making the religion of Allah triumphant over all other religions” and that ISIS’ fighters will continue “until we die trying to make the religion triumphant.” With major victories on either side of the Euphrates River, ISIS has claimed vast swaths of territory for the Islamic State it wishes to create in the Gaza Strip and elsewhere.

ISIS became very present in the Western consciousness when it recently published a video of James Foley, an American journalist, being executed. Estimates are that up to one-half of the people in ISIS’ ranks are from the West. The top suspect in Foley’s death–the man believed to have beheaded him–is a British rapper nicknamed “Jihadi John” by his ISIS colleagues.

Dabiq does not publish Arab poetry, as previous jihadist publications have. It is written, instead, in simple English, a language that young Muslims in the United States or Europe can relate to. Its latest (second) issue implores readers to perform hijrah, or to travel “from the state of the infidel to the state of Islam.”

Dabiq shows branding sophistication in its obvious desire to appeal to its target audience via using a slick format and many graphic illustrations. High quality photographs show ghastly executions and jihadists on battlefields. The terrorist acts that are described are rationalized in the magazine by ISIS’ overall goal of creating a caliphate, or a country ruled over by a strict and horrifying interpretation of Islamic Law, or Sharia. Intent as it is on Palestine, Dabiq offers the promise of the murder of Jews as a recruiting enticement.

The leader, or caliph, of ISIS is Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, who has been criticized for not helping Palestinian civilians from being killed in the recent hostilities with Israel in the Gaza Strip. His new magazine states that, unlike the empty words of Arab nations who say much and act little, theirs should not be taken lightly.

In addition to its giant presence in war-torn Syria, the Sunni-dominated ISIS also stormed across Iraq recently, conquering Sunni cities and, according to the United Nations, driving over one million people from their homes and committing murder upon an untold number of Jews, as well as other ethnicities. In an episode reminiscent to the homes of Jews being marked in 1930s Germany, ISIS showed its intent by marking the homes of Christians in Mosul with a “N” for Nazarene. ISIS then forcibly removed all Christians from their homes and destroyed all of the local Christian institutions. For ISIS, it is Palestine or bust, apparently.

Opinion By Gregory Baskin

Rotherham child sex scandal resulted in 100 babies as abuse victim reveals she fell pregnant TWICE

Young: Jane with her baby in hospital
One disgusted mum in her 30s told the Sunday Mirror: "I was groomed and abused, but the police took no action”

Teenage girls raped in the Rotherham child sex abuse scandal gave birth to more than 100 babies.

Scores more children as young as 13 ­miscarried or were forced to have abortions after attacks by Asian gangs on 1,400 girls.

One victim, who got ­pregnant TWICE to the same attacker, said: “I was groomed and abused, but the police took no action.”

The vulnerable youngster had an abortion at just 14 when her abuser threatened to have her killed if she gave birth to his baby.

Then he made her pregnant again just six months later – and allowed her to keep her child, but only if she became a Muslim.

Now a mother in her 30s, she told the Sunday Mirror how she was also TWICE failed by police who refused to investigate the attacks on her.

The woman, who we are calling Jane to protect her identity, said: “I know now I was groomed and abused, but back then, I was confused. Now I want to tell my story to help other girls like me. There are so many of us suffering in silence.”

Jane is just one of more than 100 victims who gave birth to their rapists’ babies as 1,400 girls were groomed, abused and raped in the South Yorkshire town from 1997 to 2013.

Some babies were kept by their young mothers while many were forcibly adopted and are now themselves in the care system.

The heartbreaking legacy of the scandal that has left a new generation of children’s lives blighted for ever is revealed deep in the shock independent report into Rotherham published last week.

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A meaningful Merdeka Day for me!

I am so happy today. It is a real Merdekal Day for me. My first book in the beautiful Bahasa Malaysia and my fifth on Malaysian Cultural Studies will be out soon, entitled 'Kalimah Allah Milik Siapa?: Renungan dan Nukilan Tentang Malaysia di Era Pancaroba', due to be out in the Malaysian bookstores by Merdeka Day. I am elated.

A few months ago, when I was working on it, I wrote these, I am sharing with you wonderful and supportive readers since eight year ago when I first started writing for Malaysiakini. Here it goes:

My greatest moment of joy, in my years of writing, will be for my ideas to be translated into the Malay Language. I have often told myself that I will one day find that moment to celebrate - I think this will be the moment.

To me, there is a sense of awe, mystery, magic and humility in this beautiful language I find enchanting as an effort to convey my ideas to Malay-speaking readers. I grew up in this language and my social and inner reality was constructed out of the tools and materials, artifacts and consciousness, offered by it.

This language will always be the beautiful bridge that connects me to the person I loved most in my life: my mother. She passed on a few years ago. My only regret is she did not get the chance to understand what I have been writing all these years.

Language constructs reality, alters it, shapes, it deconstructs it, or even destroys it to have it evolve into a karmic cycle. Throughout my life, my worldviews have vacillated and oscillated between these two worlds. I think in both languages and direct my consciousness to act in the worldviews of both.

There is a challenge, however. I write better in the English Language having been schooled in it since the day I set foot in an English-medium school in Johor Baru: Sekolah Temenggong Abdul Rahman 1.

The challenge is to express my thoughts to others in the Malay Language and to convey the meaning as accurately as I can by using metaphors, similes, examples, extrapolations, and clarifications in the Malay Language. The biggest challenge is to convey anthropological, philosophical, philological, and technological ideas to a speaker of the Malay Language.

In the case of my writings on the 'Allah Controversy', how, for example would the English language be able to fully convey the ideas of the nature and attributes of God when words such as 'ujud, qidam, baqa', muha-lafatuhu lil hawadis, walqiamuhu binafsih wahdaniat, kudrat, iradat, ilm, hayat, sama' basar, qalam...' of  'ruh, jasad, zat, sifat', of the concepts addressing complexity of the 'ilmu kalam', and so on and so forth are to be translated or transliterated into the English Language?

What about words such as 'nafs ammarah lawammah, suriyah, mutmainnah' to be understood as the evolutionary and vacillationary stages of anger? This is the complexity and the daunting-ness of the works in translations.

My thoughts are essentially Western-centric

This is the dilemma. My thoughts are essentially 'Western-centric' and my hopes are to get the ideas to the world of those who are 'Eastern-centric', with the goal of coming to an agreement of the universality of the ideas on politics, education, semiotics, cybernetics, and spirituality.

I have never given up on this hope, although I have found it daunting to think how Malaysian readers well-versed in the beautiful and aesthetically pleasing Malay Language can grasp the meaning of my ideas presented in the functional and technologically-inspired English Language. I know that it is not merely a 'translation', whether direct, or in 'spirit'; it is a complex cognitive process of 'shifting, vacillating and oscillating' world views.

Countless times I have been asked to have my writings translated, so that "the Malays can benefit from my calls for change" as it is often said, and my commitment to share what I believe a beautiful country such as Malaysia ought to evolve into, given ideas of ethics, creativity and futurism drawn essentially from a 'Western-centric' point of view.

I know I will one day honour that request. I know that what I have been sharing will reach the minds of the Malay-speaking readers. That moment has arrived - with my first book in the Malay Language. I could not have done this with the excellent work done by Pauline Fan, who I believe is one of the best translators to be able to read my vacillating-oscillating thoughts well, having also been the editor of two of my previous books.

I know that my mother will be proud of what I have been doing and from where she is now, looking at me in the eyes with the look of the profundity of love, she too will read the artifacts of my mind, with ease.

Given a good translator, my dream of not being lost in translation will became a reality. The moment has arrived - with my first book in the Malay Language. I could not have done this with the excellent work done by Pauline, a fellow columnist Bahasa Malaysia section and a cultural activist.

Our work is collaborative with the support from my excellent and most efficient publisher Gerakbudaya, which has faith in my writings and have published the two previous works, 'The Allah Controversy', and 'Dark Spring'. Needless to say my gratitude to Malaysiakini for letting me share my views, for social improvement, for the last eight years,

I hope I have honoured the request of many of my readers who have given me the encouragement to write, and whose words of praise have humbled me.

Till then, here is poem I wrote for my mother:

Mother's Day

I am at a loss for words
I could just write “Words cannot describe my love for you.
Thank you for everything …”

Like everybody said
In those cards, those poems, those moments of well-wishing
I could just say that
And wait for another year.
Another celebration.

At each and every breath I take
As each and every thought of every veins in my body that makes me stay awake
Each and every cell I bathe with mantras to
Each and every corner of your womb my eyes glanced through
I want to say “thank you …”

But that would be ordinary
As others too have wished.

Maybe I could send you a card
A prayer to your soul
And remind you of a memory of me when I was a child
And tell you where I have been as I walk on this world they called “maya”
I could tell you now what you meant by the path of righteousness
The path I took
The road not taken
That may have made a difference
But mother, on this day of yours
Those would be ordinary.

I am at a loss for words
Unless my thoughts and my words are in the Jawi you know
I could write about the days when I was a child
Fighting demons
Strange creatures in my mind
Out to destroy our kampong
I fought them alone
None will ever know
On those trees
In the rivers
In the room I locked myself in
No one knew . Not even you.

I could write all those on Mother’s Day
But those would be ordinary stories.

Mother, on this day I must confess
That I was an existentialist as early as when I started to:
Climb that tree
Sneaked out of that wooden back door
Jumped out of those old Javanese looking windows
Roamed the city alone in my Japanese slippers
Walked along the huge huge water pipes that lead to Singapore city.

I was an existentialist, mother.
I cared about the Universe
But did the Universe care about me?

I wanted to tell you all these
On Mother’s Day back in the day
But my story would be ordinary.
Plain ordinary.

You combed my hair daily
Laced it with Brylcreem
Masked me with Cuticura talcum powder
Tucked my shirt well into my neatly pressed pants,

You held my hand everywhere I go
Afraid that the world would take me away
You held my hand tight as we crossed roads
Afraid that I would come to multiple crossroads

I wanted to tell you all these Mother.
On the following Mother’s Day.
Back in the day.
Ordinary story to me.

Mother you are sweet
You said I had beautiful eyes
Those eyelashes too
Eyes that came from the depth of the night

Somewhere you and I may know
I saw you smile
When many came to look at my eyes
But what have those eyes seen now?

I don’t know how to say “Happy Mother’s Day”
That would be too ordinary to you and me.
I can only feel everyday is your day .
Though for many years I was sent away.
Like an anarkin.

DR AZLY RAHMAN, born in Singapore and grew up in Johor Baru, holds a Columbia University (New York City) doctorate in International Education Development and Masters degrees in four areas: Education, International Affairs, Peace Studies and Communication. He has taught more than 40 courses in six different departments and has written more than 350 analyses on Malaysia. His teaching experience in Malaysia and the United States spans over a wide range of subjects, from elementary to graduate education. He has edited and authored four books; Multiethnic Malaysia: Past, Present, Future (2009), Thesis on Cyberjaya: Hegemony and Utopianism in a Southeast Asian State (2012), The Allah Controversy and Other Essays on Malaysian Hypermodernity (2013), and the latest Dark Spring: Ideological Roots of Malaysia's GE-13 (2013). He currently resides in the United States. Twitter, blog.

Police chief wants probe on tweets insulting him - Malaysiakini

Inspector-General of Police (IGP) Khalid Abu Bakar has asked the force's cyber investigation unit (PCIRC) to act against individuals who insulted him on social networking site Twitter.

Khalid posted screenshots in his own Twitter account of two individuals who tagged Khalid with insulting messages directed at the police chief.

Although the reason for their outburst is unclear but it could be related to the police's action against the Penang Voluntary Unit (PPS) earlier today.

In both Twitter postings, Khalid mentioned PCIRC and requested that action be taken against them.

In one posting, a man tagged Khalid and called him "anjing BN" (BN dog), while another posted, "Thanks to ruthless (Khalid), Henrich Himmler of Malaysia."

Khalid said the first individual he mentioned was being "insolent" against the IGP and subsequently requested action against the other Twitter user.

Cyber response team starts probe

In a statement posted on its Facebook, the PCIRC said that it would investigate the two individuals, though it did not specify under what sections.

"The Police Cyber Investigation Response Centre will take action and conduct investigations on individuals who issue statements that insult PDRM through social media.”

It also posted the screenshots of the two Twitter postings to help identify the individuals behind it.

Khalid had earlier today ordered the police to take action against PPS, and currently 154 of them have been detained by Penang police, despite the state government's insistence that PPS is a legal state agency.

The police chief had argued that PPS is not registered under the Societies Act and thus it is an illegal organisation.

Selagi sejarah Merdeka ditipu, Malaysia tidak akan ke depan

Hari ini, genaplah 57 tahun rakyat Malaysia ditipu Malaya merdeka tanpa darah.

Selama 57 tahun juga kita diberitahu hanya Umno, MCA dan MIC sahaja yang membebaskan Malaya daripada penjajahan British.

Sedangkan, kemerdekaan Malaya pada 31 Ogos, 1957 mempunyai kisah dan cerita yang lebih besar daripada itu.

Penjajah British tidak akan memulakan rundingan kemerdekaan dengan Tunku Abdul Rahman jika tiada perjuangan mengangkat senjata melawan mereka di Malaya.

Terlalu banyak darah yang sudah ditumpahkan dan nyawa yang melayang sebelum bendera Union Jack diturunkan di Dataran Merdeka 57 tahun lalu.

Kita perlu jelas perjuangan mengangkat senjata rakyat Malaya yang bermula pada tahun 1948 itu berlaku selepas British mengisytiharkan darurat dan mengharamkan pertubuhan-pertubuhan politik kiri seperti Parti Kebangsaan Melayu Malaya (PKMM), Angkatan Pemuda Insaf (API), Angkatan Wanita Sedar (AWAS), Parti Komunis Malaya (PKM) dan banyak lagi.

Mengapa pertubuhan-pertubuhan ini diharamkan?

Kerana mereka mahu kemerdekaan 100% bagi Malaya.

Mereka mahu British keluar dan tidak lagi mengaut kekayaan ekonomi tanah ini.

Mereka juga mahu Malaya diperintah orang-orang dari tanah ini tanpa mengikut telunjuk British. Ini di antara sebab British memerangi mereka habis-habisan.

Kita perlu tahu parti politik pertama orang-orang Melayu adalah PKMM dan bukannya United Malay National Organisation (Umno).

PKMM yang ditubuhkan pada 17 Oktober 1945 juga merupakan parti Melayu pertama dan melaungkan slogan merdeka lebih awal daripada Umno.

10 tahun sebelum merdeka, sudah wujud sebuah pertubuhan politik berbilang kaum dan progresif Putera-AMCJA yang jika berjaya memerintah negara pada ketika itu, akan memusnahkan politik perkauman ciptaan British.

Perlu diingat, pada ketika itu konsep Melayu masih lagi diperdebatkan dan Putera-AMCJA mencadangkan agar semua warganegara Malaya merupakan orang-orang Melayu.

British amat takut dengan kesatuan berbilang kaum dalam Putera-AMCJA dan menghancurkannya. Selain propaganda media, British menangkap pimpinan-pimpinan pertubuhan progresif ini semasa darurat 1948.

Melayu, Cina dan India perlu dipisah-pisahkan supaya mudah bagi British untuk mentadbir. Sehingga hari ini formula sama masih digunakan kerajaan untuk memerintah negara.

Penulis tidak berniat untuk memberi syarahan sejarah, fakta-fakta di atas dikeluarkan agar pembaca boleh mengkaji sendiri dan menilai apa yang sebenarnya berlaku dan peristiwa-peristiwa mendorong tercapainya merdeka.

Walaupun akhirnya kita tidak boleh menafikan, Tunku bersama Umno, MCA dan MIC yang berjaya mendapatkan kemerdekaan Malaya daripada British, latar belakang dan sejarah sebenar yang berlaku perlu diketahui dan diberitahu agar jati diri kita menjadi lebih kuat.

Ia juga bertujuan untuk menghargai peranan semua pihak yang berjuang memerdekakan negara termasuk PKM yang dijadikan “momok” sehingga kini.

Jika sejarah sebenar diberitahu, sambutan kemerdekaan pada tanggal 31 Ogos setiap tahun akan menjadi lebih bermakna kepada semua pihak.

Jika tidak, sambutan hari kemerdekaan Malaya yang kemudiannya menjadi Malaysia pada 16 September 1963 hanya akan dihargai penyokong Umno dan Barisan Nasional (BN) dan tidak melibatkan seluruh negara.

Malaysia harus bergerak ke hadapan. Namun tanpa mengetahui sejarah sebenar, masalah-masalah pokok negara seperti perkauman tidak akan dapat diselesaikan.

Selamat menyambut hari kemerdekaan Malaya yang ke 57. – 31 Ogos, 2014.

* Ini adalah pendapat peribadi penulis dan tidak semestinya mewakili pandangan The Malaysian Insider.

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Dewan Ulama PAS Selangor lulus usul kecam Adun sokong Wan Azizah

Dewan Ulama PAS Selangor berhimpun di Klang hari ini. – Gambar Facebook Dewan Ulamak PAS Negeri Selangor, 31 Ogos, 2014. Dua Ahli Dewan Undangan Negeri (Adun) PAS Selangor hari ini dikecam Dewan Ulama negeri susulan keputusan mereka menyokong Presiden PKR, Datuk Seri Dr Wan Azizah Wan Ismail sebagai calon menteri besar (MB).

Perkara tersebut diputuskan selepas usul dibuat dalam Muktamar Tahunan Ulama PAS negeri Selangor kali ke-26 yang berlangsung hari di Klang, hari ini.

"Muktamar sebulat suara meluluskan usul mengutuk dan mengecam tindakan Saari Sungib dan Hasnul Baharuddin yang bertindak menandatangani Akuan Bersumpah (SD) menyokong Dr Wan Azizah sebagai calon Menteri Besar Selangor tanpa pengetahuan dan persetujuan parti," menurut kenyataan dalam akaun Facebook Dewan Ulama hari ini.

Selain keputusan mengecam Adun Hulu Kelang dan Morib tersebut, Dewan Ulama negeri juga mendesak tindakan diambil ke atas mereka.

"Dewan juga menyerahkan kepada Jawatankuasa Tatatertib PAS Pusat mengambil tindakan ke atas Adun berkenaan berdasarkan Fasal 82, Perlembagaan PAS (Pindaan) 2011," kata kenyataan itu.

Muktamar tersebut dirasmikan pemangku Timbalan Ketua Dewan Ulama PAS Pusat, Datuk Dr Mahfodz Mohamad.

Ketika kemelut di Selangor berada dalam keadaan tegang menanti PAS membuat keputusan rasmi dua minggu lepas, Saari dan Hasnul mengambil langkah menyokong Dr Wan Azizah secara terbuka.

Ia menyebabkan mereka menerima kritikan dan kecaman daripada parti sendiri.

Bagaimanapun, mereka menyatakan kesediaan berdepan sebarang tindakan disiplin.

PAS Pusat pada 17 Ogos memutuskan mencalonkan Dr Wan Azizah dan Timbalan Presiden PKR, Mohamed Azmin Ali menggantikan Tan Sri Abdul Khalid Ibrahim, walaupun PKR bertegas menamakan Dr Wan Azizah sebagai calon tunggal.

Setiausaha Agung PAS Datuk Mustafa Ali mengesahkan hanya dua daripada 15 Adun PAS di Selangor menandatangani SD menyokong Dr Wan Azizah.

Sebelum ini, Mahfodz yang juga Ahli Majlis Syura Ulama PAS mendesak pemecatan kedua-dua Adun tersebut. – 31 Ogos, 2014.

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Musa Hitam blames Putrajaya for Malay dilemma - TMI

Former deputy prime minister Tun Musa Hitam says only politicians bankrupt of ideas will play on the race card. – The Malaysian Insider pic by Najjua Zulkefli, August 31, 2014. The Malays are suffering from inferiority complex because of Putrajaya’s preaching that the community is backward and always in need of assistance, said former deputy prime minister Tun Musa Hitam.

"Putrajaya has mentioned several times that it has a target of increasing the Bumiputera equity ownership in the national economic pie to 30% by 2020.

"But, the government does not take government-linked companies into account when they point out that the present Bumiputera equity ownership is 24%.

"We are deluding ourselves by continuously pointing a finger at the Chinese. There is no such thing as perfection," Musa told The Malaysian Insider in an exclusive at the World Islamic Economic Forum (WIEF) office in Hampshire Place, Kuala Lumpur.

Musa, who is the WIEF chairman, said the race issue had been played upon numerous times and has had a negative effect on Malaysia.

"Only bankrupt politicians continually use race and religion to win support.

"Do not get me wrong, I am Umno through and through, even if I am may not talk like a mainstream party member.

"We cannot adopt the attitude of 50 years ago. We have to keep progressing and updating ourselves."

Musa said the New Economic Policy introduced by former prime minister Tun Abdul Razak Hussein was to improve the livelihood of Malays.

"The NEP was to lift the Malay community in Malaysia and to remove their inferiority complex."

He said that there were many Malays who had performed well and now made up the middle class of Malaysia, and that they could rationalise for themselves.

But, he regretted that there was a gap between the current generation and certain leaders in Putrajaya as they appeared to be on different wavelengths.

"Some leaders do not appear to be in sync with the very people whom they have trained."

He recalled an incident with a group of youths over a meal while travelling to Johor for a holiday:

"A group of 30 to 40 Malay youths stopped by the eatery where my wife and I were eating."

"Some of them recognised me and approached us. After exchanging pleasantries, one of the boys asked whether they could share something with me.

"I said go ahead, by all means. The youths told me in a rather apologetic manner that they were anti-government."

He said he told the youths the fact that they disagreed with Putrajaya was born out of the previous administrations, which reflected democracy.

"Many quarters take it for granted that Malay leadership is the most important factor. But, there are many other challenges to that due to the open society we live in.

"I am also saddened and disappointed by some of the comments and remarks made by the present leaders.

"They do not appear to have done their homework and research before saying something.

"More often than not, many of the present leaders talk first and then realise they have made an error later when it is too late to retract their statement."

Musa said the current leadership had shown that they were unable to deal with sensitive issues like religion.

"The Malays seem to be confused about religion. The non-Malays are appalled at what is happening among the leadership in Putrajaya. "

He said politicians want to be seen as belonging, "so nobody speaks about the subject, for fear that they will be viewed as being anti-Islam".

On Christians using “Allah”, he said: "Whatever the arguments which have been raised, the simple fact of the matter is that it was decided that only Muslims in the peninsula have ownership of the word 'Allah'."

Musa was amazed and astounded that the issue had been blown all out of proportion.

"If you are confident about your religion, there is no need to worry about Malays getting confused if the word 'Allah' is used by non-Malays."

During his stint as education minister between 1978 and 1981, Musa said Christian representatives approached him.

"At that time, the government was encouraging the use of Bahasa Malaysia by all races, including Christians.

"There were no Malay-language Bibles at that time and the Christians discovered that Indonesia printed such books.

"They sought permission to import the Malay-language Bibles to Malaysia and I approved it with certain conditions.

"The conditions included importing the Bibles for their own use, to be kept in the church and no open selling or distribution of the Bibles outside of churches."

Musa stood by his decision, saying it was right and a correct compromise as the issue had been quietly settled and rationalised.

"If you want everyone to use the national language, then you should not put roadblocks and obstacles."

On Malaysia today, the 80-year-old said he felt quite depressed and down.

"Malaysia is facing the possibility of becoming a failed state as it does not know how to handle success and the intricacies of politics.

"Sure, there are positives… foreigners are impressed with Malaysia and its infrastructure. Perhaps they get the impression that Malaysians are happy and friendly.

"But there are so many wrongs which have become a right, so many extraordinary things which have become ordinary.

"We pride ourselves on being democratic and embracing the Westminster-style of politics.

"Malaysia must learn how to embrace democracy and be prepared to lose," Musa said, referring to the two-thirds majority which Barisan Nasional used to enjoy.

In the 2008 and 2013 general elections, BN watched as DAP, PKR and PAS began to make inroads into its traditional strongholds.

"Democracy also means understanding the role of criticism and being able to accept it."

Musa said the present leaders adopted the attitude of accepting a single compliment and overlooking the criticism which accompanied it.

"Digital democracy has arrived in this world. It is unpredictable, open, kind and can also be cruel."

On the hudud fracas, Musa was disappointed at how Putrajaya handled it.

"I am reasonably confident that across board, the Malay community is disagreeable to the concept of hudud.

"The image portrayed by hudud of body dismemberment is quite scary and horrifying.

"While PAS has attempted to rationalise the issue, nobody else dares to say openly that he is against it.

"Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak announces Malaysia is not ready for hudud, Umno Youth says who said it is against it?"

Musa cited a solution by former prime minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad on the issue:

" Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad gave a very simplistic yet logical summary of hudud."

"He said if a Malay was caught stealing, his hands would be cut off. But if a non-Malay was caught for the same offence, he would only spend a couple of years in jail.

"This is the way to resolve issues, to do research and rationalise, to give explanations. Nowadays, everyone simply jumps on the bandwagon.

"Nobody dares to disagree."

But, he also admired PAS for standing up to what they believed in.

"Unfortunately, nobody listens to PAS and their explanations." – August 31, 2014.

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Police haul up PPS personnel

250 squad members arrested after Merdeka march

GEORGE TOWN: Police hauled up some 250 personnel of the allegedly illegal Voluntary Patrol Squad (PPS) immediately after their march past in the Penang Merdeka celebrations at the Esplanade here this morning.

The PPS members were taken to the Northeast District police headquarters in Jalan Patani.

Northeast police chief Mior Faridalatrash Wahid said the PPS was being investigated under Section 41 of the Societies Act over an allegation that it is an unregistered organisation.

The Registrar of Societies (ROS), the Inspector General of Police and Deputy Home Minister Wan Junaidi Tuanku Jaafar have all declared PPS an illegal outfit.

Penang police received instructions from Bukit Aman to arrest all PPS members today.

But Chief Minister Lim Guan Eng at a PPS event in Komtar has remained defiant, declaring the squad as a legal state body and announcing that his government would provide legal assistance to arrested PPS members.

Last night a Molokov cocktail was thrown into the compound of Lim’s residence in Jalan Pinhorn.

No one was injured and no property was damaged in the attack.

Police are investigating whether the attack was linked to their probe on PPS.

Some 16 police reports have been lodged against PPS nationwide after some squad members allegedly assaulted a social activist in Air Itam on Aug 17.

Established four years ago, PPS has 10,000-members, 59.6% of whom are Chinese, 32% Malays, 9.7% Indians and 0.4% others.

Malaysia not a functional democracy yet

Empower is saddened Malaysia is still gender biased and prefers to use repressive laws like the Sedition Act.

PETALING JAYA: Non-governmental organisation Empower said in a Merdeka Day statement today that Malaysia is far from being “a truly functional democracy that respects the rights of its citizens.”

The NGO said this in relation to two issues dominating the political scene in Malaysia – that of gender bias and the use of the Sedition Act to silence opposing political views.

On the issue of gender bias, Empower said they were sorely “disappointed” at the mounting reluctance to accept a woman as the Menteri Besar of Selangor despite the law itself being “gender-neutral”.

“Presently, the only current Menteri Besar candidate who commands majority support from the Selangor State Assembly is Wan Azizah,” the statement read.

They also said “double standards” were widespread as women were “held accountable to higher standards” and “frequently face demands to prove themselves over and above the norm.”

“On the other hand, male counterparts with similar levels of experience go unquestioned and their qualifications are assumed,” the statement read.

The NGO was also disturbed by the increasing use of the Sedition Act to silence political criticism, saying the authorities were “overstepping their limits” despite a pledge by Prime Minister Najib Tun Razak to repeal the Sedition Act.

“SUARAM’s statistics show that the number of investigations and charges under the Sedition Act actually rose dramatically in 2013: 15 cases compared to 7 in 2012,” the NGO said.

They said this form of bad governance was leaving the people “powerless” to fight injustice while “stifling” their right to express themselves freely, engage with one another constructively or make informed choices.

Empower’s statement was endorsed by the All Women’s Action Society (AWAM), Perak Women for Women (PWW) and Sisters in Islam (SIS).

Anwar Ibrahim : Apa Makna Kemerdekaan?

Is Najib administration the most shambolic premiership in Malaysian history – with right hand not knowing what the left hand is doing?

By Lim Kit Siang,

Is the Najib administration not only on auto-pilot but the most shambolic premiership in Malaysian history, with the right hand not knowing what the left hand is doing?

Malaysians are entitled to ask this question following the anonymous statement from the Prime Minister’s Office yesterday, insisting that the slew of sedition charges against Pakatan Rakyat leaders was a court matter and the government has nothing to do with it.

The anonymous Prime Minister’s Office statement said:

“Any charges under the Sedition Act are a matter for the courts. Malaysia’s judiciary is independent, as the verdicts of many cases prove.”

The PMO statement however insisted that despite the sedition charging spree, the colonial era Sedition Act will still be replaced by the National Harmony Bill.

It said: “The government welcomes feedback from all sections of society, and hopes to present the draft Bill to Parliament by the end of next year.

“Until new legislation is in place, existing cases must be tried under existing laws.”

The PMO said the drafting of the replacement Bill was taking time as it is being carried out in consultation with civil society and the public.

Acknowledging that the recommendations of the National Unity Consultative Council (NUCC) for the Bill has been subjected to fierce criticism from extremist right wing groups, the PMO statement said: “Like other countries, we are working to find the right balance between freedom of speech and national harmony in the age of the online media”.

Thinking Malaysians find this anonymous PMO statement even more disturbing than re-assuring about what is happening in the country, in particular the Najib premiership.

Firstly, who issued the PMO statement? Why is it anonymous? Hiding the identity of the person who issued the statement is nothing more than an admission or confession that the authority for making such a statement is questionable and debatable and would not stand up to scrutiny or challenge.

Secondly, the statement not only showed the shambolic state of the Najib premiership, where the right hand does not know what the left hand is doing, but even worse, those in authority do not know what they are doing!

The PMO statement was utterly wrong when it claimed that the promise to repeal the Sedition Act would not be affected by the slew of recent sedition charges, as “Any charges under the Sedition Act are a matter for the courts” and that Malaysia’s judiciary is independent.

It is shocking that those responsible for the PMO statement do not seem to understand that in the dock of criticism for the slew of sedition charges is the Attorney-General and not the judiciary, and that although thd Attorney-General is vested with the discretionary powers under the Constitution to initiate any charges for any offence, he owes a duty of public accountability in a parliamentary democracy to explain that he is not guilty of selective and malicious prosecution against Pakatan Rakyat leaders in the recent slew of arrests and prosecutions.

Thirdly, the Attorney-General is the chief prosecutor of the Najib premiership and must reflect the policies pledged by the Prime Minister.

Najib has promised to make Malaysia the “best democracy of the world” but the slew of prosecutions against Pakatan Rakyat leaders for sedition offences as well as new-fangled criminal charges not done or unheard of even in the worst era of the 22-year “Dark Age” of the Mahathir premiership is a blatant and flagrant violation of Najib’s “best democracy” pledge.

No credible Prime Minister would on the one hand promise to make Malaysia the “best democracy in the world” and yet allow his Attorney-General to launch a prosecution dragnet against opposition leaders and dissent which only happens in the “worst democracies” in the world!

Or is anyone seriously suggesting that the Attorney-General, Tan Sri Gani Patail is empowered to go against the policies and pledges of the Prime Minister without having to resign or be sacked from office?

I understand that there will be another sedition prosecution in the next few days.

Clearly, those responsible for the PMO statement yesterday know they are fighting a losing battle, as those in government who believe in the promise of “the best democracy of the world” are being elbowed out and replaced by forces in government who are set on Malaysia joining the ranks of the “worst democracies” in the world.

Hence the advent of the New Despotism in the Najib Premiership 2.0.

(Speech at the annual ritual ceremony for Batu Sumpah Keningau in Keningau on Sunday, August 31, 2014 at 8.30 am)

Malaysians Celebrate 57th Merdeka Day In High Spirit

KUALA LUMPUR, Aug 31 (Bernama) -- Malaysians from all walks of life on Sunday celebrated the 57th anniversary of the country's independence in high spirit to face future challenges and bounce back after the MH17 tragedy.

The public were seen to have flocked various venues, either at the national or state levels, since early morning to join the celebration with the theme of 'Malaysia: Here, Where Love Begins'.

In Dataran Merdeka, over 14,000 participants from 23 contingents from government agencies, private sector, telecommunication companies and government-linked companies, took part in the Merdeka Day parade.

The Merdeka parade began promptly at 8.05am, after the arrival of the Yang di-Pertuan Agong Tuanku Abdul Halim Mu'adzam Shah and Raja Permaisuri Agong Tuanku Haminah.

Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak and wife Datin Seri Rosmah Mansor, Deputy Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin and wife Puan Sri Noorainee Abdul Rahman as well as cabinet members and heads of foreign missions were also present to watch the parade and two hours of exhilarating performances.

It is estimated that 400,000 people flocked the Dataran Merdeka and its surrounding areas to join the national-level celebration and watch the Merdeka Day parade.

The event was also broadcast live by Radio Televisyen Malaysia on TV1.

In PERAK, the state-level Merdeka celebration took place in front of the Dewan Bandaran in Ipoh.

It was celebrated on a moderate-scale as the state was still mourning the death of the Sultan of Perak, Sultan Azlan Shah, who passed away on May 28.

The celebration was graced by the new Sultan of Perak Sultan Nazrin Shah and Raja Permaisuri of Perak Tuanku Zara Salim.

Also present was Menteri Besar Datuk Seri Dr Zambry Abdul Kadir.

A total of 101 contingent from public and private agencies, institution of higher learning, uniformed bodies and non-governmental organisations participated in the Merdeka parade.

In MELAKA, the Merdeka celebration was held in front of the Independence Declaration Memorial in Banda Hilir, where the country's Father of Independence Tunku Abdul Rahman Putra Alhaj first announced the date to declare Malaysia's independence.

A total of 9,468 participants, including students, from 196 contingents took part in the four-kilometre parade.

Also present were Melaka Yang Dipertua Negeri Tun Mohd Khalil Yaakob, Chief Minister Datuk Seri Idris Haron and state executive council members.

In his speech, Idris also called on the multi-racial people in the state and in the country to stay united to maintain peace and harmony which had been among the beautiful essence of Malaysia over the past 57 years.

In SARAWAK, Yang Dipertua Negeri Tun Abdul Taib Mahmud, Chief Minister Tan Sri Adenan Satem, members of the state cabinet and other dignitaries and their wives joined some 5,000 people, including 2,000 participants, in the colourful Merdeka Day celebration at Kapit Open Sports Stadium.

In his speech, Adenan said it cannot be denied that the state had benefitted tremendously from the decision made 50 years ago by its (pre-Merdeka) pioneer leaders and people in agreeing for the state to join forces to form Malaysia.

In NEGERI SEMBILAN, the state-level Merdeka Day celebration and parade were held at the Seremban Municipal Council's field.

A total of 9,600 participants from 112 contingents comprising government agencies, private sector, non-governmental organisations, as well as students, took part in the 1.2km-long parade around the state capital.

Menteri Besar Datuk Seri Mohamad Hasan, State Assembly Speaker Datuk Dr. Awaludin Said, State Secretary Datuk Mat Ali Hassan, state executive council members and senior state officials attended the event.

In his speech, Mohamad said all quarters should try to understand the phrase 'Malaysia: Here, Where Love Begin' which was selected as the theme for the national day celebration this year.

He said they should also take it as a slogan and a guide to ensure that this beloved country would continue to be protected, with peace and harmony be preserved for the wellbeing of the people.

In KELANTAN, over 2,000 spectators watched the state-level Merdeka Parade at the 3rd Battalion of the 506th Regiment of the Territorial Army's Sungai Durian Camp in Kuala Krai.

Fifty-three contingents from various government agencies took part in the parade.

Also present were Menteri Besar Datuk Ahmad Yakob, Deputy Menteri Besar Datuk Mohd Amar Nik Abdullah, State Police chief Datuk Mazlan Lazim and Kelantan Federal Development Department director Datuk Makhtar Mustapha.

In JOHOR, the state-level Merdeka celebration was held in Kulaijaya and was attended by over 10,000 people from all walks of life.

The colourful parade began in Jalan Persiaran Sri Putra Utama at 8 am and ended at the Kulaijaya Mini Stadium.

Menteri Besar Datuk Seri Mohamed Khaled Nordin also participated in the parade by cycling along with state executive council (Exco) members, while State Assembly Speaker Datuk Mohamad Aziz and several other state Exco also participated by riding a golf cart.

In KEDAH, the state-level Merdeka parade in front of Pekan Rabu in Alor Setar kicked off at 7.30 am and was participated by over 4,000 people from 101 contingents from various public and private agencies.

Kedah Council Of Regency Chairman Tan Sri Tunku Sallehhuddin Sultan Badlishah, Kedah Council Of Regency member Tan Sri Tunku Puteri Intan Safinaz Sultan Abdul Halim, Menteri Besar Datuk Seri Mukhriz Tun Dr Mahathir and state Exco were among the 5,000 people who watched the parade.

In PAHANG, approximately 20,000 people started flocking Jalan Mahkota and Kuantan Municipal Council's field from as early as 7 am to join the state-level Merdeka celebration.

The celebration began with the arrival of Tengku Mahkota of Pahang Tengku Abdullah Sultan Ahmad Shah and Tengku Puan Pahang Tengku Azizah Aminah Maimunah Iskandariah. They were met on arrival by Menteri Besar Pahang Datuk Seri Adnan Yaakob.

All participants and spectators also observed a minute of silence as a mark of respect for the victims of the MH17 tragedy.

Ninety-seven contingents with 52 decorated vehicles took part in the parade.

In SABAH, the Royal Malaysian Police (PDRM) Special Taskforce Unit members, who were deployed to secure control during the state-level Merdeka Day celebration at the Likas Stadium in Kota Kinabalu, became the public's centre of attention as they appeared in uniformed, fully armed and masked.

The Merdeka Day, which was celebrated on a moderate scale as a respect for the MH17 tragedy victims, was also attended by Sabah Yang Dipertua Negeri Tun Juhar Mahiruddin and Chief Minister Datuk Seri Musa Aman.

In PERLIS, the state-level Merdeka parade took place at the Dataran Merdeka, Kangar, with the participation of 50 contingents representing the various state government agencies, non-governmental organisations, security forces.

The celebration was graced by the Raja of Perlis Tuanku Syed Sirajuddin Putra Jamalullail.

Also present were Raja Perempuan of Perlis Tuanku Fauziah Tengku Abdul Rashid, Raja Muda of Perlis Tuanku Syed Faizuddin Putra Jamalullail dan Raja Puan Muda of Perlis Tuanku Hajjah Lailatul Shahreen Akashah Khalil, Menteri Besar Datuk Seri Azlan Man and State Assembly Speaker Hamdan Bahari.

In PENANG, the Merdeka celebration and parade were also held on a moderate scale at the Penang Esplanade in George Town.

Approximately 5,000 spectators watched the parade which was graced by Penang Yang Dipertua Negeri Tun Abdul Rahman Abbas and his wife Toh Puan Majimor Shariff.

Also present were Chief Minister Lim Guan Eng and state Exco members.

The celebration, which began at 9 am saw the participation of 96 contingents.

In TERENGGANU, a total of 117 contingents from various public and private agencies and institutions took part in the state-level Merdeka parade, which began at the Sultan Ismail Nasiruddin Shah Stadium and ended at the Dataran Pantai Batu Buruk.

Also present were Menteri Besar Datuk Ahmad Razif Abd Rahman and his wife Toh Puan Halina Zakaria.

Friday, August 29, 2014

PAS tolak rayuan Anwar, tetap mahu kemuka 2 nama

Video: Arab Kids Playing ISIL Terrorist Game!

UN: ISIS Prefers Maiming, Killing on Fridays

So far, when the media even bothers to cover the rise of ISIS, they’ve generally chosen to focus on the atrocities in northern Iraq, where the Yazidi population and other minority sects have been explicitly hunted. But across the border, in Syria, the bloodletting has been going on for years -- and the carnage there is equally as bad, if not worse.

And yet to their credit, UN investigators have done yeomen’s work exposing ISIS’s atrocities in Syria, especially during the first half of this past year. Their 45-page expose is gruesome yet a must-read.

Ironically, too, the commissioners discovered that the holiest day of the week, Friday, is when ISIS radicals prefer torturing, maiming, and executing their victims. How sick is that?
Public executions, amputations, lashings and mock crucifixion are a regular fixture in jihadist-controlled areas of Syria, a UN probe charged Wednesday, also accusing Damascus of repeatedly using chemical weapons against civilians. "Executions in public spaces have become a common spectacle on Fridays" -- the Muslim holy day -- in parts of Syria under control of the Islamic State (IS), the independent Commission of Inquiry on human rights in Syria said. In a 45-page report covering the period from January 20 to July 15, the commission also detailed a wide range of crimes against humanity and war crimes committed by the Syrian government and other armed opposition groups. And it accused Damascus of dropping chlorine bombs on civilian areas in April -- the first time the UN has directly blamed the government for the chemical attacks.
The four-member commission detailed a litany of horrors committed by IS, including beheading boys as young as 15 and amputations and lashings in public squares as residents, including children, are forced to watch.
This blood spectacle is appalling. And yet human rights violations are not merely unique to ISIS. The Syrian government, under President Bashar al-Assad, has committed all sorts of atrocities, the commissioners found:
Government forces, which were blamed for the lion's share of abuses and deaths in the early years after the conflict broke out in 2011, had carried out more massacres and committed murder, torture and rape against civilians, the report said. Since January, the government's "indiscriminate firing of missiles and barrel bombs into civilian areas" had killed hundreds of men women and children every week, it said. At the same time, the already staggering number of deaths in Syrian prisons also appeared to be on the rise and many more civilians had disappeared without a trace, said the report.
The administration’s objective in Syria is arming and supporting the “moderate” wing of the opposition. But with so much death and destruction going on, it’s difficult to credibly decipher between friend and foe.
It’s true too that ISIS and Assad’s government forces are killing each other; but if the US intervenes, and alters the balance of power, insulating Assad even more is hardly an ideal outcome.

Marched to their deaths: Sickening ISIS slaughter continues as 250 soldiers captured at Syrian airbase are stripped then led to the desert for mass execution

  • Startling footage of vast pile of bodies circulated today on social media
  • Men in only their underwear form a long line stretching across the desert
  • Islamic State fighter said men were from Tabqa air base, captured this week
  • Human Rights Watch described shocking video as 'another ISIS war crime'

Sickening footage appears to show Islamic State militants parading around 250 captured soldiers through the desert in their underwear before they are killed and their bodies piled on the bare earth.

An Islamic State fighter claimed the men were from the Syrian government's Tabqa air base which extremists seized on Sunday, potentially handing them warplanes, tanks, artillery and ammunition.

The video, which has not been independently verified, is too graphic to be published in full.

It begins by showing dozens of men being marched through the desert wearing only their underwear. It then fades to black, resuming with a pile of bloodied bodies stacked on top of one another.

Read more:

Barisan must own up to sedition charges against Pakatan, says DAP

DAP parliamentary leader Lim Kit Siang is asking Barisan Nasional and ministers in the Cabinet to own up for the sedition charges against Pakatan leaders. – The Malaysian Insider pic, August 28, 2014. Barisan Nasional component parties and Cabinet ministers must be held accountable for the sedition charges being slapped on Pakatan Rakyat leaders, DAP parliamentary leader Lim Kit Siang said.

He said it was not just Attorney-General Tan Sri Abdul Gani Patail and Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak who must be held responsible for this “new despotism” in Malaysia.

"The BN component parties and leaders must either dissociate themselves from the democratic regressions or must be held whether as principals or as having aided and abetted in the New Despotism," said Lim in a statement.

Lim said Najib's new despotism had even topped Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad in using the Sedition Act to stifle dissent.

He said Najib was setting a record for invoking the draconian law against Pakatan MPs and assemblymen, which he added was ironic since he pledged in July 2012 that the Sedition Act would be abolished in line with Putrajaya's transformation plan.

"Five MPs, including the late Karpal Singh and one state assemblyman, had been charged with sedition in the six-year Najib premiership, while the 22 years of Dr Mahathir had seen only one MP charged, jailed and disqualified as a parliamentarian… Lim Guan Eng.

"Of course, Dr Mahathir had recourse to the notorious detention-without-trial Internal Security Act but this is no excuse for the advent under the Najib premiership of a new despotism against democratic liberties through the Sedition Act and other repressive laws," he said in a statement today.

The move, described as Putrajaya's attempt at silencing its political foes, has seen Pakatan leaders being charged with sedition over the last few days.

They are: PKR vice-presidents Rafizi Ramli and N. Surendran, Shah Alam MP and PAS central committee member Khalid Samad, and DAP Seri Delima assemblyman R. S. N. Rayer.

DAP Seputeh MP Teresa Kok and PKR Batu MP Tian Chua are also facing trial for sedition, while former Perak MP and Changkat Jering assemblyman Nizar Jamaluddin was charged with criminal defamation for a statement he had allegedly made two years ago.

Under the Federal Constitution, an elected representative is disqualified from office if fined more than RM2,000 or jailed for a term exceeding one year.

Lim said if found guilty, the nation will face five parliamentary and two state by-elections.

There is also another threat of a by-election in Permatang Pauh, if opposition leader Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim failed in his appeal at the Federal Court on October 28 and 29 to strike out the Court of Appeal decision which found him guilty of sodomising his former aide. – August 28, 2014.

- See more at:

Quit if you can't serve, MIC chief told

Former MIC Youth chief T Mohan has told his party president to resign if he cannot serve the Malaysian Indian community.

"If G Palanivel does not have the hunger to serve the community, he should resign and hand his position to a more capable person," he said in a statement issued late yesterday.

Mohan was livid with the president over his delay in nominating a party leader for the post of senator.

"As president, he should have followed up with Perak Menteri Besar Zambry Abd Kadir, instead of dwelling on a meeting that took place three months ago," he added.

Mohan was referring to Palanivel's meeting with Prime Minister Najib Abdul Razak at the Perak convention on the matter of appointing a senator.

"I am also perplexed as to why Palanivel has not taken the initiative, as president of the party, to nominate someone for the post.

"He was informed of it six months ago," he said, referring to Zambry's statement that he has already informed Palanivel about the matter earlier.

Mohan also criticised Palanivel for constantly blaming Najib for the delay, calling it a lame excuse.

"He should have taken the initiative to have a discussion with Najib, submit names and get his approval," he noted.

According to Mohan, one of the reasons why there is a delay in appointing a MIC senator is because of Palanivel giving assurances to several dozen candidates for the post.

This has happened before

Mohan also pointed out that MIC has seen this problem before, when Palanivel took two years to submit names when two posts for senators from MIC fell vacant in 2012.

"It was only after my statement, as well as others questioning the delay in the appointment of the senators early this year that led to the appointment of former MIC Youth chief SA Vigneswaran and R Goonasekaran in June," he added.

He also questioned the re-nomination of two senators, V Subramaniam and A Sivabakiam, which was done in a flash on July 1 when their senate terms only expire at the end of this month.

"Is it because both senators are Palanivel's close allies and he is thus beholden to them?" Mohan asked.

Citing another example of poor leadership, Mohan said the mid-term review of the Fifth Malaysia Plan is ongoing but MIC has been lackadaisical about initiating meetings and providing the government with input.

On the other hand, Mohan applauded Zambry for providing the nation with a "clearer picture" on the tussle regarding the senator's post.

Vell Paari: It's obvious who is lying

Meanwhile, MIC strategy director S Vell Paari said the spat does not bode well for both BN and MIC, especially for the latter, which does not have any elected representatives in the state.

"Compared to other states, the Perak menteri besar has been much more generous to MIC even though we have no elected representatives. He has given MIC the positions of speaker, special advisor and special officer.

"But going by the latest turn of events, one does not have to be a rocket scientist to figure out who is responsible for the delay. It is quite obvious who is not telling the truth," he added in an obvious reference to Palanivel.

Vell Paari said there is no need to drag Zambry into this issue, especially asking him to make the candidate announcement.

"He has no vested interests in this issue. Why should he? What has he got to gain or lose over the appointment of a MIC senator?" he pointed out.

"If there is an issue then it is something that Palanivel has to take up with PM and not Zambry. The power to recommend the candidate is the prerogative of the party president.

"So to involve the menteri besar in this issues is incomprehensible. Unless like how the PM's name was used to escape criticism over the extensions of the two senates.

"So should a candidate be chosen and masking it to look as if the candidate was the menteri besar's decision, hence can escape criticism from others in Perak who were promised the senate seat," he added.

Kula says Najib forgets his 'manly' challenge

DAP national vice-chairperson M Kulasegaran reminded Prime Minister Najib Razak of his 2012 call to the opposition to disdain street rallies and fight at the ballot box, which was the manly thing to do.

"Why the preference now by the PM for the less manly weapon of the Sedition Act to fight the opposition?" queried the MP for Ipoh Barat.

Kulasegaran was referring to the spate of charges against opposition legislators filed in the courts the past few days, which the federal legislator said indicated that Najib was "caving in to pressure to flex his muscles in order to show he is not a weak leader."

"In 2012, when faced with a huge gathering of opposition supporters at a street rally, the PM challenged demonstrators to fight him the manly way - at the ballot box," recalled Kulasegaran.

"We can excuse the PM for his pledge in September 2011 to make Malaysia the best democracy, but we can't allow him to forget his challenge to our manliness," he remarked.

"A challenge based on manliness goes to the heart of one's sense of self and with the PM now backing away from it in preference for repression of the opposition through use of a colonial era law, he is saying he has no identity," commented the DAP leader.

"The fact that the opposition has bested the government at the ballot box in the 2013 general election has not acted as a restraint on the PM in his choice of options to fight his critics.

"Najib's sense of manliness has not embarrassed him into a proper humility at his government's loss to the opposition for the popular vote in the 2013 election.

"Instead, more than a year after that rebuke, it seems to have driven him to the desperate option of repression through use of the Sedition Act which is an unmanly thing to do," argued Kulasegaran.

He said the country could no longer tolerate the PM's crisis of self-identity - whether to identify himself as a liberal and a moderate or be a poseur and a masquerade.

"You are either one or the other but PM thinks he can be both and that the people would tolerate his dissembling," said Kulasegaran.

Indian court orders DNA tests to settle cow dispute

A court in India’s southern state of Kerala has settled a legal dispute between two women over the ownership of a cow after conducting DNA tests, a news report said today.

A woman called Geetha alleged that her cow was stolen by another woman named as Sasilekha in a nearby village two years ago. Geetha filed a police complaint and the case went to in court.

The court in Kollam city ordered DNA tests after Geetha said one of her other cattle was the mother of the disputed cow, and could prove she was the original owner.

The tests showed that the DNA of the cows did not match and the court yesterday gave Sasilekha possession of the bovine, the Hindustan Times daily reported.

“It is a rare case. Perhaps, the first time a DNA test was held on a cow to find out its real owner,” N Chandra Babu, the lawyer for Sasilekha, said.

He said he was planning to seek compensation from Geetha for “undue mental agony” inflicted on his client.

Many families in India are farmers who earn their livelihood through cattle-breeding. Cows are also held sacred in the predominantly Hindu nation.

- dpa

PAS snubs Anwar's plea, insists on two names - Malaysiakini

PAS continues to snub Anwar Ibrahim by rejecting his plea and insisting that it will submit two names to the Selangor palace for the menteri besar's post.

Speaking to Malaysiakini, PAS secretary-general Mustafa Ali (right) said the Islamic party will abide by the ruler's decree.

"We must not be seen to be forcing the palace (by submitting one name)," he said, adding that it is not good in terms of Malay ethics.

In view of this, PAS will be nominating PKR president Dr Wan Azizah Wan Ismail and her deputy Azmin Ali as agreed at its central committee meeting on Aug 17.

Furthermore, he said by nominating Wan Azizah Wan Ismail, PAS is displaying sufficient respect to its Pakatan Rakyat ally.

"There is nothing wrong to send in more than one name. He (Azmin) is the deputy president, the next in line after Kak Wan, it's a natural choice even for PKR," he said, despite Azmin giving his full backing to Wan Azizah's candidacy.

This afternoon, Anwar pleaded with PAS to adhere to the Aug 17 Pakatan council's decision to only propose Wan Azizah for the post.

Before it was not public

On Tuesday, the sultan requested Pakatan parties to submit "two or more names", with the deadline set for next Wednesday.

However, PKR and DAP, citing convention, disclosed that only Wan Azizah's (below) name will be submitted.

PAS' contradicting stands on the Selangor crisis has strained ties with its allies, with Selangor DAP leaders even mulling the need for the opposition bloc's continued existence.

Quizzed on the ruler having requested for more than one name after the last two general elections, Mustafa explained that the situation is different now.

"At that time, it was not an open matter. Now, it is revealed to the public. We must take into consideration public perception," he said.

He said the party would not like to be perceived as openly defying the ruler.

Selangor crisis today

8.28am: Gerakan urges PKR and DAP to not insist on Wan Azizah as it will only prolong the crisis and their goal to unseat Khalid has been reached.

12.58pm: Anwar urges PAS to respect the Pakatan leadership council’s Aug 17 decision to only nominate Wan Azizah

1pm: Umno MP Shamsul Anuar Nasarah says the crisis is prolonged because Pakatan has no direction

2.46pm: Former MCA president Dr Chua Soi Lek says Anwar will control Selangor if Wan Azizah is MB

4.26pm: Law professors say acceding to the sultan's decree for multiple candidates will put the sultan in a tight spot as only Wan Azizah commands majority support.

5.30pm: PAS snubs Anwar’s appeal that PAS submit only Wan Azizah’s name, and will include PKR deputy president Azmin Ali’s name, too

6.15pm: After PAS says it doesn’t want to force the sultan to choose Wan Azizah, PKR points out that PAS didn’t mind forcing the palace in 2008 and 2013

DAP to PAS: Why don’t you join UMNO?

PAS might be better off declaring it wants to get out of Pakatan and to implement its Islamist agenda in Kelantan, says Ariff Sabri.

PETALING JAYA: Raub MP Ariff Sabri Abdul Aziz of DAP has told PAS to consider quitting Pakatan Rakyat so that it can team up with Umno.

“If it thinks the way forward to govern Malaysia is by having political union with Umno, we must not stop it,” Ariff said in his latest blog entry at Sakmongkol AK47.

“PAS might be better off declaring it wants to get out of Pakatan and state that it wishes to implement its Islamist agenda in the state that it now controls, Kelantan.

“Then it can make Kelantan a showcase on the beauty of implementing hudud and all other Islamist agenda.”

However, Ariff said PAS could count on Pakatan’s support for its agenda if it was willing to work with the coalition.

“If PAS still prefers to work with Pakatan, all other Pakatan parties can support the PAS agenda,” he said.

Turning to the recent turn of events in the Selangor MB saga, Ariff said, “Before the Umno people pompously claim that they would do anything to protect the institution of the monarchy, let me remind them, the thing that we must protect is representative democracy. “That should take precedence,” he said.

The MP said Umno “royalists” should stop “clumsily invoking threats” on people who speak of the monarchy and inserting a racist element into the issue.

“Speaking of the monarchy should not be read as an affront by non-Malays against Malays,” he added.

The role of the state monarch in appointing the MB is being scrutinised by various parties and analysts after the Sultan of Selangor ordered PAS, PKR and DAP to submit more than two names as candidates for the Menteri Besar post.

Anwar has locked himself into a paradox

Khalid remained convinced his replacement can be anyone except Datuk Seri Dr Wan Azizah Wan Ismail (the nepotistic wife) or Azmin Ali (the blind royalist), PKR president and deputy president, respectively.

Azmi Anshar, NST

THE diabolically messy Selangor menteri besar power wrangle has arrived at devilish crossroads, a flashpoint of fear, uncertainty and doubt that just cannot resolve as to which elected representative can eventually replace Tan Sri Abdul Khalid Ibrahim without infuriating the palace.

It’s now known that Khalid’s gruelling method to (finally) quit his untenable MB’s job had a causal conviction — his replacement can be anyone except Datuk Seri Dr Wan Azizah Wan Ismail or Azmin Ali, PKR president and deputy president, respectively.

Khalid remained convinced, an attitude shared by his Pas backers, that Dr Wan Azizah and Azmin, while arguably equipped in savvy political/leadership horse sense, are severely compromised by Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim’s dodgy baggage — she as the nepotistic wife, while he as the blind loyalist.

That’s why Khalid remained pugnacious to the last, conscientiously repelling his PKR bosses’ boorish attempt to replace him through the feckless “Kajang Move”, mooted initially as the grand design to “save Selangor”, but exposed as a conspiracy to inject steroids into Anwar’s crumbling bid to become prime minister.

Construing correctly the plot, Khalid negotiated an intricate exit strategy that would be endorsed by the sultan of Selangor, while preserving the RM3.2 billion state coffers that, without someone like Khalid to oversee, would whittle away recklessly in record time.

Despite being outed as outlandish power grabbers, Anwar and his ilk remain unrepentant, mulishly maintaining that Dr Wan Azizah is the sole MB nominee but competing against a top-contending Azmin, which belligerently defies the sultan of Selangor’s demands for more nominees.

Reports abound that the sultan of Selangor is disturbed by PKR/DAP’s letter seeking His Highness’ discretion in accepting a sole nominee in Dr Wan Azizah, following the precedent set last year, when Khalid was the sole candidate for the MB’s post after the 13th General Election, a setting Khalid has denied.

Clearly, the sultan of Selangor has seen through the PKR/DAP manoeuvring, in which he will not be brazenly pushed into an ultimatum that stops him from considering alternative nominees.

In this instance, the likes of Ijok assemblyman Dr Idris Ahmad, 67, scion of PKR and a successful gynaecologist who has delivered the babies of Kuala Lumpur’s movers and shakers, and Cempaka assemblyman Iskandar Abdul Samad, Pas’ 47-year-old outsider, are plausible pretenders to the position.

You’d expect the sultan to prevail in this confrontation, backed by convention and the constitution, but given PKR/DAP’s tendency to overreact obstinately if they don’t get their way, whoever is anointed by His Highness is expected to serve in choppy waters.

Nevertheless, the snap state polls to resolve the leadership catastrophe dreaded by virtually everyone will be averted if the sultan’s choice of nominee for the MB’s post is accepted by the warring parties.

Once the complex permutations on who gets to finally replace Khalid are finally sorted out, Khalid must be owed a huge apology by harsh critics, who have underhandedly accused him of trying to cling to power.

If there ever was a power-hungry embodiment of this nine-month pickle, it is Anwar, to whom it can be traced the origins of this silly MB crisis.

However, at the rate that the realpolitik is playing out, the biggest loser will be Anwar, an outcome not unwelcome by Pas or even DAP, who never condoned Anwar, but only sucked up to him because he is the only player able to glue the fractious axis.

Anwar’s mad and fixated ambition to be prime minister is the troubling political narrative undistracted by the tragedies of our times, but tell that to Anwar, who will reverse in recoil position until he schemes the next gambit.

He may not realise this yet, but Anwar has locked himself into a classic paradox: because of him, the axis secured strong gains in the 12th and 13th General Elections, but because of him, the majority of parliamentary voters won’t give him the Federal Government and the coveted federal premiership.

Kok says it again: Kamalanathan must apologise

The Seputeh MP calls for full release of facts and figures on public university intake of medical students.

KUALA LUMPUR: DAP vice-chairperson Teresa Kok today reiterated her call for Deputy Education Minister P.Kamalanathan to apologise to the public for “making a false claim” that the Malaysian Medical Council (MMC) requested a reduction in intakes of medical students to public universities.

In a media statement, Kok also said the “public are entitled to ask if there have been intentional moves to try to avoid giving the accurate and full facts to them.”

The MP from Seputeh was responding to Health Minister S. Subramaniam’s denial that MMC had any role in the annual reductions of intake since academic year 2011/2012.

Figures disclosed by Subramaniam showed that 1,550 places for medical students had been allocated to 11 public universities but only 919 had been filled so far. Referring to this, Kok asked, “Why have they decided to only accept 919 students? Since the question of qualified applicants does not arise as many top scorers have complained of not being offered the medical programmes, could fund shortage or lack of staff be the issue?”

Kok called on Education Minister Muhyiddin Yassin to “show transparency and reveal the full facts and figures” on the intake of medical students by public universities.

Another DAP MP, Teo Nie Ching, said in a separate statement that increasing the intake numbers alone would not solve Malaysia’s lack of properly trained medical professionals.

“We need to ensure the students have adequate training at a later stage,” she said

Najib’s despotism worse than Dr M’s “Dark Age”

Lim Kit Siang says that far from being the best democracy, Najib is using the Sedition Act to suppress the opposition.

KUALA LUMPUR: DAP’s Lim Kit Siang said Prime Minister Najib Tun Razak’s heavy-handed use of the Sedition Act to silence the opposition was “putting to shame Tun Dr.Mahathir’s 22-year ‘Dark Age’”.

The DAP Parliamentary leader said, “We are looking at the likelihood of six parliamentary and two state assembly by-elections as a result of the recent spate of arrests and prosecution of PR leaders.”

Lim said it was “the height of irony” that Najib announced in July 2012 that the Sedition Act would be abolished as part of his National Transformation Plan.

He added that far from being the “best democracy in the world”, Najib had achieved just the opposite with his brand of despotism.

“Five MPs and one state assemblyman had been charged with sedition in the six-year Najib premiership,” Lim explained.

While he admitted Dr.M “had recourse to the notorious detention-without-trial Internal Security Act”, he said it did not excuse Najib for silencing the opposition by using the sedition act “and a panoply of undemocratic and repressive laws” time and again.

Lim also said the blame lay not on Najib’s shoulders alone but Attorney-General Gani Patail and all cabinet ministers in the ruling administration.

He also said, “…all the Barisan Nasional component parties and leaders must either dissociate themselves from the democratic regressions or be held whether as principals or as having aided and abetted in the New Despotism in Malaysia.”

In the last ten days Rafizi Ramli, N.Surendran, Khalid Samad, RSN. Rayer and Nizar Jamaluddin have all been hauled to court on charges of sedition as have Teresa Kok and Tian Chua.

Anwar Ibrahim may also lose his seat in Permatang Pauh should he fail in his appeal at the Federal Court on the sodomy charge.

Are companies hiring based on race?

MTEM wants public-listed companies to publish analysis of racial diversity.

KUALA LUMPUR: The Securities Commission should consider a regulation to make public-listed companies publish a diversity analysis in their annual reports.

The Malay Economic Action Council (MTEM) said by doing this, civil society and shareholders would know if a company had utilised racial profiling in it’s hiring practices.

Its chief executive officer Nizam Mahshar said even some Forbes 100 companies declared diversity within their organisational structures.

Nizam also suggested corporations reveal the salary ratio of their chief executive officers to average workers within their companies.

“Investors should take into account the Drucker Institute’s recommendation that the proper ratio between a CEO and an average worker should not exceed 20:1,” he said.

Around 30% of Malaysian workers are earning below RM2,000 a month, according to figures published by the Employees Provident Fund.

MTEM also said Pemandu should monitor how much local corporations were paying employees at the lowest level since the latter was pushing for Malaysia to become a high-income nation with employees taking home RM45,000 annually or RM3,750 per month.

MTEM said they fully backed Prime Minister Najib Razak’s call to the corporate sector to use best practices and declare the diversity within their organisational structures.

Terrorism experts see long, tough battle to contain Islamic State

While the world has recoiled in horror at the atrocities committed by Islamic State radicals, the violence has helped the militant group recruit a global force of extremists and furthered its pursuit of a fundamentalist Muslim caliphate in the heart of the Middle East, terrorism experts say.

The United States and its Western allies have responded with airstrikes on militant positions in Iraq and relief operations for the victims of the Al Qaeda splinter group's campaign of violence.

But the air attacks on Islamic State fighters in Iraq and contemplation of similar action in war-torn Syria will do little more than temporarily curb the militants' momentum as the international community struggles to find a long-term solution to their destabilizing threat, analysts say.

"There is no short-term fix that will completely defeat this threat, so it's important to differentiate between stopping ISIS' momentum and ending or defeating them as an organization," said Janine Davidson, senior fellow for defense policy at the Council on Foreign Relations. She was referring to the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria, as the group called itself before proclaiming its caliphate two months ago.

Without forces in Syria and Iraq to identify targets and ensure that civilian communities aren't vulnerable, airstrikes alone are unlikely to roll back the Islamic State militants who have seized large swaths of territory in those countries, Davidson said.

Targeted strikes can and have taken out militant positions and training camps and can undermine the group's image as a force "screaming through Iraq with one military success after another," Davidson said. But air power alone won't do more than chase the militants from one stronghold to another or counter their sophisticated use of social media to recruit and raise funds, she said.

In an interview discussing Western states' limited options for containing the militants, she said they should focus on forming regional security alliances with Iraq's and Syria's Middle East neighbors and on reform of the Iraqi government that so excluded and repressed Sunni Muslims that many welcomed the militants when they overran northern Iraq.

The Islamic State battlegrounds and gruesome execution of enemies have become a magnet for aspiring militants around the world, said Christopher Chivvis, a senior political scientist at Rand Corp.

Chivvis estimates the number of foreign fighters who have joined Islamic State and other militant Sunni factions at 10,000, including as many as 3,000 carrying European passports and a "not insignificant number" from the United States. On Tuesday, White House officials confirmed that a San Diego man, Douglas McAuthur McCain, had died in Syria fighting for Islamic State.

"People like to be on the winning team and right now it looks like ISIS is winning," Chivvis said. "They have effectively challenged Al Qaeda as leader of global jihad, offering a different model for what jihad ought to look like -- more violent, more locally focused, but equally extreme."

If the United States and its allies want to combat Islamic State's power to attract disaffected and marginalized Muslims, broad international cooperation is required in law enforcement and intelligence sharing, Chivvis said. He pointed to the U.S. turn at the U.N. Security Council presidency in September as an opportunity to galvanize coordinated efforts to counter the extremists' message.

Like Davidson, Chivvis sees little prospect of Western states collaborating with Syrian President Bashar Assad to roll back their common enemy, Islamic State. It would be politically and operationally problematic, he said, as Assad is accused of committing war crimes against his own people.

An independent U.N. investigative commission on Wednesday issued a scathing report accusing all combatants in Syria of inflicting "immeasurable suffering" on civilians, including the Assad government's sarin gas attacks on suburbs of Aleppo a year ago and barrel-bombing of opposition-held villages in the provinces of Idlib and Hama with chlorine gas in April.

Jeffrey Bale, a historian and scholar of political and religious extremism at the Monterey Institute of International Studies, criticized the Obama administration and its European allies for ruling out collaboration with Assad, whom he sees as the lesser of two evils.

“The regime in Syria is fighting for its own survival, using brutal methods and not concerning themselves with civilian casualties. But neither are the jihadists -- they are deliberately targeting civilians and anyone they consider insufficiently Islamic,” Bale said.

“We should be collaborating with the Assad regime and with the Iranians, who already have Revolutionary Guards in Iraq, to weaken and destroy the operational capabilities of Islamic State. It's not like we're not doing this anywhere else in the world,” he said, pointing out U.S. alliances with authoritarian governments in Pakistan, Saudi Arabia and elsewhere.

“We have to assess what is the No. 1 threat,” Bale said. “What would be catastrophic is if Islamic State was able to establish permanent control over the heartland of the Middle East.”

Bale also said that the United States and its allies were too timid in their initial strikes against Islamic State fighters when they were traveling on open roads in celebratory convoys after seizing the northern Iraqi city of Mosul in June.

“Whenever we observe Islamic State fighters away from heavily civilian areas we should be launching devastating attacks on them with the full panoply of weapons from aircraft,” he said.

“Obviously, once these guys are back in big urban areas surrounded by civilians, it’s much more difficult to target them from the air,” he said. “Now they are hunkered down using civilians as shields.”

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Putrajaya’s sedition dragnet an attack on freedom of expression, say lawyers

Malay Mail

KUALA LUMPUR, Aug 28 — The recent spate of probes and court actions under the controversial Sedition Act 1948 reeks of a government clamp down on dissenting views, lawyers claimed as authorities slapped two separate sedition charges on a Penang state assemblyman yesterday.
Legal experts argued that Putrajaya is relying on questionable grounds to charge RSN Rayer for allegedly insulting Umno — the dominant party in the ruling Barisan Nasional coalition — on two separate occasions.

“The government of Malaysia in 2014 is relying on a legislation that was introduced by the colonial government in 1948 to protect itself and to stop people from criticising its policies and governance,” Bar Council human rights committee chairman Andrew Khoo told Malay Mail Online when contacted.

“It is highly regrettable that the government should rely on a colonial mentality and legislation to deny the people the right to be critical either of the government or on the administration of justice,” he added.

Khoo said it was too early to say if the government is indeed actively trying to silence its critics despite the apparent “overuse” of the Act, but stressed that Putrajaya’s actions run counter to Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak’s 2012 promise to repeal the legislation.

Lawyers for Liberty (LFL) executive director Eric Paulsen, however, said that the government has clearly been “misusing” the Sedition Act to persecute opposition politicians and quash public dissent.
The use of the Act against the late DAP chairman Karpal Singh, former PKR vice-president N. Surendran and PAS Selangor deputy commissioner Khalid Samad were examples that an individual need not act in a seditious manner to be liable for the offence, he said.

Prior to his death in April, Karpal was found guilty of sedition by the Kuala Lumpur High Court for questioning the Sultan of Perak’s decision to remove Datuk Seri Mohammad Nizar Jamaluddin as Perak mentri besar in 2009.

Surendran was charged last week for criticising the Court of Appeal’s ruling against PKR de-facto leader Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim in the latter’s second sodomy appeal, while Khalid was charged yesterday for questioning the powers of the Selangor Islamic Religious Council (Mais) and the Sultan of Selangor.

“In the current climate, the Act is being used to persecute the opposition. Whether what was said or by way of conduct is seditious or not, is irrelevant,” Paulsen said.

Civil liberties lawyer New Sin Yew noted that part of the problem lies with the vague definition of seditious behaviour outlined in the Act, particularly the point on “exciting disaffection” against the aggrieved party.

“The problem is, ‘exciting disaffection’ is quite vague. I may insult you, but insulting you may not bring disaffection. If I say ‘go to hell, the government’, it may not cause many people to be dissatisfied with the government.

“We have the fundamental right to insult our leaders and the government. Insulting and exciting disaffection are different,” he said when met earlier.

New also stressed that Umno and the government are separate entities, noting that the Sedition Act only criminalises incitement against the government, but not political parties.  

Constitutional lawyer Syahredzan Johan stressed that the developments have effectively narrowed public discourse to what the government decides can be said out in the open.

“With sedition looming large in the background, it has really stifled freedom of expression. Even I find myself treading carefully when commenting on the Ruler’s powers... I shouldn’t, but I don’t want to get into trouble either.

“And this is not good. If people are going to be constantly mindful and hold back from saying something, even if it is criticism that is constructive, what you’re doing is stifling the exchange of ideas,” he said.

The Centre for a Better Tomorrow (Cenbet), meanwhile, demanded that the Attorney-General (A-G) explain why it is a criminal offence for an elected representative to criticise a political party in a state assembly.

The organisation said in a statement that the onus falls on the A-G to clearly spell out the terms for using the Act, or end up reinforcing public perception that it is being used arbitrarily or selectively

“Such prosecution would criminalise common conversation among the people in Malaysia and be seen as favouring one political party over the other,” the group said.