Share |

Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Dr Mahathir: Umno lack guts to criticise its leaders

New Iraqi comedy show aims to counter Islamic State extremists

By Loveday Morris

BAGHDAD — Reclining on a gold-rimmed purple sofa, the leader of the Islamic State extremist group mulls his social-media strategy as an overaffectionate sword-wielding dwarf looks on.

Here’s the town drunk, who has become a zealous follower of the Islamic State, beating those who consume alcohol — though he still drinks in secret himself.

And there’s the shop owner who is informed that vegetables with names in the Arabic language that are female in gender can’t mix with those of the male gender.

That’s right, a new weapon has been unleashed in this country devastated by Islamist militant violence — comedy.

A new 30-part satirical series, “State of Myths,” which started airing on Iraqi state television Saturday, aims to expose the true nature of the Islamic State extremist organization — through slapstick and puns.

The show demonstrates the extraordinary ability of people in this war-scarred nation to challenge violence with humor. But making light of the group notorious for beheadings and massacres brings serious risks. Some of the cast members have not allowed their names to appear on the show’s credits, while the scriptwriter has insisted on remaining anonymous.

The comedy also shows something else: the jaundiced view that many Iraqis have of the countries that are coming to their government’s defense against the militants. The original trailer for the series played into widely held conspiracy theories alleging that the United States, Qatar and Israel were responsible for the rise of the Islamic State. That idea, however, was scrapped after executives decided that amid a U.S-led bombing campaign, ridiculing their allies had become too sensitive.
The power of laughter

Set in a fictional Iraqi town that is taken over by the extremists, the show now concentrates on poking fun at Islamic State rule instead.

The local drunk takes on the uncompromising passion of a convert — which doesn’t interfere with the hypocrisy of enjoying a few drinks on the side.

Raqi rapes girl to 'exorcise' jinn from her womb

A Saudi Raqi (religious healer) raped a girl who visited him for treatment of a psychological illness after misleading her into believing her womb was haunted by the jinn (spirits), a newspaper reported on Monday.

The Raqi in the capital Riyadh told the girl he has the powers to exorcise jinns in one session if she accepts his recipe at his home.

Once the girl, whose age was not specified, surrendered to the man, he raped her, causing her to lose virginity, 'Arar' Arabic language daily said.

Police arrested the Raqi after the girl realised her mistake and reported him despite his threats to expose her if she resorts to the police.

“He told her that her womb was haunted by the jinn and that he wanted to exorcise them,” the report quoted the police as stating.

The paper said social networks in Saudi Arabia went viral in reaction to the crime and that hundreds of readers slammed both the Raqi and the girl.

“It appears our society is still living in the dark ages…almost every sin and vice are practiced under the cover of religion…we would like to ask the justice and interior ministries: shouldn’t the Raqi considered a sorcerer, who must be punished,” said Souad Al Shammari, a prominent Saudi activist.

But another reader, Sarah Al Waleed, had a completely different opinion. “The woman who simply surrenders herself to a Raqi claiming to have such powers is stupid.”

A reader identified as Dalal agreed by saying:”Why blaming only the Raqi…how could such a stupid girl allow this man to do this to her.”

Isis threat real, is government taking it seriously, asks Dr M

Former prime minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad said that the Islamic State threat was much closer to home than the government was willing to admit. – The Malaysian Insider file pic, September 29, 2014.As the threat of the Islamic State (Isis) gets closer, Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad today asked whether the government was taking the matter seriously.

Malaysia's longest serving prime minister wrote in his blog today that the threat was much closer to home than the government was willing to admit as there were now reports of Malaysians joining rebel groups in Syria.

There were also reports that Muslims from the Philippines, Indonesia, and even Singapore were taking part in the rebellion, he said, adding that according to news reports, there were now more than 30,000 Isis jihadists.

"Every day, more and more Muslims, in Europe and Asia, are leaving to join Isis.

"All this is happening in the Middle East, far from our country. (But) are we safe?" he asked.

Based on the current situation, Dr Mahathir said there was a possibility that rebels from neighbouring countries would launch an attack on Malaysia on the pretext of forming an Islamic nation.

"This idea of establishing an Islamic country is interesting, especially in the minds of Muslim youths everywhere as many are disappointed that there is no such establishment around that can be deemed the saviour of the religion, the believers and the country," he said.

Dr Mahathir also reminded Malaysians of the Islamic State’s cruelty in targeting not only its enemy, the Shias, but also fellow Sunnis whom they considered less Islamic or who were against their beliefs.

“This Isis group is so violent that they have no qualms of shooting captured Iraqi soldiers who are Muslims in the back, as seen in videos,” he said.

“In their own video, one of their followers also beheaded an American journalist and these people were claimed to be Muslims from Britain.”

Closer to home, Dr Mahathir said the Sabah intrusion last year and al-Maunah siege in 2000 were grim reminders that security threats to the country were real and present.

"Remember, Sabah happened. Here in the peninsula, we have the al-Maunah," he said.

He said it would not be hard for such groups to turn violent again if there were calls to form their version of an Islamic country here.

"The government, until now, doesn't seem to be taking the past intrusions seriously. Kidnappings are still happening. Now, there are calls for Sabah to leave Malaysia.

"If for instance, this call is equated with the idea of forming an Islamic nation, more youngsters will be easily influenced," he said.

"But the government seems to be unaware of this. No action is being taken... and the Internal Security Act [is] gone.

"Remember, no one expected militants would strike Sabah, but it happened!" he said. – September 29, 2014.

Youth NGO wants PAS to stop causing trouble in Pakatan

Safwan, who was sentenced to jail on September 5, is currently out pending an appeal against his conviction. - The Malaysian Insider pic, September 29, 2014.Fed up with PAS’s insistence on prolonging the Selangor Menteri Besar (MB) issue, a group of youths led by recently-convicted social activist Safwan Anang will hand over a letter to Datuk Seri Abdul Hadi Awang tomorrow demanding that the party toe the line in Pakatan Rakyat (PR).

Safwan, who was sentenced to 10 months imprisonment for sedition on September 5, said his group, Lensa Anak Muda Malaysia (Lensa) had concluded that PAS had caused the Selangor MB crisis that saw PR on the brink of splitting up.

“Over the past few months, Lensa asked politicians, academics, what went wrong with PR and they all pointed to PAS and its flip-flop stance on the MB issue,” said Safwan, who founded Lensa in June and is the group’s executive director.

“The crisis should have ended by now, as the new MB has been sworn in already, but suddenly Selangor PAS is complaining that it never asked for its number of executive councillors to be reduced from four to three. This must stop.”

Safwan said he and about five other Lensa members would turn up at PAS’s headquarters in Jalan Raja Laut at 10am tomorrow to submit the letter to the party president titled “PAS must stop triggering tension”.

When asked why he was fighting this battle, Safwan said Lensa represented the voice of young voters in Malaysia who were banking on PR to take over Putrajaya and steer the country to a better direction.

“We are considered pro-PR because we know BN has no future, so why hope on BN any further? We want PR to provide new politics for Malaysians, otherwise there is no hope left at all for us,” said Safwan.

But he said youths were growing sick of PR, as reflected in its recent loss in Pengkalan Kubor, and that Lensa believed the sickness began with PAS.

Safwan said he had formed Lensa in June after leaving Solidariti Mahasiswa Malaysia (SMM), a group comprising students across Malaysia.

“Our objective is to evaluate the performance of both the government and the opposition after the general election and to create a new generation that is aware of democracy in Malaysia, and how they can play a part in it,” he said.

Safwan added that the recent sedition conviction against him had not deterred him from continuing his social activism, particularly his fight against the Sedition Act 1948.

“If I don’t fight, then it ends there. So I’ve made the decision to take up the fight and educate the youths on their rights,” he said.

The Sessions Court sentenced Safwan to 10 months’ jail on September 5 after it found him guilty of sedition.

Safwan was said to have uttered seditious statements to incite the public to remove the government by extra-legal means during a speech last year at a May 13 forum. – September 29, 2014.

Mahathir: Umno lacks guts to criticise its leaders

Umno needs to be reformed so that it can criticise its leaders more courageously, said former premier Dr Mahathir Mohamad today.

At present, the former Umno president claimed that the party's culture is to support its leaders without question.

"Yes, because the leader must be told about other views. A leader cannot just do whatever he likes," he told reporters in Putrajaya.

Mahathir said this when asked to comment on former New Straiuts Times (NST) group editor-in-chief A Kadir Jasin's statement that Umno is too weak to oust its current president Najib Abdul Razak.

Mahathir also confirmed earlier reports that he had written a letter to Najib criticising him and saying that he is withdrawing support for Najib. However he was later asked by an intermediary to retract it.

“I just said I would withdraw. I didn’t receive any reason (for the request), since he asked me to withdraw.

“Later on, I decided that the letter has got no effect on him, so that is when I put it on my blog. I said that leaders must accept criticism,” he said.

According to an Asia Sentinel report, the intermediary was Umno secretary-general Tengku Adnan Tengku Mansor and purportedly contained seven demands.

However, Tengku Adnan had denied the report, saying “There is no such thing”.

IPP purchases 'public money'

When asked what he thinks about Najib’s move to ignore his advice and whether it would be detrimental to the country, Mahathir replied, “I think a leader must listen to everybody, not just somebody around me.”

To a question about Kadir’s blog post that Mahathir is "curious" about 1Malaysia Development Berhad’s (1MDB) acquisition of independent power producers (IPPs), Mahathir said he raised the question because the public has the right to know.

“This is public money. Although it is borrowed money, it belongs to the government, and government spending must follow certain procedures.

"You cannot just spend money as you like,” he said, before elaborating on the parliamentary procedures involved.

He clarified that he was not speculating on any ulterior motive behind the deals.

In his blog, Kadir claimed that Tenaga Nasional Berhad (TNB) could acquire the IPPs for a token sum of money if its power purchasing agreement in not renewed.

The agreements last 21 years for gas-fired plants and 25 years for coal-fired plants, he said, and some of these that have been purchased have less than seven years left on the agreement and have long recovered their costs and substantial profits.

“Dr Mahathir was curious why 1MDB bought the ageing IPPs when the government could wait a few more years and get them for 'free'. Something is amiss,” he had written.

We will hunt you down every ‘wormhole’, IGP tells fugitive sex blogger

(Malay Mail Online) – Inspector-General of Police (IGP) Tan Sri Khalid Abu Bakar has vowed to search every ‘wormhole’ for Alvin Tan Jye Yee until the wanted Malaysian sex blogger is found, saying the youth’s repeated insults against the authorities on social media is “unforgivable”.

Khalid reminded Tan, who is now reportedly seeking asylum in the United States to escape Umno, that “every country has its own rules”.

“We will hunt him (Tan) even down the ‘lubang cacing’ (wormhole),” Khalid was quoted saying in Malay daily Utusan Malaysia today.

“He (Tan) thinks he can run. However every country has its rule and we will even track him down every wormhole.

“There is no forgiveness for those who use the social media to insult and incite,” the IGP added.

Tan, the fugitive Malaysian blogger slapped with multiple charges over his now-defunct sex blog and controversial Hari Raya greeting involving pork dish “bak kut teh”, resurfaced in the cyberspace recently, saying that he is now seeking political asylum in the US.

Singapore media agency Channel News Asia (CNA) reported Tan as saying he is fleeing from Umno — the mainstay party of Malaysia’s ruling coalition Barisan Nasional (BN), and had applied for asylum in the US in May.

“I’m busy starting a new life here (in the US), apart from awaiting my final asylum hearing. I’m here to seek political refuge from the tyranny of Umno — simple as that,” the 26-year-old was quoted telling the Singaporean broadcaster in an interview through his personal Facebook account.

Tan said he is optimistic of his chances of being granted asylum from the US government, citing the US Department of State’s 2013 Human Rights Report on Malaysia, which he said “explicitly cites my case as a repression of internet speech rights”.

“If all else fails, I can easily publish more ‘seditious’ materials on my Facebook to taunt the authorities and get them to be hot on the pursuit of me again, therefore creating an even more well-founded fear of political persecution to bolster my asylum claim,” he was quoted saying.

Tan and his ex-girlfriend Vivian Lee May Ling, 25, were hauled to court last July 18 and slapped with three charges, but the couple known as “Alvivi” managed to get the court to struck off a charge under Section 298A of the Penal Code.

Tan and Lee still face a charge under Section 4(1) of the Sedition Act for publishing a seditious photograph and the words “Selamat Berbuka Puasa” (dengan Bak Kut Teh…wangi, enak, menyelerakan!) [Happy breaking fast with bak kut teh...fragrant, delicious, appetising]” on their Facebook page last July 11 that also showed a halal logo.

They are also being tried for a second remaining charge under subsection 5(1) of the Film Censorship Act 2002 for displaying pornographic images on their blog,, between July 6 and July 7 last year.

The court had previously ordered the duo to surrender their passports and allowed them to be released on bail, but allowed them to temporarily take back their travel documents on May 18 this year to travel to Singapore to shoot a documentary.

Only Lee returned the passport on June 3, while Tan failed to show up on the scheduled date and went missing, leading the Kuala Lumpur Sessions Court to issue an arrest warrant and forfeit his RM20,000 bail.

Sex blogger insults Malaysian leaders in another Facebook post

Tan (in red shirt) faces another sedition probe for postings on his Facebook page in which he had superimposed pig snouts on the faces of several Malaysian leaders. – The Malaysian Insider pic, September 29, 2014.BY ELIZABETH ZACHARIAH

Sex blogger Alvin Tan has landed himself in hot water again following yet another sedition probe against him for postings on his Facebook page where he had also superimposed pig snouts on the faces of several Malaysian leaders, including the prime minister.

Astro Awani reported that police have launched an investigation against Tan, who had skipped bail and fled to the United States to seek asylum.

Tan had previously been charged along with his former partner Vivian Lee under the same Act for an offensive and controversial Ramadan greeting the couple had put up on Facebook in July last year.

“Members of the public have lodged reports against Alvin Tan. Upon this, we initiated an investigation under the Sedition Act," deputy federal CID chief Datuk Amar Singh was quoted as saying.

In a Facebook posting on September 26, Tan had slammed Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak, calling the latter a "coward" for the recent sedition dragnet which he called an effort to "cling on to the top post".

He had also superimposed pig snouts on the images of Najib, his wife Datin Seri Rosmah Mansor, Home Minister Datuk Seri Ahmad Zahid Hamidi, Attorney-General Tan Sri Abdul Gani Patail and Inspector-General of Police Tan Sri Khalid Abu Bakar.

In a show of defiance, Tan also tagged the five, telling their supporters to not bother alerting them of the "sedition" nature of the posting.

"Come jail me, please!!! Don't bother tagging your leaders here just to alert them of "sedition" happening over here. I've done it beforehand to save you the hassle," the posting read.

He had also likened Khalid, the nation's top cop to Germany's SS chief Heinrich Himmler, who was responsible for building Nazi concentration camps and had directed the killing of some millions of Jews during the Second World War.

"Yes, Khalid Abu Bakar, you're like the Nazi SS Commander Heinrich Himmler, no less, and let me tell you why: because you abused your power just because someone called you names you didn't like. You're a bully, a coward."

"Zahid Hamidi, you're the closest thing to true evil, and your day will come. I promise. There will be no mercy (tip: google 'Qaddafi')," he said.

Khalid had earlier vowed to go all out to look for Alvin despite the fact that he was in the US, promising to search every "worm hole" for the 26-year-old fugitive.

Tan, the IGP said, was rude and could not be forgiven because he had shamed some Malaysian leaders with his offensive pictures and status posts on his Facebook account.

"He thinks he can run. But every country has its own regulations and we will not give up looking for him," Khalid was quoted as saying by Utusan Malaysia.

The former law student at the National University of Singapore, and his then partner Vivian Lee, first came under the spotlight after uploading raunchy sex postings on their blog in 2012.

But it was their bak kut teh posting during Ramadan last year that landed them in hot water, and even in jail briefly – after they were charged under the Sedition Act and the Film Censorship Act.

Tan violated his bail conditions while on a supposed working trip to Singapore and is now on Interpol's wanted list.

After lying low for a while, he recently emerged on social media to make known his plans for asylum in the US and is believed to be in Los Angeles, California.

Tan told The Malaysian Insider recently that his decision to flee his homeland was to escape the government's "tyranny" as well as the "ignorance" of ordinary Malaysians. – September 29, 2014

Woman jailed for hitting kids, returns

Shalwati Norshal’s eldest daughter says she is excited and cannot wait to see her mother again.

KOTA BAHARU: “I am excited and cannot wait to meet my mother,” said Aishah Azizul Raheem, the eldest child of Shalwati Norshal who was sentenced to jail by the Solna District Court in Stockholm, Sweden for hitting her children.

Aishah, 14, said she was grateful and happy when told her mother would be released from prison today.

“What is even better is that we will get to celebrate Aidiladha with mother,” she told reporters at Kampung Wakaf Tok Wali, Melor yesterday.

She said she and her brothers, Ammar, 13, Adam, 12, and Ariff, 8, would make a special card to welcome their mother’s return and give her a bouquet of flowers.

Shalwati’s father, Norshal Nordin, 70, said he was thankful that his daughter would be coming home soon.

“At least, my daughter will be back with the family and I hope she can have a better life after this,” he said.

Shalwati was freed after serving a prison sentence in Sweden and was expected to return to Malaysia this Wednesday.

On March 29, Azizul Raheem, a Tourism Malaysia officer and his wife, Shalwati, were sentenced to imprisonment for hitting their four children.

Azizul Raheem, was released on July 9 after a three-month jail sentence in Sweden.

Shalwati, a teacher on unpaid leave, was sentenced to 14 months’ jail.

However, the sentences were reduced and both only needed to serve one-third of their jail term. – BERNAMA

Bila sistem pendidikan Malaysia kucar kacir…

…hancur musnahlah harapan Melayu.

Pendidikan tonggak harapan Melayu

Harapan bangsa Melayu hanya satu. Bermula daripada pendidikan seterusnya mendapatkan pekerjaan dan akhirnya meningkatkan taraf ekonomi mereka.

Tiga prinsip mudah itulah yang menjadi pegangan dan kepercayaan bangsa Melayu untuk mengubah hidup mereka sejak dari zaman penjajah lagi.

Pihak kerajaan di bawah pimpinan Umno dan Barisan Nasional sedar akan perkara itu dan sejak merdeka lagi, pelbagai usaha telah dilakukan bagi meningkatkan kualiti hidup bangsa Melayu dengan penekanan diberikan kepada usaha meningkatkan tahap pendidikan.

Hanya pendidikan sahaja yang dapat membantu bangsa Melayu.

Maktab Rendah Sains Mara (MRSM), Sekolah Berasrama Penuh (SBP), Kolej Melayu Kuala Kangsar (MCKK), dan pelbagai institusi berkaitan serta usaha telah dilakukan bagi membantu bangsa Melayu untuk memperolehi kehidupan yang lebih baik di masa akan datang.

Tidak terhenti di situ, di peringkat pendidikan tinggi, universiti seperti Universiti Teknologi Mara (UiTM) telah dibina khusus untuk membantu bangsa Melayu supaya dapat ‘bangun’ demi mendapat pekerjaan yang akan meningkatkan tahap ekonomi mereka.

Bahkan, semua Institut Pengajian Tinggi Awam (IPTA) di negara ini telah menyediakan kuota khas supaya bangsa Melayu berjaya menempatkan diri ke universiti.

Ijazah tidak laku

Namun demikian, sikap kerajaan yang membantu pelajar Melayu dengan memanjakan mereka akhirnya memakan diri apabila kualiti pelajar yang dihasilkan oleh universiti saban tahun semakin buruk.

Kini, ratusan, malah ribuan graduan Melayu menggangur walaupun sudah menggenggam ijazah.

Namun, bila segulung ijazah yang digenggam tidak punya kualiti, siapa yang mahu mengambil graduan seperti ini bekerja. Dewasa ini, kebanyakkan ijazah yang diterima tidak ‘laku’ dipasaran apatah lagi bila bersaing dengan graduan bangsa lain dari institusi luar.

Soalnya, bagaimana anak muda Melayu mahu mengubah nasib jika tiada majikan yang mahu menggaji mereka walau masing-masing berbekal bergulung-gulung ijazah? Apatah lagi bila kebanyakkan graduan Melayu ini gagal melengkapkan diri mereka dengan tahap keperluan industri yang tinggi.

Kegagalan PPSMI

Pada tahun 2003, isu Pengajaran dan Pembelajaran Sains dan Matematik dalam Bahasa Inggeris (PPSMI) memperlihatkan permainan ‘gila’ yang di eksperimen oleh pihak kerajaan dan akhirnya pada tahun 2012, dasar tersebut telah dimansuhkan.

Akhirnya, yang menjadi mangsa, pelajar-pelajar sendiri.

Kajian sebelum ini telah menunjukkan PPSMI memberi kesan buruk kepada pelajar di luar bandar.

Laporan Trends in Mathematics and Science Study 2007 menyatakan kedudukan pelajar Malaysia dalam subjek Sains merosot ke tangga 21 daripada tangga ke-20 pada 2003, sementara mata pelajaran Matematik pula daripada tangga ke-10 pada 2003 ke tangga ke-20 pada 2007.

Bahkan, kajian sebuah universiti tempatan pula menyatakan murid senang mempelajari sesuatu subjek dalam bahasa yang mudah difahami, iaitu bahasa Melayu di sekolah kebangsaan dan bahasa ibunda di SJK Cina dan Tamil.

Bayangkan betapa silapnya dasar yang diperkenalkan sebelum ini dan PPSMI wajar dijadikan sejarah hitam sistem pendidikan negara.

Skandal UPSR

Tidak terhenti di situ, baru-baru ini negara dikejutkan dengan isu kegagalan dan ketidaktelusan kertas Ujian Peperiksaan Sekolah Rendah (UPSR). Perkara ini turut diakui oleh Timbalan Perdana Menteri Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin.

Muhyiddin yang juga Menteri Pendidikan turut meminta maaf di atas insiden tersebut.

Kementerian tidak lagi akui peperiksaan percubaan SPM?

Tidak sampai sebulan, sekali lagi, pihak kerajaan sendiri secara tidak langsung telah mengaku bahawa mereka gagal membela nasib pendidikan di Malaysia apabila pihak Kementerian Pendidikan telah mengeluarkan notis pekeliling kepada Institusi Pengajian Tinggi Swasta (IPTS).

Pihak Kementerian Pendidikan telah memaklumkan bahawa kelayakan kemasukan pelajar lepasan sekolah ke program asasi atau pra universiti menggunakan keputusan peperiksaan percubaan SPM tidak lagi diterima bermula Januari.

Bagaimanakah pihak kerajaan yakin bahawa keputusan peperiksaan percubaan dan peperiksaan SPM itu memberikan perbezaan dalam penentuan tahap akademik pelajar?

Jika pelajar tersebut cemerlang di dalam peperiksaan percubaan, pastinya juga akan cemerlang di dalam peperiksaan sebenar. Namun dengan pemansuhan penggunaan peperiksaan percubaan SPM sebagai kelayakan kemasukan pelajar lepasan sekolah ke program asasi atau pra universiti, menunjukkan bahawa peperiksaan sebenar juga gagal membuktikan kecemerlangan pelajar.

Dengan sikap dan tindakan serta dasar-dasar yang diperkenalkan oleh pihak kerajaan jelas membuktikan bahawa kerajaan kini kelam kabut, kucar kacir, tidak menentu. Pastinya harapan Melayu untuk bangun berdiri sama tinggi dengan bangsa lain melalui pendidikan akan berkubur.

Pihak kerajaan harus mengimplementasikan satu sistem pendidikan yang lebih tinggi kualitinya daripada yang ada kini, supaya kualiti pendidikan terutamanya pendidikan untuk bangsa Melayu menjadi lebih tinggi untuk menjamin masa depan bangsa Melayu.

US admits there is a much scarier terrorist group than ISIS


New intelligence has emerged warning Washington that its upcoming confrontation with the Islamic State may leave it blind to a more sinister and direct threat from a much lesser known terrorist group that has arisen from the ashes of the Syrian war.

Very little information is being released at the moment by anyone within American intelligence circles, but the group calling itself Khorasan is said by officials to have concrete plans for striking targets in the United States and Europe as a chosen modus operandi – more so than the Islamic State (IS), formerly known as ISIS.

The first ever mention of the group occurred on Thursday at an intelligence gathering in Washington DC, when National Intelligence Director James Clapper admitted that “in terms of threat to the homeland, Khorasan may pose as much of a danger as the Islamic State.”

According to the New York Times, some US officials have gone as far as saying that, while the Islamic State is undoubtedly more prominent in its show of force in the Middle East, it is Khorasan who’s intent on oversees campaigns in a way Al Qaeda usually is.

In this sense, the US air strike campaign and the coming actions by the anti-IS coalition might just be what coaxes the IS into larger-scale attacks on American and European soil – what Khorasan is essentially all about.

This brings up another issue seen in the current Western stance on terrorism: it is so focused on the terror spread by the IS that it’s beginning to forget that the destruction and mayhem of civil war across the Middle East is spawning a number of hard-to-track terrorist factions with distinct missions.

“What you have is a growing body of extremists from around the world who are coming in and taking advantage of the ungoverned areas and creating informal ad hoc groups that are not directly aligned with ISIS or Nusra,” a senior law enforcement official told the NY Times on condition of anonymity.

The CIA and the White House declined to give comment.

According to government sources, the Al-Qaeda offshoot group is led by a former senior operative – 33-year-old Muhsin al-Fadhli, reportedly so close to Bin Laden’s inner circle he was one of the few who knew of the 9/11 Twin Tower attacks in advance.

He had reportedly fled to Iran during the US-led invasion of Afghanistan. Al Qaeda’s story goes hazy after the campaign: many operatives are said to have traveled to Pakistan, Syria, Iran and other countries, forming splinter groups.

In 2012, al-Fadhli was identified by the State Department as leading the Iranian branch of Al-Qaeda, controlling “the movement of funds and operatives” in the region and working closely with wealthy “jihadist donors” in his native Kuwait to raise money for the Syrian terrorist resistance.

Although the first public mention of the group was only this Thursday, American intelligence is said to have been tracking it for over a decade. Former President George W. Bush once mentioned the name of its leader in 2005 in connection with a French oil tanker bombing in 2002 off the coast of Yemen.

Khorasan itself is shrouded in mystery. Little is known publicly apart from its being composed of former Al-Qaeda operatives from the Middle East, North Africa and South Asia. The group is said to favor concealed explosives as a terror method.

Like many other groups taking up the power vacuum in war-torn Syria, Khorasan has on occasion shifted its alliances.

Fighters of the jihadist group Al-Nusra Front stand on the top of a pick-up mounted with a machine gun during fightings against the regime forces on April 4, 2013 in the Syrian village of Aziza, on the southern outskirts of Aleppo. (AFP Photo)Fighters of the jihadist group Al-Nusra Front stand on the top of a pick-up mounted with a machine gun during fightings against the regime forces on April 4, 2013 in the Syrian village of Aziza, on the southern outskirts of Aleppo. (AFP Photo)

Al-Qaeda leader Ayman al-Zawahiri at one point ordered the former ISIS to fight only in Iraq, but cut all ties with it when it disobeyed and branched out. The result was that the Nusra Front became Al-Qaeda’s official branch in Syria. It’s said that Khorasan is to Al Nusra Front what the latter was to Al-Qaeda.

When The Daily Signal spoke to James Phillips, a Middle East expert at The Heritage Foundation, he outlined some American intelligence views on the group: they see their mission in “[recruiting] European and American Muslim militants who have traveled to Syria to fight alongside Islamist extremist groups that form part of the rebel coalition fighting Syria’s Assad regime.”

“The Khorasan group hopes to train and deploy these recruits, who hold American and European passports, for attacks against Western targets,” he said.

He believes Khorasan to be Al-Qaeda’s new arm in attacking America, its “far enemy.” While they are Al Nusra’s allies in Syria, their role is believed to be to carry out terrorist attacks outside the country.

The group reportedly uses the services of a very prominent Al-Qaeda bomb maker, Ibrahim al-Asiri, whose devices previously ended up on three US-bound planes. He is known to be a true pioneer of hard-to-detect bombs.

Phillips believes that the next step is taking those bombs and pairing them with US-born and other foreign jihadists returning home.

Militant Islamist fighters take part in a military parade along the streets of Syria’s northern Raqqa province (Reuters)Militant Islamist fighters take part in a military parade along the streets of Syria’s northern Raqqa province (Reuters)

In this respect, Phillips views the Khorasan threat to the US to be much more direct compared to the Islamic State’s more regional ambitions. And since President Obama’s upcoming anti-IS strategy reportedly does not include Al Nusra, this potentially frees Khorasan’s hands.

What sets Al Nusra apart from the many other groups is that it’s now the only faction with active branches throughout Syria.

Syria analyst with the Institute for the Study of War, Jennifer Cafarella, told the NY Times “there is definitely a threat that, if not conducted as a component of a properly tailored strategy within Syria, the American strikes would allow the Nusra Front to fill a vacuum in eastern Syria.”

Because of al-Zawahiri’s current weakened position in terrorist cricles, both Al Nusra and Khorasan by extension are less prominent than the IS. But these things have a way of changing unpredictably, and because the plans of these more traditional terrorist groups in Syria aren’t yet clear, a danger arises.

The volatile conflict zone that is Syria, with its lax borders and an increasing number of distinct, armed Islamist groups, the US may be surprised by how difficult it soon may be to pinpoint the origin of the next threat.

No place for Sedition Act if we are to be a progressive democracy, say lawyers

Mukhriz's comment asking those against the Sedition Act to prove its weaknesses has come under fire from lawyers. - The Malaysian Insider pic, September 28, 2014.The Sedition Act must be removed from the statute book as it unfairly punishes individuals whose thoughts are against the views of the establishment, lawyers said.

The law is also the anti-thesis of democracy, rule of law, justice and human rights, they said in response to Umno supreme council member Datuk Seri Mukhriz Mahathir’s statement yesterday that those who were for repeal of the Sedition Act had yet to explain its weaknesses.

The lawyers said freedom of speech and expression was a manifestation of one's thought process and it was irrational to use the sedition law to mete out harsh sentences, like a jail term.

They said the law was used as an instrument of oppression, and is archaic and repressive.

Lawyer Amer Hamzah Arshad said the late Karpal Singh was convicted for sedition merely for explaining the law during the 2009 Perak constitutional crisis.

"Karpal only gave his opinion that the ruler can be taken to court because the constitution is supreme. That statement did not incite violence or tension in society and yet he was charged and convicted," Amer said.

Karpal, a respectable constitutional lawyer, had called for a press conference in February 2009 when the Sultan of Perak appointed Datuk Seri Zambry Abdul Kadir as menteri besar after the incumbent Datuk Seri Mohammad Nizar Jamaluddin lost majority support.

In March this year, the High Court fined him RM4,000 after finding him guilty of sedition against the Sultan.

"Karpal ran foul of the law because for sedition the best of good intentions is irrelevant," he said.

Yesterday, Mukhriz, who is also the Kedah Menteri Besar, said it was best for the Sedition Act 1948 to be retained to ensure security, solidarity and racial harmony in the country.

"So far, I have not heard of anyone giving an explanation on the act that is seen as weak, bias and not in line with the current environment... where is the weakness of this Sedition Act?" he said.

Amer said even Universiti Malaya law professor Dr Azmi Sharom was prosecuted under the law for merely applying the law to the facts of the Selangor Menteri Besar impasse.

"There must be exchange of ideas for the country and the people to move forward. Suppression of views will only retard our society," Amer said.

Lawyers for Liberty executive director Eric Paulsen (pic), taking a swipe at Mukhriz, saying the menteri besar was either feigning ignorance or being obtuse.

"Most democracies, especially in the Commonwealth, have put the law to little use or had abolished them," he said.

He said it was a myth to suggest that the law was justified because it was sensitive to speak or debate issues in order to maintain harmony and unity.

"The law has instead prevented important issues from being properly and genuinely addressed," he added.

Paulsen said there was also a perception that the Sedition Act was used as a political tool or weapon dressed up as legislation to go after opposition leaders and activists who were against the Barisan Nasional government.

Lawyer Jayaseelan Anthony said the sedition law which originated from England in the 12th century was extended to British colonies to quell dissent against the monarch and the colonial government.

"In England, the offender is guilty only if the prosecution proves there was violence and public disorder as a result of uttering or publishing seditious remarks," he said.

However, he said the British and their judicial officers modified the law to make it more oppresive to check their subjects in the colonies.

"They wanted to stay in power and this had to be done through rule by fear," said Anthony who is author of a book "Seditious Tendency?"

In the then Malaya, he said the British who returned after the Japanese Occupation passed three laws in one day - the Sedition, Trade Union and Printing Ordinances in 1948 to control the communist propoganda.

"The then Communist Party of Malaya was making inroads among the masses and workers, and the British needed the legislation to check their influence," he said.

He said the political and social landscape in Malaysia had changed for the better but yet the sedition law was made more repressive following an amendment in 1970.

"This primitive law must go if we are going to join the ranks of other progressive democratic societies," he said. – September 28, 2014.

KL Customs Chief, Seven Senior Officers Face 24 Corruption Charges

SHAH ALAM, Sept 29 (Bernama) -- Kuala Lumpur Customs Department director, Datuk Mohd Isa Endot, and seven other Customs officers were today charged in the Sessions Court, here, with 24 counts of corruption involving bribes received amounting to RM42,400.

The graft offences, allegedly committed between March, 2013 and August, 2014, were in connection with the smuggling of liquor for which duty had not been paid.

The seven other officers charged include Assistant Superintendent Muhamad Helmi Burhanudin from the Operations Branch of the Enforcement Division, Selangor Customs headquarters, Senior Asst. Supt. II Wan Azman Wan Ali from the KL Customs Department and Senior Asst. Supt. II Jamaluddin Zam Zam from the Customs Central Zone's Intelligence Branch, Putrajaya.

The others are Asst. Supt Mohamad Fauzi Kamsar, Supt Shamsul Anwar Mohd Radzi, senior Customs officer Azlee Mohamed Yusof and Senior Asst. Supt Mohamed Rozlan Ibrahim, also from the Kuala Lumpur Customs Department.

Mohd Isa, Muhamad Helmi, Wan Azman, Mohamad Fauzi, Jamaluddin and Mohamed Rozlan were separately charged while Shamsul Anwar and Azlee were jointly charged.

Mohd Isa, 55, pleaded not guilty to four charges of accepting bribes amounting to RM8,000 as monthly payment and protection money to facilitate a company's dealings with Customs.

He is alleged to have committed the offences at his office, Level 5, Block C, Wisma Kastam Kelana Jaya, between May and August, this year.

Muhamad Helmi, 37, meanwhile, pleaded not guilty to seven charges of accepting bribes on a monthly basis amounting to RM14,000 as inducement not to disturb a lorry leaving the Klang Port Free Zone. The lorry belonged to an individual with vested interest.

Muhamad Helmi allegedly committed the offences at the Operations Branch of the Enforcement Division, Selangor Customs Department between February and August, this year.

Wan Azman, 47, pleaded not guilty to five accounts of soliciting for and receiving bribes amounting to RM10,000 from an individual at the Kuala Lumpur Customs Warehousing Branch while being aware that the person had official connection with the Kuala Lumpur Customs director.

The offences were allegedly committed between May and August, 2014 in the Klang Valley.

Mohamad Fauzi, 33, also pleaded not guilty to three charges of accepting bribes amounting to RM4,200 as inducement not to interfere with liquor smuggling activities during the inspection operations, allegedly between last June and August in Kelana Jaya, Selangor.

Shamsul Anwar, 32, and Azlee, 48, jointly face two corruption charges of accepting bribes amounting to RM3,000 from an individual as inducement not to disturb that person's business.

The alleged offences, to which they pleaded not guilty, were committed between July and August, 2014 in Kelana Jaya, Selangor.

Jamaludin, 54, was charged with accepting a bribe of RM1,000 as inducement to provide information on Customs intelligence operations to an individual.

The offence was allegedly committed in March 2013 at an eatery in Subang Jaya.

Mohamed Rozlan, 57, faces two charges of accepting bribes amounting to RM2,200 as inducement not to inspect any business in which an individual had interest. The offences were committed between June 10 and 20, 2014 in Subang Jaya and Kelana Jaya.

All the charges againt the six accused were made under Section 16(a)(A) of the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) Act 2009 and Section 165 of the Penal Code.

Judge Datuk Noradidah Ahmad allowed Mohd Isa bail of RM25,000 in one surety, Muhamad Helmi RM20,000, Wan Azman RM15,000, Mohamad Fauzi RM10,000, Shamsul Anwar RM8,000, Mohamed Rozlan $8,000, Jamaludion RM5,000 and Azlee RM3,000, also in one surety each.

The accused were also ordered to surrender their passports to the court and all the cases will be rementioned on Oct 30.

Deputy public prosecutors Umar Saifuddin Jaafar and Mohd Heikal Ismail from the MACC appeared for the prosecution, while the accused were represented by lawyers Gabriel Susayan, Radehayati Johateh, Mona Hazratulaswati Fauzi, V.Kumaresan and Syed Ismat Syed Muhamad, among others.

Monday, September 29, 2014

PERKASA gerakan ahlinya pertahankan Akta Hasutan

ISIS's 'emir of suicide bombers' raised $2million for 'military operations' from mystery Qatari donor, say US officials

  • Tariq bin al-Tahar al-Harzi, 32, is 'one of ISIS's most senior commanders'
  • He raised $2million from mystery Qatari donor, according to U.S. Treasury
  • Unnamed donor told him cash must be used for 'military operations' only
  • Revelations have sparked calls for the Gulf to prevent its citizens from aiding the flow of funds to Syria-based terror groups, such as the Islamic State
  • Despite criticism, Qatar 'working together' with America against militants
  • Al-Harzi among number of jihadis named as 'global terrorists' by Treasury

The Islamic State's 'emir of suicide bombers' raised a staggering $2million for 'military operations' from a mystery Qatari donor, U.S. officials have said.

Tunisian-born Tariq bin al-Tahar al-Harzi, 32, one of the terror group's most senior commanders, allegedly arranged to receive the funds from a Gulf-based 'financial facilitator'.

The unnamed donor told him the cash must be used for 'military operations' and also enlisted the terrorist's help with 'fundraising efforts in Qatar', according to the U.S. Treasury.

The revelations have sparked calls for the Gulf state, the richest per capita in the world, to prevent its citizens from aiding the flow of funds to Syria-based terror groups, such as ISIS.

But despite increasing criticism, Qatar, which has an extensive London property portfolio including luxury department store Harrods, is now 'working together' with the U.S. against ISIS.

The Gulf has contributed two Mirage jet fighters to President Barack Obama's air campaign against militants, which are being controlled from a headquarters outside Qatar’s capital, Doha.

Al-Harzi, who is believed to be one of ISIS's first ever terrorists, is among a number of jihadists to be recently added to the Treasury's list of Specially Designated Global Terrorists.

Other named jihadists include a middleman between al-Qaeda’s leadership in Pakistan and Gulf financiers and another ISIS senior commander who is believed to oversee a prison where foreign hostages are held.

Read more:

OK Beheader’s Imam Defended Muslim Terrorism, Called for Jailing Pamela Geller

islam-imad-enchassi-oklahoma-110410jpg-7fde7c85c785983bby Daniel Greenfield

Daniel Greenfield, a Shillman Journalism Fellow at the Freedom Center, is a New York writer focusing on radical Islam. He is completing a book on the international challenges America faces in the 21st century.

Imam Imad Enchassi, a Lebanese immigrant who claims to be a Palestinian Arab, was the Imam of the Oklahoma beheader’s mosque. While he is running the usual routine about peace and love, a story relayed to Robert Spencer by a former congregant shows a different side of him.

The Imam was Imad Enchassi the last I heard. He was a friend of mine. He is a Lebanese-born Sunni who hates Israel. He once gave a sermon that the Israelis were trying to collapse al-Aqsa mosque by digging tunnels underneath it. They have no issue with Palestinian suicide bombings because, as it was explained to me, that is the only weapon the Palestinians have.

That’s not a surprise, as Imam Imad Enchassi denounced Israel on social media and claimed to have family in Gaza who were killed during conflicts with Israel. Considering that Israel targets Hamas terrorists, that certainly raises some questions.

He also appears to be an officer in the state chapter of CAIR, a front group for the Muslim Brotherhood, and has numerous photos showcasing his involvement with Islamic Relief, an organization whose international chapters have had alleged ties to Hamas.

When terrorist supporter George Galloway was beaten up, Imam Imad Enchassi urged “prayers” for him. And he’s not too fond of critics of Islam in the US.

In response to a story on Pamela Geller’s ad campaign critical of Islamic terrorism, he posted that, “Hate speech and ads that crosses freedom of speech and encouraged violence ought to be illegal.”

Walk the talk, social media users tell Najib over his UN speech

Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak had urged the United Nations to defeat violent extremism and religious intolerance. – Reuters pic, September 27, 2014.Barely hours after Datuk Seri Najib Razak condemned the Islamic State militants (Isis) and religious extremism at the United Nations General Assembly in New York, social media users were quick to remind the prime minister to practise what he preached at home.

Twitter user Nash, using the handle @nash_71, did not mince his words when he posted: "@NajibRazak such a pity your words and deeds dont (sic) match where it matters most... at HOME... Malaysia... cld hv (could have) been known a great statesman."

Lawyers for Liberty executive director Eric Paulsen also hit out at the PM's remarks at the UN assembly, by tweeting: "@NajibRazak says the right thing at UN but fails miserably back in Msia – Umno, Isma, Perkasa, Utusan, Jakim, Jais extremism for all to see."

He further posted: "At UN @NajibRazak calls for peace & moderation but no such consideration in Msia – everything is dealt with by the Sedition Act."

This prompted a response from a follower, Peoples Power, using the handle @peoplespowerr, who posted: "He is jaguh dunia BUT not jaguh kampung."

Another Twitter user, Hafiz Noor Shams, using the handle @__earth, appeared to issue a reminder to the PM's earlier presumed admiration for the terror group: "Najib at the UN: WE'RE ANTI ISIS. Najib in an UMNO pow-wow: We should emulate ISIS's courage."

Najib had in June at a dinner to commemorate the 20th anniversary of the Cheras Umno branch, called on party members to emulate the exploits of the group, which was then known as the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant (Isil), as its members were able to defeat an Iraqi force despite being outnumbered.

Many criticised him and questioned him for voicing his support for a militant group.

However, the prime minister's office later claimed that his words had been taken out of context and, instead, said that the militants' actions ran counter to the Islamic faith and culture and humanity.

Human rights lawyer Latheefa Koya also took to Twitter today to say: "Najib urges global community to defeat violent extremism & religious intolerance – hello? ada kenal Isma & perkasa? (heard of Isma and Perkasa?)", in reference to the two Muslim and Malay rights groups in Malaysia.

Former BN de facto law minister Datuk Zaid Ibrahim also tweeted using the handle @zaidibrahim: "PM snazzy dresser; spoke well about dangerous ideas permeating Islamic world in New York. When back home will he repeat them in Pekan?"

Najib had earlier told the UN General Assembly that Isis militants had destroyed lives and communities and destabilised fragile nations and threatened regional security.

“We reject this so-called Islamic State. We reject this state defined by extremism. And we condemn the violence being committed in the name of Islam.

“We know that the threat to world peace and security is not Islam, but extremism: intolerant, violent and militant extremism. The actions of these militants are beyond conscience and belief. They violate the teachings of Islam, the example set by the Prophet Muhammad, and the principles of Islamic law.”

Najib also said in his speech that there were key things that the world must do to defeat violent extremism and religious intolerance in Iraq and Syria.

“First, security and statehood must be returned to the people of Syria and Iraq.

“Secondly, we must pursue a different kind of politics... We must break the cycle where one group gains power only to wield it against the other... So we should commit to more inclusive politics."

- See more at:

Malaysians flay sex blogger Alvin Tan for fleeing to US

Alvin Tan (red t-shirt) being led to court following his arres following his alleged offensive post online last year. - The Malaysian Insider pic, September 28, 2014.Sex blogger Alvin Tan’s decision to seek asylum in the United States has drawn flak from Malaysian social media users, many of whom believe he should face up to his actions rather than flee the country.

Tan and his former partner, Vivian Lee, had been charged under the Sedition Act for uploading a bak kut teh posting during Ramadan last year, but he violated his bail conditions while on a supposed working trip to Singapore.

Tan, 26, had insisted in a recent interview with The Malaysian Insider that leaving Malaysia was “the only rational action” as he was powerless to fight “tyranny and ignorance”.

However, most Facebook users felt otherwise, noting that Tan should have been brave enough to face the consequences of the law after knowingly breaking it.

“The reason he 'tak suka Malaysia' is because he’s being prosecuted for a crime under Malaysian law. In my opinion, he deserves to be punished for his puerile acts in the past,” wrote Facebook user Josh Wu.

“He openly admitted to deceiving the courts by fleeing to the United States after Malaysian courts were kind enough to allow him to go to Singapore for some film-shooting.

“The law shouldn’t protect those who misuse the law. He who seeks equity must do equity.”

Another Facebook user, Eugene Leong, said Tan had started the entire episode with his Ramadan wishes, which he said were uncalled for.

“That was indeed a silly and stupid thing to do. Yes, he was punished by the courts. Yes, he fled Malaysia via some excuses.

“But, what I would really like to know is how he feels now, knowing that he got his mum to lose the bond money of 20k when he ran away, instead of defending himself in court!” wrote Leong.

In his interview with The Malaysian Insider, Tan had defended the post, which carried a photo of a pork dish, as political satire.

He said it had highlighted the danger of using Islam “as a basis to govern other people’s life” by legislating personal morals, without making a distinction between what is immoral and what is illegal.

Tan added that he did not believe he was a coward by seeking refuge in the US, but that he was “smart, pragmatic, calculative and mercenary”.

“When the government and its institutions decide to ruin your life and jail you for years just because you hurt their feelings, you do not sit back and try to fight the overwhelming wave of emotional, irrational force coming down on you,” he had said.

But most Facebook users dismissed this, saying his actions were cowardly and idiotic.

“I think he is humiliating himself becoz of his ego! Nothing so smart, also more like childish!” wrote Vivian V. Kulasingham.

“It’s either he is a coward or he is an idiot!!!” wrote Augustin Anthony.

They also warned Tan that he would be extradited back to Malaysia and still have to face the courts.

“Don’t be confident. Soon he will realise that he will be extradited back to Malaysia. But I really pity the girl because he left her,” wrote Mohd Shafian Noordin, referring to Lee.

Anastasia Pertiwi said Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak was well known for “covert negotiations” and a single phone call to US President Barack Obama would have Tan on the first flight back to Malaysia.

“How long can he stay there? Unless he possess the green card, else it will be deported back. Know yourself first before the enemy,” wrote Chai KL.

However, a handful of Facebook users defended Tan, with one even hailing him a “hero”.

“He is battling the political system not race and religion. Don’t be confused,” wrote Brian Low.

Clement Leong Ern said that while he did not condone Tan’s past actions, the sex blogger was “speaking sense” now.

“Bravo Alvin Tan!” wrote Rosa Rosa.

Tan and Lee are facing criminal charges under Malaysia's Sedition Act as well as the Film Censorship Act for their controversial online uploads, including a photo deemed insulting to Islam on Facebook.

They were both allowed a total bail of RM30,000 each, with two sureties, by the High Court in Kuala Lumpur in July last year. – September 28, 2014.

Avoid no-confidence vote for Azmin, says Dr M

Former premier Dr Mahathir Mohamad threw his full backing behind Azmin Ali as the new Selangor menteri besar, expressing his wish that the majority in the Selangor state assembly support Azmin, and avoid any vote of no-confidence.

Speaking to reporters briefly after unveiling a new Proton car, the Iriz Active at the Proton's Centre of Excellence in Shah Alam today, Mahathir said that a vote of no-confidence should be avoided.

"I hope when the state assembly sits, the majority will support Azmin (right).

"If they don't, there will be a vote of no-confidence and then Selangor will have to find a new MB," he said.

There had been murmurs that Azmin, despite being appointed by Selangor Sultan Sharafuddin Idris Shah although not initially nominated by his party PKR, could face a no-confidence vote when the state assembly convenes in November.

Meanwhile, Mahathir also refused to read too much into Azmin's decision to reduce PAS' exco allocation from four exco posts to three.

"That is the MB's right, whether he want to increase or decrease. He can do what he feels is appropriate. It is not necessary for him to keep four excos just because the previous administration did so," he said.

On a separate note, Mahathir said that he had not read Prime Minister Najib Abdul Razak's speech at the United Nations general assembly recently, but did agree with the premier that the Islamic State (IS) militants must be rejected.

"About IS, I agree. There is no doubt we are against IS. We have to get rid of them, they are un-Islamic," he said.

Selangor PAS duo gets heroes' welcome by DAP

Branded traitors by PAS, Selangor assemblypersons Saari Sungib and Hasnul Baharuddin who defied their party to stand with Pakatan Rakyat in the Selangor crisis received a heroes' welcome from Chinese supporters at a DAP fundraising dinner last night.

The duo, who were seated beside DAP supremo Lim Kit Siang, received a standing ovation from the largely Chinese audience as several DAP leaders described them as "saviours of Pakatan Rakyat".

"Thank you Saari and Hasnul (far right and left respectively in photo), that we still have a Pakatan government. You are not traitors, you are the rakyat's heroes," declared former Selangor exco Ronnie Liu at the 70-table dinner in Petaling Jaya last night.

Meanwhile, Bukit Gasing state assemblyperson R Rajiv said the duo's move to sign statutory declarations with other PKR and DAP representatives in backing PKR president Wan Azizah Wan Ismail as the menteri besar "shattered" any hopes of a PAS-Umno unity government.

"If not for the two of them, we would have seen a unity government between PAS and Umno. But because of their willingness to sacrifice, we have preserved Pakatan in Selangor under our new menteri besar Azmi Ali," he said.

Damansara Utama state assemblyperson Yeo Bee Yin too praised them for their courage, relating what Saari's wife had told her as Saari prepared to declare that he would stand with Pakatan.

"She told me the pressure was like when Saari was about to be detained under the Internal Security Act (ISA), but the pressure did not stop them from making this decision," she said.

Lim, who later took the stage likewise heaped praise on the duo before inviting them onto the stage to address the excited audience while he continued to stand beside them as they spoke.

A smiling Saari began his speech by asking, "DAP okay? PKR okay?"

To which he received a loud "okay" from the crowd before asking in a hushed voice, "PAS okay?" to which he also received an equally loud, "Okay".

Saari then related how he had struggled with fellow DAP leaders since the reformasi era, praising their consistency in fighting for democracy.

However, he lamented that the struggle for democracy sometimes faltered among his own party comrades.

'Shed tears over bid with Umno'

"This was proven in 2008 in Selangor when DAP won 13 seats, PKR won 15 seats, PAS won 8 seats and BN won 20 seats.

"DAP and PKR were already holding meetings to plan (the new government), but I lost my own (then colleague) PAS commissioner Hasan Ali.

"We kept trying to find him but we could not. It turned out he was negotiating with Umno (to form the government)," he said as the crowd broke into laughter.

Saari said he was deeply disappointed at that time and had "shed tears" that his leaders thought that he, who had struggled since the reformasi era and detained under the ISA twice, would be willing to ally with arch-enemy Umno.

He added had PAS allied with Umno then, he would have quit the party to become an Independent, to which some in the crowd shouted, "Join DAP." But Saari merely smiled.

Likewise, Saari said in the latest saga he and colleague Hasnul had stood with Pakatan without hesitation.

"Our decision was simple and straightforward, the muktamar had decided that we should stand with Pakatan. But unfortunately 13 of our other colleagues were not prepared to do so.

"Outsiders call us saviours, that it our contribution to save Pakatan in Selangor. But in our own party we are labelled as traitors.

"Are we traitors?" he said as the audience shouted back, "No, heroes!"

As a result of his decision, Saari said he received the highest 'honour' from his party that he described as Double B and Double D - Broker, Barua (lackey), Dicuri (stolen), Dibeli (bought over) - in reference to what PAS president Abdul Hadi Awang labelled the duo during the muktamar.

Saari however stressed he has received no reward for standing with Pakatan and had asked the new menteri besar not to include his name in the shortlist for any exco positions when the government was being formed.

'Like child breaking law'

Meanwhile, Hasnul admitted that he was under tremendous pressure when he decided to side with Pakatan during the MB saga.

"My colleague (Damansara Utama state assemblyperson) Yeo Bee Yin said I looked scared when I entered the room (to declare support for Pakatan), like I had done something wrong to break the law, like how a child breaks the law.

"That was how scared (I felt), but I felt it was a sacrifice I had to do," he said, adding that he hopes the Pakatan coalition will persevere.

Hasnul admitted that his actions means that he is unlikely to be allowed by PAS to contest in the next general election, but joked he could still contest under DAP.

"It's dangerous for me to say like this," he said laughingly. "No, what I meant is I do not care about my position."

"But many of my friends in PAS thought if they did the same (to support Wan Azizah), they would not be nominated to contest in the next election," he said.

Both PAS state assemblypersons when approached by journalists later stressed they will not quit PAS, and will leave their fate up to the party's disciplinary committee.

Saari and Hasnul during the Selangor crisis acted as tie breakers after the duo joined 28 PKR and DAP state assemblypersons to back Wan Azizah.

PAS, which refused to make a decision at the time to back Wan Azizah as MB, had caused a stalemate as the 28 PKR and DAP representatives only made exactly half of the 56-member state assembly.

The crisis was triggered when Selangor menteri besar Abdul Khalid Ibrahim refused to step down from his position, after the party decided to replace him over increasing difficulty in working with him.

Anwar pertahan tindakan DAP pecat Bendahari PAS dari MPPP

(Suara TV) – PKR tidak akan mempertahankan bendahari PAS Pulau Pinang Iszuree Ibrahim yang digantung dari sebagai menyertai sebarang jawatankuasa kerja Majlis Perbandaran Pulau Pinang (MPPP) kerana mengkritik polisi setinggan kerajaan negeri.

Iszuree yang juga ketua lajnah tanah PAS negeri bagaimanapun dikekalkan sebagai ahli majlis tetapi peruntukkan beliau dibekukan.

Ketua Umum PKR Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim berkata Iszuree sepatutnya menggunakan saluran yang betul untuk meluahkan ketidakpuasan hatinya kerana beliau sebahagian Pakatan Rakyat.

“Kamu boleh kritik dari fakta yang kamu dapati, bukan dari apa yang didapati dari Umno.

“Jika kamu nak guna peruntukan negeri tetapi terus kritik – kamu tidak dapat memberi perkhidmatan dengan baik,” kata beliau ketika ditanya wartawan selepas ceramah anti akta hasutan di Seberang Jaya semalam.

Ketika ditanya adakah tindakan negeri terlalu keras dan seoalah-olah tidak dapat menerimanya sebagai kritikan, Anwar menjawab:

“Sudah tentulah boleh kritik. Tetapi keadaan di sini mungkin berbeza,” tambah beliau.

Go ahead, investigate me

Khalid says he welcomes any party including the MACC to review and investigate all contracts he signed while MB of Selangor.

PETALING JAYA: Khalid Ibrahim said the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) was more than welcome to investigate any agreement he signed during his tenure as Selangor Menteri Besar.

Among those he said MACC could have a go at, were the Selangor water restructuring deal and the Canal City development agreement.

“I welcome all parties, including the MACC to review and investigate all the agreements signed when I was Menteri Besar of Selangor.

“My lawyer will prepare a full statement on this matter,“ Khalid posted on his Facebook page.

This retort from Khalid came in the heels of a new directive from PKR de facto leader Anwar Ibrahim who has instructed Menteri Besar Azmin Ali to expose every company and individual who benefitted from the water deal signed by Khalid while he was Menteri Besar.

Anwar said, “I do not care if people are profiting from it. I do care that it is the people of Selangor who are having to pay for it.”

He added that someone had to answer to the people for having to bear the burden of others earning billions from dubious deals that could very likely raise water tariffs.

Anwar also accused Khalid of not following procedure as the contracts did not go through a proper tender exercise. He lamented over the lack of transparency and expressed his unhappiness that many of these contracts were signed in a hurry by Khalid just before leaving office.

Hindus upset at Barbie depicted as goddess Kali

Rajan Zed says faith is something sacred and attempts at belittling it hurt devotees.

Hindus are upset with an upcoming art show opening in Buenos Aires (Argentina) on October 11 depicting the iconic Barbie doll as their goddess Kali, calling it highly inappropriate.

Titled “Barbie, The Plastic Religion”, this exhibition plans to include 33 dolls of various religious figures produced by two Argentinian artists Marianela Perelli and Pool Paolini.

Hindu statesman Rajan Zed, in a statement in Nevada (USA) today, urged the artists to not include Barbie-ised Goddess Kali in the exhibition and remove it from their online postings and printed material as it trivialised the highly revered deity of Hinduism.

Zed, who is President of the Universal Society of Hinduism, stressed that reimagining Hindu scriptures and deities for commercial or other agenda was not okay as it hurt the devotees. Goddess Kali and other Hindu deities were meant to be worshipped in temples and home shrines and not meant to be reduced to a Barbie character.

Zed pointed out that Hindus were for free speech as much as anybody else if not more. But faith was something sacred and attempts at belittling it hurt the devotees. Artists should be more sensitive while handling faith related subjects, Zed added.

Zed further said that Hindus welcomed art world to immerse in Hinduism but taking it seriously and respectfully and not for refashioning Hinduism concepts and symbols for personal agendas. Barbie-fication of Kali was simply improper, wrong and out of place.

Hinduism was the oldest and third largest religion of the world with about one billion adherents and a rich philosophical thought and it should not be taken lightly. No faith, larger or smaller, should be plundered, Zed noted.

Goddess Kali, who personifies Shakti or divine energy and considered the goddess of time and change, is widely worshipped in Hinduism. Moksh (liberation) is the ultimate goal of Hinduism.

Besides goddess Kali, this art show also reportedly includes figures from Christianity, Judaism, Buddhism and Argentinian folk religion. Barbie as goddess Kali on Facebook page shows it in a box with the symbol of Om and “Jai Kali Ma” in Hindi printed on it.

This article appeared on Eurasia Review and was sent to FMT by Rajan Zed.

Malaysia To Host Economic Roundtable In Vienna

Datuk Selwyn Das
From Caroline Jackson

VIENNA, Sept 28 (Bernama) -- Malaysia will host an economic roundtable here on October 9 to promote the country's investment and trade opportunities, says Malaysian Ambassador to Austria Datuk Selwyn Das.

Selwyn, who is also the Permanent Representative to the United Nations (UN) in Vienna, said Malaysia and Austria not only enjoyed excellent diplomatic ties but the country was also considered a good investment destination.

He said the event would be jointly organised by the Malaysia External Trade Development Corporation office in Frankfurt and the Malaysian embassy here.

"Since our embassy was established in 1962, we have enjoyed very good relations with Austria and this was evident by Austrian President Heinz Fischer's visit to Malaysia in 2010.

"When I presented my credentials to him last October, he still remembered Malaysia very fondly," he told Bernama.

Given that Vienna was one of the UN's four headquarters cities, including the base for international organisations such as the UN Office on Drugs and Crime and International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), he said both countries have collaborated on many international issues.

"We follow and monitor issues closely and protect our national interests, for example the resolutions passed at the just-concluded IAEA scientific forum here that can benefit us," he said, adding that the country's focus at present was on trade, tourism and education.

In terms of bilateral trade, Selwyn said last year Malaysia recorded a 4.6 per cent increase in trade with Austria valued at RM1,553.3 million.

Malaysian exports to Austria comprised electric and electronic products, optical and scientific equipment, machinery, metal products, appliances and parts, chemical and chemical products.

Austria imported electrical and electronic products, machinery, appliance and parts, chemical and chemical products, paper and pulp products and scientific equipment from Malaysia, he said.

He said there were many Austrian companies operating in Malaysia such as Vamed, which built the National Heart Institute in Kuala Lumpur and other private hospitals, and they were also active in the high-technology and construction industries.

The Malaysian embassy here is also promoting linkages with Austrian and Malaysian universities besides looking at the possibility of collaboration in healthcare and exchange of expertise to improve health care services in Malaysia, he said.

"As for tourism, more Austrians are interested in Asian culture and we received good response from them during our National Day celebration on Sept 9.

"We served Malaysian cuisine like "rendang" and "satay," he said, adding that about 13,000 Austrians visited Malaysia annually.

At present, about 300 Malaysians are residing in Austria, including 100 who are working mostly with international corporations.

Selwyn said Austria had also expressed its support for Malaysia, which was in a good position to secure a non-permanent seat in the UN Security Council for the 2015-2016 term.

A lot of strange things have been going on, must be a sign of the end of an era

THERE is a belief among some people that one of the signs of the end of times is when really strange things start to happen. I was never one of those because often “strange” can be quite subjective. There are some who think women taking leadership positions is one of those strange events.

But of late I have had to revise my view of this, although it may not coincide with the same theories that those people have. It is true, however, that a lot of strange things have been going on that, to me, must surely be a sign of the end of something. Maybe it’s not quite the end of the world, but certainly the end of an era, at least for some people.

For instance, we are now seeing this bizarre phenomenon of the nation’s top cop deciding that if anyone has the temerity to be “biadap” (rude) about his law enforcement agency or even himself, then he’ll use the Sedition Act against us.

Now, I don’t recall that the Act actually says we can’t pass a snide remark or two about the agency. After all we are all familiar with that remark “itu biasa lah” whenever we’ve had the misfortune to have to report a bag-snatching or a petty theft.

Would saying that such a remark is not be­coming of law enforcement officers be consi­dered “biadap”? Would saying that our top cop’s performance in front of the world media during the MH370 press conferences was far short of impressive make us liable to be arrested? If yes, then there are lots of people who would be in handcuffs by now.

Today you can get done in for giving an expert opinion that some governance processes were not legally kosher, or for saying that elections are the time for us to change governments if we wanted. Isn’t that what elections are for?

Undoubtedly some people have been foolish enough to let loose on social media things they would only say privately to friends. But that’s a very Gen Y thing to do, say everything you feel and put it up for all to see. It doesn’t necessarily mean you mean it, nor that you even had much reason to say it. But those get hauled up, too. Will this actually stop more ill-considered opi­nions being aired? I doubt it.

Yet these are the sorts of strange things that one can get charged for these days. Even stranger is the penchant for the same said officer to refuse to obey the laws under which he should operate. In all our 57 years of nationhood, there has never been confusion among our law enforcement officers as to what laws they are supposed to obey.

Suddenly, these days they are easily confused. And when compelled by the courts to do their job, they find the country’s top legal man, whose job is to protect the Federal Constitution, to become their lawyer.

That’s a lot of firepower to fight one poor beleaguered mother who just wants to have her children with her. They must think she’s darn powerful to warrant this type of abuse of the courts.

I even think that the UPSR leaks, as well as the response to it, are also a sign of the end. For one thing, why so much panic over an exam that 12-year-olds sit for? And secondly, although the leakers should be punished, why bother making all 473,175 pupils re-sit it?

Leak or not, the smart ones are still going to get good results. So we might as well wait for the results of the entire exam and see if there are any real anomalies such as those who normally don’t do well suddenly getting all As. Frankly, I doubt it.

So these strange events, as well as some others, are a sign that an era is coming to an end. Perhaps it is the end of doing things the same old way when things are changing rapidly every day. It is the end of a time when people all think and see things the same way. Nor is it any longer a time when people will not voice what they don’t like.

Einstein said that the surest sign of insanity is doing the same things repeatedly while expecting a different result. In our case, we are seeing the same things done more incompetently while expecting love and respect in return.

I’m not sure what to call that.

By Marina Mahathir – The Star

Saturday, September 27, 2014

Sultan: Beta adalah lebih daripada sebagai lambang

Oklahoma: Muslim BEHEADS Female Co-Worker At Food-Processing Plant, Starts to Behead Another Before being Shot, Tried to Convert Co-Workers to Islam

The Islamic ritual slaughter of beheading  has moved past Iraq, Syria, Algeria, Philippines and into the streets of London and now the American workplace.

Qur’an 47:4: “When you meet the unbelievers, strike the necks…”

Former co-workers said he tried to convert them to Islam after recently converting himself. The New York Daily News does not mention that salient fact in its coverage here but they will run vicious attacks on our jihad-awareness ads.
Oklahoma Department of Corrections records show the suspect, whom The Associated Press is not naming because he has not been charged, has multiple religious tattoos, including one in Arabic that means “peace be with you.
Read more at:

Mujahid: Fight against all forms of extremisms

Broker, barua PAS: Saari tak tolak mahu ke mahkamah

'Honor killing': Galilee Arab girl, 14, murdered for leaving house without chaperone

'Family honor' killing in RamleBy Eli Ashkenazi

Fatma Hayb was shot eight times; brother and three cousins indicted.

Four men, including the victim’s brother, were indicted Thursday for murdering 14-year-old Fatma Hayb, allegedly because she had angered them by leaving her house without a chaperone.

Along with the brother, Mustafa Hayb, 24, the defendants are her cousins Majed Hayb, 20; Issa Hayb, 20; and Bashar Hayb, 19. All are residents of the village of Tuba Zangaria in the Upper Galilee.

Fatma was murdered on the night of June 12. According to the indictment filed in the Nazareth District Court, Mustafa and Majed had both threatened to hurt or even kill her several times before, saying she was leaving the house without their permission and wandering around without a chaperone. At some point, they decided to carry out their threat and enlisted Bashar and Issa to help.

At 10:20 P.M. on June 12, the indictment stated, Bashar and Issa came to Fatma’s house with a 9mm pistol by prearrangement with Mustafa and Majed. Fatma was sitting outside in the courtyard. Bashar and Issa shot her at least eight times, hitting her in both the upper and lower body, then fled the scene. Fatma was severely wounded and died soon after arriving at the hospital.

Mustafa is also charged with trying to harm another of his sisters just 11 days before Fatma’s murder. That sister, who is 20, enraged him by staying out one night until 9:30 P.M., the indictment said. When she returned, he grabbed her by the hair, but she managed to escape. He then chased after her with a knife.

All four men are charged with murder, conspiracy to commit a crime and weapons offenses. Mustafa and Majed are also charged with menacing. The prosecution asked that all four be remanded until the end of the trial.

Attorney Said Haddad, the public defender who is representing Mustafa Hayb, said his client denies “that he had any connection to the murder or desired his sister’s death.”

Mustafa did know there was a plan afoot to injure his sister, as a warning to her to mend her behavior, but nothing beyond that, Haddad added.

Moreover, any cooperation between Mustafa and the murderers stemmed from concrete threats that failure to cooperate would lead to him and other members of his family being killed, Haddad said. These threats precluded any possibility of complaining to the police or otherwise acting to prevent the attack on his sister, since “any attempt to change things would have brought his life to an end.”

15 beheaded in Taliban offensive in Afghanistan, official says

Kabul, Afghanistan (CNN) -- A Taliban offensive in eastern Afghanistan left an estimated 100 civilians dead or wounded in the past week, including some women and children who were beheaded, a provincial deputy governor said Friday.

Hundreds of Taliban insurgents stormed Ghazni province's Ajristan district last week, sparking intense, ongoing battles with Afghan security forces, said Mohammad Ali Ahmadi, Ghazni's deputy governor. The Taliban have taken over a large number of villages in the area, he added.

The insurgents beheaded at least 15 people, including women and children, on Thursday, Ahmadi said.

The exact number of people killed in the last week isn't known, in part because authorities don't have an adequate communications system that could help tally the figures, Ahmadi said.

"We only have local police forces and a small number of Afghan National Army personnel fighting a huge number of well-armed Taliban in the area," he said, adding that the country's government in Kabul promised Friday that air support would be sent to the region.

Misogyny: Man kills wife for giving birth to daughter

KHANEWAL: A man killed his wife and injured his daughter in Chak 88/10-R in the suburbs of Khanewal, police said on Thursday.

A police spokesman said Imran Baloch, a labourer, was unhappy at the birth of his second daughter, 35 days ago.

He said Baloch often quarrelled with Hameeda Bibi, his wife, after the child was born. He said on Thursday, he again quarrelled with her and slit her throat. The spokesman said he also attacked his two-year-old daughter. The woman died on the spot and the child was rushed to DHQ hospital in a serious condition.

The child was later referred to Nishtar Medical Hospital in Multan. The police said Baloch fled from the scene after attacking his wife and daughter.

Khanewal city police have sent the body of the woman to hospital for post mortem and started investigation.

Published in The Express Tribune, September 26th, 2014.

In zoning poser, a call to fight for Penang’s 200-year-old Siamese village

A resident of Kampung Siam walks under a banner protesting against the proposal to develop the  area. – The Malysian Insider pic by Hasnoor Hussain, September 26, 2014.A Penang legislator has questioned a move under the previous state government to change the zoning for a 200-year-old Siamese village land, which was protected by trust, for commercial development.

Yap Soo Huey, the DAP assemblywoman for Pulau Tikus, today said the land-use of the area, where Kampung Siam was located, showed that it was classified as “cultural and religious” in the 1970s.

But, the Penang Island Municipal Council’s (MPPP) Planning and Development Control Policy that was published in 1996 indicated that it had been zoned as “commercial”.

She said the land had been granted to the Siamese and Burmese communities by the East India Company on behalf of Queen Victoria in 1845. The grant stated that the land is to be used for the benefit of their descendants.

“Why was it re-zoned despite the grant given by the East India Company?”

She said developer, Five Star Heritage Sdn Bhd, submitted an application to the MPPP on April 17 to build a hotel on the 2,681 sqm site.

The land today houses residents and businessmen who are descendants of the Siamese in Penang, she said. Many still speak the Siamese language with a Malaysian dialect.

Yap (pic, left) said the MPPP and Penang government have not given any approval for the project.

“They need to investigate,” she said. “The residents also wish to pursue whether the re-zoning was valid considering the grant given by Queen Victoria.”

The developer, through its lawyer, also sent a notice to quit and deliver vacant possessions to the occupants in April. A writ of summons with a statement of claim was issued this month.

Yap urged residents and the public to lend their support to the unique heritage of the place.

A candlelight vigil will be held at 8pm tomorrow at Kampung Siam, which is located behind the Pulau Tikus police station along Burma Road, for the public to join residents in supporting the village and its community, she said. – September 26, 2014.

- See more at:

PAS rep calls for ‘all-out war’ against extremism, racism

Parit Buntar MP Dr Mujahid Yusof Rawa is urging Malaysians to oppose racism and religious extremism, which has become a worrisome trend in the country. – The Malaysian Insider pic, September 26, 2014.The rising racism and religious extremism in the country must be opposed by all Malaysians or else it will destroy the nation, a PAS lawmaker told an international law conference today.

Parit Buntar MP Dr Mujahid Yusof Rawa said this trend was a cause for concern and Malaysians, irrespective of their race and religion, must tackle the issue at its source.

"It does not matter whether the extremist is a Muslim, Christian, Hindu, or Malay, Chinese or Indian. We must wage an all-out war," he said in the talk titled "National Unity and Harmony: Promoting Respect and Strength in Diversity".

Mujahid, who is also a PAS central committee member, was speaking at the International Malaysia Law Conference in Kuala Lumpur organised by the Malaysian Bar.

He said political parties from both sides of the divide must learn to be inclusive, or become history if they refused to adapt to changes.

"They will become irrelevant or worse, a dinosaur. Umno will be referred to as a species by future generations. But I will stop here," said Mujahid as he moved on to his next point.

Mujahid, who is also a member of the National Unity Council, said politicians should aspire to be statesmen to take the country and the people forward.

"Don't think about the next general election, but about the next generation."

He said everyone must care for each other, and transcend race and religion to offer help.

"For example, the Malays must help the Chinese, and the Muslims aid the Christians, and vice versa. Remember, we are one, single human race."

He said there was no such thing as a superior race who lords over others, adding that such an attitude would not promote unity and harmony.

Mujahid conceded that there were a lot of misconceptions about his faith, but said history had proven that Islam could co-exist with races and religions.

"Nothing is wrong with the religion, but the people. In Malaysia, we have to be practical to tackle diversity of race and religion."

He believed dialogue could help people better understand each other, and called on the media to proactively promote unity, instead of sensationalising events to sell their stories.

"The media must be free and responsible, and give space to accommodate the views of different parties."

Lembah Pantai MP Nurul Izzah Anwar said the Sedition Act must be repealed as promised by Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak in July 2012.

"It is definitely against free speech and democracy," she said, adding that the law was not legislated by the Malaysian parliament.

She said Malayans enjoyed more freedom between 1945 and 1957, when they were allowed to assemble and express their views.

“Public rallies were held to reject the formation of Malayan Union in 1946,” she added, and questioned if legislation was needed to manage race relations in Malaysia.

Universiti Teknologi Malaysia law professor Dr Shad Saleem Faruqi said the Federal Constitution provided adequate safeguards to protect the rights of Malays and non-Malays.

"However, over the years, the signs of a divided and fragmented society have caught up with us."

He said the nation must revert to the spirit of the 1957 and 1963 constitutions, when the Federation of Malaya attained independence, and Malaysia was formed together with Sabah and Sarawak.

"There can be no hopeless state. Only people are hopeless about them."

Saleem also said the entire education system needed a revamp and constitutional literacy had to be improved.

– September 26, 2014.
- See more at: