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Sunday, January 24, 2010

One year on, Kugan's mom still in anguish - Malaysiakini

It is often said that time heals all wounds, but not so for the family of A Kugan,who died under mysterious circumstances while in police custody a year ago.

kugan prayer family 230110 indra nalla thambiHis mother, N Indra, 41, broke down when met on Tuesday night at their family home in Bukit Kinrara, Selangor, during a prayer ceremony to mark the first anniversary of his death.

"I do not have the heart to carry out the prayers ceremony... I'm in agony over his death and the way they took his life... There is no meaning to it," said Indra, in between her sobs.

She said she tries to console herself that Kugan (left) is still alive and working out of town, to help her get through each day.

As Kugan disappeared during the Hindu ponggal festival last year, every time she heard the 'happy ponggal' greeting last week, Indra said, she broke down as memories of her deceased son flooded back.

On Jan 20 last year, Kugan, 22, was pronounced dead after he went missing for five days.

While he was missing, his family searched numerous police stations to no avail after receiving an anonymous tipoff.

kugan ananthan 230109On learning later that their Kugan (left) was dead, his family tried to claim his body at the morgue, only to be overcome with shock upon finding laceration marks and bruises all over his body.


Despite glaring the evidence, Selangor police chief Khalid Abu Bakar claimed that autopsy results showed Kugan had died of "liquid in his lungs".

Mother yearns for justice

This was debunked when an independent second autopsy was performed and found that he had in fact died of kidney failure from severe beating.

Ten months later, after widespread public outcry, the Attorney-General's Chambers eventually charged constable V Navindran on two counts of causing "grievous hurt" while trying to extract a confession or information.

The relatively mild charge shocked many because Attorney-General Abdul Gani Patail had initially classified the case as murder and initially 11 police personnel were said to have been involved.

Unsurprisingly, Indra told Malaysiakini that she was unhappy with the outcome of police investigations.

"All 11 must be punished. They must face the death sentence for committing murder, so what happened to my son will not happen to others," she said.

kugan prayer family 230110 familyOther than the family, the prayer ceremony at her home was attended by a small delegation of Hindu Rights Action Force (Hindraf) activist and Human Rights Party (HRP) leader P Uthayakumar.

Indra's lawyer N Surendran lamented that despite the tragedy which befell Kugan's family, the police not only failed to prosecute swiftly, but also appear to have deliberately complicated matters for them.

"Instead of helping a grieving family, they made it difficult every step of the way, to the extent of refusing to surrender tissue samples (of the deceased). This is why the mother is still weeping today," he said.

AG's 'token charge'

Uthayakumar described the causing "grievous hurt" charge against the constable as a "token charge" by the attorney-general when it should have been murder or attempted murder by more individuals.

He justified this by citing the aftermath of the November 2007 Hindraf rally, where more than 40 individuals were charged for attempted murder of a police personnel.

Unlike Kugan's heavily damaged body, the police personnel involved received a mere five stitches to his head, allegedly after iron rods and bricks were hurled at him.

The extent of the police personnel's injuries were confirmed by Abdul Gani in an interview in December 2007.

Christian-Muslim violence in Nigeria warrants probe, rights group says

Workers on Saturday close mass graves where dozens of people killed during religious clashes were buried.
Workers on Saturday close mass graves where dozens of people killed during religious clashes were buried.

Lagos, Nigeria (CNN) -- Reports of at least 150 Muslims killed in recent religious clashes in Nigeria should be investigated, a human rights group urged Saturday.

Witnesses told Human Rights Watch that armed men attacked Kuru Karama in central Nigeria on Tuesday, "killing many as they tried to flee and burning many others alive," the international organization said Saturday.

The assailants targeted Muslims, reportedly killing at least 150, Human Rights Watch said.

Community leaders from Jos, a city about 19 miles north of Kuru Karama, and journalists told the organization that later in the week they saw dozens of bodies lodged in wells or sewage pits. The bodies of 121 people, including 22 children, had been recovered, the organization said. Most of the homes in the town were burned down, along with three mosques, the group said.

Those interviewed by the group said they thought the attackers were Christian, Human Rights Watch said. But even Christians were not spared. When a Christian pastor tried to stop the attacks he was beaten, a Muslim imam told the group.

Human Rights Watch called on Vice President Goodluck Jonathan to open a criminal investigation into the deaths based on the reports the groups said were credible.

Officials are still tallying death figures in the latest round of violence, said H.A. Angulu, director of public communications for the Ministry of Information and Communications.

Nigerians flee the city of Kuru Karama on Thursday after religious violence reportedly killed 150 Muslims.
Nigerians flee the city of Kuru Karama on Thursday after religious violence reportedly killed 150 Muslims.

"Yes [the clashes] occurred, but I cannot confirm any numbers," he told CNN. "At this time the government is still compiling figures of those people affected and of those displaced in Jos. They are accounting for the deceased and missing. At this time I cannot confirm the number of dead."

Earlier this week, dozens were reportedly killed in clashes in Jos. Angulu did not specifically address the reports about Kuru Karama.

On Thursday, Jonathan declared in a televised address that the attackers in the state of Plateau would be held accountable, according to Human Rights Watch.

Police were called to end the attacks, but they did not, the group reported witnesses as saying.

Hundreds have died in clashes between Christians and Muslims in central Plateau state in the past decade.

The most populous country in Africa, with a population of more than 150 million, Nigeria is almost evenly divided between Muslims and Christians.

With more than 78 million Muslims, it has the sixth largest Islamic population in the world, according to a study last year by the Pew Forum on Religion and Public Life.

A curfew was imposed Tuesday -- the same day as the reported attack in Kuru Karama -- in Jos after violence flared up there following unrest on Sunday. A local activist said 69 people had been killed and about 600 injured in the most recent outbreak. Thousands more were displaced, seeking shelter in military and police headquarters, said Sani Shehu of the Civil Rights Congress in Jos.

There was no independent confirmation of Shehu's figures.

It is unclear what sparked the latest violence.

In November 2008, at least 700 Nigerians died in Christian-Muslim riots that followed a disputed local election, Human Rights Watch reported.

PKR Selangor : No equal business opportunities for Indians ( refer Sinaran 23/01/10 at page s 13 )

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S.Radha , a poor yoga teacher has to beg for business opportunities form a PKR Selayang

Municipal councilor . S . Radha was merely given ( a verbal ) support for her to get a stall from the Majlis Perbandaran Selayang ( MPS ) to do business but the pro PKR Sinar newspaper misrepresents and publishes “ Hidup guru yoga kini berubah “

Nothing may happened to S.Radha after this but the PKR propaganda has been done.

Even if Radha gets the stall, thousand of others Indians are denied business opportunities . But UMNO and PKR will tell us that the Indians are not interested in doing business . But just see for your self the thousands of small shops put up for Thaipusam at Batu Caves and nationwide . After Thaipusam ,these Indians will be denied licenses permit to do business etc by UMNO and PKR .

P.Uthayakumar.

The Kampung Laksamana Mariamman hindu temple Batu Caves is to be demolished in two weeks ( Malaysia Nanban 23 /01/10 page 10 )


Under the 50 years old UMNO regime rule one hindu temple was demolished in every ten days this PKR Selangor state govermoent is refusing to grant land to all hindu temples and gazette the same accordingly . The PKR Menteri Besar of Selangor can just acquire the land to this Kampung Laksamana hindu temple and all hidu temples in Selangor , give the land titles to these hindu temples and gazette them accordingly. But the PKR,DAP,PAS state governments in Selangir Kedah, Penang (and earlier Perak ) will

never do it.

How than are these PKR ,DAP and PAS any different from the UMNO regime ?

P.Uthayakumar

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UMNO : RM 48 million welfare help in 2010 Budget but Muniandy leg amputated gets zero ( Sinar 23 / 01 / 10 at page S24 )



This is just the tip of the iceberg. Hundreds of Indians in Muniandy”s position are denied welfare help frpm UMNO simply because they are Indians .

One Maly –sia ?



UMNO : Cruel religious separation of mother Indira and her 20 month old daughter. ( The Star 23 / 01 / 10 at page N3)

Article 11 of the Federal Constitution guarantiees freedom of religion but UMNO their Islamic affairs department and the UMNO High courts separates a hindu mother from her 20 month old daughter . The mother cried when she was briefly reunited with her daughter at the High Court in Ipoh . This Hindu mother in all likehood is not going to get Justice in UMNO Courts

This cannot be the law anywhere in the world. These does not happen in any other part of the world except in Prime Minister Najib Razak’s One Malay – sia .

P.Uthayakumar

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MK invites Malaysian PM for Tamil meet

Express News Service

CHENNAI: Chief Minister M Karunanidhi on Friday invited Malaysian Prime Minister Mohammed Najib Tun Abdul Razak to lead a delegation to the World Classical Conference to be held in Coimbatore in June this year. He also requested the Malaysian Prime Minister to explore possibilities for investments in the State.

During the discussions, Karunanidhi recalled the age-old ties between Malaysia and Tamil Nadu and expressed confidence that Razak’s visit would strengthen it further.Citing that the best in tourism and medicare were available in the State, Karunanidhi said the Malaysian universities should come forward to sign MoUs with the universities here. He also urged the delegation to explore the possibilities for investments in infrastructure development in the State.Malaysian Prime Minister introduced his Cabinet colleagues to the Chief Minister and said that a separate group of ministers was functioning for helping the people of Indian origin living in Malaysia.He said several Tamil schools were functioning in Malayasia and adequate funds were being allocated for these schools. He also promised to depute a multi-member delegation for the Classical Tamil Conference.Deputy Chief Minister MK Stalin, Chief Secretary K S Sripathi and the secretaries of Industries, Finance and Public Departments were present.Meanwhile, JK Tyres Vice Chairman Raghupati Singhania called on Stalin at the Secretariat and held discussions on the manufacturing unit to be set up near Chennai at a cost of Rs 1,600 crore.Mahindra and Mahindra’s president Pawan Goenka also met Stalin and held discussions on the establishment of a manufacturing unit at SIPCOT complex in Tiruvannamalai and another venture at the Volt City at Maraimalai Nagar.

************

Najib’s Indian coup

themalaysianinsider.com, Jan 23 2010

Najib meets with Karunanidhi (left) in Chennai yesterday. — Bernama pic

By Baradan Kuppusamy

KUALA LUMPUR, Jan 23 — Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak may have been basking in the limelight in Chennai after meeting the revered Tamil Nadu Chief Minister “Kalaignar” M. Karunanidhi yesterday, but the benefits for him are here at home, among voters from the Indian community, the vast majority of whom are Tamils.

The landmark visit to Tamil Nadu is a major change in the itineraries of Malaysian prime ministers in their official visits to India.

Najib is the first national leader to visit Chennai and shake hands with Karunanidhi, who is dubbed the Tamil Lion.

During their meeting, Karunanidhi extended a personal invitation to Najib to participate in the World Classical Tamil Conference, which will held in Coimbatore in June.

Meeting Karunanidhi is one of the most cherished ambition of Tamils the world over not just because of his political stamina but also for his command of the Tamil language, his poetry, his writings and his deep knowledge of Tamil literature and history.

Meeting the Tamil Lion face to face is a strategic move to win the hearts of the Tamils in the country, whose support he needs to stay in power in the next general election.

Barisan Nasional has determined that, besides its inherent support from Malay voters and others, it needs a five per cent swing among Indian voters to stay in power.

Najib has been wooing Indian voters in a focused and determined manner even though the BN’s traditional Indian partners — the MIC and PPP — are weakened by one leadership crisis after another.

“Even if the MIC and PPP fails to deliver, Najib believes he can carry the Indian voter on his own charisma and standing as a national leader,” a senior Barisan Nasional leader said.

Najib has been courting the Indian community directly — from offering RM1 billion in unit trust funds, to cash for Tamil school upgrading and ending other endemic woes like the issuance of birth certificates and identity cards.

The visit to Chennai and meeting Kalaignar (poet) is a small step in that direction… to touch base with the Tamils.

Najib can return and brag about it and milk the episode for its high symbolic value — as the first Malaysian prime minister to officially visit the Tamil state and personally meet the Tamil Lion.

Potentially, the Chennai visit can win for him favours from Tamils similar to what his father’s historic 1974 visit to China did for Tun Abdul Razak with the Chinese community — a strong emotional endorsement.

“It is quite a big bragging right… to meet the Kalaignar,” said MIC CWC member KP Samy. “His status among Tamils would be very much enhanced.”

Pakatan Rakyat leaders have also been trying hard to meet Karunanidhi for the same reasons Najib is meeting him — its symbolic value among Tamils in Malaysia and elsewhere.

But they have failed to meet him yet or invite him over to Malaysia.

Attempts are underway by PR’s Indian leaders to also invite Karunanidhi’s son MK Stalin or Vaiko, another popular Tamil politician, but these plans have yet to make it off the drawing board.

‘Allah’ accord remains elusive

By Debra Chong - The Malaysian Insider

KUALA LUMPUR, Jan 23 — The controversy over non-Muslims using the word “Allah” looks likely to rage on further despite an apparent consensus following a pow-wow by Islamic experts here last week.

Former Perlis Mufti Dr Asri Zainul Abidin (picture) told The Malaysian Insider that the main thrust of the day-long expert discussion — or muzakarah as it is termed in the Islamic context — dealt with whether or not non-Muslims could use the word “Allah” and the general agreement was that they could, based on certain guidelines which have yet to be spelled out.

“We discussed whether they could use or not,” Asri said, referring to the ongoing debate on allowing Christians to use the word “Allah” to refer to their God.

But, former Prime Minister Tun Abdullah Badawi who chaired the closed-door expert discussion hosted by the government-linked Institute of Islamic Understanding Malaysia (Ikim), had later told reporters the 70-strong participants had “unanimously agreed” that the source of the “religious crisis” that had befallen Malaysia could be traced back to the “inaccurate” Christian translation of “God” as “Allah” even as he pushed for inter-faith dialogues to resolve the problem.

This prompted a joint clarification from PAS President Datuk Seri Hadi Awang, PKR central committee member Dr Mohd Nur Manuty and Asri.

In their joint statement the three men stated that the use of the word “Allah” for the purposes of religious practices, whether among Christians or Jews was allowed under Islam.

“To ensure national harmony, this debate should be resolved by promoting the culture of inter-faith dialogue which is mature and intelligent.

“The irresponsible use of the word “Allah” must be avoided so that it does not become an issue which can affect racial and religious harmony. As such a guideline on its use must be established,” the three men said.


A huge religious debate had exploded here pitting Muslims against non-Muslims following a landmark High Court ruling last December that the Arabic word “Allah” was not exclusive to Islam and that a Malaysian Catholic newspaper could publish it to refer to God in the Christian sense to cater to their Bahasa Malaysia-speaking followers.

Many Malaysian Muslims claim “Allah” is exclusive to their community.

In his press statement earlier, Abdullah had used the word “a majority” to describe the panellists and participants who shared the view that the “inaccurate” translation of the word “Allah” had been the source of the dispute.

“There were no dissenting views. It was unanimous,” he claimed when asked who the minority participants were who disagreed with the root cause of the problem.

Asri was surprised at Abdullah’s public statement and strongly disagreed with the ex-premier that the day-long discussion centred on whether the translation was accurate or not.

“The question was whether they could use or not,” said Asri.

He said Ikim’s stand was that non-Muslims were misusing the word “Allah”.

“But that’s a different concept of religion,” Asri emphasised to The Malaysian Insider, pointing out that non-Muslims were entitled to argue the theological differences.

“We,” Asri stressed, referring to himself, the PAS president and the PKR leader, “say they can use the word ‘Allah’, but must have certain guidelines.”

The Muslim cleric frequently described as a maverick said Ikim concurred on that point and said they would discuss further what those guidelines should be.

But Asri, who was among seven panellists invited to head the expert discussion, said he would not be involved in those extra discourses.

The other speakers were: PAS president, Datuk Seri Hadi Awang; PKR central leadership council member, Dr Mohd Nur Manuty; religious adviser to the prime minister, Datuk Dr Abdullah Md Zain; Dr Kamar Oniah Kamaruzzaman, an associate professor in the International Islamic University’s Usuluddin and Comparative Religion department; Dr Mohd Sani Badron, Ikim’s centre of economic and social studies director; and his Ikim colleague Md Asham Ahmad, a fellow in the centre for syariah, law and politics centre.

Some 70 people took part in the discussion, including representatives from the Attorney General’s Chambers, state Islamic councils, state mufti department, academics and non-governmental Muslim organisations.

Ikim had been set up in 1992 “to promote the real understanding of Islam in order to sanctify the true teachings of the religion without indulging in rhetorics or diverging from the correct path”, according to the information on its website.

Two women nabbed in ‘Dead Maid in Trunk’ case

KUALA LUMPUR, Jan 23 — Two women have been detained to facilitate investigations into a case where the body of an Indonesian maid was brought here from Melaka, in a car last Thursday.

The duo were picked up early yesterday, after lodging a report at the Kuala Lumpur Hospital police beat base over the death of the 30-year-old maid, believed to have been due to illness.

The maid died at her employer’s house in Melaka Tengah. Bukit Aman CID deputy chief (Investigations/Law) Datuk Acryl Sani Abdullah Sani said today, the two women comprised a maid employment agency worker and a private hospital nurse.

Their arrests bring to eight, the number of people picked up in connection with the maid’s death.

The others are an employment agent, employer, employer’s friend and a taxi driver.

The six, aged between 20 and 50, were detained separately at various locations here and Melaka.

In Melaka, a post-mortem report has revealed that the Indonesian maid whose body was ferried in a car from Melaka to Kuala Lumpur, was bludgeoned to death.

According to the report, a blunt object was used to inflict the fatal injuries on the victim’s chest and abdomen.

The police have classified the case as murder. Melaka Tengah police chief ACP Salehhudin Abd Rahman said the victim, identified as Nurul Aida, 31, had been working for her employer in Taman Peringgit Jaya here, since last September.

He told a news conference today that the woman from Bokak, Indonesia, had entered the country legally but her passport expired last year.

He said the police had obtained a seven-day remand order to detain nine people, including the maid’s employer and wife. — Bernama

ZUL NORDIN LODGES POLICE REPORT AGAINST KHALID SAMAD

(Bernama) -- The strained relations between Parti Keadilan Rakyat's (PKR) Member of Parliament Zulkifli Noordin and PAS' Shah Alam Member of Parliament Khalid Samad took another twist today with the former lodging a police report against the latter.

Zulkifli said the report was regarding Khalid's statement that a Selangor enactment which prohibited non-Muslims from using the word "Allah" and other Islamic terms as outdated.

Speaking to reporters after lodging the report at the Masjid India police station here, he said he wanted police to take action against Khalid.

On Jan 21, Khalid was reported by new portal MalaysiaKini as saying the enactment was outdated and that when it was passed, Muslims’ understanding of Islam was probably too low that they needed to be protected.

On the differences between the two, whose parties are in the Pakatan opposition coalition, The Star newspaper today carried a report quoting Khalid as saying that during a recent discourse with Opposition leader and PKR de factor leader Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim on the prohibition, Zulkifli had kept quiet while other leaders had expressed their views.

The report further quoted Khalid as saying: "There is an Arabic saying that the dog barks but the caravan moves on. I am not going to respond to his emotionally driven comments. I am just a caravan but I did not say he is the dog."

Former Gerak head Mohd Nazree to join PKR

(Harakah Daily) - Former student leader Mohd Nazree Yunus is set to join PKR Youth and the official announcement is due to be made as early as Sunday, PKR insiders told Harakahdaily. Mohd Nazree took over the helm of Gerak or Integrity and Anti-Corruption Movement after former PKR Youth chief Ezam Mohd Noor defected to Umno in May 2008. He has since resigned from Gerak, sparking a swirl of speculation that he was about to make his entree into politics.

“His joining PKR is a decision by the Youth wing. They believe he can add value to the party and to the Pakatan family," the PKR insider told Harakahdaily.

"It is hard to say if it is a good decision because there are some members who worry that he may cause trouble later on. However, he is being welcomed with an open mind and there are high hopes that he expand the reach of the Youth wing."

A thing of the past

Of late, Gerak appears to have stood more on the side of the Umno-BN rather than the Pakatan Rakyat. A good example is the police report Mohd Nazree lodged against PKR Mentri Besar of Selangor Khalid Ibrahim.

The Gerak chief accused Khalid of abusing his powers by spending RM110,400 of state funds to buy 46 cows during the Hari Raya korban or sacrifice festival. The cattle was slaughtered and distributed to Khalid’s constituents in Bandar Tun Razak.

Despite the frivolous nature of the allegation, it stirred up heat for PKR as Selangor Umno leaders such as former MB Khir Toyo seized on the opportunity to discredit Khalid and his state administration.

Mohd Nazree was formerly the head of the Universiti Malaya Muslim Students Association.

For whom the bell tolls

Who are the traitors here? Are the traitors those who hijrah in search of a better life like what the Prophet Muhammad did? Or are the traitors those who ignore the patriotic contribution of Malayans from the mid-1800s to the mid-1900s?

NO HOLDS BARRED

Raja Petra Kamarudin

Malaysians who ‘abandon’ their country and migrate to another country are traitors, says an Umno Minister. Is he speaking on behalf of the Malaysian government, on behalf of Umno, on behalf of Barisan Nasional, on behalf of the Malay race, or on behalf of the Muslim ummah (community)?

Malays always scream, rant and rave that Islam comes first and everything else goes to the bottom of the priority list. Even the Member of Parliament for Kulim -- someone from what can be considered a liberal party, PKR -- says that he puts Islam first and everything else second. So let us assume that Ahmad Husni Hanadzlah, being a Muslim, speaks from the Islamic perspective. I doubt he would dare declare otherwise.

Islam stipulates that if you suffer persecution, oppression, injustice, and discrimination under a dictatorial regime, then it is your duty to hijah (migrate). And hijrah is very important to Islam. Hijrah is what the Prophet Muhammad was commanded by God to do. And the day of the Prophet’s hijrah is the day the Muslim calendar begins. That is how important hijrah is to Islam.

Is this Muslim Minister from Umno whacking Prophet Muhammad and calling him a traitor?

Many Malaysians died for their country. The Indians and Chinese migrated to British Malaya between the mid-1800s to about 1920 when the British started to tighten the immigration policy and no longer brought in labourers from India and China to work the railway, public works, plantations and tin mines in Malaya.

But this did not mean that immigration came to a complete stop. The British still brought in Indians to serve in the civil service and to serve as schoolteachers. This was because the local Malays, at that time, were not so proficient in the English language compared to the Indians. So the Indians were required as government servants and teachers.

Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad’s father is one example of an English language teacher from India who came to Malaya and eventually married a Malay woman, resulting in the birth of Dr Mahathir.

Many Indian and Chinese immigrants married in Malaya, sometimes to fellow Indians and Chinese and sometimes to local Malays (that is why many Malays look more Indian and Chinese compared to their Indonesian cousins). And understandably they sired children born in Malaya. And these local born sons and daughters of the immigrants are those Malaysian Indians and Chinese of today, many who have never stepped foot in India or China since the day they were born.

Their parents and grandparents (some are third or fourth generation Malaysians while some, like the Melaka Chinese, have been ‘locals’ since 500 years ago) came to Malaya to serve the country and died in this country. And some of these 'immigrants' have been in the country longer than even Malays who are only second or third generation Malaysians.

The question of who came first is an arguable issue. There are Indians and Chinese who have been in Malaysia for hundreds of years and there are Malays who have been in the country less than 100 years. Nevertheless, this article is not to argue about who is more Bumiputera -- the Malays, Indians or Chinese.

Everyone -- Malays, Indians and Chinese alike -- are sons and daughters of immigrants. It would be very difficult to dissect the three different races based on generalising. You would have to look at it on a case-to-case basis. My family came to Malaya in the mid-1700s. Tian Chua’s family came to Malaya much earlier than that. Dr Mahathir and Khir Toyo are merely second generation Malaysians although one became the Prime Minister and the other the Chief Minister of a State.

Okay, the purpose of this article is not to argue who is more Bumiputera as we can argue till the cows come home and will never reach a consensus. What I want to talk about is who has served this country and, therefore, can be considered a true patriot.

The railway, roads, bridges and buildings, right up to maybe the 1980s or so (that means for more than 100 years), were built by the Indians and Chinese (not the Malays). I still remember even as recent as the 1970s when Indians would work in the hot sun building the roads and laying the railway lines. They also worked in the estates and plantations. And the same goes for the tin mines and the construction industry, which were mainly a Chinese affair.

And many died. There were numerous cases where entire Chinese communities were wiped out by disease and war and they had to bring in fresh loads of Chinese workers from China to replace those who had died. And the living conditions of these workers were pathetic. Trust me when I say detention under the Internal Security Act in Kamunting is luxurious compared to what these Indians and Chinese had to endure.

The Malayan civil service, legal system, education system, and whatnot, depended on the English educated Indians brought in from India. It was not until the 1920s or so, when the immigration policy was tightened, that the Malays were educated enough to start filling the ranks of the civil service. Even by the time of Merdeka the country still depended on the immigrants because there were not enough educated Malays to serve the country.

And almost all these people died in this country (only some went home to die) and their Malaysian-born children, grandchildren and great grandchildren are those Indians and Chinese you see in the country today.

To sum up: this country was built by the non-Malays. What we see today is the result of the contribution by the non-Malays. Initially, Malaya’s economy depended on rubber and tin, long before we had factories and heavy industries. And it was because we had immigrant Indians and Chinese is why we saw a thriving rubber and tin industry. If not because of rubber and tin, Malaysia would be amongst the poorest countries in this world.

Then we had three wars - the Second World War, the Malayan Emergency, and the Konfrantasi with Indonesia. And not just Malayans, but many foreign ‘Mat Salleh’ (white skins), as well as Africans, Fijians, Gurkhas, Indians, Punjabis, Bengalis, and many more, died in these wars. Of course, Malays died as well. But Malays were not the only ones who died in these three wars. See the statistics in the addendum below to get an idea of those who sacrificed their lives for this country.

But is the contribution of these patriots ever remembered? The Malays scream, rant and rave that this is a Malay country. They declare that this is Tanah Melayu (Malay land). But we might not even have a country, at least not in the form that we see it now, if not for the fact that many not of Malay origin laid down their lives for this country. If the non-Malays, including the ‘Mat Salleh’, had not died for this country, Malaysia would no longer be an independent nation but just a small province of Indonesia.

When Malays talk about dying for your country, they just look at the three wars. But the death toll for these wars does not even come close to the death toll of those who died serving this country in other ways. Some died defending the country in wars. But many more died in the effort to build this country to what it is today. And many also died of mere old age after serving this country their entire life and then retired here as citizens.

But how do we repay these patriots or children and grandchildren of patriots not of Malay origin? We insult them. We threaten them. We discriminate against them. We oppress them. We persecute them. We treat them as second-class citizens. We refuse to recognise the patriotic contribution of their parents, grandparents or great grandparents in defending this country and in building this country to what it is today.

So these people feel hurt. So they feel that the sacrifices and contribution of their forefathers are not remembered and appreciated. So they decide to leave the country and go to another country that can better-appreciate their talents and skills instead of threatening and subjecting them to screams of “go back to your own country”.

Who are the traitors here? Are the traitors those who hijrah in search of a better life like what the Prophet Muhammad did? Or are the traitors those who ignore the patriotic contribution of Malayans from the mid-1800s to the mid-1900s?

The Umno Ministers should be made to pass a history test before they can be appointed as Ministers. And they should also be made to pass a lie detector test every time they make a statement.

As the Malays would say: bodoh (stupid) is bad enough. Bodoh sombong (arrogantly stupid) is unforgivable. And Umno Ministers are just that -- bodoh sombong.

ADDENDUM
Combatants in the Malayan Emergency

United Kingdom

Australia

New Zealand

Federation of Malaya

Rhodesia

Fiji

Various British East African colonies

Breakdown of the combatants in the Malayan Emergency

250,000 Malayan Home Guard troops

40,000 regular Commonwealth personnel

37,000 Special Constables

24,000 Federation Police

Casualties in the Malayan Emergency

Killed: 1,346 Malayan troops and police (of many races) and 519 British military personnel

Wounded: 2,406 Malayans (of many races) and British troops/police

Civilian: 2,478 killed, 810 missing (of many races including 'Mat Salleh')

Malaysian-Indonesian Konfrontasi

Combatants in the Konfrontasi

Malaysia

United Kingdom

Australia

New Zealand

And with supported from the United States

Allied Casualties

114 killed

181 wounded

Indonesian Casualties

590 killed

222 wounded

Civilian casualties

36 killed

53 wounded

4 taken prisoner

The forces that served during the Konfrontasi period to secure Malaysia’s freedom and independence

United Kingdom

Royal Navy:

40 Commando Royal Marines

42 Commando Royal Marines

Sections of Special Boat Service

Detachments of 845 Naval Air Squadron (Wessex)

Detachments of 846 Naval Air Squadron (Whirlwind)

Detachments of 848 Naval Air Squadron (Wessex)

849 NAS Fairey Gannet AEW on HMS Victorious

British Army

Squadron of Life Guards

Squadrons of 1st The Queen's Dragoon Guards

Squadrons of Queen's Royal Irish Hussars

Squadrons of 4th Royal Tank Regiment

H Squadron of 5th Royal Tank Regiment

4th Light Regiment Royal Artillery (comprising 29 (Corunna), 88 (Arracan), 97 (Lawsons Company) Light Batteries)

V Light, 132 (Bengal Rocket Troop) Medium Batteries (of 6th Light Regiment Royal Artillery)

T (Shah Sujah’s Troop) and 9 (Plassey) Light Anti Defence Batteries (of 12th Light Air Defence Regiment)

30 Light Anti Defence Battery (Roger’s Company) (of 16th Light Air Defence Regiment)

53 (Louisburg) Light Anti Defence Battery (of 22nd Light Air Defence Regiment)

11 (Sphinx) Light Anti Defence Battery (of 34th Light Air Defence Regiment)

40th Light Regiment Royal Artillery (comprising 38 (Seringapatum), 129 (Dragon), 137 (Java) Light Batteries)*

70 Light, 176 (Abu Klea) Light, 170 (Imjin) Medium Batteries (of 45th Light Regiment Royal Artillery)

8 (Alma), 7 (Sphinx), 79 (Kirkee), 145 (Maiwand), Commando Light Batteries (of 29th and 95th Commando Light Regiments, Royal Artillery)

1st Battalion, Scots Guards

Guards Independent Parachute Company

1st Battalion, King's Own Scottish Borderers

1st Battalion, Gordon Highlanders

1st Battalion, Royal Ulster Rifles

1st Battalion, Queen's Own Highlanders

1st Battalion, Queen's Own Buffs, The Royal Kent Regiment

1st Battalion, Durham Light Infantry

1st Battalion, Argyll and Sutherland Highlanders

1st Battalion, Royal Leicestershire Regiment

1st Battalion, King's Own Yorkshire Light Infantry

1st Green Jackets (43rd and 52nd)

2nd Green Jackets, The King's Royal Rifle Corps

3rd Green Jackets, The Rifle Brigade

2nd Battalion, The Parachute Regiment

D Company, 3rd Battalion, The Parachute Regiment

1st Battalion, Royal Hampshire Regiment

22 Special Air Service

1st and 2nd Battalions of 2nd Gurkha Rifles

1st and 2nd Battalions, 6th Gurkha Rifles;

1st and 2nd Battalions, 7th Gurkha Rifles;

1st and 2nd Battalions, 10th Gurkha Rifles;

Gurkha Independent Parachute Company

Detachments 656 Squadron Army Air Corps

Various units from Corps of Royal Engineers

Various units from the Royal Corps of Signals

RAF

Detachments 15 Squadron RAF Regiment

Detachments 34 Squadron (Beverley) stationed in Singapore

Detachments 48 Squadron (Hastings and Beverley) stationed at RAF Changi, Singapore

Detachments 209 Squadron (Pioneer and Twin Pioneer)

Detachments 52 Squadron (Valetta) stationed at RAF Butterworth, Malaya

Detachments 66 Squadron (Belvedere) stationed at RAF Seletar, Singapore

Detachments 103 Squadron (Westland Whirlwind HC 10) stationed at RAF Seletar, Singapore

Detachments 110 Squadron (Westland Sycamore then Whirlwind) stationed at RAF Seletar, Singapore

Detachments 205 Squadron (AVRO Shackleton MR Mk2) stationed at RAF Changi, Singapore

225 Squadron (Westland Whirlwind HC 2)

230 Squadron (Westland Whirlwind HC 10)

81 Squadron (Canberra PR 9) stationed at RAF Tengah, Singapore

20 Squadron (Hawker Hunter) stationed at RAF Tengah, Singapore

60 Squadron (Gloster Javelin) stationed at RAF Tengah, Singapore

64 Squadron (Gloster Javelin) stationed at RAF Tengah, Singapore

45 Squadron (Canberra) stationed at RAF Tengah, Singapore

74 Squadron (English Electric Lightning) stationed at RAF Tengah, Singapore

15 Squadron Handley Page Victor stationed in at RAF Tengah and Butterworth)

Australia

102 Field Battery Royal Australian Artillery.

3rd Battalion, Royal Australian Regiment

4th Battalion, Royal Australian Regiment

A and B Squadrons of the Australian Special Air Service Regiment

Malaysia

Malaysian Army

Squadron of Malaysian Reconnaissance Regiment

A and B Batteries (of 1st Regiment, Malaysian Artillery)

3rd Battalion, Royal Malay Regiment

5th Battalion, Royal Malay Regiment

8th Battalion, Royal Malay Regiment

1st Battalion, Singapore Infantry Regiment

Royal Federation of Malay States Police

Police Special Branch

Battalion of Police Field Force

New Zealand

1st Battalion, Royal New Zealand Infantry Regiment

1st Ranger Squadron

41 Squadron (Canberra)

Detachments 41 Squadron (Bristol Freighter)

Malaysia faces its own credibility crisis

Recent tax hikes including new taxes like the GST are but a desperate attempt to plug the leaks in the national coffers. It will become exceedingly difficult for any country to sustain economic growth and finance its economic plans unless it manages to create the conditions that attract investments and create employment from new jobs and industries.

By STEVE OH/MySinchew

I write in response to your Opinion article The Third Way.

Thatcherism was the natural response to decades of socialist policies that threatened to make her country economically sluggish. It worked to a degree.

The British social welfare state had become costly to run and the solution was to make governance more cost-efficient by privatization of nationally owned enterprises. It was the golden era of privatization and what writers described as "classical liberalism" but such terms are meaningless to most people except the economic purists who like to pigeon-hole people and policies into neat ideological boxes.

But I can appreciate the need to make governments more efficient.

As a young auditor then in charge of the audit of the British Railways Southern Region in London, I saw the folly of a system that created inefficiency and the sight of several idle workers standing beside one or two that were actually doing the work because of the quirky ways of trade unionism that prevented workers from doing something not prescribed in the agreements that unwittingly made them unproductive.

In essence Thatcherism, according to her Chancellor of the Exchequer Nigel Lawson, was "free markets, financial discipline, and firm control over public expenditure, tax cuts, nationalism, Victorian values", privatization and a dash of populism." Thatcher was foremost in dismantling the tight control of trade unions. It was her courage in introducing unpopular measures that gained her the reputation of "Iron Lady."

Malaysia desperately needs an "Iron Leader" to install policies that will help the country instead of the flawed policies of the past that has seen the country's development unfairly skewed and resulting in social disunity and political backwardness.

Her ideas were compared then to similar policies adopted in other English-speaking nations in the late eighties and nineties, for example, America's Reagonomics, New Zealand's Rogernomics and Australia's Economic Rationalism, though Australia was then governed by a supposedly socialist Labour government. Many of their policies were unpopular but they did bring about the economic benefits of tax and other reforms.

In the UK the Labour governments of John Major and Tony Blair pursued with Thatcher's policies and there is little to distinguish between Australian Paul Keating's Labour policies in the and Liberal John Howard's when they were in power respectively and today it is folly to subscribe to any particular model for its sake except the one that works for the county.

In Malaysia we know that its economic policies are fraught with shortcomings, constraints and contradictions and the drop in foreign direct investments and capital outflows from the country should sound the alarm bells.

Recent tax hikes including new taxes like the GST are but a desperate attempt to plug the leaks in the national coffers. It will become exceedingly difficult for any country to sustain economic growth and finance its economic plans unless it manages to create the conditions that attract investments and create employment from new jobs and industries.

While Malaysia is not hampered by trade unionism some government programs exacerbated by corruption evident by cost blowouts have resulted in wastage of public funds and questionable expenditure. There is much that can be done to improve accountability.

Liberalising the media, enactment of protection for whistleblowers, changes to the Official Secrets Act etc are helpful measures but may not be politically acceptable to the incumbent administration. Ultimately it is the political will to face the music that makes for good governance but that is unlikely to happen in Malaysia with the present government. KPIs and all that technical stuff are useless without the political will to make the hard decisions.

It is difficult for any system to change when one political party has been in power for so long.

China in the eighties under the visionary Deng Xiaopeng pursued a radical policy of private enterprise which unshackled his country's precipitous dependence on failed state-owned and state-run businesses. When the deadwood in the system was removed it ushered in a new era of positive economic outcomes that continues till now and recently the Chinese government has had to use monetary policy to curtail its accelerated growth to curb inflation and prevent the economic bubbles.

His famous "don"t care what cat it is as long as it catches mice" saying has encapsulated China's economic miracle.

It provides a lesson for Malaysia's administrators who insist that the cat must be of a certain colour and pedigree even though it fails to do the job. Until there is a management by results system in place and meritocracy is restored in the public and private sectors Malaysia risks becoming a mediocre nation like the Philippines that was the brightest economic star in the region in the 50's and 60's before it suffered decades of corruption under the Marcos regime and became a basket case.

Malaysia too will suffer the same fate, as its population grows, the economically productive emigrate, and the country's public institutions succumb to further corruption, unless it gets serious about the country's interests before political interests, and brings about serious reforms.

Instead of OneMalaysia perhaps the focus should be on FirstMalaysia.

Whether it is the Keynesian economics of huge government spending and unbridled money supply or Thatcherism which tried to reverse the ills of big government, the fact is only two years ago the world saw the Great Financial Meltdown. All our economic wisdom could not protect us from human greed.

All the emphasis on religion is worthless until faith is seen in works that produce tangible benefits for the nation. Politicians have much to answer for playing with fire in manipulating religion and race and using hype to deceive the public. The fruit of failed government policies is seen in a society that still sees mobs taking to the streets to intimidate others and who resort to firebombing and other acts of terror.

The Global Financial Crisis was really the American Financial Crisis--the result of unbridled greed of those who bled the system and the gullible and vulnerable public. Looking at the root of the problem perhaps it"d be more accurate to describe it as the American Moral Crisis. But the masters of hype can be duplicitous about the truth.

Malaysia faces its own Credibility Crisis.

No one doubts that when America sneezes the rest of the world catches a cold but in the interest of truth one needs to point the finger at the American system and way of life itself which allow Americans to live beyond their means and affect the rest of the world when things go awry.

Surely American national interest must also consider the global interest, if America is willing to go to war in some foreign country to protect it but not worry if its actions at home will affect the countries that depend on it.

The conviction of Bernard Madoff for fraud, the former Chairman of the NASDAQ Stock Exchange, who could not account for the missing $65 billion from client accounts was the pinnacle of Amercian greed, and it could only happen in America, in terms of the magnitude of the sum involved.

But in fairness the American way is still the best way because it is democratic and has the uncanny ability to right itself when the American ship wobbles in rough seas. In grappling with its problems in a democratic way and upholding the rule of law, proves that the country is mature, fair, and willing to admit its mistakes.

When President Barrack Obama recently admitted losing touch with the American people after the Republicans won a key senate seat that was held by the late Democrat Ted Kennedy it proved the American way is admirable when leaders admit mistakes instead of blaming others.

However differently you frame or name a principle or idea, you can"t avoid doing the right things if you want the desired result that is fair and good for the country as a whole. It is the missing ingredient in the Malaysian recipe. It is in not taking heed of the critics that enlarges the Archilles heel of the politicians.

For many years the book The Malay Dilemma provided the politicians with the ammunition to shoot at critics and opponents of its discriminatory policies and its untested claims were accepted as the truth. It took twenty two years for its author to publicly lament he failed to change his people despite doing his best to help them. But to his detractors, those of his race, it was the author who failed not the people.

The Malaysian Maverick, a recently released book on Malaysia but unofficially banned touches on the lost billions but more than that were the lost opportunities to turn the nation into a first-world country if only greed had not hijacked public policies that engendered a system of political patronage, cronyism and corruption that festers until today.

Malaysia is a unique country with peculiar problems but they are not unsolvable or are they all that difficult to resolve. What is missing is integrity. There are many capable Malaysians who can do the job but they are shut out because of the system of cronyism that breeds corruption which is incompatible with a "clean, efficient and trustworthy" system. We saw how honest judges were victimized in 1988 when the judiciary was hijacked by the executive.

The truth is the problems are nothing compared to what some other countries face and sadly many of the problems are the result of gratuitous and often unfair politicization and appear self-generated by an administration that tries to control everything when it should focus on doing the right thing.

Take the Allah saga as an example. After all the trouble the latest decision is to allow Christians in Sabah and Sarawak to use the term Allah. It is back to square one--almost. But why even bother to rock the boat in the first place? What good has the banning done for the country or anyone?

Malaysia does not need another slogan or new economic fad.

It only needs to do what is right and good for the people. There are many capable Malaysians who can help the nation. It is not short of ideas but those in power lack the moral will to resist the temptations and do what is good. Corruption is like the strangling fig tree that has taken root in the country and threatens to strangulate it.

Corrupt politicians are like strangling figs and the challenge is to not let them take root in the host tree which is the country's administration. Malaysia desperately needs leaders who are decent men and women of integrity and intelligence, who know and understand the times and hear the cries of the people, and will act fairly and expeditiously to restore the integrity and efficacy of governance.

Malaysia simply has to follow the Right Way--which requires its leaders to do what is right and for the right people to take charge. It is time for the clean and competent to take over if they can get into power and for the country to stop running a one-legged race, which seems to me is what OneMalaysia seems to convey.

(STEVE OH is the author of Tiger King of the Golden Jungle-Tkotgj.com.)

The Fight Over ‘Allah’ – Malaysia’s delicate balance is at risk

By Ioannis Gatsiounis
(From the magazine issue dated Feb 1, 2010)

The interethnic chaos Malaysia has long feared moved closer to reality this month when 10 churches were at-tacked around the country. The attacks followed a civil-court ruling on New Year’s Eve declaring that a law prohibiting non-Muslims from using the word “Allah” to describe their God was unconstitutional. Strangely, though, Christians have been using “Allah” for “God” in East Malaysia since the 1920s without much controversy. So why the sudden spate of violence in a nation long viewed as a model of tolerance in the Muslim world?

The answer is that beneath Malaysia’s outward glow of progressive moderation, racial and religious consciousness has risen steadily among Muslim Malays, who make up 60 percent of the population. That creeping conservatism has been fanned by the United Malays National Organization (UMNO), seeking to revive support that is slipping amid rampant corruption and other forms of misrule. Rather than trying to quell misgivings among Malays who felt that the use of “Allah” to describe the Christian God would sow confusion, the government appealed the decision, saying that Muslim sensitivities must be respected to protect the fragile ethnic balance. Then UMNO leaders, including Prime Minister Najib Razak, said the government could not stop planned protests against the ruling, though he has often opposed the exercise of free speech in the past. Critics charge the government with institutionalizing racism and emboldening Muslim hardliners. Whatever the case, the church attacks are the clearest sign yet that Malaysia’s racial-religious compact is unraveling.

During the 1980s and 1990s Malaysia transformed itself from an agrarian-based economy to a manufacturing one. More recently it has struggled to shed its low-value-added, low-wage structure. Private investment, now at 11 percent of GDP, is down more than two thirds since the late 1990s at least in part because of investor concern about the social tension. Efforts to create a high-tech innovation economy have been set back by the flight of talent: opposition leader Lim Kit Siang says 300,000 “top brains” have fled to Singapore since the last general election. Now Malaysia’s reputation for stability is under threat, and investors are jittery amid reports that Malaysia saw the biggest foreign-exchange outflows in Asia last year. Though some an-alysts give Najib high marks as a liberalizing economic reformer, sectarian unrest won’t help, and could well thwart the country’s aim of becoming a fully developed nation by 2020.

The church attacks also threaten regional stability. Indonesia’s Muslim leaders have cautioned Muslims there not to take their cue from Malaysia. The U.S. government issued a travel advisory warning that the court ruling could trigger criminal or terrorist attacks on foreigners in Malaysia’s eastern Sabah province, which borders the southern Philippines, home to the Qaeda-linked Abu Sayyaf. And so it is that in a few short weeks Malaysia has gone from pointing the way for Muslims in neighboring countries to joining the list of regional hot spots.

Last week the government took a step to undo the damage, saying Christians may use “Allah” in the states of Penang, Sarawak, and Sabah, and in the Federal Territory, which includes Kuala Lumpur. That, along with Malaysians’ tendency to avoid racial confrontation, may stave off wider violence. But it hardly addresses the festering racial resentments that precipitated the attacks.

Almost 40 years ago the government introduced a policy of positive discrimination for Malays, a move that helped reduce income disparities between the Malay majority and the big Chinese and Indian minorities. But it also heightened communal identification, restricted educational and economic opportunities for non-Malays, and bred dependency among the Malays. Until now, all that was hidden by political sloganeering, tightly controlled media, and billions spent on eye-catching infrastructure projects in-tended to make Malaysia appear both modern and progressive. But the at-tacks have blown the cover off the myth of racial harmony. Now Malaysia must get down to the nitty-gritty of building a truly pluralistic society. As the church bombings make clear, it can’t afford not to.

Gatsiounis is a Malaysia-based journalist and author, most recently, of Velvet & Cinder Blocks, a story collection detailing a planned attack on a Christian landmark in Malaysia.

Explosive rumour is true after all

The Star

If nobody heard the grenade go off, did it explode? And so the incident at the army headquarters went unreported for a week. The army insisted there was no cover up, only nobody asked about it.

AT AROUND 3am on Jan 15, an M79 grenade was fired into the compound of the Thai Army headquarters in Bangkok, landing near the office of Army chief General Anupong Paochinda.

The Thai authorities kept silent about the attack until the media broke the story a week later. In fact, as late as Thursday, Defence spokesman Thanathip Sawangsaeng had claimed that ill-intentioned people were trying to create chaos by circulating such a rumour.

Later that day, Army spokesman Colonel Sansern Kaewkamnerd acknowledged that the “rumour” was indeed true.

However, he said the army was not trying to cover up the attack but that nobody had asked about it.

According to Sansern, as reported by the Bangkok Post, a grenade was fired from an M79 grenade launcher into the sixth floor of the headquarters building, damaging a kitchen next to a fitness room.

“The grenade was likely launched at night because no one heard the sound of the explosion,” he said. He, however, denied that the blast occurred near the office of the Army chief.

Sansern said the army believed the attacker was not trying to injure or kill anyone but was trying to seek publicity.

“I talked to Gen Anupong, and he was not worried about the situation, nor did he feel humiliated. But he insisted that action must be taken under the law.”

The M79 grenade launcher, according to a report in The Nation, is the weapon of choice in recent attacks on political enemies.

In 2008, seven M79 grenades were fired (on different occasions) at supporters of the People’s Alliance for Democracy (PAD or Yellow Shirts as the anti-Thaksin movement is popularly known) who were camped at the office of the Prime Minister in Bangkok.

And in November 2009, PAD co-leader Sondhi Limthongkul was also targeted in an M79 attack. But it missed the target.

The usual suspect for M79 grenade attacks is Major General Khattiya Sawasdipol, a 59-year-old military specialist.

In 2008, Khattiya, who despises the Yellow Shirts, warned that if they continued their siege of the Prime Minister’s office, they would be doing it at their own risk.

Soon, grenades were launched at them, killing and injuring several Yellow Shirts supporters.

In November 2009, he made headlines when he slipped into Cambodia to meet up with former Thai Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra, the number one enemy of the Abhisit Vejjajiva-led coalition government.

On Thursday, the military authorised the police to raid Khattiya’s residence in the compound of the 4th Cavalry Battalion in Bangkok. They found an M26 grenade and a 38-calibre pistol with a number of bullets.

Later, police raided the home of Khattiya’s driver, Sergeant Natsit Suwannarat, and discovered more weapons – 32 grenades, 700 rounds of M16 ammunition, three packs of C4 explosives and 13 sticks of TNT, as well as some spent shells.

Khattiya denied that he was involved in the M79 grenade attack as he was not in the Thai capital at the time of the attack. In a telephone interview with The Nation, he said: “Many people dislike Anupong, or maybe some ‘third hand’ wants to create chaos.

“Don’t blame me. You have no evidence to pin it on me. If I had done it, he’d be dead, but I would not do such a thing, because he’s my friend.”

Previously, Khattiya had warned that if he was suspended (over the trip to visit Thaksin in Cambodia and for insubordination in publicly criticising Anupong), he would see to it that Anupong “could not go out on the streets”.

He has since been in conflict with Anupong over the army chief’s role in suspending him from active duty. On Thursday, in a scathing opinion piece in the Bangkok Post, its former editor Veera Prateepchaikul wrote:

“The tightened guard around the army chief following the recent grenade attack may give him a sense of security, but for the public at large the big question remains: how can we feel safe when the army chief himself is unsafe and needs more protection?

“This outrageous incident is a direct challenge to the authority of General Anupong in his capacity as the army commander-in-chief, not to mention a huge slap in the face.”

9 pro-democracy students held in Dang Wangi

By Anil Netto

The nine students arrested in front of Sogo this morning are now being held in Dang Wangi.

The nine were among were among a hundred who had gathered this morning for a rally organised by various student groups reportedly to express concern over campus election procedures.

Latest update from Suaram:

Altogether 9 persons were arrested by police for demanding campus autonomy and freedom of academic on 23 January 2010, between 11.30am and noon in front of Sogo shopping mall. Until 1.45pm, they are in IPD Dang Wangi.

Those arrested were:

  1. Mohammad Za’im Mustapha
  2. Ahmad Shukri Kamaruddin
  3. Ahmad Syukri Abrazab
  4. Mohd Idris Bin Mohd Yussoff
  5. Mohd Fikhri Harun
  6. Muhammad Hilman Diham
  7. Syahriul Ismail
  8. Mohd Aizat Bin Mohd Salleh
  9. Mohd Ridhuan Bin Muhammad Jamil

Solidarity Mahasiswa Malaysia (SMM) had organised a peacefully rally to express their demand on campus autonomy and freedom of academic from Dataran Merdeka and they have been arrested in front of Sogo.