Richard Loh expresses his disgust and disappointment over our Prime Minister’s insistence on staying silent when speaking out is the right thing to do for stability and peace, for fairness.
Our soon-to-be powerless leaders are scrambling to seek divine wisdom in historical books like The Art Of War – Sun Tzu and The Three Kingdoms. In fact, most of them have all along been secretly reading these books, never mind that they were written by foreigners; what matters is that the strategies contained within can be applied and used by them to remain in power.
War is never a good thing: people get killed and properties, destroyed. The ramifications are devastating yet these guys have no qualms about leading the charge. Of course, there are times when we have no choice. If there should be an invasion on our soil by hostile outsiders, we might need to rise and defend it. It would even be noble to do so. But there must be something seriously wrong with leaders who do not mind unrest within the nation, who actually perceive some benefit in its citizens injuring one another.
Given the hardline and rather irresponsible approach of our leaders, I am genuinely surprised – even as I am thankful – that a civil war has not erupted in this country. We owe this peace to generally tolerant, right-minded Malaysians, but how long will the rakyat tolerate what has been speculated as state-sponsored gangsterism and hooliganism? These speculations may not be too far from the truth, judging from our leaders’ non-action and silence with regards to the rise in their seemingly targeted rampages. They were certainly a lot more vocal, active and quick in dealing with Bersih 3.0.
The Prime Minister has the right to say his piece on Bersih 3.0, to condemn it if he so chooses. However, his refusal to speak out against antagonsitic rebel-rousers at functions held by the Opposition, NGOs forums, and even the private residence of individuals like Dato’ Ambiga Sreenevasan, is truly worrying. It is truly worrying because it demonstrates the strong presence of bias. One could, in fact, argue that he is deliberately applying what we term as ‘qui tacet consentit’ (silence implies consent).
What’s more, the same Prime Minister who has thundered out that he is the PM for all Malaysians (and that Malaysia has the best democracy in the world), is now suing Malaysians for causing damage to public property during Bersih 3.0. This, despite the fact that investigations have yet to conclude who the instigators really are.
Sure, one who holds power must demonstrate one’s resoluteness. But why does one need to lob unfounded accusations at a largely peace-loving rakyat by going so far as to proclaim that rally goers were there to overthrow the government? I suppose that is one way to put the fear of God into people when the one who is truly fearful is the one issuing the grand proclamations. It is definitely one way to lose the respect of the 200, 000 plus Malaysians who are simply asking for free and fair elections.
The pattern of victimising individuals and groups who peaceably disagree with the government while letting scot-free the evidently injurious samseng, may have finally hit a nerve with Malaysians across the board. I for one have totally lost respect for a PM who seems incapable of running the nation in a non-partisan and balanced manner. Has he then forgotten that he is a PM of an entire nation and not of a party when performing his duties?
The Bar Council was recently chastised for being partisan when it passed a resolution that did not sit well with the ruling regime. So, Mr. Prime Minister, are you truly a PM for all Malaysians? Or are you selectively one for Malaysians who agree with you on everything? Who praise you even for your silence on vicious attacks against critics of the government?
Studying The Art of War may help you win your war. It may even help you stay in power. But any wrong move or dirty tactic bolstered by over-confidence and haste may also backfire and bring undesired destruction and chaos. Peace and some measure of fairness are what people want in their short life-span on earth. They are what Malaysians want in in this country, too. If you can fight a political war through fairer, peaceful means, you’re a winner even after you have lost.
(Featured image accompanying article on main page courtesy of Wazari Wazir, source: http://bit.ly/KRaoRT)