Wednesday, 30 June 2010

Malaysia as an Islamic State; DAP gives a big NO but PAS says why not?

In the occasion of his 70th Birthday on 28 June 2010, Karpal Singh DAP Chairman reiterated the Party's stand that it will oppose any moves to making Malaysia an Islamic state, themalaysianinsider has the story:

No Islamic state for DAP, says Karpal

By Shazwan Mustafa Kamal June 28, 2010

KUALA LUMPUR, June 28 — Despite the seemingly concrete alliance between DAP and PAS under the umbrella of Pakatan Rakyat (PR) and the rush for ulamas by secular parties Umno and PKR, DAP’s age-old stand against the formation of an Islamic state still remains.

While PR still dreams of capturing Putrajaya and ending Barisan Nasional’s (BN) iron grip on the country, the lingering question is: with the setting up of PR, is DAP now willing to accept PAS’s struggle to build an Islamic state in Malaysia?

For DAP national chairman Karpal Singh, the answer remains no.

“It is impossible for DAP to compromise on that. We cannot compromise for the country to turn into an Islamic state (if PR takes over the government in the future).

“It is a secular state. I believe the late Tunku Abdul Rahman has mentioned that before about Malaysia,” the veteran politician told The Malaysian Insider in an exclusive interview.

read the rest of the report

Two days later on 30 June 2010 comes a response from PAS Spiritual Leader Nik Aziz who Challenges Karpal Singh To Prove PAS' Islamic Policies Are Wrong. The story in full from Bernama:

KOTA BAHARU, June 30 (Bernama) -- PAS spiritual leader Datuk Nik Abdul Aziz Nik Mat Wednesday challenged DAP chairman Karpal Singh to prove PAS' concept of an Islamic state, which had been implemented in Kelantan for 20 years now, to be wrong.

Nik Aziz, who is also Kelantan Menteri Besar, said he deemed Karpal Singh's rejection of PAS' idea of an Islamic state for Malaysia if the Pakatan coalition of DAP-PAS-PKR came into power, as the latter's own personal opinion.

"As long as they (who do not agree with PAS' policies) cannot prove that our Islamic policies are wrong, we will continue to strive to make Malaysia an Islamic state," he told reporters after chairing the weekly Kelantan state executive council meeting here.

He added that the DAP thus far had not objected to PAS' Islamic state concept and that only a "few leaders were grumbling about it."

Nik Abdul Aziz said this when asked to comment on Karpal Singh's comments in an interview with a news portal recently that he rejected PAS' concept of an Islamic state for Malaysia.

Nik Aziz is just trying to do damage control and tries to attribute Karpal's statement on an Islamic state as a personal opinion but the silent support from DAP head honcho Lim Kit Siang for Karpal is deafening.

I have always thought that the DAP and PAS with their totally differing political objectives will never make a political coalition that will last, both staying in the Pakatan coalition only made possible by Anwar Ibrahim whose party PKR is only interested to make Anwar as Prime Minister of Malaysia at any cost.

If Anwar is not able to defend himself from the sodomy allegation in his trial then he will face serious time in Prison. If Anwar is in prison, I predict that the glue cementing Pakatan will unravel, even Zaid Ibrahim or Azmin cannot replace the smooth talking chameleon like Anwar who have just cameback from kow towing in Washington.

Pakatan States to have own Legal Advisers?

updated 1 July 2010:

Nazri says Pakatan states can’t have own legal advisers...
read the rest here.

Original Post:

Here is news from TheStar dated 30 June 2010:

Pakatan to appoint own lawyers in four states

KUALA LUMPUR: Pakatan Rakyat has decided to appoint its own legal advisers and lawyers in the four state governments under its control, Opposition Leader Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim said.

Anwar claimed that the legal advisers from the Attorney-General’s Chambers were not independent in giving their input on state legal affairs as they were appointed by the Federal Government.

“This had made work difficult at state level,” he told reporters at the Parliament lobby yesterday.

The opposition states are Kedah, Kelantan, Penang and Selangor.

read the rest

This latest devisive Pakatan move needs some real explanation because as far as my layman's knowledge is concerned The State Legal Advisors of all states in Malaysia reports to the Attorney General.

I understand that generally in Malaysia's parliamentary democracy, the function of the Office of the State Legal Adviser is to:

- advise the State Government on all legal matters;
- to draft all legislations for the State and to arrange for the publication in the Gazette;
- to conduct prosecution of criminal cases;
- to represent the State Government in civil cases;
- to revise and reprint the laws of the State;
- to prepare legal documents for the State.

It is therefore obvious that the State Legal Advisor is appointed by the Attorney General's Office and no one else.

I hope the Attorney General TS Gani Patail will come out with a press release on the issue which if not controlled could unfold into a very serious legal crisis and confuse the rakyat even further. I would also like to hear from the Bar Council on this matter, but I doubt there will be a response from them.

Anwar's claim that the legal advisers from the Attorney-General’s Chambers were not independent in giving their input on state legal affairs as they were appointed by the Federal Government is a very lame and divisive excuse. The PDRM, the Armed Forces, BOMBA, The Medical Services are all provided by the Federal Government so does it follow that with Anwar's logic all these Security and Other Services provided by the Federal Government be changed as well, by who? PAS's Unit Amal?

Jon Voight is blind to the terror wrought by Zionist Israel on the Palestinian People

There is this interesting article I picked up from about a famous Hollywood actor who is apparently a staunch supporter of Zionist Israel and hates the Palestinians with venom:

Jon Voight to Obama: You are harming Israel and promoting anti-Semitism

n an open letter in The Washington Times, staunch Republican actor writes: You will be the first American president that lied to the Jewish people, and the American people as well, when you said that you would defend Israel.

American actor and staunch Republican Jon Voight has submitted a public letter to The Washington Times, in which he accused President Barack Obama of putting Israel in harm's way and promoting anti-Semitism across the world.

"You will be the first American president that lied to the Jewish people, and the American people as well, when you said that you would defend Israel, the only Democratic state in the Middle East, against all their enemies," wrote Voight, who last year called Obama a false prophet.

"You have done just the opposite. You have propagandized Israel, until they look like they are everyone's enemy - and it has resonated throughout the world," he wrote.

"You are putting Israel in harm's way, and you have promoted anti-Semitism throughout the world."

"You have brought this to a people who have given the world the Ten Commandments and most laws we live by today. The Jewish people have given the world our greatest scientists and philosophers, and the cures for many diseases, and now you play a very dangerous game so you can look like a true martyr to what you see and say are the underdogs," he wrote.

"But the underdogs you defend are murderers and criminals who want Israel eradicated."

read the whole article

Obviously Mr Voight have not seen the real Zionist Israeli oppressors who have brought terror on to the Palestinian population in Israel Occupied Territories for decades...see pic. below, a picture tells a thousand words.

Hitler's Nazis terrorize Jews in WWII - Zionist Israel Terrorize Palestinians Now

The latest being the Zionist Israel ongoing inhumane siege of Gaza and the massacre of 9 peace activists on a ship carrying food and medicine bound for Gaza. Refresh your memory here.

One thing that Mr Voight and his Zionist Israel apologists should understand is that people all over the world are NOT anti Jew per se but are anti Zionist Israel's action against the People of Palestine.

Monday, 28 June 2010

Revisiting the Johor Bahru Scenic Bridge Project

Updated on 30 June 2010:

Tun Dr Mahathir came out quite strongly for the Scenic Bridge and is apparently advising PM Najib to stop dithering on his decision. Read Dr Mahathir's latest post here ..Jambatan

Original posting:

It looks like the Johor Bahru Scenic Bridge Project may finally see the light at the end of the dark tunnel as reported in the FreeMalaysiaToday, "Bridge to Replace Causeway: We'll Look into it, Says Najib"

Here are some comments from the blogs:

UMNO veteran Ruhanie Ahmad has been a keen supporter of the bridge.."Sultan Johor, Najib, Jambatan, Dan Pemikiran Strategik"

Big strongly support it as well...
"Sultan Johor titah mahukan Jambatan ganti Tambak Johor"

Surprisingly it seemed the previous PM Abdullah Badawi who cancelled the bridge project arbitrarily the last time, seemed OK with the call by DYMM Sultan Johor to construct the bridge; from the Malay Mail "Up to government to revive bridge project - Abdullah" hmm,the fresh air in his retirement must have some effect on him I suppose.

I hope that PM Najib will seriously consider the building of the Scenic bridge(S-bridge,crooked bridge) as besides the positive warming of relationship between Malaysia and Singapore:

1. The Bridge will finally complete the JB Sentral/Bangunan Iskandar CIQ Complex as the present temporary road going down to the causeway and then going up from the causeway into the complex is too steep and too winding and can never match the gradual slope and curve that the Scenic bridge design would offer. The present exit and entrance road lacks safety standards and certainly does not befit what is supposed to be a world class international border checkpoint.

2. With the planned construction of the bridge, our side of the causeway can be dismantled to finally allow water in Selat Teberau to flow in both directions, no doubt this would improve the overall environment as water gets to be flushed either way depending on the rising and ebbing tide.

3. Of course barges and other smaller vessels with light draughts would be able to travel through the causeway and a viable commercial route can finally be established between Tg Langsat Port, Johor Port and the Port of Tanjung Pelepas without detouring around Singapore. I believe the relevant cost will be made cheaper and this would only contribute positively to the development of the whole Iskandar region as the transport route by road, rail and sea shall be complete.

Best of all... a not very exciting JB will finally have a world class iconic structure that will attract Tourists from all over to see and the economic spin offs such as stays in Hotel accommodations and and shopping in commercial complexes will only make JB a more vibrant and exciting place to visit and stay, besides just being known as a BN mega stronghold all these years.

Lastly on the question of to supply or not to supply sand to Singapore, definitely, we should not have to ask Singapore's consent to build a bridge structure within our sovereign boundary that will benefit all Malaysians.

Khalid Sacked as PKR Selangor Chief, DAP gets what they want

Continuing from what I blogged previously...and Wow, what a weekend it was, after the just completed PKR retreat in Shah Alam it was announced that Khalid Ibrahim has been replaced by Azmin Ali as PKR Selangor New Chief. It seemed the PKR little rebellion did not achieved what the conspirators really wanted which was the ouster of MB Khalid Ibrahim. Though some like PKR Fuziah and Latheefa tried to paint a positive picture of what happened, I think its not just us outsiders but many in PKR are not convinced with the show.

Even before the start of the retreat, the DAP sensing something bad is going to happen to their favourite Selangor MB issued a strongly worded statement to Anwar Ibrahim's PKR to get their act together and giving their solid support to Khalid. PAS and Hassan Ali after the beer fiasco, having already been subjugated by the DAP in Selangor remained silent and just followed along with DAP this time or any other time I guess.

Zaid Ibrahim after his outburst against the PKR rebels was given the WP PKR Chief Post presumably to appease and quite him down a bit. Azmin was given the Selangor PKR Chief post definitely to appease and quiet him and his supporters for a while though how long they will keep quiet remains to be seen.

So there you have it, Khalid gets to keep his Selangor MB post courtesy of the DAP and PAS and indeed what a coincidence, Anwar Ibrahim gets to keep his "Opposition Leader" post in Parliament courtesy of DAP and PAS as well. Its the Golden Age of DAP dominance in Pakatan now friends.

In March 2008 PKR promised so much, a new dawn so to speak but with the infighting within PKR leadership since then, this is just a mirage, I wonder if it could even last as a cohesive political entity before the next GE.

Anwar Ibrahim facing the fight of his life in court over a sodomy allegation must find the strength to let go of the PKR leadership and concentrate his energies to fight in court, he has to make way for another leader to lead PKR now otherwise as events such as PKR Federal and State legislators leaving and also with the failed attempt to ouster MB Khalid Ibrahim just goes to show that Anwar is fast loosing his grip on PKR and the road to Putrajaya is getting more and more longer and more and more winded.

Having said that I hope that BN especially UMNO folks are not gawking with their mouth open watching with glee the events unfolding in Selangor PKR and Pakatan. They have to grab whatever opportunities that come along to ensure recapture of Selangor. It would not be a walk in the park though because as far as I know many state civil servants are quite happy with the Khalid State Government who does not interfere too much with their work asking for tenders to be awarded to their cronies etc. Even if UMNO/BN managed to take back Selangor I think it would not be business as usual as they now have to perform better and be more transparent or otherwise get thrown out again by the rakyat who now have choices.

Saturday, 26 June 2010

The Tale of Two Wees and Ka Siong Vs Perkasa's Ibrahim Ali

Not so long ago I blogged about the speech by Independent MP YB Wee Choo Keong in Parliament which I thought was good constructive criticism aimed at both sides of the political divide,BN and Pakatan. To me YB Wee Choo Keong has all the qualities of a good legislator who represents his constituency well and I do hope he gets re-elected in the next GE so that he will continue bringing up local and national matters in Parliament which would benefit all Malaysians.

There is another YB Wee from the MCA/BN namely Wee Ka Siong who is an MP for Air Hitam in Johor, a constituency of about 55% Malay and 40% Chinese and about 5% Indians. Ka Siong is a Deputy Minister for Education and is also MCA Youth Chief. He has not shown up too much in the radar screen until his name was mentioned in the PKFZ affair and I remembered him crying a little bit in a press conference after a tussle with the then MCA President YB Ong Tee Keat. I find that he is quite particular when it comes to Chinese education though and the latest was his comment on the JPS Scholarship issue vis-a-vis the Mara Scholarship which sparked a tiff between him and Ibrahim Ali:

Watch the video of YB Ibrahim Ali press conference "Wee's statement is rude and insolent", The Free Malaysia Today reported on the press conference here.

Read report by Utusan Malaysia here "Saya tetap pertahankenyataan, berdiri atas kebenaran"

... and then lo and behold KJ coming into the fray defending Ka Siong and having his own tiff with Perkasa's Ibrahim Ali as well, read here.

I don't think KJ will get much support though from anybody except his appointed exco in UMNO Youth for defending Wee Ka Siong and calling Ibrahim Ali a Jaguh Kampung. I personally find KJ using the word kampung as being "menghina" as he was elected as MP in Rembau which makes himself a jaguh from the kampung as well kan. Kalau dia nak jadi jaguh bandar try a seat at Bukit Bintang Kuala Lumpurlah KJ berani ka. Anyway this is a good response to KJ..Menjawab tuduhan Khairy terhadap Perkasa.

Coming back to YB Wee Ka Siong, I think he should do well to remember that he was elected from a Malay majority seat based on the BN formula of sharing power. As such his platform should be representing ALL the communities he represent in Air Hitam and he should really work to get rid of this increasing perception that he is too Chinese community centric, its acceptable to show that you care a bit more for the Chinese community but do not go to extremelah it might cause him his parliamentary seat next GE13. Additionally YB Wee, calling other Malaysian "primitive" does not help OK. I think YB Wee Ka Siong could learn a thing or two from YB Wee Choo Keong.

Another thing is the days where politicians in Malaysia be they Malay or Non Malays can belittle and criticise the Malays and their Special rights as embodied in the Perlembagaan in public directly or indirectly, at will, is over with the formation of Perkasa.

So beware politicians especially from the BN, you have been given ample notice by Ibrahim Ali and PERKASA.

Friday, 25 June 2010

Education Ministry Must Immediately Focus on School Bullying before its too late

There is this well written article about bullying in Malaysian School published by UNICEF on 3 July 2007:

Violence in schools: Moving forward

By Professor Datin Noran Fauziah bt Yaakub and Dr. Goh Chee Leong

Schools have an important role to play in protecting children from violence. For many children, though, educational settings not only expose them to violence but may also teach them violence. They are exposed to corporal punishment, cruel and humiliating forms of psychological punishment, sexual and gender-based violence, as well as bullying. HELP University College’s Professor Datin Noran Fauziah bt. Yaakub and Dr. Goh Chee Leong share their thoughts on the impact of bullying on children and the urgent need to end violence in schools.

KUALA LUMPUR, 3 July 2007 - “Recent cases of school bullying have become a cause for concern in Malaysia. One of the more appalling incidents of bullying that stunned the nation was the brutal assault of a 16-year-old student by his school seniors in 2005 which led to his death. This case and others like it have raised public concern about violence in Malaysian schools. The Minister of Education has warned bullies, in a public statement, that strong action will be meted out against them and rightly declared that bullying was “not acceptable.”

“It is important to understand that bullying may not necessarily only take the form of physical violence. The more common and destructive form of bullying in Malaysian schools is psychological in nature. If ‘violence’ is defined as the intentional act of hurting another person, then non-physical bullying represents a form of emotional and social violence. Many societies tend to focus on physical bullying while ignoring and downplaying psychological forms of bullying. This is a dangerous and an irresponsible stance to take given that both forms of bullying lead to genuine suffering on the part of the victim.

Effects of bullying

“Emotionally, victims of bullying often suffer feelings of great distress and fear whenever they are in school. This makes it difficult for victims to engage in the process of education. The overwhelming fear victims experience can also lead to absenteeism from school in an attempt to escape the bullying.
“According to expert reports, victims of bullying often experience self doubt and a drop in self esteem. Many victims blame themselves for the bullying behavior, believing that it is their inherent weakness or incompetence that contributes to them being picked on by the bullies.

“Some victims of bullying harbor intense anger and bitterness towards bullies and the social cliques that condone and support bullying behavior. This anger, if unresolved, may lead to victims becoming bullies themselves with younger children, and are classified as bully-victims. Others may express their anger in anti-social behavior like vandalism and theft.

Resorting to suicidal ideas

“There are, of course, tragic cases in which victims of bullying come to the conclusion that the only way to stop their suffering is to end their lives. Research, has to this effect, indicated that there is a link between bullying and ideas of suicide.

“Bullying behavior also can affect a child’s learning experience. For meaningful education to occur, children must be given an environment that is perceived to be safe, physically, emotionally and intellectually. Only when children feel safe and secure, will they adopt an open attitude to knowledge, only then will they be willing to explore and thereby discover, and only then will they be willing to interact and engage with their teachers and peers. When children feel that they are under constant threat of being hurt and humiliated, they cannot fully realise their academic potential.

“Socially, children who are victims of bullying tend to be isolated from their peers. This could be due to the fact that their low self esteem may lead to a lack of confidence in making friends and socialising.

“In many cases, children who are bullied may lack the social skills to relate comfortably with other children. Often, victims of bullying are socially awkward to begin with, and this unease is made worse when they suffer from bullying. It is a vicious cycle that makes it difficult for victims to break out of and leads to them being deprived of quality peer interactions that are so important in their stage of development.

Enhancing the school community

“To effectively combat bully behaviour among students, there is indeed a great need to enhance overall school community and parents’ capacity to efficiently cope with bully and victim incidences.

“UNICEF in partnership with the Faculty of Behavioral Science at HELP University College and the Malaysian Ministry of Education has embarked on a project to introduce bullying interventions to schools in Malaysia. This intervention model is based on the Olweus School Intervention Model that has been successfully introduced in various parts of the world. This intervention meets the following needs:

•timely and effective interventions for victims of bully incidences;
•implementation of anti-bullying policy in schools;
•communicating clearly to students that bullying is not at all a permissible behaviour;
•training for students, parents and school staff to effectively deal with bullying behaviour among students; as well as training in areas of problem solving strategies and enhancement of social skills; and
•provision of accurate information and education for children, school staff, parents, and the public on what bullying is; its causes and effects; as well as steps of prevention and intervention.

Urgent need for awareness and action

“There is an urgent need for awareness among staff and students alike, that bullying in all its forms is not acceptable. A common belief among staff and students is that bullying incidence should be sorted out by the victims themselves. A common refrain is that the victim “should learn to stand up for themselves and fight back”, which is not always practical advice, especially when they are up against a large group of bullies.

“While teaching victims to respond in positive and constructive ways is part of the intervention, the program also focuses attention on how teachers, parents and bystanders can also play a role to create a physically and emotionally safe environment within the school.
“This pilot project will be completed at the end of 2007, at which time its efficacy will be evaluated. The hope is that if effective, it will be introduced at a national level to all schools in the country.”

....Did anything come out of the abovesaid report? I doubt so and sadly bullying continues to be a problem in our schools until now and yesterday a student from the Royal Military College was found dead and today five students has been detained for alleged bullying.

read the story from The Star here.

The Education Ministry besides focusing on the curriculum, the exams and the sports activities at school should consider having a task force in each school to curb this dangerous and aggressive unproductive bullying behaviour of irresponsible seniors against their juniors.

School Bullying must be stopped NOW.

Zaid Urges Anwar to Sack the Conspirators. Huh? Say What?

updated 26/6, 12:30hrs

Most interesting comment from Zaid Ibrahim on the purported PKR MP rebellion against the MB of Selangor, PKR's very own Khalid Ibrahim:

Excerpt from Free Malaysia Today:

Sack the conspirators, Zaid urges Anwar
FRI, 25 JUN 2010 16:46

By Stephanie Sta Maria
PETALING JAYA: PKR supreme council member Zaid Ibrahim believes that party de facto leader Anwar Ibrahim should sack the 15 MPs who are allegedly plotting a “Selangor rebellion”.

News broke of an alleged revolt against Menteri Besar Abdul Khalid Ibrahim by a group of 15 MPs aligned to PKR vice-president Azmin Ali, who recently resigned from the board of Selangor State Corporation on Wednesday. Azmin has denied any involvement in the alleged plot.

According to reports, the group is dissatisfied over the unilateral manner in which Khalid appointed his new political secretary, Faekah Hussin, as well as his inability to make quick decisions.

An exasperated Zaid, however, called the move “a blatant show of indiscipline” and criticised the 15 MPs' disrespect for authority.

“This issue of Khalid has been going on for over a year,” he said. “At the recent party congress, (party president) Dr Wan Azizah (Wan Ismail) clearly said that Khalid was not going to be removed and Anwar reaffirmed this statement. Once the top leaders have made a decision, the rest of the leadership are expected to follow suit.”
“It's not just Khalid who is on trial but the the credibility of the whole party leadership. If Anwar and Wan Azizah's words don't carry weight within PKR, then how can it mean anything to the rest of the world?”

Zaid observed that Anwar's leniency has encouraged brazenness among the leaders and called on him to start putting his foot down. He also expressed annoyance over the longstanding argument that a firmer stand would drive people to abandon ship.

“Let them jump!” he said. “Let them join (prime minister) Najib (Tun Razak), enjoy the two-thirds and do whatever they want. But PKR is a reform party that has to stick to certain principles and if that means settling for a small but committed pool of leaders, then so be it.”

continue your read here.

For a good background on the plot to oust MB Khalid Ibrahim read here.

I understand that Zaid likens himself to be a highly principled man in politics and despite heavy criticism on him personally from his own party and BN supporters, he sticks to his guns. I respect him for that and it does take a brave man to resign his post as a cabinet minister on a matter of principle.

However, urging Anwar to sack the 15 MPs who are allegedly ganging up against the Selangor MB is too much to ask of Anwar as that will leave PKR with only 12 MPs in Parliament. I see PKR is not about reform or a new dawn for Malaysia its all about making Anwar Ibrahim as the next Prime Minister of Malaysia and nothing else.

I believed if Zaid Ibrahim wants to help reform Malaysia he might want to try the DAP which would offer him a better more stable political platform and the DAP needs to soften its image of a single race party dominated by the father and the son anyway.

It seems that Khalid Ibrahim's MB position is very secure, so say Khir Toyo who believes Khalid is fully supported by the DAP who really pull the strings in the Selangor State Pakatan Government. I would agree with that Khalid seems totally at ease sitting or standing among DAP state legislators YB Kok, YB Liu etc.

read more here.

Wednesday, 23 June 2010

Rousing Speech by YB Wee - Pukul Keliling Semua

On 21 June 2010, in our Parliament, YB Wee Choo Keong gave a rousing and in my opinion a critical but constructive speech aimed at the Gomen and the Opposition Pakatan.

I think Malaysia needs more of this kind of quality critics by non Government Legislators aimed at putting the Government on their toes, instead of the normal almost daily diet of politicking by the Opposition Pakatan who are interested only in scoring political capital in their dream to occupy and control Putrajaya.

Syabas YB Wee and I hope to hear more classy, researched and constructive speech from the Independent Caucus YBs in Parliament.

Some Highlights/excerpts of YB Wee's Speech in Parliament on 21 June 2010:

1. Saya juga hairan bagaimana Pengerusi Sime Darby Tun Musa Hitam boleh membuat kenyataan bahawa Lembaga Pengarah nya tidak tahu menahu tentang kerugian yang dialami. Ini amat memalukan kerana Sime Darby adalah syarikat perladangan yang terbesar di dunia. Sepatutnya Sime Darby menjadi contoh kepada syarikat lain dalam tadbir urus atau Corporate Governance (dengan izin).

Ini bermakna Sime Darby Berhad mempunyai Lembaga Pengarah yang MATI PUCUK atau IMPOTENT (dengan izin). Ataupun Lembaga Pengarahnya masih tidur bersama dengan pentadbiran Tingkat 4.

Lembaga Pengarahnya hanya sedar tentang perkara tersebut apabila kerugian Sime Darby sudah mencecah hampir 2 billion ringgit, termasuk dalam projek Bakun. Ini amat memalukan bukan saja di Malaysia, malah di seluruh dunia, sebab Sime Darby mempunyai operasi di 20 negara.

........Dengan ini saya ingin mendesak Tun Musa Hitam dan keseluruhan Lembaga Pengarah Sime Darby meletakkan jawatan dengan serta merta.

2. Salah satu objektif dari RMK 10 adalah hasrat Kerajaan untuk menghapuskan rasuah. Tetapi apabila ada kes rasuah yang melibatkan kakitangan seseorang Menteri, tiada pula tindakan. Saya ingin memberikan satu contoh. Iaitu, Suruhanjaya Pencegahan Rasuah Malaysia (SPRM) telah menahan Encik Hasbie, Setiausaha Politik kepada bekas Menteri Kewangan Ke II, iaitu YB Tasek Gelugur, dan hasilnya SPRM telah menemui berpuluh-puluh juta ringgit di sebuah kondo di Pulau Pinang. Kita juga dimaklumkan beliau iaitu Orang Kena Tahan, turut memiliki beberapa buah kondo mewah.

YAB PM perlu memberi penjelasan kenapakah sehingga kini En Hasbie belum di dakwa di Mahkamah atau pun kes rasuah ini telah ditutup walaupun SPRM telah memperolehi bukti-bukti yang mencukupi dan juga adakah siasatan juga dijalankan terhadap bekas Menteri Kewangan II.

3. Apa rasional subsidi hendak ditarik semula sekarang, walhal itu sepatutnya langkah yang terkakhir! Sudah bertahun subsidi memberi menafaat kepada rakyat miskin dan kaya. Samada kita suka atau tidak, kita mempunyai peluang untuk memenafaatkan pertaruhan sukan. Mengapa kita perlu bertindak membuta tuli tanpa sebab dan gagal mengambil sesuatu yang positif daripadanya untuk kebajikan rakyat dan negara. Benarkan saya membuka mata dan telinga semua yang hadir di Dewan yang mulia ini berkaitan isu ini.


4. Saya tidak bersetuju dengan terma “menghalalkan judi bola” kerana kita adalah negara umat Islam. Sebaliknya saya usulkan supaya pertaruhan sukan diperlesenkan dan dikawalselia supaya ianya boleh dipantau dan dikawal. Dan apa juga duti dan cukai yang diperolehi boleh dimenafaatkan untuk pembangunan social saperti pemberian biasiswa, bantuan sarahidup bagi yang memerlukan, kemudahan kesihatan untuk rakyat miskin dan lain-lain, termasuklah menngunakannya untuk pembangunan sukan bolasepak agar pasukan Malaysia dapat mencapai persada antarabangsa dan membawa nama Malaysia ke tiap penjuru alam, sekaligus meningkatkan industri pelancungan negara.

Saya adalah seorang realistik. Dan saya nampak faedahnya pertaruhan sukan diperlesenkan dan dikawalselia didalam negara ini kerana menafaatnya jauh mengatasi keburukannya. Contohnya:

a. Pertaruhan secara hutang akan terhapus serta merta. Kerana pertaruhan dibuat secara tunai, para pemain akan berfikir banyak kali sebelum mengeluarkan wang tunai mereka sebelum bertaruh. Ini kerana mereka tahu daripada kehilangan wang tersebut, lebih baik mereka menggunakannya untuk makanan keluarga, atau membayar sewa atau ansuran kereta contohnya;

b. Kerajaan akan mendapat dana tambahan untuk membangunkan sukan bolasepak untuk kepentingan rakyat dan negara;

3. Kita akan dapat mengawal dan memantau kegiatan pertaruhan sukan daripada membiarkan ia menjadi kegiatan haram dan bawahtanah;

c. Kita akan dapat mengawal dan menghalang aliran keluar wang negara akibat pertaruhan yang dibuat dengan operator pertaruhan luarnegara;

d. Kita akan dapat menghalang pembiakan aktiviti haram dan tidak sihat dengan menghalang sindiket haram daripada memperkayakan diri mereka;

6. Kita juga dapat menghalang aliran wang negara ke negara lain kerana sindiket haram memerlukan ‘tempat selamat’ untuk menyimpan hasil mereka;

e. Kita juga akan mendapat dana tambahan untuk tujuan pembangunan sukan sekiranya pemegang lesen pertaruhan sukan saperti Tan Sri Vincent Tan, Pengerusi Ascot Sports yang berjanji untuk memberi sumbangan kepada satu yayaysan pembangunan sukan daripada hasil pendapatan syarikat beliau kelak;

f. Dan tidak lupa penambahan peluang pekerjaan untuk rakyat!

Akhir kalam, saya menyeru rakan Yang Berhormat semua supaya bersikap lebih realistik; dan berhenti daripada mempolitikkan isu ini dan bersikap hipokrit. Berilah kerjasama kepada Kerajaan untuk membawa aktiviti pertaruhan sukan ini ke arus perdana dan mengawal selia dan memantaunya untuk kepentingan dan kebajikan rakyat dan negara.

Saya sedar bahawa kini kita tiba-tiba mempunyai juara-juara sumbang yang kononnya menentang aktiviti pertaruhan ini saperti Ketua Pembangkang!

5. Apatah lagi jika Menteri Kewangan berani mengambil pendirian membenarkan kegiatan pertaruhan sukan, ianya sudah pasti akan dapat meringankan beban rakyat kerana Kerajaan tidak perlu mengenakan cukai-cukai baru untuk mendapatkan dana pembangunan. Kerajaan boleh melupakan hasrat melaksanakan GST, dan saya yakin rakyat akan berterima kasih kepada Kerajaan. Ya, saya menyatakan bahawa Menteri Kewangan bertindak bijak dan membenarkan aktiviti pertaruhan sukan yang terkawal dan diperlesenkan. Menteri Kewangan sepatutnya lebih realistik, apa juga pendirian beliau, aktiviti pertaruhan sukan sedang berlaku secara haram dan bawahtanah. Mengapa biarkan wang berbillion ringgit terbuang begitu sahaja, sedangkan dana tersebut boleh digunakan untuk kepentingan dan kebajikan rakyat dan negara.

6. Adalah tidak masuk akal untuk kita menghapuskan subsidi, tetapi diwaktu yang sama membenarkan sindiket haram judi sukan mengaut keuntungan yang banyak!!

7. Pertaruhan sukan yang diperlesenkan dan dikawalselia dengan peraturan akan membawa menafaat yang banyak kepada rakyat berbanding dengan keburukannya. Jadi marila kita bersama menyatakan “YA” kepada perlesenan pertaruhan sukan”. Saya mendesak Kerajaan supaya memberikan lesen sukan pertaruhan bukan sahaja kepada Ascot Sports tetapi sebaliknya hendaklah diujudkan sistem tendet terbuka untuk membolehkan syarikat lain juga turut serta kerana “the more the merrier” (dengan izin, lebih banyak syarikat lebih hasil yang akan diperolehi Kerajaan yang akhirnya akan memberi menafaat kepada rakyat dan negara.

Read the full speech here.

Monday, 21 June 2010

The continuing debate on the NEP, this time Millionaire Nazir Razak against Perkasa's Ibrahim Ali


Free speech is a wonderful thing isn't it;

Multimillionaire and CIMB head honcho Nazir Razak has this to say..excerpt from MI:

NEP punishes talented Malays too, says Nazir Razak
June 20, 2010

KUALA LUMPUR, June 20 — CIMB chief Datuk Seri Nazir Razak today repeated his call for a review of the New Economic Policy (NEP), adding that the policy has been unfair to the majority of Malays.

Nazir, who is also a younger brother to Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak, said the time has come for the government to protect the interest of the majority of the Malays and not just selected few.

“I have met a Malay professional overseas who refused to return to Malaysia because he is of the view that successful Malays are not welcomed in the country. This is because the Malays’ success is always linked to NEP,” said Nazir in an interview with Mingguan Malaysia published today.

“In fact some of them refused to return thinking that the NEP is not for them but only to selected Malay groups, so they are better off working overseas,” he said when asked if the new generation of Malays are more open to reviewing the policy.

read the rest

Definitely Nazir will have a lot of support from the more liberal malays and non malay politicians

This is what Ibrahim Ali MP and Perkasa Chief have to say..excerpt from MI:

Nazir is NEP product too, says Ibrahim Ali
By Adib Zalkapli June 21, 2010

KUALA LUMPUR, June 21 — Perkasa chief Datuk Ibrahim Ali rebuffed today Datuk Seri Nazir Razak’s criticisms of the New Economic Policy (NEP) by pointing out that the CIMB chief was also a product of affirmative action policies.

Speaking to The Malaysian Insider, the de facto leader of right-wing Malay groups fighting to maintain affirmative action policies as Bumiputera rights urged the prime minister’s brother to be fair in assessing pro-Bumiputera policies in Malaysia.

Yesterday, Nazir repeated his call for a review of the NEP, saying that the policy has been unfair to the majority of Malays.

Nazir, a younger brother to Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak, said the time had come for the government to protect the interest of the majority of the Malays and not just a selected few.

But the controversial Ibrahim said today that the CIMB chief too had benefited from the NEP.
“That was his personal opinion and I believe he is a product of the New Economic Policy,” said Ibrahim. “Bank Bumiputra, now known as CIMB, was a product of affirmative action policy,” he added.

“Everyone should look at what they have received so that they can be fair to others,” said Ibrahim.

read the rest

Ibrahim Ali also mentioned about a book written by Amy Chua - World On Fire: How Exporting Free Market Democracy Breeds Ethnic Hatred and Global Instability, so I decided to google a bit and came up with these review by the Guardian's Martin Jacques .

Excerpts of the said book review:

There is a plethora of books about globalisation, many saying roughly the same thing. This one is different. It is rare, indeed, to read a book about globalisation where ethnicity is at the core of the argument. That must have something to do with the fact that the great majority of authors of such books are white and from the west. The author of this book is a Chinese-Filipina. That is also surprising because, alas, there is little Chinese writing on ethnicity either. But this book is a gem. It is not that everything Amy Chua argues is correct - it is not - but her theme is different, rich and compelling.

Her starting point is that in many developing countries a small - often very small - ethnic minority enjoys hugely disproportionate economic power. As she points out, this is not true in the west: on the contrary, we are accustomed to small ethnic minorities occupying exactly the opposite situation, a very disadvantaged economic position. The classic case is southeast Asia, where the Chinese, usually a tiny proportion of the population, enjoy an overwhelmingly dominant economic position. In the Philippines, the Chinese account for 1% of the population and well over half the wealth. The same is true in varying degrees in Indonesia, Burma, Thailand, Laos, Malaysia and Vietnam.

As Chua argues, rich and powerful minorities attract resentment everywhere: but when those minorities are ethnically different - and highly visible - then that resentment can carry a dangerous charge. "In the Philippines, millions of Filipinos work for Chinese: almost no Chinese work for Filipinos. The Chinese dominate industry and commerce at every level ... all of the Philippines' billionaires are of Chinese descent. By contrast, all menial jobs ... are filled by Filipinos." There is very little social intermixing and virtually no intermarriage. And the disparities, Chua argues, have grown more acute with globalisation and western-inspired market reforms.

Southeast Asia is an acute but by no means isolated example. Throughout Latin America, a small white elite has traditionally enjoyed both economic and political power, as well as cultural and racial pre-eminence. However, while in east Asia anti-Chinese sentiment has long been a powerful political force, in Latin America, at least until recently, there has been little ethnic - as opposed to class - resentment against the white elite. The dominance of a small white elite has long existed in southern Africa. Although the black majority now enjoys - as do their counterparts in countries such as Indonesia and Malaysia - political power in South Africa, economic power remains firmly in the hands of a tiny white elite. In east Africa, that economic elite is largely Indian; in west Africa, it is often, though in a less extreme form, the Ibos. The picture that emerges is that in much (though not all) of the developing world, economic power is largely concentrated in the hands of - to use Chua's phrase - a "market-dominant" ethnic minority.

She argues that this disparity between the economic power of a small ethnic minority and the disadvantaged position of the majority ethnic group is a source of great political instability. Ethnicity, as we know, is potentially a highly combustible issue. "That ethnicity can be at once an artifact of human imagination and rooted in the dark recesses of history - fluid and manipulable yet important enough to kill for [Chua's aunt, who came from an extremely rich Chinese family in Manila, was murdered by her Filipino chauffeur with the complicity of her Filipina maids] - is what makes ethnic conflict so terrifyingly difficult to understand and contain." As Chua rightly argues, the mass killing of Tutsis by the Hutus in Rwanda in 1994 and the grievance felt by the Serbs towards the Croats in the Balkans were partly related to the economic advantage enjoyed by the Tutsis and Croats respectively, and the deep rifts that this engendered.....

Read the rest of the review here

Interesting how the debate on the NEP will finally end when the PM finally put his foot down and decide what is best for everybody in this country based on our ideals not based on western perception which does not recognise nor understand the complexities of Malaysia's history and the people here who will have to live through the policies set by the Government of the day.

I will try to get a copy of Amy Chua's book of course.

This is a great comment from Dato' Kadir Jasin dated 22 June 2010 from his blog titled Anak Tun Razak: Matlamat DEB Masih relevan...he agrees with Nazir and it seemed many misunderstood what Nazir has to say about the NEP recently.

A noteworthy post - Eyes Wide Shut by Hantulaut

My cybersifu, blogger Hantu Laut(HL) wrote a good critique for the powers that be, a few days back, entitled Eyes Wide Shut.

Some excerpts:

I have not cared to comment on the NEM (New Economic Model) since it was first announced as I feel it would be a waste of time as I do not have much faith that the government going to implement it as it is.

As it is they say "the road to hell is paved with good intentions." Najib may have the best of intentions but he would not be able to deliver what he promised. The pressure from inside UMNO would be too high and too risky for him to discontinue the traditional politics of patronage.

Many bloggers have put forward their views on the subject including our prolix and prolific blogger SakMongkol47 who has written a number of articles on the subject.One that draws my attention is his "Conspiracy of the rich"

Malaysian politics is all about money.Without money the BN would have done even worse in the March 2008 General Elections.What SakMongkol47 wrote of the big projects becoming preserve of the big guns is not far from the truth.I can't see any semblance of serious economic reforms in the 10 MP. Najib will be under pressure to keep rewarding the warlords in UMNO and other component parties.The money train, pardon me, the gravy train must continue to run along the same track.....

Read the rest here.

I think this is a very concerned post by a BN centric blogger who will call a spade a spade. I hope PM Najib find the time to read all these critiques of his BN Government especially those from among BN supporters who cares from their heart.

PM Najib has had a blessed poltical life coming back from the UK after his father Tun Razak died becoming youngest Menteri Besar of Pahang at 29 and has not looked back ever since until now where he is the Prime Minister of Malaysia. For all intent and purposes he was trained for the PM job but he really have to stop being too compromising in his approach to things, like HL, I agree that tough unpopular decisions necessary for the people and country to progress to developed nation status will have to be made. PM Najib should also listen less to the consultants but listen more to locals who have their ear firmly to the ground. PM Najib should not be too happy with the 72% popular rating, I thinks its just a drug.

I do not want to comment much on the NEM, besides not being an economist, I rather prefer to see what PM Najib's next moves will be in responding to the critiques from NGOs like Perkasa and others. I for one think that in its inception Najib's NEAC led by Amirsyam(here is Dato' Kadir Jasin comment on the NEAC Chairman) is not inclusive enough, it should have involved a whole spectrum of other experts including from the local acdemicia and also the opposition DAP and PAS who have knowledgeable economists in their midst as well, Tony Pua(DAP) and and Dr Dzulkefly Ahmad(PAS) and their team. It should above all be chaired by a experienced Malaysian with economics background, perhaps Ramon Navaratnam or even Ku Li or co-chaired by both. Well that is water under the bridge now and as it is the NEM is floating in mid air not here not there.

The difficulty with our Malaysia is that our mutiracial and multi-religious composition with very unbalanced wealth distribution depended too much on compromises for a decision to be accepted by all. For example the issue of subsidies, the Government had to backtrack and flip flop themselves to contain public dissatisfaction. Kita ini terlalu sangat dimanjakan oleh Gomen sebab nak panching undi kita selama berdekad-dekad, now we are like a small child throwing tantrums if things are taken away from us or we do not get what we want.

Same goes with the education system the one force that can unite us as a people moving towards developed nation status have to be compromised and the PPSMI were sacrificed on the altars of political expediency. We have not begun to talk about the "Satu Sekolah untuk Semua" idea.

I think we have a long way to go yet before we can be like Australia. Just a reminder from Albert Eistein maybe applicable to the powers that be ...."We cannot solve a problem using the same thinking that created the problem in the first place"

Friday, 18 June 2010

Batu By-election coming very soon..MCA better be prepared

updated - Batu Constituency voters breakdown

PKR MP Tian Chua's reduced sentencing by the High Court after being found guilty for biting a Police Officer on duty caught my attention, he was initially found guilty in a Magistrate Court and fined RM3,000 or six months jail.

The story from the Malaysianinsider here:

Poser over Tian Chua’s status as MP and RM2,000 fine enough to cost Tian Chua MP seat

Its not so much about Tian Chua's reduced sentencing to a fine of RM2000 that bothers me but the little bit that the High Court judge was reported to have said before he reduced the sentence that the punishment meted by the Magistrate Court would disqualify Tian Chua from his MP post and cause a By-election that will have both social and economic cost.

I have a problem here, can a Judge say these things in open court? I believed that sentencing of those found guilty of a crime should be based on facts/adduced evidence and the Law and not something that is outside the purview of the judge such as deciding on whether a by-election should be held or not held.

The reduced sentence would not help Tian Chua anyway as our Perlembagaan clearly state:

Federal Constitution

Disqualification for membership of Parliament

48. (1) Subject to the provisions of this Article, a person is
disqualified for being a member of either House of Parliament if—

(a) he is and has been found or declared to be of
unsound mind; or

(b) he is an undischarged bankrupt; or

(c) he holds an office of profit; or

(d) having been nominated for election to either House of
Parliament or to the Legislative Assembly of a State, or
having acted as election agent to a person so nominated,
he has failed to lodge any return of election expenses
required by law within the time and in the manner so
required; or

he has been convicted of an offence by a court of law
in the Federation (or, before Malaysia Day, in the territories
comprised in the State of Sabah or Sarawak or in Singapore)
and sentenced to imprisonment for a term of not less than
one year or to a fine of not less than two thousand ringgit
and has not received a free pardon;

(f) he has voluntarily acquired citizenship of, or exercised
rights of citizenship in, any country outside the Federation
or has made a declaration of allegiance to any country
outside the Federation.

read more of the
Perlembagaan in BI.

From the above, I think a by-election will have to be called as the Speaker of Parliament should now declare the Batu Parliamentary seat vacant based on the High Court conviction read together with Article 48(1)(e) of the Perlembagaan. Let us not talk about Tian Chua being pardoned lah..any body who bites a Police Officer should not get a pardon it sets a bad precedent ma.

According to wiki;

There are about 80,000 voters in Batu constituency with:

42% Malays,
41% Chinese,
15% Indians and
2% others.

PKR Tian Chua last won with a huge majority of 9,455 thumping BN Lim Pi Sin. If a by-election is called, a BN/MCA candidate should contest (Gerakan had their chance)....what a battle royale it will be, MCA's President first acid test, Datuk Chua Soi Lek will have his work cut out for him as I predict that PKR will probably field Dato' Chua Jui Meng. I think it will be a small miracle if BN wins in Batu though.

Thursday, 17 June 2010

Malaysia's Loss, Singapore's Gain..lets have Hassan replace Musa as Chairman of Sime Darby

I have always thought that the former Petronas Chief Hassan Merican at the peak age of 57, with his immense talent and high integrity is not ready for retirement, he should have been invited by PM Najib to do other work for Malaysia in another official capacity before he is enticed to go overseas where his exceptional managerial abilities are recognised. If Idris Jala formerly of Shell can be given a Minister's Post when he did not really performed that well in MAS, why can't Hassan Merican be recognised as such.

On 15 June 2010 events are moving for Hassan Merican when he accepted Temasek owned Sembcorp invitation to become independent Director, read here.

Sembcorp Industries is pleased to announce the appointment of Tan Sri Mohd Hassan Marican as independent director with effect from June 16, 2010.

The President & CEO of Petroliam Nasional Berhad (Petronas) from 1995 until his retirement in February 2010, Tan Sri Mohd Hassan Marican brings to the board over 30 years’ experience in audit, accounting and management. He currently serves as a Director of International Centre for Leadership in Finance.

Tan Sri Mohd Hassan Marican holds a Honorary Doctorate from the University of Malaya and is a Fellow member of the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales.

Before Hassan Merican finally decided to go overseas once and for all, I think PM Najib should now really look at the Sime Darby loss fiasco.

Have a real look at the Chairman and the Board of Directors and decide at least for now to replace Musa Hitam as Chairman and let Hassan Merican helm Sime Darby.

Its a given fact that PM Najib has nothing to lose but much to gain from Hassan Merican who is accepted by Malaysian of all races as the "few good men" of very high integrity who will as Chairman of the Board ensure that Sime Darby will at least be run as well or even better than Petronas had been.

Musa Hitam should be retired already, he has let us all down and should own up to his responsibility and retire with his head still held high.

recommended read:

Syed Akbar Ali .... Tun Musa Hitam: Be Gone
Another brick in the Wall..Musa Hitam: Foxing to stay on

Wednesday, 16 June 2010

DAP secret revealed: How they keep their Aduns and MPs in the party

While PAS make sure that their legislators swear an oath of loyalty that they will divorce their wife if ever they resign as MP or ADUN to join the other side read here. Apparently the DAP have a very well kept secret as to why their Adun or MP would not resign easily too, its not so much because of their fierce loyalty to the DAP though, the secret is revealed in the STAR today:

Published in the STAR : Wednesday June 16, 2010 MYT 1:15:00 PM

DAP to take Keshwinder and Hee to court


KUALA LUMPUR: DAP will take legal action against Malim Nawar state assemblyman Keshwinder Singh and Jelapang state assemblyman Hee Yit Foong for breach of contract.

Perak DAP chief Datuk Ngeh Koo Ham said the contract that was signed with the party after the March 8, 2008 general election required elected representatives to resign and pay a RM5mil compensation if they defected or left the party.

No wonder the DAP accused their legislators who resigned as taking money from the other side. What a convenient excuse, I supposed its got nothing to do with the fact that the DAP is in turmoil, fractionalised and some of them playing too much politics and not looking after their constituents as well as they should, eh?

Tuesday, 15 June 2010

After the "miracle" in Sibu comes the "miracle" in Malim Nawar..

Here is news from Bernama, bad news for DAP, great news for BN though:

Malim Nawar State Assemblyman Keshvinder Singh Quits DAP

KUALA LUMPUR, June 15 (Bernama) -- Malim Nawar state assemblyman Keshvinder Singh Kashmir Singh today announced his decision to quit DAP and declared his intention to become a BN friendly assemblyman for the benefit of his people.

Keshvinder who pledged his support for Perak Menteri Besar Datuk Seri Dr Zambry Kadir and Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak said he was disappointed with the DAP and Parti Keadilan Rakyat (PKR) leadership and their politicking because they had neglected their responsibilities and interest of the people.

Read the rest

I have always thought that after YB Hee quit DAP to become independent it will be an almost impossibility that another DAP Adun or MP would resign before the next GE such is their discipline and fierce loyalty to the party as compared to their other partner, the weak and direction-less PKR.

However, coming right after de-facto Opposition Leader's Uncle Lim tiresome and repetitive trumpeting of the so called "miracle" by-election win in Sibu where presumably DAP has rediscovered faith, Lo and behold another DAP Adun for Malim Nawar resigning today is indeed another "miracle" for the DAP. Hallelujah..Praise to God.

Can a murder suspect be the investigator,judge and jury?


Something I read from news portal:

Netanyahu: Gaza flotilla probe will show the world Israel acted lawfully

Israeli cabinet approves inquiry commission into raid on Gaza-bound aid flotilla in unanimous vote.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said at the start of Monday's cabinet meeting that the main goal of the Gaza flotilla probe is to prove to the world that the Israel Navy operation on the Gaza-bound aid ship was appropriate and met international standards.

"The government decision will make it clear to the world that Israel is acting legally, responsibly, and with complete transparency," said Netanyahu.
The cabinet approved the inquiry commission into the Gaza flotilla events in a unanimous vote. "It is not ideal, but the other options are less good,"

Read the rest at here.

My question is how could the murder suspects appoint themselves as investigator, judge and jury.

I think a nuclear bomb capable Israel with its arrogance and refusal to listen to the advise of its allies and friends is a danger to Middle East stability in particular and the world in General.


This is a superb article by Mr. Uri Avnery, founder of Gush Shalom (Peace Bloc) who has long advocated for a Palestinian state along side Israel:

Who Is Afraid of a Real Inquiry?

by Uri Avnery, June 14, 2010

If a real commission of inquiry had been set up (instead of the pathetic excuse for a commission), here are some of the questions it should have addressed:

1. What is the real aim of the Gaza Strip blockade?

2. If the aim is to prevent the flow of arms into the Strip, why are only 100 products allowed in (as compared to the more than 12,000 products in an average Israeli supermarket)?

3. Why is it forbidden to bring in chocolate, toys, writing material, and many kinds of fruits and vegetables (and why cinnamon but not coriander)?

4. What is the connection between the decision to forbid the import of construction materials for the replacement or repair of the thousands of buildings destroyed or damaged during the Cast Lead operation and the argument that they may serve Hamas for building bunkers – when more than enough materials for this purpose are brought into the Strip through the tunnels?

5. Is the real aim of the blockade to turn the lives of the 1.5 million human beings in the Strip into hell, in the hope of inducing them to overthrow the Hamas regime?
Since this has not happened, but – on the contrary – Hamas has become stronger during the three years of the blockade, did the government ever entertain second thoughts on this matter?

6. Has the blockade been imposed in the hope of freeing the captured Israeli soldier Gilad Shalit?

7. If so, has the blockade contributed anything to the realization of this aim, or has it been counterproductive?

8. Why does the Israeli government refuse to exchange Shalit for hundreds of Palestinian prisoners, when Hamas agrees to such a deal?

9. Is it true that the U.S. government has imposed a veto on the exchange of prisoners, on the grounds that it would strengthen Hamas?

10. Has there been any discussion in our government about fulfilling its undertaking in the Oslo agreement – to enable and encourage the development of the Gaza port – in a way that would prevent the passage of arms?

12. Why does the Israeli government declare again and again that the territorial waters of the Gaza Strip are part of Israel’s own territorial waters, and that ships entering them “infringe on Israeli sovereignty,” contrary to the fact that the Gaza Strip was never annexed to Israel and that Israel officially announced in 2006 that it had “separated” itself from it?

13. Why has the attorney general’s office declared that the peace activists captured on the high seas, who had no intention whatsoever of entering Israel, had “tried to enter Israel illegally,” and brought them before a judge for the extension of their arrest under the law that concerns “illegal entry into Israel”?

For the balance of 67 penetrating questions asked by Mr. Avnery read