Wednesday, October 22, 2008

A short primer to Malaysian politics

Having been an observer (and arguably participant) of the Malaysian political scene for some years now, I think I'm in a position to be able to describe that bizarre world to non Malaysians. Even jaded and learned students of politics elsewhere in the world might be in for a shock or two when they get acquainted with how the Malaysians think and act in regards to politics. Or perhaps can take a lot to surprise people in this cynical age.

Using the standard left wing-right wing model, let's start by talking about the people on Malaysia's left. In Malaysia, the left functions much as they do in US, or as they do in Europe for that matter--they're outright socialists that believe that Malaysia's ills can be solved if Malaysia becomes a lot more like Europe and adopt a cradle-to-grave welfare state, like France or Germany (or Canada). With the US election a mere two weeks away as of this writing, Malaysia's left-wingers are in the tank for Obama, and believe with all their hearts that the McCain-Palin ticket are agents of Satan or worse. This group is represented by the Malaysian political party DAP.

For an example of a Malaysian left-wing standard bearer, take this guy, Dr. Azly Rahman. He's a self-styled Malaysian leftie intellectual who loves to write (overly) long soliloquys on the evils of capitalism, or the evils of the US Military in Iraq, etc. etc. Educated in the hallowed left-leaning halls and high towers of Ivy League academia, Dr. Azly is, not surprisingly, a big fan of Obama and a regular contributor to Malaysia's powerhouse political blog, Malaysia Today.

Or consider this guy, 'Surind', a Malaysian blogger who is an ardent fan of that anti American dictator in Venezuela, and thinks Che Guevara (the guy who imprisoned, tortured and murdered people on behalf of his boss Castro before his fortunate early demise in the 1960s) was a really swell mensch. He also loves Obama. Surind and I agree on the need for a secular, non-religious government in Malaysia, but that's pretty much where our agreement begins and ends.

These bloggers from the left side of the Malaysian political scene devote a lot of thought, words and space in their writing to the alleged evil doings of corporations or globalization. At the same time, this crowd usually downplays or completely ignores the jihad and the ever-growing stack of dead bodies the jihadists are piling up. Or they apologize and rationalize for Islam after the fact. "Yes, Muslims can be barbarous," they might say, "but it's all because of Iraq-Islamophobia-Palestine (fill in the blank)." Oftentimes, Malaysia's political left can get quite chummy with their Muslim overlords. The DAP's chairman recently went on the record to say that, in effect, Islam is just a wonderful belief system.

Well, what about the Malaysian right wing? Well, we're going from one group of crazies to another group that in this case is actually more crazy. You see, the right wing of Malaysia's political sphere is part and parcel of the jihadist enterprise. Malaysians in this group scrawl Arabic all over their websites, drop 'SWTs' and 'PBUHs' all over their posts like there's no tomorrow, and generally believe with all of their hearts that Mohammed and Islam and Sharia and the rest of that fascistic ideology is God's gift to humanity. They may not be blowing people up in their backyards, at least not now. But they do attend mosques where the imams every Friday are shrieking 'Allah hates kafirs', and many of these same people eagerly send money ('zakat') to various jihadi causes abroad. And yes, a number of Malaysians run off to join the jihad directly. These jihadist elements are represented by the political party PAS.

With Marxists on one side and jihadists on the other, is there sanity in the Malaysian middle? Well, not really. The 'middle' ground is occupied by UMNO, the long-corrupt and long-ruling party, who take ideas from both sides and pass them off as their own. It's all in the name of 'racial harmony' of course. Any thorn or political opponent who can't be bought off or co-opted by these crooks is often thrown in prison via ISA or framed up and convicted on some sort of false charges. UMNO also uses thugs (RELA, UMNO Youth, Special Branch, etc) and a number of Orwellian laws (Sedition Act, Societies Act, etc.) to intimidate & silence critics and stay in charge.

So where does that leave the counterjihad in the Malaysia? The short answer is 'no where'-- Malaysia, with exception of a few renegades, has no counterjihad worthy of the name. There are a few websites here and there, but there is no organization and the numbers are tiny. The counterjihad belongs on neither side of that insane asylum known as Malaysian politics.


Anonymous said...

You're being kind to Azly Rahman. To be blunt, he's just a pompous windbag and intellectual lightweight whose modus operandi is to pinch important-sounding buzzwords and sayings from various sources and mash them together into some convoluted gibberish that he ejaculates into the faces of his fawning fans. As for his adoration of Great Leader Obama, it should not be a surprise at all, considering that he is in far-leftist Columbia, the alma mater of Obama, Obama's unrepentant Marxist terrorist pal Bill Ayers, and Obama's pal and Palestinian propagandist Edward Said.

Anonymous said...

put it this way he is "master of intellectual masturbation"

wits0 said...

Prof Azly Rahman is a pompous and bombastic windbag whose writing I can never bear to finish reading more than a para of. That he's so often carried by Lim Kit Siang's blog actually detracts quality from the later's blog.

A most ridiculous Bolehland product. Like some towering windbag.