You are currently browsing the category archive for the ‘politik’ category.
Kita selalu mendengar dan membaca perihal satu pihak menuduh satu pihak lain yang tidak mahu melaksanakan hudud. Tetapi kali ini pula satu pihak mengaku sendiri tidak mahu melaksanakan hudud ….
… hmmm … pelik pula.
Cuba tonton sendiri petikan rakaman video berikut yang saya rasa sumbernya sahih kerana diperakui sendiri pembicara siapa yang merakamkan video tersebut.
Cuba betul-betul teliti pada minit 0:55:
Nak laksana ke hudud ni?
DAN minit 0:58 - dijawabnya
Apa komen saudara/i?
Saya dengar esok ada demonstrasi BERSIH.
Habis sudah versi berangka kini mereka tukar versi berabjad.
Katanya ramai pengundi tidak puas hati.
Ahli akar umbi yang mendengar pun mengeluh.
Ini baru PRU Negeri P.A.S.
Belum lagi semua Negeri-negeri Jajahan P.R.
Mereka membawa tuntutan.
Tuntut ahli-ahli jawatankuasa yang mengendali pilihanraya mengundur.
Malukan PUOK KITO sahaja.
Kecewa dengan perjalanan SPR P.A.S.
Kecewa dengan kegagalan SPR P.A.S.
Baru nak kira seribu dua kertas undi …
Terpaksa dua kali tunda.
Semalam menunda pemilihan ahli Majlis Tertinggi.
Hari ini tidak boleh nak beri keputusan pemilihan Naib Presiden yang berlangsung semalam.
PAStikan peti-peti undi dikawal!
Jangan ada yang terlePAS memanipulasi keputusan
Jika tidak ahli akar umbi akan berhimpun membuat bulatan hijau.
Begitulah ramainya FBers yang petik pelbagai laporan media sedemikian untuk diletakkan di status FB mereka. Dan begitulah juga bicara ramai apabila bersembang hari ini. Begitu jugalah saya diajukan dengan berita tersebut tengah hari tadi.
Apabila saya sebut “sebenarnya ini bukan kali pertama … “, ramai mereka yang mempunyai “ketokohan” dalam bidang masing-masing ketika berbincang tadi terkejut.
Dalam masa 40 tahun kebelakangan ini sudah berbelas kali dah pun perkara sebegini berlaku. Tak tahu lama mana kali ini. Pernah 2-3 minggu lamanya ia ditutup.
Masalahnya mungkin ramai FBers yang muda-muda yang belum pernah baca atau terdedah dengan berita sebegini. Atau yang veteran-veteran pula mungkin dulu mereka tak ambil kisah dulu atau mereka sudah lupa.
Begitulah pengajaran yang perlu kita ambil dari sejarah dan peristiwa-peristiwa yang berlaku.
Generasi mudah kita sekarang adalah kebanyakannya dari generasi pasca 13Mei. Atau pun mereka hanya ingat peristiwa reformasi sebagai suatu yang “mendidik serta menyedarkan” mereka. Jauh sekali untuk mereka kenali perit bengit kehidupan zaman kekejaman komunis Bintang 3 mahupun zaman Jepun.
Maka bagi mereka itu semua tidaklah penting lagi kini. Itu orang dulu-dulu … tak payahlah nak cerita benda-benda lama …
Setiap yang berlaku dalam sejarah ada pengajarannya. Setiap yang menyelesainya ada hikmah dan kebijaksaan mereka yang bijak pandai ketika itu. Maka jangan kita terlalu mudah lupakan peristiwa lalu yang banyak iktibarnya.
KUALA LUMPUR 27 Jun (Utusan) – Bekas Naib Presiden Indonesia, Jusuf Kalla menyifatkan Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim sebagai pemimpin yang mempunyai imaginasi sangat melampau kerana masih ingin menjadi Perdana Menteri meskipun parti pimpinannya kalah dalam pilihan raya umum lalu.
Menurutnya, dalam satu pertemuan bersama Ketua Pembangkang tersebut selepas pengumuman keputusan pilihan raya, beliau telah memberitahu Anwar bahawa Malaysia mengamalkan sistem undi elektoral, yang mana parti menang akan membentuk kerajaan dan melantik Perdana Menteri.
“Malangnya, Anwar ego, imaginasinya sangat melampau-lampau, beliau tetap mahu jadi Perdana Menteri. Saya memberitahunya, kamu sudah gila? Mana mungkin menjadi Perdana Menteri sedangkan hanya menang 89 kerusi Parlimen walhal Najib (Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak) menang 133.
“Tolong beri saya jawapan atas dasar apa kamu boleh jadi Perdana Menteri kerana kamu sendiri tahu hanya menang 89 walhal Najib menang 133. Kami bertengkar dan akhirnya Anwar berfikir juga,” katanya seperti dipetik daripada portal berita Merdeka Online di http://merdeka-online.com/home/wawancara- penuh-jusuf-kalla/ baru-baru ini.
Mengulas lanjut, Jusuf mendedahkan, perhimpunan Blackout 505 yang digerakkan Penasihat Parti Keadilan Rakyat (PKR) itu dibiayai beberapa pihak, khususnya dari Turki, Washington, Amerika Syarikat; Filipina serta kemungkinan Thailand dan China.
Katanya, pemberi dana yang besar itu datang dari sebuah syarikat besar di Filipina dan Turki untuk membantu aktiviti perhimpunan bantahan tersebut.
“Mereka tidak boleh menyembunyikan diri kerana rakan-rakan bisnes kita ketahui siapa mereka. Isunya untuk apa membuat perhimpunan tersebut jika hanya memberi keuntungan kepada musuh-musuh Islam dan orang Melayu?
“Saya sendiri bertanya kepada Anwar, apakah kamu boleh mengawal parti DAP?. Anwar terdiam dan tidak dapat memberikan jawapan dengan jelas, ternyata beliau ada masalah untuk mengawal ahli-ahli Parlimen dari parti lain,” katanya.
Menurut Jusuf, beliau terfikir bahawa tindakan Anwar mengadakan perhimpunan haram itu hanya sia-sia, melainkan menguntungkan sebelah pihak iaitu musuh-musuh Islam.
Berhubung pencerobohan pengganas Kiram di Lahad Datu, Sabah, beliau berkata, terdapat campur tangan daripada pihak-pihak tertentu di Filipina, kawan-kawan Anwar seperti Joseph Estrada dan sebuah syarikat besar di negara itu yang memberikan sokongan kewangan dalam pencerobohan tersebut.
“Tujuan mereka satu sahaja iaitu untuk melemahkan kerajaan Malaysia. Mereka yang menceroboh itu mahu menunjukkan kepada dunia luar bahawa kerajaan Malaysia lemah dan gagal menangani isu tersebut,” katanya.
© Utusan Melayu (M) Bhd
Badr, whose movement has won organizational support from leftist and liberal parties, said: “We’re not looking for violence. We won’t allow it … We’re holding up a red card and blowing a whistle to tell Mursi to go. That is all.”
Macam biasa dengar je …
Bacalah keseluruhnya di sini, dipetik dari Reuters:
(Reuters) – Hearing their bright-eyed talk around a cafe table of a peaceful new Egyptian revolution, you might dismiss Mahmoud Badr and the other young instigators of a petition asking for a new president as hopeless dreamers.
Except they managed it once before – Cairo twentysomethings just like these, in their deck shoes and Tommy Hilfiger T-shirts, checking iPads and puffing on low-tar Marlboros over Turkish coffee, a few blocks from Tahrir Square.
In 2011 this generation, armed with Facebook, brought out Egyptians of all ages and backgrounds in protest and, to the world’s amazement, toppled the “Pharaoh” Hosni Mubarak.
Can they do it again? Can they get millions back into the streets from Sunday and force President Mohamed Mursi to step aside, perhaps with a nudge from the army? Can they end the Islamist rule which Badr and his friends feel has usurped their revolution after only two years.
Badr thinks so, even if he shakes his head occasionally in disbelief that what he started in a casual conversation with friends a couple of months ago has swelled into a mammoth petition, backing nationwide rallies from this coming Sunday, that has the president and his allies seriously worried.
“I have no doubt, from what we saw during the signature campaign and our ability to gather millions of signatures from people in no time, that we will succeed,” the 28-year-old newspaper and television journalist told Reuters.
“People will protest on June 30 and eventually we will force Mursi to do what we want. It is just a matter of time.”
Mursi, for whom Sunday will mark his first anniversary in office, has dismissed efforts to unseat him as undemocratic – a view broadly echoed by others, from the head of the army to Islamist former militants and the U.S. ambassador in Cairo.
Badr sits with colleagues from their nearby campaign offices in Groppi. A Cairo landmark, the cafe has seen its share of cultural ferment and political intrigue since colonial days. But its faded charms speak of stagnation and disappointment under Mubarak, ills the Arab Spring uprising has failed to remedy.
Frustration that Mursi’s Muslim Brotherhood was not offering reform, and that established opposition parties were getting nowhere after failing to win a series of elections, drove Badr to propose what seemed at first a naive idea.
“Why don’t we just rebel?” he recalled saying to friends one Sunday. Three days later, on May 1, they launched their campaign “Tamarud – Rebel!” – both Arabic and English, but a single idea.
Paying for printing out of their own pockets, Badr, whose father is a rights activist, and his friends and acquaintances fanned out on street corners. They asked people to sign a petition of “no confidence” in Mursi, calling for new elections.
“We adopted the idea of peaceful rebellion,” Badr said. “Our tools are paper and pens.”
Soon they were the talk of Egypt. About 12,000 people volunteered to gather signatures. This week they say they have over 15 million, all duly registered with voters’ ID numbers. While hard to verify, this figure is two million more than elected Mursi a year ago.
“We made people feel fantasy could become reality,” said Walid al-Masry, 26, an unemployed computer science graduate who helped set up Tamarud. “And because we really love what we do, and we mean it, people believed us.”
Egyptians well remember how a call on social media to gather on January 25, 2011 ended with Mubarak’s overthrow 18 days later, adding credibility to Tamarud’s hopes of a new beginning:
“June 30 is not something new,” Badr said. “It is the continuation of the January 25 revolution, to get it back on track. “But this time, we won’t give up before we see change.”
Whether disappointment with Mursi can be channeled into a coherent, elected administration is unclear. Similar calls by youth protest movements in the past two years have fizzled out.
Mursi’s Islamist supporters are staging their own shows of strength and the army has warned both sides to back away from violence. Badr, whose movement has won organizational support from leftist and liberal parties, said: “We’re not looking for violence. We won’t allow it … We’re holding up a red card and blowing a whistle to tell Mursi to go. That is all.”
They propose no one else. The president could run again, said Badr. He himself voted for Mursi in the run-off last year rather than back Mubarak’s last prime minister, the other candidate. In the first round, he backed a moderate Islamist.
The plan come Sunday is to put millions on the streets across Egypt – and keep them there, with donated food and tents.
The group foresees an interim government of technocrats and a joint military-civilian council running Egypt until elections. Badr said he might run for president himself one day, noting he will have to wait by law until he turns 40: “And why not?
“We want a free Egypt, an Egypt for all Egyptians including the Islamists,” he said. “A democratic Egypt governed by law.”
These are sentiments that Groppi’s dusty chandeliers have heard many times before over the past century. Are not Badr and his friends afraid for themselves if their campaign fails?
“Even if the government jails us or kills us,” said Badr, soft brown eyes shining over the rim of his coffee cup, “the idea will not die and others will follow our path.
“We believe this land is worth fighting and dying for.”
KUALA LUMPUR, 23 Mei (Bernama) — Kementerian Dalam Negeri (KDN) merampas 2,540 akhbar tabloid pembangkang dalam operasi di seluruh negara semalam kerana melanggar Akta Mesin Cetak dan Penerbitan (Pindaan) 2012.
KDN dalam kenyataan Khamis berkata sebanyak 1,408 tabloid Suara Keadilan, 1,062 tabloid Harakah dan 70 tabloid The Rocket dirampas.
Rampasan itu dibuat setelah KDN mendapati pihak tabloid berkenaan gagal mematuhi syarat-syarat ditetapkan di bawah akta itu iaitu kesalahan untuk mencetak, mengimport, menerbit akhbar tanpa permit dan tidak mematuhi syarat-syarat permit iaitu untuk edaran ahli sahaja seperti yang ditetapkan KDN.
“Operasi penguatkuasaan ini dijalankan di premis-premis yang menjual tabloid di seluruh negara pada 22 Mei dengan mengambil kira tindakan pemantauan dan teguran yang telah dilakukan oleh KDN sebelum ini,” kata kenyataan itu.
Kenyataan itu berkata operasi akan dilakukan secara berterusan bertujuan menguatkuasakan undang-undang di bawah akta berkenaan bagi memastikan semua pihak tidak melanggar akta itu.
To Anonymous, thank you for your comment ( Whither the Malays? and Wither the Malays – in http://anaksihamid.blogspot.com/ blog) which I reckon
requires an airing as a posting. Now and again I like to highlight an anonymous comment – especially when it is negative, and especially when it illuminates part of the problem. This one is a good example of the rather smug half-baked thinking that bedevils so much of our country’s political conversation, especially its ‘cyber-conversation’.
I struggle to find anything intelligible in what you wrote. You seem to think that the election results reflect a generation gap, which (according to you) is best described in the form of music tastes. Seems a bit simplistic to me. If that’s what you’re saying, you make my point perfectly about a dumbed-down generation.
If your obsession with pop music is silly in this context, your rabbiting on about the British National Party (BNP) is equally (and more dangerously) stupid. In particular, your attempt to characterize the Barisan Nasional as somehow akin to the BNP is a sick joke indeed. Especially so, given the nature of the opposition in this country – a squalid amalgamation of Chinese chauvinists, Muslim fundamentalists and a mainly Malay ’Alternative Party’ led by a proxy of US neo-cons and Zionists, who’s driven by the desire to lead the next Government in Putrajaya.
You clearly know very little about the British National Party. But at least the reference to it shows that you have read a few articles and can drop a few ‘useful’ names. But perhaps that’s all you wanted to do.
There is no doubt that some? many? Malays, especially today’s middle-aged middle class liberals have been spoilt - compared to the Chinese and Indians in the same economic league – and they do not appreciate this fact. They were hoisted and pushed and pampered as a result of UMNO’s NEP. Now they live in ‘gated’ communities, in glorified terrace and semi-detached ‘palaces’, drive macho 4WDs and continental cars and in turn cosset their beautiful children. My point is simple : too many of such Malays have forgotten who spoon-fed them, how they progressed on the backs of the Rakyat and how little they have ploughed back into the Malay community.
Some time ago I met this Malay post-grad student in Leicester and he said, ”From Form 1 in the Sekolah Asrama’ to my first degree in the United States and a post-graduate degree in UK, it was the Government (the Rakyat) that spooned the rice into my mouth”. At least he appreciated and recognized that privilege.
Your last paragraph is glib nonsense. ”The kids will be alright”?? Well, if this cut and paste opposition is your blue print for the future – to apply to all ‘kids’ in this country – then heaven help them. An uglier example of short term political opportunism would be hard to find – anywhere in the world. But certainly YOUR kids will be alright.
This is not about a gap between generations, between cultural groupings. This is a revival – with a vengeance - of the British-made, pre-Merdeka gulf between the well-heeled, well-serviced urbanites and the subsistence, hand-to-mouth ’Malayans’ on the urban fringes and in the boondocks.
Today, as for the Malays, it is the turn of the fat cats and the self-righteous in the United Malays National Organisation (UMNO), the People’s Justice Party (PKR), and the Pan-Malaysian Islamic Party (PAS) – each with their own agenda – to screw and manipulate the rights and security of others.
And by the way, it would be the liberal and right thing to do – especially given the nature of your comment – to have the courage of your convictions, and to give us your proper name, the name that your parents gave you.
[They are also the groups that helped with the Bersih demonstrations and violence in Malaysia]
WASHINGTON — Even as the United States poured billions of dollars into foreign military programs and anti-terrorism campaigns, a small core of American government-financed organizations were promoting democracy in authoritarian Arab states.
(source: http://www.nytimes.com - Published: April 14, 2011)
The money spent on these programs was minute compared with efforts led by the Pentagon. But as American officials and others look back at the uprisings of the Arab Spring, they are seeing that the United States’ democracy-building campaigns played a bigger role in fomenting protests than was previously known, with key leaders of the movements having been trained by the Americans in campaigning, organizing through new media tools and monitoring elections.
A number of the groups and individuals directly involved in the revolts and reforms sweeping the region, including the April 6 Youth Movement in Egypt, the Bahrain Center for Human Rights and grass-roots activists like Entsar Qadhi, a youth leader in Yemen, received training and financing from groups like the International Republican Institute, the National Democratic Institute and Freedom House, a nonprofit human rights organization based in Washington, according to interviews in recent weeks and American diplomatic cables obtained by WikiLeaks.
The work of these groups often provoked tensions between the United States and many Middle Eastern leaders, who frequently complained that their leadership was being undermined, according to the cables.
The Republican and Democratic institutes are loosely affiliated with the Republican and Democratic Parties. They were created by Congress and are financed through the National Endowment for Democracy, which was set up in 1983 to channel grants for promoting democracy in developing nations. The National Endowment receives about $100 million annually from Congress. Freedom House also gets the bulk of its money from the American government, mainly from the State Department.
No one doubts that the Arab uprisings are home grown, rather than resulting from “foreign influence,” as alleged by some Middle Eastern leaders.
“We didn’t fund them to start protests, but we did help support their development of skills and networking,” said Stephen McInerney, executive director of the Project on Middle East Democracy, a Washington-based advocacy and research group. “That training did play a role in what ultimately happened, but it was their revolution. We didn’t start it.”
Some Egyptian youth leaders attended a 2008 technology meeting in New York, where they were taught to use social networking and mobile technologies to promote democracy. Among those sponsoring the meeting were Facebook, Google, MTV, Columbia Law School and the State Department.
“We learned how to organize and build coalitions,” said Bashem Fathy, a founder of the youth movement that ultimately drove the Egyptian uprisings. Mr. Fathy, who attended training with Freedom House, said, “This certainly helped during the revolution.”
Ms. Qadhi, the Yemeni youth activist, attended American training sessions in Yemen.
“It helped me very much because I used to think that change only takes place by force and by weapons,” she said.
But now, she said, it is clear that results can be achieved with peaceful protests and other nonviolent means.
But some members of the activist groups complained in interviews that the United States was hypocritical for helping them at the same time that it was supporting the governments they sought to change.
“While we appreciated the training we received through the NGOs sponsored by the U.S. government, and it did help us in our struggles, we are also aware that the same government also trained the state security investigative service, which was responsible for the harassment and jailing of many of us,” said Mr. Fathy, the Egyptian activist.
Interviews with officials of the nongovernmental groups and a review of diplomatic cables obtained by WikiLeaks show that the democracy programs were constant sources of tension between the United States and many Arab governments.
The cables, in particular, show how leaders in the Middle East and North Africa viewed these groups with deep suspicion, and tried to weaken them. Today the work of these groups is among the reasons that governments in turmoil claim that Western meddling was behind the uprisings, with some officials noting that leaders like Ms. Qadhi were trained and financed by the United States.
Diplomatic cables report how American officials frequently assured skeptical governments that the training was aimed at reform, not promoting revolutions.
Last year, for example, a few months before national elections in Bahrain, officials there barred a representative of the National Democratic Institute from entering the country.
In Bahrain, officials worried that the group’s political training “disproportionately benefited the opposition,” according to a January 2010 cable.
In Yemen, where the United States has been spending millions on an anti-terrorism program, officials complained that American efforts to promote democracy amounted to “interference in internal Yemeni affairs.”
But nowhere was the opposition to the American groups stronger than in Egypt.
Egypt, whose government receives $1.5 billion annually in military and economic aid from the United States, viewed efforts to promote political change with deep suspicion, even outrage.
Hosni Mubarak, then Egypt’s president, was “deeply skeptical of the U.S. role in democracy promotion,” said a diplomatic cable from the United States Embassy in Cairo dated Oct. 9, 2007.
At one time the United States financed political reform groups by channeling money through the Egyptian government.
But in 2005, under a Bush administration initiative, local groups were given direct grants, much to the chagrin of Egyptian officials.
According to a September 2006 cable, Mahmoud Nayel, an official with the Egyptian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, complained to American Embassy officials about the United States government’s “arrogant tactics in promoting reform in Egypt.”
Gamal Mubarak, the former president’s son, is described in an Oct. 20, 2008, cable as “irritable about direct U.S. democracy and governance funding of Egyptian NGOs.”
The Egyptian government even appealed to groups like Freedom House to stop working with local political activists and human rights groups.
“They were constantly saying: ‘Why are you working with those groups, they are nothing. All they have are slogans,’ ” said Sherif Mansour, an Egyptian activist and a senior program officer for the Middle East and North Africa at Freedom House.
When their appeals to the United States government failed, the Egyptian authorities reacted by restricting the activities of the American nonprofit organizations.
Hotels that were to host training sessions were closed for renovations. Staff members of the groups were followed, and local activists were intimidated and jailed. State-owned newspapers accused activists of receiving money from American intelligence agencies.
Affiliating themselves with the American organizations may have tainted leaders within their own groups. According to one diplomatic cable, leaders of the April 6 Youth Movement in Egypt told the American Embassy in 2009 that some members of the group had accused Ahmed Maher, a leader of the January uprising, and other leaders of “treason” in a mock trial related to their association with Freedom House, which more militant members of the movement described as a “Zionist organization.”
A prominent blogger, according to a cable, threatened to post the information about the movement leaders’ links to Freedom House on his blog.
There is no evidence that this ever happened, and a later cable shows that the group ousted the members who were complaining about Mr. Maher and other leaders.
In the face of government opposition, some groups moved their training sessions to friendlier countries like Jordan or Morocco. They also sent activists to the United States for training.
(from Global Research, December 27, 2012, by Nile Bowie)
The opposition coalition, Pakatan Rakyat, is headed by Anwar Ibrahim, who once held the post of Deputy Prime Minister in Mahathir’s administration, but was sacked over major disagreements on how to steer Malaysia’s economy during the 1997 Asian financial crisis.
Today, the political climate in Malaysia is highly polarized and a sense of unpredictability looms over the nation. Malaysia’s current leader, Prime Minister Najib Razak, has pursued a reform-minded agenda by repealing authoritarian legislation of the past and dramatically loosening controls on expression and political pluralism introduced under Mahathir’s tenure. Najib has rolled back Malaysia’s Internal Security Act, which allowed for indefinite detention without trial, and has liberalized rules regarding the publication of books and newspapers. During Malaysia’s 2008 general elections, the ruling Barisan Nasional coalition experienced its worst result in decades, with the opposition Pakatan Rakyat coalition winning 82 parliamentary seats. For the first time, the ruling party was deprived of its two-thirds parliamentary majority, which is required to pass amendments to Malaysia’s Federal Constitution. In the run-up to elections scheduled to take place before an April 2013 deadline, figures from all sides of the political spectrum are asking questions about the opposition’s links to foreign-funders in Washington.
Protestors form a human chain in the city center of Kuala Lumpur during April 2012 protests in support of the Bersih coalition.
The question of foreign-funding
Malaysia’s former PM Dr. Mahathir Mohamad has long captured the ire of officials from Washington and Tel Aviv, and though he’s retired, he has channeled his energies into the Perdana Global Peace Foundation, which recently hosted an international conference in Kuala Lumpur calling for a new investigation into the events of 9/11 and has sought to investigate war crimes committed in Gaza, Iraq and Afghanistan. Mahathir has been an ardent critic of Israel and organizations such as AIPAC, and has recently accused US-based organizations the National Endowment for Democracy (NED) and the Open Society Institute (OSI) of holding a concealed intention to influence Malaysia’s domestic politics through the funding of local NGOs and groups directly linked to Anwar Ibrahim’s Pakatan Rakyat opposition coalition.
In an article the former prime minister published in the New Straits Times, a leading mainstream newspaper, Mahathir accuses financier George Soros and his organization, the Open Society Institute, of “promoting democracy” in Eastern Europe to pave the way for colonization by global finance capital. Mahathir acknowledges how OSI pumped millions into opposition movements and independent media in Hungary, Ukraine and Georgia under the guise of strengthening civil society, only to have like-minded individuals nominated by Soros’s own foundation come to power in those countries.
The former prime minister has also pointed to how Egypt (prior to Mohamad Morsi taking power) has cracked down on NGOs affiliated with NED, namely groups such as the National Democratic Institute, the International Republican Institute (IRI) and Freedom House, which are all recipients of funding from the US State Department. In Malaysia, high-profile NGOs and media outlets have admittedly received funding from OSI and satellite organizations of NED. Premesh Chandran, the CEO of the nation’s most prominent alternative media outlet, Malaysiakini, is a grantee of George Soros’s Open Society Foundations and launched the news organization with a $100,000 grant from the Bangkok-based Southeast Asian Press Alliance (SEAPA), another organization with dubious affiliations to the US State Department.
Malaysiakini has come under pressure from local journalists for the lack of transparency in its financial management and hesitance in revealing the value of its shares. Additionally, Suaram, an NGO promoting human rights, has borne heavy criticism over its funding and organizational structure. The Companies Commission of Malaysia launched investigations into Suara Inisiatif Sdn Bhd, a private company linked to Suaram, and found it to be a conduit for money being used to channel funds from NED. Suaram has been instrumental in legitimizing allegations of a possible cover-up of the murder of a Mongolian fashion model, Altantuya Shaaribuu, who was living in Malaysia in 2006 and associated with government officials that have been linked to a kickback scandal involving the government’s purchase of submarines from France. Senator Ezam Mohd Nor, himself a recipient of Suaram’s Human Rights Award, has accused the organization of employing poor research methods and attempting to disparage the government:
“Malaysians have the right to feel suspicious about them. They have been making personal allegations against the Prime Minister [Najib Razak] on the murder of Altantuya and many other cases without proof… their motive is very questionable especially when they are more inclined towards ridiculing and belittling the ruling government.”
The German Embassy in KL has reportedly admitted that it has provided funds to Suaram’s project in 2010. Malaysia’s Foreign Minister Anifah Aman followed by making strong statements to the German Ambassador and declared that Germany’s actions could be viewed as interference in the domestic affairs of a sovereign state.
Since 2007, Bersih, an association of NGOs calling itself the Coalition for Clean and Fair Elections, staged three street protests in which thousands of yellow-clad demonstrators took to the streets in Kuala Lumpur demanding electoral reform. After coming under heavy scrutiny for obfuscating funding sources, Bersih coalition leader Ambiga Sreenevasan admitted that her organization receives funding from the National Democratic Institute and the Open Society Institute. Sreenevasan herself has been the recipient of the US State Department’s Award for International Women of Courage, and was present in Washington DC in 2009 to receive the award directly from the hands of Michelle Obama and Secretary of State Hillary Clinton. While Sreenevasan’s organization claimed to be non-partisan and apolitical, members of Malaysia’s political opposition openly endorsed the movement, and some were even present at the demonstrations.
Anatomy of Malaysia’s political opposition
Malaysia is a multi-cultural and multi-religious state, and both the ruling and opposition parties attempt to represent the nation’s three largest ethnic groups. Approximately 60 per cent of Malaysians are either ethnic Malay or other indigenous groups and are mostly listed as Muslim, while another 25 per cent are ethnic Chinese who are predominantly Buddhist, with 7 per cent mostly Hindu Indian-Malaysians. The United Malays National Organization, the Malaysian Chinese Association, and the Malaysian Indian Congress head Barisan Nasional. The opposition, Pakatan Rakyat, currently controls four state governments and is led by Anwar Ibrahim’s Keadilan Rakyat, the Chinese-led Democratic Action Party (DAP), and staunchly Islamist Malaysian Islamic Party (PAS).
While a large percentage of urbanites with legitimate grievances are quick to acknowledge the government’s shortcomings, many are hesitant to back Anwar Ibrahim due to his connections with neo-conservative thinkers in Washington and general disunity within the opposition. Ibrahim maintains close ties with senior US officials and organizations such as the National Endowment for Democracy. In 2005, Ibrahim chaired the Washington-based Foundation for the Future, established and funded by the US Department of State at the behest of Elizabeth Cheney, the daughter of then-Vice President Dick Cheney, thanks in large part to his cozy relationship with Paul Wolfowitz.
While Ibrahim was on trial for allegedly engaging in sodomy with a male aide (something he was later acquitted of), Wolfowitz and former US Vice-President Al Gore authored a joint opinion piece in the Wall Street Journal in support of Ibrahim, while the Washington Post published an editorial calling for consequences that would affect Malaysia’s relations with Washington if Ibrahim was to be found guilty. Ibrahim enraged many when he stated that he would support policy to protect the security of Israel in an interview with the Wall Street Journal; this is particularly controversial in Malaysia, where support for Palestine is largely unanimous. Malaysian political scientist Dr. Chandra Muzaffar writes:
“It is obvious that by acknowledging the primacy of Israeli security, Anwar was sending a clear message to the deep state and to Tel Aviv and Washington that he is someone that they could trust. In contrast, the Najib government, in spite of its attempts to get closer to Washington, remains critical of Israeli aggression and intransigence. Najib has described the Israeli government as a ‘serial killer’ and a ‘gangster’”.
Members of Barisan Nasional have addressed Ibrahim’s connections to the National Endowment for Democracy in the Malaysian Parliament, including his participation in NED’s ‘Democracy Award’ event held in Washington DC in 2007. Independent journalists have uncovered letters written by Anwar Ibrahim, two of which were sent to NED President Carl Gershman in Washington DC that discussed sending an international election observer team to Malaysia and general issues related to electoral reform. A third letter was sent to George Soros, expressing interest in collaborating with an accountability firm headed by Ibrahim. Pakatan Rakyat’s Communications Director, Nik Nazmi Nik Ahmad, verified the authenticity of the documents. This should come as little surprise, as Ibrahim’s economic policies have historically aligned with institutions such as the IMF and World Bank, in contrast to Mahathir, whose protectionist economic policies opposed international financial institutions and allowed Malaysia to navigate and largely resurface from the 1997 Asian financial crisis unscathed.
An issue that concerns secular and non-Muslim Malaysian voters is the role of the Malaysian Islamic Party (PAS) as part of the opposition. In sharp contrast to the moderate brand of Islam preached by UMNO, the organization’s primary objective is the founding of an Islamic state. The PAS has spoken of working within the framework of Malaysia’s parliamentary democracy, but holds steadfast to implementing sharia law on a national scale, which would lead to confusing implications for Malaysia’s sizable non-Muslim population. The debate around the implementation of Islamic hudud penal code is something that other Pakatan Rakyat coalition members, such as figures in the Chinese-led Democratic Action Party, have been unable to agree on. The PAS enjoys support from rural Malay Muslims in conservative states such as Kedah, Kelantan and Terengganu in northern Malaysia, though they have very limited appeal to urbanites. While certain individuals in PAS have raised questions about NGOs receiving foreign funding, Mahathir has insinuated that PAS’s leadership has been largely complicit:
“They [foreign interests] want to topple the government through the demonstration and Nik Aziz [Spiritual leader of PAS] said it is permissible to bring down the government in this manner. They want to make Malaysia like Egypt, Tunisia, which were brought down through riots and now Syria…. when the government does not fall, they [Pakatan Rakyat] can appeal to the foreign power to help and bring down, even if it means using fire power.”
Despite claims of being non-partisan and unaffiliated with any political party, the country’s main opposition leader, Anwar Ibrahim, fully endorsed the Bersih movement.
Feasibility of ‘regime change’ narrative
It must be acknowledged that the current administration led by Prime Minister Najib Razak has made great strides toward improving relations with Washington. At a meeting with President Barack Obama in 2010, Najib offered Malaysia’s assistance to cooperate with the United States to engage the Muslim world; Najib also expressed willingness to deploy Malaysian aid personnel to Afghanistan, and allegedly agreed on the need to maintain a unified front on Iran’s nuclear program. Najib has employed a Washington-based public relations firm, APCO, to improve Malaysia’s image in the US and has seemingly embraced American economic leadership of the region through his support for the Trans-Pacific Partnership trade agreement. Some would argue that Najib is perhaps the most pro-American leader Malaysia has ever had – a stark contrast to the boldness of Mahathir. Despite Najib having good rapport with formal Western leaders, it is clear with whom the thank-tank policy architects, Zionist lobbies, and foundation fellows have placed their loyalties.
Sentiment among Malaysia’s youth and “pro-democracy” activists, who constitute a small but vocal minority, tend be entirely dismissive of the ‘regime change’ narrative, viewing it as pre-election diversionary rhetoric of the ruling party. While bogeymen of the Zionist variety are often invoked in Malaysian political discourse, it would be negligent to ignore the effects of Washington-sponsored ‘democracy promotion’ in the global context, which have in recent times cloaked mercenary elements and insurgents in the colors of freedom fighting, and successfully masked geopolitical restructuring and the ushering in of neo-liberal capitalism with the hip and fashionable vigor of ‘people power’ coups. As the United States continues to militarily increase its presence in the Pacific region in line with its strategic policy-shift to East Asia, policy makers in Washington would like to see compliant heads of state who will act to further American interests in the ASEAN region.
Let’s not ignore the elephant in the room; the real purpose of America’s resurgence of interest in the ASEAN bloc is to fortify the region as a counterweight against Beijing. The defense ministries of Malaysia and China held a landmark defense and security consultation in September 2012, in addition to frequent bilateral state visits and enhanced economic cooperation. It was the father of the current leader, Malaysia’s second Prime Minister Tun Abdul Razak, who made the landmark visit to Beijing to normalize relations in 1974, and under his son Najib, Sino-Malaysian relations and cooperation have never been better. Following the global economic crisis of 2008, Najib looked to Beijing to revive Malaysia’s export oriented economy, emphasizing increased Chinese investment into Malaysia and expanding the base of Sino-Malaysian trade in areas like education and student exchange, finance, infrastructure development, science and technology, yielding lucrative and mutually beneficial results. China has been Malaysia’s largest trade partner, with trade figures reaching US$90 billion in 2011; Malaysia is China’s largest trading partner among ASEAN nations.
In asking the question of regime change in Malaysia, Dr. Chandra Muzaffar reflects on Washington’s moves to bolster its military muscle and dominance over the Asia-Pacific region:
“Establishing a military base in Darwin [Australia], resurrecting the US’ military alliance with the Philippines, coaxing Japan to play a more overt military role in the region, instigating Vietnam to confront China over the Spratly Islands, and encouraging India to counterbalance Chinese power, are all part and parcel of the larger US agenda of encircling and containing China. In pursuing this agenda, the US wants reliable allies – not just friends – in Asia. In this regard, Malaysia is important because of its position as a littoral state with sovereign rights over the Straits of Malacca, which is one of China’s most critical supply routes that transports much of the oil and other materials vital for its economic development. Will the containment of China lead to a situation where the hegemon, determined to perpetuate its dominant power, seek to exercise control over the Straits in order to curb China’s ascendancy? Would a trusted ally in Kuala Lumpur facilitate such control? The current Malaysian leadership does not fit the bill.”
‘Backwards’ and forwards
Pakatan Rakyat, the main opposition coalition pitted against the ruling party, has yet to offer a fully coherent organizational program, and if the coalition ever came to power, the disunity of its component parties and their inability to agree on fundamental policies would be enough to conjure angrier, disenchanted youth back on to the streets, in larger numbers perhaps. What is ticklishly ironic about reading op-eds penned by the likes of Wolfowitz and Al Gore, and how they laud Malaysia as a progressive and moderate model Islamic state, is that they concurrently demonize its leadership and dismiss them authoritarian thugs. Surely, the ruling coalition has its shortcomings; the politicization of race and religion, noted cases of corrupt officials squandering funds, etc. – but far too few, especially those of the middle-class who benefit most from energy subsides, acknowledge the tremendous economic growth achieved under the current leadership and the success of their populist policies. Najib’s administration would do well to place greater emphasis on addressing the concerns of Malaysia’s minorities who view affirmative action policies given to Malay ethnicities as disproportionate; income status, not ethnicity, should be a deciding factor in who receives assistance. The current administration appears set to widen populist policies that make necessities affordable through subsides and continue to assist low-income earners with cash handouts.
Najib has acknowledged the need for broad reforms of Malaysia’s state-owned enterprises over concerns that crony capitalism may deter foreign investment; this should be rolled out concurrently with programs to foster more local entrepreneurship. To put it bluntly, the opposition lacks confidence from the business community and foreign investors; even the likes of JP Morgan have issued statements of concern over an opposition win. It should be noted that if Islamists ever wielded greater influence in Malaysia under an opposition coalition, one could imagine a sizable exodus of non-Muslim minorities and a subsequent flight of foreign capital, putting the nation’s economy in a fragile and fractured state. And yet, the United States has poured millions into ‘democracy promotion’ efforts to strengthen the influence of NGOs that distort realities and cast doubt over the government’s ability to be a coherent actor.
Malaysia does not have the kind of instability that warrants overt external intervention; backing regime-change efforts may only go so far as supporting dissidents and groups affiliated with Anwar Ibrahim. No matter the result of the upcoming elections, Najib appears to have played ball enough for Washington to remain more or less neutral. According to Bersih coalition leader Ambiga Sreenevasan, Malaysia’s electoral process is so restrictive that a mass movement like Bersih is required to purge the system of its backwardness. These are curious statements, considering that the opposition gained control of four out of 13 states in 2008, including Selangor, a key economic state with the highest GDP and most developed infrastructure. In response, Najib has adhered to Bersih’s demands and has called for electoral reform, forming a parliamentary select committee comprising members from both Pakatan Rakyat and Barisan Nasional. As elections loom, Bersih coalition leader Ambiga Sreenavasan is already dubbing them “the dirtiest elections ever seen” – unsurprising rhetoric from a woman being handed her talking points by the US embassy
Tony Cartalucci (Activist Post)
Wall Street and London’s hegemonic ambitions in Asia, centered around installing proxy regimes across Southeast Asia and using the supranational ASEAN bloc to encircle and contain China, suffered a serious blow this week when Western-proxy and Malaysian opposition leader Anwar Ibrahim’s party lost in general elections.
While Anwar Ibrahim’s opposition party, Pakatan Rakyat (PR) or “People’s Alliance,” attempted to run on an anti-corruption platform, its campaign instead resembled verbatim attempts by the West to subvert governments politically around the world, including most recently in Venezuela, and in Russia in 2012.
Just as in Russia where so-called “independent” election monitor GOLOS turned out to be fully funded by the US State Department through the National Endowment for Democracy (NED), Malaysia’s so-called election monitor, the Merdeka Center for Opinion Research, is likewise funded directly by the US through NED. Despite this, Western media outlets, in pursuit of promoting the Western-backed People’s Alliance, has repeatedly referred to Merdeka as “independent.”
The BBC in its article, “Malaysia election sees record turnout,” lays out the well-rehearsed cries of “stolen elections” used by the West to undermine the legitimacy of polls it fears its proxy candidates may lose – with the US-funded Merdeka Center cited in attempts to bolster these claims. Their foreign funding and compromised objectivity is never mentioned (emphasis added):
Allegations of election fraud surfaced before the election. Some of those who voted in advance told BBC News that indelible ink – supposed to last for days – easily washed off.
“The indelible ink can be washed off easily, with just water, in a few seconds,” one voter, Lo, told BBC News from Skudai.
Another voter wrote: “Marked with “indelible ink” and voted at 10:00. Have already cleaned off the ink by 12:00. If I was also registered under a different name and ID number at a neighbouring constituency, I would be able to vote again before 17:00!”
The opposition has also accused the government of funding flights for supporters to key states, which the government denies.
Independent pollster Merdeka Center has received unconfirmed reports of foreign nationals being given IDs and allowed to vote.
However, an election monitoring organization funded by a foreign government which openly seeks to remove the current ruling party from Malaysia in favor of long-time Wall Street servant Anwar Ibrahim is most certainly not “independent.”
The ties between Anwar Ibrahim’s “People’s Alliance” and the US State Department don’t end with the Merdeka Center, but continue into the opposition’s street movement, “Bersih.” Claiming to fight for “clean and fair” elections, Bersih in reality is a vehicle designed to mobilize street protests on behalf of Anwar’s opposition party. Bersih’s alleged leader, Ambiga Sreenevasan, has admitted herself that her organization has received cash directly from the United States via the National Endowment for Democracy’s National Democratic Institute (NDI), and convicted criminal George Soros’ Open Society.
The Malaysian Insider reported on June 27, 2011 that Bersih leader Ambiga Sreenevassan:
“…admitted to Bersih receiving some money from two US organisations — the National Democratic Institute (NDI) and Open Society Institute (OSI) — for other projects, which she stressed were unrelated to the July 9 march.”
A visit to the NDI website revealed indeed that funding and training had been provided by the US organization – before NDI took down the information and replaced it with a more benign version purged entirely of any mention of Bersih. For funding Ambiga claims is innocuous, the NDI’s rushed obfuscation of any ties to her organization suggests something far more sinister at play.
Photo: NDI’s website before taking down any mention to Malaysia’s Bersih movement. (click image to enlarge)
The substantial, yet carefully obfuscated support the West has lent Anwar should be of no surprise to those familiar with Anwar’s history. That Anwar Ibrahim himself was Chairman of the Development Committee of the World Bank and International Monetary Fund (IMF) in 1998, held lecturing positions at the School of Advanced International Studies at Johns Hopkins University, was a consultant to the World Bank, and a panelist at the Neo-Con lined National Endowment for Democracy’s “Democracy Award” and a panelist at a NED donation ceremony - the very same US organization funding and supporting Bersih and so-called “independent” election monitor Merdeka – paints a picture of an opposition running for office in Malaysia, not for the Malaysian people, but clearly for the corporate financier interests of Wall Street and London.
Photo: Taken from the US National Endowment for Democracy’s 2007 Democracy Award eventheld in Washington D.C., Anwar Ibrahim can be seen to the far left and participated as a “panelist.” It is no surprise that NED is now subsidizing his bid to worm his way back into power in Malaysia. (click image to enlarge)
In reality, Bersih’s leadership along with Anwar and their host of foreign sponsors are attempting to galvanize the very real grievances of the Malaysian people and exploit them to propel themselves into power. While many may be tempted to suggest that “clean and fair elections” truly are Bersih and Anwar’s goal, and that US funding via NED’s NDI and convicted criminal, billionaire bankster George Soros’ Open Society are entirely innocuous, a thorough examination of these organizations, how they operate, and their admitted agenda reveals the proverbial cliff Anwar and Bersih are leading their followers and the nation of Malaysia over.
As Bersih predictably mobilizes in the streets on behalf of Anwar’s opposition party in the wake of their collective failure during Malaysia’s 2013 general elections, it is important for Malaysians to understand the true nature of the Western organizations funding their attempts to politically undermine the ruling party and divide Malaysians against each other, and exactly why this is being done in the greater context of US hegemony in Asia.
Anwar & Bersih’s US State Department Backers
The US State Department’s NED and NDI are most certainly not benevolent promoters of democracy and freedom. A quick look at NED’s board of directors reveals a milieu of corporate-fascists and warmongers:
- William Galston: Brookings Institution (board of trustees can be found on page 35 here).
- Moises Naim: Carnegie Endowment for International Peace (corporate funding here).
- Robert Miller: corporate lawyer.
- Larry Liebenow: US Chamber of Commerce (a chief proponent of SOPA, ACTA, and CISPA), Center for International Private Enterprise (CIPE).
- Anne-Marie Slaughter: US State Department, Council on Foreign Relations (corporate members here), director of Citigroup, McDonald’s Corporation, and Political Strategies Advisory Group.
- Richard Gephardt: US Representative, Boeing lobbyist, Goldman Sachs, Visa, Ameren Corp, and Waste Management Inc lobbyist, corporate consultant, consultant &now director of Ford Motor Company, supporter of the military invasion and occupation of Iraq in 2003.
- Marilyn Carlson Nelson: CEO of Carlson, director of Exxon Mobil.
- Stephen Sestanovich: US State Department, Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, CFR.
- Judy Shelton: director of Hilton Hotels Corporation & Atlantic Coast Airlines.
- Francis Fukuyama: Neo-Con, pro-war, pro-hegmonic PNAC signatory
- Zalmay Khalilzad: Neo-Con, pro-war, pro-hegmonic PNAC signatory
- Will Marshall: Neo-Con, pro-war, pro-hegmonic PNAC signatory
- Vin Weber: Neo-Con, pro-war, pro-hegmonic PNAC signatory
The NDI, which Bersih leader Ambiga Sreenevasan herself admits funds her organization, is likewise chaired by an unsavory collection of corporate fascist interests.
- Robin Carnahan: Formally of the Export-Import Bank of the United States where she “explored innovative ways to help American companies increase their sale of goods and services abroad.” The NDI’s meddling in foreign nations, particularly in elections on behalf of pro-West candidates favoring free-trade, and Carnahan’s previous ties to a bank that sought to expand corporate interests overseas constitutes an alarming conflict of interests.
- Richard Blum: An investment banker with Blum Capital, CB Richard Ellis. Engaged in war profiteering along side the Neo-Con infested Carlyle Group, when both acquired shares in EG&G which was then awarded a $600 million military contract during the opening phases of the Iraq invasion.
- Bernard W. Aronson: Founder of ACON Investments. Prior to that, he was an adviser to Goldman Sachs, and serves on the boards of directors of Fifth & Pacific Companies, Royal Caribbean International, Hyatt Hotels Corporation, and Chroma Oil & Gas, Northern Tier Energy. Aronson is also a member of the Council on Foreign Relations (CFR) which in turn represents the collective interests of some of the largest corporations on Earth.
- Sam Gejdenson: NDI’s profile claims Gejdenson is “in charge of” Sam Gejdenson International, which proclaims on its website ”Commerce Without Borders,” or in other words, big-business monopolies via free-trade. In his autobiographical profile, he claims to have promoted US exports as a Democrat on the House International Relations Committee. Here is yet another case of conflicting interests between NDI’s meddling in foreign politics and board members previously involved in “promoting US exports.”
- Nancy H. Rubin: CFR member.
- Vali Nasr: CFR member and a senior fellow at the big-oil, big-banker Belfer Center at Harvard.
- Rich Verma: A partner in the Washington office of Steptoe & Johnson LLP - an international corporate and governmental legal firm representing for Verma, a multitude of conflicting interests and potential improprieties. Setptoe & Johnson is active in many of the nations the NDI is operating in, opening the door for manipulation on both sides to favor the other.
- Lynda Thomas: A private investor, formally a senior manager/CPA at Deloitte Haskins & Sells in New York, and Coopers & Lybrand Deloitte in London. Among her clients were international banks.
- Maurice Tempelsman: Chairman of the board of directors of Lazare Kaplan International Inc., the largest cutter and polisher of “ideal cut” diamonds in the United States. Also senior partner at Leon Tempelsman & Son, involved in mining, investments and business development and minerals trading in Europe, Russia, Africa, Latin America, Canada and Asia. Yet another immense potential for conflicting interests, where Tempelsman stands to directly gain financially and politically by manipulating foreign governments via the NDI.
- Elaine K. Shocas: President of Madeleine Albright, Inc., a private investment firm. She was chief of staff to the U.S. Department of State and the U.S. Mission to the United Nations during Madeleine Albright’s tenure as Secretary of State and Ambassador to the United Nation, illustrating a particularly dizzying “revolving door” between big-government and big-business.
- Madeleine K. Albright: Chair of Albright Stonebridge Group and Chair of Albright Capital Management LLC, an investment advisory firm – directly affiliated with fellow NDI board member Elaine Shocas, representing an incestuous business/government relationship with overt conflicts of interest. Albright infamously stated that sanctions against Iraq which directly led to the starvation and death of half a million children “was worth it.”
The average Malaysian, disenfranchised with the ruling government as they may be, cannot possibly believe these people are funding and propping up clearly disingenuous NGOs in direct support of a compromised Anwar Ibrahim, for the best interests of Malaysia.
The end game for the US with an Anwar Ibrahim/People’s Alliance-led government, is a Malaysia that capitulates to both US free trade schemes and US foreign policy. In Malaysia’s case, this will leave the extensive economic independence achieved since escaping out from under British rule, gutted, while the nation’s resources are steered away from domestic development and toward a proxy confrontation with China, just as is already being done in Korea, Japan, and the Philippines.
Stitching ASEAN Together with Proxy Regimes to Fight China
Image: Lemuel Gulliver on the island of Lilliput, having been overtaken while asleep by ropes and stakes by the diminutive but numerous Lilliputians. Western corporate-financier interests envision organizing Southeast Asia into a supranational bloc, ASEAN (Association of Southeast Asian Nations), to use the smaller nations as a combined front to “tie down” China in a similar manner. Unlike in the story “Gulliver’s Travels,” China may well break free of its binds and stomp the Lilliputian leaders flat for their belligerence.
That the US goal is to use Malaysia and other Southeast Asian nations against China is not merely speculation. It is the foundation of a long-documented conspiracy dating back as far as 1997, and reaffirmed by US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton as recently as 2011.
In 1997, Fortune 500-funded (page 19) Brookings Institution policy scribe Robert Kagan penned, “What China Knows That We Don’t: The Case for a New Strategy of Containment,” which spells out the policy Wall Street and London were already in the process of implementing even then, albeit in a somewhat more nebulous manner. In his essay, Kagan literally states (emphasis added):
The present world order serves the needs of the United States and its allies, which constructed it. And it is poorly suited to the needs of a Chinese dictatorship trying to maintain power at home and increase its clout abroad. Chinese leaders chafe at the constraints on them and worry that they must change the rules of the international system before the international system changes them.
Here, Kagan openly admits that the “world order,” or the “international order,” is simply American-run global hegemony, dictated by US interests. These interests, it should be kept in mind, are not those of the American people, but of the immense corporate-financier interests of the Anglo-American establishment. Kagan continues (emphasis added):
In truth, the debate over whether we should or should not contain China is a bit silly. We are already containing China — not always consciously and not entirely successfully, but enough to annoy Chinese leaders and be an obstacle to their ambitions. When the Chinese used military maneuvers and ballistic-missile tests last March to intimidate Taiwanese voters, the United States responded by sending the Seventh Fleet. By this show of force, the U.S. demonstrated to Taiwan, Japan, and the rest of our Asian allies that our role as their defender in the region had not diminished as much as they might have feared. Thus, in response to a single Chinese exercise of muscle, the links of containment became visible and were tightened.
The new China hands insist that the United States needs to explain to the Chinese that its goal is merely, as [Robert] Zoellick writes, to avoid “the domination of East Asia by any power or group of powers hostile to the United States.” Our treaties with Japan, South Korea, the Philippines, Thailand, and Australia, and our naval and military forces in the region, aim only at regional stability, not aggressive encirclement.
But the Chinese understand U.S. interests perfectly well, perhaps better than we do. While they welcome the U.S. presence as a check on Japan, the nation they fear most, they can see clearly that America’s military and diplomatic efforts in the region severely limit their own ability to become the region’s hegemon. According to Thomas J. Christensen, who spent several months interviewing Chinese military and civilian government analysts, Chinese leaders worry that they will “play Gulliver to Southeast Asia’s Lilliputians, with the United States supplying the rope and stakes.”
Indeed, the United States blocks Chinese ambitions merely by supporting what we like to call “international norms” of behavior. Christensen points out that Chinese strategic thinkers consider “complaints about China’s violations of international norms” to be part of “an integrated Western strategy, led by Washington, to prevent China from becoming a great power.
What Kagan is talking about is maintaining American preeminence across all of Asia and producing a strategy of tension to divide and limit the power of any single player vis-a-vis Wall Street and London’s hegemony. Kagan would continue (emphasis added):
The changes in the external and internal behavior of the Soviet Union in the late 1980s resulted at least in part from an American strategy that might be called “integration through containment and pressure for change.”
Such a strategy needs to be applied to China today. As long as China maintains its present form of government, it cannot be peacefully integrated into the international order. For China’s current leaders, it is too risky to play by our rules — yet our unwillingness to force them to play by our rules is too risky for the health of the international order. The United States cannot and should not be willing to upset the international order in the mistaken belief that accommodation is the best way to avoid a confrontation with China.
We should hold the line instead and work for political change in Beijing. That means strengthening our military capabilities in the region, improving our security ties with friends and allies, and making clear that we will respond, with force if necessary, when China uses military intimidation or aggression to achieve its regional ambitions. It also means not trading with the Chinese military or doing business with firms the military owns or operates. And it means imposing stiff sanctions when we catch China engaging in nuclear proliferation.
A successful containment strategy will require increasing, not decreasing, our overall defense capabilities. Eyre Crowe warned in 1907 that “the more we talk of the necessity of economising on our armaments, the more firmly will the Germans believe that we are tiring of the struggle, and that they will win by going on.” Today, the perception of our military decline is already shaping Chinese calculations. In 1992, an internal Chinese government document said that America’s “strength is in relative decline and that there are limits to what it can do.” This perception needs to be dispelled as quickly as possible.
Kagan’s talk of “responding” to China’s expansion is clearly manifested today in a series of proxy conflicts growing between US-backed Japan, and the US-backed Philippines, and to a lesser extent between North and South Korea, and even beginning to show in Myanmar. The governments of these nations have capitulated to US interests and their eagerness to play the role of America’s proxies in the region, even at their own cost, is not a surprise. To expand this, however, the US fully plans on integrating Southeast Asia, installing proxy regimes, and likewise turning their resources and people against China.
In 2011, then Secretary of State Hillary Clinton unveiled the capstone to Kagan’s 1997 conspiracy. She published in Foreign Policy magazine, a piece titled, “America’s Pacific Century” where she explicitly states:
In the next 10 years, we need to be smart and systematic about where we invest time and energy, so that we put ourselves in the best position to sustain our leadership, secure our interests, and advance our values. One of the most important tasks of American statecraft over the next decade will therefore be to lock in a substantially increased investment — diplomatic, economic, strategic, and otherwise — in the Asia-Pacific region.
To “sustain our leadership,” “secure our interests,” and “advance our values,” are clearly hegemonic statements, and indicates that the US’ goal for “substantially increased investment,” including buying off NGOs and opposition parties in Malaysia, seeks to directly serve US leadership, interests, and “values,” not within US borders, but outside them, and specifically across all of Asia.
At a time when the region is building a more mature security and economic architecture to promote stability and prosperity, U.S. commitment there is essential. It will help build that architecture and pay dividends for continued American leadership well into this century, just as our post-World War II commitment to building a comprehensive and lasting transatlantic network of institutions and relationships has paid off many times over — and continues to do so.
The “architecture” referred to is the supranational ASEAN bloc – and again Clinton confirms that the US’ commitment to this process is designed not to lift up Asia, but to maintain its own hegemony across the region, and around the world.
Clinton then openly admits that the US seeks to exploit Asia’s economic growth:
Harnessing Asia’s growth and dynamism is central to American economic and strategic interests and a key priority for President Obama. Open markets in Asia provide the United States with unprecedented opportunities for investment, trade, and access to cutting-edge technology. Our economic recovery at home will depend on exports and the ability of American firms to tap into the vast and growing consumer base of Asia.
Of course, the purpose of an economy is to meet the needs of those who live within it. The Asian economy therefore ought to serve the needs and interests of Asians – not a hegemonic empire on the other side of the Pacific. Clinton’s piece could easily double as a declaration by England’s King George and his intentions toward emptying out the New World.
And no empire is complete without establishing a permanent military garrison on newly claimed territory. Clinton explains (emphasis added):
With this in mind, our work will proceed along six key lines of action: strengthening bilateral security alliances; deepening our working relationships with emerging powers, including with China; engaging with regional multilateral institutions; expanding trade and investment; forging a broad-based military presence; and advancing democracy and human rights.
And of course, by “advancing democracy and human rights,” Clinton means the continuation of funding faux-NGOs that disingenuously leverage human rights and democracy promotion to politically undermine targeted governments in pursuit of installing more obedient proxy regimes.
The piece is lengthy, and while a lot of readers may be tempted to gloss over some of the uglier, overtly imperial aspects of Clinton’s statement, the proof of America’s true intentions in Asia can be seen clearly manifested today, with the intentional encouragement of provocations between North and South Korea, an expanding confrontation between China and US proxies, Japan and the Philippines, and with mobs taking to the streets in Malaysia in hopes of overturning an election US-proxy Anwar Ibrahim had no chance of winning.
Clean and Fair Elections?
While the battle cry for Anwar Ibrahim, his People’s Alliance, and Bersih have been “clean and fair elections,” in reality, allegations of fraud began long before the elections even started. This was not because Anwar’s opposition party had evidence of such fraud – instead, this was to implant the idea into people’s minds long before the elections, deeply enough to justify claims of stolen elections no matter how the polls eventually turned out.
At one point during the elections, before ballots were even counted, Anwar Ibrahim declared victory - a move that analysts across the region noted was provocative, dangerous, and incredibly irresponsible. Again, there could not have been any evidence that Anwar won, because ballots had not yet been counted. It was again a move meant to manipulate the public and set the stage for contesting Anwar’s inevitable loss – in the streets with mobs and chaos in typical Western-backed color revolution style.
One must seriously ask themselves, considering Anwar’s foreign backers, those backers’ own stated intentions for Asia, and Anwar’s irresponsible, baseless claims before, during, and after the elections – what is “clean and fair” about any of this?
Anwar Ibrahim is a fraud, an overt proxy of foreign interests. His satellite NGOs, including the insidious Bersih movement openly funded by foreign corporate-financier interests, and the equally insidious polling NGO Merdeka who portrays itself as “independent” despite being funded directly by a foreign government, are likewise frauds – drawing in well-intentioned people through slick marketing, just as cigarette companies do.
And like cigarette companies who sell what is for millions essentially a slow, painful, humiliating death sentence that will leave one broken financially and spiritually before ultimately outright killing them, Anwar’s US-backed opposition is also selling Malaysia a slow, painful, humiliating death. Unfortunately, also like cigarettes, well-intentioned but impressionable people have not gathered all of the facts, and have instead have based their support on only the marketing, gimmicks, slogans, and tricks of a well-oiled, manipulative political machine.
For that folly, Malaysia may pay a heavy price one day – but for Anwar and his opposition party today, they have lost the elections, and the cheap veneer of America’s “democracy promotion” racket is quickly peeling away. For now, America has tripped in mid-pivot toward its hegemonic agenda in Asia, with Malaysia’s ruling government providing a model for other nations in the region to follow, should they be interested in sovereignty and independent progress – no matter how flawed or slow it may be.
Tony Cartalucci’s articles have appeared on many alternative media websites, including his own at
Land Destroyer Report, Alternative Thai News Network and LocalOrg. Read other contributed articles by Tony Cartalucci here.