I really do not know who is writing all those articles for Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad’s Blog (although I can guess) but yet again his latest piece two days ago, DEMOKRASI DAN NAJIB, is full of distorted facts and misinformation. I can only assume that the author is either a barefaced liar or bloody ignorant regarding history.
Mahathir, as usual, goes through the history of why Umno was founded 70 years ago back in 1946. However, each time he tells this story he changes it to suit the occasion. And I have attended many a function where Mahathir tells different versions of this story to suit the audience he is talking to.
After WWII, the British decided to merge the Straits Settlements, the Federated Malay States and the Unfederated Malay States into the United States of Malaya. And they called this United States of Malaya the Malayan Union and the state Rulers were made to sign the document.
Mahathir likes to tell the story about how the Rulers betrayed the country and sold out the Malays by agreeing to the Malayan Union. The truth is Sir Harold MacMichael lied to the Rulers and made the Rulers agree to the Malayan Union and sign the document under false pretences. (That was why at that time when you tried to con someone the person would say, “Jangan cuba MacMichael aku.”)
Some of the more educated Malays (which was a rare commodity back in 1946, even amongst the elite or ruling class) realised what the Malayan Union would mean so they opposed it. The elite Malays or those courtiers and members of the royal family came out to protest and demonstrated against the Malayan Union.
The Sultan of Johor then formed Umno, an amalgamation or many Malay movements, unions, societies, associations, etc., from all over the country into one national body — a united Malay national organisation (which is how the acronym UMNO came into being). For the first time hundreds of Malay groupings came under one umbrella.
So, Mahathir’s opening statement in his Blog posting itself is false. Umno was NOT formed to fight for and to uphold democracy. It was formed to fight for and to uphold feudalism. And it was not the rakyat who formed Umno. It was the elite class and members of royalty who formed Umno. And Umno was formed in the palace of the Sultan of Johor.
Remember that, Mahathir!
I have heard Mahathir talk about how and why Umno was formed so many times. And each time he lies. I hope from now on Mahathir would tell people the truth regarding Umno and not the fairytale that he is so fond of relating like a bedtime story to his cucu.
In the next paragraph Mahathir says, “Diantara sebab demokrasi dipilih ialah kerana demokrasi mempermudahkan pemilihan pemimpin dan penukaran pemimpin dalam parti dan negara.”
That, again, is not true. Malayans had no say in what they wanted. The British decided what type of government we should have (which, of course, must be a Westminster system of government). And they even decided who and which political party was going to rule Malaya (the Alliance Party).
And that was why the British conducted the first election in 1955 and only when it was proven that the rakyat wanted the Alliance Party as its government (the Alliance Party won all except one seat) did the British agree to Merdeka two years later in 1957.
So, the truth is, the British decided what system of government we should adopt. We did not make that choice as Mahathir is trying to tell us. In fact, the British even decided that Umno, MCA and MIC should merge or come together as a coalition under the Alliance Party. If Umno, MCA and MIC did not agree then Malaya would not have been given Merdeka.
In short, the Westminster system of government and even the formation of the Alliance Party were shoved down our throats. It was not what the rakyat wanted. It was what the British wanted.
Then Mahathir talks about 1987 and how Tengku Razaleigh Hamzah challenged him for the Umno Presidency — and lost. Mahathir said, “Pada tahun 1987 Tengku Razaleigh dan Musa Hitam mencabar saya sebagai Presiden parti. Kempen bebas dilakukan oleh kedua-dua pihak. Tidak ada siapa yang dipecat.”
Yes, no one may have been sacked from the party. And that was because there was no longer any party to sack you from. What Mahathir did was, instead of sacking his enemies from the party, he closed down the party and formed a new party and blocked his enemies from joining the new party.
In short, there was a mutiny on board the ship. But instead of throwing the mutineers into the sea, he scuttled and sunk the ship and drowned the mutineers. He then rowed away in a lifeboat and boarded another ship. And now he claims, “I never threw anyone into the sea to drown.” Of course not! They had all already drowned when you sunk the ship.
Mahathir then says, “Najib bertindak keras dan mengguna kuasa sebagai Presiden parti dan Perdana Menteri untuk menghalang sesiapa yang cuba mempengaruhi kedudukannya.”
But then of course this is what Najib should do. That is called politics. People try to oust you or defeat you and you do the same thing back to them. Aiyah! Is Mahathir saying he does not understand politics?
It is like football. The other side tries to kick the ball into your goal and you try to kick the ball into their goal as well. Is Mahathir saying only you can kick the ball into their goal but when they also try to kick the ball into your goal you scream about how unfair the other side is? What a silly notion!
Mahathir has used the ISA on his enemies. Was not Anwar Ibrahim detained under ISA on 20th September 1998? Were not many others who were seen as Anwar’s supporters (the current Deputy Prime Minister included) not also detained under ISA? Was not I, plus nine other ‘Reformists’ (the Reformasi 10), not also detained under ISA in April 2001? What about Operasi Lalang?
Was not Tengku Razaleigh Hamzah removed as the Finance Minister because he challenged Tun Musa Hitam for the Umno Deputy Presidency? Was not Syed Hamid Albar denied a seat in Johor because he challenged Anwar Ibrahim for the post of Umno Youth Leader?
Why was Rahim Thamby Chik really asked to resign as the Melaka Chief Minister? Was it because he had sex with an underage girl or because he was a threat to Anwar and he was sacrificed to save Anwar? And was this not why Anwar pursued the case against Rahim and refused to let him go even though Mahathir wanted Anwar to back off?
Have you heard the saying: if you can’t stand the heat then get out of the kitchen?
Mahathir wants to light fires all over the place and then he complains about the heat. This is called politics, mah! You try to kill me and I try to kill you. And just because you failed to kill Najib, and instead Najib is killing you (and all your people), that does not give you the right to grumble and complain.
When you challenge someone to a fight you must be prepared to take the punches. It comes with the territory. And if you can’t stand the punches then don’t start a fight. And stop screaming about democracy this and democracy that when you lose the fight. You are as sincere about democracy as a prostitute is about no sex before marriage.