The Sinister Daily

Ask Blogger-turned-Deputy Minister, YB Dato’ P. Kamalanathan, about fake news and he would lament the demise of ethical journalism.  He was once asked by a journalist from a local daily to comment on the video of an Indian-looking woman having her head shaved by two Malay-looking men that was made viral.

Being a responsible social media practitioner, Kamalanathan made the effort to verify the authenticity of the video, only to find out that it had originated from a South American nation, and the incident had happen in that particular country.

When we talk about the ethics of journalism, we would easily imagine the responsibility to ensure the accuracy of the journalists’ work; to verify information before releasing an article; and to shun stereotyping.  Unfortunately, in the world of today’s journalism, accuracy is no longer a value but sensationalism is.  More often than not, an article is conjured to shape the way readers think rather than to allow them to form their own opinion based on a balanced article.

Coincidentally, twenty years ago this year, the eighteenth James Bond movie was released. It was about a psychopathic media mogul who plans to provoke global war to boost sales and ratings of his news divisions.  Although far-fetched, the plot is what many online and print media do nowadays.  And what is to be provoked may not be as dangerous as a global war but equally explosive racial or religious clashes.

Enter The Star.

Yesterday evening, The Star announced the immediate suspension of its Group Editor-in-Chief, Datuk Leanne Goh Lee Yen and executive director Dorairaj Nadason, but not before it sent four editors to face the wrath of the KDN.  The KDN had slapped the daily with a seven-day show cause, while the Inspector-General of Police has begun investigating it under the Sedition Act.

Sedition Act may be seen as a heavy-handed response, but not given The Star’s penchant for inciting racial and religious outrage. It has an array of examples of provoking the above.

During the month of Ramadhan in 2011, The Star published three pork-centred advertisements in its Ramadhan Delights pullout.  Three pork advertisements in a Ramadhan Delights pullout could not have been unintentional. The KDN summoned The Star and was let off with a slap on the wrist.

A screenshot of justread-whatever.blogspot.com article on The Star’s Ramadhan Pork Fest

A mere two years later, it published a report on the rise in the number of child marriages in Malaysia.  The choice of visual display accompanying the report was extremely suggestive.

The suggestive photo used by The Star when reporting on child marriages

The Star harped only on the 2012 statistics provided by the Malaysian Syariah Judiciary Depart­ment (JKSM) where 1022 marriage application involving at least a minor was approved by the Syariah judiciary.  And then it sought the view of Sisters in Islam to justify the report, putting Islam in a bad light.

What it failed to report was that in the same year, 468 marriages involving non-Muslim minors were also approved.  How is that for balanced reporting?  I know that the link given is from 2016, but could the The Star journalist filing that story not have gone to the National Registraton Department to seek for the non-Muslim numbers?

What is sad is that the story was filed by a Muslim journalist.

However, not all of The Star’s journalists were dancing the same tune.  Joceline Tan whose columns have been taking on the Opposition by the horns, faces the wrath of the DAP and PKR on almost a daily basis.  Another was Sira Habibu who, when based in Pulau Pinang, wrote exposés on the DAP and PKR polls.

Things changed for Sira Habibu when Leanne Goh was appointed the Group Editor-in-Chief in 2014.  Sira was tranferred to Kelantan and away from being able to do stories on especially the DAP.  She had one very notable article ridiculing the DAP polls which was given the title “It’s All In The Family For DAP’s Top Rung.”

Sira Habibu’s article ridiculing the DAP line up

If you search for the article using its URL now, which is www.thestar.com.my/news/nation/2012/12/10/its-all-in-the-family-for-daps-top-rung/ you will find that it is no longer there.

This is where Sira Habibu’s article on the DAP line up was

Leanne Goh did not even defend Joceline Tan’s writing when attacked by a former The Star journalists for being anti-Opposition.

Since then, The Star has been pandering to the DAP evangelists and Liberal Muslims on the pretext of promoting a “Moderate Malaysia.”

When Pastor Ramond Koh went missing in February 2017, The Star went to town with the case, reporting at least seven times between March and May this year on the issue with headlines such as this:

The above headline suggests that the Malaysian security forces and indirectly the Malaysian government may be involved in the disappearance of the said pastor.  The location of the video is not where the pastor was first said to have gone missing and the speed of the CCTV camera panning suggests that there was someone controlling the camera and that the person knew what to wait for and what was going to happen.

The Star’s coverage of the missing pastor was picked up by foreign portals that have since put Malaysia in a bad light.

All the above quoted The Star.  So what is Leanne Goh’s game?

The Star has since suspended Leanne Goh and a senior editor Dorairaj Nadason over the frontpage fiasco, and have returned Datuk Wong Chun Wai to oversee the editorial operations.  But mind you some of the examples I mentioned above also happened during Chun Wai’s time as the GEIC which goes to show that he was not in total control back then.

The Star has issued countless apologies especially to the Muslims in Malaysia but has remained remorseless.

So would Chun Wai be able to wrestle the evangelist and liberal monsters who reside within The Star, or would a suspension of its publishing and printing permits that it so deserves be needed to remind not only The Star, but all journalists to be ethical? Maybe only then its habit of promoting racial and religious hatred will stop.

We will see what the next six days will bring us.

Defence: All Is Fair In The RMAF

“Good iron doesn’t make nails, good men don’t make soldiers.”

That is the old Chinese adage which is still probably true especially for the Malaysian Chinese today.  It is the same adage that the late Lee Kuan Yew lamented about in one of his memoirs. The participation of the Chinese community in the Malaysian Armed Forces is still poor despite numerous recruitment drives done to get them to join.

In 2010, out of an approximate 100,000 men and women of the Malaysian Armed Forces, only 0.2 percent of Chinese joined the Malaysian Army, 0.3 percent joined the Royal Malaysian Navy, while 0.4 percent joined the Royal Malaysian Air Force. For the Indians, the numbers are 0.7 percent, 1.1 percent and 1.7 percent for the respective branch of the Malaysian Armed Forces.

It may be on the extreme end to say that the Chinese probably feel that it is far more important to make money than to play a role in defending the country, but the notion that I get is that they probably feel you cannot prosper working for the government.

It could also be due to the unwillingness of the youth nowadays to undergo hard training no matter how good the pay is. But that does not answer why the number of Malays are more in the Malaysian Armed Forces.

As a result, the Malaysian Armed Forces is overwhelmingly Malay.  Hence, in any leadership line up you would see more Malays becoming senior and star officers compared to the non-Malays.

This lopsided scene is then misinterpreted as the non-Malays do not stand a chance to rise and make the ranks – a perception that is played by those irresponsible to instill an anti-establishment feeling among the non-Malays.

Let us take the RMAF, for example, where the organisation has four non-Malay star officers (Brigadier-Generals and above) out of a total of 47.  That represents 8.5 percent of the total number of star officers compared to the 2.1 percent of total non-Malay participation in the RMAF, which is looking at increasing the number of non-Malays to a minimum of 20 percent of the total strength.

It is also important to note that among the operational officers, two non-Malay lady officers stand out the most.  They are Major Patricia Yapp Shau Yin RMAF and Major Teoh Siow Ling RMAF.

Major Patricia Yapp Shau Yin RMAF attributes her success to discipline, hardwork and determination, not race nor gender.

Major Patricia Yapp who hails from Sandakan, Sabah is an examplary Qualified Flying Instructor (QFI) who is the world’s first female pilot to fly the Russian-made Mikoyan-Gurevich MiG-29N.

When asked if there is discrimination in the RMAF towards women or the non-Malays, she said the men and women all do the same field training, physical training and flying training. Women don’t get special treatment and are all evaluated by the same standard and are given the same opportunities. The key is to never give up trying after each failure because it has taken her a lot to be where she is now. It is all about discipline, courage, teamwork and commitment.

She is saddened though that during one of the recruitment drives in her home state of Sabah, she waited for half a day for Sabahans to turn up but none did during the second half of the day.

Major Teoh Siow Ling RMAF flies the Lockheed C130H Hercules tactical transport aircraft

Major Teoh Siow Ling RMAF also attributes her success to discipline, determination and hardwork.  The Melaka-girl is aware that some non-Malays say that she would fare better elsewhere, for example, in the Republic of Singapore Armed Forces.

It is not true that there is discrimination against the non-Malays in the RMAF,” she said. “There are those who are my seniors who are Malays who still hold the rank of Captain. Race has nothing to do with it.

It is only because the number of non-Malays are small that you do not get to see a huge number go up,” she added. “If you don’t work hard, you will not go up and it doesn’t matter what race you are. If you do not shine, no one will see you and you will remain where you are.

The RMAF has had many pilots flying the fixed and rotary winged aircraft in its inventory since its establishment.  Not once has the RMAF barred any non-Malay to be involved in handling any sensitive equipment or information.  The Army has, if my memory serves me right, produced 29 non-Malay star officers, the RMN 22 while the RMAF 19.

Compare this to our Southern neighbour.  The Malays have only been accepted into the Armour Formation two years ago.  In fact, the Singapore Armed Forces used to have or still has a discriminatory policy towards the Malays, not allowing them to hold sensitive key positions thus depriving them of promising careers in the SAF.

Such discrimination does not exist in the Malaysian Armed Forces, which have produced 70 non-Malay Generals and Admirals.  All is especially fair in the RMAF.

Therefore, there is no reason for the non-Malays to shy away from joining the Malaysian Armed Forces.  There is also no reason for the people of Sabah and Sarawak to feel as if they would not be able to compete against those from the Peninsular.  After all, Major Patricia is from Sabah.

And the current Chief of the RMAF is from Kuching, Sarawak.

The Star Needs Some Moderation

This was the headline on the first day of Ramadhan, 27 May 2017.

It would have read differently had it read Muslims Observe Ramadhan Today and left the ‘terrorist’ headline on Page 3. It cannot be THAT important if its report was on Page 3.

The headline above sparked anger among Muslims in Malaysia from the first day of Ramadhan until almost the end of the second day. A full 36 hours after it was published which prompted The Star to issue a half-hearted apology.


This only further incensed the Muslims.


Veteran journalist Datuk Ahiruddin Atan aka Rocky Bru wrote on his Facebook account:


What is more interesting is the comment left by renowned blogger BigDog:


Joceline Tan, a The Star columnist who writes mostly leaning towards the current government was not defended by her GEIC (Group Editor-in-Chief) when attacked at the Group’s AGM.

It has also come to light that the GEIC, Datuk Leanne Goh, transferred a senior journalist who writes a lot about the DAP out of Pulau Pinang.

Yet when pastors went missing it was The Star that played up the issue religiously, and little was said by the tabloid when one came back from Thailand conveniently after Songkran ended.


We are now made to wonder why is this MCA-owned tabloid pandering to the evangelists in the DAP.

Just two days before the headline was printed media editors were summoned by the KDN and were told to refrain from publishing offensive materials.

This story was carried by The Star.

Two days later The Star decided to offend the Muslims and called it a mistake. How can it be a mistake if it has eleven prepress workflow before it gets published?

Coincidentally the GEIC fled the country on the day the offensive headline went to press. She is said to be in San Francisco now, avoiding the summon by KDN today.

Instead, a low level Malay has been chosen to face KDN.

Six years ago, The Star published a recipe for Ramadhan feast.  It was a pork dish. The Star was summoned by KDN and it issued an apology much like the most recent one promising it would not happen again.

Back in 1987, The Star had its printing license revoked for fanning racial sentiments. It is now seen to do the same and getting the backing of Malay liberals to justify its tasteless articles.

It is about time the KDN slap it with a three-year ban.

Defence: Malaysian Army’s Firepower Training 2017

AV8 Gempita firing at targets assigned

The Malaysian Army conducted its 2017 edition of the Firepower Training at the Syed Sirajuddin Camp in Gemas with the aim to give exposure to 120 local and 45 foreign participants of the Malaysian Command and Staff Course on the Army’s manouverability and firepower, as well as the importance of ground and air-to-ground fire support planning.

The PT91M Pendekar Main Battle Tank firing its 125mm gun

A total of 1,690 personnel from the Army and the Royal Malaysian Air Force were involved in making this training a success.  Assets involved include:

  • 6 X 105mm PH L5 Pack Howitzer;
  • 18 X 155mm G5 Mk III self-propelled Howitzer;
  • 4 X ASTROS II multiple launch rocket system;
  • 6 X PT-91M Pendekar Main Battle Tanks;
  • 7 X ACV300 Adnan;
  • 4 X AV8 Gempita;
  • 2 X Agusta A109 LOH;
  • 2 X Sikorsky S61A4 Nuri helicopters;
  • 2 X F/A18D Hornets; and,
  • 2 X BAe Hawk 208s.

In his speech, Major-General Dato’ Hasagaya Abdullah, General-Officer Commanding 3rd Malaysian Combined Arms Division welcomed guests and course participants to the firepower training.  He added that commanders who consider employment of weapon systems should look at the doctrine and tactical concepts to ensure sufficient strength and correct calibre of systems are employed.

Major General Dato’ Hasagaya Abdullah, GOC 3rd Combined Arms Division

Among guests who attended the firepower training were the Chief of Defence Forces Yang Mulia General Tan Sri Raja Mohamed Affandi bin Raja Mohamed Noor, the Chief of Army General Dato’ Sri Zulkiple bin Hj Kassim, Deputy Chief of Army Lieutenant-General Dato’ Seri Panglima Ahmad Hasbullah bin Hj Mohd Nawawi, and Deputy Chief of Australian Army Major-General Richard Maxwell “Rick” Burr.

The Royal Malaysian Air Force was represented by Commander of 1st Air Region, Major General Dato’ Mohd Faudzi bin Ahmad RMAF.

Major General Rick Burr, Deputy Australian Army Chief greets Malaysian generals

Major-General Burr was accompanied by Defence Adviser at the Australian High Commission in Malaysia Group Captain Wendy Horder RAAF.

Later, General Dato’ Sri Zulkiple said that he was very satisfied with the training conducted and results of the training will be scrutinised to address any shortcomings.  He added that despite budget constraints, he is thankful that the Government has provided sufficient funds for the upkeep and operating of available assets as well as for human capital development.

Two Sikorsky S-61A4 Nuris and a Agusta A109 LOH from the Malaysian Army Aviation, fly in formation above the Syed Sirajuddin Camp

Bila Cakap Macam K

Semalam si tua kutuk buat drama K. Dia cakap dia menangis sebab Proton dijual kepada orang asing. Dia mengibaratkan peristiwa tersebut bagaikan dia telah kehilangan seorang anak.

Untuk mendapatkan simpati mereka yang tiada berakal dia sanggup samakan diri beliau dengan Ahli Parlimen Pondan.

“I am a sissy.”


Sekali tu, sebuah laman Facebook telah mendedahkan bahawa si tua K itu lah yang telah memulakan proses penjualan anak sendiri tiga tahun lalu, iaitu semasa dia menjadi Pengerusi Proton.

Patutlah dia menangis. Tangisan kegembiraan rupa-rupanya.

Samggup jual anak sendiri dan salahkan orang lain.

Sabah 20-Point Agreement: Prologue

Colonial passport for the colonised people of North Borneo

Of late, there has been many attempts at attacking the unity of the nation through the skewing of historical facts.  Unfortunately, many in the government, too, do not have institutional memory of what our forefathers had gone through to allow the formation of the Federation of Malaysia.

The same lack of absence of institutional memory has also contributed to inability by many in 2011 to rebut Mat Sabu’s claim that the policemen who died in Bukit Kepong were ‘running dogs’ of the British colonials, and that the Communist Party of Malaya (CPM) were true fighters for the independence of Malaya, while Ronnie Liu of the DAP sang the same tune in 2005.

I wrote at length to debunk Mat Sabu, whom I regard as DAP’s own ‘running dog.’  Since then I have embarked on my personal crusade to explain to the people through talks and forums about how the British came to Malaya, the treaties, who were colonised, which parts of Malaya that were not colonised, and what the CPM was fighting for.

On Malaysia Day 2016, I began posting about the making of the Federation of Malaysia.  I started off with the concept of Malaysia, followed by the consultations between the Government of Malaya, the British Government, the representatives from British North Borneo, and the British colony of Sarawak.  Then I wrote about the Reid Commission and reaction from our neighbours.  The last part covered the reasons we have Hari Kebangsaan and Hari Malaysia.

You may want to read the above links before I get into the heavy stuff.

Between now and Hari Malaysia, I shall write about the Sabah 20-Point Agreement.  In 1987, Dr Jeffrey Kitingan had commented on the Memorandum on the 20-Point Agreement for the Inclusion of Sabah into Malaysia.  This memorandum was presented by the leaders of British North Borneo to the Cobbold Commission as a prerequisite for the inclusion of Sabah into Malaysia.

However, the notion that this memorandum had been accepted in toto as the basis of British North Borneo’s inclusion into the Federation of Malaysia alongside the colony of Sarawak, the state of Singapore, and the states of the Federation of Malaya is inaccurate or baseless.

The contents of the Memorandum was not an agreement made by North Borneo, Sarawak, the British Government, and the Government of Malaya but were rather demands made by the leaders of North Borneo as a precursor to the consultations.

What became the basis for the inclusion of Sabah are the points that had been agreed upon by all parties, no more and no less.  After all, why had the leaders of North Borneo agreed for the colony to be included into the new Federation had there not been an agreement for that to happen in the first place?

The lack of understanding as well as misunderstanding of what had been agreed as well as the developments that had taken place since has presented the exploitative opportunity for certain elements to create resentment and anti-Federation sentiments  among the people of Sabah.

Therefore, I shall endeavour to explain and counter the points raised, not only to educate those in Sabah, but to also educate the rest of the people of Malaysia, as well as those in the Federal Government on the latter’s commitment towards not only Sabah, but also Sarawak and the specil privileges that have been accorded to them.

I shall make references to the following:

  • Report of the Commission of Enquiry, North Borneo and Sarawak, 21st June 1962;
  • Inter-Governmental Committee Report, 1962;
  • The Sabah State Constitution as at 10th July 1989;
  • The Federation of Malaysia Constitution as in 1989;
  • The Federation of Malaya Constitution as in 1962;
  • The Malaysia Solidarity Consultative Committee meeting, 3rd February 1962;
  • The Administration of Islamic Law Enactment of Sabah, No.15/77 dated 23rd December 1977;
  • Act 32 (National Language Act 1963/67) as in 1983;
  • The National Language (Application) Enactment of Sabah, 1973; and,
  • The Federation of Malaysia Agreement, 1963.

In the next part, I shall write about the first point of the memorandum – religion.

In the mean time, have patience and read Another Brick in the Wall’s take, as well as by The Right of Reply, on this issue, written a few years back.

The Ardent Apai

The practical leader – General Dato Sri Haji Affendi bin Buang RMAF

“A leader is one who knows the way, goes the way and shows the way.”

That quote from renowned American author John C Maxwell aptly describes the Chief of the Royal Malaysian Air Force, General Dato’ Sri Haji Affendi bin Buang RMAF.

One look at him reminded me of the first Chief of the RMAF that I served under, the late Lieutenant-General Tan Sri Mohamed bin Ngah Said RMAF – charismatic, feet-on-the-ground practical.

General Affendi is that.  A senior RMAF officer describes him as “an intelligent, smartly dressed, easy going, approachable and true Air Force General.”

If you want to see things get done, Apai will get it done,” he added.

And it is no wonder that “Apai”, the Iban word for “Father” is not just his callsign, but in the true sense what the men and women of the RMAF regard him as.

Hailing from Kuching, Sarawak, General Affendi is the first RMAF Chief from the eastern half of Malaysia.  He joined as an Officer Cadet in 1980 before undergoing his basic flight training at the No.1 Flight Training School in RMAF Alor Setar (now Air Force College).  He subsequently trained on the Aermacchi MB-339A before joining the No.9 Squadron for a type-conversion on the McDonnell Douglas A-4PTM Skyhawk, and later served as an operational fighter pilot of the No.6 Squadron.

He was recognised as an ace when flying the Skyhawks doing Close Air Support and Battlefield Interdiction missions against the Communist insurgency in the late 1980s.  A senior Air Defence Controller described him:

Apai is s***hot! With Apai you seldom need to call Check Six. He will manoeuvre and saddle-in to kill the bandit.”

In 1994 he was one of the officers selected for the MiG-29 Project Team who inducted and built up the operational capabilities of the RMAF MiG-29s.  Later he flew the MiG-29s on patrols in the Spratlys area.

In recognition of his leadership, steadfastness and bravery in conductng his missions, he was not only awarded with military gallantry honours but also recently conferred the sacred Blue Beret of the Pasukan Khas TUDM (PASKAU).

General Affendi was conferred the Blue Beret of the PASKAU on the 28th February 2017
Out of his office, General Affendi is known to shun protocol whenever possible.  He prefers to be with the men and women he leads and meets them whenever he can.  Despite being the Chief, General Affendi prefers to wade in the same mud as the one his men and women wade in.  You will never see him sit in a VIP seat when travelling on board any of the RMAF transport aircraft.  He prefers to work within his means.

And given the tough times the almost 59-year old RMAF is going through due to the global economic slowdown, only the tough will get going.  And when the jobs needs to be done, Apai will see it get done.