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TAG MT 73: Mahathir Sudah Membuatnya Dulu Lagi
By Fan Yew Teng
13/4/2001 9:27 pm Fri
[Sebuah rencana yang amat baik untuk dibaca dan MESTI disebar untuk
menangkis fitnah kununnya DSWA mahu orang luar mencampuri hal-ehwal
dalaman negara sedangkan beliau sekadar memberi taklimat kesihatan
Anwar sahaja. Malah Mahathir lebih teruk lagi mengancam keselamatan
dalam dan luar negara seolah-olah dialah menteri segala-galanya.
Memang Mahathir lebih teruk. Beliau bukan sahaja pergi berjumpa dengan
musuh negara malah mengikat perjanjian rahsia pula. DSWA menjemput orang luar
sahaja tetapi Mahathir dijemput dan ditalifon oleh kuasa luar dan dia
bingkas akur saja kehendak mereka walaupun buruk kesannya kepada negara
lain (sehingga rakyat tidak berdosa menjadi mangsa) dan negara kita juga.
Bukan itu sahaja, Mahathir juga menyokong dan mencampuri urusan negara luar
walaupun ia ditolak oleh rakyat tempatan. Dia berdagang dengan Burma,
campur tangan di Timor-Timor dan menyibuk dalam hal-ehwal sensitif konflik
bala perang Jepun. Ini semua mengaibkan kita juga dan mengundang tindak-balas
yang mengancam keselamatan negara dan rakyat kita yang berada di mana-mana.
Ada beberapa kes rakyat Malaysia dibunuh di luar negara lantaran wasangka
sikap Mahathir juga. Ini jangan kita lupa.
(Mahathir did it, too, in the 70s - brief foreigners)
Oleh: Fan Yew Teng MP
Perdana Menteri Dr. Mahathir Mohammed membuat kerenah lagi. Dia masih
beranggapan bahawa orang asing masih berminat untuk campurtangan
hal ehwal Malaysia dengan tujuan untuk mengambilalih kuasa
pemerintahan negara. Dia tidak sedar, sikap menakut-nakutkan ini
sebenarnya menyerlahkan perwatakannya, parti politik dan kerajaan yang
Walaupun Mahathir amat yakin bahawa rakyat Malaysia mempunyai ingatan
yang singkat, ramai rakyat negara ini yang masih ingat dengan
mudahnya gelagat politik Mahathir sendiri mengenai perkara ini sejak
lebih 32 tahun yang lalu.
Sebagai contoh cuba fikirkan bagaimana Mahathir melalui penulisannya
yang sungguh kuat mengkritik Perdana Menteri Tunku Abdul Rahman
Putra dan kerajaan pimpinan beliau, seperti yang disiarkan dalam
'Solidarity' sebuah terbitan Filipina di awal 1970-an dulu.
Semakin ramai manusia termasuk mereka yang menghuni rantau Barat,
yang sudah dapat menelah lakonan anti-imperialis Mahathir. Inilah
yang meyakinkan 'The Economist of London' sebagai salah satu
majalah mingguan paling berjaya di dunia, mencatatkan berita ini
pada isu keluaran Mac 31 2001 mengenai Mahathir:
"Dia telah mendabik dada mengenai kehebatan Malaysia dalam usaha
menarik pelabur, walaupun dia telah mempersendakan para speculator dan
imperialisma ekonomi barat. Dia beranggapan bahawa dia boleh mengutuk
barat sesuka hatinya terahadap konsep globalisasi mereka, sedangkan di
waktu yang sama dia mengenyit mata kepada para perutusan mereka dan
membantu mereka mengasaskan ruang niaga.
FYT ialah bekas ahli Parlimen Malaysia dan bekas perunding kepada
PBB. Sebagai seorang pengarang dan pensyarah, dia kini sudah pun
bersara daripada dunia politik dan sedang menyudahkan sebuah
by Fan Yew Teng MP
12:15pm, Thu: Prime Minister Dr Mahathir Mohamed is at it
again - foreigners are interesting in Malaysia's internal
affairs and that may help them to take over the country. As
l shall explain later, Mahathir's latest scare story may
actually tell us more about him, his party and his
government than he realises.
Mahathir was commenting a few days go on the attendance of
some foreign diplomats at a closed-door briefing by Keadilan
president, Datin Seri Dr Wan Azizah Wan Ismail on her
husband's medical condition the week before. Wan Azizah is
also a member of the Malaysian Parliament now.
One English-language daily reported Mahathir as having said
that there was no need to invite foreigners and explain
matters to them which were considered internal affairs.
Mahathir said that inviting them over and offering them an
explanation on these matters might one day lead to them
taking over the country.
'We don't like foreigners interfering in our internal
affairs. If this continues, don't be surprised if one day
they take over our country,' Mahathir was quoted as saying.
According to another English-language daily, diplomats from
France, New Zealand, Australia, Indonesia, the United States
and Singapore were among those who had turned up for Dr Wan
This is of course not the first time Mahathir has
capitalised on the bogey of a foreigner or the bogey of
foreigners taking the country. But the fact remains that
Mahathir is one of the least qualified to wax eloquent on
the subject and the related issue of foreign interference in
our internal matters.
Much that Mahathir banks on the hope that Malaysians have
short memories, many Malaysians will easily remember
Mahathir's own political behaviour vis-a-vis such matters
over the last 32 years.
Consider, for instance, Mahathir having his article which
was highly critical of the then Prime Minister Tunku Abdul
Rahman and his government, published in Solidarity, a
publication in the Philippines in the early 1970s.
Was he then explaining to foreigners matters considered to
be our internal affairs? And one can be quite certain that
copies of Solidarity did find their way to offices and
libraries in other parts of the world.
Around that some period, didn't Mahathir speak to foreigners
in Singapore and Australia and brief them most critically on
matters which were considered our internal affairs?
Mahathir had found it was necessary during those years when
he was in the political wilderness - just after he had lost
his parliamentary seat in1969 general-elections and had been
sacked from Umno - to explain matters which were considered
our internal affairs.
And why shouldn't Dr Wan Azizah, as the leader of a duly
registered political party, Anwar Ibrahim's wife, and an
elected representative of the people no less, explain
matters so close to her heart and mind to those who cared to
If Mahathir apparently had nothing to hide in the 1970s, why
he is so jittery and so desperate to hide, cover up and
censor things in the year 2001?
If what Mahathir did in the 1970s did not end up with the
Philippines or other foreigners taking over our country,
what evidence is there now to suggest that some foreigners
could be taking over one day?
Would Mahathir be kind enough to explain to us why and how a
particular brand of political hyprocrisy should be swallowed
raw and whole?
Of course it has not always been that Mahathir is so furious
with foreigners, even as prime minister. Consider his trip
to Washington DC in 1984 - just after three years as prime
minister - to sign a secret military agreement with Casper
Weinberger, US defense secretary in the Reagan
This agreement was secret until it was exposed some years
later by the Asian Wall Street Journal.
Remember Mahathir sent his then foreign minister Abu Hassan
Omar to the United Nations Security council to vote in
support of Resolution 678, initiated by US President George
Bush (father of current US President George W Bush), to
adopt any means to get the Iraqis out of Kuwait.
Our so-called special envoy Musa Hitam and our head of
mission at the United Nations Razali lsmail were utterly
irrelevant, even if they had urged a different vote.
Mahathir had already decided to support George Bush, and
that was that.
Thanks to the support of people like Mahathir, George Bush,
in mid-January 1991, unleashed a 43-day aerial bombardment
of Iraq, resulting in the killing of thousands of unarmed
innocent men and women, the elderly and the sickly, children
and infants, and the utter destruction of homes, hospitals,
water treatment plants, electricity generation plants,
school, mosques, churches, roads, bridges and other forms of
infrastructure. Added to the economic sanctions already then
in place against the people of Iraq, the effects were simply
The aerial bombing and the last 10 years of sanctions have
killed more than 1.5 million people in Iraq, most of them
And Mahathir and his government clearly have blood on their
hands, however much he pretends to speak up against the Big
Powers and imperialism.
Incidentally, the so-called secret military arrangement he
signed with the United States in 1984 is alive and kicking.
Hence, the increasing number of the visits to our ports by
US warships and US military bigwigs.
More and more people, including many in the West, are seeing
through Mahathir's anti-imperialist credentials. And so it
was that The Economist of London, one of the most successful
news weeklies in the world, had this to say about Mahathir
in its March 31, 2001 issue:
'He has also boasted of Malaysia's attractiveness to direct
investors, even as he has excoriated speculators and western
economic imperialism. His calculation has always been that
he can lambast the West, and its globalising ways, while
winking at its emissaries and helping them to set up shop.
This provides useful distraction at home, without
forestalling the growth Dr Mahathir needs to feed the
government's patronage machine. That is how things used to
work anyway. Most foreign direct investment, however, is now
going to China, as Malaysia is seen to be too similar to its
corrupt neighbours. That will hurt Malaysians - but will Dr
Mahathir feel it??
Talking about foreigners and interference, hasn't Mahathir
been busy with his own interference over the last 20 years
that he has been prime minister? Let's cite only three
examples, first, East Timor.
East Timor was invaded in December 1975 by Indonesian troops
under President Surhato, and was later annexed as a province
of Indonesia, despite United Nations resolutions to the
Between 1981, when Mahathir became Malaysia's prime
minister, and 1999, when the people of East Timor voted
overwhelmingly in a UN-supervised referendum for
independence. Mahathir's policy on East Timor has been
utterly disgraceful, slavishly supporting Suharto's illegal
occupation of that territory unquestioningly.
Remember in the early 1990s, when Radio Television Malaysia
(RTM) inadvertently showed some pictures of Indonesian
atrocities in East Timor, and the Suharto government
Mahathir's Information minister was sent crawling to Jakarta
to apologise. The Umno Youth-led mob's violent disruption of
the 2nd Asia-Pacific Conference on East Timor in Kuala
Lumpur in November 1996 was very much in character with
Mahathir's policy on East Timor.
When the East Timorese people had voted in favour of
independence, Mahathir still saw fit to make mumbling noises
about letting those people out of the clutches of bullying
Indonesia, and criticising the UN-supervised referendum.
Who then was interfering in the life and death of the East
Timor people? That's a very pertinent question, because
about 250,000 East Timorese people died as a direct result
of Indonesian invasion and subsequent occupation - about a
third of the entire population.
Similarly with Burma, now called Myanmar by the military
gangsters known as SPDC, the latest mutation from a former
military bunch known as SLORC. Isn't Mahathir's failure to
condemn the military's massacre of a few hundred Burmese
dissidents on August 8, 1988 a form of interference against
the legitimate interests of the Burmese people and a
grievous blow to democracy? Isn't so-called 'constructive
engagement' an insult to the Burmese people? So, who is
While in Japan on a visit in May,1999, Mahathir in a public
statement said the people of Asia should forget past
Japanese war atrocities. Incredible!
Who gave Mahathir the blessed right to interfere on this
matter which painfully affects the lives of hundreds of
thousands of victims of Japanese atrocities in World War ll
and their loved ones? His Japanese friends and admirers? Did
he consult the Chinese, Korean and other victims of Japanese
imperialism before he opened his mouth on the subject?
It is understandable, although despicable, that Mahathir
behaves the way he does, whenever Anwar Ibrahim is
concerned. Anwar behind bars haunts him on a daily basis. He
could not afford to compete with a free Anwar before and
during the1999 general elections., because he knew he was no
match for Anwar's oratory and dynamic personality.
This is even more so now that Anwar behind bars is wearing
the aura of the martyr. He is so scared about Anwar that the
only way he can feel safe about Anwar is when the latter is
On another level, Mahathir's silly outburst about foreigners
taking over the country is to distract Malaysians' attention
from the many socio-economic and political problems facing
them, not least among them the rising discontent within Umno
against Mahathir himself.
Otherwise, why is he so desperate about so-called 'Malay
unity' talks with the opposition PAS? It is a measure of the
state of absurdity in this country that the person who has
repeatedly damaged Malay unity over the past three decades
is now posing as an ardent advocate of that unity.
FAN YEW TENG is a former member of Parliament and
former consultant to the United Nations. An author and
lecturer, he is retired from active politics and is
currently nearing completion of another book.