The right of reply

Enough is enough. People who proclaim to fight for freedom of expression and free media but censors other's legitimate reply based on their whims and fancy, must realise that on the internet, they cannot suppress peoples' legitimate right to reply and express contrarian views. This blog welcomes all views. ~ Ellese

The Chinese dilemma By Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad


I like Mahathir for his straightforward articulation. I have also read a retort to this by rubbish TMI. I’ve responded in TMI and will not be surprised if they again suppress my comment.

For this piece I’m going to defend Dr Mahathir’s views. It resonates to many of my previous write on race compromise and western values hegemony through Internet. In other words the balance of our social cohesion. If we go deeper some may even argue the premise of dr Mahathirs proposition has changed. Or could we have become more racial than ever in our history?

I know some have personal hatred against Mahathir. Its your feeling and I’m not going to change that. But If you’re personal don’t begrudge others being personal. To an extent which is right and fair im going to defend him. But it would be better if one can argue on his idea notwithstanding it may be controversial.

’KONGSI’ CONCEPT: Each side has to sacrifice something so that the other can gain something.

IN response to the emergence of a Malay political party, Umno and its success in rejecting the British inspired Malayan Union, the Chinese community of the 1940s saw the need for a political party of their own to present their views to the British government.

Thus was the MCA conceived and born, led by Malacca’s Sir Cheng-Lock Tan. Although it was intended to counter the influence of Umno and protect the interests of the Chinese community, events changed the strategy and role of the MCA.

In 1952 the Kuala Lumpur Umno leaders and the Kuala Lumpur MCA branch leaders decided that in the Kuala Lumpur municipal elections, they should not contest against each other, but instead should support each other’s candidates in their respective constituencies.

The results startled them as they defeated almost all the non-racial parties. Realising the political advantage of cooperating with each other the Tunku (Abdul Rahman) and Sir Cheng-Lock Tan, and senior leaders of the MCA and Umno decided to formalise their cooperation by setting up the Alliance, a coalition of MCA and Umno.

The basis of this coalition was the idea of supporting each other and sharing the power gained. Buoyed by the success of the Alliance party in the 1955 elections, in which the MIC had joined, the Tunku looked more kindly at the proposal of Sir Cheng-Lock that citizenship should be based on jus soli (citizenship by being born in the country) and not jus saguinis (citizenship based on the Malaysian citizenship of the father or mother, i.e. citizenship based on blood relation).

The Tunku did not quite agree but he nevertheless decided to give one million citizenships to unqualified Chinese and Indians.

With that the confrontation between the Chinese and the Malays changed into positive cooperation.

It was a classic kongsi that was set up. The essence is an undertaking to share. Sharing involves a give and take arrangement, in which each side has to sacrifice something so that the other can gain something.
As the Malays made up the majority of the citizens they naturally led the Alliance. But the Chinese and Indians were not without adequate power. In any case Malay political power would be mitigated by Chinese and Indians’ voting and economic power.

The Tunku saw immediate benefit from the “kongsi” as he believed Malays only wanted to be government employees and the Chinese wanted to be in business. There would be no conflict or tussle between them.
The Indians would fill up the professional posts. He did not foresee the days when government could not create enough jobs for the greatly increased number of Malays.

The kongsi Alliance worked well. But in 1963 Singapore joined Malaysia.
Immediately the PAP tried to gain Chinese support by condemning the Alliance kongsi for being disadvantageous to the Chinese. Malaysians, said the PAP, were not equal. There should be a Malaysian Malaysia where all the benefits should be based on merit alone, with the best taking everything, irrespective of race.

Without saying so in so many words the PAP was inferring that the Malays did not deserve their positions. The best people should rule the country. In the eyes of the PAP, Singapore was ruled by the best qualified people. That they happen to be almost all Chinese is incidental.
In the 1964 elections the MCA and Malaysian Chinese generally valued their cooperation with the Malays. They rejected the PAP and its chauvinistic appeal, giving it only one seat.

The Tunku realised what the PAP was up to and decided that Singapore should not be a part of Malaysia. But the PAP was not done. The remnant of the party in Malaysia set up the DAP to carry on the Malaysian Malaysia meritocratic formula for undermining Chinese support for the MCA.

Harping continuously on the so-called Malay privileges and the unfairness to the Chinese, the DAP slowly eroded the idea of kongsi in the multi-racial coalition of the Barisan Nasional.

Despite the fact that the Barisan Nasional supported Chinese education and the use of the Chinese language, the DAP convinced many Chinese that the Chinese, their culture and language are not given proper treatment by the Barisan Nasional coalition.

The MCA was attacked for not doing enough for the Chinese.

Read more: The Chinese dilemma – Columnist – New Straits Times


6 thoughts on “The Chinese dilemma By Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad

  1. For discussion sake let us forget about MCA, MIC, DAP or any other non Muslim parties. Let us say this is a Malay country. Let us imagine there are no Chinese and Indians and other non-Malays in this country. Lets us think there is no MCA, MIC, DAP and other ethnic parties.

    The question is will the Malays be united? Let us assume we have only two political parties UMNO and PAS – simply put it as one for the Malays and one for the Muslims.

    Let us define Muslim as orthodox Malay who are wants to build the Islamic way of life in accordance with the instructions contained in the Qur’an and who recognizes that Muhammad was a perfect human model, and the community of Madinah was a perfect society.

    Let us imagine the Muslim pattern of life for the individual and the society will be guided by the following commandments:

    1. There is only one Muslim people, no matter how scattered its members be.
    2. Regardless of the accidents of geography, resources belong to all Ummah.
    3. Muslims are to observe the ‘golden mean’ in their behaviour by applying the principles of ‘amar bil ma’ruf wanahi anilmunkar’ (doing good deeds and prevent sins).
    4. All Muslims are responsible for the well-being of every member of the Ummah.
    5. The institution of Zakat and all other taxes necessary for the financial needs of the government.
    6. Work is considered as worship. Therefore, all able-bodied people must work.
    7. Speculation is prohibited.
    8. Accumulation of wealth is prohibited.
    9. Ihtikar, the act of hoarding commodities in order to force up prices, is forbidden.
    10. Infaq is ordered which in turn will lead to the growth of the economy.
    11. Interest rates of all kinds are forbidden.
    12. Monopolization of resources, knowledge and techniques is not allowed.
    13. Just profits are allowed and the rate of return serves as the allocative mechanism in the capital market.
    14. Ownership is limited and conditional.
    15. Production of social goods in sufficient for the Ummah is the responsibility of all Muslims, individually and collectively. They are not absolved of this responsibility until sufficient supply is available.
    16. Co-operation among Muslims is emphasized, particularly in the projects where the efforts of individuals are inadequate.
    17. Waste in consumption and in production is prohibited.
    18. To aid the poorer section of the society that could not earn enough, the surplus of wealth instead of remaining idle must be used for the welfare of the society either in the form of Zakat and Sadaqat or plough back through trading and new economic activities.
    19. Economic motives are constrained by moral bounds i.e. to eliminate economic injustices, deprivation, exploitation and corruption.
    20. The five times daily prayers to be performed congregationally at the mosques for the man folk.

    Will there still be hate, prejudice and racism among the Malays/Muslim? Will there be fightings and perhaps riots between the Malays/Muslims? I am more inclined to say maybe yes. If so, who are we to blame then when there are only Malays/Muslims in this country? A truly Malaysian Dilemma, indeed. No?

    • “A truly Malaysian Dilemma, indeed. No?”

      I wanna said the same when i first read, but being a ‘chinese’ i rather refrain from doing so. glad a ‘malaysian’ share what i feel. but come to think of it, this were written by mahathir the ‘great’ politician, would it surprise anyone?

    • The Muslims can never be united. Even if they’re committed Muslims we cannot unite. There’s history to back up since the Sahabah period. Even in Egypt the salafi’s and ikhwan’s can’t unite.

      However, it does not mean Muslims should not try to unite. Its ordained upon us. We should unite on common fundamental issues. And we need to learn to agree to disagree like our great jurists of the past on other issues.

      • Ellese…

        You are precisely spot on.

        From Auf bin Malik said: Muhammad the Messenger, said: “The Jews were divided into seventy-one sects, then only one group of people who go to heaven and that seventy more will go to hell. The Christians were divided into groups of seventy-two sects, then seventy-one group in hell and only one group of people who go to heaven. In the name of God, myself in his power, my Ummah will be divided into seventy-three sects, only one group of people who enter Paradise and seventy-two others will go to hell. The Companions asked Muhammad, “who are safe “? The Prophet. replied, “They are the Ummah of The Ahlus Sunnah Wal Jumaah”. [Hadis Riwayat Ibnu Majah]

        As you already knew, the meaning of ‘The Ahlus Sunnah Wal Jumaah’ are those who remain steadfast to the Qur’an and Sunnah and also with the stance of the ‘sahabah’ (the companions). Apart from these people, the others are misguided and will end up in hell.

  2. Ellese the HYPOCRITE,

    Your quote: “I know some have personal hatred against Mahathir. Its your feeling and I’m not going to change that. But If you’re personal don’t begrudge others being personal. To an extent which is right and fair im going to defend him. But it would be better if one can argue on his idea notwithstanding it may be controversial.”

    I have mentioned many times on the above standing previously, but your refusal to accept to discuss on issue, but prefer to do a personal attack on the commentators.
    Remember ad hominem?

    Ellese, you are such a hypocrite.

    Now, appologies to all those commentators that you have offended.

    • Dear hypocrite wave,

      Don’t you realise your comment was purely personal. Tak da isi pun. As usual, how can you criticize things yang you buat? Isn’t that hypocritical?

      Ps: kata don’t want to read my posting but you still do. Even though it reflects again your inconsistent stand, I thank you nevertheless.:-)

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