The ‘Get Anwar’ agenda

Nik Nazmi Nik Ahmad
The Malaysian Insider
May 16, 2011

MAY 16 — The birth of my first child has given me a new perspective on things. While I do feel older, it has also made me realise that it’s not just my future, or the future of my generation that I have to work for alone now.

So when I found out that my colleague Nurul Izzah Anwar received SMSes threatening her daughter, I was sickened and outraged, as I imagine any parent — any human being — would be.

It is still too early to tell who was behind the SMS or why they did it. It might be part of the bigger political game or it might be some crazy lunatic.

What is clear however is that it is a result of the debased phenomenon we call Malaysian politics. To say politics is dirty is a cliché, but this incident proves that Malaysian politics is filthy to the core.

The country has gone through many tragedies: the Memali incident, the 1988 judicial crisis, the 1998 sacking of Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim and many others. Combined together, it has damned Malaysia.

Central to the decline is the “Get Anwar” agenda. One may agree or disagree, like or dislike Anwar, but I think not many can dispute that the establishment led by Umno has been consumed by their desire to destroy Anwar at all cost.

It started in 1998. Many, of course, remember the first sodomy allegation, but it was more than that, as Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad reminded us in his memoir: those in power tried to portray Anwar as a womaniser and Western agent.

On the other hand (and Datuk Seri Najib Razak clearly seems to believe this) some have bandied about the idea that Anwar is an Islamic extremist with links to dubious characters.

But 2010 saw the attempts to destroy Anwar reach new lows. Today will see whether Anwar will be asked to make his defence or acquitted of the second sodomy allegation. Knowing how things work in Malaysia, it will most likely be the former.

What’s ironic however is that when the prosecution appeared to have lost the plot in the case, the Datuk T “sex video” suddenly appeared, as if out of nowhere.

Sure, politics is a contact sport. It is not meant for the faint-hearted. When I joined politics I was fully aware of the challenges, even the dangers I would face. Still, I have vowed to stay a principled politician, and will never treat like with like.

I personally feel that there is nothing to be gained by calling your opponent names (like “Bliar”, “Mahazalim”, “Malaysia’s First Female PM” — the list goes on and on) or launching personal attacks (like how George W. Bush’s many critics questioned his intelligence). There’s no way Malaysia can move forward politically if both our politicians and their supporters act like a bunch of rowdy football fans all the time.

This makes the campaign against Anwar — not merely allegations but also the abuse of the courts, Parliament, the Attorney-General’s Chambers, the police, the media — in order to destroy him at the end of the day all the more distressing. Can anyone deny that what’s been happening is destroying the moral fabric of our country, and erodes the credibility of those abovementioned institutions?

When the courts no longer deliver justice, when the police act as cheap propagandists for their political masters and when the media disseminates soft-porn publications —all because of a spoilt, greedy and egotistical elite’s fear of one man — then that is a sign of how low the country is right now.

This is no exaggeration. It may sound like some fantastic, Orwellian state but all this is happening right here and right now in our Malaysia.

Why all the fuss about Anwar, you may ask? It’s because the simple truth is that Umno-BN is dead scared of the prospect of a Malay opposition leader who the public sees as potential prime minister material. Ultimately this will make Umno-BN redundant. They will do the same thing with the same level of ferocity to each and every one of the other “alternatives” to Anwar that some commentators bandy about.

But Anwar’s troubles are just one example of the terrible things that have been done to Malaysians by their state, which has become far too coercive and unaccountable lately. Look at Kugan, Teoh Beng Hock, Aminulrashid and Ahmad Sarbani Mohamed.

The tragedy is that because the system is utterly rotten, it creates its own Frankensteins — individuals or groups that act with impunity and arrogance, believing that it is in the service of some higher purpose or greater good. They believe their own propaganda or believe that since they are the system, nothing can stop them.

Now it seems like those Frankensteins think that even innocent children are fair game in their quest to retain power. Today it was Izzah’s daughter and Anwar’s granddaughter that was threatened.

My dear readers, what if tomorrow it is one of our own family members, or ourselves?

  1. #1 by negarawan on Tuesday, 17 May 2011 - 8:33 am

    The universal law of Karma will always be on the side of truth and righteousness. If there has been wrongdoing in the persecution of Anwar, those responsible will not escape the Karma they have earned. We should be at peace with this assurance. Happy Wesak Day!

  2. #2 by wanderer on Tuesday, 17 May 2011 - 9:45 am

    After 22 years rule by the man from India, UMNO have brought us to a new low in indecent and corrupted politics by faked Bumiputra and Muslim pretenders!
    UMNO/BN apologists, you have one last chance to amend your self-interest and hypocrisy. You may feel
    that you are still in the comfort zone, don’t cheat yourselves…you cannot trust scumbags and SOBs.

  3. #3 by Bigjoe on Tuesday, 17 May 2011 - 11:13 am

    The next GE campaign is simple: Save Anwar, Save Malaysia. Anwar finished, Malaysia also finished.

You must be logged in to post a comment.