Why is the Police fighting a losing war with Islamic State – has IS developed a local leadership structure in Malaysia with dedicated recruiters scouting for new recruits for the terrorist movement in Syria and Iraq?

Yesterday, the Police announced that “A civil servant said to be one of the most senior Islamic State (IS) members in Malaysia and a 29-year-old housewife who recruited a 14-year-old girl into the militant movement are among three people detained by Bukit Aman”.

The 39-year-old civil servant was arrested by the Bukit Aman Special Branch Counter-Terrorism Division in Kuala Lumpur on Monday while the housewife was picked up in Muar on Saturday.

The third suspect – a 22-year-old trader – was also arrested in Perak on Monday.

The civil servant, described by the police as “a senior IS member with direct links to Malaysians in Syria”, is believed to have used his position to recruit members to ensure the local militant network ran smoothly.

This is most shocking news. How “senior” is the civil servant who was arrested, and who are the more “senior” IS leaders in Malaysia?

Malaysia are entitled to ask: Why is the Police fighting a losing war with Islamic State – has IS developed a local leadership structure in Malaysia with dedicated recruiters scouting for new recruits for the terrorist movement in Syria and Iraq?

It would appear that while the Inspector-General of Police, Tan Sri Khalid Abu Bakar was busy fighting imaginary enemies, combing the social media and tweetering instructions to police officers in his new Sedition Unit to harass and investigate Pakatan Rakyat leaders and NGO activists, he was allowing the real enemies, the IS leaders and activists in Malaysia a field day to recruit potential terrorists for the IS atrocities in Syria and Iraq.

Do the Police know how many Malaysians have slipped through the police surveillance net to leave Malaysia to join IS in Syria and Iraq?

In July last year, the Home Minister, Datuk Seri Dr. Ahmad Zahid Hamidi gave an assurance to Malaysians that the IS threat was under control.

He said the “militant groups” were trying to band together as a single “terror coalition” but they will not succeed in Malaysia as the authorities will not allow these groups to gain a foothold in Malaysia.
In August last year, the Police said that between January and June of the year, they arrested 19 people including two women for involvement in militant activities and that at least 50 Malaysians were believed to be in Syria, fighting alongside the IS terrorists.

However, by end of January this year, support for IS terrorists have further increased, with a total of 120 people who supported IS detained in prisons in Tapah and Bentong who have to be detained in special cells to stop them from spreading their ideology and train the others to become terrorists. The authorities believed that 67 Malaysians have joined the IS cause in Syria and Iraq.

Two weeks ago, Zahid intimated that the IS was so organised in Malaysia it could plot the kidnap of wealthy tycoons and to stage bank robberies to raise funds and now, the latest revelation that the IS has advanced to new stage of structure and organisation in Malaysia with the arrest of a civil servant who is a “senior IS member”.

These are all the marks of a failed police operation to check IS from spreading its terrorist tentacles in Malaysia.

What is most galling to Malaysians is that such dismal police failures in national security is taking place when the IGP is on a frolic playing with his tweets to harass PR leaders and NGO activists in exercise of their peaceful, lawful and democratic rights to freedom of assembly and expression – giving a field day to potential terrorists who would have no qualms participating in atrocities like beheadings, crucifixions and public stonings.

The IGP must be more professional and stop his frolics with tweets and harassment of PR leaders, NGO activists and even cartoonists like Zunar and focus on the security threat posed by the IS in Malaysia.

It is deplorable that Zahid has taken the attitude that MPs should not only accept but support the proposed Prevention of Terrorism Act (Pota), “unless they want to see terrorist acts happening here”.

Zahid has no right to demand a blank cheque in the fight against IS and he should not doubt the patriotism of any MP or Malaysian who may disagree with the proposed Pota as the most effective way to fight the threat of IS terrorism.

It is premature to discuss Pota as MPs and the Malaysian public have not been given copies of the proposed Pota.

Why are MPs still denied copies of the proposed Pota when Parliament is meeting on Monday?

What Parliament should do when it reconvenes on Monday is to set up a Parliamentary Select Committee on Terrorism, which should not only oversee police efforts to fight terrorism, but should also discuss in depth the proposed Pota and present its report and recommendations before the Pota Bill is debated in Parliament.

  1. #1 by good coolie on Thursday, 5 March 2015 - 12:09 pm

    Name the top civil servant. To what Department does he belong? Sure, the government does not want to panic the people by accurately stating the threat of terrorism in Malaysia, but do you blame the public for fearing that what is being given out is but the tip of the ice-berg?

    Meanwhile the government must stop making statements that could be interpreted as support for religious extremists: one can not have one’s cake and eat it. One is either moving in one direction or the other: towards extremism or away from it. One cannot be stationary, in an ideal moderate state. That is like sitting on a motionless bicycle without its “stand” in position.

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