Archive for February 1st, 2017

How the travel crackdown is affecting North American debate on Islam

Feb 1st 2017

Why Muslim pundits feel let down

AMIR AHMAD NASR is about as pro-Western as anyone born deep inside the world of Islam could possibly be. Born to Sudanese parents whose professional lives took them to many countries, he is bilingual in Arabic and American English. He believes passionately in liberal democracy and the free exchange of ideas. He has no patience with those who think that authoritarian systems of government, whether secular or Islamist, are better suited to certain countries. The globe-trotting author and digital activist has recently settled, gratefully, in Canada.

Mr Nasr used his Western freedom to do something that he could not have managed if he were still living in the Islamic heartland. With disarming humour, he described his own spiritual path in a successful book with an almost self-explanatory title, “My Islam: How Fundamentalism Stole My Mind and Doubt Freed My Soul”. This recounts how he went through a phase of believing not only in Islam’s literal truth but in the duty to despise people outside the tent of strict Sunni orthodoxy, and then his evolution through many stages into what he calls himself now: a cultural Muslim and spiritual humanist. Read the rest of this entry »


Save Malaysia Roundtable on Tunku’s 114th birthday anniversary next week best forum for Najib to start process to free Malaysia from the millstone of global kleptocracy

The Save Malaysia Roundtable of political and civil society leaders to save Malaysia from global kleptocracy and a failed and rogue state on Tunku’s 114th birthday anniversary in Kuala Lumpur next week is the best forum for the Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Najib Razak and his Cabinet to start the process to free Malaysia from the millstone of global kleptocracy.

This will make the Save Malaysia Roundtable doubly significant, not only on the occasion of the114th birthday anniversary of Bapa Malaysia, but to send out the clear message that the 2017 Chinese New Year of the Fire Rooster will be the only kleptocratic Chinese New Year in the history of Malaysia and that in the next year, the Chinese New Year and other national festivities would not be celebrated under a cloud of global kleptocracy!

Almost everybody is saying that it is impossible that Najib will attend the Save Malaysia Roundtable.

I agree that it appears to be quite inconceivable that Najib would attend the Save Malaysia Roundtable to save Malaysia from global kleptocracy and a failed and rogue state, as it would involve Najib’s preparedness – not seen up to now – to open up the international multi-billion dollar 1MDB kleptocratic money-laundering scandal to national and international scrutiny to prove that it is not a scandal at all, although the 1MDB scandal is making international waves and world headlines almost every other day.

The issue is whether Najib and his Cabinet are prepared to start the process to free Malaysia from the millstone of global kleptocracy, or whether they will go down in history as being responsible for Malaysia’s millstone of global kleptocracy and not prepared to do anything to remove such a millstone. Read the rest of this entry »

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Najib’s Window Dressing Can’t Hide Malaysia’s Woes

By Luke Hunt
The Diplomat
January 31, 2017

The embattled premier’s cosmetic measures cannot conceal economic realities in the country.

The Malaysian economy has been put through the hoops. In spite of reassurances from the country’s beleaguered premier Najib Razak that the current economic turbulence is only a temporary affair caused by offshore factors, the evidence does point to the contrary.

Najib’s government knows this. It has side-stepped long-held promises to win Malaysia recognition as a developed country by 2020. And it has announced a string of statements and measures designed to either distract from these economic realities or aim to address them.

One revenue-raising initiative announced was charging Thai vehicles a fee for simply crossing their land border. That move has angered the Thai transport ministry which is now mulling a reciprocal tax. Read the rest of this entry »