Friday, March 11, 2011
Mahathir’s Memoir - Being A Haunting of Old Buddies, Jekyll and Hyde
Mahathir opened Pandora’s Box upon himself. Seeking to have his last say no matter what, the ex-premier, riding on a wave of a popularity-comeback, the man, in his 800-pages plus memoir, is shown in the early reactions to the book as nasty.
It’s only been three days since he launched the great book and 5,000 copies had flown off the shelves.
Early reactions are making the monumental work like it’s entitled, A Doctor in a Haunted House - Memoirs of a Jekyll seeking for a place to Hyde.
He asked for it. From the reactions, Mahathir Mohamed, the doctor and long time premier (he stayed all of 22 years at the helm), apparently wants to be best remembered as a pugilist, squeezing into history a wondrous storm to batter him so the adrenaline will keep flowing in his twilight days. He is 86.
He wrote into his memoirs a series of nasty remarks and accounts of persons he had undone and those he crossed swords with to provide for him a clean bill of health.
Hundreds have not agreed with the one-eyed. The numbers will pile into the thousands within a month.
It’s the view of the personality from his lofty perch, his nest, that’s now being bombarded, the bombardment stretching into a force of willful destruction of Mahathir’s version by a popular force that wants history to reflect the people’s perceptions.
While Mahathir spent 20 pages of his book on his decision to sack and clobber Anwar Ibrahim on the basis of the dubious allegations of Umi Hafilda, most of the people simply saw Anwar as one of his rivals he clobbered to stay on as premier.
Anwar, he had written in his memoir, had asked four women for sex, two of whom said ‘no’ while the other two undressed.
That was according to Umi Hafilda, the sister of Anwar’s former confidential secretary who is now number two in the wracked Parti Keadilan Rakyat (PKR).
Umi Hafilda was featured in the recent twin by-elections, in Merlimau and Kerdau.
She was reported to have attracted large crowds, which she can, dragging sibling-rivalry sensationally through the mud and revealing succulent sexual stories about Anwar Ibrahim.
But that’s where Umi comes and goes, herself not a likely candidate for any virtue.
Anwar fumed. Still in court in a second leg of the sodomy charges, he combusted in Banting last night (10 March) and reached for Mahathir’s throat in an exchange of libelous and sub judicial remarks for a slanderous tirade, like Alladin’s bargain of the old lamp for new.
The storm has begun. The opposition pact requires unification, uniformity and unity. Now it can embark on a recall of the Free Anwar Campaign.
In court the last prosecution witness, a senior police officer, divulged the surprising detail that Saiful Bukhari, who is the man Anwar was alleged to have sodomized, had run to Najib’s wife first, and not directly to the Prime Minister as we have been made to believe before.
It’s a very small detail for the pact to ride on.
Saiful, it appeared, had had the DNA of several men in his anus. A scientist had speculated in court that it could have happened when the man sat on a toilet bowl. Take care!
Reactions to the earth-shaking memoir and the trial in court are happening as the world is going upside down, making Malaysia politically dicey.
China suddenly sprung a USD 7.3 billion trade deficit in February, said to be caused by the volatile prices of oil because of the “democratic revolts” in the Middle East and North Africa (Mena).
That revolt has become a civil war in Libya and in Bahrain Sunnis battle Shiahs on the streets.
The regional revolution is scheduled to happen in Saudi Arabia today (11 March). It’s the largest oil producer.
In Egypt the revolution has wound its way into Muslim-Christian unrest. Some 2.4 million barrels of oil run through the Suez-Mediterranean pipeline per day.
If China can fall into a trade deficit following a simmering oil threat, what will happen should oil prices surge to frightening heights will certainly be the Chinese economic crisis that’s predicted to happen in four years time.
Muslim violence against minorities has spread from Nigeria, Somalia and Egypt to Iraq, Afghanistan, Pakistan and to Indonesia.
The environment could not have been more exciting for Mahathir to launch his exorcism.
People are waiting for the reactions of Razaleigh and Musa, the duo that teamed to challenge Mahathir for the leadership of Umno in 1987 and lost by 43 votes.
Of Razaleigh, the affable prince from Kelantan, Mahathir had said he sploshed more than Ringgit 20 million of his own money into the 1987 contest, an allegation most people in Umno can hardly believe.
In fact, about a couple of weeks before the contest, Marina Yusof and the writer together told Razaleigh to quit, seeing he would lose by a count of 26 votes at that point of time.
Votes are countables and we can know from the bundle of reports that had come in. Ibrahim Ali was the director of Razaleigh’s campaign for the 1987 contest. He too said Razaleigh would lose by such a slim margin.
Later some Umno members suggested to Razaleigh to purchase the required votes and he flatly refused.
Razaleigh and Musa are not the end of the complainants. Mahathir has asked for a tsunami to engulf him. The raving reviews are merely a preface.
In the given circumstances people he rubbed would throttle the godfather for a joyride that can be politically profitable.
If the forces are strong enough, the guards will change and heads may be made to roll at high speed, like in pinball. Najib, as premier, will have to keep himself at a safe distance. --- a. ghani ismail, 11 March 2011