We have no issue with Chin Peng’s ashes but we do have problems with those who spread the communist ideology


I am writing to respond and rebut the article by Kua Kia Soong (KKS), “Chin Peng’s ashes and Hitler’s salutes” which appeared in the Sunday STAR Newspaper on  the 1st of Dec 2019.

On the subject of the NAZI salute by the UMS graduate during the university’s convocation I am totally in alignment with KKS.  It is unacceptable. It is imbecilic of him. That guy deserves the appropriate rebuke by the authorities, Malaysians in general and all non anti-semitic  prospective employers.

The focus of my rebuttal is KKS’s take on the “storm in an urn”, which if not rebutted and addressed, runs the risk of sowing racial discords, anxieties and mistrusts. There is a danger of it getting out of hand, generating into a real storm.

That, we Malaysian, have a duty to stop.

KKS appears to be too quick on the draw, in challenging the Police for starting an investigation.  It is obvious that he is overly anxious, to present his “machine gun” arguments in support of Chin Peng and challenging those whom he perceived, have issues with Chin Peng’s ashes.

To our understanding, the Police is just initiating an investigation. Without an investigation, how could a decision be made on the next course of action. We Malaysians, do  trust, that The Royal Malaysian Police are level headed professionals. An investigation is not an abuse of authority, nor an injustice.

To the contrary it is the right thing to do.  To the contrary, the suggestion by KKS is an act of lobbying, an act to stop or  discourage an investigation.

Preventing and trying to stop the police to execute an investigation, is clearly an abuse of process.

Do Malaysians generally have issues with the bringing back of the ashes? No, not at all.

Do right-minded Malays or Muslims object to the return of the ashes? No not really.

Go ahead, whoever you are, if you are friends or relatives of the deceased and wish to fulfill a responsibility, or promise, or to make someone’s soul be at peace.

I do not believe that right-minded Malaysians would object. Even if there are objections, they are open for reasoning.

However, the making of political statements out of the action, with the intention to provoke, to mock, to regroup, to challenge convention, to disseminate and perpetuate Chin Peng’s  ideology of Communism and to glorify the misdeeds of the CPM,  have to be challenged.  Malaysians have the responsibility and have every right to challenge and expose such intention.

The key word is IDEOLOGY.

Let us look at a series of simple Q&A to help articulate an understanding of this storm we are creating.

Do we have a problem with CP’s ashes? No.

Can we possibly forgive a dead man? Yes.

Can we accept that CPM /MPAJA was part of our history? Yes.

Should we glorify the CPM? No.

Can we reconcile with communism, the ideology he fought for? NO.

We offer no apologies to anyone for our ideological stand.

With the intent to misinform and mislead the general readers, there is the accusation of double standard and hypocrisy, against those not agreeing to KKS’s point of views. Why the double standard with Fascist Japan? Wasn’t it fascism CP was fighting against, we are asked. Aren’t those who dislike CPM and CP favouring fascism?

That is a feeble and novice attempt to corner us in the eyes of the general public. To the uninitiated,  Japan was not a fascist state.  Germany during WW2 was a fascist state. Hitler the perpetrator of the holocaust was a fascist. Historically, Japan although an ally of Germany has always been identified by historians as an imperialist state. Whatever the identification, we are categorically against fascism and  we are against imperialism too.

So why are Malaysians ready to forgive the Japanese atrocities, yet not willing to forgive the MPAJA and CP?

Then there is this narrative that mainstream Malaysia is blacking out the MPAJA and CPM. Malaysian are mature enough to accept the periods in history when the Japanese and MPAJA were players. But to us, these periods are blots, yes BLOTS or blemishes. It was in the same category as the period when Malaya was under colonial rules,  be it British,  Portuguese or Dutch rules.

So why do we single out the CPM and the Communists?

There is a simple and direct answer. it is simply because of the irreconcilable ideological difference between democracy and communism, the irreconcilable difference between Communism and Islam.

The interregnum was a blessing, an eye opener, a trial that we managed to surmount. Their  injustice, misdeeds, atrocities and misconducts experienced by Malayans, during the interregnum and the period they took up arms, accelerated the realisation by the masses of the irreconcilable difference of ideology. Malaysians are indeed lucky we do not have to go through the  experience that Cambodians went through, in particular the genocide of the Champa Malays , in the hands of CHIN PENG’s  dear comrade, POL POT and the Khmer Rouge to realise the danger of communism. The “Killing Fields” of Cambodia was genocide. It was committed by CHIN PENG’s dear comrades, Pol Pot and gang whom he visited on his way to CHINA while the genocide was unfolding. No remorse, no dissociation . (Refer his biography).

If we dwell deeper into history, in terms of historical records, the Portuguese have been said to be the most cruel conquerors, yet they too have  been forgiven. Is it due to the deep seated racism of the Malays against the Chinese? That is often the question MALAYSIANs are bombarded with by “doubt creators” alias “PENGHASUT” creating inter racial doubts and suspicions.

The answer is a big NO. It is simply about the Malays and their religion.

To understand the relationship of Malays and Islam, one perhaps can look at the greater Malay World. To understand the incompatibility of the Malays with communism, one can look at the fight of the MOROS, the Malays of the Philippines,  against  the Spanish,  who  confronted the Muslims of the Philippines with INQUISITION or forced conversion of Muslims to Catholicism. The word is CONFRONTATION, and Malays hate confrontation.

While the Moors  of ANDALUSIA, the present day Spain, gave up the fight after a few decades, there are still Muslims of the Philippines , whom the Spanish referred to as MOROS  after the MOORS of ANDALUSIA, who are still up in arms, against institutionalised Catholicism in the form of the Government  of the Philippines. That is indeed a simplistic example of an ideological and religious confrontation in the the Greater Malay World. Only when President Duterte adopts a strategy of non/confrontation, peace is coming to the Southern Philippines.

I hope KKS and the gang do take note of this 600 years of conflict, the longest conflict in history. To Malaysians in general and students of the Malay World, the study of the Moros could perhaps give a deeper understanding of this relationship between Islam and the Malays.

History is full of “what ifs”. It could have been a different story if the CPM laid down their arms upon MERDEKA. It could be a different course of history  had the Baling talk been a success. It would certainly be a  different story,  if CP and his gang pledged allegiance to Malaya after Merdeka or later after the formation of Malaysia.

Would there be a genocide of anti communist MALAYSIANs, similar to the one in Cambodia by Pol Pot and the Khmer Rouge had the CPM and CP had their way? I’m afraid that, there could have been one.

The article by KKS insinuates that Malaysians (read Malays)  who are rejecting reconciliations with the mainly Chinese communists, yet ready to be pally-pally with the Japanese are inherently hypocrites, racist and fascists, Such insinuation is outright irresponsible. Indeed that is not the first time, the word fascism has been bandied around against the Malays and MALAYSIANs who are not in alignment with the self proclaimed “revolutionaries, Liberals and reformists”

This irreconcilable ideological difference has nothing to do with being Chinese or Malays or Indians or Kadazans and Ibans.

We only reject those who try to glorify what was once the enemy of the state, those who wish to perpetuate and disseminate the communist ideology. What more, if the actions can be construed as to serve the interests of foreign countries. Period.

As a veteran, I find it insulting to the Malaysian Military, that KKS is subtly suggesting a decoration for CP. His arguments that even the  Queen decorated CP for his contribution is oulandish. Let us be clear. CP contributed to Imperialist British narrow interests during the Japanese occupation of Malaya.

If there were to be an appropriate decoration for CP, it should have come from CHINA or the Communist Party of CHINA, the country he was prepared to die for, the international ideology he wanted to spread. (Ref CP’s biography)

I hereby call upon the Veterans Associations and the Minister of Defence to issue a statement to rebuke such a suggestion. The airwaves are chocker-blocked with such narratives. I implore pro democracy MALAYSIANs , veterans and ex-service personnel and the Police, to challenge and rebut any intent to glorify the CPM. We have to say out loud our stand. We must not allow the narratives, like that  of KKS’s, to be mainstream. We must not allow such narrative to have a monopoly of the air waves and social media.

In closing, let it be known to all Malaysians, the fight against communist ideology is not about Malay versus Chinese or racial differences. It is about ideological differences. The ideology is just irreconcilable with our constitution, which uphold democracy.

We are against any ideology that is contrarian to Islam, to our Rukun Negara, to our belief systems and way of life.

That last statement applies equally to ISIS or LTTE.

Lt Cdr  (Rtd) Ir Esham Salam

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