I wanted to be suicide bomber: Mariam’s attacker

Or: how to find extremists everywhere

“Coming out of the mosque after the sermon, I immediately felt like becoming a suicide bomber. Very effective sermon, eh?”

Those remarkable words were stated on Friday by Zaparudin Abdul Rahim, who sells Korean apparel online, and fancies himself as a media critic. He’s now enjoying newfound fame in all leading Umno newspapers and websites for having gone to the police to accuse political commentator Mariam Mokhtar of sedition. » Sedition attack on Mariam Mokhtar by online apparel seller

He’s enjoying the publicity. “Not easy to get in the papers, you know,” he said on Facebook, after posting images of Berita Harian and Kosmo. “Frame them up, for the grandkids,” he said.

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My father, the Special Branch cop

TALES OF THE DARK DAYS – XII

A former NST reporter confronts the truth about her father and Operation Lallang

By Tracey Chin

I was in the midst of leaving Malaysia for a new life in Hong Kong when Operation Lallang happened: it did not affect my life directly then, but it was a coming-of-age for me as I confronted the truth about my father, his work and his role in it, and the ramifications on our family.

It had come at a time of personal tumult while wrapping up my life in Malaysia and leaving for a new job on a flight previously booked for Oct 28. My father almost missed my departure: we said an odd farewell at the airport, emotions kept in check, so much left unsaid.

While flying to Hong Kong, I found out about the momentous events of the previous day. Looking at the dramatic headlines and front page of The Star, I was filled with foreboding: my father was in the Special Branch and would have been a key player in the planning and execution of the arrests.

At the airport, he had been inscrutable. I realised then where my father had been in the past few days: he had almost missed my departure as he was obviously in the thick of the action.

I was shaken to the core: I saw him as an instrument for the government’s oppression and was not proud of what he had done.

The realisation was devastating: his whole life had been a blank to me, and in the past year or so while he lived with me in Taman Tun Dr Ismail after being transferred to Shah Alam for his final pre-retirement assignment, we had gone about our daily lives without any small talk about work, current affairs, or shared opinions.

My father had spent his entire working life, some 40 years from 1950, in the Special Branch, his career encompassing some of Malaysia’s definitive moments, and a major role in national security and defence.

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The day a crime reporter found his father shot

If there is one story no reporter would want to cover, it’s when something sad happens within one’s own family, particularly a violent death. Such a traumatic event did take place in the life of one of Balai Berita’s own — and it was a matter of national significance, even today, some 38 years later. Worse, it was never solved.

Najib Rahman, 2010

The date: June 7, 1974.
The reporter: Najib Abdul Rahman, son of the inspector-general of police, Tan Sri Abdul Rahman Hashim.
The place: the junction of Mountbatten Road (Jalan Tun Perak) and the narrow one-way lane (Lorong Raja Chulan) leading out from Weld Road (Jalan Raja Chulan), at the foot of Court Hill.

Najib had joined the NST in mid-1973 and as son of the IGP was, naturally, placed with the Crime Desk. A year later came the heartbreaking moment and anguish of being almost there when his father was shot dead.

Thirty-six years later, Najib wrote a poignant account of that day, raising questions still not fully answered.

A son remembers: Najib’s article in 2010

On June 7, 1974, Najib’s father had departed from his schedule. Instead of going from his official residence at Jalan Kia Peng to a police function at the Federal Hotel in Jalan Bukit Bintang, he had decided to go to the office at Bukit Aman, taking his usual route. He never arrived. Continue reading

Police collusion with anti-ABU mob?

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Police may have colluded with the mobsters who violently disrupted the ABU-Hindraf ceramah in Selangor on Saturday at which one participant was injured. Haris Ibrahim, one of the ceramah organisers, said one mobster is suspected of being a policeman in plain clothes. Later, two Special Branch officers who spoke to Haris seemed intent only on stopping the ceramah (as also demanded by the mob) and did not respond when asked if they were unable to control the mobsters.

Although the police insisted that the ceramah be stopped, some local residents, PAS members, had asked that it proceed, and said they would ensure no further disruption from the mob.


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How to keep a dictatorship in power

You need two things for a ­dictatorship to survive: propa­ganda and secret police.
Christopher H Smith
US Congressman, member of
House foreign affairs committee
quoted in the Washington Post

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