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Monday, July 23, 2007

Newsflash: Police report filed against Malaysia Today

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Walski's update pre-note: Any updates will be at the end of this post

Okay, following the last post, Walski has some real news to report, for change.

Just got word from Aisehman's blog - that Raja Petra Kamaruddin, popularly abbreviated to RPK, has had a police report filed against him, or more accurately, against his website, Malaysia Today, by UMNO Information Chief, Tan Sri Muhammad Muhd Taib. Yup, the same guy who can't read a word of English when in Australia.

A quick visit to Malaysia Today confirmed this.

Image hosting by PhotobucketScreenshot from Malaysia Today, taken at 1521 hrs today.

"At 11.00am today, Umno’s Information Chief will be making a police report against Malaysia Today. The allegation is that Malaysia Today allows comments and articles that degrade Islam."
(source: Malaysia Today)

Lately, a series of thought-provoking posts by an anonymous writer with the pen-name Anti-Jihadist had been published on the site. It is quite common that whenever an Islam-based article is published, the comments get very stupid, juvenile and malicious. And Walski suspects that this is probably the reason for the police report.

Ironically, RPK and Malaysia Today have remained pretty much unscathed by the political postings. Walski also suspects that this move by UMNO is a show of muscle flexing, to support the claim by the DPM recently that Malaysia is an Islamic State.

In an Islamic State, particularly one run by UMNO, it seems that any non-officially condoned discourse on Islam must be supressed. How refreshing.
(more Islam-as-I-say-tion, in the full post)

Perhaps this is to keep the allusion alive that not only PAS can speak for Islam. To Walski, all this smacks of political intimidation, and another sign that elections are gonna happen soon. May not be August, as predicted by Kickdefella recently, but pretty soon nonetheless.

What's more dangerous, in the larger sense, is when religion and politic get mixed into a volatile cocktail, for political mindshare. And indeed, heed has to be taken, lest we follow the path of another great "Islamic" nation, Pakistan.

ABIM, and the like, can try to assure us that Malaysia will not slide down that same treacherous path all they want (as recently reported in Malaysiakini). The truth, as they say, always makes itself crystal clear. Call oneself an Islamic anything, and some kind of suppression can't be too far behind.

Freedom of Speech can be ugly, and it's a measure of a given society's maturity on how to properly counter speech we don't agree with or we don't like. Suppression is not one of those ways, and once again, UMNO leads the way to show us how juvenile we Malaysians really are.

Quite cynically, Aisehman decided to title his post "... Malaysia Today, Gone Tomorrow?" He may be more spot on than he intended. And Walski doesn't mean just the website, either.

Walski will keep a close eye on the developments surrounding this latest bit of news.

Update (@ 1804 hrs) - at present Malaysia Today appears to not be accessible. However, it's not known whether it has been shutdown, or whether it is because of the server being inundated with traffic.

Updated (@ 1617 hrs) - Other blogs reporting on this:

- Aisehman
- Bullets of Quills and Ink
- MageP's Lab
- Malaysia Buzz ** Updated **
- Sagaladoola ** Updated **
- The Malaysian
- The Sensintrovert ** Updated **
- t.he. rebel within u.s ** Updated **
- Tun Mahathir, Warisan Negara Malaysia
- Whatever

Walski's phrase credit note: The term Islam-as-I-say-tion has been borrowed from lawyer and blog activist Haris Ibrahim, from the title of one of his articles on the website The Truth Of The Matter. Haris also maintains a blog called The People's Parliament, which calls for truth, justice and better governance. Coincidentally, his latest post is actually related to the suppression that Walski talks about in this post.