One could have dismissed the protest with a laugh except that the students had the backing of PAS.
On Wednesday, PAS Youth chief Mahfuz
Omar expressed support for the call to ban the concerts, saying programmes which could bring unsuitable behaviour must be stopped.
The MP for Pokok Sena, who had previously espoused freedom of speech,
suddenly wanted the Government to “censor''
programmes which might lead to unwarranted
On the same day, the PAS-led Terengganu
government announced it was going ahead
with its plans to ban unisex hair salons.
State Executive Councillor Wan Abdul
Muttalib Embong said hair salon operators had until the end of the year to comply
with the regulations or face the
On Thursday, an annoucement was already posted on the Laman Reformasi website
urging students to gather at Universiti
Malaya for the illegal assembly.
While some may talk about the right to
stage a peaceful protest, they should be
made aware of the language used in the
The message urged students with semangat jihad (holy war spirit) to gather for
the protest and that andaikan kita
terkorban nanti, percayalah syahid
menanti kita (if we die, then heaven
It continued that the protest was necessary because demi maruah Islam,
dengan darah kami terkorban (for the
sake of Islam's dignity, our blood should be sacrified).
These battle cries can be easily dismissed
as mere rhetoric but in the wake of a hate campaign against the Government, this show of anger should be taken
Members of the Al-Ma'unah deviantionist
group, for example, had attempted to blow up the Carlsberg brewery in Shah Alam on July 3. A similar attempt was made at
the Batu Caves Indian temple.
Such signs of intolerance and insensitivity
by certain groups, in the name of religion, are disturbing.
PAS and its supporters have shown that
they want to play moral guardians by imposing their values on other
Young minds have been encouraged to hate
the government in the name of restoring justice and democracy.
Yet, when PAS gained power in two states,
religious authocracy is imposed on others.
The greatest crime, however, is to help the
Islamist party become stronger.
The DAP, for example, has tried hard to
present PAS as a tolerant party purportedly good for democracy. For the sake of
political expediency, it has appealed to
the Chinese community to give PAS a
chance despite the inherent
At the same time, the DAP has been forced
to come out with embarrassing press statements to dissociate itself from
the extremism of PAS.
Last week, DAP secretary-general Kerk
Kim Hock placed on record its objection
against the call to ban the pop concerts and unisex hair salons.
Before that, Kerk, the MP for Kota Melaka, had to say the party believed that
the arms heist was not staged as alleged
by others in the opposition front.
PAS leaders, particularly Kelantan Mentri
Besar Datuk Nik Aziz Nik Mat, had described the incident as a sandiwara
Kerk obviously understood the sentiments
of non-Muslims. It would have been political suicide had the DAP maintained its silence when the MCA has spoken up strongly.
The strength of the DAP has eroded since
its partnership with PAS in last year's general election. It refuses to
cut the link despite strong reservations at grassroots level and even among some top leaders.
The continued relationship will only hurt
the DAP further because PAS will never
change its policies.
Some may question the Government for
linking PAS with the Al Ma'unah group but no one can deny that the deviants were strong supporters.
Terengganu PAS has confirmed that one of
those involved in the standoff was an active division Youth leader.
The Pagoh PAS division of Johor confirmed on Friday that its branch in Kampung
Batu 28 was headed by a Al Ma'unah
follower. The former soldier had also acted as a polling agent for PAS in last year's
These admissions have been made by PAS
grassroots leaders themselves. There is no reason not to believe the PAS link.
The political trend in Malaysia is worrying
as opposing sides step up their animosity.
Although the elections have just been concluded, there appears to be a refusal
on the part of the losers to accept the
Knowing that the Government has a credibility problem, the Opposition has
questioned and planted doubts even in clear-cut
There is no longer a grey area. Some academicians, who teach students to
question the Government, readily accept
information from the Opposition as the
If PAS speaks of a conspiracy theory, then
it must be so. No thought is given to the fact that these persons are also politicians
The reformasi websites, for example, have
urged its supporters to take to the streets again on Aug 4 when the court delivers
its verdict on the sodomy case against
Datuk Seri Amwar Ibrahim.
Disenchanted Malaysians should not let
their emotions cloud their sentiments by
There is no place for anarchy, extremism
and the politics of hatred in Malaysia.