I was born on the prairies, where the wind blew free and there was nothing to break the light of the sun. I was born where there were no enclosures. [GERONIMO]
Tuesday, April 12, 2011
The Romance of The Three Kingdoms in Sarawak
I have always love the war epics from Chinese classics such as The Water Margin, The Three Kingdoms and the Red Cliff (which is one part of the story from The Three Kingdoms). All three (and many more which I am not familiar with) focus mainly on strategic planning before the start of each battle. One of the Christmas presents I received from my kids was the box set of the HD version of The Three Kingdoms screened recently on ASTRO. There were 96 episodes in all and since it is a kind of a "male thing", only four females appeared in the entire series. Historical names such as Cao Cao, Yuan Shu, Liu Bei, Guan Ye and Zhang Fei take centre stage, but each battle would not have been successful if not for strategists like Zhuge Liang and his antagonist, Sima Yi. From the word "Go", it was like a game of chess, on who is better at outwitting the others. Now we come to the Sarawak state elections.
War drums are sounding loud and clear and banners unfurled in the battlefield for Sarawak.
Without being overly dramatic, the situation is truly not far from the scenes depicted in Chinese novel War of the 3 Kingdoms - with DAP fighting a bloody and brutal battle against George Chan's SUPP and Taib Mahmud's BN.
Prime Minister Najib Razak too has joined the battle as it is obvious that long-time BN stalwart SUPP is now fighting for its life against the Pakatan Rakyat's DAP.
The SUPP and DAP are going head to head in the Chinese-dominated urban areas, with the heaviest artillery fire ongoing in these areas:-
1. Pending (Violet Yong of DAP vs Dr Sim Kui Hian of SUPP) 2. Kota Sentosa (Chong Chieng Jen of DAP vs Alfred Yap of SUPP) 3. Batu Kawah (Christina Chiew of DAP vs Tan Joo Phoi of SUPP) 4. Bukit Assek (Wong Ho Leng of DAP vs Chieng Huong Toon of SUPP) 5. Bawang Assan (Alice Lau of DAP vs Wong Soon Koh of SUPP) 6. Piasau (Ling Sie Kiong of DAP vs George Chan of SUPP)
Of Palace intrigues and evil viceroys
Najib, his deputy Muhyiddin Yassin and Sarawak Chief Minister Taib Mahmud have urged the voters to reject DAP because they say DAP is intent on building a Chinese dynasty that will bully and ostracize the other races.
They also claim DAP had just as many old and decrepit leaders who refuse to step down like Lim Kit Siang and Karpal Singh. BN leaders also insist that DAP's election promises were just "empty rhetoric" and DAP's fire and brimstone ceramahs lacked "real substance".
"Chinese voters can see that it is the BN leaders who are spewing hot air as BN leaders have not changed anything in Sarawak for 48 years. BN is having a tough time convincing the Chinese in Sarawak who are now demanding that it is time to change. It is BN who is talking a lot but not instituting any changes," said DAP MP for Seremban John Fernandez told Malaysia Chronicle.
He pointed to recent and horrific death of senior Customs officer in MACC premises in Kuala Lumpur. Slthough, it had nothing to do with the Sarawak polls, the Chinese can see that Najib is "not running the country properly", Fernandez said.
The Chinese voters also saw Pakatan Rakyat leader Anwar Ibrahim as being victimised and they feel sympathy for him. In the coffeeshops of the big cities in Sarawak, the Chinese believe that BN is plotting and scheming to topple Anwar to stay in power and to continue in their corrupt activities.
The Chinese love to read novels of war and intrigue and these Umno plots and manipulations remind them of those in the Emperor's court during the era of the dynasties where evil Viceroys are always lurking in the shadows waiting to frame and victimize a good military general who is loyal to the Emperor.
Listen to the Hornbill
Meanwhile, out of the 15 seats which DAP is contesting, Simanggang, Meradong and Kidurong are Iban-majority while Bukit Kota is Malay-Melanau-majority. The rest of the 11 seats have at least 50% Chinese voters. The other seats are Padungan, Repok, Dudong,Pelawan and Pujut. Malaysia Chronicle also spoke to DAP's Skudai state assemblyman, Dr Boo Cheng Hau, for his news of the campaign. Dr Boo has been camping out in the East Malaysian state for days now.
According to him, DAP secretary-general Lim Guan Eng's success in Penang has been noted by the Sarawak Chinese. The fact that DAP still has old guards like Lim Kit Siang and Karpal Singh does not matter as they are not helming the nation and siphoning out the nation's wealth as what Taib, Najib and the Umno have been accused of doing.
"BN leaders have no more ammo with which they can attack DAP," said Dr Boo.
With polling scheduled to take place on Saturday, the last 3 days namely, 13th, 14th and 15th will be the most crucial.
In the meantime, Ubah the DAP's mascot Hornbill is swooping all over Sarawak announcing that the time for change has come. Will Sarawak listen to the clarion call of its own special bird?