Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Dogs Steal Glasgow Show

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Squash queen Nicol David (above pic, front left) was the flag bearer for the Asian countries at the Commonwealth Games Opening Ceremony in Glasgow on July 23, 2014. She was given the honor of leading out the eight Asian countries during the said event – besides Malaysia, the others in the Asian contingent under the Commonwealth Games Federation are India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, Maldives, Singapore and Brunei.
But she wasn’t the star. And it wasn't Susan Boyle, the Queen or Rod Stewart's metallic suit either. Rather the four-legged types were the ones which stole the show that Wednesday. I was referring to the Scottish Highland terriers – all forty-one of them – which graced the said event. They all wore tartan dog coats with the name of each participating country team on them. They were brought in to introduce each of the 71 participating nations in the athletes' parade. Some of them even had to work a double shift.
And these dogs were accompanied by a Scots man or woman in tweeds. Check out the photos below:


Social media went wild for the tartan coat-sporting Scottie dogs, with many claiming them to be the highlight of Celtic Park.
Regrettably, they had earned the ire of some people from one country! Yup, you guessed it – Malaysia!
UK’s Daily Telegraph (July 28, 2014) reported that PAS deputy president, Mat Sabu had demanded an apology and said the dogs were 'disrespectful' to Muslims, especially as it happened during Ramadan.
Perkasa’s Ibrahim Ali also called for an apology. "I think it is unbecoming. The hosts have not been sensitive enough – especially in a so-called knowledgeable and civilized society like Britain," he said. "It is shameful and has offended not only Malaysia as a Muslim country, but Muslims around the world."
However, a Glasgow C-Games 2014 spokesperson said there has been no complaints about the dogs from any of the countries taking part. Shame on these blinkered Malaysians!

PAS Ponder Power Grab in Selangor



Malaysian Chronicle, July 29, 2014
A leaked screenshot (above pic) of a conversation on the instant messaging application WhatsApp is fomenting turmoil in Pakatan Rakyat. It may even precipitate the break-up of PR. It indicates that PAS central committee leaders have been actively contemplating abandoning PR and discussing possible plans post-PR.

In one scenario, PAS research centre operations director Dr Mohd Zuhdi Marzuki (left) had stated that if PAS were to leave PR and join forces with UMNO, they will keep Selangor and Khalid Ibrahim still remains as menteri besar. All they require is another ADUN from PKR to cross over to PAS-UMNO and they will command a simple majority – meaning they can form the state government.
If that did not cause enough hurt, Zuhdi flaunted his Malay-Muslim chauvinism – he commented that his scenario would return political dominance to the Malays and that they could negate "DAP and non-Muslims”. Or as he put it "...we can just swat them away".
It looks like PAS is about to double-cross their PR allies. In spite of their Islamic values, they seem ready to embrace betrayal and treachery. I hope I am wrong – it will be disappointing to see PAS prostituting themselves to become very much like corrupt UMNO!

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Nicol David Wins C-Games Gold

Another piece of good advice.
Nicol David won Malaysia's second Commonwealth Games gold medal in emphatic fashion when she routed England world champion Laura Massaro on Monday, 12-10, 11-2, 11-5 in a one-sided final which lasted just 44 minutes.


Together in Grief


At an interfaith prayer session held last Friday at the Malaysia Airlines Academy in Kelana Jaya, Malaysia Airlines staff paid tribute to colleagues who had perished.
MH17 & MH370: The twin tragedies that claimed the lives of twenty-seven Malaysia Airlines crew.
I understand their feelings. Anguish. Distress. Pain.
I know their feelings. Sorrow. Sadness. Suffering.
I feel what they feel. Weep woefully. Cry copiously. Together, we mourn.



The Malaysian Insider pic, July 28, 2014
But, when there are no more tears to be shed, they must be strong.
When they don't think they can, hold on!
Courage isn't about having the strength to go on; it is going on when you don't have the strength.

Monday, July 28, 2014

Nicol David in C-Games Women's Squash Final

This is good advice.

Malaysia’s Nicol David will face England’s Laura Massaro in the final of the Commonwealth Games women’s squash event.
In the semi-finals, reigning champion and world number one David triumphed over New Zealand’s Joelle King (World No. 4) in three games (11-6, 11-8 11-5) while world champion Massaro, beat fellow Englishwoman Alison Waters in four games (11-5, 12-14, 11-3, 11-8).
Compatriot Low Wee Wern was stopped in the quarter-finals when she lost to Massaro in 3 games.
In case, you didn’t know, the 2014 Commonwealth Games (officially the XX Commonwealth Games) are being held in Glasgow, Scotland, from July 23 to August 03, 2014. It is the largest multi-sport event ever held in Scotland with nearly 5,000 athletes from 71 different nations and territories competing in 17 different sports. [Scotland had previously hosted the 1970 and 1986 Commonwealth Games in Edinburgh]

Najib Razak: Negotiator Extraordinaire

Unlike the stinging barrage of stabbing criticisms that Najib Razak (left) found himself to be at the receiving end as a result of the fallout from MH370 this time insofar as MH17 is concerned, he is standing tall.
I am ready to give credit to Najib when credit is due. And I’m sure many Malaysians are ostensibly proud that our Prime Minister’s hush-hush phone diplomacy had been successful. On two occasions.
First instance, the 3-point agreement allowed us to get back MH17’s black boxes (one containing the flight data recorder and the other the cockpit voice recorder) – and which was surrendered to Malaysian investigators in the rebel stronghold of Donetsk on Monday; to retrieve victims’ bodies; and to let independent international investigators gain access to the disaster site.
(So far, the last item has not been fulfilled. The investigators have not been able to collect evidence due to on-going security concerns)
Pro-Moscow rebels displayed the flight recorders from the downed MH17 at a news conference with a Malaysian government delegation sent by Najib. Credit Robert Ghement/European Pressphoto Agency
As for the recovery of bodies, confusion still surrounds how many have been reclaimed. Pro-Moscow separatists mentioned handing over 282 bodies and more than 80 body parts, but Dutch officials estimate the tally to be far lower (The Telegraph, UK, July 23, 2014). The Malaysian Insider had mentioned 227 coffins and it gave credit to the Malaysian investigation team for the successful recovery of the remains of MH17 victims (July 28, 2014).
Second instance, permission for a multinational police force to enter the crash site of MH17 has been granted.
But fighting in and around the area between rebels and Ukrainian government forces is preventing it from happening. At the moment. Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte has ruled out a military mission describing it as “unrealistic”. He knows that he would need Ukrainian government support – the hitch is Najib only talked to the enemy!
I am sure our Malaysian Prime Minister feels otherwise. He know best. After all, Najib is smart. He didn’t negotiate with the Ukrainian government because he believed the rebels are the ones who are in control there, even if it is Ukrainian territory. Kiev is not in Najib's equation.
Besides, there’s no urgency anyway. Sixty-eight Malaysian police personnel will leave Kuala Lumpur for the crash site only on Wednesday as part of the international deployment. This is in spite of the fact that Dutch soldiers are ready and Australia says it already has 90 police in Europe ready to deploy.
In the meantime, there is fighting. The Ukrainian government said its forces are advancing towards the crash site to try to free it from the rebels, who have impeded the work of international monitors and whom Kiev accuses of tampering with evidence pointing to who shot it down.
At home, I am sure Najib is proud of himself. And he has been abundantly praised too. But are we missing the point here? He had cleverly reached out to Ukrainian separatists!
And Najib negotiated directly with rebel leader Alexander Borodai, the self-proclaimed prime minister of the Donetsk People's Republic.
This has prompted disquiet about whether the prime minister had lent unwarranted legitimacy to a man the Ukrainian government has condemned as a terrorist.
According to The New York Times, the Malaysian delegation in Ukraine has incurred the anger of many Ukrainians by using the honorific “his excellency” in referring to Borodai, who styles himself the leader of a breakaway republic. But, at least in public, Najib has not used the term, referring to the rebel leader only as “Mr. Borodai” (July 23, 2014).
And in case, there are sceptics amongst us who do not have the decency to acknowledge Najib’s contribution, it must be said that he did not make any concessions. Najib’s arrangements with Borodai did not contain any promise of formal diplomatic recognition or payment to the pro-Russian separatists in eastern Ukraine. Or so we have been told.
All hail Najib Razak, negotiator extraordinaire!

Salam Aidilfitri 2014

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Here’s wishing all Malaysian Muslims and Muslims the world over Eid ul-Fitr or as we Malaysians refer it as “Selamat Hari Raya”!