Tuesday, November 09, 2004

US model... Thai model...

Personally, I would have preferred a regime change in the US not because I love Kerry or hate Bush, but because I believe a change at the top echelon once every couple of years is refreshing.

Perhaps it's because I come from Malaysia where ‘leaders’ get to stay on perennially. It becomes rather sickening to see the same old faces, playing god, thinking that the country will collapse if they are not around to save it.

I yearn to see a new political system set up in Malaysia... call it the US model, or the UK model, or whatever. A two party affair, that is, cutting across ethnic lines, and focusing on national issues based on universal principles rather than on narrow tribal interests.

Many, including yours truly, hope that Anwar Ibrahim will open the doors to such a system. Let’s see.

Nearer to home, 144 academicians from 18 Thai universities issued an open letter to Thaksin Shinawatra, demanding his apology for the deaths of 78 Muslim protesters piled on army trucks by security forces in South Thailand. At this point of time, he flatly rejects their demands.

Meanwhile, can we ever envisage a similar scenario in Malaysia, whereby academicians or other interest groups come together to freely and rightfully exert their opinions on national issues, without any fear of being harassed by the ‘authorities’?

Now, that... is one pretty glaring difference between our northern neighbor and us.