Sunday, December 2, 2012

US ‘irregular ops’ in the Malaysian context
Jordan MacVay, Malaysia Mole, Dec 1 2012
While many critics of the Malaysian government dismiss its suspicion of foreign-funded civil society groups as “a desperate attempt to stifle dissent and attack civil society,” a Malaysia-based foreign journalist says there is a sound reason to perceive foreign-funded rights advocacy groups as possible threats. Writing for Mathaba, Nile Bowie claimed the existence of a secret US government document which describes how the US interferes in other countries’ political affairs in order to align them to its own interests. In a Nov 23 article entitledMalaysia: Victim of US ‘Irregular Warfare’ Ops, Bowie quotes Christof Lehmann:
This document is a step-by-step guide to how to create, manipulate, co-opt and make use of a country’s population, persons of special interest inside the country as well as expatriates, organizations inside as well as outside the country, towards a subversion. Beginning with manipulating dissent into demonstrations, the polarization of a population, riots and armed insurgencies that require action by security forces, and psychological warfare by means of media, step by step, in logical sequence, towards a full scale war, based on humanitarian principles and the pretext of bringing democracy and freedom.
States that will not align themselves with US interests are infiltrated in phases, Bowie said, beginning with the use of “foreign-funded dissident news media organizations” to influence the population. Further infiltration includes the provision of training and equipment to dissident groups, with the final aim being a transition to a government which will be more compliant with US diplomatic and economic interests. Bowie cited Libya and Syria as countries in which the model laid out in the document was used successfully. He said:
The ‘Phases of Unconventional Warfare’ described in the manual exactly match the US protocol undertaken in both Libya and Syria. While Malaysia is very different from Syria and Libya, the agitation Malaysia has experienced is not intended to promote a genuine democratic framework. Its purpose is the gradual installation of a national government that is friendly to US interests by coaxing social unrest and shaping popular sentiment. Evidence of such tactics can be seen in the activities of several foreign organisations in Malaysia, including the US-based National Democratic Institute and George Soros’ Open Society Institute, which have both funded Malaysian elections watchdog Bersih; the National Endowment for Democracy, which provides funding to human rights group SUARAM and pro-opposition news website Malaysiakini; and the International Republican Institute, chaired by John McCain, an ardent supporter of USraeli militarism, which receives funding from the NED for its activities in Malaysia.
Although the Najib Razak administration has begun to move away from Mahathir’s administrative model by relaxing controls on expression, many still feel more can be done. The authorities have acknowledged that more could be done to reduce voting irregularities, and have begun to work toward such ends. To accuse Malaysia’s electoral system of being illegitimate is a cinematic exaggeration, a myth pushed by foul Western endowments and foundations. If the US is pursuing the kind of policy described in the Unconventional Warfare manual, one can understand how foreign-funded rights advocacy groups may be perceived as threatening to Malaysian authorities, regardless of the politics and values they preach.
Pro-Israel groups rooting for the opposition
Jordan MacVay, Malaysia Mole, Dec 1 2012
Amid news on Malaysian NGOs receiving foreign funds, Nile Bowie wrote on the involvement of pro-Israeli organisations with Malaysia’s opposition coalition. In an in-depth report, the Kuala Lumpur-based blogger wrote on how these foreign funds is a way for the infiltration of US interests. Bowie wrote:
As the US continues to militarily increase its presence in the Pacific region inline with its strategic policy shift to East Asia, Washington’s leaders would like to see compliant heads of state who will act to further US interests in the ASEAN region.
While allegations of corruption and economic mismanagement hinder the credibility of current PM Najib Razak, foreign organizations affiliated with AIPAC and funded by the US government have contributed support toward bolstering the influence and status of Malaysia’s opposition groups, in addition to the controversial Bersih coalition for electoral reform, led by Ambiga Sreenevasan, who admitted that two US organisations, the National Democratic Institute and the Open Society Institute, funded Bersih but for other projects unrelated to the Jul 9 march. Soros founded the Open Society Institute in 1993, whose principle aim sought to “strengthen open society principles and practices against authoritarian regimes and the negative consequences of globalization,” with an emphasis on countries in transition from communism after the fall of the Soviet Union. Former US Sec State Madeline Albright chairs the National Democratic Institute, while its president Kenneth Wollack served as the legislative director of AIPAC. Bowie writes:
Although the organization boasts of “promoting democracy” and “fortifying civil society” around the world, these tired euphemisms have been used in numerous countries to mask funding to various political forces opposed to their national governments and aligned with US interests. In addition to providing funding to the Bersih coalition through the National Democratic Institute, the National Endowment for Democracy’s Malaysian operation provided $100k for political news website Malaysiakini, considered to be the nation’s most pro-opposition news outlet. NED also provided $90k to SUARAM, an organization promoting human rights. The most significant recipient of NED’s Malaysia programs is the International Republican Institute, which receives $802,122/yr and is tasked to “work with state leaders in Penang and Selangor to provide them with public opinion research, training and other resources to enable them to be more effective representatives of their constituents.” Penang and Selangor are strongholds of the opposition coalition led by Anwar Ibrahim. It comes as little surprise that Ibrahim talks boldly of a “Malaysian Spring,” as the same organizations bolstering the opposition in Kuala Lumpur have successfully fomented events that led to the series of uprisings across the Arab World in 2011.
Anwar Ibrahim maintains close ties with senior US officials and organizations such as the National Endowment for Democracy. In Jul 2006, Ibrahim chaired the Washington-based Foundation for the Future, established and funded by the US State Dept at the behest of Elizabeth Cheney, whose father was recently convicted in absentia for war crimes for his issuance of torture during the Iraq war by Kuala Lumpur War Crimes Commission, chaired by former Malaysian PM Mahathir Mohamed. In 2007, Ibrahim was a panelist at the National Endowment for Democracy’s “Democracy Award” event in Washington. These questionable affiliations raise strong concerns over the legitimacy of the candidate and the administration he would lead if winning the 13th General Election.

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