Sometimes we forget that Anwar Ibrahim (DSAI) was once a minister in Dr Mahathir Mohamad’s cabinet. He was one of, if not the leading, exponents of Umno politics, as we know it today bar probably Mahathir himself.
He was as good as, if not better than Daim Zainuddin, in putting together that heady mix of politics, power and money to benefit him and those that surround him.
DSAI was better at doing this than KJ (Khairy Jamaluddin), better than (Prime Minister) Najib (Tun Razak) and indeed better than Khir Toyo or any one you would care to mention within the ambit of Barisan Nasional (BN) or Umno but alas, Mahathir cast him aside once convenient allies within Umno became his sworn enemies.
DSAI has not changed. Time has imposed upon DSAI the realities of the present.
He is without real power, without real money and, by extension, without “real” friends – for in politics only money can buy you “real friends”. He must make do with what he has now.
And yet he has done well for himself.
Suffice to say that he has been able to forge a credible opposition and reached his zenith with the incredible results of the 12th general election where Pakatan Rakyat was able, for the first time, to deny BN its two-thirds majority.
He now is the leader of the opposition.
Politics in a shambles
But sadly DSAI cannot see the trees for the forest. Three years in politics at national level is a long, long time to do good or otherwise.
There is no need to go into the details but today DSAI is no longer the DSAI we know pre-12th general election.
By his own doing, the indirect benefits to Najib and Umno of having DSAI lead Pakatan Rakyat far exceeds the direct benefits that DSAI’s leadership gives to Pakatan!
And none more so than the debilitating new sodomy trial that is in its last stages of rigor mortis – for DSAI and for Najib.
Najib, too, has his credibility problems within Umno and with the people that will decide his fate at the 13th general election.
How either of them could have allowed this to be the case is a sad reflection of the state of our country’s politics and the calibre of the two leaders of the government and the opposition.
A shambles of historic proportions. DSAI for letting himself to be entrapped into a situation he should be all too familiar with, given what happened many years ago, and Najib for allowing political expediency and self-interest to overcome decency and good taste.
And if our leaders are prepared to go to these extent to try and hold on to power and what power brings to them, then how do they expect the people of whom they are leaders of, to behave?
More lies and gutter politics
What is worrying is this: our leaders and our people are now settling into an ever-lowering level of expectations of each other.
Each new day brings more gutter politics and more lies from our political leaders as they try to hold on to power.
The people desperately look for excuses and rationale to allow them to still vote for these leaders to be in power.
ABU (Anything but Umno) is a case in point. This is not about putting a responsible and accountable Pakatan into government.
ABU is about getting rid of Umno. So there is no serious scrutiny of what Pakatan offers.
What is being highlighted is the damage Umno has done to the country.
And for Umno it is not about the use of gutter politics to achieve its ends. All is good if the means justify the ends.
There are no more attempts to look at the right or wrong of doing anything: if what they do gets the results they want, then do it.
And the result they want is to stay in power!
If Pakatan wants to deny Najib and BN any inherent advantage, Pakatan needs to look beyond DSAI now.
We are not living in ancient times when generals led their armies into battles. In this war with BN, what need is there to give BN an overt target than by putting DSAI in the frontline?
Especially when that target is suspect and unable to stand up to an enemy with large armies and deep pockets?
Pakatan will not be able to match BN in money or resources.
What Pakatan has is the goodwill of many millions of Malaysians who are just as willing to consider giving their goodwill to BN if they think that Pakatan will fail to fulfil their aspirations of a good and decent government.
Just take me. After nearly three years of unquestionable support for DSAI, I no longer want him to lead Pakatan because he is not what Pakatan needs to win its war against BN.
I am still with Pakatan – this has not changed.
But what has changed is the realisation that to win the 13th general election, Pakatan needs all the help it can get – and one way it can do so is to take DSAI out of its frontline.
Pakatan leaders know better… yet
By so doing this it deprives Najib and BN of yet another focus or target to aim for in their relentless work to rid themselves of Pakatan.
I am one but increasingly this numbers grows as DSAI continually shoots himself in the foot through his own folly.
But first the leadership structure within BN and Pakatan must be held accountable for allowing their leaders to behave so.
Pakatan must be held more responsible (for its actions) than Umno because the former should have known better.
Karpal Singh, (Lim) Kit Siang, (Lim) Guan Eng, (Abdul) Hadi Awang and Tok Guru (Nik Aziz) should have known better because they had front row seats to the show that Umno had put on for the last 50 over years.
They went head to head with DSAI when he was a senior member of Mahathir’s government. They know better than us what DSAI did when he was education minister, finance minister and deputy prime minister.
And they, more than us, were at the receiving end of a BN government that tolerated no dissent and allowed less opportunity for them to make any difference to the political landscape of our country then and now.
And yet Kit Siang and Tok Guru are now adopting a “wait-and-see” strategy to the trials and tribulations of a DSAI and Najib face-off.
They do so because they think that this is the best possible strategy they could adopt for now.
I am sorry but I beg to differ.
Misplaced ‘wisdom’ in keeing DSAI
The benefit to Najib and BN of having DSAI as leader of Pakatan cannot be allowed to continue indefinitely.
Even now BN is reaping the benefits of having DSAI tied up endlessly in courts on this sodomy trial.
We, who are with Pakatan and we who are committed to ABU (Anything But Umno), are now questioning the wisdom of Pakatan’s “loyalty” to DSAI.
Is this a loyalty born out of decades of struggle against a common adversary or is this a “loyalty” born out of the fear to upset a delicate status quo and a misplaced belief that Pakatan cannot survive without DSAI – the compromised Malay perceived to be needed by Pakatan for victory at the coming general election?
Whatever their rationale for not doing anything to prepare themselves for a time after DSAI, what is real is that Pakatan has now surrendered the higher ground to BN.
It is indeed disturbing to see Pakatan now reduced to hurling inconsequential barbs and irrelevant arguments about BN using gutter politics and the entire arsenal at its disposal to neutralise a clear and present threat in the form of DSAI to themselves.
Do you expect Najib to do anything less?
I ask that Pakatan do not act after a fact. Pakatan must act before the fact. Take the fight to Najib and to BN. Present them with a fait accompli.
Go tell Najib that he removes DSAI from our midst only at his peril because what we have in place of DSAI is more formidable for him to contend with – then maybe Pakatan might have the respite needed to regroup and refocus its commitment to change.
Anwar can no longer be king
Remove all doubts from our minds that Pakatan cannot be the change that we all want for our people and our country.
Do this and then the ABU maxim will certainly take root. And then we will have again that tsunami that swept our Pakatan into being a serious and credible opposition to BN in the 12th general election.
Do it now before the tide ebbs and Pakatan’s opportunity passes.
To wait any longer will give too much advantage to Najib and BN – maybe too much advantage to take back once the real fight of the 13th general election begins in earnest.
There is enough goodwill within the people of our country to enable Pakatan to fight the good fight against BN in the coming general election.
I wonder if there is enough heart within Pakatan’s leaders to fight the good fight against BN.
There are many amongs us that will fight with you if you will take the lead.
Not to do so will mean that the seed that DSAI planted many years ago with Reformasi will not be given the opportunity to grow to its full potential.
DSAI was relevant then, he is relevant now – what has changed is how we fight out fight against BN.
DSAI can no longer be king but he can certainly be kingmaker. He is one, with us, he is many.
Who else will join us?
CT Ali is a reformist who believes in Pakatan Rakyat’s ideologies. He is a FMT columnist.
taken from: http://www.freemalaysiatoday.com/2011/11/15/anwar-must-go-for-rakyat-to-win/