Friday, July 28, 2006


Zam has said the bad word. Operasi Lalang. And he said "one or two" in the mainstream media are pushing their luck.

His statement to Bernama, courtesy of Screenshots:
"The government has identified one or two mainstream newspapers which have been abusing the freedom (of the press) to the extent that other newspaper editors have the impression that these newspapers are given special privileges," he told a press conference at his ministry Friday.

Zainuddin said the government had never given any newspapers special privilege and freedom and was always fair to all newspapers.

"If there are newspapers which claim they get special privileges from any quarters and want to challenge the government on this, then they should be prepared to face the consequences," he added.

Question is, which one of two?

Let me take your hand and lead you to the country's "mainstream" media? Most will agree that they fall under four newspaper groups - the NSTP, the STAR, Nexnews, and the Utusan Group.
These are:
The New Straits Times Press - NST, Berita Harian, Harian Metro (semi-mainstream), Malay Mail (no more mainstream)
The STAR - The Star (shut down as a result of Ops Lalang in 1987)
The Sun - The Sun, The Edge
Utusan - Utusan Malaysia, Kosmo (like Metro, semi-serious)

Based on Zam's statement, we can rule out the national news agency and the electronic media:

My hunch it's the English-language papers and we can safely exclude the Edge. That leaves the NST,l the Star, and the Sun.

And in this case, the Malay proverb Pisang Tak Berbuah Dua Kali (Lightning does not strike twice) may apply.


  1. Taking bets!

    I'm placing my money on NST and The Sun.

    The Sun ran some pretty ballsy stories recently.

    And NST simply because of the alleged spat/animosity between Zam and the rest.

    However, AKJ also mentioned something about Zam having clippings of NST and BH.

    So it could be those two.

    If any newspaper were to be banned, this would be a good chance to boost street cred, if given the proper spin.

  2. Anonymous3:42 am


    Say what you like, the days are numbered for several editors in the mainstream media. One simply cannot miss the tone by which Zam said this. And the fact that it was mentioned at a Press conference and carried extensively over Zam's own TV network, I think something is brewing. Zam is a member of Pak Lah's Cabinetm and we all know how certain editors simply downgrade Zam's profile to that of yet another petty officer. Zam is on to something hot. It's not rocket science to guess who he means by all this allegations. Friends of Zam would say that he's too much of a Malay leader to be taken lightly. We all remember how his attack on NSTP lame GEIC Hishamuddin at an Umno information bureau meeting and how he was taken to task by Hishamudin's master, Dato Haji Kali. Zam is too much of an editor to easily forget the mistreatment he received from the NSTP editors.

    Things are brewing. Events in Kota Baru involving Tun Dr Mahathir is a precursor of more things to come. I think so. Some people in power may find it too hot to handle. Tun Mahathir is loved more than despised; and his 22 years as Prime Minister is not for nothing. When I saw on TV the Prime Minister saying that the country's 50 years of Merdeka is a matter of pride, I can't but point out to myself that 22 of those 50 years were under Tun Mahathir's guidance and leadership.

    Someone has got to tell the Umno leaders up in their ivory PWTC tower that it's about time they take heed of the restlessness on the ground. Many of them could be in for a shock. You keep up the good work.

  3. Anonymous10:17 am

    what can we conclude from all this?:

    * zam is serious and has the interest of the country at heart?

    * zam is vengeful because Kali and Hisham treated him bad?

    How have the NST and BH acted badly? Overstepped the line? What did they exactly do or dint do? Zam did not specify.

    And can he do all that? Have the govt take action?
    Isnt he guilty of a similar draconian action?

    If they are foreign agents, then he has to come out with details.
    This is a very serious allegation. It is not something to be used just because it makes good copy in the media.
    Zam has to follow up.

  4. My reading is that there is a Mutiny on the Bounty -- ZAM is joining coleague Azalina Othman going against the nation's CEO. So the formation of pro-PM and pro-exPM is now clearer.

    For the sakes of 4th Estaters (and 5th Estate 2-- Bloggers?). I hope ZAM loses this round. Ops Lallang 2 won't be good for anybody, esp the Media, whether you like or hate the present NSTP bunch! I hope Rocky/Screenshots and Gang know at the end of the day, when Damocles sword falls, it takles on all victims is the Meduia is targeted.

  5. Anonymous12:41 pm

    When I was on the stage with Datuk Zam during the panel discussion on “Law Enforcement in the Supervision of the Newspapers” at Putrajaya earlier in the week, I privately warned him not be too sure about what he told me as impending changes in the media.

    It was obvious from his presentation and later during the Q&A that Zam was referring to the NSTP. Now some commentators said The Sun could be another target.

    As for the NSTP, I warned Zam that he should know who and what he’s up against. But he said he has his way of skinning the cat.

    Although leadership changes took place at literally all major mainstream media organizations in the months following Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi’s takeover from Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad in Nov. 2003, it was at the NSTP that the changes were most sweeping.

    It started with the unceremonious sacking of the Mahathir-era Group Editor-in-Chief, Tan Sri Abdullah (Kok Lanas) Ahmad, and the appointment of businessman-journalist Datuk Kalimullah Hassan Masheerul Hassan as his replacement.

    This was followed by systematic “removal” of other Mahathir-era editors and senior journalists, mostly Malays, by way of transfers, job reclassification and finally the offer of voluntary separation scheme.

    So, bearing in mind these very deliberate changes in the NSTP, which could not and would not happen without the Prime Minister’s blessing, I warned Zam that he should not be too confident about promoting changes in that company.

    But with him repeating his warning a few days later and hinting that changes are on the way, the only conclusion that I can draw is Zam may know something that we don’t.

    Reputation is at stake here, not just of Zam but also of the Prime Minister, the government and Umno.

    So this is one media event worth watching.

  6. Anonymous2:06 pm

    i can bet my life on it. it has to be the sun, mouthpiece of the liberals and the beautiful people.

  7. Anonymous3:19 pm

    Though a free press is an ideal worth striving for, I find it extremely disturbing that certain newspapers have used the self-same arguments on freedom, independence and democracy to promote their own agendas. Let's be clear about this - its one thing to be have an ideological agenda and to promote it, but its another thing altogether when under the guise of being the voice of being "progressive, liberal and democratic" some sections of our mainstream media have taken it upon themselves to demonise the image of certain sections of our society. Here I was thinking, naively of course, one ought to practice what one preaches. Frankly its insulting that in light of the current political developments taking place, Botox has officially replaced politics as the main menu of the day.

  8. Anonymous3:21 pm

    Bru, what's your take on Khairy Jamaluddin viz. deputy Umno Youth Chief, son-in-law of the PM, ED of ECM Libra Berhad, Halal Forum Chairman, MyTeam Captain and most recently the champion of the Palestinian cause on his storming of the Asean meeting yesterday?
    We need that kind of bravery and audacity in facing a heartless, war-mongering, children-killing Bush assicaite like Condoleezza Rice. I salute KJ and Umno Youth and all the protestors.
    But with KJ wearing so many hats, I am not sure which is mere political posuturing and media stunt and which is genuine struggle.
    Let me be serious this time. This is KJ's problem. We don't know the real man. The media has spun him in such a way that we don't know which is real KJ, the human being and which is the political and corporate creature.
    His storming of the meeting may be good for publicity. But when the time comes for separating the grains from the chaff, many people may mistake him for the chaff. For his own good and for the good of his PM father-in-law, KJ must start making this distinction.
    I think what Dr Mahathir is driving at is Pak Lah should behave like a PM. He should take charge of the country and provide for the people. Now a lot of people think he is to beholden to his family members and their friends.
    KJ can help his father-in-law by distancing himself from the man. That's what he should do. Instead he and his wife moved into Seri Perdana to live with the PM.
    I think Pak Lah should get married against for companion, for emotional support and to avoid perkara-perkara tak manis because, whatever it is, he's still a man. Many men remarry at his age.
    Pak Lah deserves a good woman and I repeat, a good woman.

  9. Anonymous5:13 am

    rocky, every newspaper should be like star. star hears no evil, sees no evil, talks no evil. in other words, be an advertising paper. just don't mention anything controversial = this is the mantra of clowns like steven tan and wong sue long and wong chang wai.

  10. Anonymous11:40 am

    Abang Rocky, do you think Dato' Hishamuddin Aun is safe. I think he is safe lah because he don't do anything. He don't decide, he write about petty things and he know nothing. Just imagin, GEIC of NSTP wrote about head of Putra Umno in his column today (30/7/2005)...pptttt. Last week he wrote about his undivided support for KJ. Good lah, because he made it clear his stand to everyone. If anything...easy also. Sendiri mau ingatlah...You ask Syed Nazri, Zainul Ariffin, Azmi Ansar, Dato' Manja Ismail, Ahmad Tajudin Baharuddin, Mustapha Omar, Mahfar Ali and the rest, even junior reporters, do they respect his writing?. I know the answer because they told me their piece of mind about their so-called GEIC.

    Anak Lima

  11. Anonymous5:38 pm

    Datuk Hishammuddin Aun, seperti Kali dan Brendan, adalah manifestasi proses pendangkalan media -- the dumbing down of the media -- yang selari dengan minda dan daya intelek kemimpinan hazari (moden).
    Hisham adalah wakil mutakhir kepada era "beri tahu aku apa yang aku perlu tahu dan bukan apa yang aku suka dengar" yang tunggang terbalik.
    Diterjenah: Bagi tahu aku apa yang menyeronokkan aku dan bukan apa yang mendukacitakan kamu."
    Jadi "anak Lima", jagalah anakmu sebaik mampu kerana bapak Perdana Menteri harus menangani isu-isu anak, menantu dan para sekutu.
    Kau dan aku, ibarat sampah Sungai Klang yang dibawa arus laju ketika hujan lebat di hulu.

  12. Rocky!

    Yes, something will happen very soon, editors will be hauled there is no turning back, many serious issues are at stake such as the security and the sovereignty of Malaysia and traitors and paid agents will be rooted out starting with a a former Indian-Muslim editor and an Indian-Christian editor with S'pore PR. Remember I said they should pack up and leave while they can still do, well they should heed this warning again! The country will see a massive expression of "amok" to be shown by Umno leaders and YES Ops Lallang will be seen as a Sunday school picnic!

    We are going to have fun watching!

    PS, Rocky you should consider how lucky you are, but do not ever let them find out you are a double or triple agents! Personaly I dont think you are any of the above. Well let me tell you, when shit hits the fan you are safe Bro because some people like you !

  13. Anonymous8:35 am

    pasquale said...

    "...and traitors and paid agents will be rooted out starting with a a former Indian-Muslim editor and an Indian-Christian editor with S'pore PR. Remember I said they should pack up and leave while they can still do, well they should heed this warning again! "


    The sooner the better!!

    Pi berampus. memang aku doa kan Kali & sekutu2nya bukan saja disingkir & hilang lenyap dari NST, tetapi juga dari bumi ku Malaysia!!

    Benci pada penghianat2 agama, bangsa & negara!!

  14. Anonymous11:31 am

    saudara pasquale,

    Saya amat faham perasaan anda. Tapi, my advice to you --- jangan lah biarkan kebencian anda terhadap beberapa orang di NST makan diri anda.
    There is a GOD. There is an Almighty.
    (And HE certainly is NOT KALI-MULLAH, BPerera or KAYJAY)