updates, 10 pm: I think the friggin Indons should take care of their own backyard by Seventh Rangers
Original posting:"Prime Minister Abdullah Badawi is no Mahathir Mohamad ... Even promising to step down in 2010 has not quelled discontent within the BN rank.
While we welcome the ushering in of democratic change within our neighboring state, we lack full confidence that the practical alternatives will suffice for Malaysia's needs.
Let us remind our Malaysian cousins that based on Indonesia's own painful experience, a change of allegiance at the elite level is not equivalent to a change in fundamental beliefs toward the primacy of civil society.
Defecting lawmakers from the ruling coalition to the opposition does not make them democracy's soldiers, only political opportunists.
We fear that what we are seeing in Malaysia is neither revolution nor evolution, but is instead a potential transition from one power to another."
Why is Jakarta Post saying these things? You'd expect such an editorial to have been published in the NST or the Sun. Not in an English-language daily of a friendly neighbour. A lot of Malaysians are not going to like reading what the leader has to say, especially about DSAI and his defectors. Many Abdullah Badawi die-hards are going to protest, too, for the leader's depiction of the Prime Minister.
Read the full editorial here.
Indonesian journalists claim that their Press are freer than what it used to be and certainly more so than the Malaysian Press. But considering how touchy we are about them and they about us, I expect some people to view this editorial as more than just about the freedom of expression and more about minding other people's business.
The Bernama's take:-
General September 19, 2008 17:16 PM
Defecting Lawmakers Only Opportunists, Says Jakarta Post
By Mohd Nasir Yusoff
JAKARTA, Sept 19 (Bernama) -- Indonesia's The Jakarta Post English daily, commenting today on the political development in Malaysia, said the (possible) act of lawmakers defecting from the ruling Barisan Nasional (BN) coalition to the opposition does not make them democracy's soldiers but political opportunists.
Based on Indonesia's own painful experience, it said, a change of allegiance at the elite level was not equivalent to a change in fundamental beliefs toward the primacy of civil society.
Malaysian Opposition Leader Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim, advisor of Parti Keadilan Rakyat (PKR), has been claiming that he has the backing of a sufficient number of BN defectors to give his Pakatan Rakyat (PR) coalition a simple majority in parliament.
"We fear that what we are seeing in Malaysia is neither revolution nor evolution, but is instead a potential transition from one power to another.
"But Pakatan Rakyat too must show it is more than just a vehicle for Anwar," it said.
The paper said the performance of Malaysian Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak as minister of finance, a portfolio he assumed on Wednesday, would gauge his acceptability as Malaysia's next leader.
Najib and Prime Minister Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi exchanged Cabinet portfolios -- finance and defence -- on Wednesday as part of the plan for transition of power from Abdullah to Najib in June 2010.
The paper noted that "on the other end of the spectrum, the opposition coalition of Pakatan Rakyat under Anwar has been big on headlines but lacking in actual policy proposals".