Obama’s audacity of improbable hope

Obama’s audacity of improbable hope

Article by Dr David KL Quek | Aug 8, 08 in Malaysiakini


Four years ago, when Barack Obama was given the podium to address the Democrat convention, it raised many an eyebrow. Mainly because, as an African American, he had been given such an accolade, and at such a tender age at that.

At that time, I remembered downloading his speech, and comparing it with others including Al Sharpton, John Kerry, John Edwards and Al Gore. Even then, he had shown remarkable talent in rhetoric in an evangelical, inspiring, rabble-rousing, exhortation sort of way.

Since then, I must confess that I have become one of the religiously-converted hordes of Obama-manic fans.

Continue reading

Five new crucial parameters for politicians

Five new crucial parameters for politicians

Malaysiakini letterby JD Lovrenciear | Aug 8, 08


Against this backdrop of developments, politicians need to come to terms with reality. The time has come upon our fifty-year old nation to have politicians who are professional and not merely the ‘street smart’ type that we have been putting up with.

There are five crucial parameters that politicians must quickly grasp with integrity if we are to see any progress for the nation.

Continue reading

Unstoppable people’s power against immovable Tatmadaw

Unstoppable people’s power against immovable Tatmadaw

Adapted and edited from Malaysiakini’s article by Har Wai Mun | Aug 8, 08


‘Batman: The Dark Knight’ make its remarkable debut recently and threatened to rewrite some of those movie blockbuster records.

Besides adoring the battle action and Batman’s high-tech gadgets, the Malaysian audience could seriously ponder the Joker’s metaphor about his battle with Batman, mentioned towards the end of the movie: ‘Unstoppable forces meets immovable object’.

Well, is it similar with the battle between the NLD’s ‘unstoppable’ forces of People’s Power lead by Daw Aung San Suu Kyi against the ‘immovable’ dominance of the SPDC and Tatmadaw?

Continue reading

Rais called for the creation of a council to monitor bloggers


 Blogger apologises for

defacing police logo

Malaysiakini news by Syed Jaymal Zahiid | Aug 11, 08

abu bakar mohd rashid penarik beca 0808081Penarik Beca webmaster Abu Bakar Mohd Rashid has expressed regret for defacing the Royal Malaysian Police logo in his blog.


However, the blogger insists that he will continue to express himself in his writings even if they incur the wrath of certain quarters.

Abu Bakar – also known as Bakaq Haq – who was detained at the Bukit Aman federal police headquarters for two days following the debacle last Wednesday, apologised for his action and admitted he might have upset “the good cops.”

“This is life. In life there are the good guys and there are the bad guys. My action was targeted at the bad guys but I am sorry for upsetting the entire police force,” he told Malaysiakini today.

“But I would like to stress that I am only apologising and expressing regret for the crest. I will not retract anything I have written in my posting,” he added.

Continue reading

Playing for human rights at Beijing

Playing for human rights at Beijing

Malaysiakini article by Vaclav Havel, Desmond Tutu et al | Aug 8, 08

beijing olympic games bird nest stadium with military personnal looking at fireworks display 040808VÁCLAV HAVEL is a former president of the Czech Republic, DESMOND TUTU is a Nobel Peace Prize laureate, WEI JINGSHENG is an activist in the Chinese democracy movement, most prominent for authoring the document ‘Fifth Modernisation’ on the ‘Democracy Wall’ in Beijing in 1978 , ANDRÉ GLUCKSMANN is a philosopher and essayist.

The selection of Beijing to organise and host the 2008 Olympic Games was accompanied by the Chinese government’s pledges of visible progress on respect for human rights.

beijing olympics stadiumWe understood these as a condition whose fulfillment the International Olympic Committee would demand.

That is how this year’s Olympics could contribute to a greater openness and respect for international standards of human rights and liberties in the host country.


Continue reading

Twenty years on, Burma’s opposition lacks unity

WHILE the whole world is busy watching the Beijing Olympics, many Burmese are preparing for the 20th anniversary of the August 8, 1988 uprising, or “8888”. But the question now is how many Burmese can seriously review this journey of 20 years and the goals of the democracy movement? There is no sign of any big ceremony inside the country as all key members of the 88 Generation Student Group, including Min Ko Naing, are in jail.

Read more

20th Anniversary of the 8888 Uprising

20th Anniversary of the 8888 Uprising

Today (8 08 2008) marks the 20th anniversary of Burma’s largest national democratic uprising when millions of Burmese citizens bravely marched through the streets calling for freedom and democracy — the protests were brutally crushed by the military and thousands were killed.

For over twenty years, the political will of the Burmese have been brutally suppressed. For twenty years, the military regime has got away, literally with murder. This cannot and will not go on. The international community needs to use its own political freedom to promote the political freedom and expression of human rights in Burma.

Read more

Zarganar Again Before Prison Court


Thursday,August 7,2008

Burma’s popular satirist Zarganar appeared before a court in Rangoon’s Insein Prison for a second time on Thursday, together with three activists accused of anti-state activities.

A member of Zarganar’s family said the four had been charged with eight alleged offences under the Emergency Provisions Act, Section 5(J) and Section 17/A, which bans contacts with organizations deemed to be unlawful.

Continue reading

Perfect 10 is now not enough to get a medal!



Gymnastics are pushed dangerously by the new system

BEIJING, Aug 8 — Whenever judges are involved in sports, scandal could be close behind. Gymnasts and figure skaters know all about it.

In the last six years, both sports have undergone drastic changes to their scoring systems after being rocked by questionable or unethical judging.

In the Winter Olympics’ signature sport, that meant discarding the traditional 6.0 system for a points-based approach that actually has enhanced versatility while forcing skaters to scale back on some of the tougher jumps.

In gymnastics, it’s pushed the envelope the other way.

The long-standing perfect 10 is gone, the degree of difficulty in routines has increased exponentially, and the tricks are bordering on dangerous.

“It’s hard to prepare guys the way we used to when you could shoot for a 10,” Canada coach Tony Smith said. “Then you hear about the numbers a guy in China is doing.

“The rules of the sport have made a situation where it’s become much harder on the coaches and on the need to keep it safe.”

Continue reading

Mrs Bush Visits Mae Lah Refugee Camp


Thursday,August 7,2008

MAE SOT — Burmese residents of a refugee camp near the Thai-Burmese border appealed on Thursday to US first lady Laura Bush to help them resettle in the West.

Mrs Bush promised them to do all she could as she toured the Mae Lah camp near the Thai border town of Mae Sot. Around 40,000 refugees live in Mae Lah, the biggest refugee camp in Thailand.

US first lady Laura Bush, center left, is flanked by her daughter Barbara as she talks with a Karen refugees family at Mae Lah refugee camp near the Thai-Burmese border. (Photo: AP)

Continue reading