A stupid plot

Assalammualaikum w.w.

Saudara Chandra Muzaffar yang dikasihi,                                                      

Semuga saudara, Mariam sekeluarga tetap tabah dan cekal menghadapi dugaan dan sentiasa berada didalam pemeliharaan Allah swt.

It is appalling that Universiti Malaya could allow itself to be dragged into a truculent, desperate and ultimately stupid plot by the ruling clique to silence its critics. It is indeed a tragedy that the tentacles of political schemers have finally reached the hallowed halls of academia.

Your virtual summary dismissal--and the demise of the newly established Centre for Civilisational Dialogue--so abrupt , crude and unjust, shows how shamefully deficient the university management is in its understanding of the role of the intellectual in society and how insensitive it is to the rights and needs of students. If it is not guilty of these, then it must be guilty of cowardice by being subservient to the dictates of the Mahathir administration. With the national leadership obsessed with an economic agenda of "bailouts" to salvage family interests and cronies, abetted by the "corporatised" university administration, the intellectual and cultural dimension of human endeavour, critical in a multi-racial Malaysia, has been relegated backstage as "not relevant"!

I am glad to hear, though I am not surprised, that you have vowed to persist in your struggle for freedom, justice and unity. Anyone who has followed your career and admired your erudition, your articulateness and your zeal for truth and justice in the tradition of scholarly disputation knows you cannot be cowed. Yours is a courage born of sincerity, which is foreign to your persecutors. You are a "subversive" element only because you provide an effective challenge to the predatory appetites of the corrupt regime. And, to paraphrase E.E. Cummings, you are one who has been "cursed with a talent for thinking" at the very time when the government demands of the people "the exact antithesis of thinking".

The latest round of political persecution is ill-conceived and miscalculated. Malaysians are not fools despite the leadership's condescending view of  the citizenry, which it furthers through its might, money and media. Universiti Malaya in this regard is unique too. It has a tradition of being "the conscience" of the society, speaking up against rampant corruption and moral decadence, and upholding justice and championing the cause of thepoor. The university's students have shown that they do have the committment and resolve to liberate themselves from imposed tutelage and demand what is right and just.

Insya Allah, the injustice perpetrated against you will only further accelerate the demand for and pace of REFORMASI!

Semuga Allah swt meneguhkan iman dan menambahkan kekuatan.

Wassalammualaikum W.W.

Anwar Ibrahim
Sungai Buloh Prison

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