Saturday, November 10, 2007

10:eleven, Daulat Tuanku! The yellow wave.

UPDATE - 11 Nov 2007.
Pg 8, The Star 'Cops break up march'. And that is the best the mainstream paper can do.
If one was to read the article and accept that as what happened, then its all and sundry here in Malaysia. After all only 4000 people gathered and the police broke up the march. And detained 245 people for questioning too. The NST says the same. It does look like suspicously concerted effort to paint a picture that wasn't.
But in reality, let me tell you what happened. I would say between 80k to 100k people gathered and marched in various parts of Kuala Lumpur. From where I was at the central market, there was already more then 1k. From the riverbank, I could see Masjid Jamek crowded with people. It was there that the FRU clashed with the marchers. I wouldn't call them protesters as they weren't protesting at all. The Inspector General of Police Tan Sri Musa later said that there were 4k police personnel on duty. One could see that in every corner, there were policemen of all shapes and sizes, and colours too (their uniforms, that is). So, it perplexes me that they could mobilise all this personnel to disperse the crowd but not issue a 'permit' and monitor instead. I say, we do away this nonsesical farce of a law that sees only 'their' side having get permits to gather (read, the march against the foriegn secretary of the US, and the march against the Myanmar Junta by UMNO youth).
Ok, back to the march, not protest. Credit to the opposition parties for towing the line. There were no sloganeering, no political party cries, no banners, just solidarity in asking for clear electoral reforms. Leaving central Market, we were left behind by the main group, and having received a phone call from Frederick (a blogger from Johor who took the bus up to KL to participate in this march and then back again to JB, my salute to you, sir) who met up with us, we proceeded to the Dataran, only to meet with a standoff between the FRU and some 40 odd marchers.

These 40 were cordoned off between the Straits Building and the Bar Council. As we were restrained from passing the police line, we could see the arrival of Black Marias, presumably to arrest the group of 40. at this point, we were ordered to disperse, as we were informed of our illegal gathering. Funny this, as I am now told that to stand around in a public place with some friends is now a public offence! (I'm a Malaysian-Eric, Ancient Mariner-Capt, OBE-Shar, Litte Taffler's-Melvin, Frederick and me, along with Michele, Sarah, and Galadriel-Anu made up some 18-20 people who witnessed this). As the police moved in, the crowd of 40 dispersed with cheers from the crowd. We then made our way to the palace, careful of avoiding the main streets for fear that we will be stopped by the police.
As we approached the klang bus station, we could see streams of people walking towards the direction of the palace.

From the overhead bridge of Jln Mahameru, and the overpass of Jln Kuching. Much like a scene from REM's music video! We merged with bigger group of marchers from Jln Tun HSLee, passing the Traffic police station. From there we walked past Kampung Attap, and an endless stream of marchers (3-4 abreast) along the roadside. Thanks to the presence of PAS's AMAL arm who acted as traffic wardens, walking for the many makciks and pakciks were made easier. Here, I managed to ask an elderly lady for a few words. (she bussed up from Malacca, and she wanted to be a part of the marchers to petition the King to listen to the rakyat. She also lamented her disappointment in the current administration before shouting 'Daulat Tuanku'!)

Reaching the front of the Palace grounds, it dawned on me, the size of the group that was already there. Haris, Shamila, Augustine and Benny had already split up with us much earlier. I later learnt that Shanghai Stephen and Rocky were in another group. All in I would say at least 80k showed up! There were cheers, and I later found out that it was when a small group was allowed to hand over the petition to palace officials. There were rumours at one point that the King had ordered a regiment of troops to ensure the safety of the marchers. What a sight that would have been.
I know of friends who walked that day. I am not sure what your reason would have been if you weren't there. But i have this to say, never have I seen so many people walked in solidarity for a justified reason. I did not at any point think that this would have ended the way it did. The fact is, its not ended. It has only just begun. Ensure that you take the next step to claim your right to vote.
No to corruption. No to illegal mansions. No more cover ups. We want the truth.
We want back our beloved Malaysia.
Daulat Tuanku! Daulat Tuanku! Daulat Tuanku!
Read: rocky's bru, 3540 Jln Sudin, The People's Parliament,I'm a Malaysian, Ancient Mariner, Shanghai Stephen, screenshots-1, screenshots flw up here, here and here, Rantings, OBE, Little Taffer's Room, kickdefella, Frederick from xpyred, for their perspective and tell me you trust the main stream press more!
So How many do you think attended this show of dissatisfaction? You decide.

Pix: at the KFC outlet relaying info and awaiting others to arrive

- - - - - - - - - - - -10:eleven live from KFC Central Market- - - - - - - - - - - -
So, there was a show of force as expected. From the boys in blue, road blocks along the main thoroughfare into the city to prevent the rakyat (the very people that voted the government into power) from congregrating and marching to the Palace of the King of Malaysia to hand over a memorandum.
One that requests his Majesty to intervene and ensure that we the rakyat get a free and fair election. And so, it turned out that not one or two, but many thousands showed up. The federal reserve unit was out in full force, as did the rest, special branch, and other units. Now didn't the government say that we are not a police state? Why is it then that they can mobilise so many police personnel but not issue a permit and crowd control instead?
I can't help but think that the government does not want to listen anymore. Their arrogance is showing indeed, asking all to vote BN out if we are not happy.

Well, speaking to a complete stranger ,it reaffirmed my belief that finally, Malaysians have had enough. We are still here waiting for the entourage to march straight to the palace. Dont't wish us luck, just remember this day, and vote wisely next time round. Ok?

18 comments:

Melvin Mah said...

Hi Tony,

I just happened to find a very close reference to the thunder and lightning thing which I've mentioned. Though it didn't mention accurately, the arguements by Mercius of Confucianism is somewhat very close to yesterday's rain.

Well, most of us had written our accounts of the rally, including myself, and I really expected Abdullah to say something and ZAM to react. ZAM imposed a media blackout on the coverage, instead allowing only of talking traffic jams...

The Ancient Mariner said...

My legs are still very sore from the hike but it was certainly worth it. Thanks for the ride home, Tony.

bangmalaysia said...

Hi, I was there too, remember I was kinda lost at the FRU/police standoff near the Bar Council leading to Dataran. Thanks for leading me to the march cutting across the Klang Bus Station. Got soaking wet and the tear gas got to me earlier though. But it was worth it to see history in the making.

muststopthis said...

Melvin,
Please do enlighten us with the chinese legend on storm clouds!
Will do a link once you have that post up.

Capn,
My pleasure. I'm sure you will do it again if the need be, I'm pretty sure I will...

BangMalaysia,
Yes! I remember you but If I'm not wrong there were two of you. Sorry for the names, I'm quite forgetful these days, but faces, definitely not! Great to have you guys along for the march, remember, it has only just begun. Those lies that they have been dishing out? ENOUGH!

fred said...

It definitely was history in the making, and it was just amazing to see so many Malaysians sharing the same disquiet out on the streets, braving the rain and the threat of police brutality. Rakyat pantang dicabar indeed!!

It was fantastic meeting up with you, Tony, and I bet I'd have gotten lost in the rain and the alien KL streets if not for you, Mich, Sharon, Shar and the rest! Beers are definitely on me if find yourself down south!

muststopthis said...

Hey Fred,
thanks for dropping in. Good to have met up with you.
Man, if you could come up from JHB just for the march, and go back again on the 8.30 bus, whats the excuse for KLites?

Anyway ,to each his own, I know I have found a like minded Malaysian down south in you!
Keep blogging, and you owe me an email.....
Cheers!

maria a samad (kak ton) said...

Hi Tony,

I salute you guys for taking part in the march, yes, march not demonstration.

If not for bloggers like you who took part and blogged about it, we wouldnt be able to get the REAL news & feedback. The mainstream media? Forget about them, they're are a gone case. Cant trust their reports either. Bernama's figure was grossly inaccurate. But then, what do you expect from a "gomen" news agency. As for the NST - I say shame to the editors for totally blacking out the event. Any journalist worth his salt would know The Yellow March was newsworthy deserving a front page.

Kerp (Ph.D) said...

tony,

without being political,my hats off to you guys for walking the talk. just cant wait to hear first-hand stories from you and the lads.

*thats one hot-looking cop i saw in the vid. hihi...

muststopthis said...

kak ton,
I almost puked when I read the news, what more when I actually sat thru TV3's Buletin Utama (my FIL is a regular at 8pm). The saving grace was at least Astro aired 2 segments of Al Jazeera before taking that off air too! Thanks to Technology, and YOUTUBE! How are they going to spin this?
I have stopped reading the Star since Sunday! Right now, my only source of news is from the internet......
BERNAMA? Who are they??? with all this spinning, I am hopefule that the rakyat too will source for news from us bloggers!

Kerp,
My thoughts exactly, hottie in uniform!! He he...but on the serious side, we are not letting BAD RUDE DIN off lightly....

adam and eve said...

i'm terribly terribly proud of u guys

alliedmartster said...

A&E
Civil society has woken up!
Lets hope that society will reclaim back our nations integrity!

anfield devotee said...

sorry to damper yer high spirits but I urge you guys to go read what some anonymous (they always are, aren't they) blogger talking shite on Patrick Teoh's blog. And this fook head has the nerve to flame me . . . sigh.

Well done to those who took part & sorry as me ill health prevented me from joining you.

fabm said...

Thanks for your interesting account of the Bersih rally.

I am compiling a list of detail commentaries so that people who are searching for them can easily find them. I hope you don't mind if I use a couple of quotes from your blog for this list.
The compilation of the BERSIH blogs can be found here: http://mfabm.blogspot.com

Mat Salo said...

Great passionate reporting, bro'.. Ya lorr, we now only get 'real' news from blogs. Thanks.. means a lot to us who are out of our beloved country... Yes, let's take our beloved country back!

realist said...

you people just played to the hands of the opposition parties. who do these 40K or so demonstrators think they are representing? who? all us rakyat?? sorry to break yr bubble, but that day, you were pawns of the opposition.
sure the opposition claims that BERSIH consists of 60 plus Non-Governmental Organisations (NGOs) and a small "insignificant" number of 5 Opposition political parties, making this a "non political " rally. i hear that all the time from those in favour of the rally.
that statement is nothing more than political tactic made up by the opposition, a cunning and manipulative one. the obvious outcome of such rally is more ppl voting for the opposition. and you all would hv just played into their hands.
they hype the crowd with feel good statements, use the king (who was horse riding in trengganu tht day) to raise the emotions of these pawns , instructed their members (the bulk of protesters) to not waive party flags to reinforce their claim tht this is a rakyat rally not a political one, repeatedly harp on all the bad things BN has done ( which they have - yes im not a BN supporter) , with the extensive news coverage from tv3 to al jazeera, the opposition hit a home run this time. great publicity , and hopefully more angered voters and fence sitters voting for them.

yea yea , i hear u ..of 60 plus non govt org only "insignificant" 5 opposition political parties, or in percentage terms, 7% of bersih is opposition parties.

ok so tell me , so tell me why is it that 5 out of 7 delegation that went to to hand the memorandum to the King were leaders of opposition political parties?

sorry to break yr bubble, im a rakyat. u did nothing for me except made a 1/2 hr journey turn into a 3 hr journey thanks to traffic and roadblocks. enough of your 'we did it for malaysia' and yr 'daulat tuanku'..you guys didnt gv an ass abt the tuanku when they were beaten to the ground by DrM. and u didnt do it for malaysia, you did it for the 5 ppl out of 7 that went to see the king... who was in trengganu horse riding.

anfield devotee said...

dear realist, the way the govt controls the media, are you surprised that the opposition resorted to such "tactics" to get some coverage?

What other option did it have?

Plus isn't the opposition part of a democratic parliament? Don't they have a role to play?

The opposition may have gotten some mileage but so what?
Compared to the constant flow of bullshit we have to put up with from BN on a daily basis this was a drop in the fooking sewer.

realist said...

so u admit tht this was an opposition rally?

muststopthis said...

MS,
As usual, thanks for dropping in.
funny, though there seems to be more and more ppl who seem to think that the march was a hogwash!

realist,
What can I say? you seem to me like a reasonable person. so why don't you reason.
the march was for electoral reform, meaning the current electoral process stoinks of governmental control. don't believe me? Just take a look at the delianation exercise. And what is the reason for Putrajay constituency? that aside, as long as there are elction processes, then there is bound to be opposition. don't use the word as if its a bad word.
i don't support DAP,PAS nor PKR. whatI support is a level playing field. as to using the excuse of your 30 minute drive turning out to one that was 3 hours, blame it on the police. given this argument, will you then say that Thaipusam is also detrimental to traffic? if the police were truely neutral as they are suppose to, think of the number of personnel that they could have deployed to man the streets instead of setting up road blocks? the people who marched that day made a statement, that they will not sit silent (unlike u) whilst the country is pilferred and rape by these so call custodians. if you still do not see it, I suggest you start up your own blog and start telling all that in Malaysia, we truely have a balanced policy for the development of the country.

Anfield,
ihear you, unfortunately there are still many out there like me 10 years ago....