By Chandra Muzzafar
7 March 2008
Petaling Jaya

“Anwar, Aliran…and exposing the truth”

I would not have bothered to respond to the malicious comments on blogs and websites about my criticism of Anwar Ibrahim if Aliran had also not joined the chorus of attacks on me. The Aliran attack is in a sense the most painful.

Let me begin by correcting some erroneous phrases in the Aliran Media Statement. I had not said that the BN “is a better choice”.  Neither the STAR nor the NST which reported my speech at the Forum on the General Election organized by the STAR on 3 March 2008 used that phrase. What I said was that “at this juncture in our history, the BN, despite all its flaws, constitutes the only viable inter-ethnic coalition in the country.” I then explained why the attempt by the Opposition to create an alternative coalition between 1999 and 2001, in which I was involved, together with others, failed. “That the BN &is a better choice” is a phrase concocted by Aliran officials who had signed the Statement.

By the same token, there is no way that my remarks on Anwar could be construed as an “emotional outburst”. The half a minute answer I gave was in response to a question from a member of the audience. I spelt out briefly the reasons why I thought Anwar was not fit to lead a multi-ethnic nation. There are many other factors that disqualify him from performing a leadership role which I shall reveal at the right time.

Some of my unhappiness with Anwar and Parti KeAdilan Nasional (as it was then known as)  which I quit in December 2001, I chose to share with Aliran President, P. Ramakrishnan, at a dinner in a Petaling Jaya restaurant in early 2002. From the notes I have kept of our meeting, I  was quite candid with him about money politics in the party, the lack of  financial accountability, and its manipulation of communal sentiments. It was information that I have over the years brought to the notice of a handful of other friends. In a couple of interviews with local magazines I had also alluded to these weaknesses within the party and its leadership. But I never really exposed the politics of PKR and Anwar until 3 March 2008.

Aliran leaders, like some others who have made caustic comments about my criticism of Anwar, ask why I had decided to go public at this time, in the midst of the 12th General Election campaign. As I have explained, I did not choose the moment or the occasion. I was merely replying to a question from the floor.

My answer has prompted a variety of individuals and groups within and without the political arena to expose the machinations and manipulations of a Machiavellian politician. For this master of deceit and duplicity was beginning to hoodwink a gullible segment of Malaysian society into believing that he was that long awaited ‘knight in shining armour’ who would deliver the masses into that glorious paradise of justice and equality. It is partly because ‘the knight’ has been unmasked that a lot more Malaysians have become conscious of what is at stake at this critical moment in their lives when they once again exercise their right to determine their future.    

The unmasking of their ‘knight’ has obviously made the Aliran leaders unhappy. They demand to know why I am “so concerned about the problem of money politics in PKR” and yet have not “said much of late about the money politics which has always been associated with the BN.”  If any of the Aliran leaders was at the 3rd March Forum he would acknowledge that in my presentation I had highlighted corruption in the upper echelons of politics and business as one of the three major challenges confronting the nation. I had also suggested that the widening gap between the ‘have-a-lot’ and the ‘have-a-little’ and the strengthening of democracy are two other challenges that demand urgent attention from the ruling elite. Since the main thrust of my presentation was the relationship between the ethnic situation and the forthcoming election, I also expressed the view that the ruling elite of the last few decades was largely responsible for allowing ethnic polarization to worsen.  At the end of my talk, I proposed that the BN should at the grassroots level begin to transform itself into a truly multi-ethnic rather than an inter-ethnic party in order to enhance national integration.

It is of course true that these Malaysian concerns have not been the primary foci of my attention in the last decade and a half. This is because I have been concentrating upon the global power structure. But I am aware of how that global impacts upon the local. It is because I know quite a bit about the globallocal interface that I am deeply worried about Anwar Ibrahim’s role in Malaysian politics. 


35 responses »

  1. […] | grep understanding knowledge wrote an interesting post today onHere’s a quick excerptChandra retaliates, bites Aliran… Posted in ABOUT HUMAN RIGHTS, ABOUT UNITED NATIONS, ABOUT WOMEN, ELECTIONS GENERAL, HEADS UP!, MALAYSIAN MADNESS, MEDIA, NEWS, OOLALA!!!, OPPOSITION POLITICS, POLITICAL on March 7, 2008 by sloone By Chandra Muzzafar 7 March 2008 Petaling Jaya “Anwar, Aliran…and exposing the truth” I would not have bothered to respond to the malicious comments on blogs and websites about my criticism of Anwar Ibrahim if Aliran had also not joined the chorus of attacks on me […]

  2. Abdul Malek says:

    Professor 10 sen.

    I could have believed him if he had not mistimed his comment, intentionally.

  3. […] Travel Blogs, Travel Journals, Travelogues, Travel Diaries – TravelPod since 1997 wrote an interesting post today onHere’s a quick excerptChandra retaliates, bites Aliran… Posted in ABOUT HUMAN RIGHTS, ABOUT UNITED NATIONS, ABOUT WOMEN, ELECTIONS GENERAL, HEADS UP!, MALAYSIAN MADNESS, MEDIA, NEWS, OOLALA!!!, OPPOSITION POLITICS, POLITICAL on March 7, 2008 by sloone By Chandra Muzzafar 7 March 2008 Petaling Jaya “Anwar, Aliran…and exposing the truth” I would not have bothered to respond to the malicious comments on blogs and websites about my criticism of Anwar Ibrahim if Aliran had also not joined the chorus of attacks on me […]

  4. Err… How much did they pay you, my dear Dr.?

  5. […] Hacking NetFlix wrote an interesting post today onHere’s a quick excerptChandra retaliates, bites Aliran… Posted in ABOUT HUMAN RIGHTS, ABOUT UNITED NATIONS, ABOUT WOMEN, ELECTIONS GENERAL, HEADS UP!, MALAYSIAN MADNESS, MEDIA, NEWS, OOLALA!!!, OPPOSITION POLITICS, POLITICAL on March 7, 2008 by sloone By Chandra Muzzafar 7 March 2008 Petaling Jaya “Anwar, Aliran…and exposing the truth” I would not have bothered to respond to the malicious comments on blogs and websites about my criticism of Anwar Ibrahim if Aliran had also not joined the chorus of attacks on me […]

  6. Rahman says:

    Whatever it is, being a man who knows well BN and their media and their type of campaign, and knowing well that he was in The Star’s forum, there is no excuse for him to be ignorant of the fact that his statement will be used against the opposition. And this is why, Chandra’s 30 second outburst was intentional. Chandra is someone who is disapointed in politicians, not unline the battered divorcee who turns into a radical feminist.

  7. Aru says:

    People change.All are not Mr Prefect including you.Anwar has changed for the better.We believe that hope is there.Better to give him a shot than
    giving BN whose is out there to revenge us after the election.

    Your timing is vicious on a friend that you now.Wonder anyone are friends in politics.

  8. kesava says:

    Where does Chandra get the money to run this so-called `JUST`?

  9. kesava says:

    I would put more faith in anwar than in badawi or chandra.

  10. Josh says:

    Chandra wanted to be a guru, a mentor of sort, to some Keadilan leaders. He obviously failed. His ego was hurt, and he has become bitterly resentful since. This should serve as a lesson to any scholar who harbours similar ambitions. You either be an honest intellectual, or risk being tarnished.

  11. kesava says:

    Anwar’s Letter to Malaysia

    From day one on nomination day itself, fraud upon fraud has been the hallmark of Umno-BN, through their ever-willing puppet, the EC. The introduction of stamp duties, followed by its abrupt abolition; uneven campaigns and gangster-like threats towards opposition candidates; the EC’s admission that there are apparent 8, 666 votes above 100 years of age; un-secret postal votes; and most shockingly – the abolition of the use of indelible ink on the grounds of ‘public safety’.

    These absurd frauds are clearly desperate attempts to maintain the rule of Umno-BN, even as they shiver in fear, seeing the readiness of the people to voice out their dissatisfaction across the length and breadth of the country. But what is truly sad is that it seems, from this endless series of trickery, that in the eyes of Umno-BN, the people of Malaysia are so easily manipulated and fooled with impunity.

  12. jughead says:

    Man, this bloke brought out 3 main factors – 1 money politics, 2 accountability 3) communal polities. What a joke that he can see small needle in the opposition when he cannot see the SuperJuMBo that is carry out by BN. Even a very poor and uneducated INdian plantation worker can discern the sins high up to the heavens practised by BN. Even a blind singer can see it but not our Brain damaged DR.

  13. prem Kumar mathavan says:

    You have just blown your towering reputation as a political scientist. Although late at least know we know why you are out politics and what your true colours are.

  14. k119 says:

    How can the BN be the more suitable choice now when their rampant stealing of tax payer’s money through needless projects is something the whole world knows? They have doubly fixed the judiciary and now the SPR so that they can remain in power till eternity. Anwar may have his flaws but it is nothing compared to the crimes and outright evil the BN has committed. Chandra’s reply to the question was an indirect act of support for the BN when as a professional he should have stayed neutral. He will now loose the defamation suit and will be consigned to bankruptcy.

  15. lim says:

    Shame on you Chandra !

    When I was a university student years ago, I used to look up to you as a fighter of injustice and a campaigner for human rights. I used to believe you were a principled man who dares to speak out against injustices.

    Anwar has his flaws during yester years but at least I can see that he is now out fighting against injustices, speaking out against corruptions and for a true Malaysian race.

    What about you? It looks to me that you continue to hide behind the ivory tower and happy to be used by the propaganda machine of BN.

    All my respect for you has gone in that instance. Let me just put that down to I was young and naive then.

    Remember. Actions speak louder than words and the only action I see from you is to be used by the political campaign, the very thing that you were fighting against in the past.

  16. Death Note says:

    he still waiting for the right time…
    saspen la beb…

  17. anak malaysia says:

    Chandra who? Never heard of him and he is irrelevant.

  18. wits0 says:

    “Machiavellian politician”, Chandra?

    That’s one term that should be used on Mahathir instead of Anwar on the basis of priority. The former is indisputably a matter of fait accompli. The harms that have been wrought stayed on after him and it will take helluva effort to undo and reverse. Without the opposition we can’t even begin to do so.

  19. Vaseau says:

    The man is clearly handicapped by his curious inability to discern the greater of the two evils in Malaysia today – imperfect politicians emerging from the shadowy world of racial politics and institutionalized corruption made perfect by the “only viable inter-ethnic coalition” he is comforted by. As and when they are available as targets, this justly notorious ‘activist’ uses his erstwhile friends to score political points…perhaps in the hope that someday he will find a permanent home in the hearts of the gullible.

  20. Dr Chandra Muzzafar is merely an escapist. He was all the while, while he was in PKR considered inconsiderately to be a person of abstract ideas. He dwells in utopia and exposes himself to be an idealist. If he had had been a pragmatist and a realist he would boldly defy his Paretorian challenges and come out boldly into the dirty ditches of politics. All he would he can merely comment and be assured a better place in an arm chair. The nation is moving against the odds of enlarging poverty in the Lorenzo curve; inter ethnic relations is at its lowest ebb, its sustainability at the evil clutches of globalization is questionable; minimum wages have become invisible with massive immigrant cheap labour at all places of employment. Malaysians are confronting a lower standard of living. Chandra can help the nation but he likes commenting. Like he is, let him be in earnest.

  21. jedyoong says:


    he was also on radio hong kong, which i listened to online……

  22. kittykat46 says:

    As they say, every man has his price.
    Dr. Chandra’s price is apparently very modest.

  23. tisso73 says:

    Maaf saya menyelah…dari pengamatan saya cara dan gaya dia bercakap seperti cemas, tidak seperti selalu . Adakah mungkin dia diugut atau akan menerima padah jika tidak berkata demikian…

    saya pasti dia dalam keadaan terdesak….cuba perhatikan memek muka raut wajahnya….seperti org bersalah….

    kita tahu siapa Anuar sebenarnya, dialah PEJUANG RAKYAT

  24. tisso73 says:

    nampaknya paklah juga dah cemas.

    entah apa yang dibebelkan dari tadi semenjak jam 7.30 hinggalah 9 pm tadi…kalau boleh semua kebaikan yang dia buat nak diceritakan….yg bagus lagi bila jurubual RTM tu asyik nak angkat Dolah lebih2 pula….

    apa yang dia cakap itu semua tipu yang dia dah buat, cuba perhatikan..tak tidur malamlah hari ini PAK dolahhhh…
    HEBAT DAP – tanpa jemputan, tanpa jamuan makan dan CEO koprat dan tanpa artis ..sambutnya amat menakjubkan.

  25. Harrison bin Hansome says:

    If chandra’s castigation of Anwar was constant, I would give him a benefit of a doubt, but the timing is just days before the election which presents a motive in him.

  26. stenson says:

    However much I dislike anwar,I have a great respect for him.However,a turncoat like chandra is a real disgrace.He does not deserve any respect from any malaysian.Call himself an intellectual – real shit.Shame on you chandra.

  27. wits0 says:

    Harrison, his timing was another clear giveaway wrt to his real motive. he has had plenty of time earlier for his outburst.

  28. Zaki says:


    Chandra is angry at Anwar and PKR because Chandra as a Mamak wants to become a “Malay” by dressing like us as Malays. You get it? Now, UMNO says it is ok if mamaks leave their identity, denounce their culture, they can be given some contracts and be allowed few favours. PKR says, look, be an Indian, a Muslim and a Malaysian. No need to dress like a Malay, after all being a Malay doesn’t guarantee you heaven. So he is angry at being told to be the mamak he is. However, UMNO says we must assimilate all non-Malay Malaysians, which will not work. The second thing he thought he was smart who be pussyfooted, but it never happened.

    What has Anwar done to this man? He was in jail when joined PKR and he was in jail when he left the same party? I’m flabbergasted that praises UMNO warlords like Amiruldin who castigates the handicapped like him as being “cursed.” Mamak!

  29. Zaki says:

    Former DAP MP on Chandra the mamak:

    “In my quite fiery speech delivered just now in English and Cantonese at the Padang of PJS9 Sunway to about 1,000 fellow Subang Jaya/USJ voters of of all races, I publicly challenged Dr. Chandra Muzaffar and his likes to state who on earth has never made mistakes and errors at one point or another in life and what religious teachings or values that do not welcome individual or collective changes for the better ? I also told the audience in no uncertain terms that only a truly united and multi-ethnic Opposition can effectively defend the rights as well as dignity of all Malaysians. Finally, I declared my vote for comrade Hannah Yeoh Tseow Suan and urged all my friends and neighbours to sleep well tonight and go to vote tomorrow for a better future for all.

  30. Klaw says:

    Funny how he tells us he will reveal other factors that disqualify Anwar from a leadership role ‘at the right time’.

    Sounds like he has a scheme/plan in his hands…

  31. merchant222 says:

    Lam Thye was “bought over”, similarly and quite obvious, this DOGter’s agenda all along during his time of fighting for injustice and human rights is seeing the fruits of his labor. Looks like Mamak DOGters cannot be trusted.

  32. hutchrun says:

    We can safely assume that Chandra is not even half the man he portrays himself to be.
    Chandra is the symptom of the malady that UMNO has made Malaysia.

  33. francis says:

    1: hope that the barisan rakyat can organize a state level celevration for this.
    2: remove penang bridge toll collection
    3: improve and widen streets in penang (they are too narrow)
    4: increase foreign investment
    5: make penang a cleaner place
    6: built more houses
    7: speed up construction of monorail
    8: better sign board and tourist friendly places
    9: reduce crimes (petty and serious)
    lastly : good management and listen to RAKYAT’s grouses

    DAP-PKR-PAS ( the reliable new alternative)

  34. billauchris says:

    The pre-election “expose” by Dr Chandra was most uncalled for; particularly coming from a self-righteous academician and a socio-political activist for whom all these years I held high regard.

    Most people in my view can still remember the black eye of Annuar the IGP gave him while he was helplessly detained and blind-folded. The man you so described had suffered enough. For whatever wrong that he might or alleged to have done, he had paid dearly. He and his family had suffered because of the unfounded indictment levelled against him for offences forcibly breathed down upon his throat by his BOSS who wanted to get rid of him and kill him politically. What happened to those who caused him the wrong, the injustices and sufferings? At least I admired the gesture of the IGP who caused him the black eye. He apologised and asked for forgiveness and retired gracefully.

    Annuar is trying to patch back his life and make a come back to fight for a Malaysian Malaysia – one that is reasonably founded on equality and justice and the rule of law. A country whose citizens subscribe to the Rukunegara, who care and share and progress together in unity and harmony for the betterment of all concerned.

    Your attack on Annuar came at a most untimely moment; giving the impression to the whole nation including me that you had been “bought over” by BN to deliver that fatal blow at the man who came back from hell. The effect of that unfair blow awakened and piqued the awareness and conscience of the discerning and forgiving electorate who reacted and voted in support of the opposition.

    I thought all this time Dr, you were a religious man – one who loves, understands. forgives, shares and champions the cause of the down-trodden and marginalised. But, your untimely scathing vilification of Annuar merely showed that you were not what you portrayed to be. The religiously guarded ace had been exposed by your outburst. You have just dented by your conduct the idealism that held dear.

    So Dr, let us be peace loving and forgiving. If you have nothing better to say of your fellow men, hold your tongue. You certainly deserve to be more on the side of the sheep than the goats.

  35. zainudin says:

    hey don’t worry WE believe that you are telling the truth ,Mahathir also said the same about THAT Anwar.In this world ,many good and bad things are hidden ,just like BE END ! after 50 damned years ,Malaysians now realized ,, BN is like Kelate people , once they believe in the truth , they die for IT. I’m ONE of them.. to Pak Lah ,stepdown faster, give way to the right person from PAS not ANWAR ! no not to him!

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