Najib’s week of victories

Last week has been a week of victories for Najib. Two years after the launch of the attacks on him, Najib has got the opposition not only on the run but running around in circles as well. From the visit of the Saudi King to Kit Siang’s latest ranting in his blog to the appeal for clemency by Anwar’s lawyers and the PAN leader suing Berita Harian, the opposition appears to have lost it and is spending more time on damage control than on attacking.


Raja Petra Kamarudin

Those in the know knew that Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad ‘had plans’ for Prime Minister Najib Tun Razak when soon after the May 2013 general election the former started criticising the latter. At first it was a ‘mild criticism’ and basically ‘recycled’ issues that had earlier been used against Prime Minister Tun Abdullah Ahmad Badawi from 2006 to 2009.

It was clear that Mahathir was just testing the waters to see how far he could go with attacking Najib. When it was apparent that the criticism was not gaining any momentum, Mahathir had to step back a bit and reconsider his strategy. He cannot attack Najib the way he had attacked Abdullah and hope that the Prime Minister would step down.

Muhyiddin had been working on 1MDB for a year before he brought it to Mahathir to use against Najib

Najib was not going to step down like Abdullah did. Najib would need to be ousted or pushed out. And it has to be with great force against the backdrop of very serious charges. And that was when Deputy Prime Minister Muhyiddin Yassin brought the issue of 1MDB to Mahathir’s attention in 2014 and suggested that this issue would be strong enough to oust Najib.

In fact, the groundwork to sabotage 1MDB so that it would fail, and hence can be used against Najib, already started the year before that in 2013. The fact that the IPO and bank loans for 1MDB were blocked was not coincidental but designed to ‘starve’ 1MDB of its much-needed cash injection. Without funding and with its over-gearing 1MDB was sure to fail. And when it does this will be the golden bullet to assassinate Najib with.

Even more crucial to this plan would be to link the RM2.6 billion donation that Najib received from Arab sources to 1MDB. They have to spin the story that the RM2.6 billion was stolen from 1MDB and not a donation from Arab sources. And the ANC (Anti-Najib Campaign) propaganda team went into overdrive and employed foreign bloggers and journalists to achieve that.

Khairuddin and Matthias Chang fired the first shot to launch the ANC attack on Najib

The ‘official launch’ of the ANC took place in December 2014 with Khairuddin Abu Hassan’s police report and in January and February 2015 Mahathir started putting his army together. They had just five-six months to work because by July 2015 Najib was supposed to be history. The six months blitz was so severe that many did not believe Najib would survive beyond July 2015. The fact that Najib remained silent and did not respond convinced many that the Prime Minister’s ‘loss for words’ was an indication that he was conceding defeat.

But Najib’s silence was a ‘diam berisi’, as the Malays would say. It was not that Najib was at a loss for words. It is that he was observing, planning and strategising his counter-attack. And when the counter-attack came it was swift, decisive, devastating and complete. In one swoop at the end of July and early August 2015 the rebellion was put down, the betrayal punished, and the adversaries beheaded.

July 2015 was the most exciting period in Najib’s political career, if not the most exciting event in Malaysian political history, at par with how Mahathir got rid of Anwar Ibrahim in September 1998. July 2015 will not only be remembered but will be studied by students of politics for years to come. July 2015 was what many regard as Najib snatching victory from the jaws of defeat. That was also when many decided they wanted to be in Najib’s team in the fight against the ANC because if Najib could pull that off then he is definitely a political genius.

Najib has proven to be more of a political genius than Mahathir, Muhyiddin, Kit Siang and Anwar

Najib has learned to not melatah like what Mahathir, Lim Kit Siang and all those others do. All you need to do is to read Mahathir’s and Kit Siang’s blog postings of late to see how they melatah. In the beginning Mahathir and Kit Siang were on attack mode. The last few blog postings since early this year have shown that Mahathir and Kit Siang are now on defence mode. They complain and grumble about how they have been unfairly attacked whereas over the last few years they have been attacking Najib. It seems that Mahathir and Kit Siang cannot take their own medicine after all.

Najib’s latest coup is the visit of Saudi Arabia’s King Salman Abdulaziz Al Saud to Malaysia. Kit Siang says that just because the King visited Malaysia that does not mean His Highness is admitting that the RM2.6 billion came from Arab sources and was not stolen from 1MDB.

Kit Siang is so myopic and narrow-minded. He is still playing the old song from two years ago that the RM2.6 billion was stolen from 1MDB. Kit Siang is behind time. The King’s visit is not about the RM2.6 billion to fund the previous general election of four years ago. It is about funding the next general election that is around the corner. Kit Siang is what the Malays would call ketinggalan zaman.

Najib knows that Mahathir’s trustees, nominees, proxies and cronies are not going to fund Umno and Barisan Nasional in the next general election. In fact, they have already set aside RM3 billion to help fund Pakatan Harapan thinking that at the eleventh hour PKR will be able to convince PAS to return to the opposition coalition and they can then face Umno-Barisan Nasional on a one-to-one or straight fight basis.

As Rafizi said, with PAS as part of the opposition coalition, and if they face Umno-Barisan Nasional on a one-to-one or straight fight, the opposition can win at least 125 of the 222 seats in Parliament. All they need is 112, so with 125 seats they are assured of forming the next federal government. And they are putting aside RM3 billion to make sure that Pakatan Harapan can march into Putrajaya.

The Saudi King’s silent and unspoken message is that Najib has rich and powerful friends

Najib knows he is not going to get any funding from these people in spite of the fact that most of that money belongs to Umno but held by Mahathir’s trustees, nominees, proxies and cronies. This happened in 2013, which was why Najib had to seek external funding such as the RM2.6 billion from Arab sources. And for sure this time around it is going to be the same — Mahathir’s trustees, nominees, proxies and cronies who are holding Umno’s money are not going to hand over one sen.

Anyway, even if they promise to hand over RM2 billion or RM3 billion to Umno-BN after Parliament has been dissolved, they can always do a U-turn at the last minute and not hand over any money. And that would mean the Umno-BN election machinery will collapse just days before Polling Day. So it would be safer to not depend on Mahathir’s trustees, nominees, proxies and cronies and instead work with external sources, like in the 2013 general election.

The fly-on-the-wall told me that the Saudi King is aware of Najib’s predicament. And unless Najib can sort out his financial requirements to fund the next general election there is a danger that Malaysia would fall into the hands of an anti-Islam, DAP-led Ali Baba coalition. And this is not in the interest of the Muslim world, which is Saudi Arabia’s priority. There are enough Muslim countries under kafir control. They do not need Malaysia added to that list.

In fact, it was the Saudi King’s decision or idea to visit Malaysia. Kit Siang condemned Najib and said that it was what the Saudi King did not say that is more important than what His Highness said. This is where Kit Siang is ignorant about Palace Protocol.

Kit Siang has misread the implications of the Saudi King’s visit

Do you remember one military coup they had in Thailand years ago which the Queen helped end? The tanks had surrounded the parliament building in Bangkok and it was a Mexican standoff with neither side backing down. The military was ‘trapped’ outside while the parliamentarians were trapped inside and it was now down to a case of who blinks first. The Thai King said nothing but the Queen paid parliament a visit, while also saying nothing. The military then laid down their arms and went home and the coup ended.

So you see, the Thai King did not utter a word. All that happened was his Queen visited parliament. And that sent the message to the military, who then laid down their arms and left without a shot being fired, hence ending the coup that was threatening to become very bloody.

So, the Saudi King need not say anything, as what Kit Siang grumbled about. Kings and Queens do not make loud statements. They make silent or unspoken statements. All the Saudi King needs to do is to pay Najib a visit. And that ‘picture’ is worth 1,000 words, as the saying goes. And only a person like Kit Siang who is totally ignorant of the way Royals do things would interpret the Saudi King’s silence regarding the RM2.6 billion as negative instead of the fact that the King paying Najib a visit is worth all the tea in China.


Khalid is taking Berita Harian to court to prove that PAN is not DAP’s Ali Baba or running dog

Kit Siang is actually trying to downplay the Saudi King’s visit because he knows this will seriously impact the Malay votes for Pakatan Harapan. Even PAN’s Khalid Samad knows they are not gaining support from the Malay voters, which is why he is taking Berita Harian to court (READ: Amanah leader sues daily for misreporting views on Hadi’s bill).

Kit Siang was hoping that PAN and Pribumi would be able to take away the Malay votes from PAS and Umno but it looks like this is not going to happen after all. That was why Selangor Menteri Besar Azmin Ali said he has not closed the door on PAS and will still try to persuade that Islamic party to rejoin the opposition coalition.

Kit Siang thought he could get many ex-Umno leaders to join the opposition and then use them against Umno. But all those ex-Umno leaders who have joined the opposition are regarded as political pariahs. So that move has actually backfired. The Malays who support DAP’s Chinese agenda are seen as traitors. And the Saudi King’s endorsement of Najib has made it an uphill battle for DAP to win the hearts and minds of the Malays.

A Chinaman like Kit Siang will not understand the impact of the Saudi Arabian King’s visit. To the Malays this is a big thing. Najib already said back in December 2016 that the next general election is going to be a contest between a Malay- or Umno-led Barisan Nasional and a Chinese- or DAP-led Pakatan Harapan. Basically Pakatan Harapan is an Ali Baba coalition with the Chinese as the real power behind the throne.

Najib’s credentials amongst the Muslims has gone up a few notches. Even many in PAS are impressed with it. The next general election is going to be an entirely different ballgame from the previous two general elections. Kit Siang knows this and that is why he is running scared. And with enough funding to match Mahathir’s RM3 billion, the next general election is more or less assured for Umno-Barisan Nasional and probably an even more impressive win than the 2008 and 2013 general elections.