We have yet another attack on free speech and the free press from one of our allies. Malaysian cartoonist Zulkiflee Anwar Alhaque, better known as Zunar, has been hit with nine counts of sedition for tweets critical of the country’s judiciary. It is an outrageous prosecution brought under a law that defines sedition as any comment that promotes hatred toward the government. Zunar previously defended his art against claims that it is defamatory. Zunar faces up to 43 years in jail if found guilty on all nine charges.
The notion of such an abusive prosecution being brought in the name of defending the legal system is truly Orwellian and should be denounced by the entire Malaysian bar if it has an ounce of integrity.
His tweets responded to the start of a five-year term by opposition leader Anwar Ibrahim on a sodomy charge. Zunar tweeted “The lackeys in black robes are proud of their sentence. The rewards from the political masters must be plenty.” He also tweeted that “Today Malaysia is seen as a country without law.” The latter statement shows the interesting disconnect in sedition laws. For defamation, truth is a defense and this is clearly a true statement. However, for sedition, even true statements can be viewed as bringing contempt or hatred toward the government.
The best way to disprove Zunar and to show that Malaysia is a country of laws is to rescind this infamous law. Otherwise, Malaysia is just one more nation standing against the basic principles of human rights and civil liberties.
21 thoughts on “Malaysia Charges Cartoonist With Sedition For Criticizing Its Courts”
America survives at the pleasure of China.
OK. We’re in the “sweet spot.”
Do the Chinese know that and how long will that last?
Richard – some of the Chinese know it and I have no idea how long it will last. It it like predicting the length of the Great Depression.
Paul and Richard
The mall in Vancouver where the signs are in Chinese only and the place was designed to cater to the Chinese in Vancouver as well as those visiting is no different than the thousands of Koreatowns, Chinatowns, and other ethnic towns in cities around the world. Growing up in Victoria and Vancouver we used to go into the ‘Chinatowns’ of both cities for an adventure. Almost nothing was signed in English. Down alleyways there were private clubs and restaurants where whites were dissuaded from going. It was their place, primarily due to the racism and bigotry of the whites. Now due to the need for income and the dissolving of racism with more Chinese integrated in the general public, Chinatowns are colorful places to go and eat and shop. However, the best Chinese food to be found in Vancouver in the seventies was in West Vancouver the Beverly Hills of Vancouver at a restaurant called ‘Hennesey’s’.
The chinatowns of North America developed as enclaves for protection from the racism of the whites. Even the great Jack London wrote articles for newspapers promoting the extermination of Chinese if they were not returned to China. Of course this was after they were brought to the US and Canada to build railways and mines, etc., almost slave labor.
That the Chinese that were looked down upon for centuries have built a modern Chinatown in the form of a mall seems just about right. Those that were escorted out were there to take issue with the place. They were not there to shop.
The Quebec laws that started out banning English and then required French be prominent along with English in smaller print is understandable when you realize that the Quebecer has been forced to a second class citizen position throughout most of the history of Canada. Before the big brouhaha of the sixties and seventies those French Canadian residents of Quebec were treated by the government of Quebec and the Catholic Church in ways to keep them down. The one extreme caused another. The result of all that was that major businesses moved to Toronto and Vancouver, Calgary, Edmonton in the West. Montreal, once the largest and richest city in Canada became second to Toronto. Perhaps it is as it should be. Quebec is predominantly French speaking. They have a unique position. Canada is better off with them than without them. Canada is a richer country in all ways and a paradigm of cohabitation now exists.
This exchange has been as difficult as trying to hit a moving target. Here’s my last try.
China has experienced exponential growth and has surpassed the U.S. as the world’s largest economy, military, space program, etc. The American economy is in decline and the collapse of the Petrodollar is imminent. America’s $18 trillion debt is unpayable as it is experiencing a “phantom” depression.
America “enabled” and funded (i.e. Walmart) China which now has a burgeoning hegemonic influence on America and the entire planet.
What say you; for “ourselves and our posterity?”
Richard – China is over-extended and is starting to recede. Because of the debt that China carries of ours, they cannot afford for us to fail. We are ‘To Big To Fail.’ Everything I said before is still true.
PCS, “hyperbole.” Thanks. I feel a lot better now. For a minute there I thought America would be in trouble if China and the BRICS conspired to devalue the PetroDollar as the Fed prints and the debt exceeds an unpayable $18 trillion. You must be right that even our enemies probably want to preserve America as a marketplace for their goods. They probably don’t want to simply cause America to vanish instantly, right?
Whew! That was a close one, if only in my vivid imagination.
Related to the explosion of China Inc. and Chinese people, Canada is an interesting phenomenon. Recently I heard an anecdote on the radio about a Canadian being escorted out of a Chinese-only mall. Where there’s smoke, there’s fire and there must be basis for the coinage, by Canadians, of the term, “HONGCOUVER.” To wit:
Article in Canadian publication –
“Chinese immigrants have flocked to Canada’s west coast and transformed Vancouver into Canada’s very own Asian metropolis. The days of concern over the city being turned into ‘Hongcouver’ have gone. What does the future hold for Canada’s Asian population?”
P.S. Do you see America in decline, by contrast, or America rising? I guess we leave the future for our progeny to deal with. After the lifting of China’s one-child policy, we may all be speaking Mandarin. It seems the world’s problems, pollution for example, are based on increasing population levels, for which China, India et al. are culpable and have been for centuries.
Richard – the rather large Chinese community where I live speaks various dialects of Cantonese. The Canadians allowed Quebec to require French to be spoken there. You were going off tangent there, which is why I commented.
PCS, try telling the people in British Columbia where Canadians are deluged with Chinese corrupt “hot money” and not, for example, allowed in the local Chinese mall – errant Canadians are escorted out. The BC Chinese “immigrants,” who fled the Hong Kong reversion, and the new American-made Chinese billionaires, have subsumed Vancouver with “hot money” and money “redirected” from America and the Western nations to China (who did that?).
An interesting study is the Chinese “economy” of 1960 contrasted with today’s. American and Western money exploded in China after 1960/70. Who did that? America has gone straight down hill and China’s “communist economy” exploded.
The point is that China and the “BRICS” have a financial nuclear weapon pointed at the PetroDollar as Obama and the liberals perpetuate Western financial decay. America has 100 million non-working people and 50 million on food stamps and the Fed prints “Monopoly” dollars for bankers.
It looks like “leaders” are corrupt everywhere.
It looks like corruption and unmitigated, untempered greed destroyed communist beneficence and American freedom (the latter being the superior, definitively correct and winning model).
It looks like we “bought the rope” from Chairman Mao.
Richard – what you are seeing is the Chinese moving money out of China. Read Adam Smith’s Wealth of Nations and you will understand what is going on.
The rest of what you have written is hyperbole.
Tweeting is for stupids.
NOOO, he’s not anti-religion. LOL!!
What religion has contributed to the world this month – Episode 15 (March 2015)
“It’s China That Matters”
This is an excellent example of how America is on the wrong path. China is setting the stage for brutal hegemony in the near future and we’re focusing on an inanity in Malaysia.
Once a communist model, China is now a “meat-eater;” an “economic monster.” China is lean, mean and incentivized. China’s economic power exceeded the U.S. last year. There is no corporate tax, no property tax and no income tax in China. China taxes consumption. Chinese people cannot vote and pay no taxes other than consumption. Chinese people pay for school and healthcare. Surprisingly, China has no welfare, food stamps or social services – China has no welfare state. Chinese people can’t vote and have very little freedom; just totalitarian hyper-enterprise and plenty of work.
China has formed a global alliance with Russia, Venezuela, et al., to trade oil in Renminbi/Yuan and debase the U.S. Petrodollar, as America prints to pay $18 trillion in debt. China has 1 million “immigrants” in Africa. It has 82 Pacific submarines to America’s 30. China has vastly more space launches that the U.S., has landed on the moon and will build a base there and on Mars. China and Russia agreed to a huge deal to trade oil valued in the Chinese Yuan, not the Petro-Dollar. Russia may have $5.2 billion high-speed rail built by China. China is building skyscrapers in the equivalent of 50 New York Cities. 20 million cars were sold In China which is BMW and GM’s largest market. America owes China $1.3 trillion.
China claims “sovereignty” over the South China Sea and is building military bases as a “great wall of sand.” “China is building artificial land by pumping sand on to live coral reefs — some of them submerged — and paving over them with concrete. China has now created over 4 square kilometers (1.5 square miles) of artificial landmass,” he said. China is pursuing “soft” domination of Myanmar to obtain an Indian Ocean base for it’s burgeoning “blue water” navy.
“The Capitalists will sell us the rope with which we will hang them,” Vladimir Lenin. America has destroyed itself and built China. While Americans are focused on redistribution, self-criticism, attacks on corporations and all the “victims du jour,” China is putting America out of business.
The solution begins with elimination of all taxation except “consumption tax.” Coddling and mollification of special interests and “minorities” must removed from American consciousness. The welfare state must be terminated. Welfare and ridiculous pay levels and “comparable pay” for striking teachers, firemen and all government workers must be eliminated. Government departments and agencies beyond the limits of security and infrastructure must be eliminated. Innovation and free enterprise must be facilitated and not interfered with.
It’s China that matters.
Richard – the Chinese economy is soft and getting softer. It was built on quicksand. Right now they are propping it up, but that cannot go on forever. Xi may be the last chairman of the Communist Party to rule China. I follow China closely (not as close as I hope the CIA) getting my news from both national and international sources, including China News.
And don’t take your eye off Putin.
Their country, their laws. Don’t agree, but there it is.
Anyone ever visit Malaysia? I have. It is a pirate territory. Fly over and flush.
Clearly Malaysia does not want the disinfecting light of public scrutiny in its affairs.
I have mixed emotions on this. As an American, my values tend toward a free press and people pretty much being allowed to say whatever they want. Particularly when it comes to criticizing government. But I try to think like somebody in Malaysia when I read a story like this, and see the world through their eyes.
Is this just the higher up muckety-mucks in Malaysia protecting their turf, or is there a valid reason why these laws are applied? Some of this stuff is not absolute. For example, one of our bestest allies, Germany, outlawed and I think still outlaws, the Nazi party. Viewed in absolute sense, this denies its citizens the right to freely express their political preferences and denies their free speech rights. But as a practical matter, hell yes the damn Nazi party ought to be prohibited! Sheeesh, the Nazi SOBs killed millions and millions of people through war, and also intentionally murdered innocent civilians.
Sooo, it there something like this behind the Malaysian government’s actions? Is a respect/fear of the government more important than a cartoonist b*tching about perceived problems???
Reblogged this on Oyia Brown.
Obama wishes that he could do that to his (few) media critics.
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