The UMNO today, Is Mahathir's UMNO and it's no where close to The Original UMNO (Which was de-registered legally by The High Courts Due To Dr.Mahathir's wrong doings) founded by Dato' Onn Jaffar.
The Damages that Mahathir has done is irreversible. Time and time again He has been the mastermind of "mind programming" the Malays.
Today, The Malays cannot be fooled. UMNO has alarmingly lost the support from Middle Class, Upper Middle Class & High Class Malays. She may rely on the rural lot for now.
Umno, from time to time, beats the drums of war on “political unity”, one of the sacred cows in things Malay. Witness the call for PAS-Umno unity talks and a myriad other stage-managed events since 2008, including, at one time, stomping on a cow’s head to rile the Hindus.
Nowadays, these drumbeats are more a ventilation of the Umno activists’ ignorance of their party’s history, which began with the anti-Malayan Union movement in 1946, although the spiritual roots go further back in the concept of Malay nationalism first espoused by the Jawi Peranakan.
The Jawi Peranakan were the Singapore-born offspring of immigrant Muslims, many of whom came from Kerala, India (see William Roff’s “Origins of Malay Nationalism”).
All nationalisms are defined by what they oppose. Indian nationalism, for example, opposed the idea of the British continuing to rule over large parts of the sub-continent.
Malay nationalism, meant to draw together the Muslims in Malaya and Singapore into a political movement, harped on the economic weakness of the Muslims vis-à-vis the local Chinese.
Malay nationalism eventually saw the departure of the British from Malaya and Singapore, the regaining of independence, and the birth of Malaysia with the coming together of Malaya, Singapore, Sabah and Sarawak in a greater federation.
Subsequently, Malay nationalism saw the expulsion of Chinese-dominated Singapore from Malaysia for being the thorn in Malay economic and political aspirations, the death of the 1963 Malaysia and Malay re-colonisation in 1965 of Dusun Sabah and Dayak Sarawak, the birth of the New Economic Policy (NEP) and the deviations in the implementation of Articles 3, 152 and 153 of the Federal Constitution. The distortion of the constitution led, ultimately, to a backlash from the Indian underclass in 2007, spearheaded by Hindraf Makkal Sakthi.
Malay nationalism is dead in the wake of that backlash. The new nationalism in Malaysia is that of the Dusun and Dayak against Malay neo-colonialism.
It is no longer possible for Malay nationalists to continue to harp on the so-called economic weakness of their community or project the Chinese as the bogeyman to foster Malay political unity under one platform, the platform of Dr Mahathir Mohamad’s Umno Baru.
The Chinese, on their part, have more than a few issues to pick with the Malay nationalists for the manner in which they have been running the country since independence.
So, is it any wonder that the so-called Malay nationalists are looking for new imaginary foes?
The Himpun call for a gathering of one million of the faithful is a case in point of Malay nationalism trying to reinvent itself for the 21st century.
The police, clearly “racist to the core” as more than one commentator has observed, bent over backwards and indeed fell all over themselves in approving the permit for the gathering in record time. Their rationale: “The gathering presented no security threat” and moreover would be confined to a stadium. It is difficult to fathom how the police define “threats to national security”.
The Himpun organisers, who claim a membership of four million members, could only muster between 4,000 and 5,000 people. In stark contrast, the old Umno had the total, undivided, unanimous support of Muslims in Peninsular Malaysia and, at one time, in Singapore.
Umno has lost its moorings on the concept of Malay unity, the Himpun gathering being the latest illustration after the hoo-hah over the Bible being in Malay print and Christians calling out to Allah.
The blame for that loss must lie with Mahathir, who stage-managed the court declaration that Umno was unlawful. Had the court discounted the illegal votes of the 30-odd unlawful branches in the 1987 Umno presidential election, Tengku Razaleigh Hamzah would have won hands down against Mahathir.
The declaration allowed Mahathir to bury the Umno of the anti-Malayan Union movement (and Malay nationalism with it) and initiate the offshoot Umno Baru based on his own perceptions and aimed at fostering dynastic politics, that is, the rotation of political power among a few “Malay” families of Indian, Bugis and other origins. Mahathir also buried his arch enemy Tengku Razaleigh by keeping him and his supporters out of Umno Baru.
To mask the dynastic politics, Umno Baru has since dropped the word “Baru” and claims to be the same party formed by Onn Jaafar at the palace in Johor.
The old Umno, to reiterate, was a mass-based democratic movement, a coming together of several thousand Malay associations.
This is not something that the present elitist Umno sponsored by Mahathir can claim.
Hence, the disconnect in Malay politics that continues to bedevil the community and gives space to PKR and PAS. The latter is a party of Islamists or fundamentalists who broke away from the old Umno shortly after its formation.
Mahathir’s Umno is clearly in its death throes, as illustrated by the continuing estrangement with the breakaway PAS, the timing and manner of the departure of Anwar Ibrahim (now the de facto PKR leader), the alienation of the Ghafar Baba family which contributed so much to Malay nationalism, the alienation of Tengku Razaleigh, the alienation of the Malay rulers and, in general, the alienation of the Malay masses.
Mahathir’s Umno is dying also because of the raging corruption that has driven up the cost of doing business, alienated investors and the Chinese business community, continues to keep the rural masses down through the dependency syndrome and brought the once docile Indian underclass out onto the streets.
Above all, Mahathir’s Umno is dying because the Malays cannot reconcile themselves with the death of the old Umno at his hands.
Again, Mahathir’s Umno is headed for the dustbin of history because Malay nationalism is dead and this is something no number of Himpuns and Christian-baiting can mask.
UMNO Has Lost Malay Middle Class
Barking Up The Wrong Tree