翻译 ∶DOMINIC LOH
It's Utusan Malaysia again. Like an automatic artillery that has gone out of control.
On its front cover two days ago, it published a picture of PM Najib attending a Sikh festivity.
Najib was at a Sikh temple in KL, and surrounded by enthusiastic Sikhs, he made a capati on the spot.
The same photo, which was published in almost every other newspaper, augurs well with Najib's "One Malaysia" concept to mould a truly united and amicable environment, while protruding the new prime minister's approachable image.
Everything has been perfectly normal, up to this point.
But on top of the picture, there was this bold headline: "Bangkitlah Melayu!" (Rise up Malays).
These two words were transmitted from the reader's pupils straight up to the brain, and got blasted off in the central nervous system.
That, was the cover story on that day.
Any sensible soul could tell this was not news, but "non-news" willfully designed by the newspaper's editors.
To put it in a more crude manner, some kind of specific agenda had been created.
In line with that agenda, the newspaper interviewed some controversial figures from a few right-wing Malay organisations, including Ibrahim Ali, who talked about disunity in the Malay community and weakening of their political forces, paving way for the Chinese and Indians to bring up "excessive" demands.
The main point was: the Malays must rise up and stay united to oppose the increasingly excessive demands from non-bumiputras!
Reading the headline, and comparing that to the picture of Najib attending the Sikh festivity, I couldn't help but shook my head in bewilderment.
I didn't know whether I should laugh or cry over such a glaring antithesis.
This is some kind of "anti-climax," like a child suddenly shrieks and bursts into tears just as the movie reaches a climax in the cinema hall.
Good heavens, the emotion is lost, the atmosphere gone, and the movie no longer captures the audience's hearts.
The "One Malaysia" concept so painstakingly designed by the prime minister is now poured with cold water by this UMNO-controlled daily.
The new prime minister has repeatedly urged Malaysians to walk out of their racial confines and stay united.
I can't imagine what will happen if a Chinese newspaper has churned out a similarly toned headline: "Rise up Chinese!"
But one thing we can be sure of: Nothing is going to happen to Utusan Malaysia, and the newspaper can continue to play up racial issues and manipulate racial emotions.
It can stay solitarily outside the "One Malaysia," and embrace its own version of Malaysia.