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Malaysia

Malaysia: Bringing power to the people (+video)

By Stephanie Sta Maria

PETALING JAYA, Malaysia, August 6, 2010 -- Free Malaysia Today -- Kota Damansara assemblyman and Socialist Party of Malaysia (PSM) chairman Nasir Hashim is a realist. But he is also fond of quoting Argentinian revolutionary Che Guevara to “be realistic and do the impossible”.

And Nasir is doing the impossible: he is spearheading an ambitious project to eradicate urban poverty in a small community in the vicinity of Ara Damansara, Petaling Jaya.

The project has a bold vision. It will empower the poor not only by developing their skill sets but also by encouraging a mindset shift from that of victim to victor. The project also aims to have various parties – federal and Selangor governments, businesses, non-governmental organisations and local communities – working hand-in-hand to achieve this vision. It is a radical concept and one that could be seen as remarkably idealistic.

Malaysia: Barricades greet anti-ISA vigils, 36 arrested

By Lee Way Loon and Hazlan Zakaria

August 1, 2010 -- Malaysiakini -- Riot police barred activists from holding candlelight vigils to commemorate the Internal Security Act's 50th anniversary in eight places around the country.

At Dataran MBPJ, Padang Timur in Petaling Jaya, Selangor -- which saw the earliest vigil begin at 8pm -- members of the police Light Strike Force (LSF) began dispersing the 300-strong crowd just as the latter began singing while marching from the mall, through the adjacent car park and towards the field across the main road.

As they approached the field, they were confronted by a wall of LSF shields wielded by about 30 riot police, backed by another 50 uniformed police.

Malaysia: PSM congress debates relationship with opposition Pakatan Rakyat

June 9, 2010 -- The Socialist Party of Malaysia's 12th Congress was held in Kuala Lumpur on June 5-6, 2010. Three hundred delegates from nine states, and allied organisationd and grassroots committees, attended. The congress was officiated by the PSM’s national chairperson Comrade Nasir Hashim. Three papers were presented on the environmental crisis facing the world, leadership transition in PSM and the Malaysian governments economic policies. Resolutions (see below) were debated on the second day touching on idelogical questions, local government elections and the PSM's relationship with the opposition Pakatan Rakyat.

PSM's 12th Congress resolutions

Malaysia: Najib's flirtation with imperialist US and his support for plot against Iran

By the Socialist Party of Malaysia (Parti Sosialis Malaysia, PSM)

April 19, 2010 -- The bilateral meeting between Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Tun Razak and US President Barack Obama served nothing but the submission of the Malaysian government to the imperialist US as its new foot soldiers of “war on terror” in South-East Asia.

Prime Minister Najib recently attended the two-day Nuclear Security Summit in Washington, which achieved very little in promoting disarmament, but created conditions for stepping up sanctions against Iran, a country in the oil-rich region that has refused to subordinate itself to US Imperialism. It has become clear that Obama's foreign policy is far from breaking with the aggressive expansionist approach under the Bush administration, but is more in line with the imperialist goal of achieving military domination of the world.

Malaysia: Solidarity protest with Thai people's movement for democracy

Protest outside th Thai embassy in Kuala Lumpur. Dr Nasir Hashim (left) and S. Arutchelvan (right).

April 14, 2010 -- Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia -- Today, a delegation of 30 people led by the Socialist Party Malaysia (PSM) staged a protest at the Royal Thai Embassy in Kuala Lumpur. Those present included Dr. Nasir Hashim (chairperson of the PSM and Selangor state assemblyperson for Kota Damansara ), Dr Jeyakumar Devaraj (central committe member of PSM and federal member of parliament for Sungai Siput), and S. Arutchelvan (secretary-general of the PSM). There were also representatives of Suaram, a leading human rights organisation in Malaysia, as well as a representative from the Student Federation of Thailand.

According to Arutchelvan, the purpose of this action is to voice concern over the situation in Thailand as well as to condemn the brutal crackdown on Red Shirt protesters on April 10. Dr Jeyakumar said the Red Shirts' demand for a fresh election is a fair demand and the Thai government should recognise the democratic rights of the people to protest and to choose their government. Choo Chon Kai, PSM international coordinator, then read PSM's demands in the memorandum.

Malaysia's Socialist Party: `People's power politics in practice'

PSM member of the national parliament, Dr. Jeyakumar (far right), its national chairperson and Selangor state assemblyperson, Dr. Nasir Hashim (second from right) , and the party’s three municipal councillors publicly declare their assets.

By Peter Boyle

March 24, 2010 -- The Socialist Party of Malaysia (PSM) is extraordinary in many ways and on March 18 its member of the national parliament, Dr Jeyakumar, its national chairperson and Selangor state assemblyperson, Dr. Nasir Hashim, and the party’s three municipal councillors became the only politicians in Malaysia to publicly declare their assets. The declaration of assets and presentation of annual performance reports has become a routine for the party since 2008 when the PSM had its first electoral victories.

The PSM's political representatives are also obliged to give 40% of their income to the party but have been doing more than that. “This is people's power politics in practice. We come in poor and we go out poor”, explained Dr Nasir.

In addition, the PSM's representatives stick by the following principles:

Malaysian socialists lead protests against full-paying patient scheme

March 1, 2010 -- Malaysiakini -- The Malaysian government’s full-paying patient (FPP) scheme has again come under fire from the Coalition Against Health Service Privatisation, which held simultaneous pickets outside four public hospitals nationwide.

NONEIn the Klang Valley, short pickets by small groups were held at the Serdang and Sungai Buloh hospitals.

A similar protest took place outside the Hospital Sultanah Bahiyah Alor Setar, Kedah, and Hospital Sultan Ismail, Pandan, Johor.

At the Sungai Buloh hospital, Kota Damansara assemblyperson Dr Mohd Nasir Hasim, from the Socialist Party of Malaysia (PSM, Parti Sosialis Malaysia), led about a dozen people in denouncing the scheme which the government had initiated in 2007.

According to Nasir, the FPP scheme pilot project in Hospital Selayang has proven detrimental to both doctors and patients.

Malaysia: Two-party system – and a ‘third force’?

Socialist Party of Malaysia MP Jeyakumar Devaraj addresses a rally against the free trade agreement between Malaysia and the United States.

By Jeyakumar Devaraj

February 11, 2010 -- Aliran Monthly -- Malaysia has only known one ruling coalition in the past 52 years since independence. But the result of the March 2008 election has led to rising hope among many Malaysians that an enormous change might be around the corner – a two-party system under which the people are free to choose between two coalitions, which are both capable of governing the country.

The purpose of this paper is to locate the institution of a two-coalition system against a wider historical perspective.

The concept that every person has an equal right to select the government irrespective of his or her social status, wealth, education, religious affiliation or beliefs is a revolutionary idea. And it is relatively new.

Malaysian socialist: `We are growing in influence, especially among the working class'

PSM activist Sivaranjani Manickam. Photo by Alex Bainbridge.

By Simon Butler

January 22, 2010 -- For decades, there was no socialist party of significance in Malaysia. But in 2009, the Socialist Party of Malaysia (PSM) made some impressive gains. The party more than doubled in size and had members elected to state and national parliament for the first time. PSM activist Sivaranjani Manickam attended the Socialist Alliance national conference, held in Sydney in early January, 2010. She told Green Left Weekly that the recent growth in support for the party helped force the Malaysian government to finally grant it legal recognition after a 10-year battle.

Socialist Party of Malaysia: `No more racism! Freedom of religion to all!

Statement by Socialist Party of Malaysia central committee

PSM condemns attacks on churches! Najib and Hishamuddin should take full responsibility!

January 8, 2010 -- The Parti Socialist Malaysia (PSM) is shocked to learn that three churches have been attacked in the last 12 hours in the Klang Valley – the Assumption Church in Jalan Templer, Petaling Jaya, the Life Chapel in Section 17, Petaling Jaya, and the Metro Tabernacle Church in Desa Melawati, Kuala Lumpur. The three-storey Metro Tabernacle church in Desa Melawati, part of the Assemblies of God movement, was set ablaze in the attack which took place around midnight.

We cannot deny the fact that the attacks are somehow related to the High Court ruling last week which ruled in favour of allowing the Catholic Weekly Herald newspaper, which used the word "Allah" as a translation for “God” in its Malay-language section. The ruling however was suspended on January 6 pending an appeal by the government.

Socialist Party of Malaysia: ‘Real power comes from the people’


Scenes from Socialism 2009. Photos by Paul Benedek. Made with Slideshow Embed Tool.

By Paul Benedek, Kuala Lumpur

More than 200 activists, including a large proportion of youth and women, packed Kuala Lumpur’s Chinese Assembly Hall for the first day of Socialism 2009, an annual conference organised by the Socialist Party of Malaysia (PSM). It took place November 14 and 15.

Statement Bersama: Hormati Hak Asasi Manusia – Bebaskan Para Pengungsi! Tolak “Solusi Indonesia” Buatan Australia!

[Klik di sini untuk artikel-artikel Links dalam Bahasa Indonesia]

Statement Bersama oleh Australian Socialist Alliance; Socialist Party (Australia); Parti Sosialis Malaysia (PSM); Jaringan Rakyat Tertindas (JERIT), Malaysia; CWI Malaysia; Konfederasi Kongres Aliansi Serikat Buruh Indonesia (KASBI); Perhimpunan Rakyat Pekerja (PRP); Partai Persatuan Pembebasan Nasional (PAPERNAS); Front Nasional Perjuangan Buruh Indonesia (FNPBI); Socialist Worker New Zealand; Socialist Alternative (Australia); Partido Lakas ng Masa, Philipina; Transform Asia, Philipina; Labour Party Pakistan; Resistance (Australia); Militan-Indonesia; Socialist Appeal New Zealand; Partido ng Manggagawa, Philippines; Asia-Pacific Bureau of the World Federation of Trade Unions (WFTU)

5 November 2009 – Penghormatan terhadap Hak Asasi Manusia telah dibuang ke laut oleh pemerintah Australia, Indonesia dan Malaysia ketika mereka menolak gelombang baru pencari suaka Tamil yang melarikan diri menghindari perang dan penindasan di Sri Lanka dan malahan mengancam mereka seperti kriminal.

Joint statement: Respect human rights -- free the refugees! Reject Australia's 'Indonesian solution'! Welcome the asylum seekers

Australian Customs commandos with Oceanic Viking in the background. Photo: ABC.

Joint statement by the Australian Socialist Alliance; Socialist Party (Australia); Socialist Party of Malaysia (PSM); Network of the Oppressed People (JERIT), Malaysia; CWI Malaysia; Confederation Congress of Indonesian Union Alliance (KASBI); Working Peoples Association (PRP), Indonesia; National Liberation Party of Unity (PAPERNAS), Indonesia; Indonesian National Front for Labor Struggle (FNPBI); Socialist Worker New Zealand; Socialist Alternative (Australia); Partido Lakas ng Masa, Philippines; Transform Asia; Labour Party Pakistan; Resistance (Australia); Militan-Indonesia; Asia-Pacific Bureau of the World Federation of Trade Unions (WFTU); Socialist Appeal New Zealand; Partido ng Manggagawa, Philippines; Solidarity (Australia)

Socialist Party of Malaysia: `Stop collusion with Sri Lankan govt! Stop repatriation of Sri Lankan refugees!

By Dr. Jeyakumar Devaraj

October 22, 2009 -- The Socialist Party of Malaysia (PSM) is concerned for the safety and wellbeing of the 207 Sri Lankan asylum seekers who are being held at the Immigration Detention Centre at the Kuala Lumpar International Airport (KLIA), as well as the 108 Sri Lankan refugees detained at the Pekan Nanas Immigration Detention Centre.

According to our sources, there are 15 women and six children among the 207 Sri Lankans who were picked up at a road block in Batu Pahat 10 days ago before being transported to the KLIA for detention. Out of the 108 people detained at Pekan Nenas Immigration Detention Centre, there are 10 women and 10 children. One of the women is in her eighth month of pregnancy. It was also reported that the Sri Lankan embassy, including the deputy high commissioner ,were forcing a group of Sri Lankan refugees to sign agreements for repatriation. The refugees refused to sign the agreements and the embassy personnel assaulted them by beating and kicking them to force them to sign the agreement.

The rise and fall of the Communist Party of Thailand

By Pierre Rousset

September 9, 2009 -- ESSF -- The communist movement was first established in Siam (renamed Thailand in 1939) mostly in the Chinese ethnic migrant communities, then proliferated in the seemingly disparate surrounding regions in the north, northeast and south of the country. Following a long, difficult period of transition, the Communist Party of Thailand (CPT), once an urban party, retreated to the jungle and engaged in armed struggle. Its national expansion, during the 1970s, occurred while the kingdom was transformed into a US base for military intervention in the Vietnam War. The party eventually saw its decline during the Sino-Indochinese conflict of 1978–9 and disappeared from sight in the mid-1980s.

Industrial action for peace: The Communist Party of Australia and antiwar activity before 1960

[Douglas Jordan was politicised in England in the late 1960s. After arriving in Australia he joined the Socialist Youth Alliance/Socialist Workers League/Socialist Workers Party, in which where he remained a member for 14 years. Today he is a community activist and co-presenter of the City Limits radio program on Melbourne's 3CR.

[After working as a tram conductor in Melbourne and Adelaide he was replaced by a ticket machine in 1998 and so lost his lifetime profession. He returned to study and is now writing his PhD thesis. The thesis -- of which this article is an excerpt -- is a detailed examination of the extent to which Communist Party of Australia union activists raised political issues in their unions.

[In particular it looks at the peace movement, attitudes to the post-war migration program and the Aboriginal struggle for human rights. There was been a general perception that Communist Party union activists were nothing more than industrial militants. The thesis aims to challenge this and show that CPA members often raised political issues and sought support for them from their co-workers.]

* * *

By Douglas Jordan

Malaysia: People's power defeats evictions at Kampung Buah Pala -- for now

By the Socialist Party of Malaysia

August 13, 2009 -- Pulau Pinang, Malaysia -- PSM -- Today was the moment of truth for Kampung Buah Pala villagers. It was the third time that their homes have faced demolition. But it was the first time that the local villagers outnumbered the outsiders who were the majority during the previous attempt on August 4. Today, when the police, the developer and the bailiff came, the villagers did not have the luxury of the presence of state assemblymen, MPs, the state government representative or even lawyers. Only a handful of Socialist Party of Malaysia (PSM, Parti Sosialis Malaysia) members and Hindraf [a civil rights organisation] supporters were with the villagers.

Malaysia: 40,000 demand `Abolish the Internal Security Act now!', hundreds arrested

By S. Arutchelvan

August 1, 2009 -- Parti Sosialis Malaysia -- The 40,000-strong mobilisation today in Kuala Lumpur and the thousands who did not make it because of police roadblocks gave a very clear and precise message to Malaysia's Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak: repeal the draconian Internal Security Act (ISA).

Malaysian socialists call for communist veteran Chin Peng to be allowed home

Chin Peng.

May 31, 2009 -- Malaysiakini -- The Socialist Party of Malaysia (PSM, Parti Sosialis Malaysia) became the latest party to urge the government to allow former Communist Party of Malaya (CPM) chief Chin Peng to return home for good. The PSM said the government must honour the peace accord that it signed with the Communist Party of Malaya in 1989 and allow former CPM leader Chin Peng to return.

“The government should not backtrack on the peace accord and deny the rights promised to the former communist leader”, said PSM secretary-general S. Arutchelvan.

Malaysian socialist MP on `free market fallacies'

Michael Jeyakumar Devaraj delivers his speech. Photo by PSM.

By Dr Michael Jeyakumar Devaraj

May 18, 2009 -- The Nut Graph -- The Socialist Party of Malaysia (PSM) organised a fundraising dinner at the Petaling Jaya Civic Centre on May 9, 2009, which was attended by some 600 members, friends and supporters. I was invited to give a short speech, and this is what I said:

Friends,

Humankind is facing a serious crisis. On one hand we are witnessing the unfolding of a recession many experts think will be the worst since the Great Depression of the 1930s. Recessions are commonplace in the free-market economy. They occur once every 10 or so years.

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