Sunday, September 14, 2008

ARMED FORCES CELEBRATE ITS 75TH ANNIVERSARY

Come September 16, 2008, the Malaysian Armed Forces will celebrate its 75th Anniversary. That date also coincides with the Birthday Celebration of TYT Yang DiPertua Negeri Sabah, which is a declared public holiday for the state. One can also associate September 16 with the purported date of the change over of government from BN to PR, which has now been deferred; so says Anwar.

Having left the Armed Forces for a decade now, my love and spirit for the uniform has not withered the least. I still hold dear to the military friends that I had; many have since retired and some of my subordinate officers are now holding high positions. It is unfortunate that none of my children are in the military to continue my legacy. But this is not so for the Indian Armed Forces, especially among the Sikh community. A Sikh classmate of mine whom I had befriended while a student at the Defence Services Staff College, India says that he is a third generation army officer to have served the Indian Army. Both his father and grandfather were army officers, and he has no qualms about getting his son to join the army. He says that the Sikh community in India places the military profession in high esteem.

I watched the Merdeka Parade on TV recently, and was awed by the impressive show displayed by members of the Armed Forces. In just ten years, I see a different kind of army. Its equipments are not the ones that I had seen while I was in the army before. The air force too displayed their ability and skill to handle advanced fighter aircrafts. As I sat watching the parade with my 11 year old grandson by my side, I wondered if he will be the one to follow my career path later, as he grows up.

My thoughts now goes to the many officers and soldiers of the Armed Forces who had placed their lives in defence of the country, especially those who had served the Second World War, Malaysia-Indonesian Confrontation, the first Malayan Emergency and 'second emergency'. Many lost their lives, and some others maimed for life, and their sacrifices are never forgotten. Mention is always being made in speeches during Armed Forces Day.

And my thought specially goes to Tun General Ibrahim Ismail now in his late 80's, who had served during the Second World War and the rest. He is a towering figure of a true general and a leader of men. I would have thought that his rightful place during the Merdeka Parade, was to be seated besides the King, and be attired in full military regalia. This is the sort of honour that the Armed Forces should have accorded him, and in all military functions.

I bless the Armed Forces and its able leadership, and to move ahead in building a strong and formidable Armed Forces.

9 comments:

WaliMuar said...

Dato,
Jangan mimpi la orang politik ni nak kenang jasa kita, mereka ni jadikan kita kuda aje. Sebab tu saya sumpah keluarga saya jangan masuk tentera atau polis ,kerja sia sia.

ArshadRaji said...

Saudara Walimuar,

Saya faham akan ketidak kesediaan saudara serta keluarga memasuki perkhidmatan tentera atau polis. Tapi, siapa pula akan mempertahankan negara kita ini bilamana berlaku sesuatu? Tidak kah anak anak kita?

maurice said...

Saya rasa kita jangan risau.ATM masih mampu menarik anak-anak muda yang berkeliber memileh profesyen ketenteraan melalui skim pendidikan yang menarik dan skim imbuhan yang senantiasa dipertingkatkan.

Braveheart said...

Sir
Thank you for your generous albeit kind compliments in the previous posting. I only endeavoured to provide a holistic opinion on the issue. Regards.
Lyneham

Braveheart said...

Sir
The MAF is relatively a young organisation both chronologically and experience wise. It is still undergoing transformation from a colonial force towards God Willing, a full spectrum force. What may be required now is a rebranding process, from that of a dominant security entity into a multi-dimensional albeit adaptable organisation. The MAF was once viewed by society as a symbol of patriotism unflinchingly sacrificing itself against the Communist. Now that the Emergency is over, society at large becomes complecent and newer pseudo-'patriots' from sportsmen to cosmonauts appearing. Should MAF wait for the next conflict to reassert itself? Would the current PR approach using raw patriotism (sacrifice et al) appeal to modern society insulated from conflict? An indepth consumer (societal) study must be undertaken in the nearest future to assist the MAF in rebranding itself to meet the behaviour of modern society. Take the brand 'Kiwi' which was synonamous to shoe polish at one time. Today it has rebranded itself to include other cleaning agents thus appealing to modern consumers. On the same note, the MAF ought to rebrand itself by being seen not only as willing to sacrifice but also willing to preserve and develop society. How is this to be undertaken? I suggest that a new breed of warriors be produced incorporating traditional military values and contemporary intellectualism. This may be seen as an oxymoron but to cite an example, Left Col Jonathan Netanyahu, the Isreali commando chief and the sole military casualty at the Entebbe Raid in 1972 was a qualified commando and a Phd holder from Yale U, USA. Something for MAF to ponder.

WaliMuar said...

Dato,

Maksud saya kata begitu oleh kerana tidak adil, cuma Melayu miskin sahaja yang sebok nak masuk askar dan polis, dimanakah perginya anak anak Tan Sri , pembesar negara dan bangsa lain.Tanggung jawab mempertahankan negara ini sepatutnya dikongsi oleh semua tidak kira ugama,bangsa,status dan sebagai nya. Semua mesti menyumbang barulah adil namanya.PLKN tu tukar jadi National Service, ni tidak kalau tengok advert kat TV tu mereka cuma seronok seronok aje. Bukankah lebih elok ditukar kepada "National Service"....kalau apa apa berlaku kepada Malaysia ini sama sama susah dan sama sama berperang........

maurice said...

Sdr Walimuar,

Saya setuju dengan saranan saudara supaya PLKN ditukar kepada National Service.Cadangan anda perlu diperbincangkan di peringkat Parlimen.

WaliMuar said...

Dear maurice,

Please vote me to Parliment and become The Minister of Defence I will do exactly what I wrote.

ArshadRaji said...

Dear All,

Saya gentar dengan semangat kelian. Defence is everyone's responsiblity; not those from the kampungs only.