Thursday, February 17, 2011


Hosni Mubarak’s 30 odd years of absolute rule now remains a legacy. With over 300 dead as a result of the protest and Mubarak himself is reportedly unwell, Egyptians will no longer need to look back; rather they will have to look forward to see what future lies ahead of them.

Will it be a government that mirrors Mubarak’s near totalitarian regime, or will it be a more tolerant and people centric government that is centered upon the universal democratic values and principal? I think the Egyptian people; especially those that are in their late 20’s have known no other President except Hosni Mubarak who had ruled them in a way that their lives are shaped and molded along values that restricts and represses all form of opposition towards the regime, and not values that a truly democratic society would understands.

By now, most if not all students from Malaysia are safely home, after a heart breaking period of planning and the execution of plans to evacuate students and other Malaysians out of Egypt by all possible means. It was reported that the evacuation numbers in excess of 10,000 Malaysians; a phenomenal figure unheard off in the past. Due credit must be given to the government and all others that had toiled endlessly to make the evacuation a success.

Having said that and the government having had the experience to execute an effective and successful evacuation plan, though not devoid of frustration and anger, should not just rest on its laurel. Like in all military operations and at the end of it, we say that we now have to conduct a post mortem of the operation i.e. a winding up session to identify the strength and weaknesses on the conduct of the operation, with the view to derive lessons from it. And having ascertained the lessons learnt this can then form the basis for the formulation or a review of a Standing Operating Procedure.

PM Najib had likened the evacuation plan as the exercise of Total Defence which I have a slight reservation to the use of such term. Whatever term that one uses, the evacuation plan was principally a joint effort of the various agencies of government, military, the private sector and a number of NGO’s. In simple military term, this is likened to a Joint Operation incorporating the utilization of all three services that operates under a single Joint Headquarters.

I am not privy to the model of command and control applied during the evacuation, but I suppose the operation was controlled by the National Security Council (MKN) and this is rightly so.

I believe the lessons derived are aplenty and as I have alluded above, let’s not rest on our laurel. Let’s look into the future and to predict if there will be another evacuation of a similar nature, if not much larger.

Having made a prediction, let’s us now devised a plan of contingency were it can then be tested and frequently exercised to attain a level of competency where all agencies involved are thoroughly familiar with.



wira said...

How many more Egypt type countries are there waiting to implode? Contagian, very probable but more challenging, hardly.
Egypt is unique and challenging for the simple reason it has the highest number of Malaysian students studying in their universities.
Can we say the same for other Arab countries? I guess not!
Will it happen to the UK or the US where thousands of our students reside? Unlikely.
So why the big fuss about Contigency Plans?
Malaysia does not even have a Defence Strategy!!(Ha.ha, caught you there)
But beneath all the ensuing political hulabalu, the success of the exercise does prove that we are actually good when it comes to such things.
To my mind, the experience serves as a beacon of hope as it clearly underscores our inherent self-belief that Malaysia Boleh, 'come hell or high water'.
The sad thing is, beneath this hunky-dory image that we portray to the outside world, we are actually quite 'kelam-kabut'. To cite a Malay proverb, Malaysia as a nation is 'indah khabar dari rupa'.
Imagine if we were not!!
We would probably be the 'Israel' of the Far East by now.
Some food for thought!!!

EAGLE said...

What else to say wira! Typical syiok sendiri!!!
The only defense strategy is how to continue serving even as a non-performer! But not only indah khabar dari rupa but also cakap tak serupa bikin!