Friday, May 4, 2018

The Conundrum of Operation Coldstore

Actually I have stopped blogging since last year. Lately I have been intrigued by the persistent appeals of interested political observers to give my view on the controversial Operation Coldstore. I will make this my swan song.

I will try to give an objective view on Operation Coldstore without giving offence to any party be it the powers-that-be or the opposition. The bombastic submission on Operation Coldstore by the authentic reputed Oxford Historian Dr. Thum Ping Tjin  to the Select Committee on deliberate falsehoods has created an unprecedented uproar to the members of the Select Committee as well as the public .Dr. Thum's submission seems to lack objectivity by presenting only one side of the picture without the opportunity of having the insight of the deliberations and discussions of the Internal Security Council (ISC) comprising Malaysian and British representatives which gave the approval to PM Lee Kuan Yew to proceed with Operation Coldstore. What the ISC discussed was top secret and not privy to the public. So it remained a secret how Lee Kuan Yew had been able to convince the ISC with his eloquence to give him the approval. Members of the ISC were not guillible people who could be easily persuaded.

That Operation Coldstore was  mounted against the leaders of the Communist United Front ostensibly to pre-empt them from seizing power was never in doubt but that it had also helped Lee Kuan Yew in consolidating his position against his political opponents cannot be dismissed as a fact. Some of those detained can be described dyed-in-the-wool subversives but it cannot be denied that some may be less implicated.

The fact that Dr. Thum Ping Tjin is an authentic reputed Oxford Historian  can  never be detracted by any amount of denigration by any party though there was no lack of such attempts as seen in his six-hour questioning in the Select Committee. The Operation Coldstore controversy will go on indefintely because there can never be a definitive conclusion to it.