Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Ideals of the Fajar Generation....

"The recent economy crisis, the recent financial crisis has again exploded the corruption and immorality of the Capitalist system and feel that human beings deserve something better than a system generated by greed and corruption. Now some of you have heard that when you're young, you're idealistic when you're old you're realistic. Now that is the kind of rubbish that is used by those who have lost their ideals and sold their ideals for self-interest. Each should not wither one's ideals or convictions. If anything, it should only consolidate and make it more resolute. If age has anything to do with it, it is only by way of expression and application of those ideals and convictions having the benefit of youthful experiences. And a life without convictions, without idealism is a mere meaningless existence. ...."

- Dr. Lim Hock Siew, speech at the launch of the book, "The Fajar Generation".[Link]

"I thought it would be useful to examine extracts from the alleged seditious article in class but I immediately hit a brick wall. There were no issues of Fajar in the collection of the National Library. The National University of Singapore Library (which inherited the collection of the University of Malaya) has an incomplete set (5 issues short of the total 62; lacking the first 2 issues, numbers 20 and 24 of Volume 1 and number 5 of Volume 2). However, the publication was still under lock and key. Access to it was restricted" - Lim Cheng Tju, A Personal Journey In Search Of Fajar

Seditious? Kept under lock and key? Restricted? Here's a picture of my desk at home this evening:


I own a collection of Fajar which was published in 1954-1961 i.e 50 years ago ...long before I was born. I wonder if I have the only other remaining copies of Fajar in Singapore.

Reading the Fajar gives an alternative view of the history of Singapore especially the key events such as the merger with Malaysia and the formation of Barisan Socialis. The ideals of the Fajar generation are equality, democracy, freedom and justice within a socialist framework. Operation Coldstore (1963) and the banning of Fajar , an organ of USC (University Socialist Club) mark an end to political openness and intensified the climate of fear. Here we are today in the most economically unequal society in the developed world, ruled by an authoritarian govt that over time took away our freedom of speech and the free press, and led by ministers who earn the highest salaries in the world. The ideals of the Fajar generation are still as relevant to our generation as they were 50 years ago.

"The Big Six – Mr Lim, Mr Fong Swee Suan, Mr Woodhull, Mr Dominic Puthucheary, Mr S.T. Bani and Mr Jamit Singh – had stated that while they supported the PAP in the coming by-election, they would not compromise on issues such as detention without trial and freedoms of press, speech, assembly and organisation.
Dr Poh argues that these statements amounted to a ‘request’, not an ‘ultimatum’. But Mr Lee, he says, saw this as a challenge to the PAP leadership and decided to make the split."

- Dr. Poh Soo Kai, Straits Times Interview "Dr. Poh:Why I parted company with PAP", 27 Dec 2009.

Extract from Fajar Editorial, Vol III, Issue 6, Aug 1961:

In 1961, there was still some hope for greater democracy in Singapore as seen by the writings of these university students. They could hardly imagine the events in the coming years that would turn their hopes for democracy into dispair.

40 comments:

Anonymous said...

I suggest you scan all copies of your collection and post them on your blog for all to read.

runroad said...

We call on the PAP not to resort to... We call on the PAP not to reduce workers to... abandon their professed democratic convictions as the price for staying in office...

Heh. Sad. If there's anything that cutting illustrates it is that appealing to PAP's better nature was as futile then as it is now, 50 years later. You'd get a more satisfactory response pissing into a hurricane.

A leopard cannot change its spots: PAP were shits then and they're still the shits now. That much is crystal clear. Only a stupid fool would play by Lee's rules and hope to prevail.

Anonymous said...

Even better, I remember Francis Seow's book 'To catch a TarTar' is available in National lIbrary and can only be browsed under approval under you-know-who and the search will yield this title. Now it is totally removed from piquing eyes in the library search system, people let alone can request for the book.

Evidently, Old fart is trying to erase the past trace and history of Singapore and doing cover-up for himself.

Anonymous said...

the book fajar generation is available at national library. i just got one.

Towkay said...

I have ideals also. My ideals are to help PAP import 500,000 foreign workers (ideally Africans) into Singapore, so that we can improve the lives of these 3rd world people.

Who knows, I might get some Nobel prize for it, hahaha!

Anonymous said...

Lucky, please post some of the more relevant portions of your Fajar collections. The ideals of Fajar are even more relevant to
the Singapore of today. The inequality after 50 years of PAP rules is even greater now than the early days. The elites are even more materialistic and discriminatory than the past. There is any urgent need to wake up the good human instincts in all of us. Cheers and may the New Year be an even better on for all.

Anonymous said...

'Even better, I remember Francis Seow's book 'To catch a TarTar' is available in National lIbrary and can only be browsed under approval under you-know-who and the search will yield this title. Now it is totally removed from piquing eyes in the library search system, people let alone can request for the book.'

I found the the Francis Seow book in a university library in democratic Malaysia! Naturally, being a cheapskate, I made a photocopy of this book; I tried to turn the loose pages of my photocopy into a pdf copy by scaning it all once but the photocopy machine complained file too big. any suggestion?

Anonymous said...

That's cool, Lucky.

In retrospect, Lee Kuan Yew just wants to make an imperial Lee empire out of Singapore. His ministers all Yes-men. He made you a slave for 2.5 years. And he's paid millions a year.

To change the system, we have to rock this fake 'Singapore boat' internally and externally of Singapore. And there are many ways to sink a Titanic.

engine room said...

it is best to put the stooges out at sea in much smaller boats and have a real skipper for once at the helm of the Titanic,

and of course blokes like Lucky should be part of the Titanic crew.

Anonymous said...

Capitalism is Colonialism in disguise!

Anonymous said...

i'm really impressed with lucky! thanks for sharing with us fajar ideals.

come on singaporean, we've got to vote out pap. they have been taking us for a ride long and cruel enough.

Anonymous said...

Mr Lucky

Aren't u going to reply to Mr Runroad?

50 years ago they tried the ancient equivalent of blogging.

50 years later ... u are still hoping to influence doing the same ...

Anonymous said...

I can confirm that "To Catch the Tartar" by Francis Seow is been removed from National Library search just recently about 1-3 months ago. Old fart is really desperate this time.

LuckySingaporean said...

Runroad & Anon 19:37,

50 years later, it is still the same old battle for equality, justice and freedom. So it says alot about how much political progress we have made.

So 50 yrs and now what is the diff? 50 yrs ago, our neighbors and every other asian country were ruled by tyrants, dictators, strongmen authoritarians. Singapore in spite of LKY's authoritarian rule was relatively more democratic than other asian countries. Now things have changed. Taiwan, S.Korea, Thailand, Indonesia, etc have progressed to become democratic countries. The world has moved on and we have made no progress.

It will be really tragic if 50 years from now Singaporeans are still yearning for basic human rights, freedom, democracy, justice and equality...WE MUST PROGRESS and there is no choice but to progress if we want to survive.

runroad said...

Dear Lucky,

That is exactly my point though I may not have expressed it as clearly as you did. Thanks to technology all of us now have an unprecedented helicopter view of the track record of half a century of the People's Action Party and the sight is not a pretty one. Citizens can no longer plead ignorance.

It will be truly tragic if given this knowledge we fail to act to stop the madness before their latest social engineering experiment on Singaporean lab rats becomes a fait accompli. LKY's Stop-At-Two/abort-sterilise dogma condemned our babies to death and put us in our present predicament. Now our entire Singaporean identity is under threat. No other population in the world would tolerate this.

I'm old enough to remember a kinder, gentler and more civilised Singapore. So I can guarantee you that I will not be around to enjoy the aftermath of the law of unexpected consequences that will surely kick in as a result of the FT flood a generation from now. It really won't affect me at all. However, it does truly break my heart to see the new mercenary, criminally callous Singapore being relentlessly created in the name of progress by a self-confessed barbarian.

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shirley ng said...

Dear Lucky,

Good day!!

I’m Shirley Ng from Universiti Tunku Abdul Rahman, so glad to hear that you own a collection of Fajar (1954-1961). Besides that, I’m doing a thesis about Dr. Poh Soo Kai, which needs some information from Fajar (1954-1961). Would you mind to give me a copy of your Fajar (1954-1961) collections?

I hope to hear you soon.

Regards,
Shirley Ng

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