Ladies and Gentlemen,
On May 12, 13, and 14, 2008 Lee Kuan Yew and his son will embark yet again on their favorite practice to silence political dissent. On these dates, in the High Court, Dr. Chee and Chee Siok Chin will be told by Lee’s judge chosen for the dirty work; as to how many hundreds of thousand of dollars, they will have to pay the Lees in damages for defaming their character.
If any foreigner unaccustomed to the unique Singapore legal system were to ask why I am able to predict with so much confidence as to the amount of damages; they should be told that one thing is certain in Singapore. If the Lee family were ever to sue anyone; firstly, they are bound to win and secondly, the damages awarded will be in the tune of at least hundreds of thousands of dollars; no less. This much I guarantee.
But my question is this. Is all this punishment being meted out to his nemesis Dr. Chee producing the desired result? Since Lee's intention of using the courts to sue Dr. Chee is to silence him, is he in fact being silenced? Unfortunately for Lee Kuan Yew, the answer to this question so far has been in the negative. Dr. Chee is plain and simply refusing to be silenced. Not only that, with each defamation action defeat, his criticism of Lee, instead of mellowing and moderating, becomes instead more robust and even more critical.
Not just these politically motivated lawsuits before his complaint judges but every attempt at harassment by the Lees fails to silence Dr. Chee and company. You will recall in the past any attempt at public protest was stopped immediately, the protestors arrested, hauled before Lee’s courts and promptly punished. Now on the other hand the tables have turned. At the Tak Boleh Tahan protest on May 1, 2008, there were no less than 15 protestors (a revision from the earlier 10 that I had mentioned). Although in blatant violation of the public protest law requiring a permit for 5 or more protestors, not a single policeman was anywhere in sight, let alone any arrests.
Immediately after that, 2 days later, 7 protestors protested outside the SPH Building demanding more press freedom, holding a large banner to that effect. Again, surprisingly, not a single policeman or an arrest.
Dr. Chee had undergone a trial in the Subordinate Courts, Judge Jasvinder Kaur presided, for making a political speech without a permit. Although the trial was over a long time ago, the Judge has until today failed to deliver a verdict! Has she been advised by Lee Kuan Yew not to impose any sentence since it is clear that Dr. Chee will not pay the fine and go to jail and this defiance, yet again, will turn out to be an embarrassment?
We all know the vile character of common bullies. If you are afraid, they will bully you. If you stand up to them, they usually run away. Deep down they are in fact cowards.
Lee Kuan Yew shows the classic character of a common street bully. In the past in Singapore, his dirty tactics had always worked well for him. Each time he sued someone, the victim promptly apologized, paid up and was permanently silenced and removed from politics. You could say that his dirty tricks always paid off in the past. But not this time. Not with Dr. Chee and company.
Lee has crossed the path of someone with the tenacity and determination he did not expect. Dr. Chee is refusing to do what was expected of him, which is, once sued, to promptly roll over, apologize and prostrate at Lee's feet. With Dr. Chee not willing to do that but instead fight back with all his strength, Lee Kuan Yew has finally met his match. And having met his match, he does what every common street bully does. He runs away. As can be seen by his unusual inaction in the face of Dr. Chee and his street protestors blatantly violating his unjust laws.
So my message to Dr. Chee and Siok Chin is this. Singaporeans who understand these dirty tricks are clearly with you. You have their support. This is the time to ratchet up the resistance. This is the time to repeatedly show Lee that his illegal laws will not be respected.
I hope Dr. Chee will arrange for repeated protests from now until and through the dates of May 12, 13 and 14 2008 outside the High Court with placards reading "We want justice". With flyers distribution at every street corner everyday.
With the Internet used to full extent to increase awareness of the SDP activities. In other words, SDP pubic activism should be a non stop daily occurrence, challenging the Singapore Police to take action if they dare. SDP public activism should be before our faces everyday on the ground and displayed live on the Internet, daily. Without let up. Non stop defiance.
It is my reckoning that the police have given up on Dr. Chee and the SDP. Finally Dr. Chee and company have shown that truth is mightier than repression.
Dr. Chee should cast off now, to take advantage of the tide and the gentle wind comfortably blowing from starboard. Steady she goes! A tot of rum for helmsman!
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