Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Singapore. Gopalan Nair makes headlines again.

Ladies and Gentlemen,

I am not sure if Lee Kuan Yew's Singapore realizes this, but all this publicity for Gopalan Nair yesterday about his being disbarred from Singapore legal profession is actually doing him a mountain of good. Not the other way round.

In most other places, a lawyer being disbarred would not have made it to the newspapers, let alone headlines, since it is really not newsworthy. But in Singapore, it made headlines in their state controlled newspaper Straits Times which carried a color photo of myself. Several other state controlled news papers all carried the story prominently. (All Singapore media are state controlled, there is no independant press). Of course their intention was to give me a bad name as always, but really, is it achieving that purpose? I am not sure.

Since my entanglement with Lee Kuan Yew's Singapore in 2008 by my visit, which ended up a full six months with a 2 month jail portion, Gopalan Nair became a public figure in the island. My pictures were posted on several occasions over the 6 months while there, and Singaporeans knew me.

After my return to the US after being in Lee Kuan Yew's jail, I was again in the news there in Singapore, for defying their court order and for writing another blog critical of another of his judges, Judith Prakash which I did from the US.

Once again, some months ago, I was headline news again, when I deliberately wrote a factually untrue blog post about Lee Kuan Yew suffering a heart attack. There too Gopalan Nair was centre of attention among Singaporeans with newspapers splashing headlines across it. All TV and radio stations in the island reported on it. My action was even debated in Lee's Parliament. I did it only to prove that Singapore is so politically fragile that if Lee Kuan Yew were to die, the entire island will collapse, which was proved right.

And now this. Headline news about my disbarment in Singapore with my picture in the papers, with news of it also in all radio stations in all languages.

In a small crowded island like Singapore news naturally spreads island wide within minutes. So it is fair to say that the name Gopalan Nair or sometimes GN as some call it, is a household name.

Of course, Lee Kuan Yew's purpose of doing this is an attempt to discredit me and paint me as a criminal by thoroughly false or half truths. But I am not sure this is how Singaporeans are going to think of me.

Today across the island, Lee Kuan Yew and his government is disliked for their high handedness, nepotism and various other excesses of power. They know that their judges are all there to do Lee Kuan Yew's bidding and not a single person really believes that there is even a semblance of the rule of law.

In the case of Gopalan Nair, all he has alleged to have done is to criticize the judiciary. There is also the accusation that he shouted at policemen. Big deal. And for this he is disbarred for life? It is not a case of my committing murder or committing bank fraud. Unless he is insane, noone goes around criticizing judges for nothing.

So in this case, I don't believe that all this publicity is going to have the effect of Singaporeans believing Gopalan Nair as evil in any sense. It is more than likely that they will see this as another instance of Lee Kuan Yew and his government being particularly jittery of the effect his writings in Singapore Dissident may have on Singaporeans.

And furthermore, the good news is, it will have the effect of directing much more attention among Singaporeans to this blog Singapore Dissident, as those who may not have heard of it would look it up after hearing about Gopalan Nair in headline news.

On the whole, I would say, not a very smart move by Lee Kuan Yew and his PAP, this prosecution against Gopalan Nair. It advantages me more and not them. So a thank you, Lee Kuan Yew for all the trouble and expense.

Singapore Dissident will continue whether or not I am disbarred from practicing law in Lee Kuan Yew's Singapore.

Gopalan Nair
Attorney at Law
39737 Paseo Padre Parkway, Suite A1
Fremont, CA 94538, USA
Tel: 510 657 6107
Fax: 510 657 6914
Email: nair.gopalan@yahoo.com
Blog: http://singaporedissident.blogspot.com/

Your letters are welcome. We reserve the right to publish your letters. Please Email your letters to nair.gopalan@yahoo.com And if you like what I write, please tell your friends. You will be helping democracy by distributing this widely. This blog not only gives information, it dispels government propaganda put out by this dictatorial regime.

13 comments:

Anonymous said...

Singapore is not so clean, Mr Murdoch

Crippling poverty and an overpaid government mean Singapore is not the beacon of social perfection that Rupert Murdoch claims

Chee Soon Juan
guardian.co.uk, Tuesday 26 July 2011

http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/2011/jul/26/rupert-murdoch-wrong-singapore

Anonymous said...

mcboohoo

26 July 2011 11:12AM

We lived in Singapore for a few years, just been back there to see friends and gape open mouthed at THAT hotel on the bay. I still have a soft spot for the place, bloody lovely being an expat there, "One long drinks party interupted by holidays" as I used to describe it.

Civil society is nonexistent

This is true, Singaporeans don't seem to be interested in politics or any issues beyond making a crust at all, it's pretty depressing and really made us miss scruffy old Britain and the rest of Europe. Private Eye wouldnt last 5 minutes there before they had their front door kicked in.

Corruption? Well maybe not in the sense we understand it, Singapore is basically a big family business. Lee Kwan Yew isnt a politician, he's more of an Andrew Carnegie, or a John Pierpoint Morgan. He saw a great business opportunity in being a pro-Western, low tax oasis in the centre of SE Asia. Hats off, it worked.

Where they go next is up to them. I really hope they take the shackles off themselves, start actually taking an interest in the kind of country they want to be. Yes the streets are clean and everything works but if I were Singaporean I'd struggle to find much in the country to be really proud of. That sounds patronising but it's kind of the truth.

Anonymous said...

Not only Murdoch loves Singapore.
My Aussie neighbours love Singapore too. They love the fact that the ministers are paid a lot and it shows in the result, the pleasant crime-free living condition.

It is great having a live-in maid, esp on weekends when they are able to hop over to a regional country for bike hash, trekking or just simply to chill out. The maid take care of everything, she does not even take up the offer of a day off every month.

They are also impressed with how cheap the labour cost are, eg $20 to fix a tap vs $100 in Australia.

Also, Singaporeans work so late to serve the Aussies on the cheap, who are not even on expat perks.

Overall, Singapore really make them feel like colonial masters again.

The only trouble is that Singaporeans ask too many private details when filling up forms and reveal too much personal information without asking for their permission. They are still not used to being asked their Race.

Too bad they have to return to Australia soon. They will miss the efficiency and convenience of getting things done in Singapore.

Singapore has done an excellent job of portraying itself as a tropical business paradise, even if it is just a fa├žade to draw attention away from its dark side.

Anonymous said...

In an interview with China’s CCTV, Lee was asked about the ‘legacy’ he leaves behind for the PAP, having ‘retired’ from the Cabinet to which he boasted rather unashamedly:

“I took this country from a very low base in the Third World and in 20 to 40 years gradually transformed it into a First World country, and now it’s gone on to a different leadership and new problems crop up because people believe that what has been achieved is always secure. I don’t believe that is so.”

Notice how he has doubts his son's leadership.

Anonymous said...

An American became a poster boy for Singapore on-going fear mongering campaign.

INSIDE
While Singaporeans have accepted for too long that human rights do not really apply to us. There are OB markers limiting what we can say or do, if you join up the OB markers, they form a cage - like the cages we use for pet birds or monkeys. The trouble is, Singaporeans are in the cage or should I say more politically right - OB markers.

OUTSIDE
Mr Nair, your colour photo represent this OB marker. Thank goodness you are outside the OB marker, you are human and free, ...... if you have been following my thoughts & my logical conclusion.

CONCLUSION - CART BEFORE THE HORSE
What Singaporeans fail to ask is why the defendant is absent throughout all these court proceedings. Does he not have the right to defend himself.

Perhaps Singaporeans are realising that it is alright to have an end that justify the means.

Yes, I am one of those who write my aspired conclusions to a research paper before writing the contents to match the conclusions.

It is increasing popular.

FEED THE PETS
Finally, my last point. I wrote earlier about Singaporeans being caged in by OB Markers. I heard a bad news. From the LEE family comes their new favourite phrase "Cannot be helped". Caged pets are usually fed by the owners. But some owners are not feeding and taking care of their caged pets. Why? Cannot be helped!

Have a nice day, Nr Nair. You are freed.

Anonymous said...

Congrats Gopalan,

While the living puppets of the Singapore bench are still behind Lee Kuan Yew's bars, you have been debarred.

Can't help playing on the words. I need a sense of humour to cool me-self down when I see injustice.

If only I can apologise to you on behalf of my drugged countrymen because non of them stand up to speak for you. What a way to lose a brave Singapore lawyer. You are America's gain.

Anonymous said...

The UK Guardian
Alan Shadrake's book about the country's brutal judicial regime landed him with a six-week prison sentence there. What was the experience like?

Twice Shadrake was given the chance to publicly apologise before his trial and sentencing. He was also asked to promise not to impugn the integrity of Singapore's judiciary again. "I suddenly thought, what is this all about? I'm going to apologise and they'll let me go? Then I thought, I'm not going to apologise. They had fallen into their own trap. They had got me and they didn't know what to do. They had caused this global outcry. I was nobody and I'm nobody now but I've just become famous through their stupidity."

http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2011/jul/27/jail-singapore

Anonymous said...

Before he went into jail, Shadrake made a vow: "When I come out, I'm going to continue to be a thorn in the side of the Singapore authorities for as long as I live." He is proud of what he considers his best work in his 50-year career and has "no regrets".

Anonymous said...

... Malaysia, where his book has sold 10,000 copies – many to traders who have smuggled it into Singapore, where his book is not officially banned but is, mysteriously, unavailable in any shops.

"The Singapore government scored an own-goal by persecuting Alan.

His book has drawn the international spotlight to Singapore's use of the death penalty," said Lance Lattig, south-east Asia researcher at Amnesty International.

Anonymous said...

... Malaysia, where his book has sold 10,000 copies – many to traders who have smuggled it into Singapore, where his book is not officially banned but is, mysteriously, unavailable in any shops.

"The Singapore government scored an own-goal by persecuting Alan.

His book has drawn the international spotlight to Singapore's use of the death penalty," said Lance Lattig, south-east Asia researcher at Amnesty International.

Anonymous said...

Lee Kuan Yew loses, Shandrake wins

Shadrake is in touch with human rights activists and Singaporean dissidents who have been energised by his book.

He hopes that repression, injustice and the lack of separation between Executive power and the Judiciary in Singapore – criticisms that so inflamed the authorities – will come crumbling down just as surely as the Berlin Wall did as well.

"I've had tremendous support in Singapore. I'm not a hero but I'm treated like one."

Anonymous said...

Lee Kuan Yew says he fought to keep the communists from taking over.

But, today we have a million (ONE MILLION) Communists from China in Singapore.

What gives?

http://www.temasekreview.com/2011/07/27/nearly-one-million-china-nationals-living-in-singapore/

Anonymous said...

Out of curiousity,where did the paper get your picture?It looks aas if it has been edited