Wednesday, 4 April 2012

The Deserter

 Inspiration : WO 2 Mohd Zain

Salam Skot,

Before I proceed let me explain to you the meaning of the word deserter, my own interpretation and its spiritual meaning that is. Although the bugler has sounded the last post on us military veterans and those within our peers however if your IQ is still intact, the easy way to go about searching the meaning for words is simply to type it through a search engine, copy and paste it in your content, like what I'm about to do. First go to google.. type the word deserter.. walla.. and there are 1000 and one hits and result including some with videos for that word. Nowadays that's how the young generation go about passing or getting excellent result in their examinations and acquired their credentials, conduct research or doing thesis for PhD etc. The art or skill is to be able to determine appropriately the right wording either for words, information, songs or even verses of the al Quran so to get the right or correct meaning to your texts. I did not take history during my Cambridge O Level examination however I remember that one of the questions was 'how Malacca was founded'. Some of those who slogged to memorise the answer eventually scored a good marks that contributed into their aggregates. With that they managed to go for further studies in higher institutions and eventually got their degrees, masters or perhaps pursuing for doctorate and they become self-satisfied or complacently successful in life. This is in comparison to those greenhorn and most mark time Skots who now feeling the pinch, living and surviving with just their meager pension fund. Nevertheless they still inherit the AF officers' lifestyle and laid back in surrounding bunkers around the posh green and putting their misery away. Those who burn the midnight candle then and to learn and merely sturdy how to answer correctly, 'how Malacca was founded' cherished a good life. Now punch the word 'how Malacca was founded' and see for yourself the extensive information as provided in the Wikipedia. Though the information provided are broad and extensive, I am more interested on an incident where a mouse deer or a sang kancil who gave a flying kick to a dog and the tree called Melaka where Malacca got its name upon Parameswara was leaning against it while watching the kung fu sang kancil action as in the history that we learn.

The same can also be said to those smart alec in mathematics. They learn by hard all the principles and theorem but rarely or seldom make used of the algebra they scored in mathematics exam and to apply it in real life other than doing a simple arithmetic to sum up their over due monthly bills. I scored a very big number of grade in my Maths exam result and during when I was with 20 Transport Coy KPD, beside being combatant all the while during the mid 70's, I was also entrusted to manage the unit's PRI account for a sheer reason because they was no other sang kancil that looks capable in that unit. I was then sent for a short course in Regimental Funds. It is actually a simple course of book keeping and at the end of the day, to produce a balance sheet. However during the final exam shockingly everybody was asked to surrender their calculators. Whatever the rational of it, is absurd and to manually adding up, subtracting and calculating the figures with all the intricate decimal points with numerous entries in a given short time is too cumbersome and the staff was not serious in collecting the calculators as the onus of doing so lies with the officers. The result that was sent later to the unit saw a couple of sang kancils scored A but I was not surprise for they managed to complete the balance sheet with the aid of the calculator they hide. For being honest, I scored the familiar grade alphabet. Well again, that's what the army is all about beside two other things I learn : do not volunteer and don't up an open pair in a poker game. Can you clear your conscious that you pass your promotion exams without any kind of assistance in possessing unethically the DS solution on any papers ? It's disgusting on some paper chase story I heard among Skots.

So lets now describe the word deserter by the old fashioned way without the aid of the www and to just rely totally on our once powerful mind. The mind which consist of the grey matters in the brain that needs exercise so not to be RTD or just R meaning retired, added at the end of your name that can also be taken to mean a service no longer required. A lieutenant colonel (R) and a very close buddy of mine when we were in KPD asked me if I'm interested to join the Retired Armed Forces Officers' Club or RAFOC. I told him politely that I may not be eligible as I have never retired but I've resigned and in the RAFOC's website you can see an heroic picture of a person that is just a lieutenant like me i.e Lt Adnan Saidi who gallantly fought to defend Bukit Chandu in Singapore against the invading Japanese forces. Compared to the under strength Royal Malay Regiment and without the support of their British master, the mighty Japanese army, banzai and practically sang their way and eventually occupied Malaya. You may also like to know how Singapore or formerly Temasik was founded through the www as our young generation who now has no interest or whatsoever and oblivious of our nation history thus eventually has forgotten their roots and become a perfect strangers to a person noted for feats of courage like Lt Adnan Saidi that stubbornly stood in vane defending it. None of the words that describe retreat, abandonment, betrayal, forsaking, dereliction, relinquishment or deserted can be said of his heroic act which took his life and his body used as a bayonet or pooky drill by the Japanese. But then what use when one is far and dead be remembered but while during his heyday and lifetime is ignored as like those unsung heroes that are still alive and they should not necessarily be just soldiers but others who have contributed towards the independent of this country and the development of it.

Deserter rightfully should come from the word desert. I am telling my version of the word deserter as I want an originality of my own rather than repeating its source that has been established so not to be taken as plagiarism, meaning the unauthorised use or close imitation of the language and thoughts of another author and the representation of them as one's own original work. The desert is a region so arid because of little rainfall that it supports only sparse and widely spaced vegetation or no vegetation at all. The only human that ever survive in a desert are those that have long adapted to it and do not link to modern civilisation like the bushmen, Tuareg and the Bedouins. Far from generous the land provide the livelihood only to those who knows it well. The al Quran describes the wandering or the desert Arabs as compared to the believers as: 'The Arabs of the desert are the worst in Unbelief and hypocrisy, and most fitted to be in ignorance of the command which God hath sent down to His Apostle: But God is All-knowing, All-Wise. Some of the desert Arabs look upon their payments (zakat or tithe) as a fine, and watch for disasters for you: on them be the disaster of evil: for God is He That heareth and knoweth (all things)'. at Taubah ayat 97 and 98. Those who have performed the umrah or the Haj traveled and saw over 400 Km of open desert between Mekah and Madinah. The early history of Islam right from Nabi Ibrahim a.s to Nabi Mohamad PBUH witnessed the mankind history of transgression, races and tribal cruelty and barbarous act of life against the principles of the religion in the harshness and treacherous of the desert. Analogies and parables mentioned in the holy book on the Thamud, Aad. Aikah, Saba, Sadom etc are those desert dwellers that have distort or go against Allah Will and the consequences of which will be punished in hell.

The al Quran reveals : 'And (We destroyed) Qarun and Pharaoh and Haman. And Moses had already come to them with clear evidences, and they were arrogant in the land, but they were not outrunners (of Our punishment). So each We seized for his sin; and among them were those upon whom We sent a storm of stones, and among them were those who were seized by the blast (from the sky), and among them were those whom We caused the earth to swallow, and among them were those whom We drowned. And Allah would not have wronged them, but it was they who were wronging themselves'. Al Ankabut ayat 39 and 40. Unlike all other messengers of God that were sent specifically to give guidance and counsel to their own people, Nabi Mohamad PBUH was sent for the rahmat or mercy to the worlds which include the right and quality of being just or fair to all other living thing. 'And We have not sent you, (O Muhammad), except as a mercy to the worlds'. al Anbiya ayat 107. The Jews and Christians are the people given the scripture and so called Bani or Children of Israel are descenders of Nabi Yaakob a.s who once called himself 'soldier of Israel'. The Bani Israel though been blessed and as the chosen one through thousand of years and generation with guidance from their prophets ultimately choose to deviate and strayed away from the right path as Allah reminded : 'O Children of Israel, remember My favor which I have bestowed upon you and fulfill My covenant (upon you) that I will fulfill your covenant (from Me), and be afraid of (only) Me'. 2:40. The continuous verses after that describes the favors and the scripture and criterion given to nabi Musa a.s that perhaps would be guided by them.

If we care to sturdy the holy Quran, it reflects more towards giving guidance in the form of reminders in its various definition and not in the sense so much of giving merely advice. ' So remind, if the reminder should benefit' 87:9. There is however an ayat where the word advice come into being during an incident after nabi Musa gave a Mike Tyson's like left hook that killed a Qibti, the people of Pharaoh. Beside prophets there are others that Allah descends a wahyu or a revelation in the form of inspiration and this include to Mariam, to ummi or Musa's mother and also to bees 16: 68 among others. 'And We inspired to the mother of Moses, "Suckle him; but when you fear for him, cast him into the river and do not fear and do not grieve. Indeed, We will return him to you and will make him (one) of the messengers. And the family of Pharaoh picked him up (out of the river) so that he would become to them an enemy and a (cause of) grief. Indeed, Pharaoh and Haman and their soldiers were deliberate sinners''. al Qasas ayat 8 and 9. So Nabi Musa a.s live comfortably in the palace as compared to the slaved children of Israel until, 'And a man came from the farthest end of the city, running. He said, 'O Moses, indeed the eminent ones are conferring over you (intending) to kill you, so leave (the city); indeed, I am to you of the sincere advisors' 28:20. Nabi Musa a.s took that advice and 'So he left it, fearful and anticipating (apprehension). He said, "My Lord, save me from the wrongdoing people' 28:21. Sadaqallah hul 'azim and so let me now begin the story of the deserter. The characteristics of changes or transformation from ignorance toward faith and taqwa through guidance and wisdom and the rest of my perception will be in this context.

'But if they intend to deceive you - then sufficient for you is Allah . It is He who supported you with His help and with the believers. And brought together their hearts. If you had spent all that is in the earth, you could not have brought their hearts together; but Allah brought them together. Indeed, He is Exalted in Might and Wise'. al Anfal ayat 62 and 63. The Aus and Khazraj each took alliance with the Jews in Madinah and wage wars between one another for generations and yet these two tribes with the grace of Allah be united as Ansar an Islamic term that literally mean helpers that helped nabi Muhammad SAW and the Muhajirin on the arrival to the city after the hijrah or migration to Madinah. Originally the Muhajirin, comprises of the Quraish Arab distorts and deviates from the religion and for generations practices paganism and the worship of deities and idols as their gods. 'That you may warn a people whose forefathers were not warned, so they are unaware'. 36:6. Unlike the children of Israel including nabi Isa a.s that Allah descends upon them prophets after prophets, the Arabs who descended from nabi Ismail a.s, the other son of nabi Ibrahim a.s has no history of prophets descended upon them as such they were ignorance. Though nabi Mohamad SAW is promised even with the sun and the moon however after 13 years of hardship and opposition from the Quraish leaders he migrated or hijrah to Madinah with his companion Saidina Abu Bakar r.a and later followed by the rest of the deserters. A soldier who abandons their duty is said to be a deserter. The Muhajirin are not soldiers but people who much depend on the desert as their livelihood. The life and culture that was built and make Mekah a center of activities that they fled and seek faith of the divine religion of Islam.

Nabi Allah Ibrahim a.s is considered the earliest and a young deserter. 'Abraham was neither a Jew nor a Christian, but he was one inclining toward truth, a Muslim (submitting to Allah). And he was not of the polytheists' 3:67. During adolescence as a youth he destroyed the idols worshiped by his people. 'They said, "We heard a young man mention them (about doing bad to their idols) who is called Abraham". 21:60. He was dealt with and to be punished into the fire which 'Allah said, "O fire, be coolness and safety upon Abraham" 21:69. He deserted his father an Ingénieur who built the idols and his people and later confronted with Namrud of the Canaans who is the descendant of nabi Nuh a.s and argued with Abraham about his Lord (merely) because Allah had given him kingship. The story is narrated in surah al Baqarah ayat 258. It is nabi Ibrahim a.s and his son nabi Ismail a.s that built the Kaabah and Allah gave blessing to his family and Mekah a prosperous city. 'And We delivered him and Lot to the land which We had blessed for the worlds' 21:71. Nabi Lot or Lut deserted his LGBT people during the early dawn. 'And to Lot We gave judgment and knowledge, and We saved him from the city that was committing wicked deeds. Indeed, they were a people of evil, defiantly disobedient. The angels said, "O Lot, indeed we are messengers of your Lord; (therefore), they will never reach you. So set out with your family during a portion of the night and let not any among you look back - except your wife; indeed, she will be struck by that which strikes them. Indeed, their appointment is (for) the morning. Is not the morning near?". So when Our command came, We made the highest part (of the city) its lowest and rained upon them stones of layered hard clay, (which were) Surah Hud ayat 74, 81 and 82.

Another group of young men who were neither nabi nor rasul deserted and hide themselves in a cave  and was 'put to sleep' with God's Will for around 300 years! 'It is We who relate to you, (O Muhammad), their story in truth. Indeed, they were youths who believed in their Lord, and We increased them in guidance.' 18:13. These are the al Kahfi as relates in the al Quran under the surah or chapter of the same name. So if you approach to understand the holy book in that manner then we can simply say that one need to sacrifice and go through the trial and tribulations to transform from mere complacent to self actualization in whatever sense. 'Do the people think that they will be left to say, "We believe" and they will not be tried? But We have certainly tried those before them, and Allah will surely make evident those who are truthful, and He will surely make evident the liars. Or do those who do evil deeds think they can outrun Us? Evil is what they judge. Whoever should hope for the meeting with Allah - indeed, the term decreed by Allah is coming. And He is the Hearing, the Knowing'. Surah al Ankabut ayat 2-5. So lo and behold to those who have been struck by idleness and doing nothing that you have task to do and that Allah SWT has firman, 'And I did not create the jinn and mankind except to worship Me' 51:56. Worship meaning to include doing the amal and ibadah or deeds to yourself, family, the beloved nation and Islam as the religion. If repentance be the characteristics of a deserter then be known that the messenger Mohamad SAW who is assured heaven with the Will and Permission of Allah, as narrated in a hadith mentioned the istifar 70 times a day.

'There came from the farthest end of the city a man, running. He said, "O my people, follow the messengers. Follow those who do not ask of you (any) payment, and they are (rightly) guided'. Yaasin ayat 20 and 21. The purest spiritual values of a deserter is to forbid himself to accept any kind of worldly returns of their deeds especially in encouraging people towards taqwa or fear, iman or as believers and other benefits. 'Those are the ones whom Allah has guided, so from their guidance take an example. Say, "I ask of you for this message no payment. It is not but a reminder for the worlds.' al An'aam ayat 90. 'And do not exchange the covenant of Allah for a small price. Indeed, what is with Allah is best for you, if only you could know'. An Nahl ayat 95. So from now on when you congregate in a mosque to attend and hear a sermon or listening on talks and lectures you can most certainly distinguish between the 'for the sake of Allah' deserter against those merchant of religion that goes around with motive of spreading hatred and disunity among Muslim. But why is the disunity obviously apparent when we are supposed to be brothers? 'The believers are but brothers, so make settlement between your brothers. And fear Allah that you may receive mercy' 49:10. 'Hold fast to the rope of Allah all together, and do not separate. Remember Allah's blessing to you when you were enemies and He joined your hearts together so that you became brothers by His blessing. You were on the very brink of a pit of the Fire and He rescued you from it. In this way Allah makes His Signs clear to you, so that hopefully you will be guided'. Surah al ‘Imran ayat 103

We are indeed lost and ignorant until we turn ourself to be a deserter as defined and having quoted all those above, you shouldn't have the problem to understand that statement however allow me to convey the real purpose and intention of this message. I have been a deserter many times over and the recent being is to defy those who called themselves One Mohicans. As in the film : the deserter, posted earlier on under the subject: Jejak Kasih, I was call upon for specific action by a Lieutenant General, an ex Director of Military Intelligence who inclined to agree on the my suggestion and approach to address the pay anomaly that no one seems fully competent to guide and direct the course of action. I must say that this is in no way to rivals the Mohicans but strictly to respond to the plight of those affected : the fade away 'old soldiers' as in the barrack ballad, their widows and children. So I wrote to the Jabatan Perkhidmatan Awam outlining the fact and highlighted the justifications for their perusals. The crux of the matter is eventually to draw the sympathy and sought for positive action by the political masters.

This is in view of the effort as seen of the government's kind action towards the need and sensitivity of the rakyat on the realisation of the national budget, the immediate allocations and approval of projects during the Prime Minister's visit and walk around,  the recent pay hike of the civil servant's SSM in lieu of the SPBA and the multi billions RM of BR1M to mention a few. In comparison, our plight should not be seen much of a burden but only a token of those that the government has granted and approved. After all are we not warriors that have once contributed to the well being of the nation? Those young all rounders who stood above others that opted and risk their life to serve the nation rather than pursuing other professions and technocrats. Most of those affected were graduated from the Royal Military College and were commissioned and conferred the watikah by the then DYMM SPB Yang DiPertuan Agong, Sultan Abdul Halim Mu'adzam Shah who  now ascending the throne again as His Majesty the King and the Prime Minister then was Tun Abdul Razak and is no stranger to Dato Seri Mohd Najib.

It is in this spirit and context that I call upon those to be with me as so called the deserter and seek your patient towards my lone expedition as I don't ask of your assistant as yet and will  get you posted on any developments.

'If Allah should aid you, no one can overcome you; but if He should forsake you, who is there that can aid you after Him? And upon Allah let the believers rely'. Surah Ali Imran ayat 160. Sadaqallahul 'Azim.

Wassalam / Mit freundlichen Gruessen / Best regards / 亲切问候,


Camels of the desert

The mentor and a Dutch friend. Both are son of or Bani Adam.

The protégé : Lt Gen Salleh (R) Ex-DMI and Lt Col Raja Abdullah (R) Arty.

Of a lesser God,  Skot Taib Ibrahim who lost his right leg in a booby trap
incident during Ops Selamat Sawadee in 1979.

The pilot and his ATC, Lt Col Abdul Rahman (R) left and Lt Kol Basah (R) right
who now complaining of 'feeling the pinch' since retired.

The faded Watikah

A typical Indonesian deserter

Chatting with an 'Old Soldier' Dato' Col Abdul Rahman 'rimau'



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