Surviving 38 years of the May 13 bloodshed
Yesterday, May 13, activist Dr Kua Kia Soong launched a significant book to give a different perspective to the May 13 incident.
The book, titled May 13: Declassified Documents on the Malaysian Riots of 1969, is based on newly declassified documents including foreign dispatches and confidential reports at the time, which are now made available in the Public Records Office in London after the 30-year secrecy rule over these documents had lapsed.
Kua, an ex-ISA detainee and now principal of New Era College, concluded his findings by arguing that the May 13 incident was a plot to oust then premier Tunku Abdul Rahman and not spontaneous clashes between Malay and Chinese as official history trying to paint it. Quote:
“The (official) history of May 13 is full of nonsense, it doesn’t reveal anything. It pins the blame on the opposition party which was not true, they were not the responsible party,” Kua told malaysiakini in a recent interview.
“My book shows the responsible party were those ascendent state capitalist class (in Umno), elements within that gave rise and implemented this plan. There was a plan based on the people who assembled at the (Selangor) menteri besar(Harun Idris)’s house. [...]
Kua maintained the May 13 incident was a coup d’etat against the Tunku by the then emergent Malay state capitalists - backed by the police and army - to seize control of the reign of power from the old aristocrats to implement the new Malay agenda. [...]
A secret document from the British cabinet office featured in the book showed that barely a week after the riots broke out, the Central Intelligence Agency had figured out what Tun Razak was planning - “to formalise Malay dominance, sideline the Chinese and shelve the Tunku”.
Interestingly, former head of the Special Branch Yuen Yuet Ling showed up at the book launching ceremony and address the audience during Q&A time and declared that the May 13 bloodshed has no connection to the Malaysan Communist Party.
Kua, however, strongly advocated the formation of a commission of inquiry to let the nation attain the truth over the tragedy.
“The inquiry is crucial for national reconciliation -- the elusive national unity we talk about, the elusive ethnic relation we want in this country but unless we have that inquiry, we will not get that reconciliation,” Kua said.
The book is priced RM20 per copy. Get it at Suaram, or from the bookshops next week.