Wednesday, March 26, 2014

MH370 - Where are 'our Arab friends'?

A friend in need is a friend indeed!

Di Mana Bantuan Negara Arab, Di Mana Kesatuan Ummah?

By Norman Fernandez

More than twenty countries are assisting Malaysia in the search and rescue operation for the missing Malaysia Airlines MH370. That includes "infidel countries" like Australia and United States who have sent aircrafts and ships to search for the missing aircraft.

But, we have yet to hear of any offer of assistance from the Arab countries. There is an eerie silence from all the Muslim Middle-East countries to help Malaysia in the spirit of the ummah.

Surely these countries have available to them planes and ships which can join in the search. But, so far there is hardly a whimper from them. (Only Iran a non Arab and Shiah country offered to help us)

Muslim or not, these Arab countries cannot be dependend or be relied upon especially in times of need. Anyway, this is not surprising.

Remember, when the tsunami struck Aceh on 26.12.2004 which culminated in more than a quarter million of the population losing their lives, the first to rush in with help was Malaysia as always and western countries.

Despite Aceh being called the Corridor of Mecca, the Arab countries for long period during and post tsunami were indifferent and ambivalent in providing help. If help came it was much later and after much criticism. Even then in comparison to the assistance given by the 'infidel' West to Muslim Aceh, the Arab countries contribution amounted to a mere tokenism.

Again, it was the same when on 30.09.2009 Padang in Indonesia was struck by a devastating earthquake which destroyed almost the whole of Padang. Despite the destruction and the loss of lives, once again it was Malaysia who as usual can be relied on and the infidel west coming to the aid of the Muslims.

The Arab countries as always acted more as bystanders and were unmoved by the suffering of their fellow Muslim brethren. To the Arabs, the people of Padang maybe Muslims but they not being Arabs do not extract the fellowship of the ummah. Thus, we did not see the Arabs countries rushing to aid the earthquake victims.

Yet, Malaysia bends backward for the Arabs and the Arab countries. We are their annointed spokesman and defenders. We carry their torch.. Malaysia is the spokesman on issues affecting the Arabs. See the Palestinian issue. The warring factions cannot even unite.

The Arab countries having vested interest gives support to one faction while alienating the other.Similarly, while Malaysia to score brownie points appeases Muslim countries by having no ties whatsoever with Israel and declaring Israel as a sworn enemy, many Arab countries in contrast have trade relationships and quiet relationships with Israel. Does one really believe Saudi Arabia and Israel do not have a cordial relationship? Dig deeper and you will be surprised. Really, should we bother to stand in unity with the Arabs when the Arabs take Malaysia as fools?

So, as the search for MH370 enters the second week, let us all remember who has come to Malaysia's aid and never let it be forgotten that the Arab countries stood by and watched.

In Malaysia's greatest time of need the spirit of the Ummah was forgotten.

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