Is the Lee Kuan Yew = Nelson Mandela quote sinister or stupid?

Posted on 18 January 2011

Maybe both, because there is something really sinister and stupid about Nelson Mandela that I bet you didn’t know about.

By Belmont Lay

So if Lee Kuan Yew = Nelson Mandela, then Lee Kuan Yew should get a Nobel Peace Prize too. Picture: Belmont Lay

ALL IT takes these days is a quote blistering with fawning adoration for Lee Kuan Yew and everyone inside the Internet is riled – again.

“Lee Kuan Yew is the equivalent of Nelson Mandela to Singaporeans”, said Cheo Ming Shen, a 27-year-old co-founder of Internet start-up Netccentric, who was later exposed as YPAP Chairman of Toa Payoh East by netizens.

Cheo’s comment appeared in The Sunday Times (Jan. 16) and was about his admiration for Minister Mentor Lee who has a new book coming out that is in need of some flogging.

And netizens are miffed because some felt Cheo should have revealed his political affiliations. Others felt that Mandela was not in the same league as Lee.

While others are blaming the reporter, Elgin Toh, for not making Cheo’s YPAP affiliation clearer.

And I think all of these is a fuss over nothing, because obviously everyone is mistaken about who Mandela really is.

Especially so, when you find out about the kind of lunacy he actually got up to in his heyday and any form of comparison that is supposed to evoke admiration turns to crap.

Because if you thought Mandela is a saint who also happened to have been awarded a Nobel Peace Prize, you just bought one of the best stories the media ever sold.

So, besides acknowledging that Mandela is the world’s second-longest imprisoned person in the universe after Chia Thye Poh, what else do you know about him?

He ended apartheid? Ok, fair enough. I’ll give that to him.

Ok, yes, Mandela has become a bastion of democracy and symbol of hope for oppressed people everywhere.

And then what else?

Ask yourself this and be brutally honest: Do you even remotely know why Mandela went to jail in the first place?

Hint: In the early 1960s, as a communist, Mandela pushed the African National Congress (ANC) into armed conflict.

More hints: He and his co-conspirators from ANC and the South African Communist Party were caught with a stash of 48,000 Soviet-made mines and 210,000 hand grenades.

Mandela advocated terrorism and he has a jaundiced view of the world that is coloured by nothing but pronounced racial politics.

So, no, he wasn’t incarcerated for his political views. Mandela was imprisoned for 23 acts of sabotage and for conspiring to overthrow the government through armed conflict.

And you know what was his pet name? He was known as the Black Pimpernel.

Why? Because Mandela advocated terrorism and he has a jaundiced view of the world that is coloured by nothing but pronounced racial politics.

In as late as 2002, when giving his views about his opposition to the Iraq invasion, his far-out radical views about race were nothing but loud and clear when he explained why the US and Britain defied the United Nations and went ahead with the war.

Mandela said: “When there were white (UN) secretary generals you didn’t find this question of the United States and Britain going out of the United Nations. But now that you’ve had black secretary generals like Boutros Boutros Ghali, like Kofi Annan, they do not respect the United Nations. They have contempt for it…”

What Mandela essentially said was: White leaders are a threat to peace. More so, when the UN had a black leader.

Does that sound racist or what?

And guess what? He was deeply concerned for the plight of one of the Lockerbie bombers and has expressed support for Libyan’s Gadaffi and Cuba’s Castro

Saddam Hussein was also his friend.

He even singled out Cuba for its human rights and liberty. (What? Cuba? Human rights? Liberty?)

Not to mention, he shared a stage with three Puerto Rican terrorists who had shot and wounded five US congressmen in 1954. Mandela said he supported anyone who was fighting for self-determination.

And when did he make these views? In the 1970s? No… He made them during the 1990s.

Plus, his second wife, Winnie Mandela, was a self-confessed advocate of terrorism and violence and was even accused of murder.

In 1986, she told a Soviet Union communist party newspaper that anyone who opposed her would be “necklaced”.

You know what that is? It means being burned alive with hands and feet tied with a burning rubber tire sauced in petrol thrown around the neck of anyone who opposed her.

On top of all that, Winnie was a convicted fraudster and thief with a penchant for Pirelli necklaces.

So what does all these tell me?

Here’s the point of this missive: Cheo knows nothing about Mandela. Toh is just as clueless. The rest of the people inside the Internet getting riled should just stop it because they only know half the story most of the time.

The end.

This post was written by:

- who has written 230 posts on New Nation.


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  • http://kirstenhan.me kirsten

    “Mandela said: “When there were white (UN) secretary generals you didn’t find this question of the United States and Britain going out of the United Nations. But now that you’ve had black secretary generals like Boutros Boutros Ghali, like Kofi Annan, they do not respect the United Nations. They have contempt for it…”

    What Mandela essentially said was: White leaders are a threat to peace. More so, when the UN had a black leader.”

    I don’t think that’s what he “essentially said” at all. You don’t seem to be getting the point of it.

    It is not about white leaders being a threat to peace when the UN has a black leader. That makes no sense.

    • Belmont Lay

      I’m sorry, but is your pregnant pause gonna take very long? Because it is not helping me make any sense of it either.

  • Dannon

    Hey good job Belmont. Any place I can read up more on the former UN chief?

    • Belmont Lay

      Mmm I actually just went to Wikipedia and press ctrl c and then ctrl v…

      But do look at the Wiki page for convenience first. It takes you to pieces by The New Statesman, for example, which covers the blood diamond issue and Mandela’s take on it.

  • Charlie

    Mr Cheo even went on Twitter to argue against a fellow netizen!

    http://www.temasekreview.com/2011/01/18/ypap-leader-engaging-in-vulgar-twitter-war-with-netizen/

  • Icarus

    What’s wrong with voicing out support for self-determination? Does that mean Mandela is wrong supporting rebels in Tibet, Kosovo and Darfur, even if it’s not to the point of advocating a violent overthrow of government?

    You may want to know that Mandela developed his views on self-determination at the same time when nearly all of Africa’s leaders prepared for decolonialisation in the 1950s and 1960s. I have no idea how you came to the conclusion that he developed these ideas in the 1990s.

    Certainly, his comment about the UN riles some feathers. He was brash and told it like it was, but certainly i can’t say it borders on being racist.

    • Belmont Lay

      Icarus said: “I have no idea how you came to the conclusion that he developed these ideas in the 1990s.”

      No, I didn’t come to that conclusion. I said, and you can read it again in the article above, “And when did he make these views?”

      Those views Mandela held, about Cuba in particular, were all made in the 1990s, a long time removed from the apartheid era.

      And if you bothered to google it, these are all public information consolidated in Wikipedia and tonnes of other websites.

      You are indeed Icarus. Ignorant and not very bright.

      • Icarus

        @ Belmont

        Obviously i am not referring to Mandela’s ideas on Cuba in the 1990s. And whether he did so is kinda irrespective to my point on the self determination question: are you sure he made these particular views on self determination in the 1990s?

        As i have already said Nelson Mandela closely followed the ideas of these 1950s/60s African/Asian leaders fighting for self-determination from Britain, France etc. If you don’t know your history then perhaps you should start reading up a bit more about Africa lest you look like the ignorant fella.

        And then back to the Cuba question. Everyone knows Nelson Mandela was pretty red. And being pretty red he had often expressed support for socialist regimes abroad, perhaps taking a different view on how Cuba has achieved “Human Rights”. So what’s this about developing sudden views on socialism and human rights in the 1990s? Obviously Nelson Mandela is no saint, but he’s certainly not a completely bad man either.

        @ Shihan

        Ok, so he had his violent revolutionary days and made some mistakes. And so did Sukarno, the founding fathers of America etc. Mind you, those were the actions fashioned in the days when there was really limited avenues for marginalized black Africans to politically express themselves through peaceful means. Who are we to bash Mandela for his actions in the past?

  • http://newnation.sg Shihan

    “He and his co-conspirators from ANC and the South African Communist Party were caught with a stash of 48,000 Soviet-made mines and 210,000 hand grenades”

    weapons speak for themselves? Funny how we bash LKY for incarcerating people during the Marxist Conspiracy or even during Operation Cold Store, but we’re so sympathetic towards a man who arguably had more violent days.

  • lelaopeh

    @Dannon Sure, you can try http://www.google.com

  • M

    @Belmont

    I think it’s only fair to consider with an open mind the feedback and critique readers and fellow writers give you, especially when your article is one that is so charged.

    After all, even normally, it’s only natural that not everyone will share the same worldviews, subscribe to the same ideologies and interpret events and issues the in a manner that can be universally applied.

    When comments to your article are fielded, there is no need to be insubordinate or combative in your responses. Critique doesn’t necessarily equate to criticism and neither does it imply disregard for the ideas you have presented.

    To be so belligerent towards those who have disagreed with some of your arguments and not engaging them with the respect they deserve can have an adverse effect on your personal reputation and that of the platform upon which your articles appear.

    Also, your approach quells what could potentially turn into amicable and honest discussions on the issues at hand.

    I think the way you treated Kirsten and Icarus was hurtful and dismissive. They meant you no harm and would’ve been happy to debate the points raised in an objective, non-confrontational manner.

    Perhaps you will seek to adopt a less antagonistic attitude when dealing with your readers and fellow writers henceforth?

  • M

    In short, it would be wise to be more inclusive and take the opportunity to pick the brains of readers/fellow writers that contribute to your article by means of commenting constructively.

    • Belmont Lay

      That’s true… I am combative. I shouldn’t expect other people to offer their views when antagonised. But as you can tell, I concede a point when I’m non-combative.

      Here’s an olive branch for Kirsten and here’s two for Icarus.

  • terence

    I think M has a point. Let’s chill and have a civil discussion!

  • James

    “He ended apartheid? Ok, fair enough. I’ll give that to him.”

    Ending apartheid peacefully was no walk in the park.

    I suggest you read John Carlin’s “Playing the Enemy: Nelson Mandela and the Game That Changed a Nation”.

  • pplz

    ZOMG!! THERE ARE PEOPLES INSIDE DA INTERNETS!! WE MUST FREE THEM!!

  • Heng Chao

    Hi Belmont. Just a piece of advice. Learn to have a bit of humility. Doesn’t make you look good out here.

    • Sita Saniva

      Great article Belmont! Some people are too uptight for the internet.

  • Lay Lady Lay

    “The rest of the people inside the Internet…”

    LOL! How did this get past the editors???

  • Lay Lady Lay

    “… Minister Mentor who has a new book coming out that is in need of some flogging.”

    LOL!! Editors sleeping again.

  • Lay Lady Lay

    “Others felt that Mandela is not in the same league as Lee.”

    I think it’s the other way round, dude, if you’ve been following what is being said on the Net. Tsk tsk tsk.

    Editors please do your job lar. This article is terrible.

  • Lay Lady Lay

    “… a quote blistering with fawning adoration…”

    I almost fell off my chair when I read this – and in the first paragraph too! I think the whole lot at New Nation (editors included) need a crash course in writing, in lieu of an actual course.

    Tsk tsk tsk.

  • Lay Lady Lay

    My last contribution.

    Words like “crap” should not be used in any article which wants to be taken seriously. That goes for the website too.

    The editors, more than the writer (in my opinion) should take the blame for this piece of poor writing. The writer obviously is trying to bite off more than he can chew and the editors have allowed him to massage his own ego by doing so. I will spare you and readers the pain of having more “disasters” pointed out to you, for sure there are several more such disasters in the above piece of what I can only call pseudo-writing.

    Belmont, one piece of advice: Don’t be such a prick. Take the criticism and advice in good spirit. Keep this and the other articles you have written. 10 years from now, when you have become a better writer, read them again.

    I assure you that you will be cringeing.

  • terence

    hello lay lady lay,

    thanks for your kind and candid comments.

    Unfortunately, we’re short of manpower here, and are not always able to edit every piece with the sharp eye of a copyeditor. But we try.

    I have to disagree with you that words like “crap” denigrate a website’s reputation. We go for a different approach, one that is more casual and relaxed. let’s not be so serious 😀

    Besides, reputable magazines even use words like “fuck” in the articles. It’s a matter of editorial policy really.

    Since you’re kind enough to spot errors for us, why not come on board and be a volunteer copyeditor?

    We’re seriously in need of help here, as you’ve pointed out!

    Oh yes, and please refrain from spamming your comments. It’s an eyesore for readers.

  • bravado

    i seriously think that the scope of comedy, sarcasm and irony of belmont’s article is beyond a lot of people based on these stupid comments especially lay lady lay.

    keep it up belmont!

  • Lay Lady Lay

    terence,

    I don’t think there was any editing at all in the first place. Apparently, the article was published as is – which only shows laziness on the editors’ (if they exist) parts.

    “Short of manpower” is a poor excuse. And the example of words like “fuck” being allowed is also a poor one. I would like to see such words used in New Nation’s articles, if that is the case.

    Spamming? Sorry, but pointing out errors in different posts is for clarity, and certainly not spamming. I think you should go check out what “spamming” means.

    Thanks for the invitation to join your team but I am afraid I am not really interested in helping New Nation.

    • Sita Saniva

      The irony and panache of this article is lost on someone as narrow-minded as you. Words like fuck and crap do not a substandard article make. And if you don’t wish to contribute to making this website even better, which you probably don’t have the mental stamina for in any case, then I suggest that you take those comments and shove it.

  • Kahlil Stultz

    Just discovered this junk. You have no context of history at all Belmont. It’s such a shame. You prance around with your racist girlfriend bragging about what a repressive dictatorship Singapore is, yet hate people who fight for their own rights in worse conditions. Nelson Mandela had every right to fight against people who treated him like an animal in his own country. You’re a piece of work buddy, and I don’t think you have the brains to make a proper response other than “nigger” “retard” or “stupid”.