Under Pressure, Malaysian PM Beats Patriotic Drum

Under Pressure, Malaysian PM Beats Patriotic Drum
Photo Credit: AP / 達志影像

What you need to know

Under pressure over an international corruption scandal, Malaysia's PM looks for a patriotism drive at home.

Patriotism is more than just raising the Jalur Gemilang, singing the national anthem or making a pledge to adhere to the Rukun Negara principles, Prime Minister Najib Abdul Razak says.

In a blog posting on the coming Merdeka celebrations on Aug 31, the prime minister said there are numerous levels in patriotism.

The first level, he explained, is the joining of hands among Malaysians to achieve a beneficial objective for the nation.

“Everything that we do and every work done with the intention to raise the living standard among us can be classified as patriotic spirit,” he said.

The second level, according to the prime minister, is the genuine help extended to others in need.

Therefore, Najib said he was proud that many Malaysian youths are volunteering with local NGOs that cater for those in need of assistance.

As for the third level, the prime minister described this as the effort to protect the nation’s harmony and sovereignty, even if it required sacrificing one’s life.

“The sacrifices of our security forces, who are always faced with risks in order to protect the nation, fall in this category,” he said.

Najib said the people also have the responsibility to protect the nation’s harmony.

“We must avoid misunderstandings, cease fighting and be cautious of the threat of slander because these things can ruin harmony,” he added.

The News Lens has been authorized to repost this article. The piece was first published on Malaysiakini.

(Launched on November 20, 1999, Malaysiakini.com offers daily news and views in English, Malay, Chinese and Tamil.)

First Editor: Edward White
Second Editor: J. Michael Cole