When Malaysia’s Special Branch detained me together with nine others in April 2001, the official reason given was ‘terrorism’. According to what the government announced, and which was reported by the media, the ten of us were planning to start an armed insurrection and that we had imported guns, bombs and rocket launchers for this purpose.
What the Special Branch really wanted to know is what my links with the CIA were. They accused me of being a CIA agent and threatened to charge me for treason — which, they said, would attract the death sentence on conviction.
This was the same thing they did to Anwar Ibrahim’s ‘tennis partner’, Solaimalai Nallakaruppan, in 1998. The Special Branch detained him and threatened to charge him for a criminal offence that would attract the death sentence on conviction.
In 2000, I went to the United States for two weeks and met up with a few people. Somehow the Special Branch not only found out about the whole thing but even had transcripts of what was discussed plus what we had for lunch and so on. (By the way, Dr Chandra Muzaffar met me in the US so he knows about this ‘secret’ trip).
I found that most alarming because what the Special Branch officers told me could only have come from someone present in the meeting. Did the Americans sell me out? If not, how come the Special Branch was able to go into great detail that even my wife did not know about other than those few people present in the meeting in Washington?
Basically, I was supposed to bring the International Republican Institute (IRI) to Malaysia. At that time John McCain was heading the IRI and it was being funded by the United States State Department.
Two of the IRI people came to Malaysia and I brought them to Terengganu to meet up with Mustafa Ali. I told the IRI people that Terengganu was under PAS and Hadi Awang was the Menteri Besar. However, for all intents and purposes, Mustafa Ali is the de facto Menteri Besar and the brains or strategist behind the party.
Because of my ‘record’ with the Special Branch, I told the IRI people that I cannot get directly involved with their Malaysian operation. I do, however, have an outfit that can and which will not be linked back to me. So, as reported in this piece (Republican-linked US Think Tank tells of long ties with Opposition to bring down BN), I brought in the IRI and set them up with a Malaysian outfit that could serve their purpose (the arrangement which still exists until today).
The Special Branch, however, found out, and they called me in for interrogation. They recorded my statement, which included my links to the IRI and how I arranged a Malaysian partner for them. So the Special Branch had full knowledge of what was going on. In 2008, when they detained me a second time, they asked me about IRI and the Malaysian operation that had existed for about six years since 2002.
I am surprised the IRI has revealed their involvement in Malaysian politics for the last 16 years since 2002. Maybe this is because there are no longer any secrets since the Special Branch had known about this all along anyway since 2001. In fact, the Special Branch knows that my initial link up with the IRI was through Anwar Ibrahim’s people in the US. And the Special Branch also knows that the main objective for the IRI’s involvement in Malaysian politics is to see a regime change in Malaysia.
In 2001, I was accused of being a CIA agent and was threatened with an indictment for treason for my links with the IRI (I actually informed the US Embassy in Kuala Lumpur about this). Today, the IRI openly admits they are involved in Malaysian politics and helped oust Barisan Nasional and it is no longer a crime.
The question is why does the US and the IRI (meaning the US State Department) want Barisan Nasional ousted and replaced with Pakatan Harapan? Well, that is another story for another time. But I can give you one hint, though. And that hint is CHINA.