|The ancient greek Peloponnesian War of army versus navy|
Ever since Dato Najib fought back Tun Dr Mahathir with his first salvo on his blog, there had been rapid development on 1MDB. It not only confuses the common observers but the keen ones too.
Nevertheless, there was something interesting emerging out of the many exposes on 1MDB, Thai arrest of Xavier Justo, WSJ revelation of alleged transfer of US$700 million into Dato Najib's account, RM2 million deposit into Datin Seri Rosmah's bank account and subsequent raids and developments on Task Force investigation.
Both sides of Tun M and Najib were avoiding from falling into the trap of playing in each other's "court". There are responses to each other's questions or allegations but not serious effort to pursue it through.
It took a military man to gave a definition to the current happenings and in anticipating the outcome.
Over Hari Raya, we met up a Navy captain friend. As a keen observer of politics himself, he has his own opinion of the situation albeit a different stance from us. Not that we bother to influence him. We only wanted to share our concerns.
On 1MDB, there could be possible slackening on corporate governance, bad investment made, Jho Loh's strange hands, etc. but to accuse of stealing and embezzling RM42 billion or RM2.3 billion or any amount, it is not fun political games. It is a bloody serious allegation that has to be substantiated and not be made fodders for perception play.
We shared with the Navy Captain the observation that Dato Najib is avoiding from giving a direct answer to Tun M and his other detractors' list of questions. Najib preferred to let the process of law to take it's due cause at the expense of politics and negative perception of himself.
Some speculated and accused Najib of hiding something on the basis that he could have denied any wrongdoing or sue the accuser. Quite an easy, simplistic and expected conclusion.
If Najib had done so, it could have serious implication to the due process by the authorities as he could be seen as influencing the outcome. It is similar to those making public statement that could influence due process.
A Prime Minister statement would have strong influence so he had to shut up till it is over. Many would be sceptical but he basically left his fate and those linked to the issue to the due process of law.
The usual due process of law means authorities should not make any statement or share finding with the public. It only get revealed in court should there be any charges. So those asking to be shown which information are tampered by Sarawak Report and The Edge are making political comments without any understanding on due process of law.
Putting aside the technicality and just looking from a tactic and strategy of war, Najib is drawing Tun M into a long drawn out war. He refuses to confront Tun M and even to apply power to flank Tun M since there are legitimate issue that is available.
While, Tun M was racing against time as he up from gear one to gear four in a short time to call for Najib's resignation. In the midst of talk of conspiracy, he deny involvement as he openly said he wants Najib down.
June was the speculated target date for Najib to fall. Now it is August. And a roadshow is heard to begin after Raya.
Why the need to bring Najib down and fast is a mystery? The publicly said reason is that the faster Najib is removed, the earlier effort to reignite the party could begin. The tactic and strategy reason could be something need to be addressed fast.
So what could that be? Economy? Currency? 1MDB? IPP?
1MDB seemed to feature prominently in Tun M's coup on Najib. Not so much GST or BR1M or Malay issue. YTL's IPP is heard to end in September. Could someone confirm?
As far as Najib's response, he is now on a counter attack mode since Xavier Justo's capture by Thai's military-run police and revelation by Singapore authorities. Assuming some of the effort to implicate Tun M's camp by certain "media" has links to Najib, one could observe the same reaction by Tun M.
Tun M is not playing ball and sticking to his side by demanding for Najib to answer the allegations. He is not even responding to the call for proofs to his long list of faulty accusations.
Najib is also sticking to the position to let the authorities and PAC investigate and the one to answer. Najib knows his denial may not be believeable now.
After describing the battle senario, our Navy Captain friend mentioned of one important case study in military school that is similar to the situation. It is an ancient greek war between the mighty city state of Sparta versus Athens called the Peloponnesian War.
It was a war in which the first stage was between 460 to 446 BC and the second stage was 431 to 404 BC. The interesting similarity is it is the first war that had no direct open field battle.
Sparta had a superior land based army. It is a military-led government and a society systematically tuned for war. Boys with deformity not suitable for battle are left to die in the hills.
As a port and civilisation centre, Athens strength lies in the Navy and its financial strength as trading post. Their line of defense was an impenetrable wall around the city.
The advantage and disadvantage of the military tactic and strategy used could be found here.
The Peloponnesian War is significant as a case study for it is one of the early war fought on strategy rather than sheer military strength in which it is lop-sided on both sides. Innvovation was introduced as the Spartan tried it's infamous Phalanx formation, use of missionary soldiers and slaves, importance of logistics and tactical seiges.
Read of it and the history behind the war here.
The war rise out of resentment for the Athens grab for power and prestige, expanding naval empire, and Athens settlers moving into other city-state land. Athens had control on Delian League and their rival is Peloponesian League under Sparta.
Athens was keeping away the strong Spartan army from the sieges and counter with naval seiges into Spartan land. They still had supplies via the sea from the Delian Legues city-states but all begin to fail when disease caused the death of one third of the population.
Sparta had a new general that managed to cut off supply line and it led to Athen lost. However, in the end, it weakened all the Greek city-state. The lesson from the Peloponnesian Wars was that countries that wage war will lose power and prestige instead of losing it.
Read the summary in eduplace.com website here.
To use this example, who do one equate Sparta and Athens to? Tun M as Sparta and Najib as Athens?
Sparta was not a democratic state and was military run thus it could be resemble more closely to Tun M, the leader seldom labeled as dictator. If that is the case, the defensive Najib could end up losing the war.
On the other hand, the leverage of power and resources of a political fighting machinery lies with Najib. It is Tun M that is without any big name general in his army but left to himself to take undertake the attack and defense in collaboration with other alleged "Delian League city-states".
If that is the case, Najib is Sparta with its relentless attack using TV3, MyKMU and gang, BN leaders, Mps and ministers. Tun M will equate to the losing Athens and one must say that Tun M's premiership is now seen as Athenian golden era of Malaysia.
Whichever side is Sparta and Athens, a long drawn war only weakened the pillar of Malaysia's strength which is the stable politics that enabled the country to proper over the years.