You cannot win a war with empty shells

In 2006, in a political meeting, I mentioned the importance of blogs and internet. The person in charge smiled and said that nobody read blogs but bloggers themselves. When I mentioned facebook, he looked at me like I was from Mars…( At that time, facebook had just been started — I was one of the earliest into facebook in 2006, when most people then were using friendster).

308 of course showed that the power of the net cannot be underestimated.

After 308, one of the reforms that most component parties adopted is to concentrate on internet. Most of these political parties have fortified their cyber departments, and invested money and personnel into these departments. As an example, in the component party Gerakan, the think tank Sedar is now fortified with many staff, many of them are ex-journalists, ready to fight the cyber war.

Is this what reform is about?

 To fight cyber wars and win opinions, you need soldiers but you also need to have real bullets. You cannot have empty shells (so called blank bullets), the inside of which contain no gun powder. You need real bullets with gun powder inside the bullets.

That is to say, to fight the internet war, you need to have ethics, moral , fairness, justice and good governance on your side.

Without that, you can have thousands of soldiers and still cannot win the cyber war. Without righteousness on your side, any attempt at fighting cyber war will be like fighting war without real bullets– only empty bullet shells.

If you are a crook and you are corrupted, no matter how much you mention in you website that your are clean and respectable, people will simply not buy your statement and people will simply not believe you.

Even if all the cyber troopers belonging to a party say that the  party  advocates  multiracialism and a fair and just society,  but the party itself is  supporting a bigger  party which is advocating race based discrimination and policy, no matter how colourful and beautiful is your website, nobody would believe and trust you.

You must walk the talk to be credible, and internet world is no different: you must walk the talk!

You can have the best tank in the world but without real bullets and shells, your tank will be a toothless tiger.

If you are advocating raced based policy, no matter how you pretend in the net that you are for all races, you are for ‘one this’ and ‘one that” you will not win the war.

The internet people are smart and they will not believe you.

That is the essence of fighting any war. If your cause is righteous, half the war is already won, since most people will fight the war for you, even those who do not know you personally. If your cause is unjust and corrupt, most people , even your own friends, will abandon you and will be reluctant to help you.

Recently in CHina, , a  waitress killed an important government official when the official tried to rape her. The whole internet community is up to support  her, as she is seen to be a heroine and because of that and public pressure, , she was acquitted.  Certain media attribute her release to the internet community’s support of her.( read the story here)

But the fact is that if she  is not the righteous one, she would not get the support of the internet community and she probably would have to be sentenced to death.

The internet community is supportive of her because she is in the right.

That is precisely what fighting an internet war is about. You need to be right to win public support , and no amount of rhetoric is going to help win the heart of the people.


33 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. klm
    Jun 19, 2009 @ 16:34:41

    Dr. Hsu.

    At the end of the day, it is about getting the true information out to people. It is about the truth. As one of the blurb in CNN said – “Truth is the most precious commodity”. Internet, facebook, twitter, etc are just the technology to get th truth to the people, all the people in the world.

    No matter how BN & UMNO cybertroopers write and spin, they deal with falsehoods. No matter how many thousands they employed, it is no use without truth.

    Modern technology bypasses all the gates put in by the govt to prevent the truth from slipping out.
    Information is power. But now technology equalises all. The govt has lost a big part of its power. The Internet enhances democracy

    BN must embrace the spirit of the 21st century. Tell the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth, or else you will perish in the exercise of democracy.

    ( sorry for the gibberish, but it sounded good 🙂 )


  2. Hamba
    Jun 19, 2009 @ 17:08:26

    People ( rakyat) nowadays are really smart. No amount of spinning, lies or slander can hide the truth. The problem with UMNO and BN is failure to realise that rakyat is smart. Bombarding rakyat with propaganda doesn’t work anymore. When will they realise this? You cannot lie to all the people all the time!


  3. AM
    Jun 19, 2009 @ 17:12:06

    There you have it, the reason why Gerakan and MCA is very likely going to be buried under the BN banner in the next GE.


  4. cilipadi
    Jun 19, 2009 @ 17:44:49

    If you lost your “INTEGRITY” (i.e. sold in exchange for money, position, power, benefit-in-kind, sex favour and so on), no way you can buy it back, simply because “INTEGRITY” is priceless.

    This happened in BN and of course in PR like the 3 Perak frogs. They can set up million blogs to clarify, no one will believe them. The only way is to tell the truth, nothing but the truth, and repent, to reclaim (not buy back) your “INTEGRITY”.

    It seems to me the 3 guys in PAS have sold their “INTEGRITY”. Unless they can prove me wrong. The 3 guys will end up like the 3 Perak frogs.

    Still can claim “morality” and “integrity” not important in politics?

    3 guys in PAS makan cili, 3 guys in PAS rasa pedas. You know the 3 guys, monk?


  5. cilipadi
    Jun 19, 2009 @ 18:13:54

    Haha, one comment same as my view,

    At 19 June 2009 09:49, Anonymous Hamba said…

    One good thing that came out from this scandal is…..we the rakyat now know who are the trojan horses planted in PAS by UMNO…. I think this will be their last term as wakil rakyat or even as PAS leaders.


  6. aku
    Jun 19, 2009 @ 18:25:37

  7. Kenny Gan
    Jun 19, 2009 @ 19:16:02

    BN as usual misses the mark. It’s not the medium, it’s the message.

    Online readers are not restricted to any blogs run but any one party. They can read and compare from all over and make up their minds.

    To BN, they think it’s the medium that matters, not the message.


  8. Kenny Gan
    Jun 19, 2009 @ 20:00:06

    News of HKL’s report on Saiful appear to have been blacked out in the mainstream media (correct me if I’m wrong). Is this an indication that the govt wants to push the case through at all cost?


  9. Bentoh
    Jun 19, 2009 @ 20:50:09

    Actually, internet readers are no smarter… but they have wide range of choices and freedom of information…


  10. Dr Hsu
    Jun 20, 2009 @ 13:59:04

    Breaking news

    For those interested to know, Huan Cheng Guan is now suspended for 3 years by the Central Working Committee…

    The suspension will be reviewed every 6 months..

    Huan can also appeal to the Central Committee within 14 days against the decision of the CWC…


  11. 过路客
    Jun 20, 2009 @ 14:33:29

    Dr. Hsu

    Ya, is 3 years suspension.

    similar to that AmNo Ah Mad Is Mail of Bt Bendera..




  12. devil
    Jun 20, 2009 @ 14:44:21

    I was wrong about what Gerakan CWC would do to Huan. 😦

    I read them wrong. I can only conclude that the people around KTK are more afraid than I thought.

    I wait for the appeal and see what happens next.


  13. Gerakan Watcher
    Jun 20, 2009 @ 15:13:40

    3 year suspension means that Huan cannot take part in the next party election in 2011.

    This means that Huan’s political career is as good as gone.

    Huan will be forced to cross to PKR.

    UMNO politicians close to Huan will probably voice out.


  14. Gerakan Watcher
    Jun 20, 2009 @ 15:14:24

    Wacth what utusan has to say on this. Interesting.


  15. Justin Choo
    Jun 20, 2009 @ 15:22:31

    Gerakan Watcher,

    “Huan will be forced to cross to PKR.”

    I hope PKR is not a tong sampah.


  16. Dr Hsu
    Jun 20, 2009 @ 16:07:16

    PKR has too many sampah. The 2 Perak frogs + many others exUMNO are sampah.
    PKR needs to rid itself of these sampah. It has to prove to all Malaysians that it is not tong sampah.


  17. 过路客
    Jun 20, 2009 @ 17:22:01


    Exactly! We hope PKR is not a tong sampah!


    Dear DR.

    100% agree

    PKR needs to rid itself of these “tong sampah” image. It has to prove to all Malaysians that it is not tong sampah.



  18. Kenny Gan
    Jun 20, 2009 @ 17:32:02

    Dr, Hsu, I hope you’re not saying that Huan is “sampah”. I think he’s a capable leader although I cannot comment on his ideology.

    Huan will seriously weaken Gerakan Penang if he crosses over to PKR. Why such a harsh action when he has apologized and is willing to remain in the party?

    If party leaders like Teng and Koh think only of protecting their position instead of the good of the party I don’t see much hope for Gerakan.


  19. Kenny Gan
    Jun 20, 2009 @ 18:11:45

    Two things can happen now:

    1) Huan quits Gerakan and joins PKR

    2) Umno leaders pressure Gerakan to lift the suspension. Huan’s position in the party is strengthened while Koh and Teng quakes in their shoes.

    I think No. 2 is more likely. Let’s wait and see.


  20. A true Malaysian
    Jun 20, 2009 @ 18:11:53

    Kenny Gan,

    Gerakan Penang, or whole Malaysia for that matter, already gone and not relevant anymore, with or without Huan.

    Gerakan is still financially sound, lots of properties waiting for liquidation upon dissolution, and members are entitled to a share of money from liquidating of these properties. Maybe this is the main reason these opportunists still hang around Gerakan to get a share of it? Possible? Of course people like Dr. Hsu are not looking for that.

    PKR needs to get rid of the rubbishes still in there….FULLY AGREED.


  21. frank
    Jun 21, 2009 @ 14:03:24


    Huan threatens to go — Again

    KUALA LUMPUR, June 21 — Accusing the central working committee (CWC) of ignoring the party’s constitution, Gerakan vice president Huan Cheng Guan has revived his threat to leave if his three-year suspension for what the party calls “openly attacking the party and the party leadership,” is not retracted.

    Huan’s on-again-off-again threats to leave Gerakan amid rumours he will join PKR had initially led to a show-cause letter being served on the leader, who claims to be highly influential in mainland Penang.

    But it is unclear if Huan’s actions will have much of an effect even though he is a vice-president.

    Since losing Penang in last year’s general elections, Gerakan has been reduced to a bit-part player in the Barisan Nasional (BN) and Huan’s self-proclaimed influence did not help prevent his party from a total wipe-out last March in their former stronghold.

    On Friday night, the party’s CWC decided on the disciplinary action, which secretary-general Teng Chang Yeow said should have been harsher due to the “severe nature of his misbehaviour.”

    Speaking to The Malaysian Insider today, Huan said that he wants a proper hearing by a disciplinary committee — which should have been set up in the first place to hear his case.

    “Instead, the CWC has unilaterally made the decision behind closed doors where nobody knows what they discussed,” he said of the committee, which only includes the top leadership and not the 23 ordinary members of the central committee.

    The length of the suspension means that Huan cannot contest the next party polls scheduled for 2011, effectively eradicating his influence in the medium term, so the former air force major believes there is no point staying if this is the case………………!

    > CAN you believe it? The one who claimed who loves the Party with his whole soul again behaves like a snooty virago, pompous and self-righteous!

    If only Gerakan has got all these kinds of so-called leaderships, come next GE, the same tons of rotten eggs will still be on their serving plates, and the Party be sealed in total oblivion!

    Probably, ash to ash…together with the founding father!


  22. Disgusted
    Jun 21, 2009 @ 22:16:17

    Party loyalty? Huan got to eat his own words!

    Should be enough to last his stomach for 3 years.



  23. Justin Choo
    Jun 22, 2009 @ 00:48:05

    “Gerakan is still financially sound, lots of properties waiting for liquidation upon dissolution, and members are entitled to a share of money from liquidating of these properties.” so said A true Malaysian.

    Dr Hsu,
    Can you pass me a membership form?


  24. romerz
    Jun 22, 2009 @ 02:54:50

    Dr Hsu,

    I know you would probably hate me for saying this this but isn’t it time for you to re access your position in PGRM? It’s close to 1.5 years now and if I remembered correctly, the time frame given by KTK then was 6 months to a year.

    Last night I had the opportunity to exchange gmail talk with an ex-politician from Sabah (we both met him at one of the sessions in Penang).

    Whilst we both still disagree on what is the best course for the country, we both agreed that PGRM is probably finished.

    Not because of ideology but because of weak leadership!

    I hope you don’t mind my saying this again despite your previous explanations, time for you and others like minded persons to change the leadership or quit the party!

    Sorry Doc, this country will continue to spiral downwards if good men will do nothing!


  25. klm
    Jun 22, 2009 @ 10:09:37

    A quote from Huan:

    “They are trying to get rid of me because they are worried about me contesting in the next party elections. They are afraid of me and they are afraid even of my shadow,”

    That is what it all about. And Gerakan leadership is scared. Boo!

    The only thing is the motivation. Political power or the party’s assets. I think it is the assets. It will be a cheap exercise to takeover Gerakan and then changed the Trustees.

    Going over to Opposition with 1,000 members is chicken feed.

    P/S. Remembered I said that Gerakan CWC is running scared. Now, Huan is saying the same thing. This is the problem of a weak leadership in time of crisis. They shit in their pants and become irrational.


  26. Justin Choo
    Jun 22, 2009 @ 10:57:11

    Dr Hsu,

    Just like Romerz, I cannot tahan lagi; so this is my piece again:

    The patient is clinically DEAD. Don’t waste your time and looking “stupid” in the eyes of all the other Doctors. There are thousands of deserving patients out there crying to be saved. Please abandon the DEAD Duck..go over there to save the ones who really need your help.

    My offer still stand, I can carry your bag!!! This is the best position for me, as I will be seen by the public when the media shine on you, just like KaTaK grinning away by the side of Bad Awi, and now by the side of Na Jeep.


  27. Dr Hsu
    Jun 22, 2009 @ 11:09:09

    romerz ,
    I gave myself a year after the last NDC. Yes, after the NDC, we have met him several times together and debated with him.

    He gave me a time frame of a year too just before the NDC. But I agree with you that it is now unlikely that he will go out since he has got a very important post.

    While it is getting more and more unlikely, I will still keep to my own time frame, as a promise to my own members and friends inside the party.

    As to your view of changing the leadership, it has to wait for the next party election which is 2 years plus down the road.

    In the case of Huan, I totally disagree with his type of UMNO style politics but having said that, personally I think 3 years suspension is too harsh..

    Punishment should not be based on what type of person he is but rather on the issues involved, and the severity of the issues involved does not warrant a 3 year suspension. My own assessment is oner year suspension would be enough to act as deterrent, and as a disciplinary measure.

    It is like what i have said before: this is a country practising rule by law, and thus , any punishment must be in accordance with the law and rules, in this case, the rules of the party.

    Just like I will defend Dr Teng’s right to voice out his opinion (whether we agree with his view or not), I will also defend the right of Huan to get a fair hearing ( regardless of his personal background), , and defend the right of the grassroots to voice out their opinion, either in support or against Huan..

    I hope Huan will appeal, and then let us voice out our opinion in the CC. I think some of the CC are still independnet minded and not influenced by the top leaders.


  28. klm
    Jun 22, 2009 @ 11:39:28

    Dr Hsu

    Look at Huan’s arguments. They appeal to the sentiment of the members.

    1. He is not in the silly and saliva spitting doctor camp = +
    2. He is against the current leaders for not listening to grass root = +
    3. He is willing to speak out against things that are wrong = +
    4. He is willing to make sacrifice for the sake of the party = +
    5. He is for fairness and justice in the party = +

    We should make him a hero. We should make him
    a rallying point against the current leaders. I think he is the man who can take KTK and cronies down.

    Look at the issues. Dont look at the man.

    🙂 🙂 🙂


  29. klm
    Jun 22, 2009 @ 13:19:56

    I think Haun should join MCA. That should start the process to merge Gerakan and MCA. This is better for Chinese politics.


  30. Disgusted
    Jun 22, 2009 @ 22:56:02

    The sun shall rise from the west, the day Gerakan and MCA gets married.


  31. cilipadi
    Jun 22, 2009 @ 23:50:39


    I just back from holidays in Melbourne. Lucky me, not subject to quarantine as I brought a lot of cilipadi along, to ward of the virus, hahaha.

    Well, I told you. Unity govt talk is just a spin by Umno. The moles they planted in PAS need to back of somehow. How to ignore majority PAS members support anyway. You need two palms to clap, don’t you?

    I see Malaysian people are ready to send PR to take over Federal govt soon. Bye-bye amno.

    Watch out your mouth next time, moles.

    Moles makan cili, Moles rasa pedas


  32. klm
    Jun 23, 2009 @ 12:33:01

    monk. There is a chance that MCA and part of Gerakan gets married. The part that would divorce from Gerakan.


  33. huan cheng guan
    Jun 26, 2009 @ 02:11:24

    Thanks for all the comments, i personally think Gerakan have to go back to the basic. Maybe we have been in the goverment for too long and that made us complacent. Its good that we can go back and revisit our Party history, why the rakyat support us in the past ? and now its totally difference. why the rakyat in penang reject gerakan ?. As for me , if they sack me, i will also keep on voicing my opinion. I dont know since when has Gerakan become so sensitive, cakap sikit pun tak bolih.


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