Malaysiakini Letter

Did Pakatan attack hastily?

Karamjit Gill  |  Published:  |  Modified:

As depicted in ‘The Art of War’, there are essentially five important points to victory:

1) He will win who knows when to fight and when not to fight.

2) He will win who knows how to handle both superior and inferior forces.

3) He will win whose army is animated by the same spirit throughout all its ranks.

4) He will win who prepares himself and waits to take the enemy unprepared, and

5) He will win who has military capacity and is not interfered by the sovereign.

Pondering on the above pointers, it is clear why the Pakatan coalition is cracking. While they may have started the battle on the right track, they definitely underestimated the strength of Prime Minister Najib Abdul Razak and his compatriots. They started with the same spirit of dethroning the government. However, due to very different ideologies, they broke apart.

Although Pakatan demonstrated military capacity, constant sovereign interference by Lim Guan Eng stirred unrest.

The biggest problem they have is unity. If they do not work in sync, they will falter time and time again.

“There are not more than five musical notes, yet the combinations of these five give rise to more melodies than can ever be heard. There are not more than five primary colours, yet in combination they produce more hues than can ever be seen. There are not more than five cardinal tastes, yet their combination yield more flavours than can ever be tasted.” - Sun Tzu

Najib appeared weak when he is actually strong, and strong when he was weak. He played by the law of deception. He toiled with the mind of the opposition.

His actions were clearly guided by Sun Tzu’s quote, “If your enemy is secure at all points, be prepared for him. If he is in superior strength, evade him. If your opponent is temperamental, seek to irritate him. Pretend to be weak, that he may grow arrogant. If he is taking his ease, give him no rest. If his forces are united, separate them.

“If sovereign and subject are in accord, put division between them. Attack him where he is unprepared, appear where you are not expected.”

Pakatan preaches equality but seldom practices them. They alleged misappropriation of funds but are alleged to do it themselves. They accuse their opponent of favouritism and nepotism but they live by the same principle. They cry foul on deceits but conspire lies themselves. They are looking like the mirror image of their opponent, only different in colours and sizes.

The Pakatan battalion is led by possibly the weakest leader in the world. Although Lim Kit Siang says that BN is comprised of clowns and they are like a circus, the fact remains that the head of Pakatan itself is a clown. She has no idea what to say when there is no script to read from. In order to ascertain she is a leader, she rattles statements that would make Ahmad Maslan look intelligent.

She is a symbol of weakness. Until a new leader is selected, Pakatan will continue to struggle.

As Ron Carpenter, Jr said, “A teachable spirit and a humbleness to admit your ignorance or your mistake will save you a lot of pain. However, if you’re a person who knows it all, then you’ve got a lot of heavy-hearted experiences coming your way”. We have seen Najib admitting to shortcomings in BN and pledging to evolve as time progresses. How often do we see the opposition admitting their mistakes and taking ownership of their mishaps?

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