‘Third world’ nation enriching a superpower’s begging bowl

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Prime Minister Najib Abdul Razak proudly pledged an unprecedented US$20 billion on 12 September to rescue the United States, or at least to “strengthen the US economy.”

The people of first world America must be very ashamed that despite being a superpower, their president has to take money from a “third world nation.”

But before Americans crow that it is most charitable and benevolent of Malaysia to “strengthen” their  weakening economy, they should ask their ambassador, or even the Pentagon – who seemingly have their ears and eyes to the ground – one question.

Does Donald Trump not know that his Malaysian benefactor had only recently told his people to take on second jobs to tide over difficult times?

Do Americans not know how many unemployed Malaysian graduates are turning into Grab and Uber drivers?

Does Trump not know that his country’s begging bowl is going to be filled with RM100 billion that could have helped feed, shelter and provide critical healthcare for the 30 million Malaysians who struggle in the “third world” country they call home?

Do Americans not know that each year, thousands of parents face a nightmare hunt for scholarships to get their kids into universities, and end up with nothing?

The goods and services tax was unleashed on the Malaysian people under Najib, which sent the cost of living spiralling.

While the rest of the world sees fuel costs go down or at best remain stagnant, Malaysians are shocked every other day or week with rising costs when the clock strikes midnight.

Do the people who sold the “great American dream” to the rest of the world realise that their president is taking money from a nation that can ill afford it?

Najib's government is dishing out RM740 (USD164) per year for each of the 7 million citizens who are struggling with earnings below the poverty benchmark. That is hardly 44 US cents per day.

And yet, Malaysia’s contribution RM100 billion into the Trump administration’s begging bowl is not raising any questions from a humanitarian perspective?

Why is no one asking what RM100 billion could do for a nation with a quarter of its population under the poverty line?

Or is “strengthening the US economy” more important than walking the talk about democratic principles and safeguarding universal humanitarian values?

If not Donald Trump, the American people at least owe the 30 million citizens of Malaysia an explanation.

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