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They appeared in Machap, and now they have appeared in Ijok. Pemuda Umno members bearing the sign of the scorpion. Most opposition campaigners on the ground in both Machap and Ijok have so far have dismissed these annoyances as that of immature 'samseng'. That is a huge mistake.

As the saying goes, if you drop a frog into boiling water, it will quickly leap out but if you put it in tepid water and then raise the temperature to a boiling point, the frog will simply remain until it dies.

Malaysians on the ground and the grassroots of opposition politics, see the rowdy behaviour of Pemuda Umno as merely the latest escalation of its ridiculous conduct. I beg to differ with that simplistic dismissal.

I see a group, that if left unchecked, will simply be further emboldened. I see a group that lacks any vision, and whose modus operandi is thuggery. I see a group that cherishes wild, inflammatory rhetoric, and celebrates a fire-brand leadership.

I see a group that makes it okay (and indeed, makes it necessary) for other groups to behave like brutes.

You see 'samseng', I see an armed militia waiting to happen. All they need is to be left unchecked for a year or two, and then for them to find an excuse. As a matter of national security, Pemuda Umno needs to be stopped now.