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"The country was in peril; he was jeopardising his traditional rights of freedom and independence by daring to exercise them." - Joseph Heller (Catch-22)

COMMENT The reality is that Umno failed Sarawak and Sabah a long time ago. Even in those early days, there was an undercurrent of resentment towards West Malaysians; as if the indigenous peoples understood the future in that precious 18 (or should that be 20) point agreement was nothing but a pipe dream.

From 1968 to 1969, I was the resident naval officer in Kuching. British and Malaysian military and police personnel in the midst of anti-communist/terrorist operations in Sarawak would congregate at the open air food court, which was a market place in the daytime in the centre of Kuching town. There the former colonialists and their post-independent comrades would trade operational stories.

One particular encounter amongst the denizens of the food court would have a profound effect on my life...

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