Armed forces and police veterans organisation Persatuan Patriot Kebangsaan has called on former prime minister Najib Abdul Razak to correct the “misleading” claim that Umno forebearers once fought and won over communists during the past insurgency.
Patriot president Mohamed Arshad Raji (photo, above) said there “is no historical record” of Umno having formed groups to fight the insurgency, which took place over several decades from the 1940s to 60s, and 60s to 80s.
“For the record, in the war against the communist insurgents, all ethnic groups in our country participated – Malays, Chinese, Indians, Sikhs, Orang Asli, Iban, Dayak, Kadazan, and the Serani (Eurasian).
“Najib’s statement had played down the pivotal role of the security forces, such as the Royal Malaysia Police and the Malaysian Armed Forces in defeating the communist threat that had taken countless lives and maimed numerous members of the security forces,” Arshad said in a statement today.
Patriot is referring to a claim made by Najib last Sunday, when, speaking at the Gombak Umno annual general meeting, Najib said Umno must be able to resist the "cruel" Pakatan Harapan government just as party forebears once fought and defeated the communists during the decades-long insurgency.
“Don't let me (fight the battle) all by myself,” Najib told party grassroots.
In his statement today, Arshad accused the former prime minister of “willfully manipulating facts and history” to regain lost popularity among the Malay community.
He added: “Members of the security forces who had served throughout the period of the communist insurgency can easily vouch that they had never seen a single Umno member carrying a 30kg pack filled with ration and ammunition on their back and a rifle in hand, foraging the jungles of Pahang, Perak, Kedah and Sarawak, risking stepping on booby traps, to seek out the communist insurgents.
“Neither have any of its members fallen fighting the communist insurgents.”