Mengele is best remembered for his work to create an Aryan master-race, befitting the Third Reich. During WWII, he performed experiments on inmates at Nazi concentration camps, many of which had no scientific basis.
People were operated on without anaesthetics. Mengele was motivated by the desire for racial purification and he satisfied his passion for the study of genetics, by experimenting on twins.
These experiments started during WWII and continued in Argentina, after his escape from Germany.
We are aware that Mahathir has a morbid obsession with all things Jewish. He has a special mention of the Jews in his book ‘The Malay Dilemma’; he blamed the 1997 financial crisis on a Jewish conspiracy; and, in 2003, his anti-Semitic speech caused an international outcry.
Last week, he reiterated his stance that the Jews “created many problems for us and the rest of the world” but then, appeared to distance himself from the comments of his former cabinet minister, Sanusi Junid, who said Mahathir’s economic policies were anti-Jewish.
In their youth, both Mengele and Mahathir were both intelligent and popular men, but within a few years of finishing their medical degrees, their racist views shaped their future lives.
In Nazi Germany, the Sturmabteilung or ‘Brownshirts’ played an important role in bringing Adolf Hitler to power in the 1920s and 1930s. They provided the security during Nazi rallies and assemblies, created trouble for the opposition and harassed the Jewish community. Young boys between 14 and18 years of age were encouraged to join the Hitler Youth movement.
The parallels with the Malaysian scene are uncanny. Extremist groups aligned with Umno, harass NGOs and the opposition. Teenagers in secondary schools are allegedly encouraged to join Umno Youth organisations. Some are allegedly told that their prospects of a job and advancement in their chosen career will be higher.
Many Malaysians see Mahathir as unrepentant, unforgiving, dismissive, divisive and irrational, when they read newspaper reports about him. Umno is in dire straits but when Mahathir attacks the current premier, Najib Abdul Razak, one feels that Mahathir has designs on the premiership.
Mahathir and Najib may play the ‘good cop, bad cop’ routine, but make no mistake, their objective is the same: to create fear in the divided Malay population and make them vote Umno.
If Umno wins, even by a whisker, Mahathir will be safe.
If Umno falls, then everyone in Umno, MCA and MIC will be in trouble; but the chief engineer of the Malay master-race, Mahathir will be doomed.
Mahathir bullies and confuses the Malays with conflicting views. He says they are strong and respected, but then changes his mind and describes them as greedy and beggars in their own land.
He blames everyone, including the Jews for the failure of the Malays, but he ignores two things - himself as the chief architect of the denigration of the Malay mind, and Umno, the party which he manipulated to support him, his family and his cronies.
Malaysia is defined by its multicultural diversity but Mahathir took away our tolerance and uniqueness, and he left us without any shared values. Without shared values, no country can move forward, as we focus only on our particular racial interests.
Mahathir introduced a system of patronage and cronyism that puts those in other banana republics to shame. He bought off individuals and groups. He and his party continued to renege on their promises. The poor get poorer while the middle classes are increasingly isolated. The inability of the government agencies to tackle corruption, drives everyone to despair.
Mahathir is conscious that Najib has lost his grip on Umno and the country. Recently, members of the KL Taxi Association threatened Najib that they would vote for the opposition if Umno does not accede to their demands. Groups such as these, which Umno cultivated in the past, have lost confidence in Umno.
This is where the taxi drivers are wrong. They are nothing more than blackmailers. They should only vote for the opposition if they think their policies will benefit them and their children’s future.
This is what Mahathir has done to a majority of the Malays; he has disengaged their brains.
For generations, the Malays were indoctrinated by Umno with handouts and cheap gimmicks. Malays functioned by demanding or bullying others into doing something for them, because they were the master-race.
Now that Malaysians are coming out of the cycle of dependence, Mahathir’s greatest fear is not that he will be jailed or punished for his past deeds. An egotist like Mahathir is more afraid that his ‘legacy’ will be lost.
There are two things Mahathir dreads.
First, that the people he trusted will betray him. In the run-up to GE13, Mahathir is afraid of people who will reveal details of how they were instigated to follow his instructions. These people are watching from the sidelines, wondering who will be first to expose his past deeds.
Mahathir’s second fear is that people will realise that he has betrayed them; he sold them a lie, and that three generations have been mired in that lie.
The evidence is available for all to see.
The New Economic Policy has been a failure; Mahathir’s heavy industries have failed; we don’t have a decent national transport network; our once-proud national airline is floundering; our education is in the doldrums; mega-projects like the Bakun dam only benefit the cronies; our cost of living has increased because whenever we pay for almost any commodity or service, a levy to some crony is included in the price.
The confessions of people, coupled with the sense of betrayal, will be enough to annihilate Umno and erase all traces of Mahathir’s legacy.
Mahathir has betrayed the rakyat but the irony is that he himself would feel betrayed, if his legacy were not continued and his son does not inherit the country. As far as Mahathir is concerned, that would be the ultimate Betrayal Rakyat 1Malaysia.
MARIAM MOKHTAR is a non-conformist traditionalist from Perak, a bucket chemist and an armchair eco-warrior. In ‘real-speak', this translates into that she comes from Ipoh, values change but respects culture, is a petroleum chemist and also an environmental pollution-control scientist.