Now, I didn't say that. Dr. Mahathir did.
The deaths were unnecessary. Deaths are fated by Allah the Almighty.
Yes, those Tausugs made a grave mistake of armed intrusion into our country. But from their own historical perspectives they believe as if Sabah is still part of their homeland. It is a very deep rooted feeling that they are ready to die for it. It is difficult for others to fathom such gamut of feelings. Circumstances of state and regional politics of the past have divided their homeland and separated them from their blood relatives. To them it has been an injustice. Their ancestors have fought against the Spaniards, Americans, and even their own Filipino masters which suppress and still up in arms against them. The strength of Islam in them and bravery make them ready martyrs.
We have all the time in the world to solve the standoff peacefully. It may take 3 weeks or even months to starve and weaken the already cordoned intruders. They are not many and are inferior to our mental, weaponry and other resources. The ultimate aim is to prevent deaths to fellow Muslims brothers. Never mind what the public and world say about being indecisive. More so when a dalang is involved according to several sources.
Right from the first day, Najib said we want to settle it peacefully and avoid bloodshed. What is the signal there? It is a veiled threat. He has upped the tempo too early. Just say to end it peacefully, to mention bloodshed at such an early stage is to draw blood.
This is not sloganeering, a habit Najib picked up during his many years in politics. The consequent is that he could not refine or hone himself befitting what a PM should say or not to say during such a grave crisis. He seems to be a Johnny-come-lately on so many issues that equate him somewhat to 33x1 instead of 11x3 years of politics! By the way, 11 is his feng shui number, Dolah 13. These two are really jokers at times.
Is he in a hurry to solve the crisis afraid that it may become a political issue in the coming election? Now that lives are lost, it becomes an issue that the government is incompetent.
Is this is going to be a repeat of Mamali impasse leading to messacre (death of 14 of Ibrahim Libya's followers and 4 security forces), and also the Khalil-Muhdalena amok? Wisely engaged, time, level-headedness, correct perspectives, and patience are weapons of peace.
The Malaysian security forces upped the tempo to a higher level by making public the time frames to solve the standoff. When the third time limit was ignored we lost face and sent blood curdling to act. Ok, the enemy raised the white flag. Our VAT69 commandos fell into the trap. But then to be safe and sure they should have instructed the enemy to come out in the open, unarmed and then only show our faces, combat ready. Isn't that standard operative in warfare? Perhaps, it is easy for me to say for not being part of the life-risking danger.
Now, look at Najib's announcement. He seems ready to wash his hands off. If Ismail and Zulkefli make it good, Najib is happy, if they fail, I am not to be blamed. The point is, Najib has been going round high and low to transform things, big or small, immaterial whether they are within the portfolio of other ministeries - BR1M, IM4UFM, KR1M, handouts to gain votes (what the taxpayers make of that!) .... He is in a hurry to be proclaimed as the father of transformation. However, when comes to the national acid test to deal with infringement of sovereinty he delegated the job! In fact, he should be much in control of the Operation Room and rightly so as a former Defense Minister supposedly wizened to handle high security matters. Nothing much we hear of his DM days except controversies - Scorpene kickback, Altanthuya, fighter engine lost, disgruntled retired generals, and what not.
Given that Anwar is the dalang, and proven he could be placed under ISA. Oh no, Najib listened and abolished ISA! Najib gets his own medicine for his blunders.