Aliran Monthly 31: 7 editor’s note

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Boy, oh boy, this has been an exciting, eventful month, and we are still feeling the after-shocks from the Bersih 2.0 ‘quake’, which captured the imagination of many Malaysians.

aliran monthly cover Francis Loh looks back and wonders if so many Malaysians would have marched in KL had PM Najib proclaimed ‘Democratising Malaysia’ as part of his his GTP or NKRA. In a second piece, he notes that the demand for democracy has followed the nation’s socio-economic transformation.

This demand has been amplified using social media tools, but Josephine De Costa maintains that true political change is still brought about by strong networks pressuring hierarchical party structures.

Malaysians also had to contend with anti-Bersih talk, leaving Azmil Tayeb bewildered as to how some people mindlessly accepted obvious propaganda. An initially hesitant Yuganeshwaran Muthumaniam got caught up in the excitement on the streets, where he noted that the event succeeded in uniting Malaysians in a way that Najib’s 1Malaysia had failed. Certainly, Bersih has left a deep political impact, writes Johan Saravanamuttu, forcing the PM and BN to go into damage control mode.

Ahead of the Bersih rally, 30 PSM activists were detained, including six under the Emergency Ordinance: Jeyakumar, Saras, Sugu, Chon Kai, Babu and Letchu. Who are they and are they really a threat to national security? A closer look in a series of articles finds them to be passionate activists, truly committed to building a more just society.

Finally, Param Cumaraswamy pays tribute to the late Raja Aziz Addruse, a man of integrity who set such high standards for his fellow lawyers.

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