MH17: Malaysia’s Anger for Justice
Malaysians are rightly growing angrier and angrier, as grief and shock is being replaeced by frustration that nothing concrete at justice for the victims and their families has been achieved since MH17 was shot down last week. Instead, news of pro-Russian forces blocking crash investigators at the site and not returning one blackbox of MH17 besides general stonewalling by Russia, dominated. The UN is mulling a resolution drafted by Australia to condemn the downing of MH17. Expectedly, Russia and its allies would object or abstain, since Russia’s complicity in the shooting is deep. All eyes are on Malaysia and how far it intends to work with the other aggrieved states to demand justice. It would be an uphill task as Russia is bound to be uncooperative despite the risk of being seen as a pariah state.
Malaysia must not forgive nor forget
By Wong Sai Wan –
I am angry and I am sure that I am not alone. I want justice and, again, I am sure I am not alone.
We cannot allow MH17 to be forgotten or swept away for political and economic needs.
Those responsible — no matter whether directly or indirectly — for the murder of the 298 people on board Malaysia Airlines Flight MH17 from Amsterdam on that fateful Thursday must be brought to justice.
The Special Parliament meeting on Wednesday to debate and condemn the downing of MH17 must not be about only speeches. Malaysians expect — no, demand — more than only empty talk. Our leaders must react with the anger that all of us feel.
I suggest that Parliament orders the Attorney-General to initiate a criminal investigation into this matter and to bring the perpetrators to justice here in Malaysia, if not at The International Court of Justice.
Attorney-General Abdul Gani Patail must be firm in getting the murderers prosecuted. They must be put on public trial for mass murder and be put to death not only in retribution, but also as a deterrent to anyone else even thinking about it.
The Americans have their September 11 tragedy. MH17 is ours.
We have all read about those killed. Many of them are experts in various fields that could have made the world a better place. These murderers have robbed all of us of fathers, mothers, siblings and friends.
NEED FOR SWIFT JUSTICE
The United Nations must be forced to seek out the shooters, planners and, ultimately, the leaders responsible for this most dastardly of murders.
Malaysia is seeking a seat on the United Nations Security Council at the end of this year and we must now make MH17 part of our campaign for that seat. If the UN fails to move, Malaysia must act, even if we have to do so on our own.
Shooting down a civilian aircraft without provocation is an act of war by any definition.
We must act swiftly to bring about justice, especially for the sake of the 298 people killed and for our nation, while we grieve for MH370.
Many of us are still reeling from that tragedy and the nation as a whole is struggling to come to terms with it.
Four months later, we are no closer to the truth than that fateful Saturday of March 8.
However, MH17 is different.
We know who is probably responsible and the world needs to hunt down the criminals.
Malaysia must start by recording in the strongest possible terms its anger by pointing its finger at Ukraine and Russia. These two countries, which we consider friends, must open their doors to our investigators to bring the murderers to justice.
Many people, including myself, do not believe the Russians do not know who pulled the trigger or who ordered the act. If Russia wants to remain a global powerhouse, it must ensure the prosecution must take place and the murderers punished.
Political and economic alliances must not be a consideration when dealing with this.
Almost 100 years ago, the United States entered World War I after the ocean liner RMS Lusitania was torpedoed by a German submarine in 1915. The attack killed 128 Americans on board, among the 1,198 passengers and crew who died in the sinking.
I am sure that if MH17 were an American or British aircraft, there would be international hell to pay. It is our job to make sure this precedence also applies in this case and not allow even one person to escape prosecution.
There may be a civil war in the area the plane was shot down, but downing a civilian aircraft is unforgiveable.
The perpetrators must be brought to justice and I, on behalf of all Malaysians, offer them our courts to do so.
THE MALAY MAIL ONLINE
ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
Wong Sai Wan is editor-in-chief of Malay Mail.