US Embassy: Tel-Aviv to Jerusalem

History is in the making today. We have the honor of witnessing a President who has tact yet has the guts to do what is RIGHT: firstly, to admit that Jerusalem is Israel’s eternal and undivided capital; and secondly, that nothing, not even factions in the Arab World who support Hamas, which by the way is a TERROR organization, can stop the moving of the Embassy from Tel-Aviv to Jerusalem. However, this move will have ramifications to the geopolitics of the region.

I applaud President Donald Trump for finally delivering his campaign promise: to move the US embassy in Israel from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem. This move has more significance than anyone can imagine. Jerusalem was, and still is a hotly contested holy site between Jews and Arabs, with either side not backing down until they get the land. However, the truth has a way of revealing itself, and we know the truth is that: firstly, Jews aren’t conquerors or settlers, certainly not a monster like how the mainstream media paints them; and secondly, Palestinian isn’t even a word. Goodness, Palestine didn’t even exist thousands of years ago. Historical artifacts point to the existence of a powerful ancient Jewish kingdom during the time of King David and King Solomon 3,000 years ago. Therefore, Israel rightfully belongs to the Jews. However, the international community and the UN are not on the same footing as us. Just last week, 151 UN states vote to disavow Israeli ties to Jerusalem whereas only 6 stood with Israel. Prime Minister Netanyahu thanked the US for standing together with Israel and for its continued support for Israel. (Although he is a proponent of Zionism, he himself is embroiled in a mess of his own, scandals and whatnot, so the Knesset is divided among itself, causing the progress of Zionism to halt.)

Now, the tables have turned. USA, the UN’s biggest contributor, has reaffirmed its commitment to see through the promise of making the world see that Jerusalem remains the capital of Israel. The Arab League will definitely retaliate, even the leaders of all the 28 EU countries are already voicing their disapproval of Trump’s move. Although it seems this move is most unwise and seem like a bad idea to many, this will be the only way to ensure stability in the region. Ironic, but an almost foolproof way to bring peace.

Remember what appeasement brought when Chamberlain decided to appease Hitler in 1938? Did it turn out well? Certainly not! What did work though, was resolute leaders who want war to end with as little casualties as possible. This is what made the Allies victorious and if we extract this to today’s context, Trump is trying the achieve the same as what Franklin Roosevelt did in World War II.

In the event Trump heeds the venomous advice of his other allies, this will prove to be a major victory of the Boycott and Divest and state of Israel movement (BDS) who are committed to see the Arabs reign supreme and to kill Jews and want nothing but violence (although they claim not to want this)

I hope the US remains steadfast in its decision to start moving the embassy to Jerusalem. Long live Freedom and Liberty!

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#RIPJustice

In today’s world, the freedom of speech and religion is especially threatened. Below are some examples of people who are willing to jeopardize their life to stand up for their beliefs and contribute for the greater good of society.

This year is nothing short of tumultuous, already in the region we have seen cases of innocent people being put to jail for what they strongly believe in — a force and presence beyond human comprehension: God. Imprisoned on the pretense of false allegations. Imprisoned for their faith. Imprisoned for standing up for what they believe is right, which unfortunately society has found it displeasing and harmful to the nation. In Jarkarta, Indonesia, the country of my birth, controversial ethnic Chinese and Christian governor Basuki Purnama, affectionately known as Ahok, is jailed on false accusations by hardline Muslims that he blasphemes their religion and should be imprisoned, some even called for the shedding of his blood. The repercussions of his arrest reverberated throughout the country, in the region, and the world. On Wednesday, the United States Ambassador to Indonesia Joseph Donovan called on government and religious leaders across the archipelago to speak out against intolerance. He also added that (in accordance to the Jakarta Globe) : “We (the US) do not believe that it should be illegal to express opinions about a particular religion. We believe that blasphemy laws anywhere in the world jeopardise freedom of religion, expression, assembly and freedom of the press.” . My thoughts exactly. It’s preposterous to think that people (Ahok isn’t the first, many have faced persecution in the past) can be tried and sentenced to a morbid life in prison just because a large group of foolhardy folks from the rock bottom of the socio-economic pyramid demanded for him to face the consequences for ‘insulting’ Islam.

It all started when Ahok was still campaigning for another rerun to be the governor of Indonesia. He quoted a verse from the Quran that said it was not alright for Muslims to choose leaders who are non-Muslim. He freakin just quoted the verse, and that doing what the Quran demanded is a foolish thing to do. Hence, some sciolistic nutheads interpreted it the wrong way, accusing him of blaspheming the state religion, and as for the rest, we all have pretty much have figured it out. The shady Supreme Court judges that presided over his case decided to extend the trial (mostly to break Ahok’s resolve and crush him, which they did to no avail lolz), after which they pronounced him GUILTY. Guilty of a crime he didn’t commit. Guilty of just quoting their holy and most often, confusing religious book.

This is one of Indonesia’s most defining moments in history. Our descendants will remember Indonesians and people who are illogical, uneducated and blind followers of a regime most dedicated to crushing any other individual who holds immense power AND isn’t a Muslim.

I’m certainly ashamed. My grandfather fought for the independence of this country that has been held captive by their Dutch colonial masters. Now they’re repaying the sacrifice of the veterans who served the country, by imprisoning the only fellow who dared to stand up for his beliefs, who dared to bring a wind-sweeping, avalanche-tumbling, wave-crashing change to Indonesia.

Ahok cleared up the corruption that has clogged the Indonesian government since its independence. Ahok revolutionized the way Indonesians live and work and play. He and his team improved transportation by following in Singapore’s footsteps. He transformed a once red-light district to a place where hip youngsters skate and play and where families can have picnics etc. His legacy lives on. All foreign news media had access to news coverage on Ahok and his trailblazing campaign and his short tenure as governor, and all agree on several things:

1. He is a revolutionary leader.

2. He left a legacy for Indonesia.

3. He’s a life-impacting, selfless Christian and ethnic Chinese. Even though he is from Indonesia’s minority ethnic group and religious group, he rose through the ranks as Indonesia’s best, and only useful governor.

4. He is judged unrighetously in a country that prides itself in religious tolerance (which in actual fact they never did have. They have always hated the Chinese as they’re richer than most ethnic Malay Indonesians lolz and especially Christians. Don’t know why. 🙂 )

5. He shouldn’t even be jailed in the first place. All news agencies from CNN, BBC, Reuters, Channel news Asia, StraitsTimes, JarkartaGlobe ( which sometimes post biased articles against Ahok ) agree that hardline Muslims took his comment out of context and therefore press the corrupt government to condemn him to jail, even execution. They agree even more strongly that those allegations are purely evidence-less claims made by a bunch of infuriated folks who are racist towards Chinese and Christians. It’s nuts how they always preach that they’re a bunch of peaceful folks yet cry out for blood and hate everyone that’s not Muslim.

6. There’s not even enough objective evidence to support the claim that he has ‘blasphemed’ Islam. It’s all in the name of hate.

7. He’s pretty awesome.

The above are my opinions, and disclaimer: they’re probably not the opinions of the news agencies stated, although I’ve gotten inspiration from the implied message of their articles. However, judging from their language used in the articles, they obviously see that there’s no basis to condemn Ahok.

All in all, this case is a lesson for us all. Not just Indonesians, but every country in the world: how human rights are practically non-existent even though human rights organizations claim that they’re actually doing something, that whatever you say there’s always that guy who will take your comments a bit to the extreme, and how much more we need to stand up against. injustice. Ahok’s legacy will live on.

God’s justice will prevail. He will see it through till the end.
Features Image courtesy of Jarkarta Post

Fake news. It’s all the rage.

The term ‘fake news’ hasn’t popped up until not too long ago, scarcely before the US presidential elections. The usage of this term has been used widely —perhaps, a little too widely until it has meshed into our vocabulary. Below is a prime example of what a legitimate fake news is.

Recently, senior pastor of City Harvest Church (CHC), Pastor Kong Hee, posted a video of him praying over thousands of bottles of anointing oil, saying a prayer of blessing, and then announced that he’s giving it out to all CHC members for FREE. Unfortunately, he received yet another backlash from the mainstream media, for giving out, wait for it —anointing oil. 

Yes, the media has strike again. We are now being hated and spoken against (indirectly, if THEY did so directly, it’ll be deemed as sedition) by the media for being Christian. I mean, since when has it been such a disgrace to be Christian and practice our beliefs?

We can’t sit idly around and let them attack us! They can have their right to free speech, but so can I. Hence, here’s my take on reading the article (or diary entry) posted by journalists on behalf of Yahoo Singapore, The Independent and mothership.sg.

Preposterous and inaccurate facts presented in that article by Yahoo, The Independent, and Mothership.sg. These supposedly credible news agencies are supposed to present the truth as it is and not insert their opinion into it!They didn’t clarify with the church (or as they like to call us ‘the guilty party; convicts; criminals’) neither did they even bother to cross-refer to other CREDIBLE sources. And I rephrase, “If you are interested in getting your hands on a bottle of olive oil blessed by Pastor Kong Hee, make sure to contact your nearest City Harvest Church representative authorized reseller.” (By the way, the sentence before is corrected by Grammerly. This is the real sentence: If you are interested to get your hands on a bottle of olive oil blessed by Pastor Kong Hee, make sure to contact your nearest City Harvest Church representative authorised reseller.)I beg your pardon, but in case anyone has misread the statement from the church, it was never for sale.

This is a prime example of FAKE news—alternative facts so twisted that they’re far beyond the truth (and no, I’m not talking about mainstream media claiming that fake news is anything hitting too close to Trump’s home base and anything conflicting with Republican ‘dogs’ conservative ideologies). This influx of fake news presented by self-righteous bigots (or journalists) must be stopped!

Here are five steps on how to quickly identify fake news:

1. Too much opinion. You know the article’s gonna be a mess when there’s way too much mumbo jumbo going on in the first and last paragraph. Unless it’s part of the opinion section.

2. Too little objective facts. The journalist did not cross-refer to credible sources/ they did not cross-refer to any other source at all.

3. The journalist did not interview the party that they’re publicly shaming. Come on, at least get a clear explanation from the other party before reporting as you wish.

4. The article has no sense of direction. Too much of branching out to sub-related topics/branching out to topics that are not even related to the main theme of the article.

5. Personally attacking the party instead of discussing the issue at hand. A number 1 indicator that the article is presenting alternative facts/ fake news.

In the advent of social media, news spread like forest fires. We receive updates with the tap of our fingers, and this great surge in information and news can cause confusion. What one person or source is saying may not match up to another. Actually, fake news isn’t something we should be worried or suspicious about, as long as the article has correct grammar (not found in Yahoo, The Independent, and mothership.sg) and objective views, you’re pretty much safe. As responsible and intelligent beings, we ought to know better when commenting online — when is the time to exercise our right to free speech, and when is the time not to overstep on people’s boundaries. Everyone is able to exercise their rights to freedom but remember: insulting or slandering other people based on untrue facts is never free speech or even freedom. Unless someone can tell me what the lawfully and politically correct definition of free speech is (without reference to the bible), I can’t accept these articles written by self-proclaimed ‘legitimate’ journalists.

Here are the websites which I quoted from:

https://sg.news.yahoo.com/best-kong-hee-moments-blessing-120312086.html

http://www.theindependent.sg/oil-prayed-over-by-kong-hee-went-on-sale-in-carousell-but-only-briefly/

http://mothership.sg/2017/03/kong-hee-prayed-over-so-much-oil-the-united-states-might-invade-him/