Wednesday, July 20, 2016

U.S. DEPARTMENT of JUSTICE TRANSCRIPT on MALAYSIA'S 1MDB and the FUNDING of the MOVIE "THE WOLF of WALL STREET" (July 20. 2016)

PLEASE STAND BY. PLEASE STAND BY. . PLEASE STAND BY. PLEASE STAND BY. 

PETER: HI, EVERYBODY, I'M PETER FROM THE OFFICE OF PUBLIC AFFAIRS. I WANTED TO GIVE YOU OUR TWO-MINUTE WARNING AND NOTICE WE HAVE VISUALS ON DISPLAY HERE AND ALSO IN YOUR PRESS PACKET. WE WILL HAVE THOSE ALONG WITH ALL THE COURT DOCUMENTS IN A -- ON OUR WEBSITE SO YOU CAN DOWNLOAD THEM. ANOTHER NOTE FOR THE COURT DOCUMENTS, THERE ARE MULTIPLE COURT DOCUMENTS BUT ALL OF THEM ARE ESSENTIALLY VERBATIM SO ONCE YOU SEE ONE, IT WILL HAVE ALL THE INFORMATION YOU NEED. WE JUST HAD TO FILE SEPARATE CHARGING DOCUMENTS FOR EACH ASSET THAT WE'RE SEEKING TO SEIZE. ALL OF THAT WILL BE AVAILABLE ON OUR WEBSITE. FOR TODAY'S PRESS CONFERENCE, THE ATTORNEY GENERAL, LORETTA E. LYNCH, WILL BE OUR FIRST SPEAKER. FOLLOWING HER REMARKS WE'LL HEAR FROM THE ASSISTANT ATTORNEY GENERAL, LESLIE CAUGHT WELD, U.S. ATTORNEY FOR THE DISTRICT OF SOUTH CAROLINA, ILENE DIRECTOR AND ANDREW MCCABE AND OUR FINAL SPEAKER WILL BE I.R.S. CRIMINAL INVESTIGATION CHIEF RICHARD WEBBER. SO AGAIN, OUR TWO-MINUTE WARNING. THANK YOU. 

ATTORNEY GENERAL LYNCH: GOOD MORNING, ALL. GOOD MORNING AND THANK YOU ALL FOR BEING HERE. BEFORE I BEGIN THE MORNING'S ANNOUNCEMENT, LET ME TAKE ONE MOMENT TO MENTION CAPTAIN ROBERT MELTON, A 17-YEAR VETERAN OF THE KANSAS CITY, KANSAS, POLICE DEPARTMENT SHOT AND KILLED IN THE LINE OF DUTY YESTERDAY WHILE RESPONDING TO A CALL ABOUT A DRIVE-BY SHOOTING. OUR HEARTS GO OUT TO THE CAPTAIN'S FAMILY AND HIS LOVED ONES AND TO ALL OF THOSE WHO ARE SUFFERING IN THIS TIME OF GRIEF. AND OF COURSE, OUR SUPPORT GOES OUT TO HIS COLLEAGUES ON THE KANSAS CITY POLICE DEPARTMENT. OUR COLLEAGUES AS WELL. AND THIS DEVASTATING LOSS IS YET ANOTHER REMINDER THAT OUR COURAGEOUS OFFICERS PUT THEIR LIVES ON THE LINE EVERY DAY IN ORDER TO SERVE THE PUBLIC, IN ORDER TO SERVE US. NOT ONLY IN THE TIMES OF HEIGHTENED TENSIONS IN WHICH WE FIND OURSELVES OR DURING AMBUSH SCENARIOS, AS TRAGIC AS THOSE ARE, BUT ALL DAY AND EVERY DAY. AND THE DEPARTMENT OF JUSTICE IS COMMITTED TO DOING ALL THAT WE CAN TO SUPPORT OUR OFFICERS AT EVERY LEVEL AND TO KEEP THEM SAFE FROM HARM AND WE WILL CONTINUE TO ADVANCE THAT WORK AND TO KEEP THAT PROMISE EVEN AS WE MOURN THE LOSS OF YET ANOTHER GUARDIAN, ANOTHER COLLEAGUE, ANOTHER FRIEND. NOW, FOR TODAY'S ANNOUNCEMENT, I'M JOINED TODAY BY ASSISTANT ATTORNEY GENERAL FOR THE CRIMINAL DIVISION LESLIE CALDWELL AND JOINED BY THE UNITED STATES ATTORNEY FOR THE CENTRAL DISTRICT OF KEEFE ILENE DECKER AND ANDREW MCCABE AND MR. WEBBER, CHIEF OF THE INVESTIGATIVE DEPARTMENT AT THE REVENUE SERVICE AND WE'RE HERE TO ANNOUNCE A SIGNIFICANT STEP IN OUR ONGOING WORK TO COMBAT GLOBAL CORRUPTION AND ENSURE THAT THE UNITED STATES OFFERS NO SAFE HAVEN TO THOSE WHO ILLEGALLY USE PUBLIC FUNDS FOR PRIVATE GAIN. AND TODAY THE DEPARTMENT OF JUSTICE HAS FILED A CIVIL COMPLAINT SEEKING TO FORFEIT AND RECOVER MORE THAN $1 BILLION IN ASSETS ASSOCIATED WITH AN INTERNATIONAL CONSPIRACY TO LAUNDER FUNDS STOLEN FROM ONE MALAYSIA DEVELOPMENT OR ONE MDB, A COMPANY WHOLLY OWNED BY THE GOVERNMENT OF MALAYSIA. THE $1 BILLION IN ASSETS THAT WE'RE DISCUSSING TODAY ARE JUST A PORTION OF THE MORE THAN $3 BILLION THAT WAS STOLEN FROM ONE M.D.B. AND LAUNDERED TO AMERICAN INSTITUTIONS IN VIOLATION OF THE UNITED STATES LAW. ONE M.D.B. WAS CREATED TO PROMOTE ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT THROUGH INTERNATIONAL PARTNERSHIPS AND FOREIGN DIRECT INVESTMENT WITH THE ULTIMATE GOAL OF IMPROVING THE WELL-BEING OF THE MALAYSIAN PEOPLE. UNFORTUNATELY AND TRAGICALLY, A NUMBER OF CORRUPT OFFICIALS TREATED THIS PUBLIC TRUST AS A PERSONAL BANK ACCOUNT. OUR COMPLAINT EDGED FROM 2001 TO 2015 THESE OFFICIALS AND ASSOCIATES CONSPIED TO MISAPPROPRIATE AND LAUNDER BILLIONS OF DOLLARS FROM 1 MDB. THEY LAUNDERED THEIR FUNDS THROUGH OPAQUE ACTIONS IN BANK ACCOUNTS IN COUNTRIES AROUND THE WORLD INCLUDING SWITZERLAND, SINGAPORE AND THE UNITED STATES. NOW, THE FUNDS WERE THEN USED TO PURCHASE A RANGE OF ASSETS FOR THE CONSPIRATORS AND THEIR RELATIVES AND ASSOCIATES INCLUDING HIGH END RELIES IN NEW YORK AND LOS ANGELES AND ART YORKS BY MONET AND A JET AIRCRAFT. TODAY'S CASE IS THE LARGEST SINGLE ACTION EVER BROUGHT BY THE KLEPTOCRACY ASSET INITIATIVE WHICH WAS ESTABLISHED BY ATTORNEY GENERAL ERIC HOLDER IN 2010 TO FORFEIT THE PROCEEDS OF FOREIGN OFFICIAL CORRUPTION AND WERE POSSIBLE TO USE THE RECOVERED ASSETS TO BENEFIT THE PEOPLE HARMED. THIS CASE AND THE KLEPTOCRACY INITIATIVE AS A WHOLE SHOULD SERVE AS A SIGN OF OUR FIRM COMMITMENT TO FIGHTING INTERNATIONAL CORRUPTION. AND IT SHOULD ALSO SEND A SIGNAL THAT THE DEPARTMENT OF JUSTICE IS DETERMINED TO PREVENT THE AMERICAN FINANCIAL SYSTEM TO BE USED AS A CONDUIT FOR CORRUPTION AND SHOULD MAKE CLEAR TO CORRUPT OFFICIALS AROUND THE WORLD THAT WE WILL BE RELENTLESS IN OUR EFFORTS TO DENY THEM THE PROCEEDS OF THEIR CRIMES. A CASE LIKE THIS TAKES A TEAM AND LET ME THANK THE TEAM OF PROSECUTORS AND PARALLELS FROM THE CRIMINAL DIVISIONS AND ASSET FORFEITING SECTION AND THE UNITED STATES ATTORNEY'S OFFICE FOR THE CENTRAL DISTRICT OF CALIFORNIA WHO HAVE WORKED TIRELESSLY ON THIS MATTER AND ALSO WANT TO THANK THE AGENTS FROM THE F.B.I.'S INTERNATIONAL CORRUPTION UNIT AND THE I.R.S. CRIMINAL INVESTIGATIONS DIVISION WHO ASSISTED THEM IN THIS CASE. I'M ALSO GRATEFUL TO THE CRIMINAL OF INTERNATIONAL AFFAIRS FOR THEIR VITAL CONTRIBUTIONS. AT THIS TIME I'LL TURN THE PODIUM OVER TO ASSISTANT ATTORNEY GENERAL LESLIE CALDWELL WHO WILL SPEAK ABOUT TODAY'S FILING. THANK YOU. 

MS. CALDWELL: THANK YOU, ATTORNEY GENERAL LYNCH. THIS IS A SIGNIFICANT MILESTONE IN THE DEPARTMENT'S KLEPTOCRACY INITIATIVE AND OUR GLOBAL FIGHT DEFENSE CORRUPTION. THE COMPLAINT FILED TODAY REALLY GOES IN GREAT DETAIL ABOUT THE COMPLEX WEB OF TRANSACTIONS THESE CO-CONSPIRATORS USED TO LAUNDER BILLIONS OF DOLLARS THEY STOLE FROM THE PEOPLE OF MALAYSIA. SEVERAL SPEAKERS WILL TALK ABOUT DIFFERENT ASPECTS OF THE CASE. WHAT I'D LIKE TO FOCUS ON NOW IS ALLEGATIONS IN THE COMPLAINT INVOLVING TWO BOND OFFERINGS IN 2012 THROUGH WHICH 1MDB RAISED SOME OF THE MONEY SIPHONED OFF BY THE CORRUPT OFFICIALS AND THEIR ASSOCIATES. THE STATED PURPOSE OF THE BOND OFFERINGS WAS TO ALLOW 1MDB TO RAISE MONEY TO INVEST IN VARIOUS ENERGY ASSETS OF THE MALAYSIAN GOVERNMENT AND PEOPLE. ALMOST IMMEDIATELY AFTER RECEIVING THE PROCEEDS OF THE TWO BOND ISSUES, ROUGHLY 40% OF THE MONEY THAT WAS RAISED WHICH WAS ABOUT $1.37 BILLION, THE 40% WAS THE $1.37 BILLION, WAS TRANSFERRED OUT OF 1MDB'S ACCOUNTS AND TRANSFERRED INTO A SWISS BANK ACCOUNT THAT WAS IN THE NAME OF A SHELL CORPORATION INCORPORATED IN THE BRITISH VIRGIN ISLANDS. THE COMPLAINT ALLEGES THAT THE NAME OF THAT SHELL COMPANY WAS CHOSEN BECAUSE IT SOUNDED LIKE THE NAME OF A LEGITIMATE COMPANY THAT WAS INVOLVED IN THE BOND OFFERING BUT IN FACT THE SWISS BANK ACCOUNT WAS CONTROLLED BY CORRUPT OFFICIALS AND ASSOCIATES. FROM SWITZERLAND THE CORRUPT OFFICIALS TRANSFERRED MONEY USING A SERIES OF TRANSACTIONS INVOLVING MORE SHELL COMPANIES AND BANK ACCOUNTS LOCATED ALL OVER THE GLOBE. EVENTUALLY MORE THAN $230 MILLION OF THAT MONEY FOUND ITS WAY IN THE ACCOUNT OF SHELL COMPANIES WHOSE BENEFICIAL OWNERS WAS A CLOSE RELATIVE OF A SENIOR 1MDB OFFICIAL AND THAT INDIVIDUAL USED MONEY TO BUY LUXURY REAL ESTATE IN THE UNITED STATES AND OTHER ASSETS AND ALSO USED THE MONEY TO FUND A MOTION PICTURE COMPANY CALLED RED GRANITE PICTURES WHO IN TURN USED MORE THAN $100 MILLION OF THAT MONEY TO FINANCE THE AWARD-WINNING 2013 FILM "THE WOLF OF WALL STREET." OF COURSE, NEITHER 1MDB OR THE MALAYSIAN PEOPLE SAW A PENNY OF PROFIT FROM THAT FILM OR THE OTHER ASSETS PURCHASED WITH FUNDS SIPHONED FROM 1MDB. INSTEAD THAT MONEY WENT TO RELATIVES AND ASSOCIATES OF THE CORRUPT OFFICIALS OF 1MDB AND OTHERS. BECAUSE THE ASSETS WERE LAUNDERED MONEY, THE FUTURE RIGHTS TO THAT FILM ARE SUBJECT TO THE FOREFITCH YOU ARE COMPLAINT FILED TODAY -- FOREFORFEITURE COMPLAINT FILED IN LOS ANGELES. THE ASSISTANT WE'VE GOTTEN FROM INTERNATIONAL PARTNERS HAS BEEN CRITICAL IN IDENTIFYING AND RESTRAINING ASSETS AND I THINK THAT INTERNATIONAL COOPERATION AND THE ACTION WE'RE TAKING TODAY, WHICH I SAID IS THE LARGEST ACTION TAKEN TO DATE IN CONNECTION WITH OUR KLEPTOCRACY INITIATIVE AND SHOULD SEND A MESSAGE TO CREPT CREATES AND CORRUPT -- KLEPTOCRATS AND OTHERS THAT THE UNITED STATES IS NOT A SAFE HAVEN FOR THEIR STOLEN MONEY AND CANNOT AVOID LAW ENFORCEMENT THROUGH SHELL COMPANIES, NOMINEE ENTITIES AND OTHER STRUCTURES THAT ARE ESSENTIALLY DESIGNED TO THWART LAW ENFORCEMENT. THE DEPARTMENT WILL CONTINUE TO TRACK AND CONTINUE TO SEIZE ASSETS THAT KLEPTOCRATS AND OTHER CORRUPT OFFICIALS STEAL FROM THE PEOPLE OF THEIR COUNTRIES. I NOW WOULD LIKE TO TURN IT OVER TO ILENE DECKER FROM THE U.S. ATTORNEY'S OFFICE IN CALIFORNIA. 

MS. DECKER: GOOD MORNING. I'M FROM THE DISTRICT ATTORNEY'S OFFICE BASED IN LOS ANGELES. IT WAS FILED BY PROSECUTORS IN MY OFFICE, THE COMPLAINT, IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT IN LOS ANGELES. ANOTHER PHASE OF THIS MONEY LAUNDERING SCHEME OCCURRED IN EARLY 2013 IN CONNECTION WITH A THIRD BOND OFFERING RANGED BY GOLDMAN SACHS INTERNATIONAL. IF THIS OFFERING, 1MDB RAISED APPROXIMATE $3 BILLION PURPORTEDLY TO FORM A JOINT VENTURE WITH AN ENTITY FROM ABU DAUBUE TO PROMOTE GROWTH IN MAKE LATER A AND ABU DAUB -- ABU DHABI AND INSTEAD OF USING MONEY, THE OFFICIALS MISAPPROPRIATED A SIGNIFICANT PORTION OF THE FUNDRAISED. IN FACT, ONLY DAYS AFTER THE INITIAL BOND SALE, APPROXIMATE $1.26 BILLION WAS DIVERTED FOR THE BENEFIT OF INDIVIDUALS ASSOCIATED WITH 1MDB. APPROXIMATE $137 MILLION OF THE PILFERED MONEY WAS SPENT TO PURCHASE WORKS OF ART, INCLUDING A $35 MILLION WORK BY CLAUDE MONET OF THE WORK IN VENICE AND IT WAS NOT FOR THE BENEFIT OF THE POPULATION BUT OBTAINED TO FURTHER ENHANCE THE LUXURY AND LAVISH LIFESTYLES OF THOSE STEALING MONEY FROM 1MDB. FUNDS DIVERTED FROM THE THIRD BOND OFFERING WERE ALSO TRACED TO THE PURCHASE OF AN INTEREST IN THE PARK LANE HOTEL IN NEW YORK. AND WE SEEK TO FORFEIT APPROXIMATE A QUARTER OF A BILLION DOLLARS INVESTED IN THAT LUXURY HOTEL. THE LAUNDERING OF THE PROCEEDS CONTINUED THROUGHOUT 2013 WITH AN ADDITIONAL $106 MILLION USED TO PURCHASE AN INTEREST IN E.M.I. MUSIC PUBLISHING. E.M.I. IS THE WORLD'S THIRD LARGEST MUSIC PUBLISHING COMPANY BY REVENUE AND THE COMPANY HAS THE RIGHTS TO PUBLISH APPROXIMATE $2.3 MILLION MUSICAL COMPOSITIONS INCLUDING A NUMBER OF TOP HITS FROM GRAMMY AWARD-WINNING ARTISTS. SINCE THE CONSPIRATORS PURCHASED THENS IN E.M.I. IT WAS THEY AND NOT THE CITIZENS OF MALAYSIA WHO EARN MONEY EVERY TIME THOSE SONGS WERE PERFORMED PUBLICLY, RECORDED OR DOWNLOADED. IN SEEKING TO SEIZE THESE FORFEITED ITEMS THE DEPARTMENT OF JUSTICE IS SENDING A MESSAGE WE WILL NOT ALLOW THE UNITED STATES TO BECOME A PLAYGROUND FOR THE CORRUPT AND THAT WE WILL NOT ALLOW IT TO BE A PLATFORM FOR MONEY LAUNDERING OR A PLACE TO HIDE AND INVEST IN STOLEN RICHES. THANK YOU VERY MUCH. NOW I'LL TURN THE PODIUM OVER TO ANDREW MCCABE. 

MR. MCCABE: GOOD MORNING. SO I'LL WALK YOU THROUGH THE DETAILS OF ONE OF THE ADDITIONAL SCHEMES THAT HAVE BEEN OUTLINED IN TODAY'S COMPLAINT. AS AALLEGED IN THE COMPLAINT NOT LONG AFTER 1MDB WAS ESTABLISHED IN 2009 CORRUPT OFFICIALS AT 1MDB AND THEIR ASSOCIATES BEGAN A SOPHISTICATED SCHEME TO ENRICH THEMSELVES. IN THE FIRST TWO YEARS OF THEIR EXISTENCE, ALMOST $1 BILLION WAS TRANSFERRED OUT OF 1MDB TO BANK ACCOUNTS IN SHELL CORPORATIONS AND THEY WERE CONTROLLED BY ASSOCIATES OF CORRUPT 1MDB OFFICIALS. THE FUND WERE STOLEN UNDER THE PRETENSE OF HAVING 1MDB INVEST IN AN OIL EXPLORATION JOINT VENTURE WITH A FOREIGN PARTNER. ON PAPER, THE $1 BILLION WAS TO BE 1MDB'S INVESTMENT IN WHAT PURPORTED TO BE NATIONAL RESOURCE RIGHTS. BUT THIS WASN'T A LEGITIMATE INVESTMENT FOR 1MDB OR THE MALAYSIAN PEOPLE. INSTEAD, THE FUNDS TRANSFERRED TO THE SHELL COMPANIES WERE USED TO THE PERSONAL ENRICHMENT OF THE CORRUPT OFFICIALS AND THEIR ASSOCIATES. THEY USED THE MONEY TO PAY GAMBLING DEBTS AT LAS VEGAS CASINOS, THEY RENTED LUXURY YACHTS, THEY HIRED A INTERIOR DECORATOR IN LONDON AND SPENT MILLIONS ON PROPERTY, SOME OF WHICH IS SUBJECT TO SEIZURE AND FOREFITCH YOU'RE -- FORFEIT YOU ARE. AMONG THE PURCHASES WAS A JET FOR THE PURCHASE PRICE OF $35 MILLION. SO WHY DOES THIS MATTER SO MUCH TO US? CERTAINLY THERE'S A LOT GOING ON IN THE WORLD RIGHT NOW, TERRORIST ATTACKS, VIOLENT CRIME AND SERIOUS THREATS TO AMERICAN CITIZENS AND PEOPLE AROUND THE WORLD. WHY DOES THE CORRUPTION CASE HALFWAY RAN THE WORLD MATTERO SO MUCH TO US HERE TODAY? WELL, I'LL TELL YOU FOR A FEW REASONS. FIRST, BECAUSE SOME OF THE PROFITS OF THESE SCHEMES WERE INVESTED IN THE UNITED STATES. AND WHEN CORRUPT OFFICIALS BRING THEIR ILL-GOTTEN GAINS TO THE UNITED STATES, THEY ALSO BRING WITH THEM THEIR CORRUPT PRACTICES AND DISREGARD FOR THE RULE OF LAW AND THAT PRESENTS A THREAT TO OUR ECONOMY AND IMPACTS TRADE AND INVESTMENT AND FUELS THE GROWTH OF CRIMINAL ENTERPRISES AND UNDERMINES OUR FAIR DEMOCRATIC PROCESSES. SECOND, BECAUSE THE STABLE, HEALTHY DEMOCRACIES AROUND THE WORLD ARE THE CORNERSTONE OF GLOBAL SECURITY. THE MORE WE CAN DO TO HELP OUR INTERNATIONAL PARTNERS ESTABLISH AND MAINTAIN STABLE GOVERNMENTS, ACCOUNTABLE TO THE RULE OF LAW, THE MORE WE DO TO ENSURE U.S. NATIONAL SECURITY. AND FINALLY, WE DO IT BECAUSE THE F.B.I. AND THE DEPARTMENT OF JUSTICE AND OUR COLLEAGUES AND FEDERAL LAW ENFORCEMENT ARE UNIQUELY POSITIONED TO PROVIDE THE SORT OF ASSISTANCE. THE MALAYSIAN PEOPLE WERE DEFRAUDED ON AN ENORMOUS SCALE. ITS SCHEMES WHOSE TENTACLES REACHED AROUND THE WORLD. THIS CASE IS BEYOND THE SINGLE -- ANY SINGLE AGENCY'S ABILITY TO EFFECTIVELY INVESTIGATE. WE HAVE INVESTIGATORS AND PROSECUTORS WITH DEEP EXPERIENCE WORKING MATTERS LIKE THIS SO OUR INVOLVEMENT IS A NATURAL FIT. LAST YEAR WE ESTABLISHED THREE DEDICATED INTERNATIONAL CORRUPTION SQUADS BASED IN NEW YORK, LOS ANGELES, AND HERE IN WASHINGTON. THESE SQUADS INCLUDE AGENTS, ANALYSTS AND ACCOUNTANTS WHO ARE EXPERTS IN COMPLEX FINANCIAL SCHEMES. THESE SPECIALIZED TEAMS ARE SHOWING REAL RESULTS. THIS IS THE LARGEST KLEPTOCRACY SEIZURE IN U.S. HISTORY. WE HOPE THIS INVESTIGATION WILL SEND A MESSAGE TO CORRUPT OFFICIALS AROUND THE WORLD THAT NO PERSON, NO COMPANY, NO ORGANIZATION IS TOO BIG, TOO POWERFUL, OR TOO PROMINENT. NO ONE IS ABOVE OR BEYOND THE LAW. SO AT THIS POINT, I'D LIKE TO THANK A FEW OF OUR PARTNERS. FIRST, I'D LIKE TO THANK OUR F.B.I. LEGAL OFFICES, THESE TEAMS ARE STATIONED OVERSEAS TO COORDINATE GLOBAL INVESTIGATIONS LIKE THIS. AND PART OF THEIR JOB IS TO BUILD STRONG PARTNERSHIPS SO WE CAN WORK CLOSELY, QUICKLY AND EFFICIENTLY WITH OUR INTERNATIONAL PARTNERS ON CRIMINAL AND TERRORIST THREATS. I'D ALSO LIKE TO THANK OUR PARTNERS WITH THE I.R.S., THE LOS ANGELES U.S. ATTORNEY'S OFFICE, THE CRIMINAL DIVISION HERE AT THE DEPARTMENT OF JUSTICE, AND OF COURSE OUR AGENTS AND ANALYSTS IN THE F.B.I.'S NEW YORK AND LOS ANGELES FIELD OFFICES. THIS CASE IS ONGOING. CORRUPTION, UNFORTUNATELY, WILL NEVER BE ERADICATED BECAUSE, QUITE FRANKLY, GREED NEVER GOES AWAY. BUT WE ARE COMMITTED TO WORKING WITH OUR PARTNERS HERE AT HOME AND AROUND THE WORLD TO DO WHAT WE CAN TO STOP IT, TO ENSURE THE LEGITIMACY OF PUBLIC OFFICIALS AND TO CREATE A LEVEL PLAYING FIELD FOR ALL. NOW I'D LIKE TO INTRODUCE CHIEF RICHARD WEBBER OF THE I.R.S. CRIMINAL INVESTIGATION DIVISION. 

MR. WEBBER: THANK YOU, ON BEHALF OF THE I.R.S. CRIMINAL INVESTIGATION I'M PROUD TO STAND WITH THE ATTORNEY GENERAL TO ANNOUNCE THE SEIZURE OF SEVERAL REAL PROPERTIES AND ASSETS IN CONNECTION WITH THE INVESTIGATION. 1MDB WAS ORIGINALLY ESTABLISHED TO DRIVE STRATEGIC INITIATIVES FOR LONG TERM ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT OF MALAYSIA. INSTEAD, IT IS ALLEGED THAT MONEY WAS SIPHONED FROM THIS FUND FOR PERSONAL INVESTMENT, NOT FOR THE GOOD OF THE MALAYSIAN PEOPLE AND NOT FOR THE ACHIEVEMENT OF THEIR GOALS. THE CASE IS ANOTHER EXAMPLE OF THE ABILITY TO FOLLOW MONEY THROUGH COMPLEX MONEY LAUNDERING SCHEMES AND THE WEB OF OPAQUE TRANSACTIONS AND FRAUDULENT SHELL CORPORATIONS. IN OCTOBER OF 2015, MY L.A. FIELD OFFICE JOINED THE INVESTIGATION SPECIFICALLY FOCUSING ON RED GRANITE PICTURES. APPROXIMATE $238 MILLION WAS WIRED TO RED GRANITE CAPITAL IN SING TORE, AN ENTITY CONTROLLED BY OOMBINGS ZIZ. WIRE TRANSFERS TOTALING APPROXIMATE $64 MILLION WAS SENT FROM THE RED GRANITE CAPITAL ACCOUNT FOR AN ACCOUNT AT CITI NATIONAL BANK IN THE UNITED STATES, MAINTAINED BY RED GRANITE PICTURES, A PRODUCTION COMPANY ALSO OWNED BY AZIZ. THIS MONEY WAS USED TO FUND RED GRANITE PICTURES OPERATIONS INCLUDING THE PRODUCTION OF THE FILM "THE WOLF OF WALL STREET." ADDITIONALLY THE MISAPPROPRIATIONS WAS USED TO ACQUIRE $100 MILLION IN RELIES IN THE U.S. AND THE UNITED KINGDOM AND ELSEWHERE FOR THE BENEFIT OF AZIZ. INCLUDING IN THE LIST OF PROPERTIES, AND WE HAVE THE PROPERTIES OUTLINED IN THE CIVIL COMPLAINT IN VARIOUS DIAGRAMS BUT THE PROPERTIES INCLUDE A BEVERLY HILLS MANSION, CURRENTLY UNDER CONSTRUCTION, A PARK LAUREL CONDO IN NEW YORK CITY AND A TOWNHOUSE IN THE UNITED KINGDOM. FIGHTING WORLDWIDE CORRUPTION IS IN THE INTEREST OF THE UNITED STATES. CORRUPTION THREATENED GOOD GOVERNANCE, SUSTAINABILITY DEVELOPMENT AND THE DEMOCRATIC PROCESS AND FAIR BUSINESS PRACTICES. CORRUPTION ERODES TRUST IN GOVERNMENT AND PRIVATE INSTITUTIONS ALIKE AND UNDERMINES CONFIDENCE AND FAIRNESS OF FREE AND OPEN MARKETS AND IT BREEDS CONTEMPT FOR THE RULE OF LAW. THIS INVESTIGATION IS CONTINUING AND ONGOING. WE WILL NOT ALLOW THE MASSIVE AND BLATANT AVERSION OF BILLIONS OF DOLLARS FROM 1MDB AND THE ALLEGED LAUNDERING OF THOSE FUNDS THROUGH U.S. FINANCIAL INSTITUTIONS TO CONTINUE. THIS CASE REPRESENTS A MODEL FOR INTERNATIONAL COOPERATION IN SIGNIFICANT CROSS BORDER MONEY LAUNDERING MATTERS AND SENDS A MESSAGE THAT CRIMINALS CANNOT EVADE LAW ENFORCEMENT AUTHORITIES SIMPLY BY LAUNDERING MONEY THROUGH MULTIPLE JURISDICTIONS AND THROUGH A WEB OF SHELL CORPORATIONS. THANK YOU AND LET ME TURN THE PODIUM BACK TO THE ATTORNEY GENERAL. 

ATTORNEY GENERAL LYNCH: THANK YOU, CHIEF WEBER. WE'RE HAPPY TO TAKE QUESTIONS AT THIS TIME. 

REPORTER: IF THIS IS A FUND WHOLLY OWNED BY THE MALAYSIAN GOVERNMENT, AT WHAT POINT IF EVER DID THE MALAYSIAN GOVERNMENT SEND UP A FLAIR AND SAY WE THINK LOTS OF OUR MONEY IS BEING STOLEN? 

ATTORNEY GENERAL LYNCH: THE INVESTIGATION IS ONGOING SO WE'RE NOT ABLE TO PROVIDE A LOT OF DETAIL NOW AS TO WHEN WE BEGAN LOOKING INTO THIS OR WHAT PRECIPITATED THAT. WE CAN GET TO THE CONCLUSION OF THAT, WE MAY BE ABLE TO PROVIDE MORE INFORMATION ABOUT THAT BUT I'M NOT ABLE TO GO INTO THAT NOW. 

REPORTER: THE MALAYSIAN OFFICIALS WERE AWARE PROJECTS AREN'T BEING FUNDED THE WAY THEY WERE SUPPOSED TO AND THE MONEY BEING RAISED WAS NOT BEING DIVERTED CORRECTLY? 

ATTORNEY GENERAL LYNCH: CERTAINLY I CAN'T SPEAK TO THE STATE OF MIND OF THE INDIVIDUALS AT THAT TIME. I CERTAINLY THINK THAT AS WE'VE INDICATED, PEOPLE ARE AWARE OF OUR INVESTIGATION AND AWARE OF THE ISSUES THAT HAVE BEEN RAISED THERE AND CERTAINLY AS OUR HOPE AND GOAL AT THE CONCLUSION OF THIS FORFEITURE PROCESS TO RETURN THE FUNDS TO MALAYSIA, WHETHER THOSE INITIAL PROJECTS WILL STILL BE USED OR NOT WE DON'T KNOW BUT COULD BE USED BY THE GOVERNMENT FOR THE BENEFIT OF THE PEOPLE THERE. 

REPORTER: PRIME MINISTER NAJIB SET IT UP IN 2009 AND IS NOT NAMED IN THE COURT DOCUMENTS YOU FILED TODAY. WOULD YOU RULE OUT IMPLICATING HIM IN ANY OF YOUR FUTURE INVESTIGATIONS OR COURT FILINGS? 

ATTORNEY GENERAL LYNCH: WE DON'T HAVE A SPECIFIC COMMENT ON ANYONE WHO HASN'T BEEN NAMED SO FAR BECAUSE THIS IS A CIVIL FORFEITURE COMPLAINT AND WILL LOOK A LITTLE DIFFERENT FROM WHAT YOU'VE SEEN BEFORE. WE ESSENTIALLY ARE DESCRIBING THE TRACING OF THE ASSETS, THE USE OF THE FUND AND WHO WAS INVOLVED IN THE TRANSACTIONS THERE. SO WE'RE NOT COMMENTING ON ANYONE ELSE WHO MAY OR MAY NOT BE NAMED IN THE MATTER AT THIS TIME. 

REPORTER: WASN'T THERE SOME KIND OF AGREEMENT BETWEEN THE U.S. PROSECUTORS AND THE MALAYSIAN GOVERNMENT NOT TO NAME THE PRIME MINISTER. 

ATTORNEY GENERAL LYNCH: OUR AGREEMENT IS TO ONLY DRAFT THE COMPLAINT AS WE DO IN CIVIL FORFEITURE MATTERS AND IT'S A COMPLAINT AGAINST THE ACTUAL MONEY OR ASSETS AS OPPOSED TO AGAINST AN INDIVIDUAL. WE DON'T HAVE ANNOUNCEMENTS ON ANYONE NOT NAMED SO FAR. SO THIS WILL BE A COMPLAINT THAT SEEKS TO RESTRAIN AND FORFEIT THE SPECIFIC ASSETS MENTIONED. 

REPORTER: IF THERE ARE $3 BILLION MISAPPROPRIATED WHY ARE YOU SEEKING ON THE FORFEITURE OF $1 BILLION? 

ATTORNEY GENERAL LYNCH: YOU'LL SEE FROM THE COMPLAINT WE'VE BEEN ABLE TO TRACE APPROXIMATE $1 BILLION AS HAVING GONE THROUGH THE U.S. FINANCIAL SYSTEMS. AND THAT MONEY LAUNDERING ESSENTIALLY GIVES US THE JURISDICTION OVER THOSE ASSETS. WE'VE ALSO BEEN ABLE TO LOCATE SPECIFIC ASSETS IN THE U.S. AND OVERSEAS. AS ALSO WAS DESCRIBED, HOWEVER, AND IS OFTEN AS COMMON IN CORRUPTION CASES, A LOT OF THE FUNDS WERE DISSIPATED, PAYING GAMBLING EXPENSES, LIFESTYLE EXPENSES AND THINGS OF THAT NATURE IS A LOT OF THE FUNDS HAVE BEEN DISSIPATED BUT AS WE'VE NOTED, THIS INVESTIGATION IS ONGOING AND TO THE EXTENT THAT WE CAN IN FACT CLEARLY LOCATE OTHER ASSETS AND TRACE THEM, WE WOULD CONTINUE THE ACTIONS HERE. 

REPORTER: WHAT'S THE SPECIFIC PROCESS FOR "THE WOLF OF WALL STREET" IS PROBABLY THE MOST WELL KNOWN ASSET, HOW DO YOU GO ABOUT GETTING THE RIGHTS? IS IT THE WHOLE MOVIE OR JUST RED GATES? 

ATTORNEY GENERAL LYNCH: RED GRANITE. 

REPORTER: A PORTION OF THE ASSETS, HOW DO YOU COLLECT THE ROYALTIES? 

ATTORNEY GENERAL LYNCH: ESSENTIALLY WE'RE SEEKING TO RESTRAIN ANYTHING THAT RED GRANITE WOULD RECEIVE ON AN ONGOING BASIS FROM ROYALTIES OR ANY FEES COMING IN FROM THEIR INTEREST IN THAT FILM. 

REPORTER: WHAT ABOUT PAST ROYALTIES? 

ATTORNEY GENERAL LYNCH: I DON'T BELIEVE WE CAN. LET ME CHECK WITH LESLIE ON THAT. 

MS. CALDWELL: NO, I DON'T THINK WE'RE ABLE TO SEIZE ANYTHING RETROACTIVELY. 

ATTORNEY GENERAL LYNCH: GOING FORWARD, OF COURSE IT WOULD NOT BE THE ENTIRE PROCEEDS BUT WHAT RED GRANITE IS ENTITLED TO RECEIVE IS WHAT WE'RE SEEKING TO RESTRAIN. THEN I WAS COMING HERE AND I'LL GO BACK TO YOU. 

REPORTER: THANK BUT YOUR COMMENTS ABOUT CAPTAIN MELTON. WHAT DO YOU BELIEVE EXPLAINS THE SPIKE IN ATTACKS ON POLICE OFFICERS IN THIS COUNTRY? 

ATTORNEY GENERAL LYNCH: THAT IS CERTAINLY A VERY SERIOUS QUESTION AND I'M GLAD IT'S SOMETHING UNDER DISCUSSION TODAY. YOU KNOW, WE LOOK AT EVERY INCIDENT AND EVERY INSTANCE INDIVIDUALLY AND SEE A NUMBER OF DIFFERENT CAUSES, FOR EXAMPLE IN THE TRAGIC SITUATION YES, THIS BRAVE OFFICER WAS RESPONDING TO A DISTURBANCE AS SO MANY OFFICERS DO ON A DAILY BASIS. WE'VE SEEN WHERE OFFICERS WERE TARGETED AND AMBUSHED AND WE'RE SEEING IT AIMED FROM A NUMBER OF SOURCES AND IS THE RESPONSIBILITY OF EVERYBODY TO TAKE NOTE OF THIS AND BE AS SUPPORTIVE AS WE CAN OF LAW ENFORCEMENT IN THESE TIMES AND WE'RE CONTINUING TO DO THAT WITH SPECIFIC TRAINING FOCUSED ON ACTIVE SHOOTER SITUATIONS, FOR EXAMPLE, DEESCALATION SO WHEN OFFICERS FIND THEMSELVES IN SITUATIONS WE'VE BEEN ABLE TO GIVE THEM WHAT WE CAN FOR DEAL WITH THESE SITUATIONS. 

REPORTER: AS A FOLLOW-UP, WHAT DO YOU THINK HAS CREATED A CULTURE WHERE POLICE OFFICERS SEEM TO BE ALMOST LIKE AN OPEN SEASON ON THESE INDIVIDUALS? 

ATTORNEY GENERAL LYNCH: LAW ENFORCEMENT IS FEELING UNDER SIEGE BECAUSE OF THESE INCIDENTS AND IT'S TRAGIC. MANY OF THE EFFORTS THE DEPARTMENT IS ENGAGED IN DATE BACK TO SEVERAL YEARS WHEN WE SAW POLICE OFFICERS COME UNDER ATTACK AS WELL AS FEDERAL AGENTS COME UNDER ATTACK IN THE BEGINNING OF THE ADMINISTRATION AND THE DEPARTMENT SET UP A NUMBER OF GROUPS OF OFFICER SAFETY AND WELLNESS GROUP IN 2011 TO START WORKING ON THESE ISSUES AND FOCUS ON PROVIDING TRAINING AND SUPPORT TO ADDITIONAL OFFICERS TO SUPPORT OFFICERS IN THE FIELD. IT'S WORTH NOTING THIS IS AN ISSUE LAW ENFORCEMENT HAS FACED BECAUSE IT'S A DANGEROUS PROFESSION AND THEY'VE CONTINUALLY BORNE THIS WEIGHT AND CERTAINLY WE WANT TO HIGHLIGHT THE ISSUES TODAY, USE THEM TO START A CONVERSATION BUT LET'S NOT FORGET OUR BRAVE MEN AND WOMEN IN LAW ENFORCEMENT HAVE BEEN ENGAGED IN A INHERENTLY DANGEROUS UNDERTAKING. I'M MOVING OVER HERE AND THEN I'LL COME BACK TO THIS GENTLEMAN. 

REPORTER: TWO QUESTIONS FOR YOU, ATTORNEY GENERAL, THE DEPARTMENT OF JUSTICE MOVED REALLY QUICKLY TO OPEN UP THE CIVIL RIGHTS INVESTIGATION INTO THE DEATH OF ALTON STERLING BUT IN THE DEATH OF CASTILLE YOU'RE PLAYING A SUPPORTIVE ROLE AND AFTER SEEING THE VIDEO, CAN YOU EXPLAIN TO LAY PEOPLE HOW YOU DECIDE TO OPEN UP A FEDERAL INVESTIGATION INTO AN OFFICER INVOLVED SHOOTING? 

ATTORNEY GENERAL LYNCH: SURELY. AND CERTAINLY AS YOU'RE RIGHT, BOTH OF THOSE INCIDENTS, ALSO A TRAGIC LOSS OF LIFE WERE VERY VISIBLE BECAUSE OF VIDEO. IN THE CASE INVOLVING MR. STERLING'S LOSS OF LIFE IN LOUISIANA, THAT WAS A MATTER WHERE WE WERE REQUESTED TO MOVE IN EARLIER WE ALWAYS CONSULT WITH LOCAL LAW ENFORCEMENT AND I BELIEVE THE DISTRICT ATTORNEY'S OFFICE IN BATON ROUGE THE FEDERAL GOVERNMENT GOVERNMENT MOVES FIRST IN A STATE THAT MAY PRESHREWD THE ACTION BECAUSE OF LAWS. WE WAIT UNTIL THE LOCAL PROSECUTORS HANDLED MATTERS. WHERE WE'RE ASKED TO COME IN WE TAKE THEM UNDER CONSIDERATION AND IF WE FEEL AGAIN WE'RE ABLE TO DO SO AS IN BATON ROUGE, WE WILL. SO BATON ROUGE IS A BIT OF AN UNUSUAL SITUATION AGAIN BECAUSE OF THE RECUSAL. 

REPORTER: THE SECOND YES IS ABOUT LAST WEEK'S RULING, THE F.B.I. MAY NOT WANT TO WEIGH IN. HOW MUCH MORE DIFFICULT IS YOUR JOB NOW AFTER THAT DECISION SO PEOPLE HAVE SUGGESTED AN INABILITY TO ACCESS DATA STORED OUTSIDE THE UNITED STATES IS EVEN A GREATER THREAT THAN PERHAPS THE SO-CALLED GOING DARK OR ENCRYPTION PROBLEM. 

ATTORNEY GENERAL LYNCH: CERTAINLY IT RAISES SERIOUS CONCERNS FOR US AS EVIDENCED IN OUR VIEWS IN THE CASE BEFORE THE DECISION CAME DOWN. WE'RE STILL LOOKING AT THAT DECISION AND DETERMINING WHAT'S THE NEXT STEPS ARE. WE ALSO WORK VERY CLOSELY WITH OUR FORMER COUNTERPARTS IN THE EUROPEAN UNION, FOR EXAMPLE, AND ARE VERY COMMITTED TO WORKING WITH THEM TO COME UP WITH AGREEMENTS WHERE WE CAN SHARE LAW ENFORCEMENT OR EVEN COMMERCIAL DATA SAFELY AND SECURELY AND PROTECT PRIVACY. IT IS A DECISION THAT MAY HAVE SOME IMPACT ON THAT AND WE'RE LOOKING AT THE RAMIFICATIONS OF THAT. TO THIS GENTLEMAN. YOU'RE NEXT. 

REPORTER: DO YOU KNOW IF ANY FINANCIAL INSTITUTIONS LIKE GOLDMAN SACHS WERE AWARE OF THE MONEY LAUNDERING THAT WAS GOING ON, AND IS THAT SOMETHING YOU PLAN TO INVESTIGATE GOING FORWARD? 

ATTORNEY GENERAL LYNCH: I CAN TELL YOU AGAIN, WE'RE FOCUSING NOW ON THE TRACING OF THE ASSETS. LESLIE, YOU WANT TO ADD ANYTHING ON ANY OF THE ENTITIES THERE? 

MS. CALDWELL: SO I CAN'T COMMENT ON THE INVESTIGATION THAT WE'VE DONE THUS FAR BUT YOU CAN SEE IN THE COMPLAINT THAT GOLDMAN SACHS AND A NUMBER OF OTHER INSTITUTIONS WERE INVOLVED IN VARIOUS ASPECTS OF THESE TRANSACTIONS. WE ARE CONTINUING TO INVESTIGATE AND WE'LL GO WHEREVER THAT EVIDENCE TAKES US. 

ATTORNEY GENERAL LYNCH: AND I PROMISED IN YOUNG LADY NEXT TO YOU. 

REPORTER: THE CASE DOES TARGET THE HEAD OF STATE OF A U.S. ALLY, WHAT EXTENT DID DIPLOMATIC CONCERNS PLAY A ROLE IN THE CASE OR WERE THERE ANY DISCUSSINGS WITH THE STATE DEPARTMENT ABOUT THIS AND TWO, ALSO, WHY NOT CHARGE THE PEOPLE THAT YOU NAMED IN THE FORFEITURE ACTION, WHY JUST BRING THE FORFEITURE ACTION FIRST? 

ATTORNEY GENERAL LYNCH: IT'S IMPORTANT THAT WHEN WE HAVE THE EVIDENCE WE CAN SEEK RESTRAINT OF ASSETS TO MOVE IN A FORFEITURE CASE TO IS HE CAN AVOID THEM BEING SOLD TO SOMEONE ELSE OR DISSIPATED OR TRANSFERED TO SOMEONE ELSE THAT WOULD MAKE IT HARDER FOR US TO RESTRAIN THOSE ASSETS. AS WITH ALL CASES EVEN WITH CIVIL FORFEITURE WE BRING THE ACTION WHEN THE FORCES COME TOGETHER AND WE FEEL WE HAVE SUFFICIENT CAUSE TO GET A JUDICIAL ORDER TO ALLOW FOR SEIZURE AND RESTRAINT OF ASSETS AND WHERE WE ARE HERE. WITH RESPECT TO GOVERNMENT OFFICIALS IN MALAYSIA, I DON'T HAVE A COMMENT ON ANYONE IN PARTICULAR EXCEPT TO SAY THAT MALAYSIA DOES CONTINUE TO BE AN ALLY OF OURS, PARTICULARLY IN COUNTERTERRORISM EFFORTS, BUT THIS EFFORT IS INTENDED TO -- AS IS THE ENTIRE KLEPTOCRACY INITIATIVE TO BENEFIT THAT COUNTRY BY ALLOWING THE RETURN OF ASSETS AT THE END OF THIS PROCESS TO THE GOVERNMENT OF MALAYSIA AND TO THE MALAYSIAN PEOPLE. 

REPORTER: YOU MET YESTERDAY WITH PRESIDENT OBAMA, THE DIRECTOR AND THE HOMELAND SECURITY DIRECTOR JOHNSON TO TALK ABOUT THE TENSIONS BETWEEN -- WITH POLICE KILLINGS. COULD I JUST GET YOUR READOUT OF THAT MEETING, WHAT WAS THE POINT OF HAVING THE MEETING, AND DO YOU FEEL THAT AT THIS POINT THERE'S ANYTHING MORE THAT THE ADMINISTRATION SHOULD BE DOING TO HELP TAMP DOWN THE TENSIONS THAT HAVE FLARED? 

ATTORNEY GENERAL LYNCH: THE PRESIDENT HIMSELF PREPARED THAT AFTER THE CONCLUSION AND I DON'T HAVE MORE THAN TO REITERATE THE PRESIDENT WANTED TO MEET WITH MYSELF AND SECRETARY JOHNSON TO REVIEW THE EFFORTS THIS ADMINISTRATION IS TAKING AND HAS TAKEN FOR SOME TIME TO SUPPORT LAW ENFORCEMENT IN THE FIELD. AS I MENTIONED EARLIER, THE EFFORTS OF THE DEPARTMENT OF JUSTICE HAS BEEN TAKING FOR SOME TIME INCLUDE THROUGH OUR GRANT MAKING PROCESS PROVIDING FOR THE HIRING AND RETENTION OF OFFICERS, ALSO THE TRAINING OF OFFICERS AS IS OFTEN REQUESTED BY OFFICERS IN THE FIELD IN AREAS LIKE ACTIVE SHOOTING, DEESCALATION, ALSO THE EFFORTS THAT WE UNDERTAKE THROUGH THE DEPARTMENT'S MANY FACETS, INCLUDING OUR CIVIL RIGHTS DIVISION AND OUR COPS OFFICE WHERE WE PROVIDE DIRECT PEER TO PEER SUPPORT AND WE OFTEN DO A LOT OF WORK MATCHING UP LAW ENFORCEMENT AGENCIES WHO HAVE DEALT WITH A PARTICULAR CRISIS OR SITUATION WITH OTHER DEPARTMENTS WHO SEE IT DEVELOPING IN THEIR AREA AND CONNECT POLICE CHIEFS TO POLICE CHIEFS TO HAVE THOSE DISCUSSIONS AND TRY AND BE A WAY OF EXPANDING THE DISCUSSION AND THE DIALOGUE AND TALK ABOUT THE THINGS THE DEPARTMENT HAS CONTINUED TO DO AND WE ALSO SPOKE ABOUT THE EFFORTS ONGOING THROUGH THE DEPARTMENT TO SUPPORT LAW ENFORCEMENT AND A CONSTRUCTIVE DIALOGUE ON THIS ISSUE. AS MEN OF YOU KNOW, I'VE BEEN ENGAGED IN A COMMUNITY POLICING TOUR FOR THE LAST YEAR AND HAVE VISITED 12 CITIES, FOCUSING ON THE ISSUE OF POLICE-COMMUNITY RELATIONS, HIGHLIGHTING CITIES THAT HAVE HAD A VERY DIFFICULT, VERY CHALLENGED RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN THE COMMUNITY AND LAW ENFORCEMENT, YET JURISDICTIONS THAT HAVE DONE THE HARD WORK AND ESTABLISHED A POSITIVE WORKING RELATIONSHIP, NOT PERFECT BECAUSE THERE'S NO PERFECT SITUATION, BUT A RELATIONSHIP WHERE THERE'S COMMUNITY INTERACTION WITH THE POLICE DEPARTMENT ON ISSUES OF TRAINING, ON ISSUES OF COMMUNITY INVOLVEMENT AND WHERE THERE IS DIRECT LAW ENFORCEMENT INVOLVEMENT IN GETTING TO KNOW THE COMMUNITY, PARTICULARLY BUSINESSES, YOUNG PEOPLE, AND BRINGING ALL THOSE VOICES TOGETHER. AND WE SPENT TIME TALKING ABOUT HOW WE CAN ADVANCE THOSE EFFORTS AND CONTINUE THOSE DISCUSSIONS WHICH MANY PEOPLE HAVE FOUND HELPFUL. I THINK IT'S SOMETHING THAT OTHER COMMUNITIES, I HOPE, WOULD ALSO FIND HELPFUL. I THINK THAT WE'RE AT A SITUATION WHERE PEOPLE ARE TRULY RECOGNIZING THAT THE TRAGEDIES THAT WE ARE SEEING ARE AFFECTING ALL OF US, THAT THE INDIVIDUALS WHO TALK ABOUT NOT FEELING SAFE ARE ALSO ECHOING WHAT OUR POLICE OFFICERS SAY WHEN THEY TALK ABOUT HOW THEY ARE NOT SAFE IN MANY SITUATIONS. AND THAT IS NOT A SITUATION FOR GROWTH AND DOESN'T BRING OUT THE BEST OF US. AND I THINK WE'RE ALSO IN A SITUATION WHERE PEOPLE REALLY WANT THINGS TO IMPROVE. THEY WANT EVERYONE TO GET HOME SAFELY. THEY WANT LAW ENFORCEMENT OFFICERS TO FEEL SUPPORTED AND THEY WANT TO BE ABLE TO CALL ON LAW ENFORCEMENT OFFICERS WHEN THEY ARE IN TROUBLE. THAT HAS ALWAYS BEEN AN ISSUE THAT CERTAINLY I HAVE SEEN IN MY OVER 20 YEARS IN LAW ENFORCEMENT. SO WE TALKED ABOUT WAYS IN WHICH TO ADVANCE THAT DISCUSSION. LET ME GO TO THE GENTLEMAN BEHIND YOU. 

REPORTER: THANKS. I JUST WANT TO FOLLOW UP ON THE QUESTION ABOUT PERFORM NAJIB. THE DESCRIPTION IN THE COMPLAINT OF THE MALAYSIAN OFFICIAL NUMBER ONE CERTAINLY SEEMS TO MATCH THE PRIME MINISTER'S BIOGRAPHY AND JOB DESCRIPTION. CAN YOU ELABORATE A LITTLE BIT ON THE LEGAL CONSIDERATIONS INVOLVED THAT PREVENT YOU OR THAT HELP YOU DECIDE NOT TO IDENTIFY THAT OFFICIAL AND OTHERS BY NAME WHEN SEVERAL OTHER PEOPLE WERE IDENTIFIED? 

ATTORNEY GENERAL LYNCH: I CAN SAY AS I'VE INDICATED BEFORE, WHEN WE HAVE A CIVIL COMPLAINT THAT TRACES ASSETS FROM ANY ENTITY THROUGH OTHERS AND INTO AN ASSET THAT WE'RE TRYING TO SEIZE, WE ESSENTIALLY ALLEGE WHAT WE NEED TO ALLEGE WITH SPECIFICITY IN ORDER TO OBTAIN THE LEGAL PROCESS THAT WE NEED TO OBTAIN. WE DON'T GO BEYOND THAT AND SO WE'RE NOT GOING BEYOND THAT IN THIS PARTICULAR COMPLAINT. 

REPORTER: DEPUTY DIRECTOR MCCABE, CAN I ASK YOU FOR YOUR ASSESSMENT TO CURRENT THREAT ON THE LAW ENFORCEMENT, SORT OF THE ENVIRONMENT, WHETHER QUANTITATIVELY, MORE THREATS TO LAW ENFORCEMENT, ARE YOU SEEING THAT? 

MR. MCCABE: WE TRACK THOSE NUMBERS CLOSELY AND I DON'T HAVE FIGURES TO SHARE WITH YOU TODAY, OBVIOUSLY NOT THE TOPIC OF OUR ANNOUNCEMENT. SUFFICE IT TO SAY THAT WE WORK VERY CLOSELY WITH OUR STATE AND LOCAL PARTNERS ACROSS THE COUNTRY, HAVE OVER 17,000 POLICE DEPARTMENTS IN THIS COUNTRY COVERING A BROAD, VAST, AND DIVERSE GEOGRAPHY, EVERY COMMUNITY IS A LITTLE BIT DIFFERENT, EACH PLACE POSES A DIFFERENT SET OF CHALLENGES AND DEMANDS. OUR CHALLENGE AS A FEDERAL AND NATIONAL LAW ENFORCEMENT ORGANIZATION IS TO PROVIDE SUPPORT AND ASSISTANCE AND GUIDANCE TO THOSE INDIVIDUAL LAW ENFORCEMENT AGENCIES TO THE GREATEST EXTENT THAT WE CAN. ONE OF THE WAYS THAT WE DO THAT IS WE WATCH FOR AND COMMUNICATE THREATS TO LAW ENFORCEMENT WHENEVER THEY COME TO OUR ATTENTION. WE CERTAINLY HAVE BEEN DOING THAT A LOT LATELY BUT BEYOND THAT I CAN'T GIVE YOU A CHARACTERIZATION. 

ATTORNEY GENERAL LYNCH: THANK YOU ALL. THANK YOU.

SOURCE: https://recapd.com/w-57b342

Thursday, June 23, 2016

Ramadan, Einstein, and a memory

by Azly Rahman



  
Yes indeed the Muslim kids in Malaysia today have it easy during the fasting month; their conversations with Time is as speedy as the speed of the ‘Internet of Things’ (the IoT). Time is compressed in this global village characterised by the rapidisation of things. Relativity is the key word here as we speak of how the mind, body, spirit, and soul respond to the demands of the worldview of Ramadan.
Technology to ease the suffering of hunger and thirst has today progressed in Einsteinian proportions, as how the advancements have been made since Einstein scribbled his grand theory of everything, of Relativity and Black Holes, Worm Holes, and quasars and pulsars and said, in his broken German-English accent to the world:
“Here it is, my proof of the existence of black holes. One day (yes, about a hundred year later in 2015) and after the release of James Cameron’s movie Interstellar, you’ll have the proper instruments and a couple of great scientists mainly from Columbia University in the NYC to build that machine to see black holes. One day you’ll see my calculations come alive.”
How fast technology has changed and our conversations with modernity and hyper-modernity in this post-post-post Age of Techno-humanism have advanced, too. For Ramadan, today’s Muslim kids can sit in an air-conditioned room the whole day and play video games and check their Internet phones every six minutes and go take a two-hour nap, and next go back to the AC room and next, it’s break fast - or Bukak Posa Time!
Time is compressed. Technology has a life of its own, ‘a technologically-deterministic being’ it has become, as Marx predicted and alluded to in his magnum opus with Friedrich Engels, ‘Das Kapital’.
I remember my childhood days of Ramadan when technology in my house in my gangsta Malay village in JB was still in its Neanderthal stage. One step backward and it was the Age of No Tech, Low Tech, and one more step behind was the Age of the Perak Man... the age of the early man who got lost trying to decide which way to go: Bota Kanan or Bota Kiri. He went bald thinking hard.
He died waiting at the junction, at the crossroad of human evolution. He gave up. Although he was said to be a determined man who lived for hundreds of years (we need to check his birth certificate though), he gave up right there near Changkat Jering, now a dangerous highway. He was a brave man - he walked from Africa alone and didn’t know where he was going and ended up in Perak. Hence the name Perak Man.
But that is another story of why he walked out of Africa. I saw him once in the National Museum in Kuala Lumpur, a few years back. He was lying in an enclosed glass bed, tired from the long walk to freedom. He was all bones. He was bald.
Twelve hours felt like twelve months
I remember my childhood Ramadan of the sixties. It was pure torture. It was a Buddhist experience of samsara. Of a life of suffering. Of denouncing water, food, and other childhood Earthly pleasures. Although the suffering was about twelve hours, it felt like twelve months of dying, of the experience of the Perak man’s marathon solo-walking. Herein lies Einstein’s Relativity.
I had no iPhone nor iPad to play with, no PlayStation Seventeen to play games that have me shoot people. no blasting high-fi air-conditioning machine to ease the cells in my body and to freeze them pleasurably so that they would not wilt like raisins in the sun, as how Langston Hughes said about the self in his poem ‘Dreams’.
And I didn’t have 700 channels of junk on TV to help me escape the reality of suffering and to bring me to this Hollywood or Bollywood nirvana.
None of these I had. Nor was I as a kid fasting the full swing of 30-day delight as strong as our man, the Perak man. Every day of the journey, I felt my body slowly getting weak and turning into that Malay pancake called ‘lempeng’; a sorry state of beingness with the feel that by the Time the bilal hit the ‘kentong’ (sounding ‘tong... tong... tong...) or that bamboo ‘break fast announcement instrument from the kampong masjid yonder’ and next, by the time I heard the imam clearing his throat at the microphone like Matt Monroe or Louis Armstrong, ready to azan or ‘bang’ (not banging people’s head, mind you... but ‘bang’ means calling for the maghrib prayer - signifying the end of suffering,) and lastly... by the time she announced, “Lekas, boleh berbuka kita... orang dah bang tu...” (Let us now break our fast as the imam has called for prayer - by the Time all these happened, I thought I had already died, ready to be reincarnated the next day for another round of the hunger game.
So - it seems like - in Ramadan death cometh daily. The madman Mansur Al-Hallaj said that, too, running around the street yelling, “Ana al Haq... Ana al Haq... I am the Truth... I am the Truth”.
And then I would be alive again. Time. Time. Time. Relative is Time.
As the Quranic verses go: “Time. Verily, Man is in a state of Loss and Utter Despair. Except those who do Good and Keeps the faith and remind others to do Good.” In other words: To promote peace and to keep peace and to build peace, after making peace with the self.
So - with no AC, how did I ease the suffering? Here is what I did daily. The tempayan was my friend, I’d go to the bathroom and climb into the huge earthen-ware pot, turn on the tap, water would flow through the mouldy green hose, the tempayan/pot would fill up to the brim, and I’d be sitting in there as cool as the Perak Man in the Pahang River. Cooling myself with water coming to the level of my neck.
Liiikkk kau buat apa lama lama dalam bilik air tu, nak... Dah dekat sejam.
My mother would call out after an hour of wondering if I had drowned in the gigantic pot and died and perhaps transported to Africa and walked with the Perak man and get confused like him at the junction of Bota Kanan or Bota Kiri.
Lik mandi mak... sekejap lagi habis. Nak sabun badan ni. (I am bathing, mother. Now is the soap-ing part...)”
Ultimate goal is the finishing line
I was happy for that Einsteinian hour in that day on the month of extreme test of spiritual endurance. For about twelve hours daily, I was both the Perak man and Siddharta Gautama or the ‘Buddha Matrieya’, wandering like Moses in an exodus for 40 years in the desert of my hyper-consciousness, in this Hunger Game called fasting - a game whose ultimate goal is the finishing line... to still be alive to hear the ‘tong... tong... tong...” sound of the masjid’s kentong. Mind-body-spirit game.
I suppose Einstein would agree. Life is not about finding happiness. It is about evading pain. Not about suffering. But to find victory in the battle within. The jihad within - and only within. And that jihad is Love and nothing else. In memory of the greatest Love - my mother.
Today, sixteen hours of my journey of the Perak man, in the blazing saddle heat of the New York Indian Summer Ramadan... I have felt nothing. I only eat one simple meal a day. A dead simple minimalist meal.
Thank you to the memory of the Perak man. And of course the tempayan, the huge pot in the bathroom. And the sound of the tong tong tong... I could still hear - from more than a thousand miles away!

DR AZLY RAHMAN grew up in a village in Johor Baru, Malaysia and holds a Columbia University (New York City) doctorate in International Education Development and Masters degrees in the fields of Education, International Affairs, Peace Studies and Communication. He is pursuing his fifth Masters in Fine Arts, specialising in Fiction and Creative Non-Fiction Writing. He has taught more than 50 courses in six different departments and has written more than 350 analyses/essays on Malaysia. His 25 years of teaching experience in Malaysia and the United States spans over a wide range of subjects, from elementary to graduate education. He has edited and authored six books; Multiethnic Malaysia: Past, Present, Future (2009), Thesis on Cyberjaya: Hegemony and Utopianism in a Southeast Asian State (2012), The Allah Controversy and Other Essays on Malaysian Hypermodernity (2013), Dark Spring: Essays on the Ideological Roots of Malaysia's General Elections-13 (2013), a first Malay publication Kalimah Allah Milik Siapa?: Renungan dan Nukilan Tentang Malaysia di Era Pancaroba (2014), and Controlled Chaos: Essays on Mahathirism, Multimedia Super Corridor and Malaysia’s ‘New Politics’ (2014). He currently resides in the United States where he teaches courses in Education, Philosophy, Cultural Studies, Political Science, and American Studies. His forthcoming book, One Malaysia, under God, Bipolar, a joint project between Gerakbudaya and World Wise Books of New Jersey, USA, is his seventh compilation of essays on Malaysian Cultural, Creative, and Critical Studies. He is currently working on his eighth book, on Gifted and Talented Education in Malaysia, honouring a prominent educator. Twitterblog

Friday, June 17, 2016

The Orlando Shooting and Malay-Muslim Gays, Part 1

by azly rahman 



The Orlando shooting that took the lives of 49 innocent people and injured more than 50 in a bar brought a sense of deep sunken-ness in my heart; I was grieving inside. Disagreement over one’s lifestyle choice should not lead one to take the lives of others. Only a bad religion would urge such a diabolical jihad. Grief brought me to my childhood memories and into my teen years at a high school I fondly call Bauxite High in Kuantan, Pahang in Malaysia.
My thought was: how could one commit mass murder - just like that? As if I have not understood well the complexity of psychosis and mental illness emblematic of this society called America - a society, as I have always spoken about in my lectures on Globalisation and Human Consequences, always a work in progress and in experimentation mode as a republic that chose, wisely, to keep Religion and the State separate.
A society that continues to struggle with definitions such as of equality, democracy, and justice.
God and King were buried with the installation of General Washington as the first president of the republic called America. Yes, America was named after the mapmaker Amerigo Vespucci who prepared explorers in the 15th century court of King Ferdinand of Spain to seek for newer worlds and to colonise them and subjugate the less powerful human beings.
With ships such as NinaPinta, and Santa Maria, the Italian explorer Cristoforo Colombo or Christopher Columbus was sent to search for ‘India’.
A complex story of America emerged ever since - a story of globalisation in ancient times - globalisation of 500 years ago. In the story of America lies episodes of happiness, victory, madness, sickness, death, and mental derangement leading to a hundred over wars from the arrival of Columbus to the last few months to the departure of America’s first black president well-versed in the principles of democracy as well as demagoguery.
More stories are emerging of the shooter, including a report that Omar Matten was a ‘closet gay’ and could not come to terms with the complexity of the difficult evolutionary stages of his life. His life was as complex as the story of America.
As with anything I see, hear, and think, my mind would been in this globalisation-analytical-critical-complexity mode allowing it to feel what the issue was all about and to let me come to its natural conclusion as how my heart would feel as it dictates my mind to compute.
In contemplating the Orlando mayhem, memories of growing up encountering ‘gay-ness’ visited me. In my village I saw what ‘gayness’ looked like although I did not have a name for it. It was a story of my response to it as well as a brush with it and how the episode shaped my view of what this ‘thing’ is about. My narratives will consist of some observations - and confessions.
Encountering gayness
“Kita tarok Colgate kat mulut lah... he he he...” we giggled.
Before we go to sleep, we must put Colgate toothpaste on our lips, everybody in my team advised. I could not make sense of the advice until years later. As a young boy of ten or eleven, my soccer team would have ‘sleepovers’ to celebrate our victories or even losses in our kampong and inter-kampong matches.
Though one of the youngest, I was the captain of my team Garuda, a name I gave and a captainship I ‘appointed myself’, I prepared the team’s jerseys and using the shoe polish Kiwi-brand and a cut-out of the symbol of the Javanese mythical bird Garuda (I created) I ‘printed’ the logo on all the white T-shirts my team would wear at every game - home or away.
Home would mean the field right in front of my house - a balding field. Away would mean in some village outside of my ’hood Majidee. We’d walk for miles at times to go for our away games.
But for the ‘Colgate-on-the-lips-for-personal-safety-and-chastity’ advice, I was not the captain, I listened attentively to the older members of my team. It was a giggly advice but I did not realise how serious it actually was, coming from those who knew what has happened before and what would happen that night.
“Pretty boy like you will need the thickest Colgate,” I was told. They giggled at me in their batik sarong, in their Burmese-national-costume-looking Malay pajamas. We would be taking turns telling ghost stories. At the back of our minds, going to sleep became an anxiety bigger than waiting for another story of pontianak to be told.
On the field he was a towering figure. I supposed he was more than six feet tall and he has a look of Rock Hudson, a Javanese actor, and what looked like a model from a tribe in Papua New Guinea, nicely combined. He was a dark-skinned Muhammad Ali-complexioned soccer player. I did not remember how he came to volunteer to coach Garuda, my team.
He would show us all the new moves in football and make us feel as if we were the Under-12 Youth of the Brazilian team.
Soccer or football was my life. A huge part of my life as a child. You take away soccer and you take away my legs. I live, breathe, dream, and think soccer. I’d even kick an imaginary ball everywhere in my house - in the living room on the wooden floor, in the wooden kitchen when grandma was cooking her gangsta chicken curry, and even in the bathroom when I was bathing naked with the huge earthenware pot (tempayan) in front of me.
I’d kick an imaginary ball and imagine myself the captain of Brazil - naked! Eleven-year-old naked captain. My mind was totally soccerised.
That beautiful sports of the underclass, like that of the Brazilians, was my other religion, And Pele was my prophet. Yet, Mr Edson Arantes do Nascimento was a prophet - of soccer. As a kampong boy I met many prophets and angels. And ghosts, too. And madmen as well. Orang gila-ism. Mat Gian as well. Drug addicts - definitely. Stoned and smoking hot kampong I grew up in. Gangsta ganja high many of the young people were.
But soccer made me a full human being, made me a real boy.
He would always be there in his light-coloured sports-shirt and his short pants. He'd be there as early as an hour before evening practice starts and would run around the field tagging along some of us who were there early.
We would be like two sets of seven dwarfs and he'd be like a Malay ‘Andre the Giant’. We’d be huffing and puffing and he’d be smiling while running two laps. His voice was commanding yet gentle. He was well-respected by his peers in the field although I once heard a villager refer to him as “Abraham the (Female Private Part)”, “Yem P...” in Malay.
Yes, I heard that and was trying to figure out what that meant and what kind of person he was. It was not a nice word I knew, especially when translated and used as a man’s family name - “Yem P...” in Malay. Not honourable at all. That designation of a man our team respected was a subject of my curiosity and my deep contemplation, leading to the incident of smearing our lips with thick, white Colgate-brand toothpaste.
Next week: Orlando shooting and Malay-Muslim gays, Part II


Read more: https://www.malaysiakini.com/columns/345634#ixzz4BroqdOcp

Thursday, June 09, 2016

Ramadhan myth of the Shackled Devil


by Azly Rahman
When I was very young, learning how to fast in the month of Ramadan, given all the lessons on how to be a good human being and go to Heaven, taught how to calculate and compute the good deeds I do, including walking a mile to the village masjid counting the steps I take, eliminating evil thoughts, praising my parents, my villagers and God in every breathe doing and all those a good ol’ Johorean religious education accorded me, I was always told that in the holy month, the Iblis/Mr Shaitan/Monsieur Diablo/The Fallen Angel/The Jebat-Malaikat reincarnate or whatever one calls as the Evil Guy who challenged The God to a game of finding followers (like the US presidential campaign for votes) - I was told that he would be imprisoned.
Ramadan - month of Imprisonment. I walked and talked - I’d count my steps and said my mantra “O’ God O’ God’ at every breathe, in hope that the Devil with Bling-Bling of the Seventies would not jump into my inner space.
Only on the first day of Hari Raya, the end of the fasting month and the day of the Great Victory, Mr Satan, probably wearing baju Melayu Telok Blangah Johor with a Gangsta Punk Rocker-Death Metal-Satanic Grunge Rock-Donald Trump-tattoo-inspired embalmed on his forehead would be released and allowed to have his ball of a-golfing and pole-dancing Prime-Ministerial Colombian Cartel-ish Hellish private-jet-setting time possessing me and my friends and those who are Muslims.
In three-piece suits and red tie and the Malay songkok, he’d be free to do his job creating chaos again. Hooray - free at last! Free at last! like Dr Martin Luther King Jr’s battle cry, Mr Iblis would sing his solo-a capella aloud, with a Muhammad Ali gusto. That gusto seen in Ali’s 1965 historic victory over Sonny Liston.
He’d be going into human hearts and whisper into our hearts to lure us into doing evil - stealing bicycles, playing ‘Tikam Tikam’ (Johor Chinese lotto and scratch-scratch gambling game,), and even drink shandy (low-dose alcoholic beer sold widely in JB), and continue to steal rambutans from neighbours.
I struggled thinking about how the Prince of Darkness looked like. But I know during Ramadan he would be incarcerated for at least 29 days - much longer than the British paedophile if you multiply every second on Earth equals to 1,000 years in Hell, making it many years of imprisonment - if you do the Maths.
I was happy the Havana Cigar-smoking Mr Devil-wearing Prada carrying a US$10,000 Birkin bag walking like a Ziggy-Stardust looking transgender from Jalan Bukit Timbalan, Johor would not be running around annoying humans of JB.
Then as I grow older I began to have serious doubts if indeed he was put away. I figure that if Hang Tuah was said to be put to death and was put away instead and did not die, I began to panic knowing that aspect of my belief would be shattered. A Kuhnian paradigm shift of a devilish magnitude was about to happen.
The great bard Shakespeare once said “Hell is empty and all the Devils are here (on Earth).” Wow - I began to get more scared. Maybe the ustazes who told me that were just parroting others before them who did not know much about the phenomenology and the politics of the Iblis or Devil-dom. Maybe, like many of my History teachers, they lied, too.
My History teacher told me that the Malacca sultans originated from Alexander the Great but when I read the Sejarah Melayu/Malay Annals, those folks did not even come out of human wombs but from foams and bubbles or foamy bubbles (buih buih) from some mystical Sanskrit-sounding ocean somewhere in a Hindustani Lala-land.
That was one big lie they told. I discovered more - stories juicier that just the foaming origins of the Malay sultans - creation myths crafted by some mentally and intellectually-slithering scribe named Tun Sri Lanang who perhaps was paid a truckload of durians by the Malacca sultan then. So, if Frank Zappa was the Father of Inventions, Mr Lanang was the Granddaddy of Lies.
A time for self-reflection
So - is Mr Satan Esquire shackled or not?
Ramadan, for the Muslims is supposed to be a time for reflection, self-reconstruction, and inner-revolution. It is supposed to cleanse the Muslim self-yearly of physical, emotional, as well as spiritual toxins. It is supposed to be the month of fasting practised as an extremely private act and that life has to go on as usual.
In Malaysia, after almost 60 years of Independence, we are supposed to see the fruits of inner sensibility, ethics, and humility of those fasting, displayed in public life.
But after 60 years, why have leaders we elect - especially Muslim leaders observing Ramadan - becoming allegedly more corrupt, arrogant, and abusive when power to rule others (and make lives more bearable) are given to them temporarily on the Earth?
If indeed the sixty Ramadans were supposed to make our country better, if we assume that sixty times a year leaders and the led have become more spiritual, why are we seeing the country turning devilish and those in power engaged in corrupt acts to the max diabolical? Why are we seeing the nation destroyed after three generations?
Why the massive loss of money, those political murders unsolved, those installation of newer acts that guarantees the crushing of good dissenting voices, and finally as of yesterday the gazetting of an act that ensures national security meaning the implementation of Draconian measures in full-force ready to crush, like the production of ayam penyet (beaten-to-a-pulp flattened-Indonesian originating-spicy chicken), anyone and even any leader or ruler trying to bring their state of Malaysia.
And to add to the list of diabolical signs and symbols of the times of the unshackling of the fallen Angel of Ramadan, we have religious-political leaders insisting that corruption, however massive and murderous at the most extensive of all scales, and however much the rakyat have suffered and will continue to do so for generations - corruption is not punishable by the hudud? Why? Why, why, why, Delilah?
Why - because the Devil was never shackled. Because it is a myth of Ramadan. Because he never was and never have been and never will. Because he has reincarnated - not as protons and neutrons - but as leaders in our midst.
Maybe those leaders in their old age still destroying the nations need to be, like the Fallen Angel, imprisoned. Or, the angels, like Gabriel Garcia Marquez’s in A Very Old Man with Enormous Wings, should be clipped of their wings and be sent back to where they belong, if not turned into ayam penyet; that flattened chicken.


Read more: https://www.malaysiakini.com/columns/344753#ixzz4B8ebHYwZ

Sunday, June 05, 2016

METALLICA PARANOIA MALAYSIANA GANGSTA ROCK GENRE? ..

METALLICA PARANOIA MALAYSIANA GANGSTA ROCK GENRE? ..

alright fine young religionistas ..
what's this paranoia over Metallica

to protest against rock kapak's finest gangsta
why not protest against the saudis and the egyptian massacre

leave those metallica folks to show their yellow culture
kids these days are becoming rockers and gangsta

in protest against the religionistas
a sure sign of a failure to teach them ethics and good behavia'

all because religionistas too are a tribal group of a postmodern culture'
supporting this or that regime whose politics they don't have quite a clear idea

whose fault is it, folks lend me your left ear ...
nobody' fault it's all paranoia

alright-- let us not fight over this group metallica
if you don't like them it's simple and clear --

stay home and listen to dangdut or dikir barat kampong guar cendana
you don't buy the ticket to metallica, you don't get to see them and enjoy
rock kapak' s glorious metal gangsta

have no fear
i too don't fancy metallica

i stay home and play the gambus of the ghazal and sing like the hindustani lata mangeshkar
but don't you ban led zeppelin either, you good religionistas

i will ban your acapella sung with turkish sitar
that is my paranoia

fear of old school rock kapak banned out of religious paranoia
okay-- fans of metallica

enjoy the show but don't do things gangsta
music is music
genre is genre
metallica is rock's finest gangsta

hush now religionistas
come one
come all
come to stadium merdeka 


-- azly rahman

Thursday, June 02, 2016

Anything better to discuss, than the Hudud and Hudud and Hudud, Malaysians?



by azly rahman
Stoning to death. More lashes to the Friday caning. Syaria Law eventually for non-Muslims. Leave Malaysia if you don’t like how things are run. That puzzling and trumpeting Bangsa Johor rhetoric - as if nobody can explain what the concept of ‘nation/natio’ is. Sabah and Sarawak wish to leave the federation.
Criticise the county and you’re not allowed to go for your overseas holidays. Who owns Gold Star and why the deep secret? Syaria-compliant this and that. A possible boxing match with Dr Mahathir Mohamad, in Kuala Kangsar. Humans eating ‘dedak’ or chicken feed. Is Hang Tuah a real person? Is the Taming Sari we have now a fake dagger?
These are some of the topics dominating the discourse of our nation. Can we do better than this? Don’t we care about the intellectual future of our children? Don’t we want them to emulate good ethics from us and the adults they see in power? Don’t we have such moral and critical thinking obligation to them, leaving behind good lessons in their national lives?
That much we owe them, so that they could carry on rejuvenating society without emulating the political and psychological ills of today’s leaders.
I feel that Malaysia’s youth of the next generation is missing out on good and productive discourse plaguing the national debate on things. Malaysians have becoming more global, progressive, intelligent, innovative, and articulate - at least from my analysis of the stories of successes I have been reading.
We might be shamed in the cyberspace and international media with the massive and complex money-laundering scandal implicating our leaders and members of their families, but we are also reading stories of ‘global Malaysians’ - in the arts, business, and sociopreneurship - doing well inside and outside of Malaysia. They are proud calling themselves Malaysians.
But I feel that the discourse dominating the country is one plagued with the filth of retrogressive-ness our youth need not be subjected to.
From the Islamists wishing to push the completeness of the Islamic penal code, the hudud, to the ongoing fights between the members of the opposition and ruling coalitions, to the increasing paranoia over race and religion produced by the political leaders, the daily news of cases of corruption, robbery in broad daylight, the ongoing public arguments between the Johor Royal household with select Umno politicians - showing who can be more arrogant that the other - the malaise in our education system, and a host of other issues plaguing us, I feel that we are not moving in the right direction and taking advantage of the richness and talented-ness of our diverse population.
In other words, we are constantly at war with ourselves and that the goal of each political party is to destroy one another and for each leader to aim for the jugular - to rule the country.
As citizens we are not allowed speak up against evil-doings, such as the massive losses arising from the 1MDB fiasco although it is the right of each citizen to know what can happen to their life savings such as those in the Employees Provident Fund (EPF), the Haj Fund, and the fund allocated for the servicemen and women (Lembaga Tabung Angkatan Tentera).
Bipolar a nation we have become
We are asked to shut up or else be locked up if we dare speak of the fate of our hard-earned savings. Bipolar a nation we have become, paranoia our leaders are plagued with.
We are not allowed to do all these although as citizens - besides going out to vote - we are accorded the rights to participate in nation-building through making suggestions on how to maintain check and balances in a society supposedly progressive and democratic.
What a pathological state of democracy we are living in. What a shame for a country supposedly a ‘fully-developed industrialised society’ with first-class infrastructure and rhetoric of hypermodernity.
Today the dominant theme is (again) the hudud; of the Hadi-hudud proposal. I am sure by now Malaysians understand what the demands are and how Umno is helping to fast-track the proposal. Although items concerning the Islamic penal code are minimal, they do point to the inching of our country to the illusionary and ‘non-existent’ concept of an Islamic state.
Although punishments such as stoning to death and amputation are left out, they might be tabled again eventually when the Umno-PAS coalition on the ‘survival of the Malays’ and the ‘defence of Islam against its enemies in Malaysia’ becomes louder battle cries, especially for the Islamists wishing to turn Malaysia into a Taliban nation.
Today, the insistence is that the Syaria Law and hudud is only for Muslims, tomorrow it will be for all Malaysians, as political logic would dictate. Analysts on the scenario and the futurism of the implementation of Syaria law and the hudud have written about the complexity of the issue and how it can never be a suitable law in a country that prides itself in the superiority of man-made law as such as the Malaysian constitution.
The thought of stoning to death and amputation itself makes one wonder of the barbarism to be represented as a punishment supposedly ordained by a merciful, loving, and compassionate god -– God of the Religion of Peace. God who forgives more than one who gets angry all the time. Perhaps not many Islamic scholars in Malaysia have even inquired into the ancient cultural origins of such punishments; for example of the Pagan (Greek) and early Judaic origin of stoning which was then borrowed by Islam.
Today, stoning to death can be considered barbaric and inhumane and opposed to the United Nations convention on torture. Why subject a wrongdoer to a slow death? Would that be a philosophical question of today as the Hadi-hudud PAS-Umno proposal progresses?
These developments in Malaysia that are colouring the discourse on hypermodernity continue to take away our consciousness - especially of the youth - of more exciting things to work on: environmental issues, sustainability, newer technologies of peace, green technologies, newer jobs, newer hopes for world peace, appreciation of the arts, humanities and philosophies in school, good labour practices, respect and understanding one another cross-culturally, virtual reality, Elon Musk, Bill Gates, Steve Jobs, and even new ways of crafting Malaysian politics so that the rich will not get richer and filthier and the poor taken care of well and re-humanised.
But we are not there yet. We seem to love letting the discourse on Medieval and Dark Age practices dominate us. We need to move beyond these. How do we do this?
Let us share as many ways. As a people let us not stone ourselves to death. As smart and peace-loving Malaysians, let us not amputate our intelligence; the gift of the intellect to be used for ethical and social purposes. Is not religion, from the Greek ‘religio’ about making peaceful connections and not about amputations or being spiritually empty after being stoned to death metaphorically?

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