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Sunday September 29, 2013 MYT 12:00:00 AM
Sunday September 29, 2013 MYT 11:43:26 AM
by nelson benjamin
Dressed to drill: Special forces personnel marching during the celebration at Kem Iskandar in Mersing.
MERSING: The special forces who fought against the communist guerillas led by Chin Peng will never forgive or forget the atrocities against them by the rebels.
Malaysian commando veterans club president Kpt (R) Datuk Mohd Ali Shamsudin said many special forces men, being the frontliners during military operations against the terrorists, sacrificed their lives defending the country.
“I lost at least five good friends in ambushes and booby traps set by the insurgents.
“I hope the Government honours those who were killed or maimed at the hands of the terrorists and never allow Chin Peng’s ashes to be brought into the country,” he said at the Special Forces Day celebrations at Kem Iskandar here yesterday.
Some 250 veterans from around the country took part in the event, which was launched by the Johor Ruler, Sultan Ibrahim Sultan Iskandar.
Chin Peng died at the age of 88 in Bangkok on Sept 16 and was cremated at a temple in the Thai capital after a four-day wake. The Malaysian Government has disallowed his ashes to be brought back to the country.
Mohd Ali hoped the Government would look into the welfare of more than 4,000 special forces veterans who had left the service.
“Many of them are now security guards, taxi drivers, odd-job workers and labourers. This is sad as many are highly skilled and suitable as bodyguards and divers for the oil and gas sector,” he said, adding that they were also expert parachutists.
He said most special forces men retired at 40 after 21 years in the service, adding that they were fit for work in the private sector.
Meanwhile, the Sultan of Johor, in his royal address at the event, reminded the special forces to be always prepared for challenges, such as the unexpected intrusion of militants in Lahad Datu, Sabah, earlier this year.
The Ruler hoped to see the Defence Ministry and the country’s leadership equipping the special forces with advanced weaponry besides looking at the human capital and organisational requirements.
“Every life of a member of the special forces is valuable and it is pointless to get killed due to defective weaponry or other weaknesses,” said Sultan Ibrahim.
Remembering heroes and villains
Tags / Keywords:
Courts & Crime, Family & Community, special forces, communists, chin peng, the sultan of johor, commando, veterans
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