Monday, 19 May 2008
Catch Mas Selamat? Send Iron Man
Not long after Mas Selamat's escape on 27 Feb, I wanted to write a column about it.
But I was worried that the authorities would suddenly get their act together, catch the guy and put an end to our national embarrassment before my article came out, thus rendering it obsolete.
I expressed my concern to a colleague who scoffed dismissively with a cynicism that only a long-time New Paper journalist could muster. "As if," she said.
That was 11 weeks ago. I needn't have worried.
Mas Selamat is still at large, even though he's not in the news much these days, dominated in turn by seat belts, killer cyclones and earthquakes, not to mention killer grocery prices.
He's not even the most famous man in Singapore anymore. That honour belongs to Iron Man this week. (Cue Black Sabbath.)
I mean what news is there to report about Mas Selamat since the sage culminated in the big reveal in Parliament last month that he climbed out the toilet window of the Whitley Road Detention Centre?
Not exactly the stuff of Hollywood blockbusters - like say, Iron Man.
It was an anti-climatic climax that provided no closure whatsoever because, well, we still haven't caught the guy. Maybe we should send Iron Man. (Sing it, Ozzy!)
How is it possible that we could apprehend that 20-year-old National Serviceman who went AWOL with a SAR-21 rifle within 24 hours last September, but not a mole-faced middle-aged escaped detainee with a limp?
That's what leading to conspiracy theories, like the one Opposition MP Low Thia Khiang brought up in Parliament that Mas Selamat had died in detention.
To some, it's more reasonable and perhaps more comforting to believe in a successful government cover-up than a failed island-wide manhunt by the security forces on which our nation's defence depends.
Despite the authorities' insistence on the contrary, many take it for granted that if Mas Selamat hasn't gone from this earth, he has at least gone from this country.
This is based on no more evidence than the simple fact that he hasn't been found yet. Because if he's still here, Singapore is so small that we would've found him already.
I beg to differ. My niece is getting married next month and she is not sending me a cake. Why? Because she lives in Bedok and I live in Choa Chu Kang. She said it was too far for her to travel. Clearly, Singapore isn't so small after all.
Now I just hope they don't catch Mas Selamat before this column comes out.
TRENDING POSTS OF THE WEEK
Thanks to recent taken-out-of-context comments by a former Prime Minister who shall remain unnamed, ministers' pay has been a hot topic...
It started with this Cyberpioneer Facebook post: What does Military Expert (ME) 1 Clarie Teo enjoy, when she is not busy keeping ship eng...
It has been a year since Clarie Teo left the navy with this Instagram post: The day has finally arrived, not everyone is meant to set fo...
Do you have enough of Navy chio bu ME1 Clarie Teo? Posted by Must Be Singapore on Tuesday, April 7, 2015 Meet the star of Mindef's ne...
I first met Darryl David at Gurmit Singh's wedding dinner in 1995. David's date was a woman named Lynette Pang , who was a stag...
It's back! The last time I wrote about the rendang burger death match was five years ago when McDonald's pulled off an upset vi...
When I learnt that Vernetta Lopez ’s autobiography Memoirs Of A DJ: Life In Progress was published last week, I rushed to the nearest major...
It’s like 1996 all over again. Only instead of the Macarena , we’re dancing Gangnam Style . Instead of watching the White House get bl...
Lately, I've been noticing the recurring use of an unfamiliar word on social media. Aisey. Posted by SMRT Ltd (Feedback) on Wedne...
Zoe Tay said she was “just sexy”, and that men love her and women hate her. I can’t speak for women, but as a man, I don’t exactly love...