Wednesday, July 30, 2008

9:56 PM

ISD talk + GP Paper 1 test

NYJC was very privileged today to have a senior official from the Internal Security Department to take part in a closed forum. Due to the classified nature of the detailed information he released to us, I cannot divulge anything except those that is already common knowledge to the public.

Lets start with a short intro. According to its website, it was spun off from the Ministry of Interior and Defence in 1966. Since then, its primary goal in summary, is to ensure the safety of Singaporeans and to protect the interests of the state.

One thing I dun like about the ISD of both Singapore and in many other countries is that it has the power to arrest people and detain them indefinitely without trial. Granted, the ISD has to go through many layers of bureaucracy before it can take such an action. But the feeling that such decisions are "up to the jurisdiction and discretion" of the state simply makes me uncomfortable.

But I have to agree, given the current climate of fear, some freedoms have to sacrificed (as if Singapore is free enough in the first place!) in the name of security. The debate on where to draw the line is best left for others to do, not here. I just hope Singapore does not go down the road of the US government by instituting the Uniting and Strengthening Singapore by Providing Appropriate Tools Required to Intercept and Obstruct Terrorism Act, which is my satirical version of the USA PATRIOT Act.

Its no guarantee that the ISD or even the ruling party will be clean forever. Is it certain that the ISD will always remain impartial in the years to come? I also wonder if the ISD can come under the purview of the Corrupt Practices Investigation Bureau if the need arises? This and many other questions.

SDP secretary-general Chee Soon Juan was never arrested by the ISD, but he went to jail several times after being tried and convicted under the (very impartial...) court of law. Nevertheless, although one's political affiliation is not supposed (in my view) to affect ISD investigations, I wonder how far is this true.

I first heard of Operation Spectrum from my father some years back. In 1987, 22 people were detained by the ISD on suspicions of a Marxist political conspiracy. That wiki entry has more details including torture allegations. As PW teachers like to tell us, Wikipedia may not always be accurate, so just read it but don't treat it as sacred fact. Further details appear sketchy to me so I won't state anymore facts which I am unsure of. Singapore window has a post about it too. Gopalan Nair which was recently arrested in Singapore for defaming a judge (presiding over Chee Soon Juan's defamation trial) has a list of ISD accusations in his blog.

Another case I heard was when former Jurong MP and Barisan Socialis member Chia Thye Poh was arrested in 1966. Singapore Window stated that he was detained without trial for 22.5 years. Thats the second-longest "political" detainee in the world after Nelson Mandela's 27 years. Notice, I did not state the reasons of his arrest? Because many websites I visited did not pin their speculation to an official/reliable source. Its up to you to interpret the reasons for his arrest.

Ok, its time to end this section. You may shoot me on why I did not question that official when I had the chance. Well, right then, I did not think of all these and was unsure about the accuracy of my knowledge. So I did not want to go up to ask questions which at best, would make a fool of myself, or at worse, end me up in a libel suit. Even more so when the school only informed us about this talk TODAY. If we had time to prepare, MAYBE I would have gone up.


Took the first part of the GP Common Test 2 today. Seriously, I have never felt so uncertain about my essay before. The topic I wrote on was "Education is no longer about learning, it is about economic survival. How far fo you agree?"

This question was hard enough, but the rest were harder. Its the first time for any essay exam which I have to pause and think after each sentence. Normally, I can keep writing continuously, more worried on whether my writing can catch up with my chain of thoughts.

An overall A for the Common Test 2? I have to pull off another 35 for this which is highly unlikely. The 35 for mid years was written under the question which combined the elements of my strongest knowledge centres. This, nah... would be happy if I got above 25.

Labels: ,

0 Comment(s)

Post a Comment

Posted by yeokm1 aka the insigificant observer

























 Subscribe in a reader

Subscribe to posts via Email

Comments feed

Minimum Page Requirements
Best viewed at 1024x768 resolution
16 colours (16-bit recommended)
Optimised for Mozilla Firefox 3.0
A text browser will also do
Tahoma, Georgia & Verdana fonts
IE STRONGLY not recommended
No operating system limitation

Recent posts

General 16: Class forum ++
NEFMQ 2008
Triple birthdays
Results + %*&!>'[]
Some random post on results
NS medical checkup
Overall results + Chart toppers
Phone firmware update
The march begins. Today!
School reopens!


May 2007 ::: June 2007 ::: July 2007 ::: August 2007 ::: September 2007 ::: October 2007 ::: November 2007 ::: December 2007 ::: January 2008 ::: February 2008 ::: March 2008 ::: April 2008 ::: May 2008 ::: June 2008 ::: July 2008 ::: August 2008 ::: September 2008 ::: October 2008 ::: November 2008 ::: December 2008 ::: January 2009 ::: February 2009 ::: March 2009 ::: April 2009 ::: May 2009 ::: June 2009 ::: July 2009 ::: August 2009 ::: September 2009 ::: October 2009 ::: November 2009 ::: December 2009 ::: January 2010 ::: February 2010 ::: March 2010 ::: April 2010 ::: June 2010 ::: August 2010 ::: September 2010 ::: October 2010 ::: November 2010 ::: December 2010 ::: January 2011 ::: April 2011 ::: May 2011 ::: July 2011 ::: October 2011 ::: December 2011 ::: February 2013 :::


0713 ::: Blog Admin ::: CCA ::: Computers ::: Education ::: General ::: Mathematics ::: Media ::: Milestones::: Science & Tech ::: Singapore ::: Politics :::


0713 Blog
0713 Forum
Chuen Hwee
Guo Hao
Hong Hao
Jia Cheng
Jia Rong
John Tan
Jun Hong
Wei Han
Yan Chao


Benjamin Cheah
Hao Yi
Mr Seah
Peer Tutoring
Ying Yi


AMKSS blog
AMKSS Infotech Club
Han Ling
Hua Zhen
Jason Teo
Jia Min
Jocelyn Tan
Mrs Chung
Shiuan Shiuan
Xin Yi


Benjamin Low
Ming Ching
Phil Shapiro
Pico Ruiz
Zhong Hao
Darren Lee

NYJC/Geek/Misc pages

Official website
Student Leaders

Game for tweaking?
Geek gadgets galore!
News for nerds (or geeks)
PCworld Community Voices

4/2 forums (probably defunct)
Diary of a Singaporean Mind
Little Speck
Mr Brown
Mr Wang Says So
The Online Citizen
Sammyboy's Alfresco
Singapore SC for Reform
Singapore Angle
Singapore Patriot
Singapore Window
The Thinker
To Fix a Mocking Peasant
Xenoboy in SG
Visit the PCWorld forums!

My Mascot

I'm Kheng Meng, yeokm1 aka "the insignificant observer"

Came to life on 5 September 1990


3.Blogskin testbed
4.Private blog (ceased posting)

View my Profile

Search posts

My schools

NS STTS MSET F23/09-10 G2
NS 3 Signal Batallion TCC2 UIP
NS Signals 04/08 Infocomm 1 WACTC
NS BMT Orion Coy Platoon 3 Section 2
Nanyang JC 0713, Tribe27, 0720, OG18
Ang Mo Kio Sec 4/2, 3/2, 2/5, 1/5
Rosyth Primary 6-03 , 5-03, 4-01, 3AC, 2AF, 1A6