We have no idea why the local media exercised a blackout and reported his visit only on the day itself. International media, especially, the ones in Jerusalem, have been reporting his visit since days ago and even explained his objectives for coming over. It is not a secret that he is coming!
Were the authorities afraid that reporting it early might drum up unnecessary attention? Were they afraid that our neighbours who were busy electing their Governor (Indonesia) and pushing Hudud Laws (Malaysia) would take this opportunity to incite hate and aggression?
We have two reasons why you should not be bothered by Netanyahu’s visit to Singapore today.
It’s a bloody reciprocal visit.
PM Lee Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong visited Jordan, Israel and the Palestinian Territories from 16 to 22 April 2016. He reaffirmed the good relations with Jordan, assured the Palestine people of the Republic’s commitment to support capacity building efforts and met leaders of major Israeli technology companies.
And out of the three countries he visited, only Israel returned this gesture by organising a reciprocal visit.
We would have welcomed both Jordan and Palestine with open arms too if they wanted to come!
Singapore supports a ‘two-state’ solution.
We are not doing a Trump who said “I’m looking at two-state and one-state and I like the one that both parties like,”
Our position has always been consistent. We have been even-handed in dealing with both countries and advocated for a ‘two-state’ solution very clearly from the start.
Netanyahu has his share of controversies of being far right with his policies. But hey, have you heard what Mahathir said about Singapore when he was the PM of Malaysia. How come we never boycott Malaysia goods or their cheaper than cheap petrol? What about Indonesia treatment of Aceh and stories of the genocide taking place there? Did you know what Malaysia did to the local orang Asli in Borneo? How come you do not stand up for these people too?
Since when are these atrocities less important than the ones you think is happening in Israel and Palestine.
As a person, I reject oppression and human rights abuse but I will not be bothered by his visit to my country. At most, I’ll just end up with a new orchid named after him.