Unknown enemy forces have invaded Singapore and innocent citizens were brutally murdered by the occupying force. Then the SAF soldiers started coming in and battle scenes ensued. Is this an early April Fool’s joke?
Nah, its just another Jack Neo’s movie. The PAP grassroot member is the director of the 3 million dollar local movie which seems to have a political agenda to fulfill aside from delivering classic hokkien jokes by lao pengs(old soldiers). Painting a doomsday scenario and raising the fear factor has always been PAP’s forte in keeping National Service “platable” for Singaporeans. How many times were Singaporeans reminded of the gruesome massacres during the Japanese Occupation? The strategy of invoking fear and disgust has also been a key cornerstone of National Service – and my, Jack Neo have overdone the SAF this time.
National Service today is very different from the past, and Jack Neo happily emphasized that with typical SAF’s bullshit like “the life of soldiers today is wayyyyyyyyyyyyyyy better than the hell people went through in the past”. Good food, good bed and heck each solder even got his own laptop? So being relatively better-enslaved is supposed to justify why National Service is even necessary in the first place?
It is bad enough to put fallacious points across like a 2 years of conscription is the only manner Singaporean men could ever become mature. Worse, Jack Neo has literally slandered the act of chao keng, or malingering in the SAF’s eyes. In fact, chao keng couldn’t have been more maligned. When freedom is taken by unjust laws and the dictatorship threatens young men to hand over their freedom or face jail terms, chao keng is nothing more than an act of response. Jack Neo has tactically tilted favorably to the SAF and the PAP by presenting a transformation of an anti-NS immature boy to a responsible pro-NS adult. Nothing could really be further away from the truth with this stereotyping of the chao kengs. Chao keng is a punishable offense that warrant a mandatory jail term under the draconian SAF military law, and risking one’s weeks of freedom to enjoy moments of respite is totally unproportionate and lack common sense. Chao keng soldiers are not cowards, knowing full well a war in Singapore is very unlikely and dying during training is far and between with all the safety procedures, they still take the real risk to challenge the SAF. In fact, getting jailed by the SAF is more probable than a war happening so thats why cowardice are ruled out. The real reason behind chao keng is never told in the pro-SAF movie.
Most chao keng soldiers, are in fact very well aware of what they are doing and the consequences of serving in the SAF. Some could even tell you what are the exact punishments and statures are. There are many who are anti-war, but succumb because they do not want to be criminals by default. There are some who are sole breadwinners and are having such a hard life already that enlistment has seriously jeopardized their family’s finance. There are some who are responsible fathers and sons, and they know full well that their deaths is too much for their families. There are some who have great hopes for the future they want to be in, and risking a limb or a life for the SAF is totally unworthy. There are some who sees the PAP government as the real enemy of Singaporeans, and they see NS as a Treason Service furthering the PAP’s interests instead of a National Service to Singapore. Or there are some, who are simply unconvinced by the lopsided logic of National Service.
Defending Singapore today is a harsh joke. A joke where foreigners flood the country, take the jobs and partners these young slaves could have. When the ruling PAP government shamelessly announced that their National Service has to be paid in millions while the NS men are paid in hundreds, seriously, what’s left of Singapore to defend? The flashy economy is not worth defending either because the GDP figures doesn’t concern the average NS men who are left jobless by the influx of foreign labor. The same subsidies and perks Permanent Residents and New Citizens enjoyed without having to serve NS because “it is not fair to them”, is not worth defending. What is worth defending then? The PAP government who tells you Meritocracy is in place and confiscates your CPF money?
What’s in it for NS men then? Since it is not for National Identity in a country flooded by so many foreigners you can barely call home. What is that particular something in those on-the-ball die-hards? Like a mysterious cocktail, an ingredient is the siege mentality that Singapore would be under attack where mothers would be raped. The other could be the facade that the SAF and the PAP government is uncorrupted and that they are the best the world could wish for. Propaganda, and that is what keep them going, for they are addicted to propaganda like cocaine, or perhaps something better like the rare divine drops of benefits from the PAP and SAF – awards, guaranteed employment, riches and pearls of wisdom by esteemed PAP Ministers and the army generals. These garang warriors are puppets who have been psycho-ed and their primary role is to spread lies like a ponzi scheme so newly indoctrinated slaves would always cushion their feets and help them grow. The unknowing ones could be mere fools, but the knowing ones acted purely out of self-interests, and it is totally common to see these appointed “leaders” with little or no leadership abilities. Every soldier a leader? Sounds familiar.
If I had propaganda my way, instead of stories about merciless killings from an invasion, I would run stories of how a repressive authoritarian regime rounded up political activists and jailed them indefinitely without any remorse, or perhaps stories of how elections were rigged or stories of “National Con-versations” with disenfranchised citizens. That would pretty much play up the fear of having a single party state and the consequences leading from a lack of democracy.