Deceived into supporting capitalist Palm Oil Industry

  • 3 September 2007
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The Malaysian Capitalist Palm Oil corporations are using the ever readily modified language game in order to simultaneously deceive and appease European and American consumers, NGOs and activists, particularly in Europe since then it has the strictest socio-environmental laws in the world.


Hijacking and manipulating the agenda of “Global Warming Crisis”, the persistent language game of such corporations now is not anymore about “expanding palm oil industry” but “to expand to maximum capacity, the (supposedly sustainable) biofuel through Biodiesel Industry/Plant”.

Such expansion has been and continue to be at the most tragic cost of the “Third World's” human and environmental rights. That include the destruction of ancient million years old and glorious South-East Asia's Tropical Rainforest and its biodiversity of wildlife, and socio-environmental rights of traditional indigenous communities, mainly in Malaysia, Indonesia (including the extremely brutalized and colonized West Papua by the Indonesian Government), Papua New Guinea and Cambodia. As with the logging industry, some of the plantation products might be exported into China first, before being processed and exported into Europe.

What is ironic is that some gullible European consumers, including environmentalists have been bought into the idea that any biodiesel including from palm oil to replace petroleum especially for cars, is necessary to construct a less polluted West, besides contributing to the reduction of Global Warming (particularly in the western world).

But how they forgot that the whole world is interconnected whether through the natural world or humanity; that is by the destruction of ancient Tropical Rainforest, first from mass logging, then the same logged area exploited further for mass Capitalist palm oil plantations (besides other mass plantation industries such as Acasia for new timber, coffee, sugar cane and so on) in the “Third World”, has been proven to contribute to a warmer world all over. As based on a report by an environmental website, intended to raise awareness towards the importance of preserving Tropical Rainforest,called, deforestation will contribute towards:

 "release of greenhouse gases into the atmosphere -- roughly 20 percent of annual emissions of such heat-trapping gases result from deforestation and forest degradation…Reducing tropical deforestation is key to decreasing global emissions, said Katharine Hayhoe, a research associate professor in the Department of Geosciences at Texas Tech University and a co-author of the report. (see Buttler, R. A. in"

 Which would explain the great possibility of why currently the western world is also being impacted by an increasing warmer climate and natural disasters that include mass flooding, wildfires, heatwaves and so on.

As shown in the Al Jazeera English News most recently, the propaganda campaigns by the Capitalist palm oil corporations continue on. An uncritical and simplistic reportage by an Al Jazeera journalist, praised Sweden for aggressively leading the way to replace petroleum with biodiesel, without questioning what kind of biodiesel it is.

As has been reported recently in the Malaysian media, the Swedish Trade Minister who, after meeting up with the Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil secretary-general in Malaysia (see The New Straits Times, Sweden: EU should lift biofuel import tariffs, 16/07/07) is demanding that there should be increase export of biofuel from palm oil into Europe. This Minister whom I can presume has not travelled from his luxurious comfort zone  to Borneo, especially rural Sarawak, would have been stricken with shame and would have woken up from his 'blindness' if he had seen for himself the extent of such destruction of our ancient Tropical Rainforest and the poverty and suffering of our traditional indigenous communities being hold at ransom by those mass logging and palm oil and other plantations, and corrupted politicians.

Although the EU Commission Delegation based in Malaysia seems to have no qualm about being overly hosted by the most notorious logging and plantation corporation, Samling Sdn Bhd, when doing their fact-finding mission early this year in rural Sarawak Borneo. Besides, palm oil plantations being one of the ugliest environmental scenery there is, with little sunshine coming through the trees, and (the surrounding fully grown area is usually enveloped by a depressing sense of ‘darkness'), the massive loss of biodiversity of wildlife and traditional indigenous communities losing their ancestral land and forest rights.

Further, there is also an increase in the export of our wildlife for barbaric and vicious animal experimentation and vivisection, as recently announced in the new law to lift the ban on the export of long-tailed monkeys. Moreover, most likely many of these wildlife are caught while the forests are being cleared.

And now, these greedy Capitalist logging and plantation industries, with the total support of greedy and corrupted Capitalist politicians and the manipulation of the justice system, are even hijacking our spirit of celebrating our upcoming Malaysia's Independence Day.

As with the announcement a few days ago, in regard to expanding further their ruthless ambition where a Malaysian giant palm oil corporation will exploit further thousands of hectares of  beautiful coastal region of Sandakan of Sabah Borneo and Kalimantan Borneo, of which such biofuel will be exported mostly into Europe and the US. It looks like our liberation from British Capitalist colonization has been hijacked tragically by the local Capitalist class that includes the indigenous Capitalist class, mainly from the dominant and superior-thinking Malay ethnic group. The politicians and corporations from this class wrongfully think they own the government and hence, they also own the nation-state and the people of Malaysia. And when ordinary and radical citizens resist against such injustice and to recover the truths (as anyone should have such intention in a true democracy and within a highly interconnected individual and social conscious spirit –see Hegel on this), that include bloggers, citizen journalists and activists, these coward and politicians crudely call us ‘monkeys', ‘goblok –stupid', ‘liars', ‘traitors', ‘Anti-Modernizers/Development', ‘Satans' and including to indict us under the ridiculous Defamation Act.

And yet it is those extremely greedy, ruthless. corrupted and primitive Capitalist class of politicians and corporations that have really betrayed this once glorious nation-state and its people, which used to have such beautiful natural environment that include the most ancient Tropical Rainforest and all its ancient diverse wildlife.

That's how I remember it, running wildly and happily in my childhood through the villages and ricefields, swimming in clean rivers and the ocean, trekking through the beautiful rainforest and mountains, and walking on remote resort-free sandy beaches. But I am not merely trying to be nostalgic but to remind us also that it is still possible to save what ever is left of our natural environment that include the ancient Tropical Rainforest of South East Asia and hence contributing towards reducing Global Warming; and for that we need foremost: Europe's radical socio-environmental conscious consumers and NGOs help. Since Europe is the second biggest importer of our logs and increasing importer of our palm oil and other mass plantation products, besides having the strictest socio-environmental laws (and hopefully other such consumers from the US, Japan, India and the Middle East, where these countries are also big importers of our logs and palm oil products, will also assist us).

Such significant help can be the smallest one, that include writing or calling up their left (especially from the Green and Socialist Parties) European MPS to debate this issue in the European Parliament, and ultimately for NGOs to promote a ban in place of both our logging and plantation products including through China, until “Third World” Governments including the Malaysian and other South East Asian Governments, has truly improved on their human and environmental rights.

Europe should seek and lead the way if need be (but not through Imperialism nor superior-thinking), for true and just ways for a better world and humanity amidst such acute socio-environmental crisis in a truly modern century, as how Bruno Manser has shown us Malaysians that such  true and just ways are possible. Unfortunately, it seems as if Europe itself has long forgotten and long neglected Manser as one of the greatest and bravest human rights activists and environmentalist in the modern century, when not demanding bravely a proper investigation from the Malaysian Government into his disappearance in Sarawak Borneo rainforest since 2000.