Saturday, March 29, 2014

In Malaysia, truth is a stranger. What if Inmarsat is wrong? Another Junk Science?

Side Note: We expect to see more Altantuya appearing as the MH370 flight mystery deepens - especially when someone has started to cast doubts and questioned Inmarsat accuracy.
Source: GulfNews - Wash Post

By Hui Mei Liew Kaiser Published: 20:00 March 29, 2014 Gulf News

On Monday, Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak appeared before the press to announce that missing flight MH370 “ended in the Southern Indian Ocean.” Najib’s statement finally gave the families of the passengers an “answer” on the fate of their loved ones. But it comes after weeks of spectacular obfuscation by Malaysian government officials, who repeatedly fudged details, contradicted each other or used the tragedy to score points against the political opposition.

Just to add insult to injury, Malaysian Airlines informed the families of the sad news by sending them a text message. Small wonder that some of the relatives are now accusing Malaysian officialdom of orchestrating a “cover-up,” and demanding to see concrete evid-ence such as the plane’s black box.

The rest of the world has reacted to the half-truths of the Malaysian authorities with bewilderment. But to us Malaysians it’s nothing new: We’ve been putting up with this sort of garbage our entire lives. Our officials are incapable of communicating because they’ve never felt the need to. Our corrupt and incompetent bureaucracy regards its own citizens with such top-down contempt that its dialogue muscles have simply atrophied.

So it’s no wonder that Malaysians have spent the past few weeks coping the way we’re accustomed to: by indulging in conspiracy theories, the last pathetic refuge of people who know that they can never expect the truth from their own leaders. So we’ve seen some Malaysians blaming the loss of the plane on everyone from our own government to the United States, China, North Korea, Iran, Afghanistan and — why not? — aliens. Yes, it’s sad. And yes, it’s more than a little crazy. But in the final analysis you can’t really blame us. Where else are we supposed to find any answers?

The Malaysian government’s response has been dismal almost from the moment MH370 went missing. In most countries, the prime minister would step forward and take the lead during a catastrophe of this magnitude. In Malaysia, however, our prime minister decided to spend his time boasting about his skill at buying cheap chicken, analysing the economy’s health based on the price of kangkung (water spinach), or strolling around shopping malls. He’s left the bulk of the mundane task of disaster management to the acting transport minister cum minister of defence, Hishammuddin Hussain, who has figured as the official government spokesman at a number of press conferences following the disappearance of MH370. (Hishammuddin, it’s worth noting, is a cousin of Prime Minister Najib — a coincidence quite widespread in a country where politicians are often linked by clan ties.)

Judging by the reactions from passengers’ families and the international media, Hishammuddin hasn’t exactly been doing a stellar job. In the early days of the investigation, the minister and his team event offered a conspiracy theory of their own. In this case, Malaysian officials speculated — without offering any particular evidence to back up their claim — that the plane’s pilot, a “fanatical supporter” of opposition leader Anwar Ibrahim and a relative of Anwar’s son-in-law, might have been motivated to hijack his own plane for political reasons. The day before, a Malaysian court sentenced Anwar to five years in prison on sodomy charges, a decision that bars him for running for office in upcoming elections. Again, none of this comes as a particular surprise. In recent years, government officials have developed the habit of blaming everything and anything on the opposition, and especially on Anwar.

Paternalistic political culture

One side effect of the government’s inept response to the MH370 catastrophe, according to some, is that it has prompted some unwelcome analysis of the country’s political system, which has been dominated by the ruling Barisan Nasional (BN) coalition for the past 57 years. So is Malaysia’s paternalistic political culture really being challenged now that MH370 incident has exposed its leaders to the withering judgements of international critics? I’m inclined to doubt it. As soon as the MH370 issue cools down, Malaysia’s government will return to business as usual. Nothing will change.

Just consider the scandal surrounding Abdul Taib Mahmoud, the chief minister of the Malaysian state of Sarawak. According to the Bruno Manser Fund, a Swiss environmental group, and local critics in Sarawak, Abdul Taib, who’s held office since 1981, has amassed enormous wealth (and caused vast environmental damage) through his unchallenged control of the state’s forests. These critics allege that Taib has used his power to enrich his own family and well-connected cronies, who have harvested billions of dollars’ worth of tropical timber. Early last year, the international corruption watchdog group Global Witness released extensive video footage from a covert investigation that showed Taib’s cousins explaining how they had circumvented state laws to acquire vast tracts of forest land.

In January 2013, 20 Swiss members of parliament filed a motion calling for an immediate freeze of assets held by Swiss banks on behalf of the Malaysian Taib family.

In a normal, democratic political system, all this would have prompted official investigations, parliamentary inquiries, demands for accountability. The Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission did organise a probe to investigate Taib — but the minister simply declared, with apparent impunity, that he would not cooperate with the “naughty” and “dishonest” commission. As a result, Malaysian officials have yet to open a domestic investigation into the case. One year later, in February 2014, the probe made the improbable claim that it could not find any evidence that Taib had abused his power. On this March 1, Abdul Taib was sworn in for a term as Sarawak’s governor — a position even more powerful than the one he held before.

Zero sense of accountability

Taib can get away with this sort of thing precisely because of his cozy relationship with the ruling BN coalition and the party that dominates it (the United Malays National Organisation, or UMNO). The ruling coalition sees Sarawak as a vital cache of votes for the party, and within this system, Taib is untouchable. In our general election last year, the main opposition coalition, led by Anwar Ibrahim, won just over 50 per cent of the vote — yet BN still ended up with 60 per cent of the seats in the national parliament. That’s because the government uses gerrymandering and elaborate dirty tricks to divide up the election system in ways that ensure continued BN rule, regardless of the way Malaysians actually vote. It’s not surprising, then, that there is zero sense of accountability in our country — and that the government officials who have risen to the top of the system feel little pressure to respond to those pesky demands for information from ordinary people.

The Malaysian government has a long history of ignoring its citizens’ right to know. Just take one of the most notorious cases. Back in 2002, an international human rights group filed an international court challenge alleging that the Malaysian government had accepted millions of dollars in bribes from a French shipbuilding company in the $1.25 billion (Dh4.59 billion) purchase of two Scorpene submarines. Though the French investigation produced enough evidence to implicate top Malaysian officials, the government summarily denied the claims, and no one was ever punished. Over a decade later, the scandal is still unresolved.

Or take the murder of Mongolian model and translator Altantuya Shaariibuu (which has also been linked to the submarine case). Witnesses linked Altantuya romantically to one of Najib’s best friends and close policy advisers, a man named Abdul Razak Baginda. Sources claimed that she was trying to blackmail Razak with her knowledge of the shady submarine deal before she was killed by two of Najib’s bodyguards. Though the case implicated both the Malaysian prime minister and his wife, the government never initiated any official investigation. The case has remained in limbo ever since.

A private investigator, P Balasubramaniam (known as “Bala”), made a convincing statutory declaration for the prosecution in the Altantuya case — but soon retracted the statement, and subsequently dropped out of sight, along with his entire family. Bala turned up again a few years later, claiming that he’d been offered $1.5 million by a businessman close to Najib’s family if he’d take back his original declaration. Bala died of a heart attack on March 15, 2013, in the midst of campaigning for the opposition in the upcoming election. Then Olivier Metzner, a French lawyer involved the submarine court case, was found dead in “an apparent suicide” two days after Bala’s death.

Not long after that the Malaysian Court of Appeals decided to acquit the two policemen who had been sentenced to death for Altantuya’s murder. The court’s decision provoked an angry response from Altantuya’s father and the Mongolian government. But, as we’ve pointed out, foreigners apparently have just as little right to satisfactory information from the Malaysian government as Malaysian citizens do.

We Malaysians, in short, have been putting up with this culture of official impunity for decades. Without having much choice in the matter, we’ve become accustomed to living under an authoritarian bureaucracy that mocks our requests for honest dialogue, and revels in its own contempt for basic rules of transparency and accountability.

Now the international community is getting its own taste of what dealing with this system is really like. What’s more, MH370 proves that Malaysia’s political immaturity is not merely a domestic issue, but threatens the citizens of other nations as well. As Malaysian citizens, we offer our sincerest condolences to the families of the passengers and the international community — and we hope that you’ll join us in the fight against our government’s blatant corruption. — Washington Post



Hui Mei Liew Kaiser is a graduate of Northern University of Malaysia in finance and international trade. She also holds a degree from the University of Malaya in International Strategic and Defence Studies.

Source: Celebzter.com

What if they are wrong? Satellite Company Inmarsat reversed position on where MH370 plane flight may be

By DJ Tanman on March 27, 2014

  • Swell of satellite experts question accuracy and reliability of data and methods for satellite ping “math” to locate a moving aircraft, while major news headlines praise the satellite company who claims to have located the final position of Flight MH370.
  • The math formula to project the last known location of the plane may be right but if one shred of input data is incorrect, the plane could be actually thousands of miles away.
  • Missing Information: The world was told by Inmarsat where Flight MH370 was located at 8:11 AM, but where is the ping data showing where it was at 7:11 AM, 6:11 AM, 5:11 AM, 4:11 AM, 3:11 AM, 2:11 AM? Certainly it would be great information for investigators to know the route the plane came on, and if the satellite company claims they have this data, why have they not published it?
  • Why is the satellite company not transparent about the missing satellite data which would have shown the flight path not just the last ping location, asks many satellite experts.
  • This is NOT GPS technology being used, the satellite company Inmarsat says their technology is not even designed to locate planes and this is the first time in history its ever been used this way in “ground breaking” math. Does “ground breaking” mean Junk Science?
  • Inmarsat Satellite company owners have earned more in stock spiking from their claims they figured out where plane ended up, than the US Government has spent on their own investigation of the missing Malaysian Airlines Flight MH370.
  • 18 days later; no plane, no debris, claims of “beyond a reasonable doubt” by satellite company, but no proof. Is this really “junk science”? After numerous claims of sighting of jet debris from 3 countries using high tech satellites is it time to rethink our reliance on sciences that are wrought with human error of interpretation?

Its been there for nearly 5 days in headlines around the world in black in white. Most of us read it but skipped over this detail consumed with the bigger newest headlines, “All have been Lost” when reading the announcement made by The Malaysian Prime Minster upon his own belief that satellite company Inmarsat had accurately concluded that the doomed Flight #Mh340 vanished into the southern Indian ocean, directly heading for the South Pole. But when the news is sorted out and facts and details are sifted through , there it is , the satellite company responsible for promising to have located the last known location of the missing flight MH370, also states something in plain sight…they made a mistake in their previous calculations just a week earlier when they projected that the plane could have flown as far north as Kazakhstan ( formerly part of Russia) but changed that assumption to a location thousands of miles away. The obvious was in plain sight, by their own admission, they had already made errors on calculations conducted during one of the most mysterious events in recent world history, in this case, their calculation may have been thousands of miles off. What the press read and played out was that Inmarsat come up with the “right answer”, forgetting quickly they had just made a huge error by their own admission.

Swell of satellite experts question accuracy and reliability, while major news headlines praise the satellite company.

Which got us to ask the question; what if the company providing the most important relied detail in the search; Inmarsat satellite, could still have made mistakes? We quickly began to investigate this and stumbled upon a bunch of experts in satellite and mobile consulting like Palo Alto USA based TMF Associates and others on the ‘net. Chatting it up in forums were other engineers, physicists, former aviation experts, and mobile technology experts who had lots of things that seemed to challenge what we were reading in the headlines. And at times, contradict immediately what we were reading in the news. As we read more and more reports of questions posed by experts , some of them were shocking and contradicting some of the constant barrage of headlines to congratulate the satellite company for its “groundbreaking math” in finding the supposed final location of Flight MH370. With details about technology we would need to seek out the experts . The most obvious question posed there by the experts was about those arcs many were seeing on television reports and in newspapers.

What if they are wrong? Satellite Company Inmarsat reversed position on where MH370 plane flight may be

PIng Data created by Inmarsat shows their calculated probable arc where missing flight MH370 may have been located at 8:11, but where are the arcs for earlier ping times?

Missing Information: We were told where the plane was at 8:11 AM, but where is the ping data showing where it was at 7:11, 6:11 AM, 5:11 AM, 4:11 AM, 3:11 AM, 2:11 AM? One of the first questions brought up by experts was ‘where is the ping data from the other hourly intervals?

If the final arc could give us the location of where the plane ended up; ping data and plot points could be shown for every hour before going back to 1 :19 AM when the plane went off radar. And these plot points when put together could give us some of the possible locations of where the plane flew from So where is that data? This seemed to fly right over the head of the media and journalists, it seemed no one asked this question. But not the engineers and consultants in satellite aviation. They were outright appalled that this data was missing and no one in the media or the world was asking ‘where is that data? Certainly knowing where the plane had been for hours before and its path could tell us lots of details for an investigation that has theories from suicide, terrorism, hijacking and even mechanical error being question. So plotting out where the plane had just been for hours seems logical to be an important bit of information that is right out in plain sight as missing. A few newspapers including the Washington Post apparently inadvertently drew in other arc circles to demonstrate these pings at other hours and even on CNN a demonstration incorrectly implied that many circles and arcs being drawn were from the previous ping data from previous hours Not true says many satellite experts since this data to this date has been shown to the media or to the public.

The math formula may be right but if one shred of input data is incorrect, the plane could be actually thousands of miles away.

This already happened to Inmarsat when they admitted had missed critical assumptions in their original data calculations and plotted that the plane could be as far away as Kazakhstan or as south as nearly Antarctica. Now that is one wide range in the first place when you are pinpointing a location of a 777 plane and narrow it down to a stretch on an arc of several thousand miles. Once Inmarsat dug deeper with their engineers they looked over things and realized they had left out a few variables, they changed the public statement. The plane could not be thousands of miles up on the arc in Central Asia, it was south back thousands of miles off the coast of Australia.

Data is information points that construct a math formula. You can have the correct math but if the data varying like speed you get a different answer every time speed changes. If we want to calculate signal speed from a satellite, we know that light waves travel at 186,000 miles per hour. In 1/1000 light travels 1860 miles, just about the distance from the satellite to Malaysia. so if a ping takes 2/1000 of a second that means the satellite is half the distance away.

This is NOT GPS technology, the satellite company says their technology is not even designed to locate plans and this is the first time its ever been used this way.

Inmarsat is the British company that carried out the satellite analysis that determined the plane went into the southern Indian Ocean. Malaysia’s Prime Minister said Monday the plane was last tracked over the water, west of Perth, Australia. There is “no way” the plane went north, said Chris McLaughlin, a senior vice president at Inmarsat. This of course contradicted the company’s earlier information it had released showing a map where the likely last ping from the plane was, clearly showing it assumed it could have been as far north as Kazakhstan. MH370 search map 315x236 What if they are wrong? Satellite Company Inmarsat reversed position on where MH370 plane flight may be

Inmarsat retracted this earlier map concerning the plane’s possible location as far north as Russia and Central Asia

The route into the southern Indian Ocean was the “best fit” with the signals the plane sent to a communications satellite.

But he cautioned to the press, “Nothing is final.”

“We’re not Earth observation satellites, we’re data satellites. So it will require a lot of different skills, a lot of different people, not least the naked eye, to finally confirm what happened to 370.”

McLaughlin said the mathematics-based process used by Inmarsat and Britain’s Air Accidents Investigation Branch was “groundbreaking.” The new calculations underwent a peer review process with space agency experts and contributions by Boeing, he said.

19 days later no plane, no debris, claims by satellite company, but no proof. Is this really junk science?

Experts question how the satellite company assumed the signal was not affected by environmental or physical factors like weather, or concrete or even one expert asked what would effect of a sinking plane only 200 miles from the satellite be, could it create a signal slowed down . This would make it appear so that the plane is thousands of miles away, when its really just a few hundred miles away. The number of variables that would affect data could change the results say the experts so would mean this event could have dozens of possible variables that could effect the data. Which is exactly the mistake the satellite company made the first time around, when they estimated the plane could be as far north on an arc as Kazakhstan, or as far south as off the coast of Perth Australia. If you are guessing, this would be hardly science and more like junk science. And why did they change the location from the north to south, because of the variables ( the satellites speed vs. airplanes speed and resulting doppler effect ) was not taken into account. Our point here is besides speed are there not other variables that could affect the location of the plane. This is the question other satellite experts point out could be certainly the case. And miscalculations can result in huge variation on how the entire investigation is handled, if the plane is in another location the investigation could shift to terrorism or in the current proposed location, the notion of a suicide. That uncertainty of the potential of worst kind of terrorism alone and the families of the passengers of flight MH370 deserve these questions to be asked and dug into. malaysian airlines mh370 315x177 What if they are wrong? Satellite Company Inmarsat reversed position on where MH370 plane flight may be

Protestors march in China to demand that Malaysia turn over satellite data to Chinese Government for inspection.

When we see especially families of passengers on the missing flight MH370 s who have reached the same conclusion; that there is not any proof that not only “all are lost”but that the satellite company who released data that created this conclusion has not proven its reliability having changed its position of the possible end of flight by thousand of miles already. Sadly much of the difficulties of getting to the facts of missing flight MH370 is about gleaning through the pubic relations posturing that is going on. And here we have started to sift through a seemingly great corporate PR story which was mounting; a public satellite company, stockholders anxiously awaiting to see if their military services and aviation satellite communications company Inmarsat will come up with the right answer, because it could be worth millions in spikes on daily trading of the company’s stock, literally. With facts like that woven in the myriad of stories coming out from every direction, it gets even murkier to wade through the mystery of missing flight MH370 with its 239 passengers. and crew.

----

"DJ Tanman" is living a dream as Hollywood writer/producer whose passions span his ventures in his fashion channel, motorsports , action sports, and generally living life on the edge with adventures to last a lifetime. His work in writing/creating and productions includes many action sports TV series with Momentum for Fox Sports as well as reality shows for CBS/ABC. His most TV series recent being BYOB-Bring Your Own Board TV. He has turned his endeavors and passion in writing to charity driven causes and campaigns and hoping to spotlight more celebrities and real life stories that have a compassionate side to them. He is a self proclaimed "closet" nerd having studied calculus, physics ,engineering, business administration, classic music, screenwriting and film studies at colleges including Northeastern, American Film Institute and UCLA.

Sunday, March 23, 2014

MH370: At last someone (a Pulitzer Prize winner) mentioned Altantuya

Ref: USA Today




Malaysia's bumbling ruling elite: 

Column

Lewis M. Simons 5:40 p.m. EDT March 23, 2014

Fiasco over missing airliner just the latest example of country's 
inept leadership.


As errors, misstatements, retractions and head-scratching
rationalizations tumble over each other in the case of Malaysia
Airlines Flight 370, the world is coming to recognize what the
country has known for decades — that Malaysia's leaders are
accustomed to getting away with murder.

Sometimes figuratively: For example, with elections looming and
Prime Minister Najib Razak losing popularity, top opposition leader
Anwar Ibrahim recently was sentenced to five years in prison on a
sodomy charge. Two years ago, Anwar, who enjoys support in
Washington, was acquitted after spending six years in prison on the
same charge.

And sometimes perhaps literally: In October 2006, the gruesome
remains of a human body were discovered on a remote hilltop outside
Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia's principal city. There was no corpse,
really, just hunks of flesh and shattered bone. DNA determined that
the victim was a 28-year-old Mongolian woman who had been involved
in a long love affair with one of Najib's closest advisers.

These instances of real-life political shenanigans and
pulp-fiction-style crime share deep cultural and behavioral traits
with Malaysia's clumsy handling of the mysterious Boeing 777 and the
239 people on board.

Spinning dubious stories

In the cases of the murder and the missing plane, Najib and other
political leaders have felt free to spin their own dubious stories.
The big difference is that this time, the world is watching as the
leaders repeatedly are caught in their own web of claims and
denials, allegations and refutations.

Where does this arbitrary political culture come from?

In 1979, following traumatic, bloody rioting between Malays and the
substantial ethnic Chinese minority, the government granted a broad
array of privileges to Malays, in effect ensuring them of perpetual
power.

This quota system also enabled the ruling party, which has held
office for 60 years, to ride roughshod over the facts, as we now see
regarding the missing plane. Questions such as how two Iranians
carrying false passports were allowed to board were bungled. The
matter of the jetliner turning off course went unreported.

A full understanding of Malaysia's ineptitude on the world stage
today isn't possible without recognizing the power elite's belief in
its open-ended unassailability.

Until the jetliner flickered off Malaysian radar screens, that
misplaced cockiness was best seen in the case of the murdered woman,
Altantuya Shaariibuu. She had accompanied Najib, then defense
minister, and his adviser, Abdul Razak Baginda, her lover, on a trip
to Paris to purchase two French-built submarines and an overhauled
Spanish sub for Malaysia's Navy.

The package was worth nearly $1 billion. French authorities are
investigating whether the defense company gave a $100 million
"commission" to Baginda. Shaariibuu, according to witnesses
at her murder trial, demanded a $500,000 slice for her services as
"interpreter."

Blind eye to justice

Once her remains were discovered, the short-reined domestic press
turned a blind eye on the prime minister's evident connections,
which he blithely denied. Baginda, an Oxford Ph.D., was imprisoned
on charges of abetting the woman's murder.

A year later, the high court acquitted Baginda. He left the country.
A private investigator he had hired quickly filed a stunning
declaration in court, implicating the prime minster and his wife in
organizing and covering up the crime. Baginda quoted a text message
the prime minister allegedly sent him after the woman's remains were
discovered: "I am seeing IGP (inspector general of police) at 11
a.m. today … matter will be solved ... be cool."

Within 24 hours, the private detective, without explanation,
replaced his declaration with a new one that erased all references
to the prime minister. Then he fled Malaysia.

In both documents, the detective identified two junior police
officers on the prime minister's security detail as having carried
out the killing. They were arrested, tried and sentenced to hang.
That never happened. Last August, the pair were acquitted.

After eight years, the murder case remains unresolved.

Anwar is in limbo, appealing his sodomy conviction yet again.

Najib, prime minister for five years, until now has remained aloof
and secure from the world's stares. With the disappearance of Flight
370 and the world pointing repeatedly to all the faulty information
coming out of Malaysia, business as usual finally might be coming to
an end.

Lewis M. Simons, a Pulitzer Prize winner, was based in Malaysia with
his wife and two daughters, who were born there.

################
 Ref: Al Jazeera:


Malaysia Airlines flight: 'This is not a normal investigation'

Malaysia's vanishing airplane catastrophe exposes the country's 
political and social fault lines.

Last updated: 20 Mar 2014 06:01
	
Zarina Banu

Zarina Banu is a freelance writer, focusing on economics and 
business-policy in the Asia-Pacific.
	
	
A catalogue of backtracking is defining the investigation thus far, 
writes Banu [EPA]

The crisis over Malaysia's missing Flight MH370 would surely test 
any government. But Malaysia's handling of the search, investigation 

and communication with the outside world has thrown it into an 
uncomfortable spotlight and caught it severely off guard.

The catastrophe is exposing the deep fault lines characterising the 
country's political economy. Since independence from the British in 
1957, Malaysia's ruling elite have built and reinforced a political 
system that has institutionalised their cultural and economic 
dominance.


Inconsistency

The system is so entrenched, it shapes and permeates all layers of 
Malaysian society. Now we're seeing it play out in how the 
administration is managing and communicating the investigation to 
the rest of the world.

A catalogue of backtracking is defining the investigation thus far, 
frustrating the families of those on board and provoking a backlash 
of anti-government feeling.

We've seen Malaysian officials contradict each other over vital 
early details about MH370's satellite communications systems. Acting 

Transport Minister Hishamuddin Hussein and Malaysian Airlines CEO, 
Ahmad Jauhari Yahya, have disagreed over whether the system was 
switched off before or after the flight's co-pilot uttered the now 
infamous signoff: "Alright goodnight" to ground control on 
the morning of March 8 when the plane disappeared.

Consequently, the pilot and co-pilot, Zaharie Shah and Fariq Ab 
Hamid, became the first suspects, in a possible plot to sabotage or 
hijack the Boeing 777, which led to bewilderment and distress 
amongst the families.

Inconsistencies also stood out in the police investigation. At one 
point, Hishamuddin said police officers had visited the homes of the 

pilots as early as March 9, the day after the aircraft vanished. But 

police chief Khalid Abu Bakar then confused the issue by saying 
officers had in fact not gone to the pilots' homes.

Things were muddled from the start. The hunt for the ill-fated jet 
began on March 8 in the South China Sea, was abandoned and diverted 
to the Andaman Sea and Indian Ocean.

Malaysians are concerned about the state of readiness of their 
military, after radar tracked an unidentified object moving west 
over peninsular Malaysia on March 8 and the air force took no 
further action to ascertain what that object was.

Sources close to the government have said, off-the-record since they 
are not authorised to talk to the media, that they are unsure how to 
manage the message.

Sure, it is a trial that would test any government, agency or 
communications team. With a daunting search involving more than 20 
countries and stretching across some 6.2 million square miles, it's 
like looking for a needle in a haystack.

Yet, there are some fundamentals here that Malaysian government 
agencies aren't following. What they should be doing is: Verify the 
incoming information; unify the message; decide which agency takes 
control of its dissemination and keep the families informed at all 
times.

The baffling stream of information must be heart-breaking for the 
relatives of the 227 passengers and crew. Of those, 154 are Chinese, 
a ratio which has prompted the mainland to rally behind their cause. 

Families of the victims have been filmed shouting at Malaysian 
officials as their grievance builds over the lack of information and 
disorienting turn of events.

China's Foreign Ministry Spokesman, Hong Lei, has even urged 
Malaysia to provide, "comprehensive and correct 
information".

My message to the government would be: Yes, this is not a normal 
investigation, but instead of playing victim to events, leverage the 

nexus of abnormality, tragedy and interest in the story to recreate 
a new Malaysia.

Malaysian government under microscope

Let's put it into context.

The global glare of publicity is landing on an administration deeply 
uncomfortable with any level of scrutiny.

Malaysia's ruling party keeps tight control of all aspects of 
domestic media - it is either state-sponsored, choked by 
authorities, or opposition-led. Media outlets or editors that dare 
question the administration perish by the wayside, or are ordered 
back in line.

At election time, the New Straits Times newspaper, a mouthpiece for 
the ruling coalition will be awash with barely rewritten government 
press releases, eulogising about the "achievements" of those 
in power.

What has this to do with Flight MH370? This stranglehold on free 
expression has nurtured a government unused to being cross-examined 
in public and more accustomed to changing its mind and message at 
will.

Moreover, the lack of oxygen given to rational democratic debate 
within Malaysia has fostered a cosseted leadership that either goes 
on the attack or retreats to its ideological ivory tower when it 
feels imperiled.

To enforce its intolerance of dissent, the Malaysian government 
deploys powerful tools of control. Until September 2011, the 
Internal Security Act (ISA) was a catch-all deterrent to those who 
spoke out openly against the government.

It sanctioned detention without trial and swept many opposition 
members into solitary confinement. In its place, authorities have of 

late been commandeering the Sedition Act to silence critics with 
increasing vigour.

This insidiousness has come to haunt the Malaysian government in its 
current time of need. True, as Hishamuddin said, "This is not a 
normal investigation".

But his and his cohorts' mishandling of crisis communications has 
made the government look shifty instead of perhaps being just plain 
incompetent, adding rocket fuel to the plethora of theories on the 
plane's whereabouts.

Hishammuddin  - himself -  is political royalty: He's the current 
prime minister's cousin, the son of Malaysia's third prime minister 
and nephew of its second. With his blood ties, he could easily be 
Malaysia's next prime minister.

Ethnicity and connections are highly likely to determine one's fate 
in Malaysia. Lucrative affirmative action policies promote ethnic 
Malays over the more than 30 percent Chinese and Indian minorities. 
The situation translates into each Malaysian being born with a 
semi-pre-ordained destiny - boosted by state coffers - that will 
decide which university you choose, what jobs you get, how many 
children you have, or even whether you end up in the cabinet.

Meanwhile, the elite have enriched themselves through a cosy network 
of crony capitalism that venomously lashes out at those who threaten 

its existence. Malaysia ranks third, behind only Russia and Hong 
Kong, in The Economist's crony capitalism index 2014, a list of 
"countries where politically-connected businessmen are most 
likely to prosper".

It's a sad indictment for a country that was once celebrated as 
having as much economic potential as South Korea.

Seize control of the situation

Social media, Asia's rising economic clout and irreversible 
globalisation mean the insular behaviour of the Malaysian government 

is long past its sell by date.

A Malaysian love of communication has neatly translated into a 
wholehearted adoption of the internet and social media - and with 
great effect. More and more Malaysians are turning to alternative 
web sites like Malaysiakini, The Malaysia Insider and Free Malaysia 
Today to source their news.

Indeed, the opposition's popularity partly rests on the delivery of 
its message through Facebook, SMS and whatsapp. Last year, the 
opposition's frontline social media campaign helped it wrestle away 
the government's crucial two thirds parliamentary majority, needed 
to change the constitution.

It's time the ruling coalition acknowledged that its supremacy - 
which has benefitted the few at the cost of many - needs a serious 
overhaul.

As a communications professional, my message to the government would 

be: Yes, this is not a normal investigation, but instead of playing 
victim to events, leverage the nexus of abnormality, tragedy and 
interest in the story to recreate a new Malaysia.

Zarina Banu is a freelance writer, focusing on economics and 
business-policy in the Asia-Pacific.

The views expressed in this article are the author's own and do not 
necessarily reflect Al Jazeera's editorial policy.

Wednesday, March 12, 2014

MH370 or UFO Mystery and The Disinformation Domination


There is no doubt that something extraordinary has  happened to flight MH370. 
Now we have too many people 'accidentally' involved  especially when the plane 
is nowhere  to be found and too much dis-information is  spreading around.  
We have nothing to hide," said Malaysian Defense Minister Hishammuddin Hussein. "There is only confusion if you want to see confusion." - Hishammudin

Earlier in the week, Malaysia's head of civil aviation, Azharuddin Abdul Rahman, was asked why the Strait of Malacca was being searched and replied, "There are things I can tell you, and things I can't," suggesting that the government wasn't being completely transparent - DCA Chief

Read more here: http://www.modbee.com/2014/03/11/3235013/malaysia-not-sure-which-way-lost.html#storylink=cpy

Such quote is enough to  describe Malaysia's unbelievable dis-information.
The government cannot allow information that can topple the government or harm its interests.
Especially if Altantuya (hint: Mongolia) has to do with the fate of MH370?
Or something precious and very top secret is on that plane.

There is a possibility we may never know what really happened - just like Altantuya.

---
THE TURNING POINT:

The latest  blunder 'crap' piece from Berita Harian has made things  even more 
intriguing but very interesting! It contained some hidden message.

This became obvious when Vietnam started to scaled down its SAR operation 
and China deploying 10  satellites to analyze the area.  
 Rodzali has since insisted that he did not make the comments attributed to him by the Berita Harian newspaper, and the report was "inaccurate and incorrect". 
The search on Wednesday swung even further up Malaysia's west coast, towards the Andaman Sea, but officials gave no indication there was a firm reason to expand the search other than its failure to bear fruit so far. 
In his latest remarks, Rodzali said authorities were investigating an unidentified flying object about 200 miles (320 kilometres) northwest of the Malaysian state of Penang - a long way from the flight path - around the time the plane vanished. 
"We are corroborating this. We are not saying this is MH370. It's an unidentified plot," he said at a news conference Wednesday.   - 




























UFO OR MH370  FLYING TO PULAU PERAK ?

If you read this blog thoroughly you will see - it seems something else (not  MH370 as reported by many sources)  is moving from MH370 (last known position) point of last track to Pulau Perak.  During this plot the movement of that something was like a fighter jet!.

It could be both UFO and MH370. Or something happened to MH370 that it became a UFO? 

As for now don't believe everything (100%) you read, see or hear because real things could be a lot different that what they seem to appear. It is kind of an illusion or magic in the  media sky where only people with the true 'eyes' of observation can see. 


THE SIGNAL BLIPS:
1. `The officials told ABC they believe the plane's data reporting system was shut down at 1:07 a.m. Saturday, while the transponder transmitting location and altitude was shut down at 1:21 a.m. 
"This is beginning to come together to say that ...this had to have been some sort of deliberate act," ABC aviation analyst John Nance told CNN's Erin Burnett.` - ABC News
2. `In addition, U.S. radar experts have looked at the Malaysian military radar track, which seemed to show the jet flying hundreds of miles off course west of its flight path, and back across the Malay Peninsula. Sources said the radar appears to be legitimate and there is a strong reason to suspect that the unidentified blips – seen on military controller screens – are images of Flight 370. . ` - CBS 
3. The US official, who spoke on condition of anonymity because he wasn’t authorised to discuss the situation by name, said the Boeing 777-200 wasn’t transmitting data to the satellite, but was instead sending out a signal to establish contact.
Boeing offers a satellite service that can receive a stream of data during flight on how the aircraft is functioning and relay the information to the plane’s home base. The idea is to provide information before the plane lands on whether maintenance work or repairs are needed.
Malaysia Airlines didn’t subscribe to that service, but the plane still had the capability to connect with the satellite and was automatically sending pings, the official said..’ ’- TheAustralian

4. David Coiley, a vice president of Inmarsat, a British satellite telecommunications provider, said the missing plane had been equipped with a signaling system from the company that sends out a "keep-alive message" to establish that the plane's communications system is still switched on.

The plane sent out a series of such messages after radar contact was lost, he said. Those messages later stopped, but he declined to specify precisely when or how many messages had been received. Coiley said Inmarsat was sharing the information with the airline and investigators.

"It does allow us to determine where the airplane is relative to the satellite," he said of the signal, which he likened to the "noises you might hear when you when a cellphone sits next to a radio or a television speaker." He said: "It does allow us to narrow down the position of the aircraft" - at the moment when the signal was sent. - NDTv


5. "One thing that does bother me greatly is the fact that unidentified aircraft could navigate back over Malaysia and out to sea without a physical or material response to that fact," said Britain-based aviation security consultant Chris Yates. "They were not watching." -  Press Association Independent

SIDE NOTE: THE INFORMATION GOLDMINE

It is all about communication and communication is  about movement 
of SIGNAL from one place to another.

SIGNAL is derived from wave and frequency. 

A movement (speed) of an object is detected through a frequency.
(v=f*lambda)



Reference:

http://thehackernews.com/2013/07/GPS-vulnerability-hack-navigation-drone-hacking.html

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Error_analysis_for_the_Global_Positioning_System

http://www.mysinchew.com/node/96488?tid=4


Malaysia jet search swings northwest, stoking criticism (UPDATED)

 Missing MAS flight

 2014-03-12 11:03

by Dan Martin

KUALA LUMPUR, March 12, 2014 (AFP) - The search for a missing 
Malaysian jet swung northwest towards the Andaman Sea on Wednesday, 
far from its intended flight path, exposing Malaysia to mounting 
criticism that its response was in disarray.

Vietnam scaled back its efforts to locate Malaysia Airlines flight 
370, carrying 239 passengers, which had focused on the South China 
Sea where the jet last made contact on a journey between Kuala 
Lumpur and Beijing.

No trace of the plane has been found since it vanished on Saturday, 
and contradictory and incomplete information from Malaysian 
authorities has infuriated relatives enduring an unbearable wait for 
news of their loved ones.

"We are not going to leave any chance. We have to look at every 
possibility," civil aviation chief Azharuddin Abdul Rahman told 
AFP, confirming the expansion to the Andaman Sea, which lies north 
of Indonesia's Sumatra island.

He did not indicate whether the decision to expand the multi-nation 
hunt hundreds of kilometres (miles) to the northwest of the original 
search radius was based on any firm indications the plane might be 
there.

Confusing and contradictory

Authorities had earlier expanded the zone to the Malacca Strait off 
Malaysia's west coast after citing radar data they said indicated a 
"possibility" the plane may have changed course from its 
intended flight path over the South China Sea.

But the shifting search areas have fuelled perceptions of official 
bungling.

Frustration mounted in Malaysia, with the country's active social 
media and some press outlets turning from sympathy for families of 
relatives to anger over the fruitless search.

"The mood among Malaysians now is moving from patience in the 
search for the 239 people aboard the missing flight MH370 to 
embarrassment and anger over discrepancies about passengers, 
offloaded baggage and concealed information about its last known 
position," Malaysian Insider, a leading news portal, said in a 
commentary.

Twitter users took aim at contradictory reports, and confusion over 
whether the jet had deviated from its intended course.

"If the Malaysian military did not see MH370 turn toward the 
Malacca Strait, then why the search? Who decided to look there and 
why?," one comment said.

"I think Malaysia Airlines and the Malay government is trying to 
cover up or hide something about flight MH370," wrote another.

The anger and embarrassment were compounded by a report aired in an 
Australian news programme of a past cockpit security breach 
involving the co-pilot on the missing jet.

Malaysia Airlines said Tuesday it was "shocked" over the 
report that First Officer Fariq Abdul Hamid, 27, along with a fellow 
pilot violated airline rules in 2011 by allowing two young South 
African women into their cockpit during a flight.

The report included photos of the women in the cockpit, with one 
appearing to show them posing with a man resembling Fariq. 
Passengers have been prohibited from entering cockpit during flights 
after the 9/11 attacks on the United States.

Analysts said pressure on Malaysian authorities could derail 
complicated search and rescue efforts.

"Public pressure may result in the command structure and unity 
of the search to crack. This is not what we want," said Gerry 
Soejatman, an independent aviation analyst based in Jakarta.

"Once that cracks, information and ability to verify becomes a 
problem and reckless speculation will overwhelm common sense."

Vietnam suspends air search

Vietnam, whose southern coast had been the focus of the recovery 
effort, said it had suspended its air search and scaled back sea 
operations as it waited for Malaysia to clarify the potential new 
direction of the multi-national hunt.

"We've decided to temporarily suspend some search and rescue 
activities, pending information from Malaysia," deputy minister 
of transport Pham Quy Tieu said.

"We've asked Malaysian authorities twice, but so far they have 
not replied to us," Tieu said, when asked about a media report 
that the plane had been detected over the Strait of Malacca.

"We informed Malaysia on the day we lost contact with the flight 
that we noticed the flight turned back west but Malaysia did not 
respond," he added.

Malaysia's air force reiterated on Wednesday it had not ruled out 
the possibility the Boeing 777 inexplicably changed course, but 
denied the report it had been detected in the Malacca Strait, far 
from its planned flight path.

"For the time being, it would not be appropriate... to issue any 
official conclusions as to the aircraft's flight path until a high 
amount of certainty and verification is achieved," Air Force 
chief General Rodzali Daud said in a statement.

"However all ongoing search operations are at the moment being 
conducted to cover all possible areas where the aircraft could have 
gone down in order to ensure no possibility is overlooked."

Authorities have so far revealed no details on radar data they said 
indicated a possible "turn-back".

The search zone shift is the latest twist in the mystery surrounding 
the plane. On Tuesday, Malaysian authorities said two men travelling 
on stolen passports appear to be Iranian illegal immigrants -- 
easing fears of terrorism.

Malaysia's national police chief Khalid Abu Bakar has said his 
officers are not ruling anything out but were now focusing on a 
possible hijacking, sabotage, or psychological or personal problems 
among passengers or crew.

The search operation grew to involve 42 ships and 35 aircraft as of 
Tuesday, from Southeast Asian countries, Australia, China, New 
Zealand and the United States.

China, which had 153 of its nationals on board the plane, said it 
would harness 10 satellites equipped with high-resolution imaging to 
help in the search.

Boeing said it was joining a US government team to try to unravel 
the mystery of what happened to its 777-200 plane.





http://www.thedailybeast.com/articles/2014/03/11/the-botched-hunt-for-malaysian-airlines-flight-370.html

The Botched Hunt for Malaysian Airlines Flight 370

Time is running out for the passengers aboard an airliner that 
mysteriously disappeared. And the man allegedly in charge of search 
and rescue mission is in danger of blowing it.

Who exactly is coordinating the release of information about the 
fate of Malaysian Airlines Flight 370? Nobody, it would seem. It 
depends which source you listen to—the government officials, the 
airline, or the Malaysian military. For there to be such imprecision 
in the information and so many contradictions between sources four 
days into a search would be farcical were it not for the tragedy 
unfolding and the distress being caused. Working quietly in the 
background, and clearly becoming frustrated, are crash investigators 
and a team sent to Malaysia by Boeing.

The chief of the Malaysian air force, General Rodzali Daud, who 
seems to feel he should appear as a voice of authority, was 
responsible for a radical revision of the supposed course of the 
Boeing 777. Now, he has said, the airplane changed direction from 
the direct route to Bejing and, instead, turned clear away from that 
course toward the south west and, apparently the last contact made 
with the airplane was an hour later than previously stated, 2:40am. 
If it carried on following this path it was heading out over the 
Andaman Sea toward India.

All this confusion makes it far harder for the searchers to know 
where to look. The absence still of any wreckage suggests that the 
airplane went over one of the busiest shipping lanes in the world, 
the Strait of Malacca. If it had crashed into that stretch of water 
it would have been like ditching in the English Channel—scores of 
ships would have seen it. This also an area known for piracy, which 
means that military radar surveillance would have been highly 
active.

The Malaysians have not even made the first basic step necessary to 
the investigation, to provide a timeline of contacts between the 
ground stations and the airplane after it left Kuala Lumpur. 
Instead, there are suggestions that the airplane’s transponders, 
essential to its navigation and to the controllers tracking it 
because they continually confirm its position, were turned off. 
That, of course, implies some kind of human intervention. But it 
could equally be the case that the transponders failed, in spite of 
the Boeing 777 having backup power systems to ensure that that never 
happens, which in turn could be caused by some catastrophic systems 
shutdown on the airplane.

Commander William Marks of the U.S. Navy’s 7th Fleet told CNN’s 
Wolf Blitzer that despite the search being re-directed to the Gulf 
of Thailand and deploying two destroyers, helicopters and a P3 
marine surveillance airplane with the world’s most advanced 
equipment not a single piece of debris had been spotted. “It’s 
not a matter of if we could see something,” said Commander Marks. 
“We’ve picked up small wooden crates on our radar, something as 
small as a soccer ball.”

    Confusion abounds. And that confusion makes it far harder for 
the searchers to know where to look.

If it is true that the 777 headed off into the vastness of the 
Andaman Sea toward India, no longer able to relay its position, it 
could eerily have echoes of what happened over the Mediterranean in 
2005. A Boeing 737 of Helios Airways flying from Larnaca, Cyprus, to 
Athens suffered what was called an uncontrolled decompression, due 
to a mistake made by the crew to the cabin pressurization settings 
after a door seal had been affected by freezing temperatures. Oxygen 
gradually leaked from the airplane and as a result the passengers 
and crew were rendered unconscious. The 737 flew on for three hours 
until it ran out of fuel and crashed into a mountain in Greece.

Greek fighter planes were scrambled to fly alongside the airplane 
and reported that the captain’s seat was empty and the copilot was 
slumped at the controls.

All of this happened in daylight, and controllers were aware that 
something was amiss. And to be sure, the 737 is mechanically 
dissimilar to the far more advanced 777 of Flight 370, but the 
phenomenon of a slow pressurization leak cannot be ruled out.

The 7th Fleet’s Commander Marks was far too diplomatic in his 
language to admit that his mission is being hampered by the chronic 
confusions of the Malaysian authorities. “We’re here for as long 
as they need us,” he said.



http://www.sfgate.com/business/bloomberg/article/Malaysia-Failing-to-Manage-Plane-Crisis-Exposes-5307626.php#page-1

Malaysia Failing to Manage Plane Crisis Exposes Leadership Limit

Sharon Chen and Jason Scott, ©2014 Bloomberg News

Published 12:32 pm, Tuesday, March 11, 2014 

March 12 (Bloomberg) -- Malaysia, aspiring to become a developed 
nation in six years, is finding that more than 50 years under one 
coalition and tight control over information is a mismatch for 
handling a rapidly growing crisis followed across the world.

China is calling on Malaysia to be more transparent as Prime 
Minister Najib Razak lets his cousin, Acting Transport Minister 
Hishammuddin Hussein, be the face of the investigation into why a 
Malaysian Airline System Bhd. plane vanished on March 8. It was en 
route to Beijing with 239 people on board. Investigators from at 
least nine countries are trying to locate the jet.

Najib’s United Malays National Organisation leads the coalition 
governing the Southeast Asian nation. Only in recent years has it 
seen a move toward competitive elections, in some districts, that 
put a premium on public speaking. The government’s lack of a clear 
message, compounded by a series of false leads on the plane’s 
whereabouts and questions on coordination, risks undermining its 
image internationally.

“They’re handling a huge global issue as if it was domestic 
politics,” said Clive Kessler, Emeritus Professor of Sociology and 
Anthropology at the University of New South Wales in Sydney, who has 
analyzed the nation’s politics for half a century. “With the 
cause of the disappearance still unknown you can understand the need 
for discretion and caution but it’s being perceived in Malaysia 
and elsewhere in the region as a bid to hide the truth.”

‘Doesn’t Work’

Najib’s administration is sending the message that people should 
let the “government tell them what they need to know, when they 
need to know it, and not before,” Kessler said. “That’s the 
way they’ve acted for generations and they are starting to find 
out it doesn’t work anymore.”

Many newspapers and television networks in Malaysia are controlled 
by the government directly or indirectly. And Najib, 60, has yet to 
make good on a pledge to replace the nation’s Sedition Act with 
legislation that would protect free speech while preventing 
incitement of religious or ethnic hatred. The law, which dates back 
to 1948 when Malaysia was under British control, mandates jail 
sentences of at least three years for words deemed seditious, 
including those that “excite dissatisfaction” against the 
government.

Government-controlled Malaysian Airlines said in a statement 
yesterday it would “continue to be transparent in communicating 
with the general public via the media” on all matters affecting 
Flight 370.

Stolen Passports

Nations searching for the plane had little to go on with no distress 
calls, emergency-beacon signals, bad weather or other signs why an 
airliner would lose touch in one of the safest phases of flight. The 
discovery that two passengers boarded the missing flight using 
stolen passports raised concern about Malaysia’s immigration 
security practices.

“The Malaysian side cannot shirk its responsibilities,” the 
Global Times, a Chinese government-controlled newspaper, said in an 
editorial on March 10. “The initial response from Malaysia was not 
swift enough. There are loopholes in the work of Malaysia Airlines 
and security authorities.”

Faced with pressure from families of the 153 Chinese nationals who 
were on the flight, Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Qin Gang for 
a second day yesterday noted the lack of progress in finding the 
Boeing Co. 777-200.

“We once again request and urge the Malaysia side to enhance and 
strengthen rescue and searching efforts,” Qin told reporters in 
Beijing.

Chinese Trade

“The Chinese government is under quite a lot of pressure,” said 
Xu Liping, senior fellow at the National Institute of International 
Strategy at the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences in Beijing. 
Ordinary people in China feel the investigation “has not been 
professional.”

Broader ties between Malaysia and China probably won’t suffer, he 
said, citing a phone conversation between Chinese Premier Li Keqiang 
and Najib on March 8 about the missing flight. “This channel has 
been unimpeded.”

China accounted for 8.262 billion ringgit ($2.52 billion) of 
Malaysia’s exports in January, the second-largest amount after 
Singapore. Malaysia approved $920 million of foreign investment from 
China in the manufacturing sector in 2013, up from $646 million the 
year earlier, according to the Malaysian Investment Development 
Authority. The Malaysia market has not shown much reaction this week 
to the missing plane, with the FTSE Bursa Malaysia KLCI Index down 
0.2 percent this week.

Cautious Personality

It is understandable that Najib doesn’t want a high profile in 
this situation given his cautious personality, according to Joseph 
Liow, associate dean of the S. Rajaratnam School of International 
Studies in Singapore.

“He’s not one who would go to the front of the camera and do 
lots of chest thumping and wave the flag and all that without being 
certain that there’s substantive” progress in the investigation, 
he said. “Hisham is very different from his cousin. He’s someone 
who is not uncomfortable with the limelight,” he said, referring 
to Hishammuddin.

Hishammuddin, 52, has been the acting minister since a general 
election last May. He is unable to formally take the role given 
internal coalition rules on which party takes particular posts in 
cabinet.

Other Asian leaders have faced questions for not reacting to crises 
immediately. Philippine President Benigno Aquino was criticized for 
taking two days to visit victims of Super Typhoon Haiyan last year. 
So was China’s former premier, Wen Jiabao, when he took more than 
two weeks to visit the site of the country’s worst snow storms in 
50 years in 2008.

Delegating Tasks

In the U.S., President George W. Bush was criticized for his 
handling of damage caused by Hurricane Katrina in 2005 after he 
remained on vacation as New Orleans flooded. He cut short the break 
by two days to survey the damage from the air, something he later 
said was a “huge mistake” since it made him look “detached and 
uncaring.”

Najib needs to assure Malaysians and the international community 
that his government is doing all it can, said Vishnu Varathan, an 
economist at Mizuho Bank Ltd. in Singapore.

“What could have been done was the prime minister delegating the 
transport secretary to locating the plane and assigning one other 
person in charge of investigating the security breach and another to 
handle international relations,” he said. “It’s not easy to 
convey all that is happening in the background and the government 
needs to highlight these things.”

Airline Statement

Compounding the image that authorities in charge of the 
investigation are struggling to communicate effectively, Malaysian 
Airlines issued three versions of a press statement yesterday to 
correct several errors. One was a reference to an “expensive” 
rescue operation, which it meant to call “extensive.”

While he has remained silent on the details of the investigation, 
Najib postponed a trip to Mauritius, according to Malaysia’s 
state-run news service, Bernama. He also met the families of the 
crew from the missing plane at Kuala Lumpur International Airport, 
his press office said on Twitter on March 8.

“I assure you we are doing everything possible within our 
means,” Najib said on Twitter on March 9. “We thank you for your 
prayers, assistance and show of solidarity.”

Najib’s office directed queries on China’s concerns about the 
handling of the incident to authorities involved in the 
investigation.

‘Hisham’s Test’

Hishammuddin, who is also defense minister, was elected a vice 
president of UMNO in October, putting him in line to possibly 
succeed Najib. He is the nephew of Malaysia’s second prime 
minister, Najib’s father, Abdul Razak Hussein.

“It’s a lack of experience, anybody would be tested,” said 
Bridget Welsh, a political science professor at Singapore Management 
University. “This is Hisham’s test, and Najib’s government’s 
test.”

Former Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad, who led the country through 
the 1998 Asian financial crisis, “was a stronger leader,” said 
RSIS’s Liow.

Mahathir responded with capital controls when investors fled Asian 
economies during the crisis. He called billionaire financier George 
Soros a “moron” who was trying to destroy growth through 
speculative attacks on the currency.

--With assistance from Chris Blake in Bangkok, Henry Sanderson and 
Xin Zhou in Beijing and Karl Lester M. Yap in Manila.