Malaysia, a predominantly Sunni Muslim nation, has no diplomatic ties with Israel. And apparently if you are to be considered a good, patriotic Malaysian citizen, you must hate Israel. At least that’s the message that was recently impressed upon Jonathan Ong Ujang at Universiti Pendidikan Sultan Idris in Malaysia after he expressed his love for Israel on Facebook.
Mr. Ong posted on Facebook in response to a dust-up over a wind-surfing competition that was supposed to have taken place with teams from Malaysia and Israel. Officials in Israel who handle the procedures for their team claimed that Malaysian organizers of the event took steps to make it impossible for Israel’s athletes to compete, so they withdrew from the competition in a press release. Mr. Ong read the article and felt bad about the incident, so he left a comment for the article at the Jerusalem Post website about how sorry he was about the incident and proclaimed he personally loved Israel. Then he took to Facebook to make a lengthier post in support of Israel and his desire to see an Israeli-Palestinian peace deal.
His posts went viral and set off a fury of online shaming and protests which targeted him and the University he attends. The online shamers were so furious that University officials and possibly government authorities approached him to verify it was actually him who posted it. Mr. Ong, under pressure and possible threat, then apologized online and had to state his views did not reflect the views of the University or the Malaysian government.
He additionally assured his detractors he would not run for any position in the student government in the future as he did in the past and explained further that he did not favor Israelis over Palestinians, but was of the belief that love for one and the desire of peace for one group automatically meant you also wanted the same things for the other. Ong also expressed that he would understand it if people who knew him would no longer want to associate with him. In most of Asia, if one does anything to bring dishonor to family and friends regardless of the situation, they feel pressure to commit suicide. I hope Mr. Ong does not cave to any such pressure since in reality there was no dishonor in him saying what he said.
This incident is one splash in the worldwide rising tide of anti-Israel sentiments spreading across the globe, as predicted in Bible prophecy for the last days prior to Christ’s return. I am not foolish enough to believe that Israel is always the innocent party, but I do believe many accusations and hateful sentiments against them are overblown and/or out of line. Mr. Ong’s experience is a glimpse of where this ungodly world is headed. If one does not tow the line of taking sides against Israel, one will not be considered a responsible patriot of one’s nation nor a responsible citizen of the world.
11 Behold, all they that were incensed against thee [Israel] shall be ashamed and confounded: they shall be as nothing; and they that strive with thee shall perish.
12 Thou shalt seek them, and shalt not find them, even them that contended with thee: they that war against thee shall be as nothing, and as a thing of nought.
13 For I the Lord thy God will hold thy right hand, saying unto thee, Fear not; I will help thee. Isaiah 41
Source: M’sian student owns up to ‘I love Israel’ Facebook post with apology, plea for forgiveness, TodayOnline.com (Singapore), December 26, 2015.