Najib to Obama: M’sia strongly believes in democracy


Would you believe it? When Obama phoned, Najib told him that Malaysia strongly believes “in the ideals and principles of democracy, including accountability and transparency”.

I wonder if he mentioned how 900 police and riot police personnel turned up to try and stop the DAP from holding a dinner in Klang on 21 June and in the end, carted away the PA system and forbade the organisers from making speeches.

Najib also discussed Obama’s plan to close down the Guantanamo detention camp and indicated Malaysia’s willingness to accept two Malaysian detainees held there. Would they receive a fair trial in Malaysia’s democracy?

In line with Malaysia’s professed strong belief in democracy, would the Malaysian government similarly shut down the Kamunting Detention Centre for good?

This is what Najib had to say in his blog about his phone call with Obama:

President Obama
Saturday, 27 June 2009

Last night at about 9.12pm, I was pleased to hold a telephone conversation that lasted about 20 minutes with my American counterpart, President Barack Obama. It was our first conversation with each other as Heads of State and we exchanged congratulatory wishes on our respective appointments. I expressed that I was looking forward to working closely with him. President Obama graciously acknowledged my ability to serve as Prime Minister based on my extensive background in the public service.

I extended an invitation to him to visit Malaysia so that he may observe how Islam is applied in a plural, multi-ethnic society like Malaysia, following the President’s recognition of Kuala Lumpur as an example of a progressive Muslim-majority country in his recent address to the Muslim world in Cairo. I explained to him that Malaysia shares significant common grounds with the United States of America in that we strongly believe in the ideals and principles of democracy, including accountability and transparency. I also spoke about the initiation of the 1Malaysia concept and how the sense of togetherness and belonging will help Malaysians move forward with a common purpose.

President Obama also raised the subject of the global economic crisis, to which I explained how Malaysia has been affected by it. We also discussed on revisiting the Free Trade Agreement at an appropriate juncture. Our conversation also touched on issues regarding North Korea and Iran, and in particular regarding nuclear development programmes, money laundering and terrorist activities.

As President Obama had previously stated his intention to close down the Guantanamo detention centre, I sought for him to clarify his position on the matter and stated our willingness to work with the United States to arrange for the transfer of the two Malaysian detainees currently held there. I also extended Malaysia’s offer of civil cooperation with the Provincial Reconstruction Team in Afghanistan if it is required.

The conversation left me with a sense of optimism towards our relationship with the United States of America. I look forward to renewing Malaysia’s ties with the United States under President Obama’s administration and hope to explore solutions and opportunities to mutually benefit both countries in the immediate and long-term future.

And this is what the White House had to say about the phone call:

The President spoke with Prime Minister Najib earlier today and expressed their shared commitment to strengthening our bilateral relationship. They discussed the ongoing global economic crisis, and stressed the importance of growth and sound regulatory systems in both their economies. The President described U.S. concerns over proliferation and discussed North Korea and Iran, stressing the importance of implementation of UN Security Council resolutions. They also discussed ways to contribute to reconstruction and stability in Afghanistan.

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joo lee
joo lee
29 Jun 2009 11.45am


just a note to point out that the prime minister’s English is not up to par. he uses the big words but fails when it comes to grammar.

anna brella
anna brella
29 Jun 2009 1.54am

Anil, although I accept it is your right to censor as you think fit here, may I ask why you have deleted the “excrement” I used in para 6 but not the “crap” I used in para 10?

Thanks in advance for any reply.

S***, I must have missed that! 🙂
Seriously though, I just skim through comments, so there will be inconsistencies. – Anil

anna brella
anna brella
29 Jun 2009 12.10am

1. “….with my American counterpart, President Barack Obama. It was our first conversation with each other as Heads of State…” …er….”my counterpart”? My current understanding is that the Head of State of the USA is the President and the Head of State of Malaysia is the Yang Di Pertuan Agong. 2. “…visit Malaysia so that he may observe how Islam is applied in a plural, multi-ethnic society like Malaysia,…” Telling isn’t it how NAR states that “Islam is applied” in Malaysia as opposed to saying that Islam is practised in Malaysia. 3. “…we strongly believe in the ideals and principles… Read more »

28 Jun 2009 5.15pm

Malaysia believes in the motion of democracy but not in the principles of democracy. Many countries hold elections, including country like Zimbabwe. But it does not mean Mugabe believes in democracy. It does not mean Zambry believes in democracy.

28 Jun 2009 1.55pm

Najib’s counterpart in the US government is not Obama.
It’s Hilary Clinton.

The Malaysian head of state is DYMM Yang Di Pertuan Agong.
It’s never the Prime Minister.

In the Malaysian Protocol, the PM ranks behind the King and his consort and the sovereigns and TYTs of every state in the country and their consorts.

28 Jun 2009 1.26pm


Can you get Obama’s blog or email address…????
Better he hear from me first….!!!

Sorry, can’t stop laughing at our idiocracy…!!!

28 Jun 2009 1.17pm

A busy leader normally speaks less and to the point. The version released by the White House is the right version.

francis ngu
francis ngu
28 Jun 2009 10.54am

Excuse the PM for doing smart international marketting, selling 1 democratic and transparent Malaysia. The only problem for the PM is that world is surely smarter than us in deciding whether it is an authentic or a totally fraudulent product, whether the product should be signed into any future FTAs.

What more, the world will be asking, “Is Malaysia serious about practising her proclaimed lofty ideals, or the very contrarary ?”

28 Jun 2009 12.24am

yesterday i returned Mrs Obama. she enquired whats the rave about 1Malaysia and it took me more than 15 mins to explain the concetp to her but unfortunately she seemed more confused and couldnt comprehend how unity in one race while others are left out can lead to national unity. it must be my inadequate command of language and i apologised profusely to her … She also enquired about our nation’s biz and I said the economy is doing well according to our leaders though statiscally its minus 6%. I aso told her the service industry is booming with mushrooming… Read more »

27 Jun 2009 10.02pm

Aiyah, democracy Malaysia’s style lah!!!!!

That’s democracy to our “beloved Premier” lah.

What’s his 1 malaysia???? You know I know lah!!!!!!

Semua cakap tak serupa bikin lah!!!!!

Let’s wait and …!!!

27 Jun 2009 9.10pm

The subject of Altantuya was not brought up because the US Ambassador to Malaysia may have warned Obama that he is not allowed to mention the “she who shall not be named” in the phone conversation…. 🙂

27 Jun 2009 9.06pm

Najis probably don’t understand half the issues discussed and asked his expensive Ethos friends to the write up in his blog

27 Jun 2009 8.05pm

If u pay attention to every speech BeeNd’s man.. u ll hv a good laugh every time..

27 Jun 2009 7.31pm

I believe in democracy, not Najib.

Leong Yook Kong
Leong Yook Kong
27 Jun 2009 6.51pm

It is unbelievable. It is just 44 days too late that Obama congratulated Najib as a PM. Did Obama spoke to the RM150 million minister of nurseries since they are working as a team?

27 Jun 2009 6.45pm

how come the two accounts of the conversation are totally different?

next time, they should just record the speech and upload online.

najib’s version is so full of bulls***!

27 Jun 2009 6.03pm

How come Obama didn’t ask to talk with Grosmah? For sure it would have been a far racier conversation 😉