Infighting within the ruling party PAP has worsened with Lee Hsien Loong’s diplomat Bilahari Kausikan taunting Lee Kuan Yew-era diplomat Kishore Mahbubani saying the latter has nothing substantial:
“Anyway, when people say someone is uncivil, sometimes it means no more than that they don’t agree with an opinion but have no effective substantive rebuttal. Besides, if you state an opinion in public, you must be prepared for it to be attacked robustly; I don’t take offence if someone attacks me robustly.”
The infighting went public when LKY-era diplomat Kishore Mahbubani criticised Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong for speaking insensitively about China on the South China Seas territorial dispute.
Lee Hsien Loong’s ambassador-at-large Bilahari Kausikan and Law Minister K Shanmugam then defended their master slamming the dean of Lee Kuan Yew School “muddled and mendacious”.
Professor Kishore Mahbubani in-turn criticised the diplomat for being uncivil and the current Lee Hsien Loong administration for “squandering the founding fathers’ hard work” on international diplomacy.
Ambassador Bilahari Kausikan today hit back criticising the LKY-era diplomat for having nothing substantial, and also hit at China:
“When the Chinese try to force this appellation on you in ways subtle and not so subtle, you must resist because it is existential, it’s a matter of survival.”