Ex-IGP wants ‘CIA, US’ to issue denial after ridiculed for sharing satirical piece on Osama Bin Laden

Jerry Choong
Former inspector-general police Tan Sri Musa Hassan speaks at a press conference at Hotel Putra in Kuala Lumpur February 12, 2019. — Picture by Shafwan Zaidon

KUALA LUMPUR, Oct 13 — Former Inspector-General of Police Tan Sri Musa Hassan has doubled down on his remarks after he shared an article from a satirical news website on terrorist Osama Bin Laden and the United States’ Central Intelligence Agency (CIA)

Despite repeated attempts by Twitter users to point out the farcical nature of the article by The Onion, which said the CIA made a posthumous apology to Bin Laden in light of new evidence which cleared him of involvement in the September 11, 2001 attacks on the World Trade Centre in New York City, he remained adamant. 

“If the news is not true, the US government must deny it,” he said in an early response. 

When others began to mock him, or chastise him for believing in the article which could damage the police’s reputation, Musa replied that it had nothing to do with the Malaysian police. 

“If it was not broadcasted then no one would spread it around? Is it a freedom to spread false news or slander? If the answer is yes, it is an illogical freedom,” he said, essentially shifting the blame onto The Onion for writing it to begin with. 

“No wonder the world is in such chaos, for allowing such false news,” Musa added. 

As more and more Twitter users criticised the former inspector-general, he instead went on a lengthy rant about ‘irresponsible journalism’. 

“It is still slander even if one meant to be humourous or joking by saying something untrue. Satire or mockery to open society’s eyes to the truths surrounding us is beneficial. 

“People have become too ‘intelligent’ until something like this which is a joke is instead not denied as true. Whatever it is, it should be viewed positively as lately there are many theories from America which cast suspicion on the 9/11 incident,” Musa said. 

When told that The Onion’s satire is such that no one can possibly believe its contents at face value, he said this enabled irresponsible journalism. 

“Only now do I understand that writing on entertainment or comedy is not a form of journalism.

“Hopefully Onion will provide an explanation on the matter, as displayed,” Musa said. 

His responses further incensed Twitter users, some of whom continued to mock his apparent lack of knowledge about The Onion, while others continued in their attempts to inform him. 

“What is wrong? Why are you angry when an article which has nothing to do with Malaysia is shared? 

“You need to see what is being done by a country that always considered itself able in saving the world from terrorism,” Musa said. 

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