Singapore—Former NMP Calvin Cheng wrote a social media post to assure the country, especially young people today, that Singapore is well prepared for the current coronavirus crisis.
His post, an open letter called “Keeping Calm Since August 10th 1965,” came on Tuesday, one day after Malaysia announced a two-week lockdown in an effort to curb the rising numbers of people infected with Covid-19, which sparked a spate of panic buying in Singapore, primarily out of fear of insufficient food supply, despite immediate assurances from the Government that Singapore’s food supply is enough for three months.
"Keeping Calm Since August 10th 1965"My fellow Singaporeans.In the next few weeks, it may look like the world is…
Mr Cheng’s reassuring words have gone viral, getting over 4,000 shares in less than a day.
Perhaps what makes his post particularly resonant with netizens is that he addresses young people in particular, who have not seen this kind of global crisis in their lives and may have reason to fear or panic at this unprecedented crisis.
The former NMP makes the point that if there is any country is ready for a disaster, it’s Singapore.
He writes, “In fact, we have been preparing for disaster since August 10th 1965.”
Mr Cheng then took readers on an inspiring history course, writing, “When a nation is born from ashes, reliant on the country that just kicked you out for even food and water, you prepare for the world to end from DAY ONE.
We have been stockpiling fuel. Stockpiling food. We are mostly self-reliant on water, even if our neighbours laugh at us for drinking our own piss. (WHO’S LAUGHING NOW?!) We have been stockpiling medical supplies. They are stockpiled in secret warehouses all across the island, which you probably walk past every day. You don’t see it but trust me, it is all there in places bigger than the biggest supermarket warehouses you have ever seen.
Most of all, we have been stockpiling money.”
Mr Cheng lambasted those who, over the years, have belittled the ‘siege mentality’ as unhealthy for the country, thinking that it was a time to relax. And many of the youth, who grew up in a time of relative prosperity, would tend to think so.
However, Mr Cheng defends the wisdom of Singapore’s forefathers, writing,
“Well, when your country is founded on the premise that it won’t survive (and even Malaysia thought so), you have to live every day as if there isn’t going to be a tomorrow.
You see action teams all over the island reacting fast.
Medical facilities ready to go.
Supermarket shelves re-stocked overnight.”
He went on to list all the actions being done in response to the lockdown, such as the preparation of accommodations for Malaysian workers who are stranded here due to the lockdown.
And lest people think that Singapore was caught unawares, he writes,
“You really think we reacted overnight?
No, these are plans laid out carefully over 55 years, every day living like we did since August 10th 1965.”
Moreover, he added that not only is food in adequate supply, but also ammunition.
“And if worst comes to worst, if it’s every country for itself, we have ammunition stockpiled. Our F16s are ready to fly back to protect us within minutes. Our NSmen who might complain every time there is reservist, stand ready to defend this island against whoever thinks can take advantage of a global crisis. You come, we make sure you get a sock in the face you don’t forget. Did this happen overnight? No. We have been prepared since August 10th 1965.”
Even if the world should end, the country is “one of the world’s safest and best-prepared places.”
He added, “If you see everything that is being done and you are not amazed, then you have no idea how prepared we are,” urging Singaporeans to stick together so that “we will live through this unscathed.” —/TISG
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