For The Middle Ground, I reviewed Dr. Poh Soo Kai’s “Living In A Time Of Deception” – a former political detainee for 17 years – and collected some of his references to the late founding Prime Minister Lee Kuan Yew. Read more (Still left: Ex-political detainee Poh Soo Kai’s political memoir), and here is an excerpt:
Launched earlier this year on February 13, Living In A Time Of Deception offers one of these perspectives. Penned by ex-political detainee Poh Soo Kai, he offers a first-hand account of his involvement during the anti-colonial movement in the 1950s and 60s, premised upon archival materials and newspapers, memoirs of the late Mr Lee Kuan Yew, as well as his own memory. Using these documentary references is “necessary” – in the words of historian, Hong Lysa, one of two editors of the book, in the introductory chapter – because “[Dr Poh] is practically overturning the received wisdoms of the [People’s Action Party (PAP)] Story.”
Comet In Our Sky: Lim Chin Siong In History was published in 2001, and it is one of the many books about the events of the 1950s and 1960s which Dr Poh referred to in his 408-page political memoir. In addition, he was also an editor for The 1963 Operation Coldstore In Singapore: Commemorating 50 Years, a book documenting the joint Malaya-Singapore operation which saw the arrest of 113 Barisan Sosialis party and labour union leaders, including Mr Lim and Dr Poh.
Dr Poh – a former Assistant Secretary General of the Barisan Sosialis – disputed the official report which stated that those who were arrested were “hard core organisers [or] collaborators of the Communist conspiracy,” with “armed struggle” remaining a threat.