an act of war?
An act of war? Banning sales of sand is a commercial decision, an unfriendly one at worst. Banning granite sales is similar in nature. All these are within the rights of a sovereign nation. Indonesia can choose to sell or not to sell to us. We can negotiate for a fair price, even make them an offer that they cannot refuse. But when all else fails, we find alternative sources for our supply. Then it was reported that 12 barges and 12 tugboats were arrested for carrying granite from Indonesia. And with the Indonesian Foreign Minister and Trade Minister confirming that there was no ban on granite, the cargoes were legitimate and with legal papers. They cannot be breaking any Indonesian laws. And they were carrying our flags. This wrongful seizure of our shipping vessels is a very provocative act, an act of hostility. Many countries have gone to war for such a hostile act. And this is repeated 24 times, with 24 of our boats arrested while conducting legitimate activities. Singapore cannot take this quietly. We must demand their immediate release with compensation. We must demand an apology. We must demand that the commanders involved in such hostile acts between two friendly neighbours be sacked. These are the least Singapore should do to remain a respectable sovereign nation or be forever compliant. Forget about all the acts of kindness and offering of help. These are never appreciated and regarded in most instances as acts of pretension. They are seen as an appeasement by a small nation trying to curry favours from a big nation. Singapore should reassess how it conducts its relations with its neighbours. It should be on an equal basis, cordial, friendly and mutual respect. No necessity to run like a eager beaver to offer help when help was never seen in that light.