Most of us like action movies. The explosions, the guns blazing, the mayhem and usually the good guys win and they look cool doing it. For a couple of hours we escape into a fantasy world of thrills without any bodily risks or consequences.
But as recent incidents around the world has demonstrated, it is completely awful when it happens in real life and impact real people.
This last couple of weeks, a couple of Hollywood type stories played out on the streets of my city, Kuala Lumpur; stories with drama, action, suspense and intrigue.
Pastor Raymond Koh was driving his car on an errand to deliver a food gift to a friend who was about to travel abroad. At least three black SUVs screeched in, blocking off the road and boxing in his car. Men with black balaclava masks poured out. A couple of them stopped oncoming traffic and another was seen apparently filming the incident. Pastor Raymond was forced into one of the SUVs and the three vehicles then sped away together. He has been missing since the 13th of February.
Pastor Raymond is active in a number of Christian charities and was the founder of Harapan Kommuniti (Community Hope) which holds free tuition classes for children and English lessons for adults from low income groups. In 2011 though, the Selangor Islamic Religious Department (Jais), in a controversial move, raided a community thanksgiving and fundraising dinner at a church and accused Pastor Raymond’s organisation of proselytising Muslims.
There has been no ransom demand or any communication from the abductors and despite numerous eyewitnesses and CCTV footage, the police have not reported any progress in their investigation.
Many Malaysians (including me) have been praying daily for his safe return.
Our international airport was the ground on which our tale of international intrigue and skullduggery occurred; real James Bond stuff. A Korean man traveling under the name of Kim Choi was making his way across the airport concourse to catch his flight to Macao when two young women approached him from different directions and appear to reach from behind and cover his face with a chemically laced cloth. They then left as quickly in opposite directions. After seeking help, the man collapses and dies shortly later.