In the name of national security, some Singaporeans seem willing to pay any price to secure life and property and there were calls in the national press for tougher measures against would-be terrorists and their supporters.
Singaporeans must consider carefully how these safeguards will be policed because the proposals that will keep the Lion City from harm are the same instruments that a future despot could wield against his citizens with impunity.
Without an impartial check-and-balance to weed out potential abuse, the measures proposed by Singaporean parliamentarians and civic-minded citizens could lead to frightful consequences for people unfairly branded enemies of the state.
The trigger for this week's security debate was the revelation by Singaporean Home Affairs Minister K. Shanmugam on how terror suspect Mas Selamat Kastari eluded the law after he escaped from a high security detention centre in February 2008. We learned that his relatives gave him safe harbour and sheltered him from Singapore's largest manhunt.