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The opposition against the colonist in Malaysia was of two types , that is , opposition with bloodshed and opposition through peaceful means.
Which type of opposition would you have supported and why???
NURUL BADRIAH BINTI
Number 3 :
The opposition against the colonist in
Malaysia was of two types , that is ,
opposition with bloodshed and opposition
through peaceful means.
Which type of opposition would you have
supported and why???
to send colonists to or establish a colony in an
to settle in an area as colonists.
to transform a community into a colony.
the act of colonizing; the establishment of
to take control of an area by any means.
~ I would support the opposition through bloodshed
because everything is fair in war. There is no rules in
war for me. From the history point of view, the struggle
for independence can be divided into two phases that is
a)the struggle with bloodshed and
b)the struggle through negotiation that is through
~ The first phase of struggle had seen many people
killed. The second phase had witnessed the efforts to
avoid bloodshed in which many associations were
formed and the mass media were utilized to stir the
spirit of nationalism.
Do you still remember how
long does Malaysia had
been colonized by foreign
Approximately, it is about 446 years. From Portuguese, Dutch,
Japanese, Communistand finally British, there were many
struggles and bloodshed in order to gain independence from the
foreign forces. The European Colonization of Malaysia started in
year 1511, when the Portuguese captured Malacca. The
Portuguese were in turn defeated in 1641 by the Dutch, who
colonized until the advert of British in 1824. During the World
War II, Japanese had colonized Malaysia too in 1941 – 1945.
These left many European and Japanese influences in Malaysia
Throughout the era of colonization, many efforts were taken in
earnest to free the country from the foreign powers. The local
inhabitants (especially the Malays) constantly opposed the
The Bloodshed Struggle
The bloody struggle began since the Portuguese occupied
Malacca in 1511 until the beginning of the 20th century.
The people fought the colonists by using arms. It occurred
in every state due to the colonists’ action that imposed
excessive tax rates, violated Malay customs and religions
of the local population, restricted the higher officials’
source of income from taxes and oppressed the people.
For an instance, in Pahang, Tok Gajah and Dato’ Bahaman
launched a holy war when the British resident introduced
the post of tax collector and magistrate. Another example
is the struggle of Tok Janggut in Kelantan when the British
imposed taxes on the local people.
The Portuguese and Dutch
Portuguese colonized Malacca in 1511 under the lead of
Alfonso de Albuquerque.
Their objective was to control the maritime trade in the east
and to spread Christianity.
However, they could not expand their power due to
inconsistency of their trading policy oppression over people
The Malays who were mainly Muslims viewed them as enemies
of Islam, thus launched series of attacks against them.
Among their traces left in the country are Eurasian
community, Catholics teachings, the Romanized writing,
language, terminologies (almari, jandela, tuala).
The Portuguese and Dutch
The Dutch defeated Portuguese and took
over Malacca in 1641.
Their main objective was to control the tin
ore in Malay Peninsula.
After the Anglo-Dutch treaty of 1824,
Malacca was passed over to British.
No much impact recorded from the
Portuguese and the Dutch colonization on
The British Colonization
There is a long story about the British colonization. Let us
summarize their colonization in a chronology:
1786 : Francis Light founded Penang
1819 : Stamford Raffles founded Singapore
1824 : The signing of the Anglo-Dutch Treaty between the
British and the Dutch in which Malacca was passed over to the
1826 : The combination of Penang, Malacca and Singapore
under one administration which was called the Straits
1841 : James Brooke took over Sarawak
1874 : British interfere the Malay state affairs of Perak after
the signing of Pangkor Treaty and also their intervention in
Sungai Ujong, Negri Sembilan
1878: British took over Sabah from the King of Brunei
1888: British intervened the affairs of Pahang
1896: British formed the Federated Malay States that put Perak, Selangor,
Negri Sembilan and Pahang under one administration
1909: Siam (Thailand) handed over Kedah, Perlis, Kelantan, and Terengganu
to British under the Bangkok Treaty and put them under one Administration
which was called the Non-Federated Malay States
1914: British intervention in Johor when Johor accepted a British advisor
1945: The establishment of the British Military Administration (BMA)
1946: The establishment of Malayan Union (MU)
1948: The establishment of the Federation of Malaya to replace the
1957: The independence of Malaya
Do you know why the
British could easily
interfere the affairs
of the Malay States
Internal weaknesses of the states such as unrest
and civil war.
No unity among the people.
The abandon of economic resources such as tin
ore and agriculture products found in these
The strong competition among western powers for
colonize as much as colonies to meet the quest of
industrial revolution in the West.
The British wanted to secure their trade business
in this region.
Reaction towards the Western
The local inhabitants did not happy with the
colonization, thus they fought the colonialists.
The Johor Kingdom, for example, launched war
repeatedly against the Portuguese from 1511-1596
to win back Malacca from the Portuguese and the
same resistance also given to the Dutch as well as
In which the people used arms to free themselves
from the control of colonialists.
Do you know why the
people opposed the
The factors of their opposition can be
summarized as follow:
Local rulers and leaders lost power and control over their
Exploitation of national resources by the colonists and
their control over the taxation system that had become
the source of income of local leaders
The colonists did not understand the local customs and
customary practices such as slavery and the tradition of
hunting for human heads in Sarawak.
When the colonists tried to eradicate those practices, the
local people opposed them.
The Japanese Colonization
The Japanese occupied Malaya from 15th of
February 1942 to 15th of August 1945
(approximately three and a half years).
The occupied the whole country and Singapore
within 70 days.
One of the interesting war tactics was using
bicycle even in the jungles and villages.
Their main aim was to establish a New Great East
They promised to give independence to certain
South East Asian countries.
Among the impacts of the Japanese
Social impact :-
Their occupation worsened the racial relationship as they
against the Chinese and on the side of the Malays.
As a result, the Chinese looked at the Malays as their
For an example, when the Japanese used the police force
(mainly Malays) to fight the MPAJA (mainly Chinese) had
caused racial friction and tension between the Chinese
and the Malays.
After the defeat of the Japanese in the World War II,
MPAJA took over the country for fourteen days and they
took revenge on the Malays whom they accused of
supporting the Japenese.
Economic impact :-
The country had experienced a very bad economic
During their invasion, they had destroyed many
Inflation became rampant and it caused hardship
to the live of the people.
Political impact :-
The Japanese administration was a misery and
nightmare to the people.
The misery had raised political awareness among
The Japanese slogan “Asia for Asians” had
attracted the Malays and stirred them to get
independence for their land and to build their
The Chinese, however, established an association
called Malayan Peoples’ Anti-Japanese Army
(MPAJA) to fight the Japanese.
The Era of Emergency
The era is closely related to the development of
communist ideology in the country.
It lasted for 12 years. Through the activities of Malayan
Communist Party (MCP) who were mainly Chinese, they
tried to instill and spread the communist ideology among
After the World War II ended, some of the MCP guerrillas
hid in jungles and formed Malaysian Races Liberation Army
(MRLA) or better known as Three Stars (Bintang Tiga).
Their aim was to establish the Communist Republic of
The communist ideology was not accepted by the
majority of the population.
Do you know why the
people did not accept
the ideology ???
The ideology against the Islamic teachings
because it denied the existence of God.
Many Chinese were more interested in economic
activities and to focus on improving the economy.
They did not want to involve in the guerrilla
activities. To secure the interest of the Chinese in
this country, they established Malayan Chinese
The climax of the communist guerillas activities
happened in 1948 after the Calcutta Resolution in
which they launched attacks on rubber estates,
tine mines, police station and general public
especially the Europeans.
Many people were dead. As a result, the British
government came out with some steps to wipe
out the guerilla activities.
The steps can be summarized as follow :-
a) The British government declared state of
emergency and enacted Emergency Law
16 June 1948 : Declaration of emergency in Perak & Johor
17 June 1948 : Declaration of emergency on the whole
The enactment of Emergency Law 1948:
- outlawed the MCP
-gave powers to police and soldiers to arrest and detain
communist suspects without court trial
Registration System was introduced in which citizens aged
12 years and above must register and own an identity card
b) The Briggs Plan
Introduced by Sir Harold Briggs
To relocate the squatter areas near to forest to a
new village in order to restrict the Chinese from
supplying food, medicine and information to the
communist guerillas. About 400,000 Chinese were
relocated to 400 new villages.
The plan succeeded in eradicating communist
c) Use of Military Force
Sir Gerald Templer used army force to fight the
He recruited 67,000 Malay special soldiers and
formed home guards systems with 210,000
He also sought assistance from the
More aggressive attacks were launched against
d) Launch Psychological Warfare
Sir Gerald Templer took the following measures:
i) Made easier for non-Malays to obtain citizenship.
ii) Award pardon to large number of MCP members who
iii) Reward people who supplied information about communists
iv) Distribute pamphlets calling communist guerillas to
v) Introduced “white and black areas”. White areas indicated
free communist areas while black areas were the opposite.
vi) Introduce curfews system in the areas where the guerillas
The warfare succeeded in ending the communist activities
and bringing back people to work together.
e) The Baling Negotiation 1955
The MCP lastly decided to negotiate with the
British after series of steps taken by the British to
contain their activities
The negotiation failed as the MCP rejected the
government’s counter offer and refused to lay
down their arms
The era of emergency left many
negative impacts on the country.
Among the impacts are:
Huge number of people killed
The infrastructures, properties were destroyed
The economy was cripple
New villages (mainly Chinese) were equipped with
facilities. This had created hatred among the
Malays towards the Chinese. Thus, social gap
The struggle for independence can be divided into two phases the
struggle with bloodshed and the struggle through negotiation. The first
phase of struggle had seen many people killed. The second phase had
witnessed the efforts to avoid bloodshed in which many associations
were formed and the mass media were utilized to stir the spirit of
The struggle became earnest when the British introduced the Malayan
Union specially the Malays who had shown the strongest opposition due
to the erosion of the Malay rulers’ powers and sovereignty as well as the
Malays’ rights. To make their struggle more effective, many political
parties were formed with various objectives. Some were formed on
ethnicity base and some were cross ethnicity.
Even though the British government had received much opposition,
they were still reluctant to grant independence to the country because
of the problem of unity among the people.
Among those four colonists, it was the British and
Japanese who left the greatest impact on the country. The
British wisely intervened in the administration of the Malay
states and introduced different forms of administration such
as Resident System, the Federated Malay States and the Non-
Federated Malay States. It was the British who created plural
society with different economic, social and political
The Japanese on the other hand, had created tension
among the people especially between the Chinese and the
Malays. It was the Japanese who driven the Chinese to form
communist guerillas. The activities of communists became
rampant until the British government had to declare the
emergency throughout the country. The era of emergency
had witnessed the loss of lives and the destruction of
property. However, the emergency was also a blessing
because it expedited the process of achieving independence.