Indonesia and Malaysia have many similarities. Each has a predominantly Muslim population. Indonesia has been under a dominant political party Golkar for 32 years, while Malaysia’s UMNO has been ruling the country for the past 42 years.
So despised is Uncle Sam globally that too close an identification with him can spell the death-knell for any political figure, especially in the Muslim world.
Malaysia has been taken by storm since Anwar Ibrahim, the relatively youthful former deputy prime minister, was unceremoniously sacked on September 2.
‘Reformasi’ or reform, has become the rallying cry of opponents of prime minister Mahathir Mohamed in Malaysia since his unceremonious sacking of deputy prime minister and finance minister Anwar Ibrahim on September 2.
It was not too long ago that the term Melayu Baru was the buzz word among the intelligentsia. In the mid-199Os, practically everyone was talking about the great social and cultural phenomenon known as the ‘New Malay’ generation.
The thinly veiled reference by the Malaysian Prime Minister, Mahathir Mohammed, to the alleged role of George Soros in the precipitate fall of currencies in the ASEAN region belies a desperation which is beginning to grip the erstwhile over confident leaders of the emerging economies of the Far East.
The Malaysian government agreed to allow the Israeli cricket team play in an international cricket tournament in Kuala Lumpur which is participated by 22 countries. A notable exception is Pakistan which has one of the world’s best cricket teams. Pakistan is boycotting the tournament on the ground of Israeli participation.
Juvenile delinquency, a phrase hitherto associated with America and the rest of the West, is making its presence felt in Malaysia. “Throughout the nation, a total of 11 cases involving juvenile delinquents were recorded daily in 1993.
The denim-clad host of the music programme on the Metrovision channel looks like any other presenter on MTV. Her youthful good looks and her affected American accent make her identity seem truly universal but also bland and indistinguishable.