COMMENT | Malaysia’s race/communal politics traces its roots to the Japanese occupation and the immediate aftermath in 1945. That was 75 years ago. The Umno-dominant polity began in the aftermath of the May 1969 crisis, and this was 51 years ago.
A period of 14 years of very cordial ethnic relations and a sense of “Malaysianness” pervaded the country between 1991, when Dr Mahathir Mohamad proposed “Vision 2020” and “Bangsa Malaysia”, and when Hishammuddin Hussein unsheathed his keris and waved it publicly in 2005. Indeed, the very racial framing of politics we see today actually began in 2005, some 15 years ago. It is not something that has to be inherent to Malaysian politics.
It is time for a great reset. Here are some basic frameworks for the political community to consider.
First, Middle Malaysia
There is a need for political leaders and opinion leaders who aspire for Malaysia to be a stable democracy to realise that to defeat the extreme positions is to stand steadfastly in the middle...