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Wednesday, August 3, 2011

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What do you think about Malayan Emergency in the 40's to 60's?

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"One assignment that i did based on what i read in the books and internet articles, and i summarized it for easy understanding.. Hopefully.. BTW, does anybody read this kind of issue anymore? because i still read it... :)"
 
Malayan Emergency
Malayan Emergency which occurred in 1948 to 1960 is the conflicts between the Malayan Communist Party or Parti Komunis Malaya (PKM) by the British in Malaya. Thus, Emergency was declared in 7th July 1948.


The Cause of Emergency.
Initially, it all began after the Japanese occupation from 1942 to 1945 where the people were influenced by the Japanese during the occupation that led to having a Government that is governed by Malayans.

Beginning the withdrawal of Japanese Army at the end of World War II left the Malayan economy disrupted with problems including unemployment, low wages, and scarce and expensive food. There was considerable labour unrest and a large number of strikes occurred in 1946 through 1948 while the British administration was attempting to repair Malaya's economy quickly, especially when the revenue from Malaya's tin and rubber industries was important to Britain's own post-war recovery. Protesters were dealt harshly, by measures including arrests and deportations. In turn, protesters became increasingly militant.

On 16 June 1948, the first overt act of the war took place when three European plantation managers were killed at Sungai Siput, Perak led the government to declare an emergency in Malaya. Follow suit, PKM was banned after a month
.
PKM was banned by the British government because it was regarded as a radical political and outlaws. This has caused dissatisfaction by many of the PKM claming that
the British have forgotten their services during the Japanese opposition when they were recruited under Malayan People's Anti-Japanese Army (MPAJA),   the PKM-led guerrilla force which had been the principal resistance in Malaya against the Japanese occupation.

Hence, PKM leader transformed its policy from moderation to an aggressive counter attack, including brutal execution of the people. In the fist stage, PKM started a strike in collaboration with Union Labour, and the creation of New Democratic Youth League (Persatuan Buruh Baru). However, the strike had failed and a new law was passed by the British to weaken PKM that resulted PKM to take measure of their own by using fire arms to achieve the agenda.

Soon after Chin Peng was appointed as head of the new armed movement, several death cases were reported with the murder of 3 Kuo Min Tang Leaders (KMT) and 3 the rubber plantation manager in Europe, including an assistant, on 12th June1948 and 15th June 1948.

Steps taken to fight against communist in Malaya.

i. Emergency Order

Emergency was declared and among others include:
1. the banning of radical parties.
2. Anyone suspected of communist activities would be arrested and deported.
3. Execution is made for those who considered accomplished with the communists.

ii. Curfew

The curfew has been ordered in areas where communist influences were identified. Hence, white and black areas were introduced to simplify the process of eliminating the communist attacks with White is a communist-free area and vice versa for Black Area.

iii. Roadblock and Village Patrol

Roadblocks and Village Patrol were conducted by the Home Guards in communist-influenced area to check and arrest those without identity card and to seize the goods in their possession. The British Government has made a mandatory for all the people of Malaya to have an identity card once they are 12 years old. 


 iv. Briggs Plan

Briggs Plan was launched by Sir Henry Gurney in Malaya during the 50’s and the operations director-in-charge was Lieutenant Sir Harold Rowdon Briggs. Briggs Plan was introduced by the British colonial government to restrict the supply of food and medicines from the communist that had the agenda to topple and seize control of the current government.
 
The action was carried out by relocating the Chinese population in scattered remote areas to a resettlement area or a new village to avoid threatens by the Min Yuen movement to provide information and food and drugs for them. The aim was merely to disable Min Yuen movement. (Min Yuen means "people's movement" in Chinese, was established by the Communist Party of Malaya and
largely supported by Chinese).

These new villages fenced with barbed wire and controlled by the security forces and were equipped with facilities such as education, health services, shelter, electricity and water to facilitate the population.

Although security forces have been strengthened, but direct military action
to eliminate the communist was less successful because the communists were proned to guerrilla action.


v . Food Ration

This was a further effort by the British colonial government in the
Briggs Plan. This movement was to cripple the efforts of Min Yuen
Communist that involved the coordination and cooperation between service officers, public, police and military.



Therefore, a Committee at the national, state and district was established and under the Briggs Plan, all basic needs like food, medicines, clothing and weapons were ensured not given to the communists. This was done by allowing the residents to purchase food based on a certain amount needed only. Identity cards were also issued to control the movement of people in New Village.



iv. Psychological Warfare

Briggs Plan had an impact on the relationship between government and citizens when the outcome showed that PKM members were Chinese, while Malays were in public service as police and military.

High Commissioner for Malaya, Sir Henry Gurney held a campaign "Malayan against Communist Month 'involving 500 000 people .A rally was organized to promote the campaign by carrying banners condemning the communist violence and burning the statues of communist.

Psychological war was also made to lure the Malayan by rewarding those who notice and reveal the nest of PKM members.

Lifting of Emergency Order.

On July 31, 1960, the Emergency Order was lifted after the communist threat was significantly reduced with some withdrawn to the borders of Malaya and Thailand. Within 12 years the Order, about 1100 death tolls were reported  including 2500 civilians.

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