The Malayan Emergency

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The Malayan Emergency was a battle between the British and the Malayan Races Liberation Army. Despite being in a less focused Asian region in the 1940 and 1950s, the Emergency played an important part in British military history. This essay will focus on reviews on works done on Malayan emergency. The essay will also focus on the important factors that are said to be the factors for the victory of Britain over the insurgents – ‘Winning Hearts and Minds’, Korean War Boom and General Templer. This essay will also focus on a less known, yet an important part of Malayan Emergency – the biochemical warfare conducted by the British against the insurgents. The Malayan Emergency despite seeming to be between Great Britain and the Malayan Races Liberation Army (MNLA) was a battle that involved more than Britain and MNLA. One major issue that is discussed in most essays and books is the Counter-Insurgency or better known as COIN. One of the main principles of COIN is the ‘winning of hearts and minds’ as shown in the book Hearts and Minds: A People’s History of Counterinsurgency edited by Hannah Gurman1. Out of around 90 books and articles, at least 15 of those touch on topics related to Malayan Emergency. Winning hearts and minds is one of the most widely discussed topics when talking about Malayan Emergency. Winning hearts and minds is the concept of using non-military methods to prevail over the opposing force. It has since been repeated in history from the Malayan Emergency to wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. Winning the hearts and minds of the people of Malaya was one of the main methods used by General Templer. The high emphasis placed on winning hearts and minds is seen in the following quote by General Templer, “the answer lies i... ... middle of paper ... ... the photos below. The Malayan Emergency or the Anti-British National Liberation War as called by Malayan National Liberation Army was an important incident that occurred right after the Second World War. Britain had to show that it was still in power over its colonies despite losing them to Japan during the war. The fight against the communist was also necessary since Malaya could have been used as a base for the spread of communism through South East Asia if the communist were victorious. At the same time, Britain had to realize its weakening power over the colonies and had to let the colonies stand-alone. Despite early setbacks, Britain eventually managed to triumph against the communists in Malaya. The factors that were discussed in this essay are seen as important factors, which contributed to the British forces’ triumph over the insurgent communist in Malaya.
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