Iron claws on Malaya: the historiography of the Malayan emergency

Hack, Karl (1999). Iron claws on Malaya: the historiography of the Malayan emergency. Journal of Southeast Asian Stdies, 30(1) pp. 99–125.

DOI: https://doi.org/10.1017/S0022463400008043

Abstract

This article addresses the historiography of the Malayan Emergency (1948–60). It does so by challenging two archetypal works on the conflict: those of Anthony Short and Richard Stubbs. These argue the Emergency was locked in stalemate as late as 1951. By then, a “population control” approach had been implemented — the so-called Briggs Plan for resettling 500,000 Chinese squatters. The predominantly Chinese nature of the Malayan National Liberation Army (MNLA) had also ensured that most Malays — who constituted nearly half the 1950 population of five million — opposed the revolt. The several thousand strong Communist-led guerrillas thus laboured under severe limitations

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