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David Chew

For David Chew's latest contributions to The Japan Times, see below:

Commentary / World Sep 13, 2002

Malaysia's security law loses some of its Draconian bite

KUALA LUMPUR -- The focus of attention surrounding a controversial Malaysian security law has shifted to Deputy Prime Minister Abdullah Badawi after the country's highest court allowed an appeal of five opposition detainees in a dramatic decision last Friday. The legislation allows detention of ...

Commentary / World Aug 16, 2002

Ethnic Chinese dilemma

SINGAPORE -- In a new twist to an ongoing controversy surrounding a proposal to change Malaysia's education policy, the two main Chinese components of the ruling National Front (NF) coalition government, have found themselves taking the same position as the opposition parties. This places ...

Commentary / World Jul 12, 2002

By-elections give Abdullah chance to prove his mettle

SINGAPORE -- For Malaysia's deputy prime minister, Abdullah Badawi, the sequence of two fast-moving events late last month could not have been more timely -- and dramatic. First was the shocking announcement of Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad on June 22 -- at the conclusion of ...

Commentary / World May 10, 2002

Splintered blocs in Malaysia unite on draconian law

SINGAPORE -- Malaysia's disparate opposition groups have launched a new campaign against a draconian security law in an attempt to prevent Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad from further splitting their ranks. The opposition -- comprised of the theocratic Islamic Party (PAS), the Chinese-based Democratic Action Party ...

Commentary / World Jan 25, 2002

Heightened fear of radicals gives Mahathir a big win

KANGAR, Malaysia -- Malaysian Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad has cleverly manipulated the Sept. 11 Islamic terrorist attacks in the United States and their aftermath to crush his political rivals in a crucial by-election in the north Malaysian state of Perlis over the weekend. In Saturday's ...

Commentary / World Dec 21, 2001

A dormant Islamic state concept

SINGAPORE -- Malaysia's ruling National Front coalition government has withdrawn from circulation a booklet "Malaysia Is an Islamic Country" to allay growing fears among the significant non-Muslim minority that the multiracial country which tolerates many faiths would be turned into an Islamic state. But the ...

Commentary / World Aug 24, 2001

Mahathir goes all out to remove thorn in his side

SINGAPORE -- After months of futile attempts at various kinds of measures, Malaysian Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad may have hit upon the right combination to effectively deal with a formidable political opponent -- the fundamentalist Pan-Malaysian Islamic Party (PAS). His National Front (NF) coalition government ...

Commentary / World Jul 6, 2001

Mahathir digs deep into old roots

KUALA LUMPUR -- Malaysian Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad took two hours to deliver a 21-page address at the opening ceremony of the United Malays National Organization (UMNO) assembly on June 21. During the assembly's closing session two days later, he took another two hours ...