|Alam Melayu Coalition
Gabungan Alam Melayu (Malay)
Koalisi Alam Melayu (Indonesian)
|Anthem: "Takkan Melayu Hilang di Dunia"
Map of Alam Melayu Members
|Largest city||Jakarta, Indonesia|
|Official languages||Bahasa Malaysia
|Recognised regional languages||Javanese, Tagalog, various Malay dialects and creoles|
|Other languages||Minangkabau, Madurese, Cebuano, Batak, Batavian, other Austronesian language, West Papuan languages|
|Ethnic groups||Malay, Javanese, Dayak, Minangkabau, Batak, Balinese, Filipino, Papuans, Thais, other Austronesian goups, Melanesian ethnic groups|
Its aims are improving relations of nations in the Malay realm, and protect the Malay cultures of the nations involved.
The two founding member states are Malaysia and Indonesia, later joined by Singapore and Philippines. It consists of nations that are Malay-speaking, or have a deeply Malay-influenced culture.
The concept of a "united Malay race" originated from several nations in the Malay Archipelago. In Indonesia, Sukarno had been opposed to the creation of Malaysia, and had included all of North Borneo into an "Indonesia Raya", meaning "Greater Indonesia".
The name "Alam Melayu" itself comes from ethnic Malay nationalist sources, to refer to the Malay-speaking, consisting of the Malay Peninsula and Sumatra. It refers to that in both a modern and historical context, predating the arrival of Islam in Southeast Asia.
After Malaysia lost control of the Malay Peninsula, as well as the islands of Lidigan and Sipadan to Indonesia, the two nations signed the Unity Pact, promising friendship and better understanding between the new nations. This formed the basis for the formation of an un-named coalition between Indonesia and Malaysia. This was commonly referred to as the Indo-Malayan Coalition, which in Malaysia was known as the "Gabungan Tanah Indo-Melayu" and the "Koalisi Indo-Melayu" in Indonesia. The two also had a civil agreement between land and territory ownership. Indonesia peacefully ceded Patani to Malaysia, and kept Sipadan and Lidigan.
In 1960, it was made official, when Malaysian Prime Minister Tunku Abdul-Rahman and Indonesian President Sukarno announced the formation of the Alam Melayu, or the "Malay realm". Both agreed that Tunku Abdul-Rahman would be the Head of Alam Melayu.
The allyship between the two nations was examplified by the 1961 Australian invasion of southeastern Indonesia, in an attempt to free West Papua and Timor from Indonesia. Malaysian forces aided the Indonesians in successfully repelling the Australian invasion. The Australian POWs were taken to Malaysian prisons, as a result of a prisoner exchange between the two armies. Australian Prime Minister Robert Menzies demanded the POWs be sent home, the Malaysian government demanded a war reparation of over $5,000,000, in which Indonesia gets 2/3 of the share. Menzies agreed to the deal.
Singapore Joins - 1965
In 1965, Yusof bin Ishak proclaimed himself the Sultan of Singapura as "Sultan Yusuf", and carried forth a mass deporation of Chinese Singaporeans, and in an act of Malay nationalism. That same year, under Sultan Yusuf's leadership, Singapore became the third member of the Alam Melayu. At this point, Sukarno had become the Head. The remaining Chinese Singaporeans tried to mount a failed rebellion to oust Sultan Yusuf I from power. The Chinese militants were defeated, their militant leader, Lee Kuan Yew was imprisoned and later sent to Indonesia after a prisoner exchange programs between the two new nations.
Indonesia's membership caused a hot bed of reactions across the nation, both among Malays and non-Malays. The non-Malays, particularily Javanese and Balinese were also worried that Indonesia's membership would encourage and fuel Malay supremacist groups in the nation. Sukarno assured that all "Pribumis" would be protected, and are part of the Malay Race. Some Islamist Malays were still not pleased with Sukarno, and were appalled that he would refer to even non-Muslims, such as the Hindus and Christians of Indonesia as "Malay". In 1966, Lee Kuan Yew excaped from his prison in Yogyakarta, and also attempted to join the effort to overthrow Sukarno. In 1967, this led to a failed coup attempt led by Suharto (who was actually Javanese), and was imprisoned and deported to Malaysia where he spent the rest of his life in exile. In addition, Muslim radicals in Malaysia also accused Indonesians and claimed that Indonesia was not a true Malay nation, leading to a cultural rift between Malaysian Malays, Malay Indonesians and non-Malay natives of both nations.
Malay militants in Patani and Kelantan began an "ethnic cleansing" of anybody that wasn't a Malay or Arab, targeting people of Indonesian descent, with the exception of ethnic Malays from Indonesia. Sultan Yusuf I sent forces to aid the Malaysian army in routing the terrorists, in order to prove that he wasn't advocating terrorism. This was addressed in the 1967 Alam Melayu Summit which took place in Putrajaya, Malaysia. The three nations agreed to a military effort to keep peace-keeping in the region, to allow all the ethnic groups to live safe lives.
The next summit, in Bandung, Indonesia was a contrevoursial one. Due to pressure from native Malaysians, Tunku Abdul Rahman announced the Bumiputra Act, dubbed the "Indian deportation" act, which deported most of Malaysia's Indian population. The names of hundreds of thousands of Indian Malaysians would be submitted to a lottery, and chosen names would be those headed for deportation. V.T. Sambanthan, a Malaysian founding father drew immense criticism and even death threats due to his support for the act, showing solidarity with Malaysia's native population. Many of these Indians were deported to back to India, some to the United Kingdom and the Philippines. President Sukarno of Indonesia refused to take in the refugees, as did Sultan Yusuf I of Singapore.
This had led to the 1969 Bali bombings, in which a Malay militant group took over 93 native Balinese people hostages. This led to a crack-down by the Indonesian Army, in what is known as the Battle of Bali, the Indonesians routed the terrorists. Due to similar incidents in Sumatra, Sultan Yusuf I declared a state of emergency in Singapore, sending naval forces in the waters near Sumatra. Despite Sultan Yusuf I's earlier anti-Chinese pogrom, he promised to protect the remaining Chinese and Tamil Indians in Singapore and started allowing Chinese and Tamil Indians to serve in the Singaporean Army.
In the 1970 Alam Melayu Summit in Jakarta on October 4, 1970, President Mohamad Hatta had announced the definition of a "Malay". Hatta's definition had been influenced by the Arab League, in which a "Malay" in a political sense refers to any native of Nusantara, or the Malay Archipelago, and speaks with knowledge and command - the Malay language or any of its dialects.
Due to the contrevoursy of the usage of the term "Malay", President Hatta had suggested changing the name from "Alam Melayu" to using the name "Nusantara", but that request was rejected.
During the 1972 summit in Singapore City, Mohammad Hatta, Sultan Yusuf I and Tunku Abdul-Razak signed the Border Security Pact (Malay: Sempadan Keselamatan Pakatan, Indonesian: Keamanan Perbatasan Pakta) which the nations promised to curtail illegal immigration and to tighten border forces. They also had confirmed and upheld Hatta's definition of a Malay - synonymous with the native Austronesians of Indonesia, Malaysia and Singapore.
In 1973, Filipino Prime Minister Ferdinand Marcos had sent Sukarno a request to grant the Philippines membership. Succeding Malaysian prime minister Tunku Abdul-Razak Hussein, Sukarno and Sultan Yusuf I of Singapore were baffled, and took time to review and study Philippines and its history. They invited Ferdinand Marcos as a guest to their Annual Dinner in 1974, to discuss about the possible membership of the Philippines into the Alam Melayu.
Sultan Yusuf I argued that Filipinos were too Hispanized and westernized in general to become considered a Malay nation. However, Marcos took the three other leaders to Mindanao and Sulu to prove that Malay influence still existed in the Philippines. Sultan Yusuf I was personally impressed to see Malay-speaking people in a country so-influenced by Spanish culture. Sultan Yusuf I had become influenced, and hired many Tausūg women to become entertainers in his Palace. Many Filipinos, particularily Spanish-speaking and Mestizo Filipinos and had opposed Philippine membership in the Alam Melayu, favoring the Latin influence.
Marcos assured the three that King of Spain was the "king" of the Philippines, only in-name and nothing more, showing that he had abolished the legitimacy of the Spanish Crown in the country and stated his hatred of the Spanish monarchy.
On January 1, 1975 on New Years Day, Sukarno announced that he has accepted Marcos' request, ths making the Philippines the fourth member of the Alam Melayu. Marcos was granted his honorary kris dagger presented by Sultan Yusuf I. In 1976, Marcos sent Filipino forces to aid the Indonesians in helping Malaysia fight the Siamese invasion of 1976.
In 1986, following Philippine prime minister Sancho Abelló y Terrazas of the Conservative Party, a Mestizo and supporter of the Philippine Monarchy, made an attempt to remove the Philippines from the Alam Melayu, yet he failed. His leadership had threatened Philippines' membership, and he in 1988 after a mere two years, he was replaced by Sergio Valencia, a native Visayan who favored Ferdinand Marcos' pro-native stance.
Capital and Administrative Cities
- Jakarta, Indonesia (1960-1970)
- Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia (1970-1986)
- Singapore City, Singapore (1986-1990)
- Putrajaya, Malaysia (current)