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  • On this episode of China Uncensored:

  • a surprise upset in Malaysia's elections

  • and how Chinese money played a big role.

  • Welcome back to China Uncensored.

  • I'm your host, Chris Chappell.

  • A striking election upset in Malaysia.

  • Hailed as a triumph of democracy.

  • A miracle even.

  • It's like a miracle, really

  • a dream come true.”

  • The kind that has all the makings of

  • a Hollywood political fiction blockbuster.

  • A 92-year-old former prime minister

  • comes out of retirement and

  • against all odds

  • defeats his former protégé,

  • ending six decades of one-party rule in Malaysia.

  • So we have in fact achieved a very substantial majority,

  • not just a few votes, not just a few seats,

  • but a very substantial majority.”

  • That's Mahathir Mohamad.

  • He was elected on May 9.

  • He's now the oldest elected leader in the world.

  • It'd be like Jimmy Carter,

  • who's now 93,

  • running as an independent in the next election

  • and winning against both Democrats and Republicans.

  • And having people across the country wonder,

  • Wait, that guy's still alive?”

  • This is to say,

  • Mahathir's win was a big surprise to everyone

  • reminding the world that you never know

  • what's going to happen in a democracy.

  • Not that the world need reminding.

  • One of the key issues that propelled Mahathir back into office

  • is China's growing influence on Malaysia.

  • Malaysia is pretty close to China.

  • Especially if you accept the Chinese regime's Nine-Dash Line

  • which Malaysia does not.

  • Malaysia is also pretty close to China economically.

  • It's one of the biggest recipients of Chinese investment.

  • They've secured $34 billion dollars worth of

  • Belt and Road Initiative infrastructure projects.

  • The Belt and Road Initiative

  • also called One Belt One Road

  • is a trillion-dollar spending spree

  • by the Chinese regime.

  • It's designed to project its power across the globe

  • and put strategic infrastructure in foreign countries

  • infrastructure that can be controlled by the Chinese Communist Party.

  • There's been concern in some Belt and Road host countries,

  • like Sri Lanka and Pakistan,

  • about these kinds of projects resulting in huge debts

  • owed to Chinese state-owned banks.

  • Malaysia is concerned about this, too.

  • And these concerns came out during the election campaign.

  • A popular grievance was that Chinese development projects

  • were really just a way for rich Chinese to buy up

  • the most attractive parts of Malaysia.

  • For example, Forest City.

  • It's a $100 billion dollar development project,

  • presumably called Forest City

  • because all the buildings are growing moss.

  • Chinese nationals account for 70% of apartment buyers there,

  • and most local Malaysians have been priced out.

  • And we're not talking about Chinese Malaysians here.

  • About a quarter of Malaysians are ethnically Chinese,

  • and ethnically Chinese families have been

  • a part of Malaysian society for centuries.

  • But what's happening now is that new waves

  • of Chinese nationals are coming in with big money,

  • and pricing locals out.

  • Another pain point is that Malaysia's strategic infrastructure

  • is falling under the control of big Chinese companies.

  • Near Kuantan, a sleepy coastal town with tropical beaches,

  • a Chinese state-owned company bought a 40% stake

  • in a deep-water shipping port.

  • And it bought a 49% stake in this

  • depressing-looking 3,000-acre industrial park.

  • It comes complete with Chinese workers,

  • a heavy dependence on Chinese materials,

  • and not very many opportunities for local Malaysian companies.

  • All this led the 92-year-old Mahathir Mohamad

  • to make Chinese influence a key issue in his campaign.

  • None of our people are employed as workers.

  • None of our companies are used for designing

  • and planning and supervising, et cetera.

  • We gain nothing.”

  • He accused the now-former prime minister Najib Razak

  • of selling out to China.

  • He also accused Najib of a lot of other things

  • unrelated to China, like corruption.

  • Including possibly stealing 700 million dollars

  • of Malaysian government money

  • in a development scandal.

  • Anyway, Mahathir campaigned on a promise

  • not only to fight corruption,

  • but also to quote unquotereview

  • Malaysia's bad deals with China.

  • In a note to investors,

  • major financial institution Credit Suisse

  • said that Mahathir's win

  • puts into question the future of Chinese investment

  • in the infrastructure sector.”

  • Malaysia isn't alone in its concerns

  • over Chinese investment.

  • The US and Europe have both taken steps

  • to limit Chinese investment in strategic sectors.

  • So the question is whether a similar pattern of resistance

  • will start to take shape across Asia.

  • But my favorite Chinese state-run media The Global Times

  • says they're not worried at all.

  • Which means they're definitely worried.

  • So what do you think about Malaysia's staggering election upset,

  • and do you see it as part of a bigger trend of resistance

  • to Chinese influence?

  • Leave your comments below.

  • Once again, I'm Chris Chappell.

  • See you next time.

  • It's time for another fan question!

  • This one comes from David Michael White.

  • Patreon supporter David Michael White asks: “Chris, what was the worst natural disaster

  • that you have ever experienced?”

  • I guess that question was in response to our recent episode

  • about why the Chinese Communist Party

  • loves natural disasters.

  • The worst natural disaster I was in:

  • Hurricane Sandy in 2012.

  • I was living in New Jersey at the time.

  • My roommate fled before it hit

  • and when I told him I was staying,

  • he looked at me with tears in his eyes

  • like he would never see me again.

  • And it was pretty bad.

  • I lived at the bottom of a hill

  • so when the hurricane hit,

  • the nearby hudson river rose up

  • and flooded my whole area.

  • As the water level was rising,

  • all the cars parked outside started shorting out

  • their alarms started blaring and unfortunately,

  • the windows all rolled down,

  • so they all started floating away.

  • I took some video of the aftermath.

  • Link is below.

  • Thanks for your question David!

  • Remember, if you want to have your questions

  • answered on the show,

  • become a member the China Uncensored 50 cent army.

  • Click the orange button to sign up!

On this episode of China Uncensored:

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B1 中級 美國腔

馬來西亞驚喜選舉中的中國因素(The China Factor in Malaysia’s Surprise Election)

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    zijun su 發佈於 2021 年 05 月 26 日
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