字幕列表 影片播放 列印英文字幕 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 unquote “review” 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! 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