10 October. The Colonial Secretary provides the details of the Malayan Union plan to the House of Commons. The Union would include the nine states of the Malay Peninsula (including Penang and Malacca), while Singapore would be kept as a special colony ‘owing to its special needs’.
12 October. Malayan newspapers publish news of the imminent announcement of the introduction of the Malayan Union. After this happens on October 15, Malay activists begin to worry what the Malayan Union’s liberal citizenship policy might mean for the rights of the ‘native inhabitants’ of Malaya.
16 October. Two months after the Japanese surrender, Australian troops and Dutch officials at long last enter Pontianak. The largely Chinese population greets them with not a single Dutch tricolour but many Chinese flags. The Japanese massacre of the local elite in early 1944 means that NICA has few allies to help them re-establish Dutch rule.
18 October. Sir Harold MacMichael, a special representative from the British government tasked with obtaining approval for the introduction of the Malayan Union from local rulers, meets with the first leader on his itinerary, the Sultan of Johor. The Malay public would later take special issue with MacMichael’s reportedly high-handed attitude toward the Sultans.
6 November. Early in the morning, a group of Malays kill 40 Chinese men, women and children at this small settlement outside of Kuala Pilah, Negri Sembilan. Seventeen are later arrested in connection to the massacre. This is only the most horrific episode of inter-ethnic violence in the region, which had been escalating throughout October and November. MPAJA and BMA troops are posted to the region to protect civilians. The Malayan Communist Party also decides to moderate its approach toward Malays.
On 13 November 1945, 100 tumultuous days had passed since the dropping of the atomic bomb at Hiroshima. One thousand days later, on 9 August 1948, the forces that had been set in train by Japan’s defeat and surrender continued to shape the face of Asia.
Revolution had broken out in Malaya under the Malayan Communist Party (MCP). The party had been strong in the wartime Malayan People’s Anti-Japanese Army, but had agreed to disarm at the end of the war and to concentrate on political and trade union activity. The party saw some possibility for growth in the … (to continue reading Cribb and Li’s aftermath, click the link below)
10 October. After a number of Viet Minh attacks are launched on French and British positions in Saigon the previous night, General Gracey orders advances into Saigon’s northern suburbs, further stretching his overextended forces. Later that day, he flies to attend an inter-allied conference in Singapore together with General Leclerc. Here he faces criticism for his actions but is backed by Leclerc. The increasingly concerned SEAC commander, Lord Mountbatten, who also faces major security problems in Indonesia and political headaches in Burma, Thailand and Malaya, is frustrated by the uncompromising French attitude and wants to avoid having his forces drawn into a full-scale conflict. He grants Gracey additional reinforcements but demands that the general works to promote a French–Viet Minh dialogue.
7 November. The Malayan Communist Party issues a statement calling on the British Military Administration to introduce self-rule, something it had not called for in August. The party further requests that the BMA loosen restrictions on speech and assembly and that it increase wages.