|Google's tribute to Malaysia's 55th Hari Merdeka (Independence Day). The hibiscus is the country's national flower.|
I know it's almost too late but I would like to wish all Malaysians a Happy 55th Independence Day!
Yes, I am aware that Sabah and Sarawak in Borneo didn't gain independence until 1963 so technically, today isn't the entire country's Independence Day but I believe 31st August 1957 is still a significant date for us. Malaysia was colonised by various countries for hundreds of years. It began when the Portuguese conquered Malaya (Peninsular Malaysia) in 1511 which led to the Dutch, Japanese and British colonisation of Malaya until 1957. My late father was a young child when the Japanese colonial powers invaded Malaya and I recall a few things he said about his experience during that time.
My Mum grew up during the British administration and I suppose we could say the British were not as violent but we were colonised nevertheless. Without getting into the details of the current political situation in Malaysia I'd have to disagree with people who say that as a nation we have nothing to celebrate or feel thankful for today. All you have to do is study Malaysian history, talk to your grandparents, open your eyes and observe what is happening around the world.
Enjoy the long holiday weekend, Malaysians! And to the rest of you, have a great weekend too.