Dr Amrita Malhi is a Visiting Fellow in the Australian National University’s College of Asia and the Pacific. Her research interests include histories and politics in Malaya and Malaysia, Islamist responses to state-led development projects, and the east coast of the Malay Peninsula. Her writing has been published in the Journal of Peasant Studies and Muslim World, along with edited volumes on Malaysia and Malaya’s Ottoman connections. Amrita is working on a book manuscript on the allure of the Caliphate in an anti-colonial uprising in 1920s Malaya.
As the dust settles, Mahathir needs to navigate the Chinese threat he exploited in the campaign, while the Islamist lobby seeks new ground.
<p>Malaysia’s Prime Minister had an eye on an audience at home while striding an international stage in Sydney at the weekend.</p>
Politicians might talk political tactics and leave the public bored, but a real contest is brewing.