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The fall of Malacca ; The factors:

Weak ruling government

The death of bendahara Tun Perak, after his

death however, there was no successor capable of running the state of Malacca. Tun Peraks successor, Tun Putih was old, weak and barely able to carry out his duties.The reign of Sultan Mahmud Shah as king is also another factor that caused the fall of Malacca. Sultan Mahmud paid no need to the administration of the government.

Hostility among races

When Tun Mutahir assumed the position of

Bendahara after the demise of Tun Putih, Tun Mutahir, who was a Tamil-Islam, favoured his relatives and reserved important administration positions in the government for them. Consequently, there was much dissatisfaction among the Malay Muslims and Tamil Muslims, and the racial tensions, which had mellowed to some point due to the wise and fair reign of Tun Perak, flared up again

Many of the foreign merchants who came to

Malacca to trade did not believe loyalty to the government of Malacca. Some even backed the Portuguese during the attack on Malacca. A Chinese merchant, for instance, provided on loan, 5 huge barges to the Portuguese while a Tamil merchant known as Ninachatu supplied information on Malaccas defense system.

The strength of the Portuguese army

Portuguese soldiers were better equipped

than their Malacca counterparts and possessed advanced weapons, like guns and cannons. They were also led by Alfonso dAlbuquerque, who was capable and experienced in the battlefield. The Malacca army, on the other hand, used medieval weapons like the kris, swords, spears and lances.

Colonialism of Malay

Their purpose, in addition to searching for

"Guinea gold" and expanding their tiny kingdom to become one of the most powerful nations in the world, was to spread the Christian Gospel and reduce the influence of Islam in the East. The man who succeeded in the capture of Malacca was none other than the famed Alfonso de Albuquerque, who was a key player in much of the Portuguese expansion efforts in Asia. After 10 days under siege, Malacca fell into the hands of the Portuguese on 24th August 1511.

In 1580, Philip II of Spain conquered Portugal

and subsequently closed the port of Lisbon to Dutch and English sailors in 1594. Before this, the Dutch had been obtaining spices from Lisbon and when the closure ensued, the Dutch were motivated to go to the East to obtain spices on their own. The Dutch attack on Malacca began in August 1640 and lasted for over five months, ending in January 1641. The Dutch also signed treaties with the Sultan of Perak, Kedah, Ujung Salang and Bangeri, which enabled them to monopolize the trading of tin and weaken the power of the local government and Malacca once again proved useful to control the Malay states abundant with tin.

The British
The British and Dutch signed the London Treaty

on 17th March 1824 to solve the conflicts between themselves in the East and to protect their own interests. It was agreed upon ib the treaty that Singapore, the Malay states and India would come under British rule, while East India and the regions south of Singapore belonged to the Dutch. In 1873, the signing of the Pangkor Engagement in 1874, in which the Residential System was first established in Perak. This was a historical event which laid the foundation for the establishment of the Resident System in most of the other states in Malaya.

In 1896, Perak,Selangor, Pahang and Negeri Sembilan, these four states were combined into one administration unit and acknowledged as the Federated Malay States. Johor, together with the other remaining states like Kedah, Perlis, Kelantan and Terengganu, which were once regarded as vassal territories of Thailand, became known as the nonfederated Malay states and accorded British protection as agreed upon in the 1909 AngloThai Treaty between Britain and Thailand.

The Japanese first set foot in Malaya on 8th

December 1941 and with a force of some 150,000 men captured the whole of Malaya and Singapore from the hands of the British within ten weeks through their ingenuity and meticulous planning. Knowing very well that the British had neglected the north, and prepared instead, for an attack in Singapore by building powerful defenses to ward off threats from the sea, the Japanese stunned their enemies by advancing from the north. Their attack first began in the Kota Bahru located north of Malaya, and Singgora and Patani, located in the southern part of Thailand.

As thousands of bicycles ridden by Japanese soldiers advanced to the southern tip of the Peninsula, the British suffered severe losses when their only two battleships in the area, the Prince of Wales and the Repulse, were bombed by the Japanese and consequently sunk on 10th December in the east coast of Malaya. Simultaneously, Singapore was also bombed and the coast of Kelantan invaded. Penang fell into Japanese hands one week later, Kuala Lumpur, on 7th January 1942 followed by Johor at the end of January. The final blow landed on the British when Singapore was captured on 15th February 1942. In its humiliating defeat, the British surrendered to the Japanese, 80,000 troops and all, on the same day.