Dr Comber’s account of General Templer’s administration in Malaya as High Commissioner and Director of Operations (1952–54) during the Malayan Emergency departs from the usually accepted orthodox assessment of his time in Malaya by focusing on the political and socioeconomic aspects of his governance rather than the military. In doing so, Dr Comber has relied mainly on primary and other first-hand sources, including the confidential reports sent from Malaya by the Australian Commission to the Australian government in Canberra, and the private papers of some of the leading Malayan politicians of the time with whom Templer had dealings which have been deposited in the ISEAS Library, Singapore, many of which have not been used before.
The evidence and facts that Dr Comber marshals in this study reflect well the reservations that were often felt about General Templer’s authoritarian form of government. While he was a good general and had an impressive military record, his administration in Malaya was marred by a lack of understanding of the background to Malaya’s history and the subtleties that are inherent in its culture and way of life which would have enabled him to come to terms more easily with the aspirations of the Malayan people for self-government and independence.
(Length x Height x Width) in mm :152 x 229
Weight in grams: 380
Author Biography:Leon Comber is Visiting Senior Research Fellow at the Institute of Southeast Asian Studies (ISEAS), Singapore, and Adjunct Research Fellow at Monash Asia Institute, Monash University, Melbourne.
Keywords: Political Biography
Page count: 240
Imprint: ISEAS-Yusof Ishak Institute
Publication Date: 20150401