Joint Crisis Committee: The Malayan Emergency, 1948

Deep in the Malayan jungle brews a conflict that represents a titan clash of ideologies and may just come to define the fate of an entire region for years to come. A substantial force of the Malayan Communist Party, energized by the expanding penumbra of the USSR and an increasingly successful communist rebellion in China, has taken up arms against the Federation of Malaya, a semi-sovereign remnant of the former British Empire. The incipient Commonwealth of Nations (with the backing of the United Kingdom and many of its former colonies) has stepped in to defend Malaya from collapsing under the weight of rebellion. But how far will the Commonwealth – which toiled to a costly victory in World War II – be willing to go to preclude Malaya’s fall to communism? Conversely, will the Malayan Communist Party be able to morph Malayan demands for independence into Malayan calls for communism? Rife with economic stagnation, ethnic divisions, and the larger philosophical questions of the postwar world, the struggle between the Malayan Communist Party and Commonwealth of Nations is sure to test the political skill, military intelligence and ideological conviction of any and all who wish to enact their vision of the Malaya of tomorrow.  


 
 

Coordinating Crisis Director's Letter:

Selamat Datang!

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Welcome to the Malayan Emergency Joint Crisis Committee! My name is Jenna Wong, and I have the pleasure of serving as your Coordinated Crisis Director for this JCC. You guys truly have an all-star lineup for your senior staff, and all five of us worked tirelessly to make this JCC unique on the circuit. I promise that you are in very good hands, and I can’t wait to see the wholesome (or slightly less wholesome) arcs you concoct over the course of HNMUN.

            A little about myself: I am a rising junior (eek!) from Concord, Massachusetts, which means I can go home on weekends and see my dog. I’m concentrating in Social Studies (aka politics, philosophy and economics), with a focus field on Gender, Violence and Reconciliation in Latin America. Most of my time outside of academics is consumed by model United Nations, and I currently serve as one of our travel team’s Head Delegates (#rushICMUN) and sit on the Board of Directors for the International Relations Council, our umbrella organization for all things IR. I am also Undersecretary-General for Committees at our high school conference in India and have directed a General Assembly for two years in a row at our high school conferences in Boston and China. Last year at HNMUN I was technically a Director of Administration, but somehow got roped into crisis staffing the Walt Disney committee, so you might have seen me running around the BPP wearing Minnie Mouse ears.

            This committee, while tragically not featuring any Minnie Mouses, will dive into an undercovered area of Southeast Asian history. In some regards the Malayan Emergency is a classic Cold War tale of Communist rebels vs. Western imperialists - indeed, it is often compared to the better known Vietnam War. Yet this story is different than the typical one we see in crisis committees - neither Russia nor the United States is heavily involved. I hope that this JCC will thus allow us to explore the Cold War era from a totally different angle than the standard narrative.

            My job as Coordinating Crisis Director is to ensure that crisis flows smoothly between the two sides of this JCC. I will be tracking all inter-committee notes, staying in constant contact with both CDs to plan coordinated crisis breaks, facilitating inter-committee meetings, and ensuring that this JCC truly feels like a joint effort. In the interest of transparency, I would also like it to avoid following the path of many JCCs and devolving into war games. There are a plethora of interesting and creative paths these two committees can take - planning attacks and counter-attacks all weekend is not one of them.

Please let me know if you have any questions about how this JCC will run, and I can't wait to meet you all at conference!

Selamat tinggal,
Jenna Wong
Coordinated Crisis Director, The Malayan Emergency