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California Institute of Technology Vice-Chancellor and other outstanding alumni mourn Qian

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November 6, 2009 morning, “the father of China’s space,” Qian’s funeral was held in Beijing in the cemetery, the community people have come to bid farewell to the Qianlao.

California Institute of Technology Vice-Chancellor and other outstanding alumni mourn Qian

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November 6, 2009 morning, “the father of China’s space,” Qian’s funeral was held in Beijing in the cemetery, the community people have come to bid farewell to the Qianlao.

China news agency, Los Angeles, November 6 (Reporter Zhang Wei) – The California Institute of Technology Vice-Chancellor Jammu, vice president and director of the Jet Propulsion Laboratory Aila Qi has written a letter to Ms. Qian Xuesen Miss Jiang Ying, to “Outstanding Alumni, “Qian expressed deep condolences death.

To this letter of condolences through the Chinese Consul General Zhang Yun in Los Angeles transmitted. Condolence letter and spoke highly of the achievements of Qian’s life, he not only praised China’s “father of the rocket,” or California Institute of Technology’s “outstanding alumni.” The letter said, Qian, California Institute of Technology involved in Daniel and Florence Guggenheim Jet Propulsion Center building and the Jet Propulsion Laboratory to create, a great honor to win for his alma mater. Jammu and Aila Qi in a letter of condolences, said Qian in the field of rocket science and aerodynamic ground-breaking work, as well as China and the U.S. space program will be outstanding contribution made to never forget.

California Institute of Technology Chinese Students and Scholars Association President Chen in an interview with on the 6th, said Qian Lao’s death reached his alma mater, the Chinese students are very concerned, but also feel sorry that he and a number of students in the social networking site have expressed concern and condolences to his departure. Chen Tong said that later this month, the Chinese Students and Scholars Association will be invited to come to Wu Yaozu Qianlao student seminars, a shared memory Qianlao outstanding achievements. Mr. Wu is the U.S. Academy of Engineering, Chinese Academy of Sciences of foreign academician, is also a retired professor at Caltech.

Chen Tong said that in addition to Chinese students and scholars, the California Institute of Technology on the death of Qianlao also very concerned about the Qianlao the first working day after the death of the school on the site home page published obituary. Chen Tong, said Qian Lao influence in college and academic status of high, three decades ago, won the “Outstanding Alumni Award”, with more than 30 Nobel Prize winners and other alumni to share in this highest honor.

Qian at the California Institute of Technology study and work over a decade, in 1939 the school received a Ph.D. aviation and mathematics, is the school Guggenheim Jet Propulsion Center’s first, is also the famous world space community Jet Propulsion Laboratory, one of the founders.

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Tunku Abdul Rahman – Story of Merdeka from YTM Tunku Abdul Rahman

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Tunku Abdul Rahman – Story of Merdeka from YTM Tunku Abdul Rahman

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Tunku Abdul Rahman

Tunku Abdul Rahman Putra Al-Haj ibni Almarhum Sultan Abdul Hamid Halim Shah, AC, CH (February 8, 1903 – December 6, 1990) was known as “ayah Farouk” (a princely title in Malaysia), and also called Bapa Kemerdekaan (Father of Independence) or Bapa Malaysia (Father of Malaysia), was Chief Minister of the Federation of Malaya from 1955, and the country’s first Prime Minister from independence in 1957. He remained as the Prime Minister after Sabah, Sarawak, and Singapore joined in 1963 to form Malaysia.

Birth

Born in Istana Pelamin, Alor Star, Kedah, Abdul Rahman was the seventh son and twentieth child of Sultan Abdul Hamid Halim Shah, the twenty-fourth Sultan of Kedah. His mother, Cik Menjalara, was the Sultan’s sixth wife and the daughter of Siamese nobleman, Luang Naraborirak (Kleb), a Thai district officer (Nonthaburi Province) during the reign of King Rama V of Thailand.

Of all the Prime Ministers, Tunku had the most interesting story of birth. In 1902, the Keeper of the Ruler’s Seal was exposed as a man who had misused the trust placed in him and had sold state land for his own gain. Punishment lay with the Sultan, who ordered death for the Keeper, and decreed that the right thumb of the Keeper’s wife as well as those of his children should be chopped off as a taint they would carry on for the rest of their lives.

The Keeper’s wife rushed to Menjalara, then known to be the Sultan’s favourite and implored her intervention. Menjalara, following her maternal instincts, agreed to intercede. She had an audience with her husband, the Sultan and told him that she was pregnant again, but feared her child might be seriously affected if the punishment on the Keeper and his family were to be carried out.

Menjalara was a subtly clever woman. There is a Malay superstition that a husband should do nothing evil during the period of his wife’s pregnancy, otherwise a dark spirit would enter the child in the womb.

Sultan Abdul Hamid was so elated at the news that his favourite wife was presenting him with another child, and so anxious that nothing unfortunate should happen that he ordered the Keeper to prison instead and cancelled the punishment on his family.

The truth, however, was that Menjalara was not pregnant at that time. But she conceived soon afterwards, and the child born was Abdul Rahman who delights to say when he was alive that he was “born under a true”.

Early life

As a child liked nothing better than to play with the children in the kampungs, beyond the istana (palace) in which he was reared – an istana built by a Chinese contractor in the style of a pagoda with fire-snorting dragons climbing around the walls in tiled fantasies. The istana no longer stands as it was razed by fire and on its foundations rose the State Council chamber, which marked a new era in the history of Kedah.

Abdul Rahman began his education in 1909 at a Malay Primary School, Jalan Baharu, in Alor Star and was later transferred to the Government English School, now the Sultan Abdul Hamid College, Alor Star, where he studied during the day and read the Qur’an in the afternoon.

When he first went to school in Alor Star, Kedah, little Tunku screamed against what he considered was the indignity of being carried to and fro by a Court retainer. Royalty was autocratic those days and little princes were not supposed to dirty their feet, hence they were carried everywhere. The Tunku rejoiced the day he didn’t have to be carried to school.

Two years later in 1911, when he was eight, he was sent to study at Debsirin School in Bangkok along with his three brothers. In 1915, he returned and continued his studies at Penang Free School.

In 1918, Abdul Rahman was awarded a Kedah State Scholarship to further his studies at St Catharine’s College in the University of Cambridge, where he obtained his Bachelor of Arts degree in 1925. He was the first student from Kedah to study in the United Kingdom under the sponsorship of the Kedah State Government.

Prior to joining St Catherine’s, he was being coached in the little village of Little Stukeley in Huntingdon, England for entry to a public school The Tunku was fond of fast driving during his days in England and had amounted 28 traffic offences. He is also said to be quite superstitious. He does not cut his hair or nails on Friday or walk under a ladder.

Early career

Upon his return home, Abdul Rahman worked in the Kedah public service and was appointed as District Officer of Kulim and Sungai Petani. In colonial Malaya, almost all the District Officers were British. Abdul Rahman who was the only Malay District Officer at that time had the people’s interest at heart. This made him cross swords with the British Administration many times.

However, the British Administration in Kedah could not do anything as he was a prince and the son of the Sultan. However, him angering the colonial administration cost him many chances of promotion to higher offices.

Some time later, he returned to England to complete his law studies at the Inner Temple but was forced to stop in 1938. At the outbreak of World War II, he returned to Malaya.

During the Japanese Occupation of Kedah, the Tunku was responsible for saving many lives, both Malay and Chinese. He being of royal blood was highly revered by the Japanese and could not be touched by them, and he used this to his advantage. Many people from Kulim today lay claim to owing their lives to the Tunku.

He resumed his studies at the Inner Temple in 1947. And in 1949, he qualified for the Bar. During this period, Abdul Rahman met Abdul Razak Hussein (later known as Datuk and Tun). He was elected president of the Malay Society of Great Britain, and Abdul Razak, who was twenty-six, was his secretary.

Involvement in politics

After his return to Malaya in 1949, Abdul Rahman was first posted at the Legal Officer’s office in Alor Star. He later asked to be transferred to Kuala Lumpur, where he became a Deputy Public Prosecutor. He was later appointed as president of the Sessions Court.

During this period, nationalism was running high among the Malays, with Datuk Onn Jaafar leading the United Malays National Organisation (UMNO) in the struggle against Britain’s Malayan Union (see History of Malaysia). Abdul Rahman joined UMNO and became active in Malayan nationalist politics. He was popular and later became head of the Kedah branch of UMNO.

In August 1951 an internal crisis in UMNO forced Datuk Onn Jaafar to resign as party president. Abdul Rahman was elected as the new president, eventually holding the post for 20 years.

Road to independence

In 1954 Abdul Rahman led a delegation to London to seek independence for Malaya, but the trip proved to be unfruitful. The British were reluctant to grant independence unless there was evidence that the different races in Malaya were able to work together and cooperate in a new and independent country.

Race relations was the cause of Onn Jaafar stepping down. He wanted UMNO to be open to the Chinese and Indians but UMNO members were not ready to accept this. His successor, Abdul Rahman saw a way around this by forming a political alliance with the Malayan Chinese Association called the Alliance Party. The coalition proved to be popular among the people. The Alliance was later joined by the Malayan Indian Congress (MIC) in 1955, representing the Indian community.

In the same year, the first federal general election was held, and the Alliance Party (Perikatan) won fifty-one out of the fifty-two seats contested. Abdul Rahman was selected as Malaya’s first Chief Minister.

Later in 1955 Abdul Rahman made another trip to London to negotiate Malayan independence, and 31 August 1957 was decided as the date for independence. When the British flag was lowered in Kuala Lumpur on independence day, Abdul Rahman led the crowd in announcing “Merdeka!” (independence). Photographs of Abdul Rahman raising his hand, and recordings of his emotional but determined voice leading the cheers, have become familiar icons of Malaysian independence.

Premiership

Abdul Rahman dominated the politics of independent Malaya (which became Malaysia in 1963), and led the Alliance to landslide wins in the 1959, and 1964 general elections.

The formation of Malaysia was one of Abdul Rahman’s greatest achievements. In 1961 he made a speech at the Foreign Correspondents Association of Southeast Asia in Singapore, proposing a federation Malaya, Singapore, Sabah, Sarawak, and Brunei. On 16 September 1963, with the federation of all these states except Brunei, Abdul Rahman was formally restyled Prime Minister of Malaysia.

However, the racial factor was worsened with the inclusion of Singapore, which increased the Chinese proportion to close to 40%. Both UMNO and the MCA were nervous about the possible appeal of Lee Kuan Yew’s People’s Action Party (PAP, then seen as a radical socialist party) to voters in Malaya, and tried to organise a party in Singapore to challenge Lee’s position there. Lee in turn threatened to run PAP candidates in Malaya at the 1964 federal elections, despite an earlier agreement that he would not do so (see PAP-UMNO relations). This provoked Abdul Rahman to demand that Singapore withdraw from Malaysia.

On 7 August 1965, Abdul Rahman announced to the Parliament of Malaysia in Kuala Lumpur that it should vote yes on the resolution to have Singapore leave the Federation, choosing to “sever all ties with a State Government that showed no measure of loyalty to its Central Government” as opposed to the undesirable method of repressing the PAP for its actions. Singapore’s secession and independence became official on 9 August 1965.

At the 1969 general election, the Alliance’s majority was greatly reduced. Demonstrations following the elections sparked the May 13 racial riots in Kuala Lumpur. Some UMNO leaders led by Tun Abdul Razak were critical of Abdul Rahman’s leadership during these events, and an emergency committee MAGERAN took power and declared a state of emergency.

Abdul Rahman’s powers as Prime Minister were severely curtailed, and on 22 September 1970, he was forced to resign as Prime Minister in favour of Abdul Razak. He subsequently resigned as UMNO President in June 1971, in the midst of severe opposition of the ‘Young Turks’ comprising party rebels such as Mahathir Mohammad and Musa Hitam. The duo later became Prime Minister and Deputy Prime Minister of Malaysia respectively.

Involvements in Islam

After making Islam the official religion in 1960, Abdul Rahman established the Islamic Welfare Organisation (PERKIM), an organisation to help Muslim converts adjust to new lives as Muslims.

He was President of PERKIM until a year before his death. In 1961 Malaysia hosted the first International Qur’an Recital Competition, an event that developed from Abdul Rahman’s idea when he organised the first state-level competition in Kedah in 1951.

In 1969 Abdul Rahman helped to set up the Organisation of Islamic Conference (OIC), of which he was the first Secretary-General. Subsequently, he initiated the setting up of the Islamic Development Bank as a specialised institution within the OIC. He was also President of the Regional Islamic Da’wah Council of South East Asia and the Pacific (RISEAP) from 1982 to 1988.

Abdul Rahman upheld the independence social contract of a secular Malaysia with Islam as its official religion. On the occasion of his 80th birthday, Abdul Rahman stated in the The Star newspaper of 9 February 1983 that the “country has a multi-racial population with various beliefs. Malaysia must continue as a secular State with Islam as the official religion.” In the same issue of The Star, Abdul Rahman was supported by the third Malaysian Prime Minister, Hussein Onn, who stated that the “nation can still be functional as a secular state with Islam as the official religion.”

Later life

In 1977, having acquired substantial shares in The Star, a Penang-based newspaper, Abdul Rahman became the newspaper’s Chairman. His columns, “Looking Back” and “As I See It”, were critical of the government, and in 1987 Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad banned the newspaper.

This led to a split in UMNO, with Abdul Rahman and another former Prime Minister, Tun Hussein Onn, setting up a new party called UMNO Malaysia, but its registration was quashed by Mahathir Mohamad, who set up his own UMNO Baru (“New UMNO”).

Abdul Rahman later supported Semangat 46, a splinter group of UMNO led by Tengku Razaleigh Hamzah. He campaigned actively for the latter in the General election of 1990, but was already in very poor health. The well-educated, visionary Tunku could barely contain his contempt for Mahathir’s brash nationalism (i.e. Ketuanan Melayu) that went totally against the Rukun Negara and brought about serious racial segregation. He was a pillar of staunch opposition until his death in 1990.

Death

Tunku Abdul Rahman died on 6 December 1990 at the age of eighty-seven, and was laid to rest at the Langgar Royal Mausoleum in Alor Star.

Family

Abdul Rahman married at least four times. By his first wife, a Thai Chinese woman named Meriam Chong, he had Tunku Khadijah and Tunku Ahmad Nerang. On Meriam’s death, he married his former landlady in England, Violet Coulson. He was ordered to divorce her by the Regent of Kedah.

He then married Sharifah Rodziah Syed Alwi Barakbah, with whom he adopted four children, Sulaiman, Mariam, Sharifah Hanizah (granddaughter) and Faridah. Sharifah Rodziah served as First Lady of Malaysia during Tunku’s prime ministership.

Wanting to have more children of his own, he secretly married another Chinese lady named Bibi Chong who converted upon marriage. He had two daughters with her, Tunku Noor Hayati and Tunku Mastura.

Awards and Recognition

  • In 1961, Tunku Abdul Rahman was appointed to the Order of the Companions of Honour (CH) by Queen Elizabeth II, and was appointed an honorary Companion of the Order of Australia in 1987.
  • Tunku Abdul Rahman Stamp Issues: In 1991, he adorned part of the collection of Past Prime Ministers of Malaysia stamps issue. In 2003, stamps of Tunku Abdul Rahman were issued to commemorate his 100th birthday anniversary and to pay tribute to him as he was the first prime minister of Malaysia since Malaysia became an independent nation in 1957.


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Mahathir – Biografy

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Mahathir – Biografy

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Mahathir

Tun Mahathir bin Mohamad born July 10, 1925 is a retired Malaysian political figure. He was the fourth Prime Minister of Malaysia. He held the post for 22 years from 1981 to 2003, making him Malaysia’s longest-serving Prime Minister, and one of the longest-serving leaders in Asia.

During his term in office, he was credited for engineering Malaysia’s rapid modernisation. Mahathir is also known for his criticisms towards western and developed countries.[3]

During his administration, he was considered to be one of Asia’s most influential leaders. Mahathir is also noted in the Western world as an outspoken critic of Western-style globalization.

Personal

Mahathir was born in Alor Setar, Kedah, the youngest of nine children of a schoolteacher and a housewife. His father, Mohamad Iskandar, was of half-Indian origin, being the son of a Malayalee Muslim (who migrated from Kerala) and a Malay mother, while Mahathir’s own mother, Wan Tampawan, was Malay.

During World War II, he sold pisang goreng (banana fritters) and other snacks to supplement his family income during the Japanese occupation of Malaya. Mahathir attended a Malay vernacular school before continuing his education at the Sultan Abdul Hamid College in Alor Star.

Mahathir then attended the King Edward VII Medical College (the predecessor of present-day National University of Singapore) in Singapore, where he edited a medical student magazine called The Cauldron; he also contributed to the The Straits Times newspaper pseudonymously under the nickname “Che Det”.

Mahathir was also President of the Muslim Society in the college. Upon graduation in 1953, Mahathir joined the then Malayan government service as a medical officer. He married Siti Hasmah Mohd Ali—a fellow doctor and former classmate in college—on 5 August 1956, and left government service in 1957 to set up his own private practice in Alor Star.

Mahathir thrived in private practice, and allowed him to own by 1959 a Pontiac Catalina and employ an ethnic Chinese chauffeur (at the time, almost all chauffeurs in Malaysia were Malays, owing to the economic dominance of the ethnic Chinese). Some critics have suggested this foreshadowed a later hallmark of Mahathir’s politics, which focused on the “cultivation of such emblems of power”.

From his marriage with Tun Dr. Siti Hasmah binti Haji Mohamad Ali, they have seven children, four sons and three daughters: Marina Mahathir, Mirzan Mahathir, Melinda Mahathir, Mokhzani Mahathir, Mukhriz Mahathir, Maizura Mahathir and Mazhar Mahathir. Both Mukhriz and Mokhzani are involved in business as well as in politics while their eldest daughter Marina is a prominent local writer and AIDS activist. He successfully underwent a heart bypass operation in 1989 at age 63.

Political career

In the third general election of 1964, Mahathir was elected Member of Parliament for Kota Setar Selatan defeating the Pan-Malaysian Islamic Party’s (PAS) candidate with a 60.2% majority. He lost the seat in the following general election in 1969 by a mere 989 votes to PAS’s candidate, Haji Yusoff Rawa.

Following the race riots of 13 May 1969, Mahathir was sacked from the UMNO Supreme Council on 12 July, following his widespread distribution to the public of his letter to Tunku Abdul Rahman, the Prime Minister at that time. In his letter, he had criticised the manner in which Tunku Abdul Rahman had handled the country’s administration which was believed to favour the ethnic Chinese. Dr. Mahathir was subsequently relieved of his party membership on 26 September.

While in the political wilderness, Mahathir wrote his book, “The Malay Dilemma” in which he sought to explain the causes of the 13 May Incident in Kuala Lumpur and the reasons for the Malays’ lack of economic progress within their own country.

He then proposed a politico-economic solution in the form of “constructive protection”, worked out after careful consideration of the effects of heredity and environmental factors on the Malay race. The book, published in 1970, was promptly banned by the Tunku Abdul Rahman government. However, some of the proposals in this book had been used by Tun Abdul Razak, Tunku Abdul Rahman’s successor, in his “New Economic Policy” (NEP) that was principally geared towards affirmative action economic programs to address the nation’s economic disparity between the Malays and the non-Malays. The ban on his book was eventually lifted after Mahathir became Prime Minister in 1981.

Mahathir rejoined UMNO on 7 March 1972, and was appointed as Senator in 1973. He relinquished the senatorship post in 1974 in order to contest in the general elections where he was returned unopposed in the constituency of Kubang Pasu, and was appointed as the Minister of Education. In 1975, he became one of the three vice-presidents of UMNO, after winning the seat by 47 votes. Tun Hussein Onn appointed Mahathir as Deputy Prime Minister on 15 September 1978, and in a Cabinet reshuffle, appointed him concurrently as the Minister of Trade and Industry.

Mahathir had announced that he has resigned from UMNO, the backbone of the ruling party, the Barisan National on 19 May 2008 which coincides with the Wesak Day celebration.

Prime Minister

Mahathir became the Prime Minister of Malaysia on 16 July 1981 when Tun Hussein Onn stepped down due to health reasons. He was the nation’s first Prime Minister that came from a modest social background, whereas the first three prime ministers were members of the royal or elite families.

After 22 years in office, Mahathir retired on 31 October 2003, making him one of Asia’s longest-serving political leaders. Upon his retirement on 31 October 2003, Mahathir was awarded a “Tun”-ship, Malaysia’s highest civilian honour.

Deputy Prime Ministers

  • Tun Musa Hitam 1981-1986
  • Tun Ghafar Baba 1986-1993, appointed by Mahathir
  • Dato’ Seri Anwar Ibrahim 1993-1998
  • Tun Abdullah Ahmad Badawi 1999-2003, appointed by Mahathir

Sacking of Anwar Ibrahim

In 1998, the government brought charges of sexual misconduct and abuse of power charges against the former finance minister and deputy prime minister, Anwar Ibrahim. Anwar claimed that he was being set up because he had tried to turn corruption and nepotism into major political issues, with Mahathir and his associates as the targets. Mahathir’s supporters believe that it was Anwar’s attempt to replace Mahathir as the Prime Minister, upon seeing the downfall of Indonesia’s Suharto, that has led him to be removed from politics altogether.

The government included the statements of the purported victims of Anwar’s sexual assaults, evidence that was alleged by some to be tainted. Furthermore, the prosecution was unable to accurately decide on a date that the alleged acts of anal sex had occurred – the government originally alleged that a sodomy had occurred inside a building that had not been constructed at the time of the alleged event.

When the anomaly was pointed out, the prosecution amended the date of the alleged acts to a date after the building was built. Mahathir himself went as far as to go on television to declare Anwar guilty of sodomy and homosexual acts, even as the trial still was underway. There was widespread condemnation of the trial from human rights groups and the Malaysia bar association, who expressed serious doubts about its fairness. Mahathir then ordered a crackdown on the media and opposition parties who protested the trial. Anwar Ibrahim was sentenced to six years in prison for corruption and nine years prison for sodomy, to be served consecutively.

The Anwar crisis sparked protests by many Malaysians, of all ethnic groups, and Anwar’s supporters formed “Parti Keadilan Nasional” (National Justice Party) or “KeADILan”. It garnered widespread support from Malaysians, but it managed to win only five parliamentary seats in the 1999 elections. In the subsequent 2004 elections, when Mahathir’s successor became Prime Minister, KeADILan was nearly wiped out, with Anwar’s wife Wan Azizah winning its sole parliamentary seat. Six months later, Anwar’s conviction was overturned and he was released. Mahathir criticized the release of Anwar. The 2008 elections showed a major comeback from the opposition parties with Anwar’s KeADILan party helping to form five state governments, as well as becoming the biggest opposition party in Parliament.

Retirement

In 2002 a tearful Mahathir announced his resignation to a surprised UMNO General Assembly. He was persuaded to stay on for a further eighteen months, in a carefully planned handover that ended in October 2003.

On his retirement, he was granted Malaysia’s highest honour, which entitles him to the title Tun from his original Datuk Seri. Since retirement, he has been serving as an advisor to the Malaysian national oil company Petronas and the Malaysian national car company Proton, an original core national project initiated by Mahathir during his premiership. He is also the head of the Perdana Leadership Foundation, a foundation whose aim is to preserve, develop and spread materials regarding or written by previous Malaysian Prime Ministers. While he has retired from all political offices, he remains very outspoken regarding national policies.

In 2005 Mahathir brought up the issue of excessive awarding of Approved Permits (APs) to import cars, stating that they were creating too much competition for Proton, causing friction between him and Rafidah Aziz, the Minister for International Trade and Industry, who oversaw the awarding of APs.

His successor, Abdullah, then announced that a National Automotive Policy (NAP) would be created to appropriately handle the issue. Later, when touching on the issue, Mahathir lamented the government’s majority in Parliament, saying, “I believe that the country should have a strong government but not too strong. A two-thirds majority like I enjoyed when I was prime minister is sufficient but a 90% majority is too strong….We need an opposition to remind us if we are making mistakes. When you are not opposed you think everything you do is right”.

Mahathir has also ventured into a bakery business with a Japanese partner. Together they established a Japanese-style bakery and bistro outlet called “The Loaf”. As of October 2007, there are two outlets in Malaysia, one in Langkawi and one in Kuala Lumpur. They are planning expand their business into other countries in Southeast Asia. In May 2008, Mahathir started a blog under his old pseudonym, which reached a million visitors within the span of one month.

Weblog

Mahathir started to weblog since May 2008. The site is intended to publish all his writings as when he is able to pen his thoughts and opinions.

Resignation from UMNO

Mahathir announced his resignation from UMNO on 19 May 2008 (Monday) at 12.35pm before 1,000 Kedah UMNO members in Alor Star and urged other members to follow suit as a way of pressuring Abdullah to step down. However, he resists to join any other party and would only rejoin UMNO after Abdullah steps down. His departure raises the possibility of large-scale desertions by loyalists, which could split the party and bring down the government.[59]

His son Mukhriz, the Jerlun member of Parliament, and a contender for the UMNO youth chief post in the next party election, however stays put but nevertheless urges Abdullah to quit immediately.

Health

The former Prime Minister has a history of mild heart attacks. He had a coronary artery bypass in 1989. On 9 November 2006, he was admitted into Institut Jantung Negara (National Heart Institute) in Kuala Lumpur after suffering a mild heart attack that was caused by a clot in his arteries and has since recovered. On 14 May 2007, Mahathir was admitted to the intensive care unit of a hospital in Langkawi after suffering from breathing difficulties.

Mahathir, 82, underwent a second heart bypass on 4 September 2007 in a specialist cardiac hospital in Kuala Lumpur. He recovered in the intensive care unit where he was operated on by a team of surgeons, including a US specialist.

On 23 September 2007, Mahathir underwent further surgery at the National Heart Institute due to an infection of the surgical wound in his chest. He has since come out of the hospital and appears to be healthy, even appearing in the V. K. Lingam public inquiry on 17 January 2008 as a witness.

Legacy

For his efforts to promote the economic development of the country, Mahathir has been granted the soubriquet of Bapa Pemodenan (Father of Modernization).

Since his resignation, there are signs that his influence is on the wane, notably the cancellation of a Mahathir-approved double tracking rail project on grounds of cost.

Mahathir’s official residence, Sri Perdana, where he resided from 23 August 1983 to 18 October 1999, was turned into a museum (Galeria Sri Perdana). In keeping with the principle of heritage conservation, the original design and layout of the Sri Perdana has been preserved.

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