The atmosphere in Malaysia is very weird at the moment. There’s a huge build-up to the country’s 50th Independence day celebrations (Merdeka), but at the same time we’re standing in the wake of a considerable amount of racial and religious tension. The deputy Prime Minister, Najib, called Malaysia in Islamic state… and the government issued a gag order to stop the mainstream media from discussing it. You’d think it would be difficult to come up with something more absurd…

…and then this. A Malaysian student studying in Taiwan made a video parodying the Malaysian national anthem is under investigation by the Malaysian government, who are considering confiscating his passport and prosecuting him for sedition. The video raises controversial issues like – accusations of corruption in the Malaysian police force, referring to the morning Muslim prayers as ‘crowing’, and comments about the way the Malaysian Chinese are discriminated against in Malaysia. I’m afraid its in Hokkien and Malay, but you can view it here if you are interested.

It’s all a bit weird. Needless to say, I’m not impressed with the way Malaysia is handling these things. Fortunately, the Malaysian blogosphere is keeping the discussion going.