Kesatuan Melayu Muda
Kesatuan Melayu Muda was the first national political establishment in British Malaya
British Malaya
British Malaya loosely described a set of states on the Malay Peninsula and the Island of Singapore that were brought under British control between the 18th and the 20th centuries...

. Ibrahim Yaacob
Ibrahim Hj Yaacob
Ibrahim bin Haji Yaacob was a Malayan politician. An opponent of the British colonial government, he was President and founder of the Kesatuan Melayu Muda . During World War II, he supported the Japanese during their occupation of Malaya...

 played a huge role in founding the union in 1938 in Kuala Lumpur
Kuala Lumpur
Kuala Lumpur is the capital and the second largest city in Malaysia by population. The city proper, making up an area of , has a population of 1.4 million as of 2010. Greater Kuala Lumpur, also known as the Klang Valley, is an urban agglomeration of 7.2 million...

, then the capital of the Federated Malay States
Federated Malay States
The Federated Malay States was a federation of four protected states in the Malay Peninsula—Selangor, Perak, Negeri Sembilan and Pahang—established by the British government in 1895, which lasted until 1946, when they, together with the Straits Settlements and the Unfederated Malay...

. The main goal of the union was to unite all Malays regardless of origin and fight for Malay rights. Specifically, KMM held an ideal known as Panji Melayu Raya or Greater Indonesia
Greater Indonesia
Greater Indonesia or in the Malay language, Indonesia Raya or Melayu Raya was a political concept that sought to bring the so-called Malay race together by uniting the British territories on the Malay Peninsula and North Borneo that formed Malaysia with the Dutch East Indies...

 which calls for the unification of British Malaya and Indonesia. The union was vehemently against British
British Empire
The British Empire comprised the dominions, colonies, protectorates, mandates and other territories ruled or administered by the United Kingdom. It originated with the overseas colonies and trading posts established by England in the late 16th and early 17th centuries. At its height, it was the...


The establishment of KMM was closely related to the atmosphere of Sultan Idris Training College for Malay Teachers
Universiti Pendidikan Sultan Idris
University Pendidikan Sultan Idris or UPSI is a public university in the town of Tanjung Malim, Perak in Malaysia. First established in 1922 as a teachers college, it is one of the oldest functioning institutions of higher learning in Malaysia.-History:...

 (SITC), currently known as Universiti Pendidikan Sultan Idris. Through lectures and writings at the college, anti-colonialism influenced the students there. Ibrahim Yaacob himself was an alum of the college. Along with him, other alumni of the college that were active in KMM were Hassan Manan, Abdul Karim Rashid and Mohd. Isa Mahmud. It is because of this that SITC is known as the birthplace of Malay nationalism
Early Malay nationalism
Early Malay nationalism before Malaysian independence did not exist as a united and organised political movement prior to World War II. The concept of ketuanan Melayu was largely irrelevant at the time, as the Chinese and Indians, who formed almost half of the population, did not see themselves as...


After the establishment of its main branch in Kuala Lumpur, Malay school teachers most of which were the graduate of SITC continued to spread KMM's wings throughout Malaya
British Malaya
British Malaya loosely described a set of states on the Malay Peninsula and the Island of Singapore that were brought under British control between the 18th and the 20th centuries...


KMM and several other Malay organizations later organized a Malay Congress in August 1939 in Kuala Lumpur. The second congress was held in Singapore in December 1940 while the third meeting was planned in Ipoh in 1941. The third congress however never took place due to Japanese occupation.

During the eve of World War II
World War II
World War II, or the Second World War , was a global conflict lasting from 1939 to 1945, involving most of the world's nations—including all of the great powers—eventually forming two opposing military alliances: the Allies and the Axis...

, KMM, Ibrahim Yaacob and his colleagues actively encouraged anti-British sentiments. The Japan
Japan is an island nation in East Asia. Located in the Pacific Ocean, it lies to the east of the Sea of Japan, China, North Korea, South Korea and Russia, stretching from the Sea of Okhotsk in the north to the East China Sea and Taiwan in the south...

ese also aided KMM and financed Ibrahim Yaacob's purchased of an influential Malay publication called Warta Malaya in Singapore
Singapore , officially the Republic of Singapore, is a Southeast Asian city-state off the southern tip of the Malay Peninsula, north of the equator. An island country made up of 63 islands, it is separated from Malaysia by the Straits of Johor to its north and from Indonesia's Riau Islands by the...

. By 1941, the British began observing the activities of KMM as they perceived KMM as a radical left-wing association. By the end of the year, Ibrahim Yaacob, Ishak Muhammad and many other KMM leadership were captured and imprisoned. KMM was severely weakened by the action taken by the British.

During the Battle of Malaya
Battle of Malaya
The Malayan Campaign was a campaign fought by Allied and Japanese forces in Malaya, from 8 December 1941 – 31 January 1942 during the Second World War. The campaign was dominated by land battles between British Commonwealth army units, and the Imperial Japanese Army...

, KMM was one of many organizations that aided the Japanese. This pro-Japanese anti-British tendency made KMM very close to the Japanese force. All of KMM members that were imprisoned by the British earlier were released by the Japanese during the occupation. In January 1942, KMM requested the Japanese to grant Malaya the independence the Japanese had promised earlier. This was the first request for Malayan independence by a Malaya-wide political body. The request however was turned down. The Japanese authorities instead disbanded KMM and established the Pembela Tanah Ayer (also known as the Malai Giyu Gun or by its Malay
Malay language
Malay is a major language of the Austronesian family. It is the official language of Malaysia , Indonesia , Brunei and Singapore...

 acronym PETA) militia in its stead.

With the surrender of Japan
Surrender of Japan
The surrender of Japan in 1945 brought hostilities of World War II to a close. By the end of July 1945, the Imperial Japanese Navy was incapable of conducting operations and an Allied invasion of Japan was imminent...

 in August 1945, former KMM cadres formed the nucleus of the emerging political movements like the Malay Nationalist Party, Angkatan Pemuda Insaf, and Angkatan Wanita Sedar ..
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