The origins and the key defining moments of the Cold War in Southeast Asia have been widely debated. This book focuses on an area that has received less attention, the impact and legacy of the Cold War on the various countries in the region, as well as on the region itself.

The book contributes to the historiography of the Cold War in Southeast Asia by examining not only how the conflict shaped the milieu in which national and regional change unfolded but also how the context influenced the course and tenor of the Cold War in the region. It goes on to look at the usefulness or limitations of using the Cold War as an interpretative framework for understanding change in Southeast Asia.

Chapters discuss how the Cold War had a varied but notable impact on the countries in Southeast Asia, not only on the mainland countries belonging to what the British Foreign Office called the "upper arc", but also on those situated on its maritime "lower arc". The book is an important contribution to the fields of Asian Studies and International Relations.

chapter |12 pages


Southeast Asia and the Cold War

part |124 pages

The Cold War in the ‘lower arc'

chapter |17 pages

View from the other side

The early Cold War in Malaysia from the memoirs and writings of former MCP members

chapter |31 pages

The Cold War and British Borneo

Impact and legacy 1945–63 1

chapter |18 pages

The Cold War and its impact on Indonesia

Domestic politics and foreign policy