Utusan Malaysia (Malaysian Courier) is probably Malaysia’s most controversial newspaper.
Starting out in 1939 , it has mainly represented the views of Malay ‘nationalist‘.
However, Utusan’s nationalist have changed dramatically. Until 1961, Utusan Malaysia (then called Utusan Melayu) was considered an independent and trustworthy newspaper representing the interest of Malays.
However, in 1961, Utusan Melayu was taken over by UMNO who found that their continued barrage of UMNO was exposing UMNO as an elitist organisation not serving the interest of the general Malay populace. (Read the interview with the Editor of Utusan Melayu when it was taken over by UMNO)
Today, this UMNO (United Malay National Organisation) controlled newspaper is usually the instrument through which virulent attacks on non Malays and non Muslims are done and promoting UMNO’s interest specifically.
However, since the Badawi Administration, Utusan Malaysia’s racist stance has steadily increased to dangerous precedents. Several commentators have raised concern over the direction that Utusan Malaysia has taken. (Read here and here )
Surprisingly, its racist stance has even irked senior UMNO members as it is seen as undermining UMNO’s efforts to win over non-Malays (Read here).
That Utusan Malaysia is racist is undeniable. What is worrying is the Prime Minister Najib’s deafening silence especially in the face of his 1Malaysia policy.