It is not a hogwash statement to say that Asia may not be the successful continent overall if compared to the European continent. But in the past, the Asian continent is the apex in the term of written literature, unique cultural, land, and the monarchs and this had led for the Western world to travel to this apex land and find a new land that later changed to imperialism. The Western had tried many years to successfully travel to Asian land but due to infighting between them in their region, the plan had been stopped until the solution had been found within their region. The Western world had successfully conquered and annexed many countries in the Asian land in the past and this had led to many permanent changes to the countries that still exist until today.
The bedrock for western imperialism had started when the western countries are determined to travel by sea to find a new land which started to find the spices and natural resources of the Asian region which abundant in the region. One of the famous travelers is Christopher Columbus who had led the Spanish armada that had founded America. Christopher Columbus taught this was Asia but still the Spanish had managed to conquer the Maya and America in the past.
The imperialism in the Asian countries meanwhile had the Portuguese name written all over it as they are the first western imperialism in the Asian countries. The Portuguese had become the first imperial power in Asia when they had found the Cape of Good Hope that enable them to travel via sea from Europe to Asia. Their imperial land started from India to our Malacca sultanate. The fall of the Malacca sultanate is the first time that Malaya had fall to foreign imperialism.
Portugal had conquered the preferred land due to their military prowess and betrayal of the local chieftain which had become the foundation for most of the imperial preceded Portugal to conquer the land. The instability among the locals, monarchy, greed for power, and betrayal had become the source on where the imperial able to conquer the land without any war.
From Portugal comes the Dutch who also conquered some land after taking it over from the Portuguese. Then comes the most successful imperial power the British. The unique story of British imperial they had started as the merchant via the British West India company before the United Kingdom take over the land from the West India company. From the mercantile conquered land via war and false agreement, it had annexed to British kingdom which Queen Victoria had been proclaimed as the queen for all the British land. This is led to the saying of the sun never set in the British empire. The British had annexed India, Sri Lanka, Malaya, Singapore, and also later part annexing Hong Kong from China from the Opium War that happened in the early ’90s. Again the British able to achieve this from the instability that happened from the conquered land.
The British had been successful in amalgamated their culture which the country culture that had led to many beautiful combination architectures, the creation of the railway system in India, laid the foundation for the plantation of the rubber tree, tea plantation, the assimilation of the local with foreigners in their conquered land.
For a long time and a very long time each imperial power had their land conquered to be taken care of as the Dutch had annexed Indonesia, Portugal took over Goa, the Philippines is under American and Spanish control, while other countries in the Asian region annexed by British. The imperial power had enormous prowess and most of the locals had deemed invincible as no monarchies, their armies, military commander, local chieftain able defeat them.
But the imperialism’s power had been shattered financially with 2 of the devastating war the world had ever seen the First World War and the Second World War. In terms of devastation, the second world war is the most impactful. The imperial power had been severely impacted financially and the invisibility too had been deleterious in the eyes of the locals which most of them had been educated in the British syllabus.
Their hegemony, their military prowess, and their financial resources had been drained completely coupled with the passionate call for independence on each country from around the world, the imperial power had lost its power in the Asian region. Which the loss of India in 1947, the British had lost their crown jewel, and by the late ’60s most of the country in the Asian region had gained independence from their imperial power. Sooner or later most of the countries around the world had been successful escapes from the imperial clutches.
What had started as a travel to find a new land had led to desire had led to the subjugation of the land for their profit and benefits in nearly 3 centuries. Some countries had also assimilated and create a new type of people such as the baba dan Nyonya which is the mix of the Portuguese and Chinese in Malacca, the creation of the multiracial ethnic group in Malaysia, the abolition of the princely state in India, the creation of 2 ethnic group that had led a long civil war in Sri Lanka, the creation of new countries in the form Pakistan for the Muslim, the resurgence of East Pakistan to form Bangladesh due to resentment on the language issue and many others. The foundation for this happened precipitate on finding new land, the conquest for their gain, and the difference of opinion in gaining independence.