Islam is not monolithic. It over appears this way in regions dominated by autocracies. Malaysia is the finest example outside the Near East of a flourishing Islamic ally. Malaysia is today at a crossroads regarding its ability to manage how Sharia law is implemented in a culture that has traditionally been favorable to westernization.
The arrest and trial of Anwar Ibrahim could indeed set Malaysia back in its relation to both the west and its prospects for future progress. The government has charged Anwar Ibrahim with sodomy that carries a twenty year sentence. Ibrahim (pronounced E-brah-heem) is already 63 years old and he resides as the bulwark against a radical regime that seeks to usurp the progress that Malaysia has made since the arrival of British and Dutch trading began with early modernity. Currently their is good news.
A judge has postponed the trial in order to death with charges of an improper relationship between a female prosecutor and Ibrahim’s accuser. If an independent judiciary will provide Malaysian security against most radical Islamic regional players, then the next few weeks will determine the future of Malaysia.