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Opinion

Can Mahathir's return save Malaysia?

Bold change is needed to restore Malaysia's competitiveness

| Malaysia
Former Malaysian prime minister Mahathir Mohamad addresses supporters at the launch of the Malaysian United Indigenous Party in January.   © Sipa USA/AP

Malaysians could be excused for wondering if they are stuck in a time warp as Mahathir Mohamad rails against a sinister force wrecking an economy he spent two decades building.

But times have changed. The last time 31 million Malaysians witnessed this spectacle was 1997, and the target was billionaire investor George Soros. Today, the former prime minister is denouncing the current one, Najib Razak. And in a delicious twist of irony, even Soros shares Mahathir's misgivings about Najib's willingness to burn down one of Southeast Asia's most promising economies just to stay in power.

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