The Guardian’s recently arrived correspondent reflects on the remarkable events of her first months in the job

“Re-for-masi, Re-for-masi, Re-for-masi.” It was a warm evening last month as I stood in a field in Malaysia, listening as this deafening chant rang out from a crowd of thousands, gathered in an intoxicating mass. This was history in motion: Anwar Ibrahim, the man who had paid the high price of two jail terms for his attempts to bring reform in Malaysia – and who had coined the “reformasi” chant as the rallying cry for change – had just been released from prison that morning. A free man, he stood triumphant on stage as I watched from the sidelines.

“We have entered a new era for Malaysia,” he shouted, to another euphoric roar from the crowd.

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