Malahayati, The First Moslem Woman Admiral in The World. Part 2- Against the Invaders

In case you missed her early life story, you can found part 1 here.

In 1585-1604, she held the position of Chief of Guard of the Palace of the Secret Commander and Commander of the Government Protocol from Sultan Saidil Mukammil Alauddin Riayat Syah IV. Inspired by herself, she start her career to build a troop of soldiers were made up of around 2000 widows (where the husband martyred against the invaders) who came to be known as Inong Balee troops, Malahayati was appointed as the first admiral led many different victorius battles against the Dutch and Portuguese. Under the leadership of Malahayati, the Acehnese Navy is somewhat large with a fleet of hundreds of warships.

In 1599, Dutch undertaking leader Cornelis de Houtman and his sibling Frederick de Houtman touched base at the port of Aceh for exchange and trade relationship reason, where the historians believe it was just camouflage to take control Melacca Street, due to strategic geographical position for trade. The Sultan acknowledged him calmly until de Houtman brought a Portuguese as an interpreter, which was an affront and insult against the Sultan. The Dutchman, who had just conflicted with the Banten Sultanate in northwest Java before his entry in Aceh, chose to assault. Malahayati drove her Inong Balee Army in light of the Dutch test and after a several violent fights, on 11 September 1959 She prevailing to crush and defeat the Dutch, killed Cornelis during one on one battle on the deck of the ship, and imprisoned his sibling for around two years.

Cornelis de Houtman

In 1600 Paulus van Caerden, who led the Dutch Navy robbed an Aceh merchant ship of its pepper off teh Aceh Coast and sank it. A year after this unfortunate event, in June 1601 Admiral Jacob van Neck and his companions arrived in Aceh and introduced themselves as merchantmen to buy pepper, soon after Malahayati found out that they were Dutch, they were arrested as a compensation for the previous event. This led to many of blocked Dutch Navy expeditions through Melacca Straits. Maurits van Oranje sent two emissaries, Admiral Laurens Bicker and Gerard de Roy, to take a diplomatic letter of apology and some presents for the Sultanate of Aceh. In August 1601 Malahayati and the emissaries made a treaty agreement. A ceasefire was agreed and the Dutch paid 50 thousand gulden as compensation for Paulus van Caerden actions, while Malahayati released Dutch prisoners. After the agreement, the Sultan sent three emissaries to the Netherlands.

Her reputation as a great admiral, as the guardian of Sultanate of Aceh and a good negotiator, led the England Navy and Trader entered Malacca Strait in a peaceful and diplomatic way. Queen Elizabeth I had sent James Lancaster with a letter for the Sultan, where again, Malahayati led as a negotiator, resulted an agreement opened the English route to Java. James Lancaster also rewarded with a knighthood after successfully made this agreement. This agreement also open England to a bigger chances to expand their trade and exchange.

Malahayati was killed in combat while attacking the Portuguese fleet at Teuluk Krueng Raya. She was buried at lereng Bukit Kota Dalam, a small fishing village 34 km from Banda Aceh.

The last part of Malahayati biography can found here

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