Malaysia’s next king: Islam’s defender, political tightrope walker (just ask Mahathir Mohamad)

Malaysia’s nine hereditary Malay rulers will elect their new king, or Yang di Pertuan Agong, tomorrow – just weeks after the previous king, Sultan Muhammad V, stepped down in an unexplained shock resignation following weeks of speculation. It was the first time a Malaysian head of state had abdicated. Experts and insiders believe the new agong will be the Pahang state ruler, Sultan Abdullah, but just why is the monarchy so important to Malaysia?
1. WHAT POWERS DOES THE AGONG HAVE?…