The Republic Of Indonesia Essay

1960 words - 8 pages

The Republic of Indonesia is an archipelago situated in Southeast Asia and Oceania. Indonesia encompasses a total of 17,508 islands and borders Papua New Guinea, East Timor, and Malaysia. Neighboring countries include Singapore, Philippines, Australia, and the Indian territory of the Andaman and Nicobar Islands (4). The purpose of this paper is to assess the overall country of Indonesia in order to further develop situational awareness and provide insight on the country’s status and capabilities. The main points to be discussed are its history, government, foreign relations, economy, demographics, military, the overall threat and culminating with my analysis on Indonesia.
In my opinion due to Indonesia history, the country has found itself struggling to maintain political control of its ethnically divided population but is still gaining ground towards stability as a nation. Indonesia has undergone enourmous amounts of changes through its history. The empires that controlled the archipelago of Indonesia include the Buddhist Kingdom, the Srivijaya Empire and the Hindu kingdom as well as the Dutch kingdom and the Occupation of Japan during WWII (1). This in-turn brought large amount of different cultural backgrounds to Indonesia. Sukarno, an influential nationalist leader and future first President, declared its independence on 17 August 1945 but was not formally recognized until 27 December 1949 (2). The Netherlands tried to reestablish their rule, and an armed and diplomatic struggle ended in December 1949. In August 1999, East Timor requested a referendum for autonomy from Indonesia. In May 2002, East Timor became an independent nation. This indicated smaller groups desired autonomy from the central government rather than support the country. In June 2000, 250 tribal groups in Irain Jaya were also granted special autonomy. Many rebels dismissed the bill requesting full independence. [3] The tensions between the central government and the inhabitants of Irain Jaya still exist to date.
Similarly, Indonesia’s society has exchanged through several types of governments within the last two century. In my opinion, the government has made a drastic change within its structure in order to move towards the stabilization of its society as a whole. The amendments to the 1945 Constitution of Indonesia have greatly contributed to the modification of the executive, judicial, and legislative branches. These major changes occurred after the 1998 resignation of President Suharto. He served as president since 1967, a total of 31 years, consistently being re-elected (1). The president now serves a maximum of two consecutive terms of five years. The president of Indonesia is the head of state, commander-in-chief, and the director of domestic governance, policy-making, and foreign affairs authority rendering him as the top governmental and political figure of Indonesia (4). Additionally, legislative seats had been previously reserved for military officers, who under...

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