How did a country that’s basically a giant archipelago of islands not balkanize after independence? And would splitting into smaller nations actually help the people there prosper?
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>How did a country that’s basically a giant archipelago of islands not balkanize after independence
Violently suppressing independence movements with massive amounts of foreign aid.
GAM ( Free Aceh movement) (peace treaty after the Aceh tsunami = Aceh is still in Indonesia's sovereignty but has special authority to have its on law which is sharia) , OPM (Papua independence organization) (ongoing)
Note that Java alone has over half the population of Indonesia, and it shares a religion and language with much but not all of the rest, so there's a sizable core population in a position to do the suppressing.
And the Dutch trying and failing to split Indonesia on independence made said population very suspicious of separatism, seeing it less as "provinces wanting to go their own way" than "outside powers meddling for resource grabs".
the leader was anti-communist so the great powers(america in particular) didn't prop up separatists or turned a blind eye to the repression of separatists
As others have said, the US (and allies) proped up Indonesia and aided them in repressing numerous separtist movements.
One of the most notable was the Republic of South Maluku (the islands of Ambon, Buru, and Seram). The Moluccans here were a largely Calvanist people, and amongst the fondest of the Dutch, making up a disproportional amount of soldiers in the KNIL. When Indonesia was granted independence, soldiers had the choice of joining the Republican Army, dominated by Muslim Javanese, or being demobilised. Instead, they choose to proclaim independence in 1950. Unfortunately, most Ambonese soldiers were outside the islands, and the Indonesians prevented the Dutch from ferrying them over to the islands so long as they weren't under Jakarta's control. Indonesia launched their invasion in 1950, taking Ambon and Buru with heavy casualties, and Seram became the scene of a vicious guerilla war for another thirteen years. The Dutch ended up taking ~13k of the former KNIL soldiers and their families to the Netherlands to settle, against their wishes, and their own government's, as they were barred from returning to their home by Indonesia for fear of bolstering the insurgency. A number of diaspora support the republic still, and in the 2000s, the Maluku Sovereignty Front was founded, though its leader fled to the US.
Addittionally, you have the West Papua Conflict. When the Netherlands granted Indonesia independence, they managed to hold onto Dutch New Guinea until 1963. The Dutch intended to grant West Papua its own independence, on the grounds of them being entirely separate from Indonesia in virtually every possible way. Sukarno saw this as Europeans undermining the territorial continuity of the Dutch East Indies, which he claimed Indonesia was the successor to, in whole, regardless of how the colony originally acquired those territories. The Dutch had the backing of the US, UK, Australia, and numerous other nations, but only diplomatically, and when the Indonesians launched the failed Operation Trikora, the Dutch cut the strings and signed the New York Agreement. Afterwards, Indonesia organised the 'Act of Free Choice', a sham referendum of ~1000 Papuan elders pressured into agreeing to Indonesian sovereignty.
The West Papua Conflict still goes on to this day, and is a famed secret war with a total media blackout in place.
The US got sick of Sukarno's bullshit when he kept pushing the envelope and caused the Malaysian Confrontation, and aided in a coup which put Suharto in power, and as their faithful ally, the US supported him in virtually all conflicts, including the Invasion of East Timor, where it was feared FRETLIN would create a communist state. This would be supported until the end of the Cold War, when it could no longer be justified, and the fall of Suharto allowed for the East Timor referendum, where they rejected 'special autonomy', and led to the East Timor Crisis, which required a UN force to invade and defeat various militias. East Timor was only able to gain its independence on the justification that it had been illegally invaded, as it was a separate, Portuguese colony and therefore not apart of the Dutch East Indies, and because it gained more sympathy from the West to not support Indonesia there.
The Free Aceh Movement and the West Papua Movement differ from East Timor as both Aceh and West Papua were apart of the Dutch East Indies. They also fail to gain support from either superpower during the Cold War, as the Free Aceh Movement had numerous Islamist elements, and the West Papua Movement was not communist, meaning the USSR wouldn't support them, and the US had no reason to support them against an ally. In the modern context, the West tries to keep Indonesia within their camp and not sway to China, hence why Indonesia is officially supported by the US, UK, and Australia in the West Papua Conflict. Interestingly enough, the PNG and Fiji also support Indonesia, as both governments receive generous funding from Indonesia to maintain the status quo. Only Vanuatu, the Solomon Islands, and Tonga support West Papua. Libya under Gaddafi supported them, and Aceh, as apart of his anti-imperialist support worldwide.
mentioned, the Aceh Insurgency is over per the Tsunami Agreement giving them considerable autonomy.
Of the notable seperatist movements of Indonesia (South Maluku, Aceh, West Papua, East Timor), only one has been entirely successful, with another being partial. This is because international precedent aided East Timor, and because Aceh was willing to compromise due to a literal act of God devastating their resolve. Unfortunately for South Maluku and West Papua, they're both outnumbered, outgunned, and outfunded in comparison to Indonesia, so unless they find some backer willing to break Indonesia, they'll likely remain apart.
never seen an Indonesian history effortposter before
Thanks. Indonesia really is a clusterfuck in the same way a lot of post-colonial states exist. European powers carving as much as they could, and creating administrative boundaries which suited administration over existing cultural differences. Had each island grouping been administered as a separate colony, rather than states under the Dutch East Indies, we might've seen more nations.
There was also a wave of sectarian violence between 1999 and 2002 in Maluku Province which the Maluku Sovreignity Front participated in. Indonesia has been settling more Javanese on the island, and attempting to proselytize the population, eventually tipping Maluku Province into having a slight Islamic majority. The Ambonese remain primarily Protestant Christian, the Buru are split roughly evenly, with Muslims in the north and Christians in the south, and Seram, the largest island, contains numerous elements, ethnicities, and faiths, including animists, and even a group of Hindus too. The violence caused half a million to be displaced, and communities to segregate. There's still 70k in the Netherlands who are very vocal about reclaiming their homeland too.
Forgot the image.
Take this with a grain of salt as some areas (South Buru) are incorrectly displayed as majority Muslim, and others (Central Maluku, which includes Ambon) are gerrymandered to give a Muslim majority, but it does highlight Muslim (predominantly Javanese) migration to West Papua, under what's called 'transmigration', taking landless Javanese and using them to populate other areas, intially begun under the Dutch to a much smaller scale, but continued by Indonesia. A new wave began in 2019 which spurred the 2019 West Papua Protests (which likely became full on riots but reports are very limited due to the blackout).
Papua is huge. They are not full
>framing it as if the problem was the gouverment sponsored importation of islam
Again, no. Islam had always existed in maluku, long before protestanism arrived there. The core problem is snowball effect. One person got killed by other, the deceased family take revenge on him or his family members. One family feuds with other family, eventually some families found a common ground between them against other group of families: religion. Things got even more fucked when islamist terrorist saw it as muslim being repressed and joining in. There's no RMS (south mollucas) separatist joining in to fuck the situation up even more tho, because nobody cares about them so they didn't exist anymore.
>Again, no. Islam had always existed in maluku, long before protestanism arrived there.
I never denied its existence.
>The core problem is snowball effect. One person got killed by other, the deceased family take revenge on him or his family members.
Yes, that's typically how sectarian violence begins.
>There's no RMS (south mollucas) separatist joining in to fuck the situation up even more tho, because nobody cares about them so they didn't exist anymore.
It's not the RMS, it's the FKM, and it wasn't the main force behind the violence, but aided Christian militias like Laskar Kristus.
>Things got even more fucked when islamist terrorist saw it as muslim being repressed and joining in.
It's exactly this kind of thought which primarily-Christian separatists took advantage of in the same way. Just like Islamic Defenders Front aiding Laskar Jihad.
Speaking about Maluku, it's kinda disingenuous to act like the South Maluku stuff is still active in the Maluku itself. No one cares about the independence movement in here anymore, right now only the Moluccan diaspora living in the Netherlands who still supporting the Republic Maluku Selatan secession
>it's kinda disingenuous to act like the South Maluku stuff is still active in the Maluku itself. No one cares about the independence movement in here anymore.
Were this true, the Maluku Sovreignity Front would not have participated in the sectarian violence in the 90s and 00s. They even ignored the Manilo II Accord and continued violence in Ambon, and as late as 2014, a group of South Maluku nationalists were arrested in Ambon City for attempting to commemorate the declaration of the republic. Nine of them were charged with treason, which caused protests in Ambon City. There's certainly resistance to Jakarta whether it's widely known in Indonesia or not. They're nothing compared to what GAM was in its heyday but they're still something, even with their leader living in the exile in the US.
Jakarta is intentionally altering the demographic of West Papua by encouraging Javanese migration, it's not about being full, it's about being filled with foreigners.
>Manilo II Accord
Malino II Accord, my bad.
>There's certainly resistance to Jakarta whether it's widely known in Indonesia or not. They're nothing compared to what GAM was in its heyday but they're still something, even with their leader living in the exile in the US.
Yeah, that's basically a dead movement dude
Yeah we say "we are full" as an argument against migration because saying "I don't want migration to alter the demographics" is not an allowable statement to make.
>framing it as if the problem was primarily about protestant mollucans against muslim javanese domination
Nah, the core problem was about the artificially created states made by van mook for his planned United States of Indonesia. No one like it when it happened in 1949. Which is why everyone voted to join the republic almost immediately after the dutch fucked off as per the soveregnity transfer. Sure there's some who refused the dissolution of the federal states, but they're only a small minority. Note how the insurgents you mentioned were mostly former KNIL personnels and how it was easily crushed; most people didn't really gave a fuck about the insurgence.
>Note how the insurgents you mentioned were mostly former KNIL personnels and how it was easily crushed; most people didn't really gave a fuck about the insurgence.
I mentioned how Indonesia took heavy casualties in their Invasion of Ambon, they lost a quarter of their force. Most in the KNIL were prevented from disembarking in Ambon or Maluku by Indonesia and the Dutch. The Dutch had campaigned against a unitary republic and had attempted to convince minorities to fear Javanese domination, this is the core of the problem. The United States of Indonesia was originally a federal state created by the Dutch to lever the minorities against the Javanese.
>basically a dead movement dude
A dead movement which still experiences crackdowns as late as 2014 can't be that dead.
Here's an article showing dissidents being arrested as late as 2020. They don't have as much firepower as GAM did because Libya isn't supporting them and they're in the middle of Indonesia as opposed to the fringe.
You acts like there's some sort of guerilla warfare on the island. Goddamn Yogyakarta has more separatist sentiment back in 2014 when people openly protested the central government than the South Maluku since 2003 until now
>You acts like there's some sort of guerilla warfare on the island
If this is how you interpret it, then you are mistaken. I mean to show politcal activism exists as does dissent.
>Goddamn Yogyakarta has more separatist sentiment back in 2014 when people openly protested the central government than the South Maluku since 2003 until now
Yogyakarta Region also has twice the population as Maluku Province.
>because it happened just after the revolution. after two dutch agressions which each makes them descend into chaotic guerilla warware. that state of an army against the better trained and equipped KNIL soldiers still in ambon?
Your point being? The Indonesians still outnumbered the RSM forces in Ambon 20 to 1. Most of the Ambonese KNL forces were still outside Maluku and prevented from landing by Indonesia and the Dutch.
>Again, no one wanted it. Not even the politicians and nobilities the dutch appointed for the federal states.
Sure, and many didn't want to be of the unitary state either.
>many didn't want to be of the unitary state either
Give example then
What else do you call the RSM Uprising then? They didn't want to be apart of a unitary Indonesia, dominated by Muslim Javanese.
>I mentioned how Indonesia took heavy casualties in their Invasion of Ambon
because it happened just after the revolution. after two dutch agressions which each makes them descend into chaotic guerilla warware. that state of an army against the better trained and equipped KNIL soldiers still in ambon?
>created by the Dutch to lever the minorities against the Javanese.
Again, no one wanted it. Not even the politicians and nobilities the dutch appointed for the federal states.
>The United States of Indonesia was originally a federal state created by the Dutch to lever the minorities against the Javanese
Exactly, and yet the entire thing was dissolved less than a year. The only ethnicity who openly rebelled against Indonesia during the Independence war was Ambonese, and not even Papuan rebelled against Indonesia at that time.
Christian Batak, Hindu Balinese, and Muslim Acehnese were agreed to unite to become one country and didn't really care about "Javanese Muslim" domination at that time.
So yeah, just blaming the Javanese Muslim as the reason on why Ambonese rebelled against Indonesia is pretty disingenuous, considering that Ambonese is not the only ethnicity in South Maluku or South Maluku itself is not the only Maluku territory in Indonesia
>there is no war in Ba Sing Se
They all suffered by the Dutch and spoke Malay, so they renamed Malay to Indonesian and basically made a new nation.
The Dutch standardized a form of Malay which became Bahasa Indonesia, which differs from Malaysian Malay. The state only exists due to Java dominating the others.
There are Javanese people in it, every time there is independence in an area, the Javanese will be the first to oppose, or maybe fight local opposition, this has been tested during the Sumatran revolution in 1946
>Sumatran revolution in 1946
The one who opposed the republic is mostly Malay royalty and the mastermind is PKI, a literal communist who had beef with the Army
One example is not many
>One example is not many
It was a separatist movement made up of many people, and created a thirteen year long insurgency, what do you want, a giant list of individual uprising?
Here's a revolt against proposals to form a unitary state, which accelerated it in fact. You've also got the APRA coup attempt.
These were short-lived, but still show the unitary state was not universally popular, and at least are more examples for you since the RSM's insurgency wasn't enough.
That's not many you dolt, those rebellion also were very unpopular in their respective region.
Sure, it's not literally universally popular, but do you really want to splitting hair by saying that probably at most 2% of the population who rebelled against the unitary state is the proof of that Javanese Muslim domination is the only sole reason why Indonesia exist in the first place?
When there's 95mil Javanese compared to 2.5mil Moluccans, what are you expecting? You've also got another 40mil Sundanese and 9mil Malays who also typically have fewer issues with the Indonesian state, but most non-Austronesian peoples, like Moluccans and Papuans do.
The argument is Javanese Muslim domination, not Austronesian domination retard. Stop changing the goalpost
Ambonese is not the only Moluccan in existence, stop acting like the entire Moluccan archipelago hates Indonesia or something
>Javanese, Malay, Sundanese
All of those ethnicity combined are just 60% of the population, I think if other ethnicities doesn't want a unitary state they could easily rebel against the government don't you think?
How the FUCK is Java more populated than Sumatra and Borneo together? Even more than those two plus many other small islands. What makes it so overpopulated? It's smaller, further away from continental migrations and geographically more or less in the same place. Am I missing something here?
first you need to understand the topography of the region. many parts of the indonesian island archipelago is basically a jungle with various degree of hills and elevation, it why before modern a lot of its cities are built on the coast along the trade routes while the interior remains untouched. java on the other hands have a flat plains on the eastern part of the islands with rivers flowing through it, while ALSO blessed with rich black soils from nearby volcanoes surrounding the plains. now add rice cultivation (the most productive staple foods) on top of all that and you get a small island with the same population of the entire russian country
imagine the smell
What makes Java more flat? Does it have a different origin? Are the others not volcanic islands? Is the relative lack of jungle in Java man-made or was it always like that?
there are other volcanic islands but its the combination of large flat plains+rivers+volcanic soils that is not found anywhere else on the other islands. others island are either too hilly, have too dense jungles or they have flat lands but without rivers and the soil is too dry compared to high quality voclanic soils found on java. as for why is it like that only on java have no idea you'd have to ask a geologist or something
Thank you both
Due to its rich fertile soil, people inhabiting the island develop into feudal-agricultural based society which enables and requires them to have very large population. Their mode of development is more similar to mainland SEA which depends on farms and high labour economy than to other maritime SEAs which mostly depends on maritime-mercantile activities.
Pic related is map of Hindu-Buddha archeological remains; you can see that in Sumatra and Borneo settlements are centered around coast or nearby river, leaving the interior almost untouched, meanwhile in Java it was throughly inhabited all the way to interior