Indonesia. According to countryaah, the parliamentary elections in April were a great success for the relatively newly formed Democratic Party (DP), built around President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono. The DP got close to 21 percent of the vote, against about 14 percent each for the formerly dominant parties PDIP (Indonesia’s Democratic Match Party), led by former president Megawati Sukarnoputri, and the former military regime’s power party Golkar.
In the last election in 2004, the DP still had only 7 percent of the vote, which forced President Yudhoyono to make a number of compromises in the formation of the government. Therefore, it was an already significantly strengthened Yudhoyono who won big in the presidential election in July with just over 60 percent of the vote and who could appoint former Finance Minister Boediono as vice president instead of Golkar’s leader Jusuf Kalla, whom he was forced to cooperate with for five years.
Under Yudhoyono’s leadership, Indonesia has developed into one of Southeast Asia’s most stable democracies, though not without continuing problems. Islamic terrorists still have a tight network across the country, announcing two concerted attacks on luxury hotels in Jakarta in July that claimed 8 lives and injured over 50 people. The main suspect behind the attack was Malaysian Noordin Mohammad Top, previously suspected of a series of terrorist acts in Jakarta and Bali. After an unusually large investigation, he was shot to death by a police raid in central Java in September.
It was seen as a major victory for freedom of the press when the Supreme Court overturned a verdict against the American magazine Time. In 2007, the magazine had been sentenced to pay $ 106 million in damages to former President Suharto’s survivors for claiming that he had pledged multimillion dollars through corruption. In contrast, the fight against corruption became a thorn when the head of the State Commission on Corruption was charged with murder in April and brought to trial in October.
In the highly conservative province of Aceh, the local parliament in September passed a law stating that adulterers should be stoned to death. The law also provides for severe penalties for rape, homosexuality, alcohol consumption and gambling. The provincial governor, with a background in the former separatist guerrilla, vainly appealed to Parliament to moderate the law.
In December, former President Abdurrahman Wahid passed away at the age of 69 after a long illness. In 1999, he became the first democratically elected president after the fall of the Suharto regime, but was dismissed by Parliament in 2001 for incompetence and corruption.
1965 The PKI massacre
This became the prelude to what was to happen in the fall of 1965. On September 30, 7 higher officers were murdered by a group of lower officers – provided with support from parts of PKI. It was to be the beginning of a revolt against the military summit, but the rebellion was crushed after a few hours by Major General – later General and President – Suharto. The event was the signal for a general persecution and mass slaughter of real and supposed communists. About 700,000 communists or supposed communists were killed in just a few months, and 200,000 ended up as political prisoners. Most in rural areas of Java and Bali. These were largely revenge actions for the land invasion the year before. At the same time, Sukarno was becoming too nationalistic for the foreign multinationals.Shell, but in 1965 Sukarno decided to nationalize the oil.
In the wake of the massacre, PKI and all other left-wing organizations were banned, and Sukarno was gradually pushed aside. Suharto took over real political power in March 1966, became “acting president” in 1967 and actually president in 1968. Sukarno died in 1970.
Suharto again transferred the oil exploration rights to the foreign companies – primarily Shell. As oil prices rose in the early 1970s, it probably contributed to an increase in the country’s income, but at the same time the income differences between rich and poor increased dramatically. The living conditions of the many millions did not improve, and many had to leave their farms, search for cities and hut through the huge slums.