By Khoon Choy Lee
In could 1998, President Suharto stepped down as President of Indonesia. together with his fall, the 3rd biggest kingdom in Asia has plunged into anarchy and political, monetary and social strife. Racial and spiritual clashes, culminating in riots, burning and chaos, became the order of the day. Fissures within the social textile are widening and there's actual risk that this multi-racial, multi-religious and multi-cultural nation may possibly collapse, similar to Yugoslavia and the Soviet Union. during this publication, the writer portrays the Indonesian humans, their background and their cultural traditions. He presents insightful analyses and views of the political cave in of Suharto and describes the chance dealing with the rustic. Describing the range within the historical past, traditions, customs and cultures of a few of the ethnic teams, he presents an figuring out of Indonesia. the writer goals to carry outsider's readability of conception and the journalist-diplomat's event of culture and background to the issues and to talk with authority and sensitivity concerning the demanding situations dealing with an enormous, heterogeneous state that includes 336 ethnic teams talking 250 dialects.
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Additional info for A Fragile Nation: The Indonesian Crisis
P65 10 08/11/2000, 10:24 AM I N T R O D U C T I O N 11 I have always believed that in international relations and human relations, the understanding and appreciation of each other’s culture plays a very important role in bringing about peace and harmony in the world today. It is often the cultural barriers and misconceptions of each other’s motives and intentions that bring about disputes, chaos and wars. For instance, the Javanese normally speaks softly whereas the Arabs often shout when they speak.
As early as 12 July, 1998, non-East Timorese farmers including ethnic Javanese and Bugis from South Sulawesi who had previously transmigrated to Dili, the East Timorese capital, were fleeing from their home town. Hundreds of cars and buses loaded with these transmigrants, many of whom are civil servants and small traders, were taking them out of East Timor.
To each and everyone of them I express my deep appreciation. I am especially grateful to the late Mas Agung and Drs Harteadji of Idayu, an organisation for research on Indonesian affairs, and Mr Anada Surjono Hamongdarsono of Solo for having kindly arranged to take me on a “spiritual tour” of Central Java which provided me with the opportunity to have a deeper insight into Javanese mysticism. I want to express especially my deepest appreciation to Associate Professor Leo Suryadinata from the Department of Political Science, National University of Singapore for taking the trouble to read my script, making corrections and giving valuable comments on the book.
A Fragile Nation: The Indonesian Crisis by Khoon Choy Lee