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Indonesia broke off relations with China in 1967 and resumed them only in 1990. Rizal Sukma asks why. His answers shed light on Indonesia's foreign policy, the nature of the New Order's domestic politics, the mixed functions of diplomatic ties, the legitimacy of the new regime, and the role of President Suharto. Rizal Sukma argues that the matter of Indonesia restoring diplomatic ties with China is best understood in terms of the efforts made by the military-based New Order government to sustain its political legitimacy. The analysis in this book proves that an absence as well as a presence of diplomatic relations may advance not only the external but the domestic interests of an incumbent government. This is the first major study on Indonesia and China's diplomatic relations under the New Order government. It will be illuminating for research students and lecturers in international politics, international relations, policy making and diplomacy
Using an exhaustive selection of primary sources, this book presents a rich and textured picture of Indonesian politics and society from 1965 to the dramatic changes which have taken place in recent years. Providing a complete portrait of the Indonesian political landscape, this authoritative reader is an essential resource in understanding the history and contradictions of the New Order, current social and political conditions and the road ahead.