Category: Indonesia

What Does a Vote for an Islamic Party Mean?

Policymakers often wonder if democracy in Muslim-majority countries is empowering Islamists, and look to electoral support for Islamic parties for clues. Scholars of religion and politics frequently respond that “it’s more complicated than that.” In a new paper (PDF), I offer an explanation of why it is hard to learn anything about why voters support […]

Civil-Military Relations in Indonesia and the Problem of Surplus Officers

As Indonesia’s April elections draw near, the country finds itself confronting once again the challenges of separating the country’s powerful military from civilian politics. The specific issue is a structural problem internal to the Indonesian Armed Forces (TNI): a surplus of mid-career officers with insufficient promotion opportunities. This would not be a national conversation were […]