Indonesian Glossary



Abangan- Nominal Muslims who identify themselves as Moslems but don’t follow many of the Islam rites and rituals as opposed to santri Moslems who tend to be more religious.

Aidit, D. N.- Leader of the Indonesian Communist Party (PKI) who was accused of being the force behind the September 30th Movement

Abdurrahman, Wahid (Gus Dar) – leader of the NU Party who was elected as President of Indonesia in 1999.  Impeached from power for alleged corrupt practices.

“Berkeley mafia”- nickname of Suharto’s economic advisors who were trained at UC Berkeley.  They provided economic expertise to help generate political support for the New Order’s economic policies.

DPR-House of People's Representatives; one of the two represen­tative bodies provided for in the 1945 Constitution

Hatta, Mohammed- Indonesian nationalist leader who served as Indonesia’s first Vice-President.

IGGI- Acronym for Inter-Governmental Group on Indonesia, the international group which rescheduled Indonesian debts after Suharto came to power in 1966.

MPR-People's Consultative Assembly; one of the two representa­tive bodies provided for in the 1945 Constitution.

Nasution, Abdul Haris- Indonesian army general and former Defense Minister who was targeted for assassination during the September 30th Movement.  He managed to escape before being killed.  Author of the concept of the dual function of the army

NU- Islamic Scholars Party.  The major Islamic political party strong in the rural areas of Java.  Gus Dur (Wahid Abdurrahman) led this party in the recent past.

Pancasila (Pantja Sila) Five Principles of the Indonesian Republic which include: Belief in God, National Unity, Humanitarianism, People's Sovereignty, Social Justice and Prosperity. They were devised by Sukarno in July 1945 shortly before the declaration of independence to identify the basic belief's which united all Indonesians despite their other cultural and ideological differences. Under Suharto's New Order, the Pancasila became for a time the ideological vehicle for a corporatist state.

Pertamina- Indonesian National Oil Company that provided a large amount of revenue to the central government as well as the Indonesian military who ran it.

PETA-  Indonesian auxiliary army units established during the Japanese occupation.  Many of its members became high-ranking military officers and political leaders in Indonesia.

PNI- the Indonesian Nationalist Party, a secular-oriented Indonesian party which emphasized nationalism, anti-imperialism and concern for the Indonesian peasantry.

PKI- the Indonesian Communist Party led by D.N. Aidit which was a major political force in the Liberal Democracy and Guided Democracy period.  Strong among the rural peasants a Java.

PDI– Indonesian Democratic Party led by Megawati Sukarnoputri, the successor party to the PNI.  This party is a secular nationalist party that campaigned against corruption.  Distrusted by many high ranking members of the Indonesian army.

PPP-Development Unity Party; the amalgamated Muslim parties

PRRI- the Revolutionary Government of the Republic of Indonesia, the name of the 1958 regional rebellion directed at the national government.  This rebellion was materially assisted by the CIA, but was crushed by the Indonesian army.

Golkar- an association of army-sponsored associations and trade unions that became the main electoral vehicle for Suharto’s New Order government

Sjahrir, Sutan- Revolutionary Indonesian leader of the PSI, the Indonesian Socialist Party.  He served as the first Prime Minister of Indonesia.  He was very popular among intellectuals and Indonesian youth.

Suharto- Indonesian army leader who rallied the Army Strategic Reserve Command (KOSTRAD) to defeat those who led the 1965 coup.  Served as President of Indonesian Republic from 1966-1998 until he was forced to resign.

Suharto, Tommy-  President Suharto’s son whose entrepreneurial activities made him fabulously wealthy.

Sukarno- Indonesian nationalist leader who rallied the Indonesian people to overthrow the Dutch colonial rulers.  Served as President of the Republic form 1949 through 1966.

Sukaroputri, Megawati- the daughter of former President Sukarno.  Presently serves as the President of the Republic of Indonesia

GESTAPU- the acronym for the September 30th Movement, the abortive “communist” coup that resulted in the demise of the PKI and the emergence of the army under Suharto as the new President of the Republic of Indonesia.

Lieutenant-Colonel Untung- Commander of the Indonesian palace guard who launched the September 30th Movement in an effort to protect President Sukarno from a suspected army coup scheduled for Armed Forced Day.