Oct 5th, 2007, in History, by

Remembering the Communist Party (PKI) in the post Suharto era.


Under General Suharto, after 1984, every September 30th citizens, particularly schoolchildren, were obliged to watch Arifin C Noor’s propaganda film Pengkhianatan G30S/PKI (The Treason of the September 30 Movement and the Indonesian Communist Party), which portrayed the events of 1965, including the murders of six Indonesian Army generals on the night of the 30th, according to the official view, that is, that the murders constituted an attempt by the Communist Party to overthrow the government.

Pengkhianatan G30S PKI

The Executive Director of the Institute for Public Studies (IPS), Fadli Zon, however complains that these days the traditional view of events is being attacked from all sides and ordinary people are becoming confused.

The efforts to change the story of G30S/PKI and to make the PKI look like they were the victims and not the instigators keeps going on and is getting more and more intense.

There were now at least five versions of the events of 1965, he said, some of which blamed the PKI for part involvement in a coup attempt, some exonerated the PKI entirely, and some blamed the CIA and MI6.

Some of these alternative views managed to find their way into school history text books in 2004, which were later banned, and some of them then confiscated and publicly burned, as the authorities attempted to re-assert the primacy of the orthodox view of history.

Fadli said the aim of the PKI was always to establish a dictatorship of the proletariat and they had attempted to do so three times, in 1926, 1948, and then 1965. antara


Akhyar, a resident of Kanigoro village in Kediri, remembers how on 19th January 1965 thousands of Communist Party members attacked a meeting of the Indonesian Islamic Students association, (PII, Pelajar Islam Indonesia) being held in a mosque in the village. Some of the students were tortured and killed, he said.

Akhyar says however that after the events of September 30th local people had their revenge on the communists, and Kanigoro became a centre of anti-communist activity, with the bodies of murdered communists being buried in a mass grave, today called “Makam Parik”. antara


Madiun, like Kediri, was once known as a stronghold of the Communist Party, but the deputy mayor of the regency, Gandhi Yunita, said on 1st October, Pancasila Day, that he hoped this stigma had finally been erased.

Gandhi said that in the 1940’s the PKI moved its base from Solo to Madiun and in 1948 staged a rebellion in the town, led by Amir Muso, in an attempt to establish a Peoples’ Republic. In the village of Kresek in September 1948 Gandhi says communists murdered many clerics, policemen, teachers, health workers, and journalists, before their rebellion was crushed by the Siliwangi division of the Army. tempo

Even to this day the people of Madiun have not gotten over the psychological trauma of the PKI’s atrocities.

33 Comments on “G30S PKI”

  1. Dragonwall says:

    It looks so pathetic that the situation when people who deemed himself to be an authority in Communist and Marxist ends up like a pauper and behaving so immature.

    Why not go into something constructive and see what you could come up with.

    I guess people are more interested in snow balling and paint shots. It will lead to nowhere except squabbling over the topic over and over agin.

  2. Tanto says:

    I was six, in Jakarta, when it happened (G30S). Went to a public school (elementary) in Poland (66-70) during the socialist era. I’ve seen communism in CCCP/USSR (74-77) and lived in Moscow during Brezhnev era.

    I haven’t formally studied nor read any books about marxism, yet somehow I believe must have learned something about communism. The birth of marxism during the industrial revolution was to deter the capitalism and until now, it’s always about fighting the capitalists. Marxism hasn’t evolved very much, I think. It becomes an ‘orthodox’ obsolete thing of the past. It hasn’t proved anything.

    Meanwhile, capitalism has grown and evolved pretty much and gaining acceptance, and proved it worked. It becomes a modern thing, and can adapt and adjust very quickly to any situation (read: country, people).

    Back in USSR, the communism ideology was not to give prosperity to its people, but used to control the people, to gain power. And absolute power tends to corrupt. And USSR was corrupt. The same party leader, army commander, KGB, the same elite now runs the new Russia. Well, not all, some of them, and perhaps playing different role.

    G30S ? Whodunit ? It would be a very long and tedious work to find out and bring those responsible to trial. It was a fight for power. And at the end innocent bystanders, peasants, public servants, ordinary people got killed. The Indonesian people.

    And it all started with disinformation and misinformation.

    From now on let us keep the power in our hands, the people’s power. That is the “information”, the “truth”. Back then, “the truth was out there”.

    Keep blogging folks, keep talking, keep writing, keep sharing the information, and keep telling the truth.

  3. […] PKI As a little 4-year-old kid, watching the Gerakan 30 September massacre movie was traumatizing. Every 30th of September, TVRI would show that movie as a reminder […]

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