Sukarno & Aidit

Oct 16th, 2007, in IM Posts, by

President Sukarno and Aidit's communist coup attempt in 1965.

Sukarno and the Indonesian Coup: The Untold Story by Helen-Louise Hunter is an account of the 1965 coup attempt based on declassified Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) documents which places the blame for the murder of six Army generals on September 30th 1965, G30S PKI, squarely on the shoulders of president Sukarno and the Communist Party of Indonesia (PKI).


Sukarno and the Indonesian Coup: The Untold Story.

Hunter, who worked at the CIA's Directorate of Intelligence for 23 years, has written what might be considered the "official" CIA version of events, said to be an account of the 1965 communist coup attempt that details the role of the PKI's "Special Bureau", a super-secret organization within the Communist Party that, Hunter says, conspired with President Sukarno to kill the top, pro-western, leadership of the Army and eventually proclaim a new Marxist Peoples' Republic of Indonesia under the continuing leadership of President Sukarno, but with PKI Chairman Aidit as his named successor.

Sukarno
Sukarno, budding Great Leader.

Many previous accounts of the 1965 coup attempt have either entirely absolved the Communist Party of responsibility, or have admitted the PKI's role, but without detailing president Sukarno's prior knowledge and support of the plan, according to Hunter.


43 Comments on “Sukarno & Aidit”

  1. avatar colson says:

    Only recently Noami Klein published “The Shock Doctrine”. A detailed account of half a century of triumphs of the Friedmaniacs – and the way that came about. A joined effort of military shock and awe – inspired by methods developed by a psychiatrist by the name of Cameron and usually with the help of the CIA – and the shock and awe introduction of absolute laissez-faire economies.

    One inspirational example she mentions is Indonesia 1965; military terror by Suharto plus the Berkeley mafia for Wild West capitalism.

    I tend to believe Klein’s version of the events.

  2. avatar Yuki Tobing says:

    I do believe that Soekarno was not the one behind the Indonesian coup. How come he staged a coup against himself? However, it is unfortunate that he was in Halim, hundreds meter from Lubang Buaya, with some party leaders from September 30th to October 1st.

    I also think that claiming Indonesian Communist Party as the main actor is incorrect. After reaching the big four in the previous elections, Indonesian Communist Party aimed at winning the 1970 elections, and they did prepare for that, thus irrationally killed those six senior generals from army seems to be a political suicide for me. Their chance was not small to gain significant vote in 1970 elections anyway.

    Like colson, I would rather say Soeharto and CIA as those who were responsible for this coup. Probably, they orchestrated this coup and used it to kick out Soeharto and Indonesian Communist Party. Soekarno had always been severely condemning neocolonialism in the land of Indonesia. He even established good relationship with Moscow and Beijing. Moreover, Soekarno endeavored to maintain the harmony between the elements of his political ideology, thus the USA basically feared that Indonesian army could not keep combating the influence of communism if Soekarno ordered to stop it.

    Well, it was just thinkable hypothesis anyway, we still evidence that there are missing link between the contradictory accounts of the witnesses, how can we find the answer if some of those witnesses had been put in trial without court process or even brutally killed?

  3. avatar John Orford says:

    So hold on, the book is about who killed 6 generals? – What I want to know is who was involved in killing hundreds of thousands of innocent Indonesians.

  4. avatar tomaculum says:

    John Orford,
    everyone was involved. Some have organised it, some done it actively, some other looked away and the other escaped or paid for their safety.

  5. avatar Janma says:

    So hold on, the book is about who killed 6 generals? – What I want to know is who was involved in killing hundreds of thousands of innocent Indonesians.

    Well, I heard SBY’s father in law that he and his men and at least a mil or so under their belt on that scoreboard.

  6. avatar simon says:

    Dear Sir.

    Thanks for your publicity about the book Untold story -Sukarno and the Indonesian Coup.
    I would be glad if you could give some information about the 1997 -Economic Crisis that Indonesia experienced.

    Thank you.

    Simon Raj .

  7. avatar WP says:

    Sadly we know actually very little of our own history, though the New Order perhaps managed to convinced us otherwise. But we know little of what really happened. I think it is important to get as close as possible to the truth, so that the people can learn the real lessons from their own history. September-65 is not the only uncovered truth. We have the ’98 looting of Jkt. What and who really moved it?

    The list goes further to the past. 10-th November, celebrated as the National patriots day. Isn’t the shooting of an Allies’ general the starting cause of the following bombardment of Surabaya? He was shooted when inspecting the city under mutual consent. The shooter refused to reveal himself; and no commanders came forward to acknowledge responsibility. If that how it went, I’m not so sure we should celebrate it as a heroic day.

    Diponogoro is perhaps a folk hero No. 1. History lessons at schools always stress his bravery and his war against the dutch. But the war was said to be triggered by dutch decision to build a road across a piece of his property that contained his parent’s tomb. Is this the truth? Should we be proud on commiting people to a 5 years war just to make justice over tombs? Or should we learn a lesson from that?

    Oh well… I guess I’m rambling 🙂 Sorry… I want to say, that as a nation we should invest a lot more seriously in researching our own history; and I consider it a slap in the face that books over us are published by americans, dutch, aussies…

  8. avatar Andrew says:

    Diponogoro is perhaps a folk hero No. 1. History lessons at schools always stress his bravery and his war against the dutch. But the war was said to be triggered by dutch decision to build a road across a piece of his property that contained his parent’s tomb. Is this the truth? Should we be proud on commiting people to a 5 years war just to make justice over tombs? Or should we learn a lesson from that?

    😀 I second that. Some other “heroes” are even worse than that, take Sultan Agung, for example. All we hear is good things about him, but we never learned his dark side, which is of course never written in (Indonesian) history books. I forgot where I read it, but it was a reliable source (read: an academic source with no political agenda) – Sultan Agung was a maniac; he killed his own men for simple, unjustifiable reasons. I’d say he’s no different than Saddam Hussein, albeit probably in a smaller scale.

    He’s still a hero because he fought the Dutch – no question about it… but the moral of the story is, our history book is far from being objective, and definitely isn’t the best way if we want to know the real truth. The history we (and sadly, our children) learn in school has been grossly distorted and polluted by political motives, nationalism, and emotion. Maybe we should call that subject “Indoctrination” rather than “History”

  9. avatar HeavenlySword says:

    I want to know more about the story of mr. Nasution. Anyone has links to share?

  10. avatar riccardo says:

    One big problem is that most people lack the capacity to logically analyze things. To say that Sukarno did it or Aidit did it are just not rational. These things don’t add up logically.

    This is the best, most logical, account I have read (it’s a link to a pdf document):

    http://www.inusantara.com.sg/readings/

  11. avatar riccardo says:

    And this was something I posted last October:

    COVER STORY FOR A COUP

    The 1965 takeover of Indonesia worked perfectly. It is probably the most successful covert operation that the CIA has ever carried out — and this is proven by recently released U.S. government documents.

    On the morning of October 1, 1965, exactly 41 years ago this minute, as I write, the right-wing military, led by Maj.Gen. Soeharto, rid the Indonesian government of all its progressive and leftist figures and placed President Sukarno under house arrest….

    here’s the link for the rest of it..
    http://www.jakchat.com/forums/ubbthreads.php/ubb/showflat/Number/33724

  12. avatar HeavenlySword says:

    great linkies, thanks guys!

  13. avatar Pakmantri says:

    And do not forget the behind the scene actor Pater Josephus Beek.

  14. avatar spew-it-all says:

    So far the most interesting interpretation of the coup is from a historian John Roosa. His reappraisal (Pretext for Mass Murder) focuses on the failed coup and most importantly links it with the crucial event of mass murders, which many scholars seem to ignore. I get the impression that some analysis suggest that sam is double agent, working for the communist and the army. Some say that sam is CIA, planted to plot the coup so that it could be a pretext for dismantling Sukarno and PKI. Another appraisal is saying that Suharto was involved in the beginning.

    Based on post-mortem analysis written by one of coup leader, General Supardjo, Roosa goes on to suggest that the coup was not well-organised. It was unclear who was the leader amongst three people: aidit, sam and supardjo.

    As for the mass murder of Indonesians, I think there were two phases. First one took place soon the army officially launched a campaign of crushing communist to the roots. Killing frenzy spread out throughout Java, was followed by Bali and other regions. Young people from the PKI’s rival organisations were involved. Second phase occured in the prisons. When the mass slaughter ended, prisoners were picked up by the guards to be executed.

  15. avatar Randy says:

    The U.S and Gen. Suharto was the mastermind of G30S. Many war criminal brought to trial , Soeharto who claimed take command of the army never accused about the mass murder (1 million unarmed civilian), The US and Suharto share the same version about the coup. even that night one of the G30s commander report the movement to Soeharto is not considered important historical facts by the Indonesian goverment.

  16. avatar Robert says:

    Pakmantri said:

    And do not forget the behind the scene actor Pater Josephus Beek.

    Here a link to the Community Kompas website with an article about Pater Joop Beek and his role in the 1965/66 events.

    http://community.kompas.com/index.php?fuseaction=home.detail&id=47838&section=92

  17. avatar Janma says:

    As Riccardo said, why would Soekarno coup himself? And the generals that were killed were generals he needed, it makes no sense for him to have them killed, because after they were gone he lost his influence with the Army. Without Yani, Soeharto had a free hand.

    And about heroes of the revolution…. the PKI was made up of many who helped fight for Indonesia’s independence. For godsakes Soekarno was a hero of the revolution, but it didn’t seem to stop them doing away with him hey?

  18. avatar lorenzo says:

    Hey guys there is a good book that can prove whose behind all PKI and what happend to poor civil people that have been accuse to be a member of PKI. Please read it i belive that this book telling he truth.

  19. avatar lorenzo says:

    Oop SOrry the Book is written in indonesian langguage perhaps there is an engglish version it called MENEMBUS TIRAI ASAP.

  20. avatar ahmed shahi kusuma says:

    The victims of the bloodshed, unfortunately, are Soekarnoists also, like Achmad Yani, himself. But however, Parman is the link to British, and one that is killed Soekendro is to American.
    As a marxist, I do not agree with PKI’s ( because of its Stalinistic intepretattion on Marxism, I prefer western Marxism, like Chomsky and Tariq Ali). So, that PKI has more enemies than friends.

  21. avatar Gunung Batu says:

    I think John Roosa’s book Pretext for Mass Murder: The September 30th Movement and Soeharto’s Coup d’Etat in Indonesia well explains about G30S. According Soepardjo, Soekarno, in Halim, asked him to stop the Untung/Sjam’s military operation.

  22. Hi,

    I’m in the process of researching a video I am making about the so called ‘communist coup’ in Indonesia & am searching for an article written by W.F. Wertheim called:

    “Whose Plot? New Light on the 1965 Events”. It was in The Journal of Contemporary Asia Vol.9 Issue 2 1979.

    I can’t find a single copy of it online & have searched for weeks. Informaworld are selling it, but it is expensive.

    Anybody know where there is a copy, hidden away online somewhere?

    CH

  23. avatar Burung Koel says:

    @ Capitalist Holocaust

    I remember this article from my pre-internet study days! You might have to check out your local university library. The journal is readily available in print or on CD-ROM.

  24. to Burung Koel:

    Thanks for that.

    I’ve been trying Universities since you mentioned that.

    Having problems getting the access, though. My girlfriend is a graduate from our local Uni & they don’t have the article in their library.

    Although they will give her access to the Uni Library (for a fee), this does not extend to Inter-Library loans or access to the electronic info. Have come across similar-ish problems when searching other Universities on the web, too.

    I don’t mean to be cheeky, but is there anybody on here who has access to a University electronic data information library, that could locate & email me the following article:

    “Whose Plot? New Light on the 1965 Events”. It was in The Journal of Contemporary Asia Vol.9 Issue 2 1979?

    I’d be ever so grateful.

    CH.

  25. avatar Burung Koel says:

    Hi CH

    Of course you could be really cheeky and ask one of the editors of the journal to email you a copy:

    http://www.tandf.co.uk/journals/journal.asp?issn=0047-2336&linktype=5

    Good luck!

  26. avatar Oigal says:

    it was unclear who was the leader amongst three people: aidit, sam and supardjo.

    Well that is to be expected, is anything as it seems at first glance..So called democracy has not changed that either. Who is running the country at the moment? I am not talking about the big guy, who does the photo shoots. Or even better who was running the country during President Shopalots reign of indifference.

  27. Hey Burung Koel,

    I did what you suggested….mailed the editors….& guess what?

    One of them has sent me the article! I’m over the moon!

    So thanks very much for the suggestion & the link.

    I’ve got one more book I want to read before finishing my research & making the video: Harold Crouch’s “The Army & Politics in Indonesia”.

    I ordered it from Amazon & the cover was the correct book, but pages 1-300 were misprinted. They had printed “Henry Neville and the Shakespeare Code” instead. So I may have to wait another week or 2 for the replacement.

    Anyway, thanks once again.

    CH.

  28. Hi,

    I have finally finished & uploaded my video about the 1965 Coup in Indonesia onto the internet.

    I spent a good 2 months solid researching the declassified CIA & State dept. files to get the documents acknowledging the sending of death lists & such.

    Anybody who’d like to see the video can find it here.

    Or just search for: U.S. Overthrow of Democracy in Indonesia & Slaughter of 1 Million on youtube.

  29. avatar schmerly says:

    @Capitalist Holocaust.. Looks like you’ve put a fair bit of time and effort into this work.

    All I have to say is so what! it’s history! what do you want to do now? you certainly can’t turn the clock back.

    All throughout history there have been slaughters of human beings, Pol Pot, Hitler, Stalin the Japanese the Communists, Africans slaughtering each other Etc., the list is never ending, and humans being what they are this probably isn’t the end yet.

  30. avatar Mbak Sri says:

    well schmerly,
    we can always learn from history, cant we?
    Nothing wrong with lil inquiries 🙂

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