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Cold war polarization, delegated party authority, and diminishing exilic options

Hill, D.T. (2020) Cold war polarization, delegated party authority, and diminishing exilic options. Journal of the Humanities and Social Sciences of Southeast Asia, 176 (2-3). pp. 338-372.

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Several thousand Indonesians were in China on 1 October 1965, when six senior military officers were killed in Jakarta by the Thirtieth of September Movement (G30S) in a putsch blamed upon the Indonesian Communist Party (PKI). The event changed the lives of Indonesians—in China and in their homeland—irrevocably. This article examines the impact of bilateral state relations upon the fate of those Indonesian political exiles in China and assesses the role of the Beijing-based leadership of the PKI (known as the Delegation of the Central Committee) as it attempted to manage the party in exile. Oral and written accounts by individual exiles are drawn upon to illustrate the broader community experience and trauma of exile, which was particularly harsh during the Cultural Revolution. The fate of the Indonesian exiles during this tempestuous period of Chinese politics was exacerbated by the failure of the delegation and, ultimately, by the exiles’ eventual rejection by the Chinese state.

Item Type: Journal Article
Murdoch Affiliation(s): Asia Research Centre
Publisher: Brill
Copyright: © 2020 David T. Hill
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