Islamic Radicalism in a Democratizing Indonesia

Authored by: Robert W. Hefner

Routledge Handbook of Political Islam

Print publication date:  December  2011
Online publication date:  March  2012

Print ISBN: 9780415484732
eBook ISBN: 9780203154144
Adobe ISBN: 9781136577239


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After the fall of President Muhammad Suharto’s ‘New Order’ regime in May 1998, Indonesia began an uncertain but hopeful transition from authoritarian rule. During its first five years, the transition was torn by two contrary currents. On one hand, the country made steady progress toward the consolidation of democratic institutions, including free and fair elections; freedom of the press, assembly and labor; the strengthening of a balance of powers between the executive and the legislature; and the withdrawal of the armed forces from Parliament. On the other hand, the early years of the post-New Order transition witnessed outbreaks of ethnoreligious violence, the spread of hardline Islamist paramilitaries, and several spectacular terrorist attacks, including the infamous Bali bombings of October 2002 in which more than 200 people (most of them Western tourists) perished.

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