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Daniel,Dylan,Hansson,Jaycob

PakTodungAritonang
Civics
September8,2015
IndonesiasMilitary
ResearchQuestion:
HowcouldIndonesia,apoorThirdWorldnation,havesuchastrongmilitary?

Introduction:
Indonesiasmilitaryiscertainlyofgreatinteresttostudy.Becauseweareextremely
interestedinlearningmoreaboutwar,wewouldbequitefascinatedtoknowmoreaboutour
militaryandtocompareittoothernations.Didyouknowthateventhoughittook70yearsforit
todevelop,itisthebestmilitarycomparedtootherThirdWorldnations(GlobalFirepower)?
DidyouknowthatIndonesiahasthebestmilitaryinSoutheastAsia(GlobalFirepower)?The
inevitablequestionwouldbe:HowcouldIndonesia,apoorThirdWorldnation,havesucha
strongmilitary?

Background:
Beforewecandiscussthequestion,wemustfirstunderstandalittlebackground
information.IndonesiasmilitarywasofficiallybornwhenIndonesiadeclareditsindependence
fromtheDutch.ThiswasbecauseIndonesianeededsoldierstofightforitsindependencefrom
theDutchduringtheIndonesianNationalRevolutionitsarmycalleditselfBKR(Badan

KeamananRakyat)onAugust29,1945,(TentaraNasionalIndonesia).SoonIndonesias
militarybegantodeveloponOctober5,1945,themilitarybegantoformalize,unite,and
organizethesplinteredpocketsofindependenttroopersacrossIndonesiatoensureamore
professionalmilitaryapproachandchangeditsnametoTKR(TentaraKeamananRakyat)
(TentaraNasionalIndonesia).InJanuary1946,thearmybecameknownasTRI(Tentara
RepublikIndonesia)tofurtherprofessionalizeitsarmyinJune1947,thenameTNI(Tentara
NasionalIndonesia)wasgiventothearmy(TentaraNasionalIndonesia).DuringtheNewOrder
EraofIndonesia(19661988),thearmywascombinedwiththepoliceforceofIndonesia
(POLRI),andtheresultingcombinedforcewascalledABRI(AngkatanBersenjataRepublik
Indonesia)(TentaraNasionalIndonesia).However,afterthefallofSuharto,thearmyandpolice
splitup,andsoABRInolongerexistedthearmychangeditsnamebacktoTNIandcontinues
developinguntilthisveryday(TentaraNasionalIndonesia).

Analysis:
Knowingthis,wecanseethatIndonesiaisreallymakinganefforttouniteandboostits
military.Asseenintheparagraphabove,thegovernmentisreallytryingtopursuethegoalto
developthebestmilitaryinIndonesia.Nowonderthat,withenoughperseverance,Indonesia
coulddevelopsuchaprettydecentmilitaryforce.Notonlythat,Indonesiahashadmanyallies
nowandinthepast,whichincludedRussia,Australia,Japan,theU.S.,etc.,whohadgiven
militarysupport,weapons,technology,vehicles,etc.toadvanceIndonesiasmilitary(Country
Data).Currently,IndonesiasgovernmenthasbeentryingtomodernizeIndonesiasmilitary
power,specificallytheweaponssystemthebudgettobespentonIndonesiasmilitarythisyear

(2015)isRp95.5trillion(USD8.05billion)whichwasquitealotconsideringitmorethan
quadrupledsincethestartofthecentury(MilitaryBudget).Alsothegovernmenthasbeen
planningtodoublethebudgetin2016orthefollowingyearsiftheGDP(GrossDomestic
Product)ofIndonesiaincreasesby7%(AntaraNews).
Notonlythat,Indonesiaisthefourthmostpopulouscountryintheworld,andthatgives
quiteanadvantagetoIndonesia..IfthemilitarycoulduseallofIndonesiasavailable
manpower,thearmywouldincludeabout130millionpersonnel(GlobalFirepower):thatsfour
timesasmuchastherearecitizensinAustralia!Becauseofthis,theU.S.(3rdmostpopulous
countryintheworld),China(1stmostpopulouscountryintheworld),andIndia(2ndmost
populouscountryintheworld)arerankedinthetopfivemilitarypowersintheworld(Global
Firepower).Ofcourse,sometimestheequipment,vehicles,weapons,etc.couldmakewar
differenceinawar,butmanpowerisoneofthebasisinmilitarystrength.Whereas,asan
example,ifIndonesiaweretowaragainstAustralia(notthatitwouldhappen,ofcourse),which,
atitsfullest,hasabout11millionpersonnelofitsavailablemanpower(GlobalFirepower),
Indonesiacouldreplaceevery12Indonesiansforevery1Australiankilled.
AlthoughwecanobviouslyseethatIndonesiaisaquitehugemilitarypower,thereare
somedisadvantagesinit.Onedisadvantageiscorruption:Indonesiacouldhavebeeninthetop5
militarypowersifitwasnotforcorruption.Corruptioncripplesquiteliterallyeverythingina
country,andthatleadstoanotherproblem:ifthegovernmentspendstoomuchonthemilitary,it
canforgetitspriorities.Acountrymustfirstfixproblemswithinbeforefixingproblemsabroad.
Indonesiasmilitaryistooadvancedcomparedtotherestofthecountrythegovernmentshould
firstadvancethecountryseconomy,politicalrelations,andeventhegovernmentitselfbefore

themilitaryifnot,Indonesiawouldbelikeacapablebody(themilitary)withoutabrain(the
internalstructureofIndonesia).

Conclusion:
ThedataweresearchedcertainlyprovesthatIndonesiacouldhavethepotentialin
becomingahugemilitarypower.Indonesiahas(1)amotivationtoimproveitsmilitary,which
wasseeninthebackgroundandthegovernmentsincentivetoincreasethedefensebudget(2)
manyallieswhohavehelpedIndonesiasmilitaryeitherindirectlyordirectlyasstatedin
CountryData(3)ahugeamountofmanpowerasfoundoutinGlobalFirepower.Itisno
surprisethenthatIndonesiacouldhavesuchaparamountmilitary.BeingaThirdWorldnation
hasnothingtodowithit,neitherdoesitswealthRussiawaspoorfinanciallyduringtheCold
War,butitstillhadastaunchmilitaryforce.Onlybutforafewdisadvantages,allinall,westill
believethatIndonesiastillhasthechancetobecomealeadingmilitarypower.

WorksCited
CountriesRankedbyMilitaryStrength(2015)GlobalFirepower,15Aug.2015.Web.19
Aug.2015.http://www.globalfirepower.com/countrieslisting.asp
IndonesiaForeignMilitaryRelations.CountryData,Nov.1992.Web.7Sept.2015.
<http://www.countrydata.com/cgibin/query/r6353.html>.
IndonesianMilitaryBudget.MilitaryBudget,2012.Web.7Sept.2015.
<http://militarybudget.org/indonesia/>.
IndonesiaMilitaryStrength.GlobalFirepower,1Apr.2015.Web.19Aug.2015.
<http%3A%2F%2Fwww.globalfirepower.com%2Fcountrymilitarystrength
detail.asp%3Fcountry_id%3Dindonesia>.
PresidentPromisestoAllocateRp210TrillionasMilitaryBudget.AntaraNews,13May
2015.Web.7Sept.2015.
<http://www.antaranews.com/en/news/98921/presidentpromisestoallocaterp210trillio
nasmilitarybudget>.
TNI."TentaraNasionalIndonesia.Web.1Sept.2015.
<http%3A%2F%2Fwww.tni.mil.id%2F>.