This chapter aims to explain why the Indonesian armed forces continue to yield considerable political power in democratic Indonesia. Using the concept of coalitional presidentialism as its analytical lens, the chapter contends that the extent of the military’s political influence is a reflection of the incumbent president’s threat perception as a far as the risk of impeachment is concerned. Rather ironically, the two presidents elected under the direct popular vote regime, Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono and Joko Widodo, have shown the most anxiety over their possible removal by civilian political allies. As a result, they have viewed the military as an integral part of their presidential coalitions in order to counterbalance against possible civilian defections. In return, they have refrained from challenging the armed forces on further reforms.
|Title of host publication||Routledge Handbook of Contemporary Indonesia|
|Editors||Robert W Hefner|
|Place of Publication||London and New York|
|Publisher||Routledge, Taylor & Francis Group|
|Publication status||Published - 2018|