it is staring us right in the face
Location, Location, and Location...
Of little note in the media at the time but very important to navalists was this announcement from last fall. Japan's commitment to technical support of Indonesia's shipbuilding modernization efforts. https://www.jica.go.jp/indonesia/english/office/others/press221003.html
This is common sense, Commander. What's your over/under State f*cks it up by 2030?
I recall on a trip to Singapore in '98 having hotel trouble due to the number of people trying to get away from some unpleasantness in Indonesia at the time. I agree with Mr. Richburg in that they have exceeded my expectations.
With respect to "Help Indonesians build on their democratic institutions starting with the rule of law," I think this is a case of "Do as we say, and not as we do."
If this US intends to lead by example in this regard, we have to completely clean several federal institutions and initiate some concrete measures to restore the Old Republic. Right now the Empire is winning.
"What should the USA and the other Quad nations do over the next dozen or so years?"
Not a goddamned thing. Let them figure it out. No need to send a Samantha Power with an USAid horde to waste US taxpayer dollars and in the end create enmity.
The urge to meddle in other peoples affairs, when our house is such a mess, must be eradicated.
Don't forget the historical enmity between Australia and Indonesia. All politics is local.
Richburg mentions East Timor. For clarity, East Timor was a Portuguese colony for 200 years until Portugal walked away from it in 1975. Indonesia rushed troops in and occupied it against the will of the populace. The UN intervened around 1991 and all parties agreed to a referendum in 1999. East Timor gained their "Not Part of Indonesia & Never Really Was" status as an independent nation in 1999. The point is that East Timor was no more a part of Indonesia than Brunei, Sarawak, Sabah or Papua-New Guinea ever was.
Insightful. The read of the Quad is exactly correct, and what it is trying to do, and opening its arms to others who may benefit is exactly right. Targeting Indonesia and committing over time is the right approach. Sadly, partnering with nations tend to come and go as fads, more so in the absence of a meaningful strategy.
Claude Berube (@cgberube) shared update about Quad reinforcements:
Time to trade with Malaysia. A one for one swap for their old F-18 and Su-30 for new F-18E/F.
But bur what will the Non-Aligned Movement think? (Wrings hands)
Is not Indonesia the major regional threat pacing Australian defense? Or is that another -sia?