By Adam Schwarz
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Extra info for A Nation in Waiting: Indonesia's Search for Stability
After marriage, Soeharto quickly learned how to provide for the family, and not just his own. In the early years of the republic the army was forced to supplement its budgetary allotments with independent financing. It was c o m o n for regional military officers to hook up with Iocal mrchants to generate addirionat revenue or, more siazply, to impose a tax on eeonomic activities in their area. Soeharto proved to be a particularly able businessman. Xn the mid- 1950s SoeharCa first encountered Chinese entrepreneurs like Liem Sioe Liong and Bob Hasan who, in the New Order, would become two of the most powerful businessmen in the land.
He needed, in other words, a %ay to reject the cabinet without taking action that would force membetrs of the armed forces to choose between Sukarno and Suharto" writes Harold Crouch, The means he chose, %as to give covert approval to a group of strongly anti-Sukarnoist officers who encouraged students to create an atmosphere of chaos in. the eapitale94 The idea was to force Sukarno to turn for help to the hoderate' Soehart-o to prevent a t&eover by A meeting of the full cabinet mok place on X X March.
Incorparates a spoonful of so-and-so" sopinions with a Growing pains X7 dash of such-and-such, always taking care to incorporate a souPGon of the opposition. Then he cooks it and serves his final summation with "OK, now my dear brothers, it is like this and I hope you agree . " It's still democratic because everybody has given his ca Draping himself in nationalist clothes, Sukarno used strident rhetoric and nimble politicking to strengthen the executive branch and keep actual and potential opponents off balance.