Is SBY cunning?According to a poll
taken in late September before the oil price rise, he certainly remains popular with 63 percent of Indonesians satisfied with his performance in running the country.
But cunning? I'm referring to my posting yesterday when he 'allowed' the TNI chief Gen. Endriartono Sutarto to suggest that it would be good to restore the military territorial function.The backlash
has been quite acerbic. Yesterday former president Abdurrahman 'Gus Dur' Wahid said, "Reviving the territorial command is the wrong medicine for the disease we are dealing with. The move is only a tool to revive militarism. We should oppose that kind of intention as early as possible.
He added, "Who can guarantee that reviving it will make the country any safer? I don't think so. What is certain is that it will bring the country back to an authoritarian state.
Other politicians agreed.
What SBY may have done is to allow Sutarto to show that he remains a committed Suhartoist. With the country coming to grips with its newly gained democratic freedoms, SBY has cleared the way for his choice of TNI chief, a change that is now (over)due
. The key question is, of course, who.
At least SBY now has a freer hand in his selection, freer in that the country clearly wants someone who fits the profile suggested by Effendy Choirie
, the Deputy chairman of House Commission I on Defense and Foreign Affairs.
"We don't want a TNI chief who interferes in political or business issues. We want someone who cares about the welfare and professionalism of soldiers as defenders of the country,