The Indonesian Coup and Mass Killings, 1965-1967: A Reconceptualization of the Infuence of the Cold War


  • Angela Keys Charles Sturt University
  • Drew Cottle Western Sydney University



This article explores how the local situation – politically, economically and socially – contributed to the occurrence in Indonesia of two crucial and interlinked Cold War events, the Indonesian coup and massacre. The article explains how an Indonesian army general, Suharto, was able to utilise Cold War narratives to instigate anti-communist fervour, which resulted in the massacre of more than half a million alleged communists.  Suharto was able to gradually usurp power and eventually replace Sukarno as the president of Indonesia.  It is argued that the convergence of domestic factors was critical to these events, which can be understood as a localised Cold War.

Biografia do Autor

Angela Keys, Charles Sturt University

Teaches sociology at Charles Sturt University in Bathurst, Australia.  Her research interests include sociology, politics, political economy, and Asian studies.

Drew Cottle, Western Sydney University

Is senior lecturer at Western Sydney University where he teaches politics and history. He has diverse research interests which include international political economy,  American, Asian and Middle Eastern politics, international communism, liberations struggles in the Third World and studies in global capitalism