In this episode of the It’s Going Down podcast, we speak with two anarchists from Indonesia about the growing movement, it’s history both in the colonial period and in the aftermath of the post-Suharto era. Our guests discuss how the movement, made up of a variety of tendencies, organizations, networks, and formal and informal organizations, is growing across the country.
In #Indonesia, over 6,000 #Uber drivers have now joined an anarchist organized labor union and have already taken part in a series of militant strikes. Will the revolt against the gig economy spread? Interview from @BRRN_Fed with @JktPpas. https://t.co/I8Qe1Qdb2B pic.twitter.com/wLYPbF8J5N
— It's Going Down (@IGD_News) January 31, 2018
One key manifestation of this growth was the recent May Day marches which took place across the country and involved in some areas, hundreds and hundreds (some reports of up to 1,000) of anarchists. In the face of this growing movement, the police cracked down on May Day marches across many cities in Indonesia against anarchists in particular, arresting upwards of 600 hundred anarchists in Bandung, torturing and abusing many and shaving their heads. Several people are reported to have also been disappeared.
During our discussion we talk about the history of anarchism in Indonesia, from the colonial period when anarchists in the labor movement played a key role in the struggle against colonization, until the post-Suharto period in which anarchist ideas began to grow, first coming out of punk and student activist circles. Our guests then discuss the current movement today, as well as what material conditions in Indonesia are contributing to its growth in popularity. We also talk about the role of the US in State politics, the connections between the anarchist movement and indigenous struggles, and much more.