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Friday Forum: Mesrob Vartavarian
March 6, 2020 @ 12:00 pm - 1:30 pm
Praetorian Divergence: Military Politics in Indonesia and the Philippines
Dr. Mesrob Vartavarian
Ingraham Hall, Room 206
Noon – 1:30PM
Both Indonesia and the Philippines obtained modern coercive institutions via exogenous intrusions. Euro-American colonial agents developed coercive infrastructures geared toward domestic repression and resource extraction while keeping armed forces subservient to civilian control. The Second World War fundamentally altered these dynamics by setting in motion processes that ultimately politicized both militaries. Indonesian and Philippine military personnel exercised power via praetorian networks that ranged across local, national, and supranational spheres. Yet, from the second half of the 1980s onward, Indonesia’s praetorian network began to contract while Philippine praetorian power continued to expand. This talk attempts to explain why.