The Kiwi and the Garuda: New Zealand and Sukarno's Indonesia, 1945-1966
This thesis examines New Zealand’s relationship with Indonesia during the Sukarno period, and locates this relationship within the various crucial historical forces, movements, and ideologies of the mid-twentieth century. Indonesia serves as a case study of how New Zealand’s traditional Commonwealth linkages to Britain and Australia, the “winds of decolonization” after the Second World War, and the Cold War shaped New Zealand’s engagement with the newly-independent countries of Southeast Asia. In addition to such international forces, the New Zealand-Indonesian relationship was also influenced by domestic developments in Indonesia and Sukarno’s personal stamp on Indonesian foreign policy. While the focus is on the bilateral political relationship between the two countries, I also examine the New Zealand public debate around two major flash-points in modern Indonesian history: the Indonesian Revolution against the Dutch (1945-1949) and the Indonesian-Malaysian Confrontation (1963-1966)—an aspect of New Zealand-Indonesian relations that has not been well-covered. How did New Zealand’s Commonwealth linkages and its Cold War security policies shape its policies towards Indonesia? How did New Zealand respond to the challenges presented by Indonesian nationalism during the Sukarno period? How did New Zealand’s subordinate relationship towards its main Western allies – Britain, Australia, and the United States – influence its relationship with Indonesia? How does the public debate in New Zealand society around the Indonesian Revolution and the Indonesian-Malaysian Confrontation contribute to our understanding of New Zealand’s response to international issues like decolonisation and the Cold War? To answer these questions, this study draws on a wide range of primary and secondary sources including declassified archival records, government publications, memoirs, scholarly books, journals, and oral recordings.
Advisor: Brooking, Tom; Ward, Vanessa
Degree Name: Master of Arts
Degree Discipline: History and Art History
Publisher: University of Otago
Keywords: New Zealand's foreign relations; Cold War history; Indonesia; Sukarno
Research Type: Thesis