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The Anti-American Century

 | 
Ivan Krastev
, 
Alan McPherson

How “Big Brother” Became the “Great Satan”

Changing perceptions of the United States among the Muslim communities of southeast Asia

Farish A. Noor

Texte intégral

  • 1 For the needs of this paper, our definition of “Southeast Asia” shall include all the countries th (...)
  • 2 For a more detailed overview of the security concerns affecting Southeast Asia and the governments (...)

1Anti-Americanism is not a new phenomenon in Southeast Asia,1 but over the past few years, and certainly in the wake of the attacks on the united States of America on September 11, 2001, it has taken on an increasingly religious character. While the ASEAN (Association of Southeast Asian nations) region has always been troubled by insurgent, autonomous and militant movements,2 the rise of religiously-inspired militancy with the United States as its primary focus is a new phenomenon that troubles the ASEAN heads of state. Understanding this new phenomenon of religiously inspired anti-Americanism requires some understanding of the history of the ASEAN region itself, and of its convoluted relationship with the United States, which has been a major player in Asia.

  • 3 America’s return to the Philippines was not without precedent as it had previously colonized the c (...)
  • 4 The American presence in Malaysia came in the form of intelligence operatives that were sent to ac (...)
  • 5 For an account of such direct government-to-government cooperation between the United States and A (...)

2America’s presence in Southeast Asia was felt during and immediately after the end of the Second World War. The United States came stepping into the void that was left by the former colonial powers, and established a firm foothold in countries like Vietnam, Thailand, and the Philippines3 as well as Malaysia4 and Indonesia. America’s universities became the models for Southeast Asian universities, America’s industries were emulated and replicated locally, and American political culture was seen as the standard against which constitutional democracies should be run and managed. American technocrats, consultants and specialists worked hand-in-glove with their Southeast Asian counterparts, helping to re-model the economies and societies of the region according to the American prototype.5

3It should be noted that America’s entry into Southeast Asia at the time was widely welcomed by the governments and political elites of the region, who regarded the united States as a crucial ally during the cold War and the sole power that could stop the advance of communist forces that were on the move in countries like Vietnam, the Philippines, Indonesia and Malaysia. The American government in turn openly endorsed and supported the governments of Malaysia (under the leadership of Tunku Abdul Rahman (1957–1969), Tun Razak (1970–1976) and Hussein Onn (1976–1980), the Philippines, Thailand, South Vietnam as well as those of Laos and Cambodia.

  • 6 See Pilger, John. A Secret Country (London: Vintage Press, 1990); and McMahon, Robert J. The Limit (...)

4From the mid-1940s to the mid-1960s, much of the support shown by Washington to its Southeast Asian allies during the cold War was guided mostly by Realpolitik concerns. Yet, as commentators like Pilger (1990) and McMahon (1999) have argued, the conduct of the anti-communist campaign in Southeast Asia was to incur a devastating cost in terms of the loss of lives of Southeast Asian citizens and the loss of respect for the united States.6

5In Vietnam, the American government proved to be the most stalwart and influential supporter of the embattled regime of Ngo Dinh Diem. Due to extensive media coverage of the war, news of the Vietnam conflict spread throughout the region and became the rallying point for anti-American activists in the neighboring countries of Southeast Asia. In the Philippines, the legacy of American involvement has likewise been a sore point with many local opposition groups. While the Vietnam War was raging, Washington was keen to ensure that the Philippines would not fall under the sway of the communists. Through agencies such as the Joint U.S. military Advisory Group (JUSMAG) and the American-created Philippine civil Affairs Office (CAO), the American government managed to reorganize the Philippine armed forces and intelligence services and place pro-American leaders like Ramón Magsaysay in key positions of power.

6A similar scenario was developing at the same time in the neighboring country of Indonesia, where American–Indonesian relations had been problematic from the beginning. When Indonesia unilaterally declared its independence from the Netherlands in 1945, it was the United States that attempted—on more than one occasion—to block subsequent attempts by the Dutch to regain control of their former prized colony. However, the Indonesian government under Sukarno was unwilling to accept any form of aid or military assistance from the United States for the simple reason that such a move would jeopardize Indonesia’s neutral stance. In April 1955, in an attempt to keep the countries of the developing world beyond the sphere of influence of both the Western and eastern blocs, Indonesia hosted the Bandung conference, bringing together the leaders of the newly independent countries of Asia and Africa.

  • 7 For an account of the last days of Soekarno and the destruction of the Indonesian communist Party, (...)

7American intervention in Indonesia intensified in September 1958 when the Eisenhower government authorized its agencies to lend covert support to anti-government militias on the islands of Sumatra and Sulawesi that had turned against the central government of Indonesia. This tit-fortat game of cold War insurgency and counter-insurgency only came to an end in 1965, following the ill-fated putsch against the government initiated by Lieutenant-colonel Untung and members of the Indonesian communist Party (Partai Komunis Indonesia, PKI).7

8In the anti-communist crackdown that followed, it was the United States that was behind the right-wing elements of the Indonesian army and security forces. Working with other right-wing militias (including the more radical and violent youth Wings of Islamist groups like the Nahdatul Ulama), the republican forces of the Indonesian army virtually exterminated the entire PKI membership and its support networks.

9From 1965 onwards, the United States (with the backing of Australia and Britain) was the biggest supporter of the “new Order” regime of General-turned-President Suharto. With the rise of Suharto and the military elite, Indonesia embarked on a ferocious purge of leftists and communists; forcibly annexed Irian Jaya in 1968 and east Timor in 1974. Suharto’s government was dominated by American-trained military officers, such as General Benny Moerdani and General A. m. Hendropriyono, who were opposed to any form of dialogue or co-operation with the country’s Islamist parties and movements.

10America’s support for anti-Islamist regimes like that of Suharto is one of the reasons why the image and perception of the United States began to shift from the 1970s onwards. During the 1950s to 1960s, the Islamist movements in Southeast Asia still regarded the United States as an important ally in the struggle against communism, an ideology they regarded as fundamentally un-Islamic.

  • 8 See Kamarazaman, Yacob. Bersama Anwar ke Penjara (Petaling Jaya, Transgrafik, 1994), 45, 61.

11But by the 1970s, due to the growing perception of the United States as a dominant military power in the region, Southeast Asia had become a fertile ground for dissenting groups, agents and actors primarily opposed to their own governments, and by extension the American government that was seen as the main pillar of support behind these local regimes. In Thailand, Malaysia, and Indonesia, 1974 marked a turning point in local politics as student movements in these countries rose in protest against their own governments and what they regarded as their Western backers. The event that sparked the round of protests in all these countries was the proposed visit of Japan’s Prime Minister Kakuei Tanaka to Southeast Asia. By then Japan was seen as yet another pro-Western country bent on exerting its will and economic clout against a defenseless Southeast Asia, and the condemnations of both Japan and the united States were uttered in the same breath.8

  • 9 For an account of the anti-American demonstrations in Malaysia, see ibid.
  • 10 Ibid.

12During the protests of 1974, students in Bangkok and Kuala Lumpur marched to the Japanese embassies as well as the American embassies, calling for the withdrawal of American troops in Vietnam.9 it is important to note, as Kamarazaman does, that by the 1970s the discourse of anti-Americanism in predominantly Muslim countries like Malaysia and Indonesia had shifted from a secular-leftist to a more Islamist register, and that many of the campus-based student movements were led by Islamist activists.10

13The first step to understanding how the discursive shift to Islamism and its political expression took place in the 1970s has to begin by taking into account how the local political dynamics of a predominantly Muslim society ends up limiting the range of options for that society to act upon. In the case of the countries of Southeast Asia, this occurred as a result of the anti-communist struggle, which in turn eliminated a number of other democratic alternatives along the way. The second factor that contributed to the emergence of Islamism as a counter-hegemonic force in these societies is the process of globalization, which hastened the rush towards a global market and the dismantling of the older institutions of the state in the developing South. Developments in communications technology also brought the Muslim world closer together, and helped Islamist opposition groups in Southeast Asia interact with one another while keeping abreast of developments in other parts of the Muslim world.

  • 11 For an account of the development of ABIM and other student campus-based Islamist movements in Mal (...)

14By the mid-1970s, new student-led Islamist organizations such as the Malaysian Islamic youth movement (Angkatan Belia Islam Malaysia, ABIM) that consciously rejected the developmental model of the West, valorized the Islamist policies of Iran and Pakistan, and hoped to struggle towards an “Islamization from below” in their own countries emerged in Malaysia and Indonesia.11

15During the 1970s ABIM condemned the American government for its role in the conflicts in the ASEAN region, particularly America’s involvement in the internal politics of Vietnam, Cambodia, Laos, the Philippines and Indonesia. Supportive of the global trend of Islamic resurgence in the 1970s, ABIM then became the biggest supporter of the 1979 Islamic revolution in Iran. The leadership of the ABIM movement (then under Anwar Ibrahim) then praised the Iranian revolutionaries for their commitment to Islam. In 1979, the leaders of ABIM visited Iran and met personally with the Ayatollah Khomeini. Upon their return from Iran, they called for an “Iranian Liberation and Solidarity Day,” to be held on March 16, 1979.

  • 12 For an analysis of the developmental problems in post-colonial Southeast Asia and its related soci (...)

16The emergence of movements like ABIM in Malaysia was symptomatic of the changes taking place in Southeast Asia’s Muslim society as a whole. At the same time, developments in Egypt, Iran, Indonesia, Malaysia, Pakistan, Algeria and other countries demonstrated that the post-colonial elite in these Muslim states were unable to carry out their developmental projects to the end, as many post-colonial leaders instead succumbed to the temptation of living in now-vacant colonial palaces.12

  • 13 For a detailed elaboration of the meaning and use of the term “Islamism,” see Sayyid, Bobby S. A F (...)

17As the crisis of post-colonial governance deepened, the sphere of contingency expanded to engulf practically all avenues of government and law. There seemed no hope of finding a cure within the system, so those who were disillusioned merely looked beyond the frontier of the state. Here they found what they were looking for: Political Islam, or “Islamism.”13

  • 14 See Lubeck, Paul m. and Bryana Britts, “Muslim civil Society and urban Public Spaces: Globalisatio (...)

18Islamism began as an urban phenomenon and developed within the cosmopolitan environment of the modern Muslim city. The battle for the future of Islam was fought between secular elites and the newly emerging defenders of political Islam who combined the discursive tools of Islamist ideology with the instruments of modern communication, mass mobilization, networking, and political organization. It is no coincidence that the current wave of global Islamism has been most visible in Muslim states with the highest urbanization rate. it should also be noted that the first major Islamist revolution in the world took place in Iran, one of the most urbanized Muslim countries in the world (50 percent in 198014).

  • 15 Sayyid. A Fundamental Fear, 73.

19Funded in many cases by Saudi Arabia and other Arab donors and patrons, these Islamist movements quickly took up the social responsibilities that were once the prerogative of the state. They set up alternative education networks, communication and logistical infrastructures, and local organic linkages, as well as propagating their own brand of often conservative and oppositional Islamic politics. This was meant to serve as a corrective measure against what they regarded as the imposition of secular, liberal and Westernized ideas and values by their own Westernized elites and governments. Seen in this light, Islamism became, in a sense, the Muslim world’s response to globalization and Western values. As Bobby Sayyid has argued, “The rise of Islamism was only possible when the availability of Islam could be articulated into a counter-hegemonic discourse.”15

  • 16 For an analysis of the discursive shift in the rhetoric of PAS’s leaders during this period, see A (...)

20In the 1970s and 1980s, Islamist groups in Southeast Asia—like their counterparts in Iran, Pakistan, and the Arab world—began to articulate this new Islamist discourse with vigor. At its crudest, it manifested itself in the anti-Western rhetoric of the Ayatollah Khomeini, who summarily condemned the United States as the “Great Satan.” The simplistic oppositional dialectics of Khomeini were taken up in earnest by the Islamists of Southeast Asia, particularly by the leaders of the Malaysian Islamist party, PAS.16

21It was in the 1980s and 1990s that the discourse of oppositional politics in the predominantly Muslim countries of Southeast Asia began to shift to the Islamist register. in Malaysia this was due in part to the fact that the only opposition parties and movements that could mount an effective challenge to the state were Islamist groups like PAS and ABIM. In Indonesia the depoliticization process had forced the Islamists to go underground and alter their tactics, opting for a culturalist approach to Islamization that sought to Islamize Indonesian society rather than its political institutions.

  • 17 For a more detailed account of the anti-American and Anti-governmental polemics used by opposition (...)
  • 18 Ibid, 344–349.

22In both Malaysia and Indonesia the growing popularity of the Islamists was based on their claim that they were prepared to condemn the West (notably America) for its treatment of Muslims abroad, as well as on their willingness to accuse their own governments of being pro-American lackeys. in time the critique of American foreign policy (notably America’s perceived support for Israel and its policy towards the Arab world) was conflated with the critique of the weak governments of Malaysia and Indonesia, who were unable or unwilling to speak out on behalf of Muslims worldwide.17 Following Israel’s invasion of Lebanon in 1982, the leader of the Malaysian Islamic Party PAS, Ustaz Yusof Rawa, openly declared that his party was in opposition, not only to America and Israel, but also to all the Muslim governments not prepared to take part in the war in Lebanon in support of the Muslims there. This necessarily included the Malaysian government as well. PAS’s leaders also expressed open support for groups like Hizbullah, which they regarded as allies in the struggle against both American military hegemony and Zionism.18

  • 19 Ibid, chap, 5, vol. ii, 450–566.
  • 20 Ibid, 453.
  • 21 Ibid, 455. Though it should be noted that despite the threats issued by the leaders of the Malaysi (...)

23Throughout the 1980s and until the 1990s, the form and content of the oppositional discourse of the Islamists in Malaysia and Indonesia took on a more evidently anti-American character.19 By the time of the first Gulf War of 1990–1991, America had come to figure prominently in the discourse of oppositional Islamist parties and movements in Southeast Asia such as PAS. Denouncing the United States as an “imperialist power,” the leaders of PAS expressed their support for Saddam Hussein and the people of Iraq. PAS’s president Ustaz Hadi Awang was one of the international Islamist leaders who traveled to Baghdad to demonstrate support for Saddam’s government,20 while PAS leaders called for all Muslim countries to support the jihad against the united States and israel.21

  • 22 Ibid, 672.

24The anti-American rhetoric of the Islamist groups in Southeast Asia was sustained throughout the 1990s and reached its peak following the attacks on the united States on September 11, 2001 and President George W. Bush’s declaration of a global “war on terror.” in Malaysia and Indonesia, Islamist groups and parties like PAS, Laskar Jihad, Fron Pembela Islam (FPI) and the Majlis Mujahideen Indonesia (MMI) orchestrated massive demonstrations against the invasion of Afghanistan by American-led coalition forces. On October 8, 2002, the same day that American forces began their invasion of Afghanistan, the leaders of PAS mobilized their members for the biggest demonstration of Islamists in the streets of Kuala Lumpur. carrying banners and posters with slogans like “We love Jihad,” “crush America” and “Taliban are our brothers,” members of the party demonstrated before the gates of the American embassy in Kuala Lumpur while similar demonstrations were being carried out by Islamist parties and movements in Indonesian cities like Jakarta, Jogjakarta, Surakarta, Bandung and Surabaya.22

  • 23 Ibid, 669.
  • 24 Mohd Irfan Isa, Osama an excuse to wage war against Islam: Nik Aziz, 10 October 2001, available at (...)

25PAS’s leaders then came out with their strongest anti-American statements yet. The party’s president Ustaz Fadzil Noor, stated, “The united States has attacked a small and defenseless country like Afghanistan without showing the world strong reason or proof; (and) they are war criminals. if the Americans are really waging a war against terrorism, why don’t they attack Israel, who are terrorists against the Palestinians?”23 For the Murshid’ul Am (Spiritual Leader) of PAS, Tuan Guru Nik Aziz Nik Mat, the attack on Afghanistan was clearly an attack on Islam and Muslims in general. Speaking out in defense of the Taliban government, he claimed that “the u. S. hates the Taliban because the latter is firmly committed to upholding Islamic values. Osama bin Laden is just an excuse for the u. S., which has time and again shown its hostility towards Islam, to wage war against the religion.”24

26In neighboring Indonesia, groups like the Front Pembela Islam and Lashkar Jihad immediately mobilized and took to the streets as soon as America announced its unilateral move to confront its foes abroad. But by 2002, Indonesia was also caught in dire straits of its own. The country’s President, Megawati Sukarnoputri, flew to Washington to discuss the implications of Indonesia’s involvement in the international campaign against Osama bin Laden and the Taliban—though it was soon clear that the sensitive matter of Indonesia’s spiraling debt problem was also on the agenda. Realpolitik considerations aside, the Islamist parties and movements in Indonesia were less pragmatic in their approach to the problem. The Indonesian President was warned by the country’s Islamist groups (and members of her own government, such as Vice President Hamzah Haz) that any attempt to appease the Americans would lead to a backlash at home with heavy political costs. The Philippines was likewise forced to deal with a backlash from Islamists in the troubled province of Mindanao in the south. Soon after the American response was made known to the international community, the Abu Sayyaf group renewed its attacks on Filipino government installations and outposts all over the province, and a new wave of hostage taking was soon underway.

27The Bush administration’s unilateral “war on terror” has therefore had many long-term and far-flung consequences for Muslim and non-Muslim relations. For the countries in Asia with sizeable Muslim minorities, it reopened old wounds after decades of internal civil conflict, and served as a justification for clamping down on local Muslim resistance movements.

28President Bush’s support of strong ASEAN leaders who are willing to join him in his global “crusade” against terrorism has reawakened widely held fears of “Big Brother” America intervening in the affairs of Southeast Asia all over again: Washington’s active endorsement of the anti-terror campaign in ASEAN; its recognition of Thailand as a major “non-NATO ally;” and its open endorsement of ex-military strongmen like Thailand’s Thaksin Shinawatra and Indonesia’s American-trained Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono have all contributed to the popular perception that America has simply reverted to its old tactics of gunboat diplomacy and mercenary support of dictators working to serve the needs of Uncle Sam.

29Washington’s relative indifference to the methods and tactics used in the so-called “war on terror” in the ASEAN region has also been a cause of concern for Islamists, non-Governmental Organizations (NGOs), human rights groups, and civil society organizations all over the region. The resurgence of violence in Southern Thailand from 2004 to 2006—which received relatively less media coverage from the Western media compared to the problems in Darfur (Sudan), Palestine, Afghanistan or Iraq—confirmed the suspicion held by many Southeast Asian Muslims that Western double-standards were again at work and that the lives of Muslim were worth much less than that of non-Muslims.

  • 25 See Noor, Mohd Musa and Wong Yeen Fern, “Demos end Peacefully at US embassy,” 28 July 2006, availa (...)

30The negative image of the United States persists for many of the Islamist groups and parties of Southeast Asia. Following the Israeli invasion of Lebanon that began in mid-July 2006, Islamist parties and movements like Malaysia’s PAS and ABIM and Indonesia’s wide array of Muslim groups from the Majlis Mujahideen Indonesia to the Fron Pembela Islam once again took to the streets of Kuala Lumpur and Jakarta to denounce the United States alongside its allies Britain and Israel. While flags and effigies of American leaders were set on fire, the leaders of Islamist movements like PAS reiterated their calls for Muslim unity against the united States, which has by now been defined as the primary threat to the Muslim world and the enemy of islam.25 clearly, the days when America was seen as the ally of the Islamists in the common struggle against communism are long over. The shift in the Islamists’ perception of the United States from friend and ally to enemy was not accidental: it has as much to do with the effects of American foreign policies abroad (in particular in the Arab and Muslim worlds) as with the Islamists’ reaction to those policies.

31Today the image, standing, and perception of the United States in the eyes of Southeast Asia’s Muslims is at an Alltime low. Rightly or wrongly, America is seen and presented by the Islamists of the region as the true inheritor of neocolonialism in ASEAN today. Among the Muslims and Islamist activists of the Southeast Asian region, America’s standing and image has been doubly damaged: firstly due to its support of anti-Islamist and anti-Muslim regimes in the case of the Philippines and Indonesia; secondly for its perceived double-standard in dealing with Israel and the Arabmuslim world.

32Linked to America’s support of repressive regimes in the ASEAN region was its singular failure to identify, assist, and promote genuinely progressive Islamist actors, agents, movements, and trends. This is particularly true in the case of Indonesia, which, as the world’s biggest Muslim country, could and should have been allowed to play the pivotal role of model Muslim state for other developing Muslim countries in the South, as well as Malaysia, where political Islam is now a major factor on the Malaysian political landscape.

33America’s intervention in Indonesian affairs, as we have alluded to above, was primarily directed towards Channelling military support and technical aid and training to the Indonesian regime and its military supporters within the Armed Forces of Indonesia. From 1965 to 1998, the United States paid little attention to the evolution of political Islam in both Malaysia and Indonesia, preferring to work almost exclusively with the governments of both countries. It was only in the wake of September 11, 2001 that Washington began to demonstrate a keen interest in the development of political Islam in Indonesia. But it was Washington’s indifference to the growing currents of Islamist activism in Indonesia and Malaysia over the past four decades that has left it out of touch with the new actors and agents on the local scene.

34The Islamists’ negative perception of the united States in turn has to be understood in the context of the wider background of a resurgent Asia that feels itself burdened by an overbearing partner who has simply thrown its weight around the region. if Southeast Asia’s Islamists are angered by America’s militarist adventures abroad, the economists and business community in Asia are angered by its fiscal neglect and follies as well. if the Islamists are outraged by America’s mismanagement of affairs in Afghanistan and Iraq, the economists and business community of Asia are dismayed by the Bush administration’s singular failure to impose even a modicum of discipline and normality on the American–Asian trade balance. Southeast Asian NGOs are, in turn, angered by the United States’ intransigence on matters such as the Kyoto Treaty on the emission of polluting gases, as well as the fact that the United States remains the nation that consumes and pollutes more than any other on the planet.

35America’s failure on both fronts—economic and political-strategic—is the real reason why the image of the United States is so poor in the Southeast Asian region at the present moment. Thanks in part to their role in exacerbating the economic inequalities and deficiencies in the developing world, successive American governments have helped create the socio-cultural, political and economic circumstances that favor the rise of radical groupings in search of a change and a new socio-political order. America’s cavalier and mercenary approach in dealing with the “communist threat” in Southeast Asia in the 1960s to 1980s achieved its military goals, but, in the course of doing so, it also eliminated scores of other progressive, secular political trends that might have served as the foundations of a democratic civil society in the future. in the void that was created with the extermination of the leftist opposition came the Islamist conservatives, to whom the united States was initially oblivious, and of whom it was only recently wary.

36Washington’s failure to appreciate the fact that there are really two ASEANs—divided between the islands of wealth, power and cosmopolitan culture of the cities and the underdeveloped seas of poverty and relative backwardness in the countryside as well as the urban slums —means that America’s contact has been solely with the urbanized and Westernized elite of the countries in the region. In the predominantly poor Muslim-dominated countryside and urban ghettos of Malaysia, Indonesia, Thailand and the Philippines, it is a different story altogether. It is there that the battle for hearts and minds has been won, not by the united States and its ASEAN allies, but by the Islamists of Southeast Asia.

Notes

1 For the needs of this paper, our definition of “Southeast Asia” shall include all the countries that were the founding members of the Association of Southeast Asian nations (ASEAN), that is Malaysia, Indonesia, Thailand, Singapore and the Philippines. It also includes the countries of mainland Southeast Asia, which are Vietnam, Laos, Cambodia and Burma/Myanmar, as well as the tiny Malay Sultanate of Brunei.

2 For a more detailed overview of the security concerns affecting Southeast Asia and the governments of ASEAN, see Andrew Tan, ed. Non-Traditional Security Issues in Southeast Asia (Singapore: institute of Defence and Strategic Studies, Select Publishing, 2001).

3 America’s return to the Philippines was not without precedent as it had previously colonized the country after defeating and ousting the former colonial power, Spain. For a detailed account of America’s colonization and re-colonization of the Philippines, see Wolff, Leon. Little Brown Brother: How the United States Purchased and Pacified the Philippines (Oxford: Oxford university Press, 1991).

4 The American presence in Malaysia came in the form of intelligence operatives that were sent to accompany the British military establishment that was ordered to restore government in Malaya following the defeat of Japanese troops in 1945. For a detailed account of the American presence in Malaya in 1945–1946, see Noor, Farish A. Islam Embedded: The Historical Development of the Pan-Malaysian Islamic Party PAS, 1951–2003 (Kuala Lumpur: Malaysian Sociological research institute, 2004), 44–45.

5 For an account of such direct government-to-government cooperation between the United States and ASEAN countries such as the Philippines, see Broad, robin. Unequal Alliance: The World Bank, The International Monetary Fund and the Philippines (manila: Ataneo De manila university Press, 1988).

6 See Pilger, John. A Secret Country (London: Vintage Press, 1990); and McMahon, Robert J. The Limits of Empire: The United States and Southeast Asia since World War II (New York: Columbia university Press, 1999).

7 For an account of the last days of Soekarno and the destruction of the Indonesian communist Party, see Degge, John D. Soekarno: Biografi Politik (Yakarta: Penerbit Sinar Harapan, 2001).

8 See Kamarazaman, Yacob. Bersama Anwar ke Penjara (Petaling Jaya, Transgrafik, 1994), 45, 61.

9 For an account of the anti-American demonstrations in Malaysia, see ibid.

10 Ibid.

11 For an account of the development of ABIM and other student campus-based Islamist movements in Malaysia and Indonesia in the 1970s, see Ahmad-Noor, Islam Embedded.

12 For an analysis of the developmental problems in post-colonial Southeast Asia and its related social impact, see Rigg, Jonathan. Southeast Asia: A Region in Transition (London: Unwin-Hyman, 1991).

13 For a detailed elaboration of the meaning and use of the term “Islamism,” see Sayyid, Bobby S. A Fundamental Fear: Eurocentrism and the Rise of Islamism (London: Zed Books, 1998).

14 See Lubeck, Paul m. and Bryana Britts, “Muslim civil Society and urban Public Spaces: Globalisation, Discursive Shifts and Social movements” in Urban Studies: Contemporary and Future Perspectives, eds. Eade, J. and C. Mele (London: Blackwell, 2001).

15 Sayyid. A Fundamental Fear, 73.

16 For an analysis of the discursive shift in the rhetoric of PAS’s leaders during this period, see Ahmad-Noor, Farish. “Blood, Sweat and Jihad: The Radicalisation of the Discourse of the Pan-Malaysian Islamic Party (PAS) from the 1980s to the Present” in The Journal of the Centre for Southeast Asian Studies (Singapore) 25. no. 2 (August 2003).

17 For a more detailed account of the anti-American and Anti-governmental polemics used by opposition Islamist parties and groups in Malaysia in the 1980s and 1990s, see Noor, Islam Embedded, chap. 4, vol. ii, 329–449.

18 Ibid, 344–349.

19 Ibid, chap, 5, vol. ii, 450–566.

20 Ibid, 453.

21 Ibid, 455. Though it should be noted that despite the threats issued by the leaders of the Malaysian Islamic party, not a single member of PAS actually traveled to Iraq to take part in the Gulf War.

22 Ibid, 672.

23 Ibid, 669.

24 Mohd Irfan Isa, Osama an excuse to wage war against Islam: Nik Aziz, 10 October 2001, available at malaysiakini.com.

25 See Noor, Mohd Musa and Wong Yeen Fern, “Demos end Peacefully at US embassy,” 28 July 2006, available at malaysiakini.com.

© Central European University Press, 2007

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