Indonesia’s democracy is among the world’s most important both to understand and to defend. The world’s largest Muslim country has proven that democracy can emerge and endure in surprising ways and in a surprising place, with intriguing lessons for democratic emergence and endurance elsewhere. Yet democracy is regressing and endangered in Indonesia, in line with distressing global trends. This not only threatens the country’s 275 million citizens with the loss of their hard-fought freedoms. It threatens to deprive global democratic actors and activists of a successful example of the most plausible path to democracy in an age of democratic retrenchment: authoritarian-led democratization.
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