Original article: KEPADA SUKARNO-HATTA by: Alkaf Muchtar

Let us notice the last sentence in the Indonesian Proclamation of Independence:

“… On behalf of the Indonesian nation, Sukarno-Hatta.” It seems like there was no harmony lies in this sentence. But, really, that’s where the story about the ups and downs of Indonesia began.

Indonesian independence was organized and built through these two names. There was no harmony in both names, as it appeared in the text of the above proclamation, especially on ideas, yet from these two names comes up an amazing idea. There were many differences between them. But there are many similarities, too

Sukarno-Hatta can be said as representative of two great identities that sustained our nation. Sukarno grew up as a kid from village who were still longing for Ratu Adil (The queen of Justice). While Hatta, came from a coastal society who since the beginning had been open to anything coming from the outside. This acceptance then shaped him as a representative of the early generation of this nation who saw the progress of the West positively and optimistically.

These different characteristics then made them fight for their ideas for the whole time. Every thing started from a question: how Indonesia’s independence was fought?

According to Sukarno the struggle for independence was gained by mass mobilization and agitation. It seemed like Cokroaminoto’s political activity that he saw during his days in Surabaya, and Tan Malaka’s idea of the Mass Action, was a very remarkable lesson for him.
On the other hand, Hatta saw this struggle differently. According to him, people must be awakened and given the instruction. He believes that this would bring a true and powerful freedom.

Their personality can be clearly seen through their autobiographical books. Sukarno, as always, is an enthusiastic person. Hatta is the opposite, he is cool, calm and orderly. This was reflected in his personality when studying in the Netherlands which was written in his autobiography (2015). A book that seems to be a more complicated than Sukarno’s autobiography (1966) written by Cindy Adams. This book seems a little bit narcissistic.

Their personal background gave different color to the democracy in Indonesia. Sukarno, as one who strongly believed that Indonesia’s source of nature and land have their own values, proposed a national party, namely the Indonesian National Party as the prime party to uphold unity and avoid disunity, which is then argued by Sjahrir, Hatta’s close friend during his study in the Netherlands, who considered that this idea would bring Indonesia to the realm of authoritarianism (Ign Sumanto, 2005: 13).

Hatta had different point of view. For him, the existence of political parties is a prerequisite for the establishment of future government and politics for Indonesia’s future. Therefore, as the Vice President, he issued the Declaration of Vice President no. X which guarantees the existence of political parties in Indonesia (Mohammad Hatta, 2011: 115).

The most obvious difference is indeed about Hatta’s criticism of Sukarno’s Guided Democracy concept. It was poured in treatise that now has become a classic; Demokrasi Kita (Our Democracy).

Initially, the manuscript of Demokrasi kita was published in Panji Masyarakat magazine on May. 1st, 1960 which was lead by Buya HAMKA. Due to its editorial stance, the magazine was banned and Buya HAMKA was arrested, without ever being on trial.

In the treatise of Demokrasi Kita, Hatta gave a very strict criticism towards Sukarno. Hatta believed that Sukarno’s concept would not last long.

Hatta himself believed that politics is the unity of a system which have to stand firmly. It should not depend on the charisma of a leader. This proved both Sukarno and Hatta’s difference. Sukarno later believed that Indonesia’s period is in Guided Democracy – which is his own prestige. Hatta on the contrary, he stood strongly on his choice of political stance.

However, their difference of thought and ideas do not even make them disunite in realizing the ideals of Indonesia’s independence.Sukarno and Hatta had sacrificed all their lives for this nation. As Hatta said: “Indonesia is our heirlooms. Our own heirlooms. Let us pray: happy Indonesia! Let us pledge: eternal Indonesia!”

Translated by : Tiara Ulfah (Ar-Raniry English Club)
Date : November 29th 2017
Original article link : http://padebooks.com/kepada-sukarno-hatta/

Tiara Ulfah


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