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Cablegate: A Rare Moment to Advance U.S. Interests In

VZCZCXRO8238
OO RUEHDT RUEHPB
DE RUEHJA #2279/01 3520928
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
O 170928Z DEC 08
FM AMEMBASSY JAKARTA
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC IMMEDIATE 0998
INFO RUCNARF/ASEAN REGIONAL FORUM COLLECTIVE PRIORITY
RUEHCN/AMCONSUL CHENGDU 0002
RUEHCHI/AMCONSUL CHIANG MAI 0029
RUEHHM/AMCONSUL HO CHI MINH CITY 0238
RUEHHK/AMCONSUL HONG KONG 3174
RUEHPT/AMCONSUL PERTH 1348
RUEAIIA/CIA WASHDC
RHEHNSC/NSC WASHDC
RHHJJPI/USPACOM HONOLULU HI
RUEATRS/DEPT OF TREASURY WASHDC

UNCLAS SECTION 01 OF 03 JAKARTA 002279

SIPDIS

FROM AMBASSADOR HUME TO S, D, P, E, G
DEPARTMENT PLEASE PASS TO TRANSITION TEAM
STATE FOR USAID ADMINISTRATOR FORE
STATE PASS TO PEACE CORPS DIRECTOR TSCHETTER, OPIC
PRESIDENT MOSBACHER, USTR FOR AUSTR WEISEL, EXIM FOR VP
MORIN

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: PREL PGOV KDEM EFIN SENV ID
SUBJECT: A RARE MOMENT TO ADVANCE U.S. INTERESTS IN
INDONESIA

REF: JAKARTA 2197

JAKARTA 00002279 001.2 OF 003


1. This message is Sensitive But Unclassified; please handle
accordingly.

2. (SBU) SUMMARY: 2009 presents a moment of opportunity to
advance U.S.-Indonesian relations, with a creative smart
power approach. This message describes that opportunity and
outlines how we can develop a strong 21st century partnership
between these two large and diverse democracies. We can use
a strategic partnership to advance U.S. interests in
fostering democracy, ensuring regional security, combating
climate change, and promoting education. Although the
current financial crisis and Indonesia's upcoming elections
will bring new pressures here, a strategic partnership with
the U.S. can add important elements of stability and
self-confidence for Indonesia. A smart power strategy could
transform Indonesia into a regional leader that helps the
United States accomplish its goals in Southeast Asia and the
Muslim world. Mission requests authorization to respond
positively to President Yudhoyono,s November 14 suggestion
that the two countries form a strategic partnership and
guidance for launching discussions with Indonesia on the
elements of such a partnership. END SUMMARY.

WHY INDONESIA?

3. (SBU) President Yudhoyono's invitation to form a strategic
partnership is an opportunity for the United States to
promote its interests bilaterally, regionally, and
internationally. Indonesia is now the world,s third largest
democracy, a country that turned back the threat of
terrorism, and the cornerstone of non-Confucian Asia.
Bilaterally, the termination of the travel warning on
Indonesia and the decision of the MCC board to approve
Indonesia for compact status have proven the success of our
counter-terrorism, law enforcement, and government reform
cooperation here. We can--and should--do more in these
areas. Regionally, developing a Southeast Asia policy
without Indonesia at the center would be like negotiating
with the European Union without consulting Germany, France,
the United Kingdom and Poland combined. With 45 percent of
ASEAN,s population, Indonesian leadership is crucial for the
region situated between China, India and Japan.
Internationally, President Bush's invitation to President
Yudhoyono to join the G-20 summit confirmed that Indonesia
has arrived as a global player. Indonesia is the world's
most populous Muslim majority country, and is ranked, by
Freedom House, as the freest country in Southeast Asia. If
the United States wants deeper dialogue with the Muslim world
on managing the challenges of the 21st century, that dialogue
should start with Indonesia. Why not start with a democracy?

WHY NOW?

4. (SBU) The world economic crisis helps create this
opportunity. Increased diplomatic efforts aimed at crisis
management and institutional reforms have boosted our
bilateral relations. Longstanding issues are nearing
completion: negotiation of a Tropical Forest Conservation Act
arrangement; signing of a new Fulbright MOU plus the
possibility of an additional agreement on Indonesian funding
for scholarships for study in the U.S.; resolution of a major
copyright lawsuit regarding Intel; dismissal of a malicious
Avian Influenza lawsuit against the USG; conclusion of an
agreement on defense cooperation; signature of the already
completed Bio-Security Engagement Program agreement; and,
authorization to purchase land for a new chancery. On the
horizon are negotiation of a bilateral Science and Technology
Agreement and a possible material transfer agreement that
will lead to resumption of sharing of avian flu samples. In
addition to rising economic strains, Indonesia faces
parliamentary elections in April and a presidential election
a few months later. Early action to build a strategic
partnership would pay further dividends economically and

JAKARTA 00002279 002.2 OF 003


politically.

REGIONAL PROMOTION OF DEMOCRACY

5. (SBU) The first element in a strategic partnership should
be promoting democracy. As a result of Indonesia's
remarkable democratic transformation, almost 250 million more
people live in a democracy now than just ten years ago. The
recent positive decision by the MCC board has made it
possible to negotiate a major, multi-year program to boost
Indonesia's decentralization and good governance reforms.
Indonesia is already promoting democracy regionally through
the Bali Democracy Forum (BDF). Speaking at the BDF, Foreign
Minister Wirajuda challenged Malaysia's and Singapore's
invocation of "Asian values" by responding that Indonesia
organized the Bali conference to reflect universal values of
democracy and human rights. President Yudhoyono, bilaterally
and through ASEAN, has urged Burma to undertake democratic
reforms. Through a partnership with Indonesia, we can boost
Indonesia's effort to promote democracy regionally and
beyond. Indonesia's size and democratic system make it the
one country able to lead in promoting democracy throughout
the region.

REGIONAL SECURITY AND DEFEATING TERRORISM

6. (SBU) Spanning the region between East Asia and the
Indian sub-continent and between the Pacific and Indian
Oceans, Indonesia is critical to stability in Southeast Asia.
With tacit United States' support and encouragement, only
Indonesia, with nearly half of ASEAN's population, can lead
ASEAN to fulfill its goals for regional security. We should
sign the Treaty of Amity and Cooperation (TAC) in order to
play a greater role engaging ASEAN and participating in
ASEAN-centered regional institutions. Expanded security
cooperation with both the police and the military is at the
core of our new bilateral relationship. Indonesian police
are overcoming the threat of terrorist attacks, without
sacrificing human rights, and the maritime police and Navy
are successfully combating piracy in the Straits of Malacca
through which transits over one-third of global trade. We
should complete the restoration of relations with all parts
of the Indonesian military and police based on their progress
in reform. The goal should be a more professional military
and police, operating within the rule of law at home and
contributing to regional security and peacekeeping
operations.

CLIMATE CHANGE

7. (SBU) The U.S. and Indonesia are environmental
superpowers who must cooperate to save our planet in peril.
Indonesia is first in the world in marine biological
diversity and second in land biological diversity, but is
also the world's third largest carbon dioxide emitter. We
should explore how to partner with Indonesia in multilateral
negotiations for a post-Kyoto framework. President Yudhoyono
has said Indonesia would make binding commitments on the
reduction of emissions in return for incentives to avoid
deforestation. Bilaterally we can work to secure such a
commitment; regionally we can make decisions to preserve
forests and to strengthen the Coral Triangle Initiative; and,
internationally, we could leverage such progress by working
together to move China and India toward accepting real
climate change obligations. Scientific collaboration will be
critical to resolving climate change, and our environmental
partnership would be enhanced by a new bilateral science and
technology agreement.

PROMOTING EDUCATION

8. (SBU) The best way to gain a U.S. partner in the Muslim
world is through the free and open exchange of ideas--values
which Indonesia shares. President Yudhoyono has committed to
doubling the government's educational budget. We should

JAKARTA 00002279 003.2 OF 003


double our educational cooperation budget as well. Our goal
should be to double the number of Indonesians studying in the
United States (only 7,500 now) and the number of Americans
studying in Indonesia over the next five years. We should
work with U.S. high-tech firms to assist Indonesia,s quest
to make information technology part of every child's
education. The Indonesian leaders who were educated in the
United States have been more forward-looking, reform-minded
and willing to collaborate on joint initiatives than their
Indonesian-educated colleagues. There are too few American
colleges and universities working with Indonesian
institutions to develop advanced degrees, to do research, and
to promote language learning, and exchanges. We should
promote university partnerships that create joint degree
programs. The top priorities should be applied science and
technology, entrepreneurship, economic development,
agriculture, and English. Bringing the Peace Corps back to
Indonesia in 2009 is an immediate mechanism to build
people-to-people ties between our countries. Investment in
education will make Indonesia's economy more productive and
Indonesia's democracy more effective. A more prosperous
Indonesia can become a key market for U.S. goods and an open
economy in a region where protectionist tendencies lurk just
beneath the surface. These objectives advance U.S. regional
and global interests.

APPLYING SMART POWER

9. (SBU) Now is the time for a smart power strategy to push
forward U.S.-Indonesia relations and U.S. interests
throughout Southeast Asia. Already the USG has worked well
with Indonesia to counter terrorism, to stamp out piracy in
the Straits of Malacca, to fight narco-trafficking, and to
build strong security and police ties. We have programs to
support Indonesia,s remarkable democratic changes. An
active public diplomacy strategy has turned public opinion
trends in our favor. The policy initiatives suggested above,
when added to ongoing programs, constitute a comprehensive
smart power strategy. Should President-elect Obama give a
speech in the capital of a Muslim country on relations with
the Islamic world, Jakarta would give him the most favorable
platform.

REQUEST TO NEGOTIATE A STRATEGIC PARTNERSHIP

10. (SBU) Last month, President Yudhoyono suggested a
strategic partnership with the United States; we should take
him up on this idea. Foreign Minister Wirajuda has told the
Ambassador he is ready to begin discussions on the elements
of a strategic partnership based upon our shared values of
democracy, pluralism and respect for human rights (reftel A).
Mission requests authorization to respond positively.
Additionally, we request guidance for discussions on a
strategic partnership that includes substantive elements of
democracy, regional security, climate change, and education.

HUME

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