Episode 29: Anies Through the Looking Glass

In this episode, we give our reactions to Anies Baswedan’s victory in Jakarta’s recent, very heated gubernatorial race. We take a closer look at Anies’ significant win, in which he won by a double-digit margin of 57.9% to Ahok’s 42%, which included a whooping 33 out of 40 of Jakarta’s sub-districts compared to Ahok’s 7. We also hear the reactions of other Jakarta citizens to Anies’ victory and discuss its ramifications, given how much Anies has courted radical Islamic groups during his campaign — a tactic that proved to be instrumental to his success.

We also take this opportunity to dig deeper into Anies Baswedan’s profile and background as an educator and (formerly) moderate Muslim public figure, as well as his weak 2-year track record as Minister of Education and Culture, which ultimately led to his rather public dismissal in 2016. Finally, we wrap up with a pragmatic analysis of what the future holds for an Anies-governed Jakarta, and how we should take this huge loss for the liberal base as an impetus to fight harder & organize better in our nation’s democratic system in pursuit of progressive values.

Thanks for listening!

For those interested in learning more about the topic, we’ve provided links to resources as well as other recommended readings.
Religious tensions rise in Jakarta as crucial vote gets underway — courtesy of CNN
Muslim candidate beats Christian in divisive Jakarta governor vote — courtesy of the Guardian
Electoral Breakdown of the Gubernatorial Race — courtesy of Pinter Politik
An Election in Jakarta, an Omen for Indonesia — courtesy of the New York Times
Conservative Islam Has Scored a Disquieting Victory in Indonesia’s Normally Secular Politics — courtesy of TIME
Tough Road for Democratic Values Ahead — the tensions surfaced in 2016-2017, and the road to 2019 would continue to be tough
Anies Rides Islamist Wave — courtesy of the Jakarta Post
Anies’ Problematic Closeness with Radical Islam — Ahok paid the price for offending them;
Anies dare not question them