Abdil Mughis Mudhoffir and Rafiqa Qurrata A’yun take a look at the results of the 2018 regional elections. Rather than reflecting national-level dynamics, they write, the behaviour of political parties and politicians at the local level is defined primarily by opportunism.

Last month, Prosperous Justice Party (PKS) leaders criticised a senior Nahdlatul Ulama (NU) figure for visiting Israel, sparking a furious online campaign of retaliation from young NU-linked activists. Associate Professor Greg Fealy takes a closer look at the escalating tensions and what they might mean for next year’s elections.

The Indo-Pacific is slowly replacing the Asia-Pacific as the dominant security and economic concept in our region. Natalie Sambhi writes that the complex challenges of this vast region should be approached bit by bit, and Australia, India and Indonesia could start by strengthening trilateral cooperation in the region’s southwest sector, the “Indo-Australis”.

According to official government narratives, the military was forced to step in to save the nation from a coup on 1 October 1965. Drawing on her remarkable new book, Dr Jess Melvin explains how rather than reluctantly stepping in, Soeharto and the military used existing military chains of command to actively seize power.

With the 2019 elections fast approaching, Dr Teguh Dartanto presents results from a recent research paper suggesting that in the 2014 Presidential Election, voters in villages with good economic conditions were more likely to vote for Joko “Jokowi” Widodo.

President Joko “Jokowi” Widodo last week met participants of Indonesia’s longest running human rights protest, Kamisan (“Thursdays”). Dr Ken Setaiwan writes that despite the promising photographs that came out of the meeting, his government has little interest in pursuing justice for past crimes.

Over a couple of weeks in early May, Indonesia saw the deadliest spate of terrorist activity since the 2005 Bali bombings. Terrorism researcher Judith Jacob writes that the attacks are consistent with global trends in Islamist militancy but they are also distinctively Indonesian in several important ways.

Recent years have seen significant divisions within Indonesia’s two largest Muslim organisations, Nahdlatul Ulama (NU) and Muhammadiyah. Ahmad Syarif Syechbubakr looks at the causes of these divisions and how they are affecting the organisations’ religious and political positions.

Following the fall of the New Order, Indonesian contemporary artists have enjoyed new artistic freedoms, as well as major commercial success. But Dr Wulan Dirgantoro writes that while the contemporary art boom has provided opportunities, it has also involved significant challenges.

During Soeharto’s 32 years in power, a small number of privileged business tycoons were able to accumulate extraordinary amounts of wealth. Professor Howard Dick and Jeremy Mulholland look at what has happened to Soeharto’s cronies and the relationship between power and capital since the fall of the New Order.

This month marks 20 years since the riots and violence that erupted in cities including Jakarta, Medan and Solo, and mainly targeted Indonesia’s ethnic Chinese population. In light of the recent surge in anti-Chinese sentiment in Indonesia, Dr Jemma Purdey questions whether violence like that of May 1998 could happen again.

Indonesia has achieved remarkable change since Soeharto stepped down. But Professor Tim Lindsey writes that where the country will head next is far from certain, and recent developments suggest its future may be less liberal and less welcoming of foreign engagement.