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In CWIHP Working Paper No. 67, "Ambivalent Alliance: Chinese Policy towards Indonesia, 1960-1965," Taomo Zhou argues that from 1960 until 1965, the governments of the People’s Republic of China and the Republic of Indonesia were bound by a shared aspiration to replace the bilateral world order and enjoyed a remarkably cordial quasi-alliance with one another. At the same time, however, Zhou demonstrates that the official bilateral relationship faced domestic social resistance, exemplified by two waves of anti-Chinese protests in Indonesia.  Filling in the gaps in this important but understudied period in Sino-Indonesian relations, Zhou also challenges the existing nation-state-centered narratives of China’s Cold War experience by combining top-down geopolitical analysis with bottom-up processes, and tracing diplomacy in practice and migration on the ground. Through a critical reading of documents from the Chinese Foreign Ministry Archives in Beijing, Zhou contends that the interactions between China and Indonesia were shaped by three transnational forces—the waves of decolonization in Asia, Africa and Latin America, the overseas Chinese communities, and the international communist movement.

Taomo Zhou is a Ph.D. candidate at the Department of History, Cornell University. She can be reached at tz84[at]cornell.edu.

To read CWIHP Working Paper No. 67, "Ambivalent Alliance: Chinese Policy towards Indonesia, 1960-1965," click here or see the attachment below.

About the Author

Taomo Zhou

Ph.D. candidate, Department of History, Cornell University.
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Cold War International History Project

The Cold War International History Project supports the full and prompt release of historical materials by governments on all sides of the Cold War. Through an award winning Digital Archive, the Project allows scholars, journalists, students, and the interested public to reassess the Cold War and its many contemporary legacies. It is part of the Wilson Center's History and Public Policy Program.  Read more

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The History and Public Policy Program uses history to improve understanding of important global dynamics, trends in international relations, and American foreign policy.  Read more

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