No one can deny the fact that Indonesia is a maritime and the largest archipelagic in the world. What does it mean? Having more than 17.000 islands and with two third waters territory, Indonesia has the privilege to claim those att ributes and enjoys abundant natural resources.
In addition, its strategic geographic position strengthens those invaluable natural treasures as the basic capital to bring Indonesian to be a wealthy and prosperous nation; with four choke points, it is a maritime trading hub that connecting Western and Eastern hemisphere.
Nevertheless, the blessing had become a curse. Indonesia had consistently failed to explore and exploit its resources. While history has spoken about the glorious era of Sriwijaya and Majapahit, the maritime kingdoms in Indonesia centuries ago, it has also explained how the rich resources had att racted many adventuring nations to come and trade, and some of them then colonialized the old Indonesia.
After declaring its independence in 1945, the Nation started its struggle to develop the country. Having been suff ered from the bitt erness of under imperialism, Indonesian leaders were aware that Indonesia had to run after its late development to reach the same level with other developed countries. In the period of 1970s and 1980s, it was one of oil exporter countries and rice producers. The great achievements, however, was not last forever. Indonesia experienced economic and political upheaval due to external and internal factors.
Hit by fi nancial crisis in the late 1990s, the Nation fall into systemic political and social turmoil. It was another struggle for National Independence, not to free the Nation from a particular state rule but from underdevelopment menace. Why did such horrible situation occur? What was wrong?
Fortunately, and that everyone should thank Allah SWT for, Indonesia once more can survive from the hard situation under good government and bett er governance. After recovering from problematic conditions, the Nation has resume from the weaknesses and restarted the economic, political, and social developments. It att ains signifi canteconomic augmentation, political stability, and deliberate social welfare.
Although every developing eff orts are still undergoing, the positive signal has fl ashed. Will it continuously develop? Or, will it be a temporary achievement again? Learning from the past, one might have observed and realized that there was something missing in the developmental process a perfect strength has been left behind and come to a conclusion that Indonesia has overlooked its maritime resources a precious blessing from the almighty God.
Being a maritime country is a nature and a fate for Indonesia Kodrat Maritim that has to be thanked and used for the people goodness. The Nation shall re-att ain its glory as a maritime country. The momentum has revived, and this awareness must be shared to every Indonesian throughout the country.
While many leaders had att empted to reenergize the maritime awareness through monumental eff orts such as Deklarasi Bunaken that reiterate Deklarasi Juanda and established “Hari Nusantara,” the maritime development shows a modest improvement.
The eff orts lost its moment along with the time passes by. The great idea seems only resist briefl y and remains in a few people who still concern and the Indonesian Navy that has primarily, always struggled for rebuilding the maritime awareness. Without further due, the Author, personally and together with some important fi gures and offi cersunder the Indonesian Navy supervising, has reatt empted to urge every Indonesian to understand the importance of maritime power for the Nation and disseminate the ambitious vision “Indonesia has to be a strong, wealthy maritime country in the world” through many important occasions, media, and publishing articles and books.
Now, the time has reappeared. The impetus of the vision earns more public att entions when the current President of Republic of Indonesia Ir. Joko Widodo introduced his vision to make Indonesia as World Maritime axis and the fi ve-pillar missions to reach the goal.
Worrying of losing again the momentum, Indonesia has to start developing its maritime power. To achieve the vision, the developmental process requires fundamental guidance to follow: policy, doctrine, and strategy, and the government has to provide supervising, control, and create a condition for the maritime development, for the fi ve pillars.
This book, therefore, is meant to provide comprehensive explanation on why the policy, doctrine, and strategy are important; how they are created, and factors involved in the planning and execution process. It explicitly recommends and articulates the Indonesia’s maritime doctrine and strategy.
Chapter 1 explains the background of the book from the strategic outlook of maritime domain. It clearly asserts the political policy is the prominent factor that allows holistic development in a country. On other words, without political will, a nation can easily develop its country.
To provide a comprehensive understanding, the Chapter also defi nes policy, doctrine, and strategy and their relationship. Chapter 2, the book examines the relationship of globalization, sea power, and world class navy concepts. It strongly assert that globalization has occurred through maritime activities since globalization is about inter-connectivity, and the fi rst, long standing link is through the sea. Therefore, a maritime nation requires a strong sea power, and one of sea power elements is the navy a world class navy is an answer and a must.
The essential of maritime grand strategy for Indonesia is explicitly discussed in the Chapter 3. It defi nes maritime strategy and how Indonesia maritime strategy should look like. In addition, the sea power is essential to execute and achieve the end-state, and Indonesia Sea Coast Guard, in this regard, is seemingly relevant to undertake the task since multi-agencies have been involved to deal all maritime security issues.
Yet, it has some weaknesses such as budget constraints, confl ict of interests, and so on. Chapter 4, in congruent, continues explaining about maritime doctrine. Here, all factors involving in formulating the doctrine are meticulously described, and how it is relevant with concepts that previously explain: policy, strategy, sea power, and so forth.
The book is fi nalized by the explanation of Indonesia maritime strategy in the Chapter 5. It reiterate historical elements that infl uence the articulation of the strategy. The most crucial part is the articulation of the concept that arguably considers all aspects in the strategy and comprehensively formulate the conception.