chapter
55 Pages

The service hierarchy

Historically, the dominant service within the TNI has been the army (TNIAngkatan Darat – TNI-AD) and, until 1998, overall command of the armed forces resided with army appointees. In 1998, the navy’s Admiral Widodo Adisucipto was promoted from assistant commander-in-chief (wakil panglima) to commander-in-chief (panglima besar) following the elevation of then commander-in-chief General Wiranto to the position of Coordinating Minister of Political and Security Affairs. While this was an attempt to break the army’s stranglehold over the position of commander-in-chief, Widodo was widely regarded as being a Wiranto appointee and Wiranto’s influence over the TNI remained strong beyond his dismissal from the ministry in February 1999. The staff of the commander-in-chief includes a vice-Chief of Staff, an inspector general and assistant Chiefs of Staff for logistics, operations, personnel, planning and budget, security, and, until October 2001, for Territorial affairs. The latter position oversaw the TNI’s Territorial function, whereby the army inserted itself both across the archipelago and throughout the social and political hierarchy, and its involvement in social and political affairs, including the appointment and secondment of officers to civil positions (the position was previously known as assistant Chief of Staff for social and political affairs).