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US intelligence reports linked the Indonesian military to the August 2002 murder of two American schoolteachers and an Indonesian in Timika, Papua province. Restrictions on the US Foreign Military Financing (FMF) and International Military Education and Training (IMET) for Indonesia came to be linked to the investigation of this murder. However, a Jakarta court subsequently sentenced a Papuan villager, Antonius Wamang, to life in prison for leading the attack. Six other villagers were given sentences ranging from five to eight years. The same day that Wamang was sentenced, Pentagon officials announced a 'new era of military cooperation' with Indonesia. Yet many irregularities were not resolved during the trial. Questions remain about whether Wamang's group acted alone. Did Indonesian military agents help Wamang stage the attack? Did Bush Administration officials help cover up evidence of Indonesian military involvement so that they could pursue objectives in the war on terror? The idiom of co-production offers insight into ambivalent and contingent collaborations that develop during covert operations and acts of terrorism.

Original publication




Journal article


South East Asia Research

Publication Date





165 - 197