One Of Indonesia’s Finest Sons

Posted on May 4th, 2010 at 4:04 pm by Akhyari


Hadi Soesastro, 1945-2010

Many, many people throughout Asia and the Pacific will be saddened to learn that Dr Hadi Soesastro died at 5am Jakarta time this morning (4 May 2010). Last Friday was his 65th birthday. Hadi was the inspiration of much that is good in Indonesia’s policies towards her neighbours in the region and in the cooperative arrangements that have been built in Southeast Asia, within East Asia and across Asia and the Pacific.

From CSIS in Jakarta, of which he was the distinguished Executive Director for many years, he provided the intellectual foundations for Indonesia’s positive regional and global engagements. In the contest of noble against less noble ideas, he was among the most noble and gracious of contestants. After this Forum was established, he naturally became one of its most influential contributors. He never rested in the search for the Holy Grail. In the past year, despite his illness, he seized the moment in defining the way forward for Indonesia, and other Asian players (among which he always included Australia), in global governance through the G20 and continued to work on this mission until his death.

There wasn’t a major constructive initiative in regional economic cooperation over the last several decades in which Hadi did not play a key role, in his quiet, persuasive, unassuming but decisive way. He was one of Indonesia’s finest sons. And we all claim him as our own – because he was, in so very many ways.

Thanks to Peter Drysdale!

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