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Jakarta Post

Smiles for now, but miles to go

Malang   /   Sat, October 26, 2019   /  02:42 pm
Smiles for now, but miles to go President Joko “Jokowi” Widodo shakes hands with Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison as their wives Iriana and Jenny look on before an inauguration ceremony at Merdeka Palace in Jakarta on Sunday. (JP/Seto Wardhana)

It was good to see. Edging gingerly from impartial commentator to partial citizen, the sight of Sydneysiders Scott and Jenny Morrison at the recent presidential inauguration fleetingly eased one journalist’s heart, corroded from witnessing too many erosions of goodwill. What appeared to be the only white faces in the VIP rows of Asians, Arabs and Africans sent a positive signal, as the diplomats’ cliché goes. The prime minister’s presence said: Australia shares the triumph of the people’s
will in the world’s third-largest democracy. With the exception of China, which cares nothing for democracy but still sent Vice-President Wang Qishan, most nations outside the region didn’t bother, or made gestures, not statements. United States’ President Donald Trump’s envoy was Transportation Secretary Elaine Chao. She’s 14t...

Disclaimer: The opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not reflect the official stance of The Jakarta Post.