Amir Sjarifuddin

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The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Sjarifuddin, Amir


Born 1907 on the island of Sumatra; died Dec. 19, 1948, in the village of Ngaliang, on the island of Java. Figure in the Indonesian national liberation and communist movements.

Sjarifuddin studied in the Netherlands and graduated from the law institute in Batavia (Jakarta). A leader of the national revolutionary party Partindo (founded 1931), he was arrested by the Dutch colonial authorities in 1933 and remained in prison until 1935. He helped found the Gerindo in 1937 and became its chairman, as well as the general secretary of the Indonesian Political Union.

During the Japanese occupation of Indonesia (December 1941 to 1945), Sjarifuddin was a leader of the resistance movement; in 1943 he was arrested and condemned to death, a sentence that was commuted to life imprisonment. Released after Indonesia declared its independence in 1945, he became minister of information in the first government of the Republic of Indonesia, established that year.

During the Indonesian people’s difficult struggle against the Dutch colonialists, who from 1945 to 1949 tried to regain control over Indonesia, Sjarifuddin served as minister of defense from late 1945 to January 1948 and head of the government from July 1947 to January 1948. From 1945 to 1948 he held the posts of chairman and vice-chairman of the Socialist Party. After the Socialist Party and the Workers’ Party (Labor Party) merged with the Communist Party of Indonesia in 1948, Sjarifuddin was elected to the Politburo of the Central Committee of the CPI. In 1948 he became chairman of the Popular Democratic Front, a bloc of leftist parties and organizations influenced by the CPI. During the Madiun incidents of 1948, Sjarifuddin was captured by punitive forces and shot without a trial.


Zhizn, otdannaia bor’be, 2nd ed. Moscow, 1966.
The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
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References in periodicals archive ?
There was also, to some extent, communist influence in the legal leftist party Gerindo, led by Amir Sjarifuddin. In its own periodical the PKI followed Moscow's line: a People's Front should stop the advance of the totalitarian powers, Germany and Japan.
Shortly before the Japanese occupation of 1942-45, when Britain, the United States and the Soviet Union had become allies, the Dutch handed Amir Sjarifuddin a substantial amount of money to organise resistance against the Japanese.
Amir Sjarifuddin was back in Jakarta on 2 October to take up his task as Minister of Information.
'After that, the major mistake committed was the resignation of the Amir Sjarifuddin cabinet, voluntarily and without resistance.' They completely forgot Lenin's teachings about state power.
The late Jacques Leclerc's essay on Amir Sjarifuddin, Indonesia's prime minister between 1947 and 1948, focuses on his experiences in the critical early years of the Indonesian Revolution.