Tolerance as implicit order: Militias and sexual violence as practice in Indonesian counterinsurgency operations

Soul Park, Zhi Ming Sim

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Citations (Scopus)
13 Downloads (Pure)


What conditions precipitate militia-inflicted sexual violence during counterinsurgency operations? In our article, we expand on the sexual violence as practice framework by focusing on the issue of commander's tolerance as a form of implicit order. Specifically, we argue that militia-inflicted sexual violence is amplified by two interrelated conditions–the link to the government security forces and the autonomy permitted to the militias in conflict zones. Thus, we refine the logic of sexual violence as practice to understand the finer variations of militia-committed violence. We elaborate our explanations by analyzing Indonesia's peripheral operations in East Timor, Aceh and West Papua.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)18-39
Number of pages22
JournalJournal of Intervention and Statebuilding
Issue number1
Early online date11 Jan 2021
Publication statusPublished - 10 Jan 2022


  • Conflict-related sexual violence
  • counterinsurgency
  • Indonesia
  • militias
  • principal-agent framework

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