It is not a new thing to hear that Indonesia, being the largest Muslim populated nation, is rumored to have a terrorist organization linked to Al Qaeda. But do you happen to know, that mixed marriage has been a trend there for the last couple of years? Yes, what I mean by mixed marriage is a marriage between Indonesian to a foreigner. If I should make it clearer, then precisely it happens between an Indonesian woman and a white man, with of course Muslim and Christian backgrounds.
In 2002 my cousin got married to an American, then my friend, then my friend's cousin, and then my neighbor, followed by lots of female celebrities. In that year alone, I could tell more than twenty women I knew were married to foreign men.
One can argue that this is merely a consequence of the globalization. As industries as well as technology in Indonesia are growing, more and more natives make contact with foreigners. Numerous local celebrities, however, seem to find out that they get more publicity when they are married to a foreign man. Actress Ayu Azhari, for example, is dating White Lion front man, Mike Tramp after divorcing from her Fin husband.
So why do they marry white men? Because of money, prestige, love, or all combined? I would say the third was my reason, but I cannot speak on behalf of the others.
A more knotty point of view to track down the source of this phenomenon is perhaps from post-colonialism. As this theory suggests, a colony is put to the condition where it loses its original identity as the consequence of the colonization, and is forced to apply the colonizer's identity. After being a Dutch colony for 350 years, I am not surprised to see Indonesian nowadays still think that everything comes from the West is better. To sum up, though I am totally aware that the case is not always true, most people there thinks that white means rich, prestigious, exotic, etc (believe me, they are all good things). If you are white with no talent, just come over to Indonesia and you could become actor, singer, or model. Just name it.