When Jokowi met Elon in Texas – University
Andre Omer Siregar (The Jakarta Post)
Houston, Texas, United States ●
Wed 25 May 2022
It was around 35 degrees Celsius on the airport tarmac, as I waited for President Joko “Jokowi” Widodo to descend the stairs of the plane. Next to me were the military attache from the Indonesian embassy and the city commissioner of Brownsville.
“Welcome to Texas, Babak President,” I greeted him, behind my mask. “Thank you, Pack Konjen. Nice to see you again,” he said as he walked slowly towards the Secret Service SUVs. In 2017, I introduced him to the Chief Minister of the Australian Northern Territory to talk about beef cooperation, and since 2018, I have been his interpreter at Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) summits.
It took seven cars 30 minutes to arrive at Boca Chica Beach, home of SpaceX’s starbase, home to the rocket production facility and planned launch site. It is also only 8 km from Mexico, with regular customs and border patrols. Starbase is filled with proprietary technology where the conditions of the United States International Traffic in Arms Regulations (ITAR) apply. Security is intense in and around Starbase.
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