Nasty Indonesia – Accident, environment or design?
By Raharjo Yusuf & Fachrur Rozie
May 30, 2006, 07:32
There can be little doubt Indonesia, Bali included, is one of the nastiest places, people wise on earth. With soaring crime rates which the authorities do nothing to admit through transparency it seems or worse, by deliberately suppressing the facts. With law enforcement a corrupt sick joke where anyone less connected or wealthy than you can be put in jail for a falsely contrived crime abusing to the ridiculous extreme Indonesia’s too often poorly written and contradictory criminal codes, all via the mafia police of Indonesia and their colluding judiciary. Allowing a drug crazed member of wealthy Suharto connected families to use an unlawfully concealed gun to shoot an innocent waiter because they had to inform them their credit card had been declined, to get light jail sentences which they never reportedly ever serve anyway. Therein such apparent parity of Indonesian official crime statistics Vs convictions with other countries almost certainly means very few criminals actually go to jail in Indonesia, just victims. With secular hatred, apparently condoned by local or even state authorities resulting in school children being beheaded by mobsters, worshipers being denied a place to pray or worse being burnt alive in their churches, de facto strict Islamic “Sharia” law being pushed through parliament under feign of the totally inappropriately named “Anti-Pornography Law”, atheism and Judaism being outlawed, with mass murderer terrorist groups such as Jemaah Islamiah being tolerated and their members caught of acts against foreigners and non-Muslims having their jail sentences continually reduced, Indonesia is clearly an archipelago of state inspired secular hate. With abject refusal to accept wrong doing in clear human rights abuses such as East Timor, Aceh and Papua. With official lies through grinning amateur spin merchants we call “wobblers” designed to get wallets and their owners to Indonesia by deliberately misleading them about terrorism, health and corruption risks. Indonesia is the hair on the boil on the backside of humanity when it comes to decency, but why?
Is it because the people of Indonesia are born just plain nasty? No, it is not that, it is the culture of hate and theft that comes from the top. It is the lack of true law enforcement with police officers just out to make a buck through extortion, delegating “policing” to local mafia style vigilantes renowned and feared for their arbitrary un-judicial murders. It is the Indonesian police’s impunity in league with the wealthy families of Indonesia from not just upholding the law, but also from operating within the law themselves; such is their wholesale corruption. The symbiotic and self-perpetuating existence (to the exclusion of all others) relationship between wealth (which also means politics) and “police” ensuring justice, hope and potential is stripped from everyone else. It is because disaffected people currently dare not express their frustrations and rage at the true purveyors of their own sad existence; their own government, businessmen and authorities. So with the all too apparent blessing of their elders and betters [sic] they find scapegoats for their hatred against outsiders. Therein lies the reason Indonesia is such a nasty country, because the authorities from the president down are the reverse of role models and public defenders. Indonesians are no different to anyone else. They have the same brain capacities as every other human being and many decent Indonesians exist to their credit in spite of the fact they get robbed or otherwise afflicted often on a daily basis. Indonesia is such a nasty whole of a country because of the “culture” of its leaders who clearly are not happy people themselves despite their wholesale illicitly gained power and financial “rewards” by token of how they seem only to ever smile for cameras and when they are putting a knife in someone’s back. “Ah, but the whole world is like that!” some say. Yes it is but not to such an extreme scale because, as a whole, institutions in more civilized countries function as they are described. In Indonesia officials know the words and that the people and even world expects them, but their actions do not live up anywhere near to what they say. Although it seems everyone around the world has a well founded healthy distrust for politicians, civil servants and even big businessmen, in Indonesia the people deservedly hate their leaders. Sure, Indonesia is a microcosm of the world, but it is a distilled and concentrated version of all that is bad.
So what has been floating to the top recently in nasty Indonesia?
Self-alleged Muslim cleric Abu Bakara Ba'asyir, spiritual [sic] head of the terrorist group Jemaah Islamiah which is still not outlawed by the Indonesia Authorities (hmmmm) is to have his “sentence” reduced yet again allowing him to be freed from jail on June 14th this year. Comforting thought (not) for all the families of innocent westerners slaughtered by terrorists who get their enlightenment from this toothless old Wahibist (sub sect of the Sunni Muslim faith based primarily in Saudi Arabia and Yemen who allow murder, even of fellow Muslims, and export their doctrine around the world mostly under the smoke screen of Islamic schools). This remission has angered Australians and their Foreign Minister Alexander Downer has met with his Indonesian counterpart Hassan Wirajuda to ask that Ba'asyir gets no further reductions in jail term, which the west sees as particularly light in the first place. Seems Australia’s multi-million dollar gift to the Indonesian Government (see our report: Australia’s shame) counts for nothing, nada, zero.
So called “Conservative” Muslims, which is a contradiction in terms and indicates the sanctity given to these extremists, are demanding the passage of Indonesia’s very nasty, unconstitutional (that never stops them), assault on anything or rather anyone non-Muslim law, the delusional or perhaps provocatively named “anti-pornography” bill, which will prevent tourists and Balinese alike from so much as showing their shoulders or kissing in public; yes, the anti-pornography law is Indonesia’s answer to the Trojan horse, the Sharia law pig in a poke. They massed outside parliament recently, apparently unopposed by police, to demonstrate their ignorance and hate both by demanding an Islamic State, which seems to be what the anti-porno bill gives them anyway, plus blame the west for the immorality in Indonesia in order to “destroy the Muslim youth”. Funny isn’t it, in the non-literal sense, how the thriving Indonesian child prostitution business, which appears to be 100% domestic and dare we say Muslim community grown, is somehow outside this far reaching dictatorial anti-secular law? Somehow fashion wear is the work of the devil, yet girls and boys as young as 12 being forced into the sex industry, often by police officers, within the heart of the purist [sic] Muslim community [sic], having toothless dirty old men to cheating newly web husbands pay to be “pleasured” by them is OK! What a singularly nasty, duplicitous, phony law and band of supporters.
Meanwhile, what can only be seen as a move to provoke the situation even more, Indonesia has sent masses of armed forces, aircraft and naval vessels to the border with Timor Leste (East Timor). Why? Because of the internal conflict in East Timor between unpaid soldiers and government forces. Is this conflict in any way likely to threaten Indonesian security? Why no, it clearly is not despite an initial never to be repeated statement from the Indonesian military earlier that it was closing its border with East Timor to stop Timorese “insurgents” from entering Indonesia!. If armed fighters were planning to enter Indonesia, why would they wait until they were fighting each other? So why send your nasty forces to the border Yudhoyono? After all Timor Leste President Xanana Gusmao has formally asked Malaysia to send troops to protect your mutual border with your former colony; which surely really means to protect Timor Leste from Indonesia. There are only three likely reasons for this deployment; one is to make the situation worse, another is to deny humanitarian aid to civilians, the other is to reinvade poor East Timor, or any combination thereof of course. Naturally this is the only way Indonesia’s large yet poorly motivated, lack luster trained and often under equipped armed forces can appear to be anything militarily significant; when internal conflict and / or innocent civilians are all that stand in their way. Hopefully this time the presence of western peacekeepers and Malaysian border guards will ensure all the Indonesian hate brigades can achieve is a demonstration of their own malevolence. Maybe even their deployment will mean Indonesia has fewer troops to commit alleged human rights violations in Papua; may they soon gain their apparent desire for Independence from Jakarta.
Also, in what seems like a staged attempt to somehow show the Indonesian police actually know what their job is and Muslim vigilantes who beheaded Christian schoolgirls have accepted the error of their ways. In statements made by three alleged ethnic murdering militants, after massive widespread horror of what happened by the International community and with it the risk wallets might think twice about spending in Indonesia, a 5 minute confessional tape was made at police headquarters in Poso without the presence of their lawyers. One named “Hasanuddin” said “I would like to apologize to the families of the victims and I realize now what I have done is against the law”; did anyone notice the lack of recognizing what he did was wrong? While another called “Haristo” said he was a member of the “Poso Mujaheedin who was responsible for the beheadings and also the shooting of a nun”. When the Indonesian police normally only need signed confessions, the video tape clearly both shows their desire to mitigate the possible damage outside Indonesia and implies the confessions were unlawfully gained; at least the police kept to their standard operational “procedures” in one respect. And guess where the official line and video comes from? That's right, it is Brig. Gen. Anton Bachrul Alam of our Indonesian Scuba Diving story fame!
Finally, the story of Australian Barbara Higgs who with her Kiwi husband runs or is it ran a small hotel called Bulan Baru in in Lombok and stands accused on three narcotics counts including article 82 which carries the maximum death penalty for dealing in drugs (the criminal code used to convict Schapelle Corby and the so called “Bali 9”) all for alleged possession of 49.7g (about US $50 worth) of marijuana the prosecution says she bought from an unknown dealer and which was allegedly tipped off to the police by the "local community". The story seems to have changed from the original 3 months ago when Barbara was arrested when her husband said it was a mistake, and then shortly after some people suggested that the drugs were supplied to her by an Indonesian friend who shopped Barbara in return for immunity after President Yudhoyono ordered a crackdown on narcotics, which obviously was really to get some foreigners given the drug dealer was given immunity. After all, are we to believe Barbara, knowing the way things work in Indonesia after living there for 5 years would buy drugs from an unknown dealer given the prominence of convictions recently? Or that members of the local community would either finger her or indeed know where she kept her stash?
The worrying possibility exists of course that the initial report that Barbara was innocent is true, and the Indonesian police spiked her urine sample (as evidence exists to show they spiked convicted Michelle Leslie’s blood sample) and actually planted the drugs themselves (as they are reportedly prone to increasingly doing recently by one foreign consul). It is a nightmare scenario, the prospect that Barbara did nothing more than upset local policemen by refusing to have money extorted from herself in the past; she has, according to some, a strong personality and does not put up with such nonsense. Then when arrests were expected by Jakarta to show the police were doing more than eating their lunch at the police station, officers decided to get the woman who had insulted them by not parting with her cash in the past. It is possible the police went to a known Indonesian drug pusher to extract a false statement about supplying poor Barbara and then went to her home to planting drugs on her property. Finally arresting and telling Barbara she had better play ball with the trial to get the lightest sentence possible and avoid the death penalty. Too far fetched a conspiracy “theory”? Well maybe, except all the elements are there and known to go on to show it is possible. After all, surely, Barbara would be at least able to help the police find the dealer; narcotics dealers keep to their patch or risk death at the hands of others. So why is no Indonesian dealer on trial? Also why is Barbara being prosecuted for dealing herself for such a small amount of marijuana? There seems to have been absolutely no mention she supplied anyone else. The whole thing smacks of set-up to one degree or another with the likelihood another human life, western of course, is going to be unfairly and unlawfully afflicted by the mafia police and colluding prosecutors and judiciary of Indonesia.
We say Indonesia is an endemically nasty whole of a country which foreigners and their wallets are best advised to avoid.