Those who know Unspun will know that he’s very critical of Malaysia and its paucity of tradition and culture. In various posts in the past Unspun‘s pointed out that the “Malay” culture that the Malaysian Government has been trying to engineer into place is ersatz and, when you scratch the surface, is a composite of the traditions and cultures betraying the origins of the Malaysia of Malaysia – predominantly Javanese, followed by a plethora of Minangkabau, Sunda, Sulawesi and other etchnic groups with their mothership in Indonesia.
In this blog Unspun‘s encouraged Malaysians and Indonesians to think critically about these issues that become the flashpoints whenever there is a kink in the relationship between Indonesia and Malaysia, usually caused by mistreatment of maids, border issues or other such issues.
But being critical is one thing. Resorting to acts of vandalism and criminality is another. Unspun thinks that Indonesian hackers have crossed a line in ganging up to hack Malaysian websites. This is not an intelligent way to convince the other side to do the right thing. All it will result in is some Malaysians getting their knickers in a twist and launch a counter attack, promopting to mind the Ghandian adage that those who indulge in mud slinging usually loose ground.
What is needed here is for Indonesians and Malaysians to get together to have a resonable conversation about what can be done about the Malaysian tendency to use what they feel is theirs by right of ancestry against the Indonesian tendency to carp about their neighbor stealing what they think is theirs. Unspun suspects that somewhere in this heated rhetoric is frustration that haslittle to do with cultural pilfering. Malaysians are frustrated witht their Government for a lack of leadership, failure to provide a vision and to address the perceived downhill slide of the nation, economically, politically, racial equality and also from a public security angle. Indonesians are frustated with their government for doing so little to capitalize on their culture which is varied and rich beyond description, and hence letting great opportunitie slip away from their hands.
So who would bridge the divide and call thing as they see them?
Indonesian Hackers Claim Web Attack on Malaysian Sites
The two countries have been embroiled in a string of spats over alleged misappropriation of cultural icons, reports of migrant worker abuse and territorial disputes.
A statement posted on a blog titled “Terselubung” says that a number of Malaysian Web sites had been hacked and defaced to “celebrate” Malaysia’s Independence Day, which was celebrated on Monday.
“Today, Aug. 31, 2009, an uncreative country, a country who likes to steal Indonesian culture, a country whose citizen is the mastermind of bombings in Indonesia, a country who has tortured many of our sisters — the migrant workers who worked there, a country who abused our national anthem, a country who harassed Indonesia on the Internet, a country that has stolen Sipadan and Ligitan islands, a country which has trespassed our water illegally, a country which received their independence from Britain, is celebrating its anniversary,” the Web site statement read.
“As good Indonesian citizens, we will celebrate their independence in our own way. We are celebrating by undertaking a mass attack on the country’s Web sites,” the statement continued.
The site then listed more than 120 Internet addresses, including domains for Malaysian education and tourism pages. But checks on a sample of the mentioned sites revealed only a few of them remained defaced, or that many had recovered from the attacks.
Read rest of story here
The segmentation between Malay and Javanese back dated when the earlier Minangkabau settlement area (then the greater Central Sumatra) was then known as Alam Melayu. The Javanese did not managed to colonised the area as they were defeated in water buffalo fight where a smaller water buffalo defeated the Javanese bigger water buffalo. Hence, after the victory, Alam Melayu was re-named Minangkabau.
So the history says, as what our Indonesians friends were found of as always just looking back rather than looking forward.
This comment was made because as a Malaysian working over here, I have always try to find justifications on the reactions of Indonesians which were unfortunately prone to be reactive to pseudo-science information available from their own mass media maybe under lined with hidden agendas.
Ah, that water-buffalo fight story. As a Minangkabau I love that story to taunt the Javanese. But Ahmad, do you really suggest this recent anti-Malaysian sentiment in Indonesia has roots from that time? I doubt it. That would also suggest that Malaysians = Malays and Indonesians = Javanese, which is incorrect and I don’t really like.
Yes, I believe the roots of origin is from there because there is an unwritten concept/mentality that Java is the central power in this achipelago, is it not ‘economically’ and ‘territorially’ that the Java Island has ‘colonised’ other parts of Indonesian Islands until today?
This is very obvious when the first president declared a ‘Ganyang Malaysia’ war in a one-sided (sepihak)declaration because of the above reason.
It is not exactly fair to stereotype all Malaysians and lump they up as one despicable lot.There are any many caring Malaysian who treat their maids well and take them in as member of the family.
Over the years we have both Indonesian and Filipino maids and we treat them as human.Our Filipino maid worked for us for almost 30 years but have to leave because of old age.She is almost 70 years old and are not allowed to work in Malaysia.We tried to get her PR status but to no avail.
I was completely appalled and angry whenever I read about abuse of maids in my country and have written a number of articles on the issue.
I have you on my blogroll about a month ago.Grateful if you could do the same.Thank you.
The mass media that provacated the public just blindly branded individual incidents as Malaysia (the state itself) being the culprit. Maybe it has to do with the percentage levels of educations over here by comparison 37% of Malaysians now do have tertiary educations. Or they are just going for short term sensation issues without having any accountability, I do not know.
This will serve only to escalate the frustration and ill-will to innocent parties and where will all this lead to? Tit for tat? Will this solve anything at all?
Such a move has taken the issue of cultural dispute out of its proper context.
I know that not every Malaysian treated the maid and driver like slaves, in fact many drivers I know have been taken to several good restaurants to have dinner or lunch togetther, some let the drivers slept in any bed room in their apartments when they work late.
Obviously only the cases of mistreatment were reported and though these were rare, they tended to sell papers and raise emotions. Good stories remain untold, for some reason.
I know my previous employer got eye specialist help for a worker who failed to wear safety googgles and hurt his eyes when a splinter hit his right eye. He was paid during his medical leave and given treatment until he fully recovered.
Yes, it is too bad that there is a lot of public lies being spread around (eg. I frequently attended seminars and figures/data quoted are always contradicting between departments and organisations). The only way is to stick to science (as datas do not lie)and the mass media should be ethical enough to select only those with proper authority to talk as not just any Tom, Dick and Harry, who just loves any cheap public exposure.
Personnaly, in a way I do like all these local media provocations, because then ignorant Malaysians can know the mentality and attitude of their neighbour (the more you talk, the more you expose your weaknesses). TQ and have pleasant dreams.
Hey Ahmad,you seem like a smart fellow in handling this issue. Good job at that. Keep it up!