Another Anti-Malaysia sweep on Sunday


After all the summoning of the Indonesian Ambassador in Malaysia, after the mysterious appeal to former Vie President Try Sutrisno of the Eminent Persons Group and a rap on the knuckles by President SBY, some hotheads in Jakarta are still conducting sweeping operations against Malaysians in Jakarta (see story below).

The Sweep I - now the sequel
The Sweep I - now the sequel

Like before, the real cause of the sweeping operations is frustration at the Indonesian government for perceived failure to act against Malaysian infringement in human rights, culture and tradition.

This is all very weird. You have to wonder what goes on in the minds of SBY and the Indonesian police. Not cracking down on sharpened bamboo-wielding demonstrators can send, at best, only the message that the government does not have the political will to enforce the law to ensure the safety of its guests. At worst it allows people to speculate that the government may be using these demonstrations cynically to pressure Malaysia toward some sinister end.

How can Malaysia and Indonesia end this constant brouhaha?

The suggestion that comes to mind is to increase understanding among Malaysians and Indonesians about each other, what are each’s hot buttons, why and what can be done about it.

Official diplomatic channels are too stiff and formal. Political action is also a long shot, given the character and caliber of Malaysia’s  and Indonesia’s political leaders.

One solution that comes to Unspun‘s mind is for both countries to start a dialogue with its bloggers. And why not? Bloggers do not really represent anyone else but themselves so they have no compunction to fly the flag, they also come from all over the political spectrum, and they are used to the give-and-take that the openess of the Net requires from all of its participants.

Why not start off by inviting a group of varied Malaysian bloggers to Indonesia. Pesta Blogger on October 24 (disclosure: Unspun is part of Maverick that’s the main organizer behind Pesta Blogger. Have them meet a group of similarly varied Indonesian bloggers. Let them talk and then share their discussion with the others at Pesta Blogger that would likely be broadcast on TV and picked up by the other media.

Wouldn’t that be a great start to cooling down overheated Indonesia-Malaysia relations? Unspun just had a chat with a prominent malaysian blogger who is eager to come to Pesta Blogger, if nothing else, to see for himself what lies beneath the anti-Malaysia sentiment here. With any luck an airline that we are working with for Pesta Blogger will bring him here.

He too, agrees that it would be a good idea to get a bunch of bloggers form Malaysia here so that they can meet and talk with Indonesian bloggers and others first hand.

The next step is to arrange a reciprocal visit of Indonesian bloggers to Malaysia. Unspun would seize on this opportunity if he were a large Malaysian business operating in Indonesia, a large Indonesian business operating in Malaysia of if he heads the Foreign or Tourism Ministries of either countries. Alas, Unspun has no such lofty positions and, since Pesta Blogger is  not-for-profit event we have to rely on sponsors to make such events happen. So any takers out there?

There is one more thing about the story below: The last three paragraphs quote Khairy Jamaluddin, shortened to KJ by fiends and foes who are legion. KJ is UMNO Youth head but he’s known to be no better than the hotheads manning the barricades with sharpened bamboo poles.

One of KJ’s traits is to overstate things and issue empty threats, so if there’s any Indonesians reading those three paragraph then give KJ the treatment he deserves: studied neglect. It’s a lot of sound and fury signifying nothing but a politician trying to get in from the cold in Malaysian politics.

This from The Jakarta Globe today:

Indonesia’s Anti-Malaysia Sentiment Still Boiling

Despite calls from President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono for police action against anti-Malaysia demonstrators, another rally involving bamboo stick-wielding protesters took place on Sunday.

Detik.com reported that about 50 people from the Indonesian Contract Labor Association gathered at the headquarters of the Indonesian Democratic Party of Struggle (PDI-P) in Jakarta before marching, to the chant of “destroy Malaysia,” along Jalan Diponegoro to the scene of last week’s controversial protest, where the People’s Democracy Defense set up a roadblock to search for Malaysians.

“Malaysia has mistreated Indonesia and the government just doesn’t seem to care,” Neni, one of the protesters, was quoted as saying.

Though there was some disturbance to traffic, the demonstrators, wearing red and white headbands, did not actively “sweep” for Malaysians.

Effendi Choiri, an international relations expert, said active sweeps for Malaysians could have adverse consequences.

“If you really want to do something, please go march down the street, but don’t go overboard because it will cause reciprocal results for Indonesia,” he said.

Effendi said chasing Malaysians from the country and banning its students from studying at universities here would only hurt Indonesia.

“There are millions of Indonesians living in Malaysia currently,” he said. “What would happen to them if Malaysia decided to kick them out? They would lose their jobs and the students would not be able to finish their studies.”

Effendi, however, said he understood people’s reaction to the recent string of squabbles between the two countries, given their history of disputes.

He said the underlying tensions between the countries had exploded to the surface because of the recent disputes.

“In a short time, we had to deal with the Ambalat issue, Manohara and the pendet dance. Suddenly, people were reminded of all the previous issues,” he said.

Effendi said the key to easing the tensions was more intensive people-to-people contacts.

Akhyar Rido, a 27-year-old lecturer who just finished his master’s degree at University Kebangsaan Malaysia, said his friends in the neighboring country were aware of the tensions between the two sides.

“But they managed to remain calm and they still treated me very nicely, regardless of the dispute,” he said, adding he never experienced any bad treatment while living in Malaysia.

Rido did say, however, that some Malaysians looked down on Indonesians.

He also noted the “cyberwar” between Indonesian and Malaysian bloggers.

“The Malaysian prime minister has been repeatedly asking Malaysians not to be provoked. I wish our government would do the same thing,” he added.

Khairy Jamaluddin, the head of the youth wing of the United Malays National Organization, Malaysia’s largest political party, was quoted by Malaysia-based Web site thestar.com as saying Indonesians should stop “testing the patience” of Malaysians.

“Indonesians should understand that Malaysians are also sensitive and get angry at hearing our country labeled negatively and seeing our national flag burned,” he said in a statement released on Friday.

“We realize we need to understand and learn about the sensitivities of Indonesians. I hope Indonesians will not continue testing the patience of Malaysians because it will incite similar aggressive nationalism from us.”

via Indonesia’s Anti-Malaysia Sentiment Still Boiling – The Jakarta Globe.

20 Comments Add yours

  1. delvi says:

    Setuju Pak Ong,
    we have ‘blogging for society’ as the tagline last year. I think this year apart from the ‘one spirit one nation’ tagline for this year, we also should consider ‘blogging for peace and commonsense’ for a sub-tagline considering the recent spat between Indonesia-Malaysia.

    Like

  2. The Spirit of Freedom says:

    Another campaign (more be civilized and effective) that you can see in the net …

    Sweeping Orang Malaysia ……. NO
    Sweeping Produk Malaysia …. YES

    Makin ramai dan seru aja ….. Hehehehe …

    Like

  3. malay nusantara says:

    ini adalah antara kebodohan akhir zaman yang paling ‘outstanding’ buat masa ini. dua negara yang majoriti islam bergaduh dan nak berbunuh sebab tarian berkemban yang mendedahkan aurat. Entah dimana hadis dan Quran yang menghalalkan darah dan caci maki semata-mata kerana berebutkan tarian. Last-last internet penuh dengan maki hamun antara warga online dari kedua negara menghamun satu sama lain di 10 hari terakhir bulan Ramadhan. Bagi saya semua yang lupa adat dalam internet dan mengapi-apikan permusuhan itu adalah samada kafir menyamar, yahudi menyamar atau islam munafik.

    p.s to Khairy Jamaluddin: hang duduk diam-diam tutup mulut. Toksah nak tunjuk hero. Kita tahu hang siapa dan kerja untuk negara mana.

    Like

    1. kunderemp says:

      Ah, Cik. Jadi kau mengaku telah merebut tari Pendet dari adat Hindu?
      🙂

      Cik,
      Kau salah bila mengira orang Indonesia bisa dibujuk dengan kata-kata “sesama Islam”. Buat kami, maling, koruptor, perogol, tetaplah hina walau mereka Muslim. Bagi kami, lebih buruk dari orang kafir, muslim yang merampok, mencuri dari sesama muslim. Toh, tak ada larangan bersahabat dengan non-Muslim bila mereka tak memusuhi, tak membunuhi kami.

      Tak usahlah tuding Yahudi atau kafir. Nurdin, Azahari, dan mereka yang teracuni pikirannya seperti Amrozy atau Imam Samudra, doyan sekali mereka menuding ini itu adalah kesalahan kafir, tetapi mudah sekali mereka membunuh orang walau mereka tahu bisa sesama muslim yang ikut jadi korban. Sudah muak kami pada orang-orang yang mengatasnamakan agama. Lihatlah betapa kecilnya suara partai-partai Islam pada pemilihan lalu di negeri kami.

      Cik,
      saat ini, Malaysia saya bela walau saya orang Indonesia. Bukan karena kita sama-sama Muslim. Tetapi karena saya, percaya bahwa Islam mengajari untuk bersaksi adil dalam hal apapun. Dan untuk masalah budaya ini, nCik tidak salah. Tidak salah sama sekali. Dan saya berkali-kali bilang seperti ini ke kawan-kawan saya.

      Tapi tak usah lah nCik cakap, “kita satu rumpun”, “kita sama-sama Muslim”. Percayalah, Cik. Tak akan didengar oleh kawan saya.

      Like

    2. orang malaysia cuma membawa nama nusantara karena ingin jadi bagian dari nusantara, sehingga macam2 apa yang ada di nusantara bisa diambil.tidak boleh itu.saya orang indonesia merasa bukan orang melayu..orang melayu hanya ada di sumatera,dan itu suku bangsa, bukan ras apalagi dipaksakan sebagai melayu+Islam..Ini haynya pikiran orang politik UMNO, RASIS tak berujung..Siapa menabur angin akan menuai badai..Cina India akan menggesermu 5 tahun lagi..kalo tak ada demokrasi..ingat itu..

      Like

  4. SK says:

    Bro, you still move around the town? Take care, wherever you’re.

    Like

    1. unspun says:

      Hey Bro,

      Am OK here. Just a few idiots running around with sharp bamboo sticks and blunt manners and minds. BTW am going back to KL on Tuesday. You there?

      Like

      1. bayi says:

        Unspun

        Coming to the Saya Anak Bangsa Malaysia launch on Wed?

        Like

  5. bayi says:

    An Indonesian caught for drinking by Pahang’s Islamic authorities sentenced to be caned.

    http://www.malaysiakini.com/news/112885

    Like

  6. unspun says:

    @bayi: don’t know about the wisdom of creating a “bangsa”. Sounds ersatz but that’s just me. Its probably a good idea. Where will it be held?

    Like

    1. bayi says:

      Wednesday, 6.00 pm.

      Rumah Anak Bangsa Malaysia, No.66, Lorong Setiabistari 1, Bukit Damansara.

      More details at http://harismibrahim.wordpress.com/

      I will be attending for the first time. Hope to meet up if you are there.

      Like

      1. unspun says:

        @Bayi: Aiyoh! If its tomorrow I am still in Jakarta dodging sweepers. Back only next week lah.

        Like

      2. bayi says:

        @unspun: Alamak. I thought you’ll be back today. If you are meeting up with SK, give me a tinkle if the meeting is social. I haven’t met him for some time too. I can be contacted at bayibhyap@gmail.com. Drop me a line and I will give you a number to call.

        Like

  7. sinkeh says:

    For such a seemingly innocent mistake made by Discovery to escalate to such a problem of gigantic proportions that rlations between the two countries have become an issue, there were numerous allegations of excessive hype-reporting by Indonesian media.

    And now Utusan Malaysia, the undoubted mouthpiece of UMNO, has reported said that press freedom in Indonesia could be curtailed. This was reported in Malaysian Insider:

    http://www.themalaysianinsider.com/index.php/opinion/breaking-views/38099-kebebasan-media-indonesia-mungkin-dikawal–utusan-malaysia

    Like

  8. peterchong says:

    i think the issue with indonesia is nothing, resort world sentosa together with transport operators in malaysia are bringing 100s of busload of malaysia nationals everyday to its casino in sentosa to gamble, tis is going to casue a lot os social problems for malaysia

    Like

  9. Seasons says:

    You you could make changes to the post subject title Another Anti-Malaysia sweep on Sunday Unspun to more specific for your subject you make. I liked the the writing still.

    Like

  10. cak maman says:

    tak perlulah orang malay mamakai agama sebagai tameng sebagai pembenaran yg seharusnya salah. Jadi tak perlu membawa agama dalam permasalahan kiruhnya Indonesia dengan malay …. dasar babilon …. babimalon….

    Like

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