The deed no self respecting FPI preman would do

Isn’t it so comforting to see justice being administered so swiftly and decisively in Indonesia. Justice, which moves so slowly and timidly when FPI guys are on the giving end, apparently speeds up when the violence goes another way.

Unspun is not so much perplexed by the seemingly uneven-handedness of the law in Indonesia, which is not an unusual thing, but the reputation of the poor FPI victims. Those of you who know anything about the FPI guys will know that they are real tough guys who would want to make Al Capone look like a sissy.

Tough guys, as we know from countless gangster movies, always settle their scores their way. A butterfly knife, a pistol shot, a golok, a big stick are the usual method of getting back at anyone who offends them or attacks them. So what sort of a tough guy is this who runs to the police and the courts for protection and restitution?

Will other gangsters respect him from now on? Or will they laugh at him, like a boy who wets his pants at the sight of his own shadow. Will other FPI members, if they actually have a brain, be able to look at him straight in the eyes and prevent themselves from giggling?

These are the questions that matter where gangsters are concerned, not how justice is or is not dispensed by the police and courts. So get with the program.

Two Men Convicted For Attacking FPI Member

The Semarang district court on Tuesday declared two men guilty for abusing a member of a hard-line Islamic group.

Koes Setiawan Danang Marwardi, locally known as Iwan Walet, was sentenced to 15 months in jail, while his cohort, Mardi Sugeng, also known as Gembor, received one year in prison.

Presiding Judge Boedi Soseanto said that both men were proven convincingly guilty for attacking Dwi Pamuji, a member of the extremist group the Islamic Defenders Front (FPI), this past May.

“Both defendants violated Article 170 of the Criminal Code on abuse according to the indictment,” Boedi read during the ruling on Tuesday, as quoted by Antara news agency.

Iwan Walet, a recidivist, apologized earlier to the victim and promised the judge that he would not repeat his mistake.

Though the sentence was three months shorter than what Bima Suprayoga, the prosecutor, demanded, both he and the convicts accepted the ruling.

During the previous session of court, Iwan admitted to beating the victim with a 100-cm metal pole, while Gembor confessed that he kicked and beat Dwi with a brick.

After the ruling was read, some FPI members shouted at the judge and asked him to release the convicts so that they could take revenge. Iwan then stared at the FPI supporters and challenged them — he shouted “One guts!” and his supporters answered him with “Ora Wedi,” Javanese for “Not Afraid.”

After the case, FPI members tried to attack Iwan’s supporters, but police officers prevented them doing so and escorted them out of the court.

Joseph McCarthy’s witch hunts and Habib Rizieq’s FPI

Here are two different but fascinating stories. It takes place in different countries and different times, but they both tell the story about how you can fool (and intimidate) all the people some of the time but  not all the people all the time.

The first is set in the US in the 1950s, when the country was gripped by Cold War Tensions. Republican Senator Joseph McCarthy exploited the fears and uncertainties and claimed that he had a list of Communists and Soviet sympathizers in the US Government and society.

Thereafter, using Senate Hearings as his bully pulpit he proceeded to launch a witch hunt against the putative Communists. Many innocent lives were affected. Careers were destroyed and some of his victims took their own lives.

For a moment he seemed unassailable. If you spoke out against then that meant you were a Communist or a sympathizer. There were some dissenting voices but by and large most people were afraid to provoke the ire of McCarthy because of his thuggish and intimidating tactics.

Then one fine day, the mirror cracked. McCarthy was trying to implicate a young man who belonged to the law firm of US Army legal counsel Joseph Welch in senate hearing that was broadcast live on TV. Welch stood up to McCarthy in his now famous “You Have no Decency” response (see YouTube video below) and it was over. From there McCarthy was exposed for the charlatan he was and stripped bare. People realized that the King had no clothes and McCarty went on a downward spiral. The Senate censured him and he died 10 years later, supposedly of a heart attack but widely suspected of dying from alcoholism.

The second story is set in present day Indonesia, which is in the grip of indecision and political intrigue between the various political parties and government institutions . Habib Riziq exploited this situation to build his base of support  in Jakarta through the FPI and is now trying to extend his influence in the rest of this country.

His tactics, like, Mccarthy’s are similar. Thuggism that intimidates dissenting voices. The FPI has been threatening people and even the police with impunity. Even though there are dissenting voices, people are generally afraid of confronting him or the FPI. They not only destroy lives but also property.

Now comes  the fine day yesterday in which hundreds of people from the Dayak community in Kalimantan stood up to Habib and the FPI by banning him from landing in Palankaraya airport and rejecting the FPI’s presence in their backyard. Is this Indonesia’s “You have no decency” moment?

Langkah Suku Dayak Tolak FPI Bisa Jadi Contoh – Nasional – Beritasatu.com

“Ini momentum bagi masyarakat lain, bisa jadi contoh untuk jangan diam saja kalau melihat ada benih-benih intoleransi,” kata Bonar.

Keberanian masyarakat adat suku Dayak untuk menolak keberadaan Front Pembela Islam FPI di Provinsi Kalimantan Tengah harus dihargai dan menjadi contoh bagi masyarakat lain untuk berani menentang benih-benih intoleransi antar umat beragama.

“Keberanian masyarakat Dayak untuk menolak FPI secara terbuka itu harus kita hargai, dan seharusnya menjadi inspirasi bagi yang lain untuk berani bicara dan bertindak melawan intoleransi,” kata Wakil Ketua Setara Institute for Peace and Democracy, Bonar Tigor Naipospos, hari ini.

Ratusan masyarakat adat Dayak di Palangkaraya menolak kedatangan anggota FPI ke kota tersebut dalam rangka tablig akbar, karena khawatir keberadaan mereka akan mengganggu keharmonisan antar umat beragama di Provinsi Kalteng.Menurut Bonar, penolakan tersebut sangat wajar dan bisa dimengerti mengingat catatan aksi FPI.”FPI kan sudah ada di Kalimantan Timur, mereka sudah melakukan sweeping beberapa kali dan bahkan menganggu komunitas Ahmadiyah di Samarinda. Wajar kalau para pemuda Dayak khawatir kalau kejadian yang sama akan terulang di provinsi mereka,” kata Bonar.

Menurutnya, ada lebih banyak lagi pengikut Ahmadiyah di provinsi Kalimantan Tengah, bahkan jumlahnya adalah yang terbesar di provinsi Kalimantan.Lebih jauh Bonar menambahkan bahwa penolakan masyarakat adat Dayak terhadap keberadaan FPI tetap membutuhkan alasan yang sangat kuat agar tidak menentang hak umum untuk berserikat dan mendirikan organisasi.

Bonar juga mengatakan sebaiknya dijalin dialog antara kedua pihak dan FPI harus berjanji bahwa mereka tidak akan melakukan tindakan kekerasan dan melanggar hukum.”Jika mereka tidak mau menurut syarat tersebut, barulah bisa ditolak keberadaannya,” kata Bonar.Bonar menambahkan radikalisme adalah hal yang tidak mungkin bisa dihindarkan, namun selagi para penganut kepercayaan radikal tersebut tidak melakukan tindak kekerasan atau menyebarkan pesan kebencian maka keberadaannya masih bisa ditoleransi.

“Ini momentum bagi masyarakat lain, bisa jadi contoh untuk jangan diam saja kalau melihat ada benih-benih intoleransi,” kata Bonar.