Muslim Voices — Indonesia
0:00:06:>>ROSEMARY PENNINGTON: Welcome to Muslim Voices. I'm your host, Rosemary Pennington. Indonesia has the world's fourth-largest population. It also has the world's largest Muslim population, but that doesn't mean there aren't other religions to be found on Indonesia's islands. Christians, Buddhists, Hindus, and even people practicing animist faiths all call Indonesia home. For much of the nation's history, the religious groups found a way to coexist. Over the last several decades, however, tensions have escalated, leading some Muslim youth to buy into radicalized ideas of Islam. The tension coupled with the nation's struggle to recover from colonialism has led to violence in recent years, most visibly in the bombings in 2002 and 2005 in Bali. Djamaludin Ancok is a psychology professor at Indonesia's Gadjah Mada University. He actually interviewed several of the young jihadis involved in the Bali bombings in an effort to better understand their motivation. He says it's much more complicated than often portrayed in the media. I had the chance to speak with him about that work as well as where things stand in Indonesia today.
0:01:16:>>DJAMALUDIN ANCOK: We studied the motivations behind that actions. At the same time, decision-making process, how they make decision. Finally, they do something like that. That is the one we tried to find the reason for that. The motivation is, at least in our discussions, is to motivation first is the perception of injustice. The second, I see the perception of the purity of the religion. That's more emphasized in that study. So what they're going to do is they want to create Islamic State where every rule and regulation is depend on the group, on the God.
0:01:58:>>ROSEMARY PENNINGTON: How is this different from the motivations of other jihadis who aren't specifically in Indonesia but people who are carrying out similar attacks in, you know, Pakistan or other places?
0:02:08:>>DJAMALUDIN ANCOK: I think this group is, there are some resemblance with that but in Indonesia, the target is mostly westerners, people from Australia, United States, even the target of the bomb is like what they'll pick someone, J.W. Marriott Hotels and then the Foreign Embassy and then the - another one is the Ritz-Carlton Hotel.
0:02:34:>>ROSEMARY PENNINGTON: Are movements like the one that led to the Bali bombing, are they on the rise in Indonesia?
0:02:38:>>DJAMALUDIN ANCOK: There is a lot of things that develop Indonesia. One is up to the Bali bomb. Then people start to think that this kind of activity is not good for the countries. The tourism went down at times and then the investor from the other country want to create the companies and factories start to say this is not a good sign for you to develop your business there. So that hurt the country. So people start to think about how to put this away and not in our country anymore? Now, more and more people in Indonesia start to think about the multi-culture approach but diversity and even we built the school, for example, in Gadjah Mada but interreligious departments, you study many different languages - many different religion with very different teachings, Muslim, Christian in the same place and a student also mixed here from different religion.
0:03:46:>>ROSEMARY PENNINGTON: Now, you mentioned that one of the motivations for the Bali bombers was injustice. Could you elaborate a little more on that?
0:03:53:>>DJAMALUDIN ANCOK: Injustice, not on the terms of resources allocation but also sometimes, your relationship. You do not - you double standard sometime if this kind of situation, in the case of Islamic country, you hate it very much but some other countries do the same thing, you just silent, that is they call it. There's something, kind of injustice as well.
0:04:17:>>ROSEMARY PENNINGTON: How much tension is there among religious groups in Indonesia? I think that when Indonesia makes the news, it's often because of some sort of turmoil that's happening in the country. Is there as much tension between the different religions as I think that westerners see?
0:04:31:>>DJAMALUDIN ANCOK: Yeah, that's - I think they have been blown up between they say there is a kind of war, religious war between Christian and Muslim. But if you see the reality, it's not about that, somebody used that. Somebody used that for the purpose to get the people to side with you, use the excuse of religion, it's very easy. But there is an example that in certain areas, we call it Central Borneo, as we call it Kalimantan. At the very beginning, there's a conflict between two groups. One is Madurese and another one is the Native peoples. The Madurese accepts Muslim, the Native people is Animists or Christian, and then there's coalitions. They say this war between Islam and Christians. But under that, there is as a problem among the same, you are Muslim but one is the Native-born, the other one is from outside. You're the same Muslim. It still creates a problem. That means it's not religion base of conflict but it's because this is about the, you are from that group or you are the other group, not about the religion at all.
0:05:46:>>ROSEMARY PENNINGTON: This is more about the general state of being a human being than about the faith you worship.
0:05:51:>>DJAMALUDIN ANCOK: Islam is about peace, not about violence. Islam means safe, Islam means safe. You cannot interpret things like that because this extremist group always read one verses, ignore the other verses stating that you've got to live peacefully with the rest of the peoples. Because when the first constitution built by Muhammad, Madina Constitution, is about the equality among the people of different religion, you got to live together. You are Jews, you are Christian, you can live together. We have the same right. That is the first constitution of Madina. That is being ignored by some of these extremists.
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0:06:40:>>ROSEMARY PENNINGTON: This has been Muslim Voices, a production of the voices and visions project in partnership with WFIU public media from Indiana University. Support comes from the Social Science Research Council, music was provided by Animus. You can find Muslim voices on Twitter and Facebook or subscribe to our podcast in iTunes. There's also a blog, muslimvoices.org
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