Indonesia Prepares for New International Condemnation

Indonesia Prepares for New International CondemnationOnce again, Indonesia’s Police Mobile Brigade Unit is preparing an unknown number of firing squads to be deployed to the Nusakambangan prison island, where they are expected to shoot an as-yet undetermined number of drug offenders, including a British grandmother who was caught smuggling cocaine into Bali. Police have been keeping the number of individuals…

Indonesia’s Feared Anti-terrorism Squad Under Fire in Hunt for ISIS

Indonesia’s Feared Anti-terrorism Squad Under Fire in Hunt for ISISSiyono’s wife Suratmi probably did the best thing she could when she asked for help from Muhammadiyah, Indonesia’s second largest Islamic organization, to figure out why her husband died in the custody of the Indonesian police’s feared counter-terrorism squad Densus 88 last month. Along with her effort to seek for the truth through Muhammadiyah, she…

Jakarta Globe Says Goodnight Indonesia

Jakarta Globe Says Goodnight IndonesiaOn Tuesday, Dec. 15, one of Asia’s most ambitious experiments in English-language journalism effectively came to an end with the decision to shut down the print version of the seven-year-old Jakarta Globe.  The paper, in its final edition, cited high printing and distribution costs. In a front-page message on the paper’s last edition, the company…

Gauging the ISIS Threat in Indonesia

Gauging the ISIS Threat in IndonesiaConcern is rising in Jakarta that Indonesia could be the first Southeast Asian nation hit by an Islamic State-style attack from the 100-odd Islamic fighters who have returned from the Middle East in recent months although the fundamentalists so far are disorganized and small in number.  Roughly 160 Indonesian males, 40 females and 100 children…

Bali Writer’s Gabfest Forced to Drop 1965 Bloodletting Panels

Bali Writer’s Gabfest Forced to Drop 1965 Bloodletting PanelsBali’s prestigious international writers and artists’ festival has agreed to drop several sessions dealing with the massacre of hundreds of thousands of people in 1965 in Java and Bali after a threat by the Indonesian government that the entire festival would be shut down if they didn’t. This year is the 50th anniversary of the…

Indonesia’s Forgotten Genocide

Indonesia’s Forgotten GenocideWith each passing year, the memories of violent death dim the way that old photographs lose their color. It has now been 50 long years since that night in Jakarta on 30 September when seven Indonesian army officers including six generals were slaughtered by rebel troops, unleashing an orgy of violence across much of Java…

Half-Century Later, CIA Releases Indonesia Briefing Documents

Half-Century Later, CIA Releases Indonesia Briefing DocumentsOn September 16, the US Central Intelligence Agency released what historians and conspiracy theorists have long been waiting for – the agency’s top secret Presidential daily briefings covering the administrations of John F. Kennedy and Lyndon B. Johnson – almost the entire decade of the 1960s, the tumultuous period that included the growth of the…

Indonesia’s Next Target: Condoms

Indonesia’s Next Target: CondomsJust days after President Joko Widodo halted highly restrictive and embarrassing regulations to curb foreign journalists in Indonesia, another puzzling rule has surfaced as some lawmakers are pushing to make the public sale of contraceptives illegal as part of a proposed revision of Indonesia's Criminal Code. According to the Jakarta Globe, Article 481 of the…

Jakarta’s Slum-Dwellers Resist Attempts to Clean Rivers

Jakarta’s Slum-Dwellers Resist Attempts to Clean RiversJakarta’s governor, Basuki Tjahaja Purnama, has kicked off a firestorm with his attempts to clean up slums along the notoriously polluted Ciliwung River, with more than 2,200 National Police officers and the Indonesian military deployed in the effort to evict rock- and Molotov cocktail- throwing slum residents. The city government two months ago ordered the…

Jakarta Educators Finally Freed in Sex Abuse Case

Jakarta Educators Finally Freed in Sex Abuse CaseTwo Jakarta-based educators who were found guilty in April in a bizarre case charging them with repeatedly abusing kindergarten students sexually were freed on appeal Friday, August 14, by the Jakarta high court. A Canadian teacher, Neil Bantleman and an Indonesian teaching assistant, Ferdinand Tjiong, were sentenced to 10 years in prison and fined Rp100…
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