‘Jilboobs’ Raise Clerical Hackles in Indonesia

‘Jilboobs’ Raise Clerical Hackles in IndonesiaCould it be that the “jilboob,” a slangy term used by some to describe Indonesian women who pair their modest Muslim headscarfs with tight jeans and sexy blouses, could be on her way out? If the Indonesian Council of Ulema (MUI) has its way, that will be the case. The jilboob, or sometimes “jilbabe,” gets…

Southeast Asia Supplying Jihadists to Middle East?

Southeast Asia Supplying Jihadists to Middle East?Southeast Asian governments with large Muslim populations are concerned that the nascent Islamic State of Iraq and Sham, better known by its initials ISIS, or its Islamic rival the al-Nusrah Front, are recruiting young followers for battle and also raising funds throughout the region. “Basically we have had them going to Syria since late 2012,”…

Jakarta Closes Notorious Stadium Nightclub

Jakarta Closes Notorious Stadium NightclubShocked by the drug overdose death of a 22-year-old policeman, authorities Tuesday swooped down and closed a huge nightclub complex in the heart of Jakarta that had operated for 16 years with impunity despite its location not far from the Presidential Palace. “The permit has been revoked permanently so they cannot operate, forever,” Jakarta tourism…

Why Indonesians Don’t Flee Volcanos

Why Indonesians Don’t Flee VolcanosMillions of Indonesians who live near the country’s more than 130 active volcanoes are constantly having to decide whether to evacuate or not. Supporting “volcano cultures” with up-to-date evidence and strong leaders is one way to save more lives, say experts. “Communities balance the risks from the volcanoes with the benefits from living in such…

Stopping Violence Against the World’s Women

Stopping Violence Against the World’s WomenWith the world celebrating International Women’s Day on March 8, two thirds of countries globally now have laws against domestic violence, with several significant transformations in legal frameworks in Asia and the Pacific. This significant shift over the past decade has not only led 15 countries in East Asia and the Pacific to enact domestic…

Australian Gov’t bypasses Jakarta, Builds Ties with Military

Australian Gov’t bypasses Jakarta, Builds Ties with MilitaryDespite continuing rumbles between the Abbott government in Canberra and Indonesia over a variety of issues including boat people and spying, between Canberra and the Indonesian military, things have never been better. It appears there may be a quiet agreement between Australian and Indonesian defense chiefs on undocumented migrants. The Abbott government has managed to…

Hope Becames Resignation Over Indonesian Volcano Disaster

Hope Becames Resignation Over Indonesian Volcano DisasterAlthough thousands of people displaced by steadily falling ash from Indonesia’s active Mount Sinabung thought they would be able to return to their homes and resume their livelihoods, those hopes have been dashed. “I don't think they will be able to go home any time soon,” said Marthin Hutabarat, a spokesman for the Indonesian Red…

Critical Questions Over Oz’s Role in Indonesian Independence

Critical Questions Over Oz’s Role in Indonesian IndependenceAn Australian scholar has kicked off controversy in Indonesia by publishing articles in both of Jakarta’s English-language dailies asserting that Australians were complicit in several violent episodes including militarily opposing independence from the Dutch after the Japanese WWII occupation. Thomas Reuter, an ABC Future Fellow at the University of Melbourne, also alleged that Australian troops…

Indonesia’s Top Court Under Fire

Indonesia’s Top Court Under FireThe Indonesian public has lost much of its faith in the Constitutional Court, one of the country’s two highest tribunals, following the Oct. 3 arrest of former Chief Justice Akil Mochtar. There are now calls for a total replacement of all the other eight justices.  Mochtar’s arrest shocked the media and the country. That is because…

Fungus in Your Food

Fungus in Your FoodControlling aflatoxins – naturally occurring byproducts of common fungus on grains and other crops in poor, tropical countries – has become a new crusade for the world’s food scientists. One of the most significant risk factors of deadly liver cancer, controlling their existence in the world’s food supply is critical. Scientists believe the aflatoxins, which…
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