Monday, January 31, 2005

Dos and Don'ts in Visiting Aceh

By Andreas Harsono

BANDA ACEH, Indonesia, Jan 31 (IPS) - If one wants to visit Aceh, probably to be involved in humanitarian work or just hang out as a ''tsunami tourist'', which is quite the trend here, there are some dos and don'ts they should consider.

Firstly, don't expect to sleep in a hotel. Do bring your own sleeping bag and mattress.

If you come in a group, do rent a house. But rentals are pretty high though. It is the rule of supply-and-demand at work, with Aceh's few houses and an insatiable demand from aid agencies, U.N. workers and journalists. Do also have a heart for about 800,000 Acehnese who lost their homes - for them it's a choice of sleeping out in the open or in relief centers.

Before the Dec. 26 tsunami hit, spawned by a huge 9.0 magnitude earthquake in Meulaboh in Aceh's western coast, Aceh was a forbidden land for foreign non-governmental organizations (NGOs). Only those with good ties with the Indonesian government were allowed it.

In the 1970s, there were less than 10 international NGOs operating having offices in the capital Banda Aceh. Now, the provincial capital seems to be tsunamied by an outpouring of international kindness.

To date after the tsunami, according to Laura Worsley Brown of the Banda Aceh Media Center, which coordinates emergency relief information between all the aid groups, there are 199 foreign NGOs and 259 media organizations working in the province.

Their arrival, obviously, has caused prices of basic commodities to skyrocket. On the scene are big news names such as Reuters, Associated Press, BBC and Kyodo as well as international relief agencies such as World Vision, International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC), United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and the United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF).

The ones operating on small budgets, both journalists and aid volunteers, are what the locals describe as the ''parachute operators'' - those that visit for a while, getting some news footage and working with the victims on a short term basis. Then, they soon leave.

The co-operation between country missions, too, has been exemplary. ''In our place, the South Korean mission fumigated all the mosquitoes and flies. It is pretty safe now for us,'' Cuban medical doctor Lazaro Orlando told IPS.

Mosquitoes and flies are, indeed, a huge concern. Mosquito repellent is a must and everyone, here seems to wear wearing surgical masks to keep out the flies from either entering their nostrils or mouth.

Disease-spreading insects aside, there is also the problem of perception of the disaster area.

While more than 95,000 Indonesians have been buried and a further 133,000 are listed as missing, presumed dead, in the province - most parts of Aceh are still green with many areas still intact.

Aceh is huge - with a large interior - but network TV news transmission has done injustice to it. It seemed that the whole province was wiped out by the tsunami. But it hasn't.

The killer waves only devastated the coastal areas from Ule Lhee, near the provincial capital, to Nias Island - about an hour's flight time from Banda Aceh.

The colossal damage can be explained in the following terms. Aceh's coastal areas, like most human habitats worldwide, are mostly urban centers with bustling commercial areas and trading outposts.

When the killer waves struck, the entire physical infrastructure along the coastlines collapsed like a pack of cards. The destruction was just phenomenal.
Witnesses said the waves went inland as far as five kilometers. ''It was as tall as the sky,'' said Abdul Hanan, an orphaned boy, who lived in Lamno, near Banda Aceh.

Artine Utomo of TPI, a television station in Jakarta, correctly concluded that the tsunami victims are mostly middle and upper class people. ''They had solid houses made of bricks, owned shopping areas and ran solid businesses. Now all that is gone,'' added Utomo.

Simpang Lima is an intersection in downtown Banda Aceh, once a place where teenagers donned their Sunday best or men sipped their black coffee in a famous shop located in a row of shops between the Baiturrahman mosque and the Catholic cathedral. Sadly, it is a ghost town today.

Some Acehnese believe spirits of the dead are haunting the tsunami-hit areas. ''I pulled a corpse by the head. I pulled it too hard. The body became headless,'' said Adi Suryana, a volunteer of the Aswaja Foundation - a local relief agency. ''So I scrambled to collect his teeth, his ears, his other body parts: collecting them and putting them immediately into the body bag. I don't want to be haunted.''

Motorists and motorcyclists are now avoiding major streets in the capital where thousands of dead bodies lay scattered for more than a week.

''In the first four days, people were on their own, looking for their lost relatives. We did not care yet about the dead bodies. Only on the seventh day, we began to clean up the streets,'' said Zurnalis, Suryana's colleague.

Residents call people like Suryana the ''Burma Teams''. ''Burma'' is an acronym for ''pemburu mayat'' -- which in Indonesian means ''the corpse hunters''.

''I would like to say that the real 'Burmas' are the Indonesian marines and the Malaysian soldiers,'' said Suryana, adding that these two groups retrieved most of the bodies.

Wednesday, January 26, 2005

Demonstrasi Acheh

Hari ini sekitar 200 orang Acheh demonstrasi depan kantor PBB dan kedutaan Amerika di Jakarta. Mereka minta agar pasukan dan organisasi internasional tetap tinggal di sana. Mereka bilang pemerintah Indonesia kekurangan alat bahkan tidak becus membantu derita orang Acheh.

Mereka sering teriak, "Hidup bangsa Acheh." Demonstrasi tertib. Ya ada kemacetan lalu lintas. Mereka pakai tali untuk mengatur barisan. Sering melagukan Salawat Badar dalam bahasa Acheh.

Spanduk-spanduknya berbunyi antara lain:

- Persoalan Acheh adalah persoalan politik, penyelesaiannya harus lewat jalan politik

- PBB harus membantu rakyat Acheh mewujudkan hak penentuan nasib sendiri

- Prang no, politics yes

- US Army - My Family - No Out From Aceh - We Love the Peace

- Asing Keluar, Koruptor Datang

Aku wawancara beberapa pemimpin Sentral Informasi Referendum Acheh (SIRA) dalam demonstrasi ini. Ada yang namanya Faisal, ada juga Fauzia Zakaria dari Putroe Acheh untuk Keadilan, Razidin Marhaban Ahmad, Islamudin Ismail, Ayi Sarjev dan Nasruddin Abubakar. Pidato-pidato Razidin membakar sekali. Ia gundul, berpakaian hitam, seorang artis teater, sekolah di Bandung. Fauzia juga menarik karena ia tampaknya salah satu komandan lapangan. Tak banyak media Palmerah yang meliput. Aku ingin tahu apakah besok demontrasi ini diberitakan?

Monday, January 24, 2005

Black and White

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Mohamad Iqbal took this picture when I was feeling blue. I read more books and do more researches for my book "From Sabang to Merauke: Debunking the Myth of Indonesian Nationalism." I realize that many things go wrong with Indonesia since Day One. Many historical facts were twisted to accommodate those in power.

Sunday, January 23, 2005

Goodbye World, We Can Do It Alone - Indonesia's Kalla

Analysis By Andreas Harsono

JAKARTA, Jan 23 (IPS) - The world has come together to aid
survivors of the Indian Ocean tsunami, and by large it has been
welcomed in the tsunami-hit countries in South and South-east
Asia. Yet in Indonesia's Aceh province, the welcome is proving
awkward and signs are emerging that there is paranoia about the
presence of foreigners on Indonesian soil.

Early this month some Indonesian legislators, especially members
of the Muslim-based Prosperous and Justice Party (PKS) and the
Golkar Party, which dominates the parliament, raised the issue of
foreign troops being a ''threat to Indonesia's sovereignty'' in
Aceh in northern Sumatra - which has been the hardest hit in the
Dec. 26 tsunami.

The death toll in Aceh and northern Sumatra stands at more than
166,000 of the over 220,000 deaths reported so far. The number of
homeless in Aceh is estimated at 800,000.

Hidayat Nur Wahid, a PKS member and currently the speaker of the
People's Consultative Assembly, said that the arrival of U.S.,
Australian as well as other foreign troops to help the tsunami
victims should be controlled.

''They should go out within a month,'' said Hidayat, adding that
his party is worried some foreign soldiers as well as the
international aid workers might help ''Christianise'' the
predominantly Muslim Acehnese.

Such concerns were soon brought up in a cabinet meeting led by
President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono. Presidential spokesman
Alifian Mallarangeng declined to reveal who brought up this issue
in the meeting but the cabinet agreed to set the withdrawal
deadline in three months time.

Vice President Jusuf Kalla, who attended the meeting, later told
the media that ''foreigners should get out of Aceh as soon as

''Three months are enough. The sooner (they leave), the better,''
he added.

Indonesians, not foreign troops, according to Kalla, should take
charge of caring for those who lost their homes to the tsunami.
When asked about long-term relief efforts, he said: ''We don't
need foreign troops.''

Up to now, the international relief efforts in Aceh have gone on
smoothly with some 1,700 foreign troops having joined hands with
2,500 foreign aid workers and volunteers.

But a combination of nationalism, xenophobia and the inability of
Indonesia to deal with Aceh's violent past, may work against the
huge international relief effort at the expense of 800,000
homeless Acehnese.

Aceh has been almost entirely closed to any international presence due to military operations there against the Free Acheh Movement - known by its Indonesian acronym as GAM -- which has been fighting for independence since 1976. More than 10,000 people, mostly civilians, have been killed since then.

The government put the province under martial law on May 19, 2003
before reducing this to a state of civil emergency one year

Ironically, Hidayat and Kalla's statements have found resonance
in many Indonesian circles that are opposed to the United States.

For one, U.S. forces aren't anybody's pin-up heroes after the bad
publicity they received from the Abu Gharib prison atrocities in
Iraq. Indonesian newspapers have carried the prison scandal
pictures in full and that has only fuelled resentment against
them. Many Indonesian Muslims see the U.S. troops as staunchly

Nonetheless, many have termed Kalla's statement as short-sighted
and are concerned about Indonesia's actual capacity to cope with
post-disaster management if it had to do it all by itself.

The vice-president, an advocate for the implementation of Islamic
law in Indonesia, is also the chairman of Indonesia's disaster
coordinating body.

Nono Anwar Makarim of the Jakarta-based Aksara think tank called
Kalla's statement as one bordering on ''xenophobia''. He made the
reference in a column for the Kompas daily newspaper.

Makarim also castigated both Kalla and Hidayat for raising the
issue of the adoption of Acehnese children by so-called
''Christian foreigners'' - which has been played up by the
mainstream media here.

In hitting out against the two Islamic nationalists, the
columnist wrote a story on two children just to illustrate their
narrow mindedness.

The two Indonesian children were orphans and abandoned by their
communities, he said. ''Later, they were adopted by a North
American family,'' said Makarim.

''The eldest son is now studying in a top Texas college while the
daughter has just finished university and is working in a medical
company,'' he added.

In the column's punch-line, Makarim wrote: ''To see how happy
they are, I forgot to ask about their religion.''

Interestingly, another concern came from Gen. Endriartono
Sutarto, the chief of the Indonesian military, whose 40,000
soldiers practically control Aceh. Sutarto revealed the
Indonesian military only has five cargo airplanes and seven

''What can we do with these five Hercules and seven choppers? Do
you think we could bring the cargo from (Aceh's provincial
capital) Banda Aceh to Meulaboh (the worst hit area) by
bicycles?" he was quoted by Tempo magazine as saying.

Banda Aceh has the longest airstrip in the area and Meulaboh is
the on the province's western coast. It takes only 30 minutes to
reach Meulaboh by helicopter but nearly 20 hours by motor-boat.

U.S. troops are using 17 Black Hawk, six Chinhook and two Super
Puma helicopters to deliver emergency relief supplies inland.
These helicopters are backed up by four Hercules transport

From the Australian side, four Hercules transport carriers and
four helicopters are in action. In total, there are more than 50
helicopters and 20 cargo planes used by international troops in
the global relief effort.

Ironically, if the logic of the ''foreign'' and ''non-foreign''
presence is used in Aceh, many Acehnese would consider the
Javanese as the ''unwelcome guests.''

GAM rebels officially consider ''the nation of Java with the
national capital Jakarta'' as the colonial ruler of Aceh. The
separatists have even refused the Bahasa Indonesia spelling of
Aceh, insisting instead on the use of the word 'Acheh' - as the
region was known in 1873 when the 'Achehnese' sultanate fought
against the Dutch colonisers.

The confusion over the disaster management in Aceh stepped into
another sad phase when President Yudhoyono on Jan. 17, just five
days after the cabinet meeting, held another meeting and
criticised Kalla's disaster management body. He ordered the
establishment of an autonomous body to supervise the
reconstruction of the province, saying that the disputed
''deadline'' - to get foreign troops out -- was only a

That Yudhoyono went into damage control is understandable. Aceh,
could be the new president's biggest test, and the barometer by
which his entire five-year term will be judged. (END/2005)

Saturday, January 22, 2005

"Asing" di Tanah Acheh

Andreas Harsono
Kompas, Sabtu, 22 Januari 2005

SIAPA sih yang asing di tanah Aceh itu? Pertama, Anda mungkin termasuk orang yang menganggap Aceh bagian dari diri Anda, bagian dari identitas keindonesiaan Anda.

NAMUN, coba tanya kepada orang-orang Gerakan Acheh Merdeka, Sentral Informasi Referendum Acheh dan beberapa organisasi lain. Mereka menganggap orang-orang dari Pulau Jawa inilah yang orang asing. Apakah GAM dan SIRA mewakili rakyat Aceh? Ini bisa diperdebatkan, tapi suka atau tak suka Anda harus mengakui mereka sebagai "major political groups" di sana. Buat mereka, kita sama asingnya dengan orang Amerika.

Ironisnya, mereka justru menyambut kehadiran pasukan Amerika, Australia, Singapura, Jepang dan lainnya di Aceh karena pasukan-pasukan itu membantu usaha-usaha kemanusiaan di sana. Coba Anda baca pernyataan Mucksalmina, juru bicara GAM, kepada Ian Fisher dari The New York Times. Mucksalmina justru tak suka dengan kehadiran tentara Indonesia di Aceh. Hasan Tiro, walinegara Acheh, mengatakan bahwa kata Indonesia itu hanyalah "nama samaran" dari kolonialisme "bangsa Jawa" -musuh bebuyutan "bangsa Acheh" sejak abad 13. Mereka menganggap kehadiran tentara Indonesia sebagai "pasukan asing" justru tak dikehendaki karena "pasukan asing" ini melakukan penangkapan, penjajahan, pembunuhan, pemerkosaan dan sebagainya terhadap "bangsa Acheh" sejak 1945.

Kedua, apa yang Anda sebut "pasukan asing" itu datang bukan untuk melakukan kegiatan militer. Mereka datang ke sana membawa helikopter, landing craft, mendistribusikan makanan, bikin rumah sakit, memberikan obat, bersama-sama dengan orang-orang lain, asing maupun tidak, Jawa maupun Bugis, Sunda maupun Melayu, Madura, Tionghoa, Minahasa maupun China, Jepang, Irlandia, Australia, Spanyol dan sebagainya. Tujuannya, membantu korban tsunami, lagi-lagi korbannya, juga bukan hanya orang Aceh, tapi sesama manusia. Berapa sih helikopter dan pesawat Hercules yang dimiliki oleh Indonesia? Jumlahnya tak cukup sehingga bantuan dari "asing" itu sangat berguna menyelamatkan nyawa manusia.

Saya menerima beberapa surat elektronik dari sahabat-sahabat saya di Amerika Serikat maupun Sri Lanka, India dan sebagainya, antara lain dari wartawan kenamaan Bill Kovach, yang merasa tersentuh dengan penderitaan korban tsunami. Emosi Kovach tulus. Ia menonton televisi. Ia ikut sedih. Ia senang pemerintahnya mengirim helikopter, kapal, tentara ke Aceh untuk bantu-bantu. Minimal, uang pajaknya dipakai untuk kepentingan yang baik-bukan untuk membunuh orang di Irak misalnya. Kok ketulusan ini dianggap asing?

Kritik saya, isu kemanusiaan ini diubah dengan cepat, terutama oleh beberapa politikus, militer dan media Indonesia, menjadi isu nasionalisme yang sempit. Manajemen bantuan kemanusiaan ini jadi terdistorsi ketika isu kebangsaan dimasukkan. Juga isu sektarian, Islam dan Kristen, dan ia dengan cepat menyentuh urat saraf banyak orang.

Apakah bantuan dari Amerika tidak politis? Jelas sekali politis! Apakah bantuan dari Perserikatan Bangsa-Bangsa tak akan dikorupsi? Jelas sekali bakal ada korupsi-kalau ingat pelajaran PBB di Kamboja 1992-1993. Namun, bantuan dari "pemerintah asing" bernama Republik Indonesia ini juga sama politis. Bantuan dari "Indonesia" juga akan dikorupsi-kalau ingat pelajaran di Sambas, Maluku, Sanggauledo, atau bencana mana pun. Jangan karena Anda merasa sebangsa dengan Aceh, lalu Anda tidak menjadi kritis.

Apa sih yang belum politis saat ini di Aceh? Bahkan ejaan nama Aceh atau Acheh juga sudah sangat politis. Orang Indonesia, termasuk saya, memakai Aceh sedang aktivis sana memakai Acheh. Anda perhatikan pernyataan-pernyataan yang keluar dari organisasi Acheh. Mereka bukan harus satu kubu. Namun, mereka sepakat menggunakan Acheh ketimbang Aceh.

Ketiga, sebagai wartawan, saya justru merasa isu politisasi inilah yang menarik perhatian untuk saya sajikan kepada pembaca saya. Seberapa jauh bantuan-bantuan yang sifatnya politis itu, dari Indonesia maupun apa yang biasa disebut sebagai "bangsa asing" itu, akan mengubah persepsi "rakyat Acheh" terhadap Indonesia? Seberapa jauh bantuan-bantuan ini, dari bangsa-bangsa lain di Republik Indonesia ini, meninggalkan kesan yang tulus dalam diri individu-individu Acheh?

Kalau wartawan ikut tenggelam dalam semarak nasionalisme, saya khawatir, kejadian Pembantaian Santa Cruz, Dili 1991, akan terulang lagi di media Jakarta ketika isu Santa Cruz berubah dari isu hak asasi manusia dan pembantaian menjadi isu nasionalisme. Titik balik itu terjadi ketika negara-negara Barat dan Jepang dalam payung International Governmental Group on Indonesia (IGGI) menekan rezim Presiden Soeharto agar menyelidiki Dili. Soeharto menolak intervensi dan membubarkan IGGI. Manuver politik yang hebat. Saat itu ada media yang terpesona dan rasa kebangsaan diaduk- aduk. Namun, penderitaan orang Timor dan keinginan mereka merdeka luput dari media. Itulah cara saya memandang isu tsunami ini.

Saya pertama-tama seorang wartawan. Identitas lain, termasuk kewarganegaraan, saya lepaskan saat bekerja. Kewarganegaraan hanya untuk keperluan praktis pribadi atau memperkaya pemahaman soal Aceh dan Acheh. Kewarganegaraan saya tak akan saya biarkan mendikte liputan saya. ***

ANDREAS HARSONO Wartawan Inter Press Service di Jakarta, kini mengerjakan buku soal nasionalisme, pertikaian etnis dan agama di Indonesia

Komentar dari

From: wishnu8289
Sent: Tuesday, January 25, 2005 1:28 AM
Subject: [pantau-komunitas] Re: "Asing" di Tanah Acheh

Anda menyebut GAM adalah 'major political group'. Ini fakta atau opini? Tamil eelam(LTTE) pernah menguasai srilanka utara. di kota jaffna, LTTE sudah punya pemerintahan sendiri. jaksa, polisi, pengadilan. kalo GAM di kabupaten mana? atau di kampung apa? pernahkah anda mendatangi kampung ini untuk mendapatkan fakta dari tangan pertama?

From: e-mgradzie
Sent: Tuesday, January 25, 2005 1:50 AM
Subject: Re: [pantau-komunitas] Re: "Asing" di Tanah Acheh

Menambah apa yang dikemukakan Mas Andreas. Di beberapa kecamatan di kabupaten Aceh Utara, pada tahun 1999 hingga 2003 (awal), GAM merajai. Ada kadhi (KUA untuk nikahkan orang), kalau polisi GAM, juga banyak.


From: maimun beudoh
Sent: Tuesday, January 25, 2005 6:47 AM
Subject: Re: [pantau-komunitas] Re: "Asing" di Tanah Acheh

Mas Wisnu...bahkan GAM sudah pernah urusi orang nikah (sudah punya institusi semacam KUA)...

From: wishnu8289
Sent: Wednesday, January 26, 2005 2:52 AM
Subject: [pantau-komunitas] Re: "Asing" di Tanah Acheh

bisa disebutkan mereka menguasai berapa kampung atau berapa kabupaten? karena anda menyebut GAM "political group" yang "major". seperti anda cukup banyak tahu tentang GAM. saya beberapa pertanyaan lagi.

1. betulkah GAM mengintimidasi atau mengusir penduduk aceh keturunan jawa yang datang ke sana sebagai transmigran?

2. betulkah GAM akan mendirikan negara kesultanan otoriter semacam brunei, arab saudi, jordania, dan maroko dengan dasar syariat Islam?

3. betulkah GAM sudah mengutip uang dari penduduk aceh dengan alasan ini pajak "negara" aceh?


From: Andreas Harsono
Sent: Wednesday, January 26, 2005 9:36 PM
Subject: Re: [pantau-komunitas] Re: "Asing" di Tanah Acheh

Bung Wishnu,

Saya kira sebaiknya diskusi soal Acheh dan Aceh ini kita akhiri disini saja. Saya akan menjawabnya secara pribadi kalau Anda masih ingin tahu. Tak semua orang butuh informasi yang Anda butuhkan. Kalau Anda teliti, data-data itu bisa Anda baca dalam berbagai macam posting yang muncul di mailing list ini selama seminggu terakhir, baik dari arsip majalah Pantau maupun majalah Inside Indonesia.

Tapi saya jawab saja untuk kali terakhir. Saya lagi mengejar deadline majalah Ordfront. Akhir pekan ini saya juga akan ke Meulaboh, Calang dan Sabang. Pekerjaan menumpuk.

1. Soal kabupaten yang dikuasai GAM, karena saya menyebut GAM "political group" yang "major." Saya kira sederhana saja argumentasinya. Pemerintah Indonesia pun mengakui GAM sebagai lawan tanding mereka dalam negosiasi di Helsinski minggu depan. Kalau bukan kelompok penting yang besar, saya kira, pemerintah tak perlu berunding dengan GAM. Berapa kabupaten? Anda bisa tanya detail pada Acheh Sumatra National Liberation Front di Stockholm. Mereka punya struktur pemerintahan sipil dan militer di 12 wilayah Aceh. Tiap wilayah ada gubernur dan panglima. Mungkin Anda tahu, dari 12 panglima daerah itu, ditunjuk satu panglima tertinggi. Namanya, Muzakkir Manaf.

2. Betulkah GAM mengintimidasi atau mengusir penduduk Aceh keturunan Jawa yang datang ke sana sebagai transmigran?

Saya kira benar. Saya pribadi tidak setuju dengan kebijakan ini. Tapi menurut beberapa sumber, juga bisa Anda baca dalam arsip mailing list ini, ada sekitar 100,000 orang Aceh keturunan Jawa, bukan hanya transmigran tapi yang sudah tiga atau empat generasi tinggal di Aceh, diusir dari tanah itu. Kisahnya menyedihkan.

3. Betulkah GAM akan mendirikan negara kesultanan otoriter semacam Brunei, Arab Saudi, Jordania, dan Maroko dengan dasar syariat Islam?

Anda bisa baca dalam macam-macam situs web GAM. Intinya, Hasan Tiro ingin kesultanan Acheh diteruskan lagi. Ia akan jadi walinegara sambil menunggu masa transisi, mau terus sebagai kesultanan, atau jadi republik. Prioritas mereka sekarang adalah bebas dulu dari Republik Indonesia. Hasan Tiro berpendapat Kesultanan Acheh tidak pernah diserahkan ke Belanda sehingga penyerahan kedaulatan 1949 dari Kerajaan Belanda ke Republik Indonesia Serikat juga tidak sah. Anda bisa baca dalam deklarasi Desember 1976 karya Hasan Tiro.

4. Betulkah GAM sudah mengutip uang dari penduduk Aceh dengan alasan ini pajak "negara" Aceh?

Benar. Ini mudah dibaca dalam banyak sekali berita. Jangan kan orang biasa, Abdullah Puteh pun membayar GAM sebagai "pajak." Saya wawancara ratusan orang Acheh dan pungutan ini memang diberlakukan.

Saya kira sekian dulu. Silahkan memakai Google untuk tahu lebih banyak. Anda juga baca deh laporan-laporan Pantau soal Aceh karya Chik Rini, Alfian Hamzah, AE Priyono maupun saya. Terima kasih.

Sent: Tuesday, February 22, 2005 7:23 AM
Subject: fokus kompas

rupayanya anda antek AS ya!

Thursday, January 20, 2005

My working desk

A visitor took my photo in my working desk, facing the southern part of Jakarta. I usually typed with my laptop. I am using a small Sony tape recorder when interviewing sources. 

This is a tiny living room where my friends usually chatted with me. It has a tiny dining room with a Japanese-styled table with four chairs. 

See that blue sofa? It is also a place where some of them liked to take a nap or to sleep when staying over. One of my regular visitors was Agus Sopian, an editor from Bandung, West Java, who worked with me at the Pantau Foundation. 

I also have two wooden craft. I bought the two nagas from a shop near Aung San Suu Kyi's house in Rangoon. I interviewed her in 1997. It was quite an effort to bring them back to Jakarta. 

The Planet Hollywood T-shirt? 

I got it from a second-hand store in Jakarta. I am quite familiar with buying second-hand goods. It is an effort to reduce consumerism. 

The black pajama-like jacket? 

I bought it from a Badui man from an isolated village in western Java. They refuse to get in touch with the so-called modern world. They weaved their own clothes. They walked from their village to this metropolitan, selling jackets --black and blue-- and forest honey.

Tuesday, January 11, 2005

Narrow Minded Nationalism in Aceh Aid

By Andreas Harsono 
Inter Press Service

JAKARTA, Jan 11 (IPS) - It began quite mysteriously through mobile phone text messages just days after the Dec. 26 undersea quake and resultant killer waves flattened the province of Aceh in northern Sumatra, killing over 100,000 people. The messages were short and clear. They warned Indonesian Muslims that Christians were adopting Acehnese orphans, presumably to be taken out of Aceh and then converted to Christianity. 

 In the capital Banda Aceh, activists of the Muslim-based Prosperous and Justice Party later put up posters in public spaces with this warning: ''Don't let Acehnese orphans be taken away by Christians and their missionaries.'' 

The party also printed their telephone numbers, encouraging the public to hand over orphans to Muslim child-care centers instead. The United Nations children's agency, UNICEF, puts the number of affected children, including those who have been orphaned, injured or traumatised by the disaster - which devastated coastline communities along the Indian Ocean -- at close to 1.5 million across south and south-east Asia. 

 In the worst hit Indonesian province of Aceh alone, close to the epicentre of the earthquake, some 35,000 children are estimated to have been affected. Hence, it is only natural for one to be moved by the plight of these destitute children. 

 Kristiani Herrawati, who visited Aceh with her husband, President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono, also took the initiative to show compassion and wanted to adopt a 13-year- old Acehnese boy, Muhammad Dede Nirwanda. 

 In the second week after the disaster, Indonesian Vice President Jusuf Kalla, who also heads the national disaster center, announced that he would include the Indonesian Council of Ulemas to help decide on the adoption of Acehnese orphans. 

 ''We will help the children to keep their faith. No adoption could be done without the ulemas' (Islamic clergymen's) supervision,'' he said. 

 The media of Palmerah, a Jakarta neighborhood where top newspapers and TV channels are headquartered, played up Kalla's statement. But not a single media outlet could quite explain what prompted the vice-president and Muslim activists to focus on religion when the bulk of attention was on how to get emergency aid fast to the tsunami survivors. 

In Kalla's statement, the innuendo was palpable: relief services had been motivated by religious considerations. 

Perhaps such worries had been sparked because international relief organisations -- whose workers are mostly westerners and presumably Christians -- were among the first to rush to Aceh. But it seems more a case of paranoia: there is nothing to suggest that international relief workers are keen to take away Acehnese children and neither have Indonesian churches demonstrated such altruism. 

''Just report it to me if there are churches doing this,'' said Nathan Setiabudi of the Communion of Churches in Indonesia. 

Aceh has an immense symbolic importance for Muslims who constitute 88.3 per cent of Indonesia's 201 million citizens, according to the 2000 census. It was the seat of the first Islamic kingdom in the archipelago in the 13th century, when its neighbors were under Hindu or Buddhist rulers. 

But Aceh is also the home to a secessionist movement, though not one prompted by religion. Still, with Muslims comprising 97.3 per cent of Aceh's 1.7 million citizens, the adoption issue, however imaginary, worries many Islamic activists, including Jusuf Kalla -- himself a Muslim. 

Since 1976, the Free Acheh Movement or GAM has battled the Jakarta government in a war that has claimed more than 10,000 lives. The rebels contend that the Javanese, the dominant ethnic group in Indonesia, annexed Aceh illegally when the Republic of Indonesia was founded in 1945. 

In 1979, the authoritarian Suharto regime began a military operation to crush the rebels. General Suharto did not succeed in his move until he was forced to step down from power in 1998. 

In May 2003, the post-Suharto Indonesian government again placed the province under strict military control and isolated the area in an attempt to crush the rebels. Human rights groups and victims' families have charged that Indonesian troops have singled out and killed civilians suspected of being rebel supporters. 

In a bid to pacify the rebels, Jakarta also granted Aceh partial autonomy that permits the limited implementation of Islamic law. Although the separatists are devout Muslims they have rejected autonomy saying that independence is more important to them than the rule of the land in accordance with Islam's tenets. 

Aceh is now an internationally recognised disaster area after world leaders like U.S. State Secretary Colin Powell, U.N. Secretary General Kofi Annan, World Bank President James Wolfensohn and many others visited the area to get a first-hand account of the extent of the destruction. 

Besides the foreign dignitaries, Indonesians of various shades, too, have made their way there - from Islamic militant groups to students and politicians. As of such, it is inevitable that politics now rears its ugly head in the distribution of relief aid. 

The Indonesian military or TNI controls the distribution of emergency relief in Aceh, and GAM rebels have accused them of using the disaster as a pretext to carry out more attacks on the resistance. The TNI on the other hand claims that the rebels are stealing aid, although relief agencies, which have been travelling freely outside the main towns, have not reported any problems. 

Bakhtiar Abdullah, a GAM spokesperson in their exile headquarters in Stockholm, welcomed the arrival of international relief workers, but deplored the presence of members of the ''thuggish so-called Islamic Defenders Front (FPI) and the terrorist Indonesia Mujahidin Council (MMI)." 

''The actions and words of both the FPI and MMI are against the teachings of the Holy Quran and the Hadith and contradict the tolerance and faith of Achenese Muslims,'' said Bakhtiar. 

''Neither the FPI nor the MMI has any credentials or skills in disaster relief, and their presence is clearly intended as a provocation to the people of Aceh,'' he added. 

But the TNI has welcomed both groups, saying that they came to the province to help the tsunami victims. The media of Palmerah, too, has distanced itself from reporting on the GAM. 

Meanwhile, the mainstream press is fanning suspicions that the U.S. troops helping out in the relief efforts could be providing assistance to the GAM rebels instead. During the past nine days, U.S. Navy helicopters have rushed food, water and medical supplies to areas that are likely to remain inaccessible and in desperate need for weeks. 

But President Yudhoyono is trying to put a stop to these claims. ''The presence of foreign servicemen here is apolitical; they are conducting a humanitarian operation. After some time we will take over the operation, but for now we are grateful for their presence,'' he said. 

But the president's admission, as well as his deputy's remarks, shows very well that sectarianism and narrow-minded nationalism are the hidden agendas in Aceh's relief operation.

Progress Report to the Ford Foundation

Consultancy Agreement Letter – FAP No. 1019-0022
January 2005

Book Progress

I traveled to Sulawesi in September 2004, visiting Miangas Island in the Talaud Islands as well as 10 other towns which included Manado and Makassar. I combine this book trip with a teaching assignment that I got from the Fajar newspaper group in Makassar. It took me to Makassar and met scores of reporters for four days.

During the book trip, I interviewed around 70 people, ranging from former Permesta rebel leader Ventje Sumual to fishermen in Miangas. But also in Jakarta, I did interview Minahasan leaders to complete my Sulawesi chapter.

My purpose is to get a clear picture about the kind of self-governance that most people in northern Sulawesi try to promote. I also learned about the discrimination that the Muslim minority feel in the predominantly Christian enclave of Minahasa. But the islanders of Sangihe feel the Minahasans are discriminating them. The Talauds, in return, also feel that the Sangihes discriminate the Talauds.

The trip from Manado to Miangas was pretty difficult due to transportation problems. I have to rearrange my schedule to match with the availability of motorboat going from Manado to Miangas. En route, I also visited Lirung, Melonguane, Essang, Beo, and Karatung in language islands of Talaud, as well as Tahuna, the capital of the Sangihe speech groups of island.

I spent almost two months to finish writing my Sulawesi chapter, meaning that it took me three months to do the reporting and the writing of a single chapter. It is longer than my planning of two months.

I spent quite some times to read some basic readings on Minahasa, which include three books:

- Barbara Harvey, Permesta Half a Rebellion, Modern Indonesia Project, Cornell University, Ithaca, 1976;
- David Henley, Nationalism and Regionalism in a Colonial Context: Minahasa in the Dutch East Indie, Koninklijk Instituut voor Taal-, Land- en Volkenkunde, Leiden, 1996;
- Kenneth Conboy and James Morrison, Feet to the Fire: CIA Covert Operations in Indonesia, 1957-1958, Naval Institute Press, Annapolis, 1999.

Don Emmerson of Stanford University also suggested me to use Leo Suryadinata, Evi Nurvidya Arifin, Aris Ananta, Indonesia’s Population: Ethnicity and Religion in a Changing Political Landscape (ISEAS, Singapore, 2003) to enrich my data on ethnicity and religion in Indonesia.

But I also used the reported period to write a part of my Java chapter and another part of my Chinese chapter. I wrote them partly to write a 8,000-word chapter in an anthology about conflict and media in Asia. This book is to be published by the Asian Media Information and Communication Centre (AMIC) in Singapore. I interviewed some people in Jakarta to write down these parts.

I also decided to scrap my plan to write a chapter on Riau. I think it is simpler to concentrate a chapter on an Indonesian main island only. I have already written a chapter on Aceh that is located in Sumatra. I will update this chapter but not to write another chapter on Sumatra.

I divided the Sulawesi chapter into five parts: (1) Miangas Island; (2) the history of Christianization in Minahasa; (3) Sam Ratulangie’s idea about federalism in Indonesia; (4) The Permesta/PRRI rebellion; (5) Muslim minority and public forum in Manado. I wrote 13,000 words for this chapter. I should rewrite some parts of it to rearrange the flow.

In Desember 2004, after finishing writing my Sulawesi chapter, I went to West Kalimantan, visiting Pontianak, Singkawang, Sui Pinyuh, Pemangkat, Tebas, Jawai, Sambas, Bengkayang and Anjungan, to conduct interviews on the Madurese ethnic cleansing in 1997 and 1999. I also met Chinese people who were surpressed in the anti-Chinese killing in 1967.

I interviewed more than 60 sources during the two-week trip. I used a thesis by Jamie Davidson at Washington University on West Kalimantan as my “travel guide.” I learned how the Madurese were discriminated against by the Malay and the Dayak in West Kalimantan. It climaxed in the 1997-1999 ethnic cleansing. More than 2,000 Madurese settlers were killed, mostly beheaded, and their lands were seized by the Malays. Until today, the Madurese cannot return to Sambas regency.

I also learned more about the 1967 Chinese killing orchestrated by the Indonesian army and the gang of Oevang Oeray, the first governor of Kalimantan, in the aftermath of the 1965 killing of the communists in Java.

Newspaper Articles

I also published some parts of my Minahasa chapter in two separate publications. I published my sub chapter on Miangas Island in Tempo magazine, “Miangas, Nationalism and Isolation” (December 6, 2004), and my sub chapter on Jalan Roda with the Inter Press Service, “Wheel Street’s Public Forum” at on Dec. 11, 2004.

The Tempo story is to appear as the first part of my Sulawesi chapter while the IPS one is to be the end of the chapter. I did that to get feedback and also to get a feeling about what the readers would react to this kind of travelogue.

Initially, Bruce Emonds of The Jakarta Post refused to publish my Miangas piece. He said it was too long (1,800 words). But Yuli Ismartono of Tempo English edition thought that it was okay to publish my piece uncut. Ismartono asked me to write again for Tempo.

I have not written anything on Kalimantan yet when finalizing this report. A 9.0 Richter tremblor rocked the Indian Ocean on Dec. 26, prompting me to return a little earlier to Jakarta to help discuss how the media should cover the earthquake and the tsunami that killed nearly 150,000 people in Asia and Africa.

Aceh in northern Sumatra was hit the worst in the disaster. I also wrote some articles on Aceh for the New Delhi-based Outlook magazine as well as the Colombo-based Sunday Times.


The biggest difficulty is myself, or to be precise, my own discipline. I need to work better and faster. I also tried my best to avoid speaking engagements, which have apparently become a habit among many public speakers in Jakarta.

Despite politely refusing to speak or to teach, still I fulfilled my long promise to speak in a student journalist forum in Bandar Lampung in October 2004. I also went to Colombo, Sri Lanka, in December 2004 to attend a seminar on the AMIC book. But I used this opportunity to also learn from Sri Lanka’s ethnic, religious and language violence. I talked to people in Colombo and bought some books to give me a better understanding about why electoral democracy in Sri Lanka cannot prevent recklessness among the minority Tamil.

I also refrained myself from teaching at the course on narrative reporting that Pantau organizes every semester. It was quite an effort to refrain from the teaching the course that I enjoyed so much since we began this course in 2001 with my colleague, Janet Steele, an associate professor at George Washington University.

But the next difficulty is time frame. I initially planned to spend two months on each chapter. I cannot meet this time frame. It took me three months to finish the Minahasa chapter. The field work was okay with only three weeks. But the writing was much longer. But I consider myself fortunate to be able to secure a writing grant from the Ford Foundation. So I need to work faster. Hopefully, I could finish more chapters faster.

Next Steps

My plan is now to visit the Maluku islands (the latest March 2005), Papua areas (May 2005) and Timor areas (July 2005). I will use the time in between to visit some towns in Java to finalize my Java chapter. I really do hope that I could finish writing the book in late 2005.

Re title of the book, I temporarily think about “Indonesia: Frozen Imagination” or “Indonesia: Forced Imagination.” I indeed play with the phrase “imagined communities” that Benedict Anderson had introduced on nationalism. My book is also about identities, ethnicities, religions and nationalisms.

Financial Reports

The Ford Foundation sent the first disbursement at Rp 62,492,075 on 22 October 2004. I already spent Rp 58 million during the reported period.

Jakarta, 11 January 2005

Andreas Harsono (

Monday, January 10, 2005

Literary Journalism Course VII

Kursus ini mengingatkan saya kembali pada disiplin jurnalistik yang kadangkala tenggelam dalam rutinitas kerja. Kursus ini melatih saya membangun cerita, mulai dari ide dasar sampai kerangka, sehingga saya lebih mudah menerjemahkannya dalam perencanaan produksi televisi.
Tomi Satryatomo, produser Trans TV Jakarta

Kursus ini kalau bisa ditingkatkan intensitas pelaksanaannya maka ... genre ini akan jadi salah satu jawaban meningkatkan mutu jurnalisme di Indonesia.
Juwendra Asdiansyah, wartawan Teknokra, Lampung

PADA 1973 Tom Wolfe menerbitkan buku The New Journalism. Dunia jurnalisme Amerika Serikat gempar. Sebuah gerakan muncul. Ia mengawinkan disiplin yang paling keras dalam jurnalisme dengan daya pikat karya sastra. Ibarat novel tapi faktual. Ibarat novel ia mencerahkan.

Suratkabar-suratkabar Amerika banyak memakai elemen-elemennya ketika kecepatan televisi membuat mereka tampil dengan laporan-laporan yang lebih dalam dan analitis. Kini gerakan itu diperkenalkan di Indonesia. Belajar menulis dengan dalam sekaligus memikat.

Pantau mulai memperkenalkan genre ini dalam kursus jurnalisme sastrawi pada 2001. Awalnya, 15 orang ikutan. Jumlah ini dianggap optimal untuk sebuah metode pelatihan yang berlangsung dua minggu (12 kali pertemuan) dan tiap sesi dibikin santai, semi formal dan peserta bisa berdiskusi luas.

Selanjutnya, kursus ini berlangsung tiap Januari dan Juni, dengan peserta tetap 14-18 orang. Total, Pantau telah menyelenggarakan enam kali kursus dengan total alumni 98 orang, sponsor termasuk Kedutaan Amerika Serikat di Jakarta serta Ford Foundation.

Harian Bisnis Indonesia (Jakarta), Pikiran Rakyat (Bandung), Suara Merdeka (Semarang), Riau Pos (Pekanbaru), tabloid Wanita Indonesia, Trans TV, Kelompok Kompas Gramedia, majalah Tempo, Koran Tempo, Suara Pembaruan, Sinar Harapan, Pedoman Rakyat (Makassar), adalah media yang pernah mengirimkan wartawan atau redakturnya ikut kursus ini.

Modul serta gaya ini juga dipakai oleh media lain, antara lain, tabloid Teknokra (Universitas Lampung) dan majalah Hayam Wuruk (Universitas Diponegoro, Semarang), untuk wartawan mahasiswa.


JANET STEELE Associate profesor dari George Washington University, mengajar mata kuliah narrative journalism. Steele tinggal bolak-balik Washington DC dan Jakarta, kini sedang menyelesaikan bukunya tentang majalah Tempo.

ANDREAS HARSONO Ketua Yayasan Pantau, pernah bekerja di beberapa media international, memenangi beberapa penghargaan internasional di bidang jurnalisme, pada 1999-2000 ikut kuliah penulisan narasi ketika jadi Nieman Fellow on Journalism di Universitas Harvard. Kini Harsono sedang menyelesaikan buku tentang kebangsaan Indonesia.

LINDA CHRISTANTY Bekerja di Common Ground, pernah jadi redaktur majalah Pantau, meraih penghargaan sebagai penulis muda berbakat dari Kompas pada 1989, mendapat Khatulistiwa Award untuk kumpulan cerita pendek “Kuda Terbang Mario Pinto” pada 2004. Kini Christanty sedang menulis novel tentang perburuhan di Indonesia.

Anugerah Perkasa
Mobile +62 852 28004900

Peserta adalah orang yang biasa menulis untuk media. Setidaknya sudah berpengalaman lima tahun. Kemampuan berbahasa Inggris dibutuhkan untuk membaca bahan-bahan bacaan. Peserta juga bersedia mengerjakan tugas-tugas membaca, meliput dan menulis pekerjaan rumah.

Dua minggu penuh si peserta diminta memberikan konsentrasi pada kursus. Sebaiknya peserta tak dilibatkan dalam pekerjaan sehari-hari di kantor agar mendapatkan waktu maksimal untuk kursus ini.

Peserta maksimal 18 orang agar instruktur punya perhatian memadai buat semua peserta. Pekerjaan rumah tangga tolong dibuatkan fotokopi dua kali (satu untuk peserta dan satunya untuk instruktur).

Rp 2,5 juta termasuk makan siang dan materi kursus non-buku kira-kira 200 halaman. Biaya pendaftaran transfer ke rekening Yayasan Pantau, Bank Mandiri, Cabang Kebayoran Lama, No. 128.00.0435019.2. Bukti pembayaran dikirimkan melalui fax dengan nomor: +62 21 722 1031


SESI 1, Senin 10 Januari 2005 pukul 10:00-12:00 --Pembukaan: membicarakan silabus, perkenalan, bagi tugas, dan diskusi tentang jurnalisme sastrawi, tentang prinsip-prinsip dasar dalam melakukan reportase, melontarkan pertanyaan, menilai dokumen, mengutip sumber, membedakan mana yang fakta dan mana yang fiksi, kriteria dari gerakan “literary journalism.”
Bacaan: "The New Journalism" oleh Tom Wolfe; "Literary Journalism: Breakable Rules for Literary Journalists" oleh Mark Kramer; “The Girl of the Year” oleh Tom Wolfe; “Dua Jam Bersama Hasan Tiro“ oleh Arif Zulkifli dari Tempo oleh Janet Steele, Andreas Harsono, Linda Christanty.

SESI 2,Senin 10 Januari 2005 pukul 13:00-15:00 --Diskusi lanjutan tentang definisi jurnalisme sastrawi, dari Tom Wolfe hingga Mark Kramer, dan pengaruhnya pada perkembangan suratkabar mainstream di Amerika Serikat.
Tugas untuk Rabu: Rekamlah pembicaraan dengan seorang teman, anggota keluarga, atau seorang nara sumber, dengan tujuan bahan itu bisa dijadikan sebuah narasi (monolog). Buat transkripnya, lalu disunting sehingga enak dibaca. Topiknya bisa apa saja tapi yang bisa memikat pembaca untuk membaca narasi itu. Modelnya “Sebuah Kegilaan di Simpang Kraft” oleh Chik Rini.

SESI 3, Rabu 12 Januari 2005 pukul 10:00-12:00 --Diskusi tentang “immersion reporting” berdasarkan karya Truman Capote "In Cold Blood."
Bacaan: Steele menyediakan beberapa bagian dari “In Cold Blood” dan “Wealthy Family, 3 of Family Slain” dari The New York Times pada 1959.

SESI 4, Rabu 12 Januari 2005 pukul 13:00-15:00 --Diskusi tentang bagaimana memanfaatkan narasi dalam berita hangat (breaking news) dengan contoh “Tikungan Terakhir” oleh Agus Sopiann dan “It’s an Honor” oleh Jimmy Breslin.
Bacaan: “Tikungan Terakhir” (laporan kematian wartawan Rudi Singgih) oleh Agus Sopian dan beberapa artikel suratkabar tentang pembunuhan Rudi Singgih serta “It’s an Honor” oleh Jimmy Breslin.
Tugas untuk Jumat: Tulislah sebuah narasi dengan gaya orang pertama ("saya") untuk menggambarkan sebuah adegan dengan menggunakan teknik Jurnalisme Baru. Gunakan model "The Armies of the Night" karya Norman Mailer sebagai contoh di mana Mailer memasukkan dirinya dalam laporannya. Bahan ini akan dibacakan di depan kelas. Panjang maksimal 2 halaman.

SESI 5, Jumat 14 Januari 2005 pukul 10:00-12:00--Diskusi tentang pekerjaan rumah yang dibuat berdasarkan “The Armies of the Night.”
SESI 6, Jumat 14 Januari 2005 pukul 13:00-15:00 --Lanjutan dari pekerjaan rumah serta review terhadap keseluruhan sesi selama satu minggu ini.


SESI 7, Senin 16 Januari 2005 pukul 10:00-12:00--Diskusi tentang buku “The Elements of Journalism” karya Bill Kovach dan Tom Rosenstiel serta mencari tahu di mana letak jurnalisme sastrawi dalam sembilan elemen itu. Diskusi tentang bagaimana menggunakan jurnalisme sastrawi dalam liputan suratkabar di mana kejadian utamanya masih hangat terjadi. [Andreas Harsono].

SESI 8, Senin 16 Januari 2005 pukul 13:00-15:00--Bacaan: “The Elements of Journalism” karya Bill Kovach dan Tom Rosenstiel; resensinya “Sembilan Elemen Jurnalisme” oleh Andreas Harsono. Diskusi tentang jurnalisme sastrawi: pengelolaan database, persoalan etika, pengelolaan emosi pembaca dan sebagainya.
Bacaan: "Literary Journalism: Breakable Rules for Literary Journalists" oleh Mark Kramer; "The New Journalism" oleh Tom Wolfe (bab pengantar dalam buku Wolfe berjudul The New Journalism); “Kegusaran Tom Wolfe” oleh Septiawan Santana.
Tugas untuk Rabu: Coba pikirkan bagaimana kita bisa meningkatkan minat orang membaca naskah kita? Apa yang bisa dilakukan secara pribadi? Apa yang harus dilakukan secara kelembagaan? Tuliskan dalam beberapa alinea dan nanti didiskusikan bersama.

SESI 9, Rabu 18 Januari 2005 pukul 10:00-12:00--Diskusi tentang liputan Aceh dalam gaya bertutur dengan melihat struktur karangan, membandingkan tiga karangan berbeda dengan isu yang sama.
Bacaan: “Sebuah Kegilaan di Simpang Kraft” oleh Chik Rini; “Kejarlah Daku Kau Kusekolahkan” oleh Alfian Hamzah (Rini dan Alfian adalah alumni kursus jurnalisme sastrawi angkatan II) serta “Republik Indonesia Kilometer Nol” oleh Andreas Harsono.
SESI 10, Rabu 18 Januari 2005, pukul 13.00 – 15.00--Diskusi tentang John Hersey membuat laporan “Hiroshima” yang diterbitkan majalah The New Yorker pada Agustus 1946.
Bacaan: “Hiroshima” oleh John Hersey, “Menyusuri Jejak John ‘Hiroshima’ Hersey” oleh Bimo Nugroho, dan “About Town” oleh Ben Yagoda. Satu kelompok akan dipilih untuk membaca semua bab dalam “Hiroshima” dan cerita soal laporan ini.
Tugas untuk Jumat: Membaca “The Terrorist Within” oleh Seattle Times. Diskusi akan dilakukan oleh dua kelompok. Kelompok pertama bertugas menerangkan bagian pertama dari laporan tersebut sedang kelompok kedua mendiskusikan bagian terakhir.

SESI 11, Jumat 20 Januari 2005, pukul 10:00-12:00-- Diskusi bagaimana The Seattle Times membuat laporan “The Terrrorist Within” tentang Ahmed Ressam dari al Qaeda.
Bacaan: Tiap peserta harus membaca “The Ticking Bomb” dari laporan 17 hari yang diterbitkan Seattle Times Satu kelompok akan membaca 17 bab dalam “The Terrorist Within” dan cerita soal laporan ini

SESI 12, Jumat 20 Januari 2005, pukul 13.00 – selesai. Penutupan serta tanya jawab serta penyerahan sertifikat [Linda Christanty dan Harsono].

Thursday, January 06, 2005

SIRA: PBB Harus Memediasi Konflik Acheh

Nomor: 03/DP-SIRA/B/I/2005
Hal: Paska Tsunami: PBB Harus Memediasi Konflik Politik Di Acheh
Sifat: Terbuka

Kepada Yang Mulia:
Bapak Kofi Annan, Sekretaris Jenderal PBB c/g
Bapak Kepala Perwakilan PBB untuk Indonesia
Di Jakarta

Salam Perdamaian ;
Sehubungan dengan kedatangan Tuan ke Jakarta dalam acara Konferensi Tingkat Tinggi (KTT) tentang penanggulangan bencana gempa di Acheh dan kunjungannya ke Acheh, SIRA menyampaikan selamat datang dan sangat menghargai langkah yang diambil tersebut. SIRA memberikan perhatian khusus untuk kunjungan ini. Kunjungan ini mungkin akan memberikan banyak manfaat bagi rakyat Acheh, baik yang mengalami musibah maupun yang selamat.

Untuk itu, kami dari SIRA perlu menyampaikan beberapa kondisi objektif di lapangan pasca terjadinya gempa dan tsunami. Pasca gempa dan tsunami, kondisi Acheh sangat tidak menentu, berantakan dan rusak. Roda pemerintahan RI di Acheh benar-benar lumpuh total. Bahkan dapat dikatakan, Acheh menjadi daerah tak bertuan. Aktivitas masyarakat juga berhenti. Sementara ekses gempa masih terasa di sekitar wilayah-wilayah yang dilanda musibah. Banyak mayat-mayat yang belum berhasil di evakuasi dan korban kritis yang tidak bisa diselamatkan karena lambannya (ketidakmampuan) pemerintah RI dalam menangani korban. Selain itu niat baik PBB dan negara-negara sahabat yang ingin memberikan pertolongan pada awal terjadinya gempa dan badai tsunami dihambat oleh RI, bantuan luar baru bisa masuk ke Aceh pada hari ke 5 pasca kejadian sehingga banyak korban kritis yang tidak bisa diselamatkan.

Selain itu banyak masyarakat yang selamat, kini mengungsi di tempat-tempat yang aman, untuk menghindari kemungkinan terjadinya bencana susulan. Wabah penyakit mulai menjangkit di wilayah-wilayah yang menimpa musibah, sehingga banyak dari masyarakat yang harus mengungsi keluar Acheh karena takut ketularan.

Sementara masyarakat yang masih bertahan di Acheh dan di kamp-kamp pengungsian mulai diserang berbagai penyakit seperti diare, muntah-muntah dan gatal-gatal. Masalah lain yang tak kalah pentingnya adalah masyarakat mulai kelaparan karena lambannya bantuan yang datang. Malah 5 hari pasca terjadinya gempa dan tsunami, banyak masyarakat yang kelaparan hal itu karena langkanya bahan makanan di wilayah-wilayah yang menimpa musibah. Apalagi bantuan yang diperuntukkan untuk korban gempa banyak bertumpuk di bandara dan tempat-tempat penampungan karena sulitnya jalur transportasi, dan beberapa daerah yang kena gempa masih terisolir.

Masalah lain yang timbul pasca gempa adalah tidak menentunya kondisi di setiap daerah yang kena musibah. Seperti mulai terjadinya penjarahan, perampokan terhadap harta-harta yang ditinggalkan masyarakat karena mengungsi atau menyelamatkan diri, oleh TNA menuduh TNI/Polri yang melakukannya begitu juga sebaliknya. Selain itu, pihak TNI/Polri menggunakan kesempatan gempa untuk melakukan penyerangan terhadap TNA dan meningkatnya operasi inteljen. Tindakan ini bisa memancing perang terbuka dan merupakan isyarat yang tidak positif bagi penyaluran bantuan kemanusiaan serta akan memperpanjang duka rakyat Acheh.

Merespon kondisi itu, SIRA menyampaikan beberapa hal menyangkut kondisi objektif Acheh dan harapan masyarakat Acheh pada PBB dan lembaga internasional lainnya.

1. SIRA menyampaikan terima kasih atas kepedulian PBB dalam membantu korban gempa dan tsunami di Acheh. Hal yang sama juga ditujukan kepada negara-negara dan lembaga internasional lainnya yang begitu cepat bergerak membantu dan memberikan bantuan kepada korban gempa dan tsunami di Acheh.

2. SIRA meminta kepada Perserikatan Bangsa-Bangsa (PBB) membantu rekontruksi Acheh pasca gempa dan tsunami. Bantuan PBB tidak hanya untuk korban gempa dan tsunami melainkan pasca gempa. Tanpa keterlibatan internasional, pembangunan Acheh pasca tsunami akan berantakan. Pembangunan itu perlu ditangani sendiri oleh badan-badan internasional.

3. SIRA memandang perlu keterlibatan Internasional yang lebih besar untuk terlibat dalam penyelesaian konflik Acheh. SIRA memandang, bantuan yang diberikan dan terus mengalir ke Acheh tidak akan memiliki makna apa-apa jika persoalan konflik tidak diselesaikan.

Untuk sementara bantuan itu memang bermanfaat, tapi tidak untuk waktu yang panjang. Karena yang dibutuhkan rakyat Acheh bukan hanya sekedar bantuan melainkan juga diselesaikannya konflik yang sudah menelan korban ribuan. Untuk itu momentum kunjungan Tuan sebagai Sekjend PBB ke Jakarta dan ke Acheh juga perlu digunakan untuk menggagas agenda perdamaian pasca gempa dan tsunami.

4. SIRA tetap memandang Peran PBB mutlak diperlukan untuk mendorong RI dan PNA/GAM menghentikan perang selamanya dan memberi kesempatan seluruh rakyat Acheh yang ingin menentukan masa depan dan status politik. PBB harus membuka diri untuk menfasilitasi dan memediasi keinginan rakyat Acheh untuk menentukan nasib sendiri.

5. Penyelesaian politik antara RI  PNA/GAM harus segera dimulai lagi di meja perundingan Internasional dan penghentian perang untuk tujuan kemanusiaan, pembangunan yang aman dan kebebasan jangka panjang bagi rakyat Acheh. Kalau proses perdamaian tidak dilakukan segera maka rakyat Acheh semakin bertambah menderita dan tertindas pasca bencana tsunami itu. Sebab perang, pelanggaran HAM, ketidak adilan akan terus berlanjut. Karena itu SIRA menyerukan dan mendesak dukungan dan dorongan Internasional yang serius untuk hal itu sebagaimana perhatian mereka terhadap bencana tsunami.

Banda Acheh, 6 Januari 2005
Sentral Informasi Referendum Acheh (SIRA)

Nasruddin Abubakar Faisal RD Muhammad Saleh

SIRA (Sentral Informasi Referendum Acheh) adalah sebuah lembaga perjuangan rakyat yang dibentuk oleh 104 organisasi Mahasiswa, pumuda, santri dan siswa pada tanggal 4 Februari 1999 melalui Kongres Mahasiswa dan Pemuda Acheh Serantau (KOMPAS). Pada 8 November 1999 SIRA berhasil mengumpulkan 2 juta rakyat Acheh dihalaman Mesjid Raya Baiturrahman Banda Acheh untuk melakukan aksi damai dalam memperjuangkan hak penentuan nasib sendiri secara damai dan demokratis.
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