Counter Terror with Justice


Last month, on February 18, I attended Amnesty International Indonesian Influencer Webinar. It was the first time for me to attend such thing, so I was nervous and excited at the same time. I didn’t understand at first, but it was a wonderful experience. There were 5 bloggers from Indonesia: Enda Nasution, Marisa Duma, M. Ilman Akbar, Anita Carmencita, and me. There were also some people from Online Communities division of Amnesty International: James Skinner, Ryan Visser, Jai Kotecha, Jennifer Bilec-Sullivan, Abigail O’hanlon and Mirinda Boon-Kuo.

On 2001, President Bush issues a military order on the “Detention, Treatment and Trial of Certain Non-Citizens, in the War Against Terrorism”, purporting to authorize the Pentagon to hold non US-citizens in indefinite custody without charge. Next, the first detainees are transferred to Guantanamo from Afghanistan and are held in wire mesh cages in an area known as “Camp X-Ray”. Starting on 2005, Amnesty International called for the closure of Guantanamo Bay, followed by other organizations and former presidents including Carter and Clinton. Amnesty International had also published the names of 39 people who are believed to have been held in secret CIA custody and whose current whereabouts remain unknown. So, on 2008, Amnesty International released the Counter Terror with Justice: A checklist for the next US President.

Most Indonesians supported Barack Obama. Some of them did because they believed “he can”, while the rest were just joining the euphoria because Obama lived in Indonesia when he was a kid. Amnesty International also thinks that Obama can do better things than what the former president did. Change is possible, including on certain fields like human rights.

You can read the checklist by clicking here. If you want me to shorten the .pdf file, the checklist from Amnesty includes: “Close Guantanamo and illegal detention, eradicate torture, end impunity.” Is it difficult to be achieved? Obama still has 56 days to do this. Amnesty (and I) hope you can also participate on this movement, well… if you support human rights and think that we should counter terror with justice instead of torture.  Please sign the petition, stating that, “You can counter terror with justice. We are counting on you.” Until today, 19716 people have signed the petition. I am signing it. Are you willing to do so? If it’s a nod, you can sign the petition here.

Can you do it? Let me know what you think! If you sign, or even if you don’t, tell me… :-) Just like what Pure Saturday said, “Time for a change…”

Di Udara

“Human rights in the sense of human solidarity has created a new universal and equal language going beyond racial, gender, ethnic or religious boundaries. That is why we consider it a doorway to dialogue for people of all socio-cultural groups and all ideologies.” (Munir)
I was listening to one of Efek Rumah Kaca‘s (ERK) songs when I suddenly googled one of Indonesia’s modern-day heroes, Alm. Munir Said Thalib. ERK is an indie band which is really “happening” right now. At first, I listened to their song “Cinta Melulu”, which has hilarious/parody lyrics. Since I haven’t got the chance to buy their album, I went to their MySpace page and listened to a song “Di Udara”. Some media wrote that the song was dedicated to former activist, Munir, who was murdered on 2004.
The song was so… good. Listening to it makes you imagine how strong Munir’s struggle was. My heart was shaking so hard.
The lyric was like this: “Aku sering diancam, juga teror mencekam. Kerap kudisingkirkan, sampai di mana, kapan? Ku bisa tenggelam di lautan, aku bisa diracun di udara, aku bisa terbunuh di trotoar jalan… Tapi aku tak pernah mati, tak akan berhenti. Ku bisa dibuat menderita, aku bisa dibuat tak bernyawa, dikursilistrikkan ataupun ditikam. Tapi aku tak pernah mati, tak akan berhenti…”

He was the most famous Human Rights and anti-corruption activist, Wikipedia wrote. He founded KontraS (Komisi untuk Orang Hilang dan Korban Tindak Kekerasan) and was a member of many counsels and organizations (click here for the list). He received An Honourable Mention of the 2000 UNESCO Madanjeet Singh Prize for the Promotion of Tolerance and Non-Violence (Paris, November 2000) and The Right Livelihood Award (Alternative Nobel Prizes) for Human Rights and military control by civil society promotion, Stockholm (December 2000).

I think his name must have remained as a hero for human rights in Indonesia.

He once said,

“We all need to consider the possibilities of a united world based on the sense of humanity and solidarity. Crimes committed by a nation-state or in the name of progress and development will be reduced only if we are able to recognise ourselves as part of other humans’ destiny”.