Wednesday, January 13, 2010

TNI-ku Kini (bagian 3)

The TNI, Indonesian Military Force, has been under scrutiny since the '98 reformation. Change has not been easy. However, they claimed to be fully committed to the reformation agenda. I wrote, produced and narrated this piece for Kompas.com.

TNI-ku Kini (bagian 2)

The TNI, Indonesian Military Force, has been under scrutiny since the '98 reformation. Change has not been easy. However, they claimed to be fully committed to the reformation agenda. I wrote, produced and narrated this piece for Kompas.com.

TNI-ku Kini (bagian 1)

The TNI, Indonesian Military Force, has been under scrutiny since the '98 reformation. Change has not been easy. However, they claimed to be fully committed to the reformation agenda. I wrote, produced and narrated this piece for Kompas.com.

Geliat Nurani Mantan Pejihad (bagian 3)

This is a piece that I did for Kompas.com. It tells the story of 3 generations of ex-muslim radicals.

Geliat Nurani Mantan Pejihad (bagian 2)

This is a piece that I did for Kompas.com. It tells the story of 3 generations of ex-muslim radicals.

Geliat Nurani Mantan Pejihad (bagian 1)

This is a piece that I did for Kompas.com. It tells the story of 3 generations of ex-muslim radicals.

Monday, January 4, 2010

In Memoriam: Abdurrahman Wahid


In 2006, Hollywood churned another comedy by Barry Levinson. Why do I mentioned one of his film at all? Because this is another good example of life imitating art and vice versa...well, at least in the context of the late Abdurrahman Wahid. The title of the movie was 'Man of The Year'. The star was Robin Williams, playing a comedian who mistakenly became the United States President.

I will not bore you with the Hollywood formulated scenario of that movie. But I will tell you a little more about Abdurrahman Wahid. Was he a comedian? The answer is yes. Was he an ex President? Yes! Was he considered to be one of the most, if not the most influential Muslim cleric in Indonesia? Yes! Did he go through a similar predicament as Tom Dobbs, the character that was played by Robin Williams in that movie? If that question is reffering to the short period of time that Dobbs played the role as the President of the United States...well, Gus Dur only manages to stay seated on the President's chair less than half of the five year period. However, Dobbs was not a genius, whereas many people consider Gus Dur to be a great humanitarian and a brilliant thinker.

The image of Abdurrahman Wahid wearing a short pants and a shirt greeting the crowd still is a controversial image. His frank remarks about many issues in Indonesia had bewildered and shocked many people. His unpredictable political decisions had often confused his folowers. There is no grey area with Gus Dur...only total opposites. People who love him and people who don't. He may be a natural comedian, but what he speaks of is no laughing matter. He may be the leader of Nadhatul Ulama, but he is also considered to be the most outspoken pluralist in Indonesia. Believe it or not, he even has 2 birth dates. He was born 4th of Sya'ban, the eigth month in the Islamic calender, 1940. Which means he was born 7th of September 1940. However, he chose to celebrate his birthday on the 4th of August.

Some want him to be given the title of national hero. Me personally, would rather have him as a great comedian. Simply because I don't think he would have liked to become a national hero...because I think he would consider that too much of a fuss. By the way, that was the catch phrase he made popular - "Why make so much fuss?".