It takes a nation to protect the nation
As Indonesians observed Sumpah Pemuda (Youth Pledge) — that unites the diverse country under one nation, one country and one language — villagers in the remote South Lampung district in Sumatra island were on a violent rampage trying to kill one another.
Some 14 people died while hundreds others fled for their lives as their homes were torched in ethnic violence involving Muslim Lampung natives of Agom and migrant Hindu Balinese of Balinuraga village between Oct. 28 and 31.
Order was restored only after a reinforcement of 2,000 police and troops from Jakarta was flown in and a peace agreement was brokered by leaders of the two communities at the prodding of the authorities last Monday.
The conflict was sparked by a trivial spat on Oct. 27 when two Muslim girls on a motorcycle were injured in a minor accident after being allegedly harassed by four Balinese youths.
It prompted a mass attack on Balinese villages by hundreds of Lampung natives.
It was not the first incident as violence had broken out before — in January — triggered by a fight over parking space between natives and Balinese migrants in the nearby village of Napal.
The ethnic clash has raised concern over weaknesses of the government's transmigration program in Lampung and the failure of national integration in this ethnically diverse nation.
Here are some preliminary findings of a post-mortem of the incident by community leaders and analysts.
First, the resettlement of migrants from the densely populated island of Bali to the underpopulated Lampung province, more than 2,000 km away, had created resentment among the natives.
The Balinese were seen as "pendatang," or aliens, who were brought in to settle new plots of agrarian land in South Lampung under the transmigration program during the Sukarno administration in the 1960s.
It was meant to ease the demographic pressure of one region by relocating people to an underpopulated region.
However, the resettlement led to resentment over the preferential treatment given to the migrants as they were located in an enclave and granted facilities, including access to education and health care, that were not generally available to locals.
Second, the wealth gap between the two communities grew wider over the years; the migrants, being more enterprising and hard-working, appeared to dominate the village economy. They were rich enough to buy up property owned by fellow migrants from Java as well as the Lampung natives.
Increasingly, the villages became polarized, with hamlets like Balinuraga, which were targeted by Muslims, looking distinctly Balinese with their own gantries, coconut leaf decoration and Hindu temples.
The economic disparity has led to social envy by the natives. Journalists who visited the villages saw a picture of contrast between the well-endowed homes of the Balinese migrants and those belonging to the Lampung natives.
Third, integration was seriously lacking, despite the two communities having lived in close proximity with each other for decades.
As the migrants lived in an enclave, they retained their customs, traditions and practices — and thus their distinct cultural identity.
Religion was another factor that set them apart from the natives. The two communities hardly mixed with each other.
Fourth, analysts blame the local government for neglecting the welfare of the natives, who were weak economically compared to the migrants. The natives had no way of channelling their grievances and tended to blame the migrants for their economic woes.
The local authorities and the police failed to prevent the clash or detect early the rising tension that had been building up since January. When the latest violence flared up, the police were ill-prepared to handle the situation and had to seek reinforcements from Jakarta.
South Lampung has now joined the list of regions under the transmigration program which have been hit by ethnic unrest.
These include Central Kalimantan, with outbreaks of violence between the indigenous, mainly Christian Dayak and the Muslims transmigrated from Madura, in East Java; and Papua, with the recurring clash between the natives and the Javanese migrants.
The South Lampung government will have to do a lot more to address the root cause of the clash, rather than rely on the uneasy truce forged through the peace deal between the communities to maintain order in the district.
The 10-point peace agreement includes a mechanism to settle disputes through consultation and a call on the Balinese migrants to be less insular and to mix more with their Muslim neighbors.
The likelihood of another clash remains because of the simmering tension that has refused to go away, and the sense of injustice among the victims as the agreement does not cover prosecution of the perpetrators and the offer of any compensation for the deaths of their relatives and the loss of their homes.
The clash is also disturbing because it happened in one of the oldest transmigration settlements.
After being relocated in South Lampung for half a century, the migrants and their descendants would have been better integrated with the natives. Instead, the Lampung villagers went on a rampage, attacking the Balinese and razing their homes.
There have been repeated calls by the locals to move the Balinese to faraway Kalimantan in Borneo as a solution. These have been rejected by the authorities as the migrants are Indonesians who have the right to settle in any part of the country.
I am not sure about the following images as to the religion of the victim, but I assume they are Hindu.
People are not being given the chance to intergrate at a sustainable rate. It doesn't matter what religion or race you are. If your subject to mass immigration, you will feel the pressure and trouble tends to follow.
Social engineering doesn't seem to be working around the globe. And the results can be seen in the barbarity of the injuries inflicted by people on their fellow human beings.
Shiv, is there really one language?
That's a word we've needed for a long time: 'Transmigration'.
The Western governments don't have an Immigration Policy and problem, they have a Transmigration Policy and problem.
They are transmigrating, for reasons best known to themselves, cultures and ethnicities from regions with vastly different mindsets and lifestyles, into non-integrating enclaves in the UK, France, Netherlands, Sweden, USA.
The next time someone asks you in a hostile way, what is your opinion on Immigration, ask them why they support Transmigration.
This will only complicate things more,
Jakarta (AsiaNews) - Fresh episodes of sectarian violence have broken out in Lampung province, on the Indonesian island of Sumatra, where last night the inhabitants of two villages clashed, one Muslim - majority in the country - and the other consisting of Javanese "migrants ". According to an initial toll dozens of houses were set on fire and public buildings damaged by the mob. The clashes, focused yesterday in Central Lampung regency, continue across the region despite the signing of a peace agreement in Kalianda that aimed to put an end sectarian hatred.
The protagonists of the latest episodes of violence villagers of Buyut Udik and Kusumadadi. The former are majority Muslim natives of Lampung, the latter consists of the descendants of Javanese "migrants". As often happens, the assault unleashed on the night was sparked by a fabricated rumour spread by "provocateurs" who have a vested interest in fueling the conflict.
According to reports, on 18 October a Buyut Udik villager allegedly stole a cow owned by a Kusumadadi farmer. In Indonesia, it often happens that a thief or a pickpocket caught stealing will be "punished" on the spot, without courts or trials, and in some cases locals take justice into their own hands, going so far as to kill the criminal.
This is what happened, and the thief was killed by a group of people on the spot. Now, after a few weeks, the criminal's family unleashed a counterattack in response to his death, which ended up with dozens of houses burnt and severe damage in the area.
However, questions remain to which police will try to find an answer: first, why did the retaliation only take place three and a half weeks after the episode. And again, is there someone who has "orchestrated" this massive attack, using the theft as an excuse to hit other targets and unleash a bloody feud. Among the issues at stake, the religious hatred between Muslims and Hindus, combined with ethnic divisions among native Lampung and "migrants" from Java.
The above article is very unusual, as it mentions something that is not very well known or acknowledged here in Indonesia there are three law systems Civil Law based on the old Dutch law, Sharia law, and Tribal Law.