One of my favourite newspapers from Indonesia is Media Indonesia Online,
especially its editorials. It is often hard hitting and pulls no
punches in its criticism of Indonesian social, economic and political
value systems that have led Indonesia to its current predicaments.
Monday’s editorial is titled “Three reasons why the terrorists choose
Indonesia.” The original in Bahasa Indonesia is Tiga Alasan Teroris Memilih Indonesia … This editorial has brought up a number of very important and relevant issues, in particular in relation to the Australian Anti-Terrorism (No. 2) Bill 2005 currently being debated.

Below is my translation of the editorial by Media Indonesia Online, 14th Nov 2005.

Three reasons why the terrorists choose Indonesia.

This is the title of Media Indonesia Sunday (13/11/05)
Edition’s feature news. This represents the aggregate opinion of the
intelligent analysts as to why the two key criminals, namely Dr Azahari
and Noordin M Top from Malaysia, have chosen Indonesia to conduct
their criminal activities. These are:

  1. The weakness of the Indonesians’ legal umbrella
  2. Low level of education in Indonesia
  3. The widespread poverty in Indonesia

If we follow the common logic, we are entitled to be very
emotional about the criminality of terrorism in this country. Because
the key terrorist figures have chosen Indonesia and not their own
country (Malaysia) to conduct their criminality. Indonesia has already
been entangled by so many of its own problems, it has been made to
suffer further by the criminal acts masterminded by these two Malaysian

We admit that Dr Azahari and Noordin M Top can only operate in
Indonesia unimpeded because a number of “easiness.” This “easiness”
must become the lessons for our Elites in the re-building Indonesia for
the future.

We can debate long and hard about the validity of the three causes above. Nevertheless, they are not very far off the mark.

Low levels of education and high levels of poverty – they are
fertile fields for anyone who wants to sell real or fantasy ideology.

To read on, click here.