One of the most challenging aspects Muslim parents face in the West is finding suitable spouses for their children. Because of lack of social networking, this has become a serious problem.
Perhaps the only confusion that emerged in the aftermath of Suharto’s death on January 27 was the conflicting reports about how many names he had: whether he had one name, like most Javanese, or two, prefixed by ‘Muhammad’. The rest of the details about his life are clear.
There are more than 56 Muslim nation-States in the world today, yet few would register on an informed Muslim’s radar screen as being particularly significant. What determines a country’s importance relative to others? Before answering this question, let us first list those that would probably make the top grade without assigning any specific order to them: Iran, Pakistan, Turkey, Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Malaysia, Indonesia and Lebanon.
How to get 80,000 Muslims to fill up a soccer stadium? Unless there is a soccer match, a soccer stadium is hardly ever filled up. At the Gelora Bung Karno stadium, the largest stadium in Jakarta, on August 12, however, nobody was playing football when people filled up all the seats. Hizb ut-Tahrir (HT), no stranger to crowd-mobilisation, managed to gather a huge crowd: some cynics say that getting 80,000 people together in a country like Indonesia is no big deal; the realities of the land in which an event is held are more important aspects to be analysed by observers of Indonesian politics, particularly those in the Islamic movement.1
The election on December 11 of Dr Irwandi Yusuf as governor of the Indonesian province of Aceh has finally laid to rest one myth deliberately peddled by successive governments in Jakarta: that the Free Aceh Movement (GAM) is a fringe group.
That US President George W. Bush is disliked, both at home and abroad, is no secret; what is less well known is the depth of the antipathy to him. Indonesia, for instance, is presented as a moderate (read pro-US) Muslim state where people do not indulge in serious political activity and Bush is disliked less than he is in the Middle East. Yet Indonesians on most parts of the political spectrum were angered by Bush visiting their country after his participation in the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) summit in Hanoi last month.
In the last issue, we reported on the protests by expatriate workers in Dubai against their treatment there. Now ABD RAHMAN KOYA in Kuala Lumpur reports on the plight of Indonesia domestic workers in Malaysia, and the shortcomings of a new agreement between the countries.
"Academic-turned-militant", "bomb expert", "terrorist", "Bali-bomb brain": these are just some of the abusive remarks that the media in Indonesia and Malaysia have borrowed from western news agencies to libel Dr Azahari Husin, who died on November 9 after what the Indonesian police claim was a shoot-out.
For the third time since Jakarta and the fighters of Aceh signed their first ‘treaty' in May 2000, both sides have again reached a deal, hoping to pave the way to a lasting solution of the conflict in North Sumatra. This time the negotiations were conducted in the wake of the region's worst catastrophe: the tsunami of December 26 last year.
As if the recent divine fury of the tsunami that struck South-East Asia last December were not enough, the prospect of a war between that region's only two predominantly Muslim countries, Indonesia and Malaysia, came into the limelight after the deployment of warships by both countries in a disputed area of sea.
It is a worrying sign when western leaders and their sidekicks — media, NGOs and thinktanks — welcome a new government in any Muslim country...
Since the fall of Suharto Indonesia's journey to ‘democracy' has been marked by court trials involving its past rulers. Curiously, any trial in Indonesia attracts western attention to their disputed ‘credibility'...
Indonesian authorities in charge of the recently declared martial law in Aceh have announced that martial law has achieved "100 per cent" control of the territory. However, army chief general Endriartono Sutarto was quick to add that "of course we cannot say security is 100 percent guaranteed", according to the Jakarta Post (July 2).
Taking a cue from her American mentors, Indonesian president Megawati Sukarnoputri has discovered the art of talking tough towards the end of a term of office. Megawati has mostly maintained silence as the cornerstone of her presidency...
There are signs that cracks are appearing in the alliance of strange bedfellows in South East Asia. Governments are beginning to realise that they have been negligent of domestic politics; as general elections loom in countries like Malaysia and Indonesia...
One feature of the increasing assertiveness of Indonesia’s Islamic movements is the demand that the Shari’ah be implemented as a solution to its social ills. ABDAR RAHMAN KOYA discusses the implications of this issue.
Despite desperate attempts by the police to convince a sceptical public by broadcasting suspects’ confessions on television, most Indonesians still disbelieve allegations of local Muslim groups’ involvement in the Bali carnage of October 12...
When at a loss to explain anti-Western opinions and activities, American agencies routinely blame Usama bin Ladin. Since the Bali bombing on October 12, Indonesia has identified its own equivalent: the well-known alim Abu Bakar Basyir...
It seems that the US’s hopes of making Indonesia its prime ally in Southeast Asia may be dashed. President Megawati Sukarnoputri is being forced to decide which to heed, Washington’s bully-tactics or her own cabinet’s opposition to their country becoming a US stooge.
As Indonesians celebrated their independence from Holland in 1945 on August 17, western governments congratulated president Megawati Sukarnoputri.