Sat, 16 Sep 2000

Sacred cows

The public has since long lost even the slightest confidence in the police and security apparatuses, who have the authority to investigate the recent bombings in the country. It is therefore entirely appropriate for the public to demand that the chief of the Jakarta Police, the chief of the National Police and the chief of the Indonesian Armed Forces (TNI) resign.

Acts of terrorism by bombings are instruments used to preserve certain interests, and in the current Indonesian context the interests are in the political and economic domain. People with economic privileges who are now becoming politically disadvantaged are resisting through terror.

All the components who make up this nation must begin to learn to try to win through ethical means and to accept defeat in a spirit of chivalry. As a self-respecting nation, dialog is for us the most honorable instrument to use. Terror, in whatever form, never wins because it only gives rise to a growing resistance.

Unfortunately, the police lack the courage to arrest the bombers, even though there is an unspoken belief among the public that the culprits are sitting right under their noses.

-- Media Indonesia, Jakarta