woensdag 22 juli 2009

The Islamic State, a painful illusion! A hard attack against Middle East infiltration in Indonesia by Abdurrahman Wahid c.s.

World-wide the Arab countries and especially Saudi Arabia have sold oil. More and more since the 1970s and 1980s. But not only oil has spread over the whole world: Wahhabi doctrines have followed and their infiltration in Indonesian society and culture has been smooth, sometimes unclear, but since 2002 (Bali bombings) it has become more and more apparent that their grip on Indonesian Muslim society has become quite strong. Prominent Muslims leaders of Nahdlatul Ulama (Abdurrahman Wahid and Mustofa Bisri) and Muhammadiyah (Ahmad Suafii Maarif) have decided that 'it time now to fight back' (kini saatnya kita menyarang balik mereka, p. 195). This is done in an extremely well written and very informative book, Ilusi Negara Islam. Ekspansi Gerakan Islam Transnasional di Indonesia. I found the book, published in April 2009, on the internet (after a mail from Capuchin Friar Huub Boelaars, see http://www.bhinnekatunggalika.org/).
The two figures on the cover are Soekarno and Mohammed Hatta, at the declaration of Independence of Indonesia, 17 August 1945. The Indonesian State as they wanted it, is based on Pancasila doctrines, acknowledging the one and supreme Deity, but including other religions besides Islam, democracy, social justice. The idea of khilafa instead of a theocratic and autoritarian state that fights all people who do not agree with their radical 'Muslim' views and blames them as unbelievers.

The 'transnational' Muslim movements are the Wahhabi, the Muslim Brothers and Hizbu Tahrir. The origin and early developments of the three movements are sketched and emphasis is given to their transformations in modern Saudi Arabia. They are connected with the purety seeking ideas of Khawarij Muslims of early Islam and in this way they are easily blamed as heretic and as a deviation of mainstream and sound Islam.
In the period of New Order (1965-1998) they infiltrated through DDII (Muhammad Natsir's Council for Da'wa) and LIPIA (the Institute for Arab Training in Jakarta). They infiltrated in Muhammadiyah, where they could block candidates for important positions, in Islamic and State Universities, in NU mosques. Their clearest expression is the political party PKS (Partai Keadilan Sejahtera).
In December 2006 Muhammadiyah has taken a firm stand against PKS and other Wahhabi/Salafi movements by a declaration that is signed by General Chairman Din Syamsuddin. Since 2006 also the Nahdlatul Ulama have started a strong policy against 'the extremist transnational ideology and its movements.'
The strongly debates Fatwas of the MUI, Majelis Ulama Indonesia of mid-2005, where interreligious dialogue, interreligious prayers sessions, the acceptance of pluralism were defended, must be seen as a strong sign of Wahhabi infiltration in the MUI. The ban on Ahmadiyah by MUI and minister of religion must also be seen in this respect. Instead, so the book on p. 199, MUI shouold have banned Hizbut Tahrir Indonesia as non-Islamic because it does no accept Pancasila and democracy.
The MUI was erected by the Soeharto government in 1975 to control Islam. Instead MUI now is able to control government policy in religious affairs (201).
From the viewpoint of harmony in society, this clear book can only be applauded.
But the book also does not answer quite important questions: Why could this combination of Wahabi/Ihkwan become so interesting for Indonesians? Is it in all maters so bad as depicted here? Why were Muhammadiyah and NU not able to formulate a more attractive and feasible spirituality for modern Indonesians, especially for abangan people who were no longer happy with their tradition or could not be proud about it? Zainuddin MZ, AA Gym and other a-political could not prevent this turn towards a more political Islam: why? This book has been accused of a style of writing close to intelligence reports, including terminologies of infiltration, domination. It is a ploticial cry in itself but what is the positive side of this book: only a return to the wayang of the Wali Songo and to the Pancasila doctrine? That seems to be not enough.

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