Sometimes I Hate Religion

Religion. It sounds good. But religion had made many conflict in many countries. Like in my country, religion made conflicts between them. For some, religion is everything for them, so they could kill other in the nnme of religion.

Some people misused religion for their interest. Some politician use religion to get votes in pbulic election. But after they have been elected, they forget people.

Sometimes I hate religion.

RI a factor in Malaysia results: Analysts

Tony Hotland ,  The Jakarta Post ,  Jakarta   |  Wed, 03/12/2008 1:34 AM  |  Headlines


The unprecedented results of Malaysia’s polls over the weekend may have been inspired by reform and democracy in Indonesia, analysts said.

Malaysia’s ruling coalition party lost its two-third majority in parliament, the first time in five decades, but on Monday party leader Abdullah Ahmad Badawi retained his premiership for a second term.

Long-term observer of Malaysian politics Des Alwi said reform in Indonesia might have stoked the rebellion against the party leader.

Abdullah has been criticized for his administration’s poor handling of the economy, corruption and racial issues.

“We went down that road first and I think the wind of reform has blown in their direction,” Des said Tuesday.

“That’s our greatest swing to Malaysia.”

The Indonesian Democratic Party of Struggle (PDIP), which has been for a long time opposed to former authoritarian Soeharto’s Golkar Party, gained votes in the 1999 general elections after Soeharto was toppled a year earlier.

A reform movement then swept the nation.

Golkar had held the majority in the House of Representatives for more than three decades.

Des was one of Indonesia’s negotiators during the confrontation with Malaysia in the early 1960s and was a friend then of Malaysian leaders.

He said many Malaysians had been tired of restrictions and the flourishing corruption in their country.

The resurgence of the opposition figure and former deputy premier Anwar Ibrahim was greeted immediately.

Anwar was convicted in 1998 on sex and graft charges, but he maintained the charges were politically motivated. The sex charge was later quashed.

Anwar led his Keadilan party to win 31 parliament seats from just one in the previous election.

“Their eyes were opened because of information coming from outside Malaysia on news wires and websites.

“They have matured,” Alwi said.

Vice President Jusuf Kalla, also Golkar chairman, said Tuesday the victory of the opposition parties was “a common part of a growing democracy, which in Malaysia was thanks to access to information”.

“Although the press is restricted in Malaysia, there are short massaging service (on cell phones) and the Internet allows wide public access to information,” he told Antara news agency.

Lawmaker Abdillah Toha of the House’s Commission I that deals with foreign affairs said the election results were “a start of a new era toward democracy”.

Also a National Mandate Party (PAN) leader, Abdillah said, “I’ve dealt with Malaysian lawmakers and they basically did not function”.

“They just did what the government said.

“Anwar Ibrahim is a strong figure and I personally think we’d have better relations if he was the prime minister.

“The results are a good lesson the Malaysian government must take seriously because their people showed they did not want to be ruled by a poorly-run administration anymore.”

Church congregation continues amid protest

Tifa Asrianti ,  The Jakarta Post ,  Bekasi   |  Mon, 03/10/2008 1:20 AM  |  Headlines


Five churches in North Bekasi held Sunday services from Permata Jijau Permai housing estate despite a rumor members of the Cooperating Bureau of Mosques and Praying Rooms (Musholla) would stage large protests against their efforts.

Police officers were seen patrolling the housing estate, where the protesters were expected, but no such gathering occurred.

The five churches included the Indonesian Bethel Church of Shalom, the Indonesian Bethel Church of Maranatha, the Indonesian Christian Protestant Church, the Indonesian Pentecostal Church and the Javanese Christian Church.

Various obstacles put up by protesters have seen church organizations in the area unable to build permanent buildings and so they operate out of makeshift shophouses.

Edward Butar-butar from the Bekasi Christian Family Forum said there were nine other churches in the Permata Hijau Permai real estate but threats seemed to be focused on five churches at the shophouses block.

The cooperating bureau organizing the protests made complaints to local authorities about the churches and their operations last year.

Tensions escalated after Dec. 16, 2007, when hundreds of people entered a church during Mass and forced the congregation to stop the service.

Following the December protests, the Javanese Christian Church moved to Taman Kebalen estate.

Four churches stayed despite further protests.

Elizabeth Suria, church secretary at the Shalom church, said her congregation had been faced with a number of incidents including garbage being dumped at their church entrance and protesters blocking congregation members from entering their building.

“So far, there has been no physical abuse, but we couldn’t perform mass,” she said.

One protester interviewed said “his people” did not want to interrupt religious activity, but wanted “legal certainty about the building’s usage”.

“They are using shophouses as houses of worship,” Yos said.

“I think it is against the regulation.”

In response to the opposition, Elizabeth said the shophouses they used as churches belonged to them, and they had a legal right to use them for whatever purpose.

Edward Butar-butar said the Christian congregations had to use shophouses for services because it was difficult to build churches there.

He said the Indonesian Christian Protestant Church and St. Clara church, a Catholic church in a neighboring real estate, had experienced problems with their land, construction funds and construction permits.

“Some people objected to the construction plan and as a result the church has never been built,” Edward told The Jakarta Post on Sunday.

Bekasi municipality council member and member of the Peace and Welfare Party (PDS) Jonni S. Batubara said construction of a Batak church in Tanggul, North Bekasi, was stopped last year after people protested against it.

Another council member and faction head of the Justice Welfare Party (PKS), Wahyu Prihantono said the problem was related to miss-communication between churchgoers and the people.

“Performing a religious activity is a human right,” Wahyu said.

“To prevent the opposition, we should strengthen the role of FKUB (Bekasi’s Interfaith Communication Forum).”

In 2006, the government issued a two-minister regulation stipulating a church permit should include at least 90 churchgoers, have support from 60 local residents, be legalized by the local authorities, and receive a recommendation from the head of the municipality’s religious office and one from the FKUB.

SBY like a brother, Ahmadinejad says

Riyadi Suparno ,  The Jakarta Post ,  Tehran   |  Wed, 03/12/2008 1:35 AM  |  Headlines


Iran has praised Indonesia for rejecting a United Nations Security Council sanction against the Mideast country and Ahmadinejad has called Yudhoyono his brother in international peace efforts.

President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono is currently in Tehran as part of a four-country visit including the Middle East and South Africa.

Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad said, “Mr Yudhoyono and I are two brothers, who will take actions to create international peace and bring benefits to our two countries”.

Ahmadinejad thanked Yudhoyono for his position during the UNSC vote.

Yudhoyono moved against the call to put further sanctions against Iran, while 14 UNSC member countries voted in favor of the resolution.

Ahmadinejad hailed Indonesia’s decision as a “very fair stance, based on the principle of law”.

“This stance, God willing, will become an inspiration to create justice at the UNSC, because currently the structure of the UNSC cannot ensure international peace,” Ahmadinejad said.

“This stance will also enhance bilateral ties between the two countries.”

Despite thanks and praise from Ahmadinejad, Indonesia stands alone at the Council, while countries including Russia and China, long supporters of Iran, supported the sanction-heavy resolution.

Yudhoyono, who is on a two-day state visit to Iran, said implementing further sanctions was inappropriate because Iran had cooperated with the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA).

Yudhoyono said the IAEA had confirmed Iran’s nuclear program was peaceful in its nature.

“Indonesia is of the opinion that the cooperation between Iran and IAEA must be continued, and this issue should not be brought to the political arena.

“Indonesia will always support nuclear development for peaceful purposes,” he said.

The two leaders discussed other international issues, especially those related to Muslim populations including Palestine, Lebanon, Iraq and Afghanistan.

“Indonesia and Iran share the same vision about finding a fair solution for those suffering nations,” Yudhoyono said.

The two leaders also witnessed the signing of several agreements and memorandums of understanding (MOU) between representatives of governments and businesses from both countries.

MOUs singed included a cooperation on agriculture and education and one between the Iran Central Chamber of Cooperatives and the Indonesian Cooperative Council.

“Iran and Indonesia are both big countries in terms of population, Iran with over 70 million people and Indonesia with 230 million people,” Yudhoyono said.

“In that sense, the development of small and medium enterprises as well as cooperatives is important for both of us, and therefore, we need to cooperate on these areas.”

Also signed Tuesday were agreements between commerce chambers in Iran and Indonesia, as well as a shareholder agreement between Pertamina and National Iranian Oil Refining & Distribution Co and Petrofield Refinery Company of Malaysia to build a US$6 billion refinery plant in Banten, Indonesia.

And the two countries committed to improve further economic relations, including trade.

Trade between the two countries has seen Indonesia enjoy surpluses during the past five years.

According to data at Iranian customs, total trade in the 2004/2005 fiscal year reached US$323 million, with Indonesia’s surplus at US$53 million.

Indonesia’s exports to Iran include palm oil, paper, textile and textile products, wood and rubber.

Indonesia’s imports from Iran include aluminum, steel, liquefied petroleum gas, ethylene, carpet, handicraft and nuts.

President Yudhoyono and his entourage will fly next to Dakar, Senegal, on Wednesday, to attend the 11th Organization of Islamic Conference summit.