Sunday, November 9, 2008

Bali Bombers executed

This morning, on the prison island of Nusakambangan, convicted terrorists Amrozi, Mukhlas and Imam Samudra were executed by firing squad. Convicted 5 years ago of the 2002 Bali bomb blast which killed 202 people, mostly foreign tourists, their death will hopefully bring some measure of peace for the families of their many victims.

I am generally opposed to the death penalty, but if anyone deserves such an extreme punishment it is these f*$#ers, and no one should shed any tears on their behalf. What puzzles me is that their spiritual leader, Abu Bakar Bashir is still walking around preaching hatred. Most recently he's been declaring the three terrorists as heroes and martyrs, and urged others to follow in their footsteps to fight for Islam. His followers have vowed revenge for the execution, denouncing it as "murder" (as opposed to the murder of 202 innocent civilians, which is "heroism"). You may recall Bashir not so long ago exhorting his followers not to tolerate non-Muslims, and to beat them up if they see them.

I can't quite work out whether Bashir is insane or just evil or both (probably both). The radical cleric has claimed that the bombing was actually carried out by the CIA (in order to create a pretense for the oppression of Islam); this is despite Amrozi and friends proudly admitting to doing it themselves. I'm not sure what crazy parallel universe he and his flock inhabit, but does he really expect that people who admit to mass murder (including that of the innocent local Muslims killed in the blast) should just be let off with a pat on the back?

The thing I just can't figure out is that after so many recorded incitements to violence, Bashir is free to keep on doing it. Indonesia is a shady society which has a long history of anti-government figures getting locked up on trumped-up charges, turning up dead or simply disappearing. When you consider that, it is indeed surprising that Southeast Asia's answer to Osama bin Laden is still a free man. As much as Western governments have attempted to influence Indonesia to get him locked up, it is really Muslim communities and governments around the world who should be shouting the loudest on this. After all, the greatest enemies of Islam are not the "Great Satan" (America), or Danish cartoonists, but the radical hatemongers like Bashir who are doing their best to convince the rest of the world that Muslims are all crazy terrorists, and thus do more than anyone to contribute to Islamophobia everywhere.

Left: Extremist imam and perennial beauty pageant winner Abu Bakar Bashir.

1 comment:

  1. Japanese Spicy TofuNovember 11, 2008 at 3:59 PM

    Your right, he's pretty hot - i'd hit that twice, no condom.