Fw: Persecution in Indonesia
- ----- Original Message -----From: Peter KentleyTo: AirborneSent: Tuesday, December 04, 2001 7:14 AMSubject: Persecution in IndonesiaJihad Persecution of Christians in Indonesia
Dear concerned friends,
The following pictures tell the story seen by Jeff Hammond as he drove through the Poso region of Indonesia in the last week. There are more photos available on the IFC web site (see below) displaying burnt churches and recent devastation from Jihad attacks.
How would you feel if your local church and your house were burnt down? How would you feel if your family had to flee to the bush to survive? How would you feel if Jihad fighters invaded your neighbourhood to terrorise and destroy?
These are questions we must ask if we are to come to some understanding of the shocking position of Christians brothers and sisters in Indonesia as you read this email. People under attack from jihad fighters from outside their district reinforced by jihad warriors from outside their country. Would you try to defend yourself and your family and friends?
The accuracy of these reports have been attested to by many sources including the UN, the Jakarta Post, other Christian organisations and the Laskar Jihad's own web site. If you have any doubts, log onto the Google search engine and search "Poso Laskar Jihad".
What can you do?
1. Research the Jihad for yourself - as mentioned above.
2. Pray that the hand of God may stay this evil.
3. Pass on the information to other concerned people.
4. Promote media coverage of these events.
5. Bring this to the attention of concerned religious, business and political leaders.
The following pictures and explanations have been supplied by Jeff Hammond. Their web site is: http://www.ifc2020.org/
Some jihad post on palu-poso road where Christians cannot pass. All Christians dragged from cars and killed. Their hero "Osama Bin Laden"
Jihad post flying the jihad flag - black with white Arabic writing
Jihad posts manned with military weapons
Under bin laden - it says "this is our leader"
OVERVIEW by DR MARK DURIE
Pastor, St Hilary's Anglican Church Kew
Sunday December 2, 2001
The city of Tentena in Sulawesi, Indonesia is the latest target of
Indonesia's Laskar Jihad. In its newsletters issued during the past
year, the Laskar Jihad has been declaring its intention of 'restoring
security' in the Poso region. They are now on their way to taking
control of the Christian city of Tentena, which has been a safe haven
for Christian refugees during the conflicts of the past three years.
Thousands of houses in the villages between Poso and Tentena have been
burned down or bulldozed over the last three days: villages affected
include Sepe, Silanca, Betalemba, Paitwunga, Tangkura, Sangionora and
Eebua. Inhabitants of these villages have fled to Tentena. The Jihad
forces now control the roads going into Tentena and have cut off all
supplies going into Tentena.
Michael Elmquist, deputy United Nations Humanitarian Coordinator, said
Tuesday that a recent mission to the province had found an "extremely
tense" situation, with a "depth of hatred" between Christians and
Muslims. He reported that up to 7,000 members of Laskar Jihad have
moved from the Malukus to continue their battle in Poso.
The residents of Tentena were all awoken on Saturday night (December 1),
with men placed on guard around the city, whilst women and children are
packing small bags, preparing to evacuate into the jungles. This
community of around 50,000 is without significant armed protection.
They fear a massacre within the next 48 hours.
In its published newsletters and on its web site, the Laskar Jihad has
repeatedly rejected pleas from Christian communities in Ambon and in
Sulawesi for reconciliation, claiming that such requests are only a
smokescreen for violent intentions. In the meantime, fresh Jihad forces
continue to arrive for the Poso campaign: 900 jihad fighters arrived in
Poso by boat on Wednesday (Nov 28).
In the past both Christians and Muslims have perpetrated violence in the
area, although Indonesian media reports have emphasized Muslim
casualties. The conflicts began in 1998 with Muslim riots and attacks
against Christian homes in Poso itself. In later phases of the conflict
Christian groups counterattacked, with significant Muslim casualties.
However the arrival this year of the Laskar Jihad has placed the whole
conflict on a completely different footing, transforming it from the
category of localized interfaith and intertribal conflict - the Poso
ethnic group are 90% Christian in a majority Muslim province - into the
domain of international Jihad. The Sulawesi Jihad forces include
Afghanis and Pakistanis who are training the jihad militia in the
manufacture and use of bombs and other weapons. Its leader Jaffar Umar
Thalib is a veteran of the Soviet-Afghan war. Where formerly military
posts lined the roads into Tentena, now there are Jihad forces, with
black Jihad Flags flying and posters of Osama Bin Laden and the
subscript "This is our Leader". Bin Laden is known to have been one of
the financial backers of the Laskar Jihad.
Why does the Indonesian government and international opinion permit the
continued activities of the violent Laskar Jihad organization with known
links to international terrorism? Why is the world so disinterested in
this campaign of terror, a campaign whose far-reaching objectives are
shared with Osama Bin Laden's Al Qaeda network? Why has the Indonesia
government been unable to prevent religious conflict in Sulawesi?
Recent reports indicate that some military units have even joined forces
with the Jihad militia. At present virtually all armed Government
forces have withdrawn from the Tentena area. Christians in the area
report that only three rifles have been left between the 35 police
stationed in the township.
Will December 25, 2001 prove to be the 'Bloody Christmas' which the
Laskar Jihad forces gathering around Tentena have promised? If so,
this will be to Indonesia's enduring shame, and to the shame of the rest
of the world. At this moment, while all the world's eyes are on the
Middle East, a tragedy of huge proportions is passing virtually
unnoticed in Indonesia.
St Hilary's Anglican Church
12 John St