The Difficulties to Dismiss FPI

If the motherland can speak, it will cry after watch the Indonesian situation now. Many days before, there were three people killed and four people injured in incident of violence in Cekeusik, Pandeglang, Banten. They are members of Ahmadiyah, one of the Islamic groups based in Jakarta. They were killed after being tortured by hundreds of people who join Islamic Defender Front (FPI). 

Yesterday, President of Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono (SBY) has ordered law enforcement officials to search for a legitimate and legal way to dismiss FPI who can be blame in this situation. However, many people still doubt that Presidentt SBY will dismiss FPI. The purpose of this essay is discussing the several factors that indicate the difficulties to dismiss the mass organizations like FPI.

For those who believe the statement of SBY will dismiss FPI consider many argumentations. Perhaps they could say that all words from the president have implications to every law enforcers. They might say that the statement of President SBY is very clear in order to create a better circumstance in religious atmosphere including relation between Islamic follower and Ahmadiyah follower. This is true if we think that statement of Presiden SBY would be followed by law enforcer. But this is partially wrong when we think the sociological fact or the relation of FPI with other mass organizations, and political network behind the FPI. Believe it or not, the existence of FPI is related to the government who always take advantage from it. 

Besides that, there are various opinions about the existence of FPI and the position of Ahmadiyah. Many people still believe that FPI has the good intention to protect Moslem Community from many things that can be recognized as contrary to Islamic religion principle. They trust and support FPI to supervise the nightclub in Jakarta and to warn people who tried to interpret Islam with broad interpretation. Many Islamic communities convince that Ahmadiyah had wrong interpretation about Islam and tends to destroy the fundamental principal in Islam. 

But, it is not a strong argumentation to let the FPI action to Ahmadiyah follower. We can’t forget the fact about FPI actions. FPI members always create a terrible situation. They attack other group and sometimes harm people. They also often act brutally and ignore the principle of tolerance among religious communities in Indonesia. The incident in Cekeusik which three people died is not the first. There are series brutally actions in previous time. Because we live under the law umbrella, the government should take the strong decision to dismiss FPI. But it is hard to dismiss FPI for several reasons.

The first is the networking. Social researcher from Netherland, Gerry Van Klinken, ever describes about the networking of FPI. In one of international publications, he said FPI has strong network with the regime and many prominence people including General Wiranto (former The Chief of Indonesian National Army), and General Kivlan Zen. They were noted as one of the founding fathers of FPI. According to historical data, FPI was established in 1998 when the regime of Soeharto falls down. In that situation, many pressure groups were established to anticipate the horizontal conflict between government and society.  Klinken also said that it is impossible to dismiss FPI because of the relationship and back up from prominence people. There is a mutual symbiosis between military officer or politician and FPI member. Politician and military need FPI to express their hidden agenda about political issues, and FPI need them too in order to get the finance for their activity. 

The second is the influence. FPI has strong influence to its follower. From year to year, FPI maintain its ideology to encourage its follower. Andri Rosadi, the researcher from Gajah Mada University, said FPI masses are the youngers who have strong motivation to express their religious thought. They have the same dream to practice the Islamic value in their everyday life. They have the same disagreement to the government and start to make a movement to reach their dream. Most of them believe this government must be replaced with Islamic government in order to create Islamic government. The famous quotation from FPI website is noble life or died as syuhada. 

The third is the situation. According to Van Klinken and Rosadi, the existence of FPI is depends on the politic, social, and economic situation. In politic situation, the government can’t guarantee peace and freedom for people to express their belief. The government is not established law to punish everyone and mass organizations who attack the freedom of other people. In social, many radical organizations are increased because of problem in law enforcement. There are no rules about mass organizations that limit mass activity. In economic, there is huge numerous unemployment in our society. These situations give contributions to the establishment of radical organizations like FPI. 

Considering the networking, the situation, and influence, it is difficult to dismiss FPI. Although the government success to dismiss this organization, but in the same time, the same organization will established with the different name. If the government wants to solve the problem about radical organization, it must solve all problems in social, politics, and economics.

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