Indonesia: Why They Hate Osama


September 17, 2007: The collapse of support for Islamic terrorism was not just an Indonesian thing. Throughout the Islamic world, the al Qaeda terrorism in Iraq, Indonesia, Saudi Arabia, Jordan and Afghanistan has turned public opinion against the Islamic militants, and leaders like Osama bin Laden. The loss of popular support has made it difficult for Islamic terrorists to recruit and operate. That is particularly true in Indonesia, which was never very enthusiastic about Islamic radicalism to begin with. Meanwhile, even the ethnic unrest among Melanesians (who are often Christians) in eastern Indonesia, is dying down. Newly independent East Timor continues to fester, but mainly for economic reasons. There is no functioning economy in East Timor, thus few jobs and lots of anger over the situation. As a practical matter, the wars in Indonesia are over. There are still some Islamic terrorists running around, or, more commonly, away from the police. There are still some ethnic separatist rebels in Papua. But natural disasters, like earthquakes, are killing more people than man made terrorism.


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