Israel-Hamas conflict escalation has entered second week; as casualties climbing to around 400 dead and over 2000 people injured, the first clash that broke right after 6-month ceasefire agreement between both sides is already noted among the most intense since the Six Day War in year 1967.
International community has been called upon to intervene, at least to promote ceasefire and further peace resolution. In the meantime, marches and demonstration rallies opposing Israel's aerial and naval bombardment have been held as far away from Dublin, Baghdad, to Jakarta.
An Indonesian Islamic militant group, Islamic Defenders’ Front (FPI), planned to recruit up to 1000 volunteers to fight in the Hamas-run Gaza Strip, Reuters reported. “Fighters should be in good physical condition, have a strong faith and be ready to die,” said Ahmad Soebri Lubis as head of group.
However, Indonesia's Ministry of Foreign Affairs spokesperson, Teuku Faizasyah told detikNews [id] that such initiative is not advised knowing the difficulty of entering Israel territory at the present moment.
On January 3rd, Indonesian Red Cross (PMI) opened a donation program [id] for contributing fund for Palestinian victims, coinciding with the embarkation of medical team Mer-C for Gaza Strip, as reported by Antara, state news agency.
According to an official press release from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Indonesian government condemned the attack and considered it as overreacting violence and unproportional action against rocket attacks launched by Palestinians.
Palestine President Mahmoud Abbas is also set to meet with Indonesia’s humanitarian team on Saturday in Yaman of Jordan, with a number of local journalists also participating in the meeting. The team is scheduled to discuss matters with Palestine’s ministers of foreign affairs and health also to hand over some aids from the Indonesian government.
“During the meeting, we will give two tons of medical aids worth US$ 585 (Rp 6.4 million) and fund of Rp. 2 billion.”, head of the Crisis Control at Indonesia's Health Ministry, dr. Rustam S. Pakaya, later confirmed.
Meanwhile, reactions have also spread across the Indonesian blogsphere. Opinions are mainly pro-Palestinian ones, much of them directed against Israel's military answer to militant Palestinian group Hamas in the Gaza Strip.
The escalation is perceived more as interreligious conflict bound to happen for most Indonesian bloggers, rather than a political struggle for autonomy over territory. In result, a large portion of audience dutifully reacts in religious manner, intensifying an emotional bond with the rage and sufferance of Muslim Palestinians far beyond nationalistic reasoning.
The following post excerpts may represent differing perspectives and approach: from crying out “God is great” to signing online petitions — each to its own intention, yet all serve a common cause: saving Gaza, saving Palestine.
Ida Abidin gives no mercy to the Israelis as new year begins:
This war will never stop if the “evil” Israel still in the Palestine land. ISRAEL MUST PERISH FROM EARTH. Israel barbarian! Israel is very brutal! Their attacks only make the children suffer, the children became orphans and destroy the dream Palestinian children. I think the beginning of this New Year will be better than the previous year. I hope the year 2009 to be years of happiness for the children of Muslims in Iraq, Palestine, Somalia and Afghanistan.
Dakwatuna.com praises global support [id] in antagonizing Israel's aggression, while Senopati Arthur provides analysis along with an Islamic resolution to the catastrophe:
Ini bukan saatnya lagi untuk pertemuan, rapat, dan gencatan senjata. Israel sekali lagi telah menumpahkan darah Muslim dan ALLAH telah menentukan Jihad sebagai solusi terhadap tindakan pengecut seperti sekarang. Hanya dengan pembentukan Khilafah, pasukan muslim akan bebas berderap kembali dan berjihad di Palestina, dimana Kalimatullah akan kembali menjadi tinggi.
A group of young college students gathered up for an impromptu discussion over at Rosenqueen Company [id], while listening to Rock the Casbah by The Clash.
Inilah Jalanku, blogger in Surakarta, questions the motive of political party-sponsored demonstration:
… nuansa pemilu begitu kental mewarnai aksi damai menentang agresi militer Israel durjana ke Jalur Gaza itu. Bendera-bendera PKS berkibar ditengah-tengah para demonstran. Yang membuat orang menaruh curiga kepada PKS ialah karena adanya bendera PKS yang bertuliskan angka 8, nomor urut PKS dalam pemilu tahun ini.
Kabarnya, bawaslu pun mulai melakukan pemeriksaan terkait aksi damai yang dilakukan oleh ribuan kader dan simpatisan PKS.
It is said that bawaslu (Elections Monitoring Board) begins conducting inspection concerning rallies carried out by thousands of PKS cadres and supporters.
Zoel, graphic designer and blogger from Malang, chooses to give peace a chance after Friday shalat prayer:
Sudah bisa ditebak, demo anti Israel -yang juga membawa nama Amerika dan sekutunya- merebak di mana-mana, tidak hanya di negara yang mayoritas muslim, tetapi juga di Amerika dan Uni Eropa. Di Indonesia, isu yang diangkat adalah seputar Islam, kapitalisme, dan penegakan Khilafah.
Aku pribadi tidak yakin semua orang Muslim Palestina tidak ingin hidup damai berdampingan dengan orang Yahudi dan Nasrani. Demikian pula orang Yahudi maupun Muslim di Israel, tidak selamanya mereka mau hidup di bawah bayang-bayang sasaran roket pejuang Hamas. Tetapi, karena isu agama pada perang ini sudah terlanjur merekat kuat, entah sampai kapan militer Israel menggempur daerah yang mereka anggap sebagai basis Hamas, sementara pejuang Hamas dengan roket dan intifada-nya terus menghantui Israel.
Personally, I'm not sure all Palestinian Muslims don't want to live peacefully with Jews and Christians. Jews and Muslims in Israel likewise, they're not going to want to live as targets of Hamas’ rockets forever. However, for the reason that the religious interest of this war already binds strongly, it is unsure for how long Israeli military is going to attack regions assumed as Hamas bases, with Hamas militants with its rockets and intifada continues to haunt Israel.
Akhyari, Indonesian blogger in Cambodia, adds a non-religious perspective of the conflict:
This is not about inter-faith war, this is a visible form of colonization. This is not only about embargo and sabotage, but about surviving under the bomb rain, this is not about equal right, but about un-justice during tens of year.
Fatih Syuhud, senior blogger located in Surabaya, keeps update of Gaza simultaneously with Komunitas Blogger Muslim.
Brooklyn-based journalist and book author, Christopher Taylor, foresees a prolonged effect caused by the never-ending conflict:
In other words, this is spilling beyond local borders, poisoning religious and cultural relations far beyond the limits of Gaza. For what it's worth: Stop.
Using Goggle's blog search engine, around 600 or more results retrieved for the term “gaza” for the past week, which is also one of the most searched terms in Blog Indonesia aggregation site, resulting around 250 blog posts and counting.