Melanesian Statehood?

I have often heard and read about the Melanesian independent state movement in West Papua. This movement had obtained support from some group in Vanuatu, in PNG as well as its other neighbouring countries, some even coming from Australia and New Zealand. A pure Melanesian homeland, free and independent from foreign-race occupation which has always been supported by brothers and sisters in the entire region of the South Pacific. The Melanesian region.

I sympathize for all struggles of the oppressed in our world. Although, as the mentions concerning the Melanesian brotherhood and race often arises, it also reminds me of the many issues I hear in many parts of the world. I am reminded of ideologies such as those established by the Ku Klux Klan, the Apartheid in old South Africa, and Hitler’s Nazi Germany being few of the most notorious and well known movements based on the idea of social purity. Without excluding many others, even the ones still existing today- how countries and governments have started to label immigrants from war-torn countries as illegal based on the colour of their skin. They are unwanted, illegal immigrants, or to be more precise, illegal human beings. Hypocrisy is at its peak. These people left to die on land and sea.

With the same rethoric regarding the Papuan independence along with its arguments, it all ends and lead us back to the root basis, which is race.

Is this real? Is this true? Is this the path that we want for our future? I dare say no.

I was brought up by my mother to read, and as a child, one of my favourite stories was about a young and poor girl selling candles during Christmas Eve in a small town in Europe. It was written by H.C. Andersen, who was famous for his children stories, a man that must be as white as any Scandinavian was born. I was also highly invested to books written by Chinese authors such as To Liong To, Sin Tiauw Hiap, Warrior from Tai Li, among others. The authors, definitely as Chinese as a Chinese can be. During adolescence, I enjoyed books written by Charles Dickens, Yasunari Kawabata, and titles such as Dracula by Bram Stoker, as well as Le Carre with his spy thriller stories. From these literature many others, I have learned a few things, including the fact that there is no such thing that can be regarded as purity in culture and race. Such ideas are only a nightmare which was created by lunatics that bring us nothing but sorrow.

I listen to old tembang from Javanese traditional music, especially West Javanese. I love Mozart and Sibelius. Beatles, Jimi Hendrix, Miles Davis, Oscar Peterson, Avishai Cohen, Astor Piazzolla, and Debussy. I have also come to enjoy Korean pop, among many other kinds of music. All in all, I dream in thousands of languages that gives peace to my heart. I am human.

For these reasons, I must say that I will never support any political movement nor organization based on racial arguments. No matter who they are, powerful or weak.

Racism in an insult to humanity and should be regarded as cancer.

Editor’s Note: Articles in Opinion section are written by West Papua Now readers. Please contact us should you wish to share your opinion to our readers.

A Letter for Mr. Wenda

I have read many articles written about West Papua, either written by the Indonesian Government, foreign writers and journalist, or written by Benny Wenda and his OPM friends.

I am Indonesian, and I am not going to tell you whether I am a Papuan or not, because first of all, it’s not important. Although I never really loved, cared nor hated OPM, but Mr. Wenda for me is quite interesting. He is Papuan, whom talked a lot about the welfare and care about Papuan but he lives in London.

Now, as an ordinary member of my village and town, a part of my large family and friends, I do care about the welfare of the people around me. I live with them, share almost everything with them, and most of all, I love them.

I traveled quite a lot lately, not only within Papua or other islands in Indonesia, but I’ve had the opportunity to travel  to other countries, and I saw a lot of things, and it has made me love my village and the people even more.

Now, I try to make a comparison about what Mr. Wenda said about Papua and Indonesia, and compare it with what the Indonesian have done in Papua.

First, you are talking about genocide. There you are… Mr. Wenda is lying to his teeth. Second, the destruction of Papua. If Mr. Wenda thinks that building road and highways almost 4000 km all over Papua is destruction, I think he is a lunatic. Building roads means a lot for the people, especially in remote areas around Papua. It will open isolated areas and reduce the price of goods. I heard that the president really cares about it. I know the Indonesian are bringing rocks from other islands because of lack of rocks in dense forests in many areas in Papua. They built schools, and I am part of one of them, I graduated from those schools.

What about you Mr. Wenda? What have you done for the Papuan, except for making yourself popular and living abroad, enjoying your popularity and maybe also a better life compared to us here in Papua?  I think you are a disgrace, for your family and Papuan as a whole. You chose to live in the mercy of strangers, and call yourself a warrior. No Mr. Wenda, you are a coward.

Mr. Wenda, have you heard the story about Mr. Kilion Manggara, a retired elementary school teacher who thanks to his hard work with the residents in his village managed to bring electricity through Solar Power Plant? Now, Amdui Village has been electrified from the Centralized Electric Plant with 30 kWp capacity for about 130 families in 103 homes. Yes, the government built the electricity plant, but it was him that made it possible by bringing the government’s attention to his village.

Meanwhile, You, Mr. Wenda, you are asking the whole world to take the focus on you, and for that, you are willing to do anything, including lying. For Papuan man, you are not considered as a man.

With all the bad things and mishaps of the Indonesian government, I choose them easy compared to you. At least the Indonesian are trying hard to take care and bring welfare for the Papuan, and I guess I cannot even possibly dream that it will come from you.

Mr. Wenda, sorry to say, but you are a loser. I love my family, I love Papua. I don’t think you even care about us. I can tell you hundreds stories, but I lost my appetite, it’s just because of you Mr. Wenda.

Sorong, March 2018


Editor’s Note: Articles in Opinion section are written by West Papua Now readers. Please contact us should you wish to share your opinion to our readers.