National Geographic : 2009 Oct
I N D O N E LOMBOK RIAU 93% RIAU ARCHIPELAGO 86% BANGKA BELITUNG ARCH. 86% NANGGROE ACEH DARUSSALAM (ACEH) 98% EAST KALIMANTAN 85% JAMBI 96% WEST KALIMANTAN 59% CENTRAL KALIMANTAN 74% S. SUMATRA 98% NORTH SUMATRA 72% W. JAVA 98% LAMPUNG 95% BANTEN 96% EAST JAVA 98% S. SULAWESI 89% WEST SULAWESI CENTRAL SULAWESI 80% CENTRAL JAVA 97% WEST SUMATRA 98% BENGKULU 98% SOUTH KALIMANTAN 97% N. SULAWESI 29% GORONTALO 98% BALI 12% SOUTHEAST SULAWESI 95% W. NUSA TENGGARA 98% E. NUSA TENGGARA* 9% YOGYAKARTA 93% JAKARTA 88% EQUATOR Banda Aceh Ngruki Makassar Jakarta PHILIPPINES MALAYSIA THAILAND MALAYSIA SINGAPORE BRUNEI INDIAN OCEAN like a conductor. "But if there is hindrance by enemies, then we have the right to use violence in response. at s what we call jihad. ere is no nobler life than to die as a martyr for jihad." He praises the September 11th and Bali bomb- ings. ey were not, he insists, acts of terrorism. ey were simply "reactions to what has been done by the enemies of Islam." Indonesia is tucked away in a far corner of the world map, a rain of islands just north of Australia, yet violence here can have global repercussions. It is the most populous Mus- lim country in the world, home to 207 million Muslims---36 million more than the next larg- est Muslim nation, Pakistan, and two-thirds as many as all the countries of the Middle East combined. It is extremely devout; a recent Pew Global Attitudes survey found that Indonesia was one of the world s most religious nations. It s also a thriving democracy, the third largest in the world, a er India and the United States. But it s a new democracy, still nding its legs--- little more than a decade has passed since the country s virtual dictator, Suharto, was ousted. The end of his rule granted Indonesians new freedoms of expression, though it also unleashed radicals like Baasyir, who had honed his extrem- ist views during a long exile in Malaysia, where he d ed a er his arrest for opposing Suharto. A year a er the 2002 Bali bombings came the rst J. W. Marriott hotel bombing in Jakarta, then in 2004 a strike on the Australian Embassy, also in Jakarta, and in 2005 a triple suicide attack, again in Bali. And just a few months ago, a er a long gap during which many experts came to believe that the threat of terrorism was greatly reduced, came the bombings at the Ritz-Carlton Hotel and, once more, the J. W. Marriott. ese are scattered events in a vast nation. But in the words of one Indonesian proverb, roughly translated, MARTIN GAMACHE, NG STAFF SOURCES: MICHAEL BUEHLER, COLUMBIA UNIVERSITY; INDONESIA INTERCENSAL POPULATION SURVEY, 2005; ARSKAL SALIM, MAX PLANCK INSTITUTE 0mi 200 0km 200 In 2001 the government designated Aceh a Special Autonomous Region, allowing the province to implement sharia as part of its criminal code.