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Tantowi Yahya and Siti Ruhaini at IDN Times Talks: Harmony in the Middle of Terrorism and Radicalism Threats

16 Nov 19 | 09:20

Amelia Rosary

Tantowi Yahya and Siti Ruhaini at IDN Times Talks: Harmony in the Middle of Terrorism and Radicalism Threats

Today, 16 November 2019 is the International Day of Tolerance. IDN Media decided to string up some words about what we had done to actually appreciate divergences and prioritize tolerance above all. Last 14 November 2019, we invited Tantowi Yahya as the Ambassador of Indonesia to New Zealand and Siti Ruhaini as the Presidential Special Staff to discuss harmony in the middle of terrorism and radicalism threats that all countries in this world might face as well.

Hearing the news about the suicide bombing in Medan last 13 November 2019, IDN Times, then, wanted to deliver our empathy by conducting this talk-show. One of the reasons why it was held was actually because it let us see what we could learn from the terrorism incident in New Zealand last March 2019.

Questioned by Uni Lubis (Editor-in-Chief of IDN Times), the Presidential Special Staff, Siti Ruhaini, who was obliged to take care of the international religious issues stated that the very first step taken by the Indonesia government should be all about the coordination between each component in the society. She emphasized, “We don’t want to generalize and stigmatize a certain group for something mischievous—it's a very good thing to begin. Start using positive terms as well. Instead of saying 'deradicalization', we better say 'sowing religious moderation'."

Tantowi Yahya briefly explained that the terrorism in New Zealand was caused by the white supremacy in the country—a feeling of injustice the white people felt caused by the coming of the immigrants. He let us know what was interesting in the way New Zealand tackled it down: each component in the country was surely involved in the process of solving the issue. Media, especially, took significant part as well. Under the command of parliament, they signed a protocol stating that media would stand independently without any political tendencies. Tantowi Yahya mentioned, "The Prime Minister of New Zealand, Jacinda Ardern, believed that there were these 2 things that the bomber was looking for: popularity and our fear. Therefore, she boldly stated, 'We aren't afraid and we don't want to make you popular either by not revealing your name and showing your picture.'."

Siti Ruhaini responded to Tantowi Yahya's statement and agreed, "That's the one thing we need to learn from New Zealand—a small country that calmly and successfully overcame the case. Indonesians need more social awareness to understand that we also need a heaven on earth by having a good and peaceful place to live—the meaning of heaven isn't always the literal one. Educating our children to be more critical of the differences existing in all parts in this world is also another effective way to create a better Indonesia in the near future."

IDN Times held this talk-show in order to deliver our sympathy for the same kind of different cases of terrorism in all around the world. In addition, we wanted to practically bring around the awareness that the freedom in reporting news apparently was not limitless. We somehow needed to make a line bordering us from creating negative news that potentially triggered social chaos. That has always been the way IDN Times provides news. As the spearheads of any information, we only want to positively impact society. 

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