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Becoming a Tough Generation of Antiterrorism

PROBOLINGGO – The Peaceful Indonesia Alliance (AIDA) held an Interactive dialogue activity with the theme of Learning Together to Become a Resilient Generation at SMKN 2 Kraksaan, Probolinggo Regency, Wednesday (4/24/2019). The activity is part of the AIDA peace campaign safari among students through the story of victims and former perpetrators of terrorism.

Two presenters shared their life experiences after the tragedy. They are Yuni Arsih who was an indirect victim of the 2004 Kuningan bombing and Choirul Ihwan, a former member of the terrorism network.

For Yuni Arsih, the incident caused much suffering to him. He lost his husband and backbone of his family. Her husband, Alm. Suryadi, who was working at the park in the complex of the Australian Embassy in the Kuningan area, South Jakarta, died from a bomb explosion.

Yuni, who was the guest speaker at the event, talked a lot about her victim. The departure of her husband claimed Yuni Arsih’s happiness. As a result of the tragedy, he was forced to assume the status of a widow, and had to raise his son alone. That he went through was not easy. His son had experienced depression and a change in attitude when he found out his father died due to the bomb terror. Despite the extreme sadness, Yuni tried to remain strong and continue to motivate and guide her children in a positive direction.

At present, Yuni Arsih has let her husband go and tries to make peace with the situation. The most important thing for him is to make sure his son gets the best education. Even though her husband is gone, she wants her son to have a bright future. To the Kraksaan 2 State Vocational School students who participated in the Interactive Dialogue, the veiled woman advised them to always respect their parents and teachers. He also warned against replying to violence inflicted by others with violence as well.

On the same occasion, Choirul Ihwan, also shared his life experience. He recounted his past which was once joined in a network of terrorist groups, before finally deciding to move from the path of violence to peace. After leaving the world of terrorism, Choirul busied himself with gardening activities. He is also active with AIDA in campaigning for peace with the community. In the Interactive Dialogue at SMKN 2 Kraksaan, he advised the students to be careful in using social media. According to him, the development of social media now makes it easier for terrorist groups to exert influence.

A total of 47 students attended the Interactive Dialogue participant. They looked enthusiastic listening to the life experiences of the speakers. Some participants even showed expression of sadness and tears in their eyes when Yuni Arsih shared her life experience. Some participants also expressed their curiosity about the story of Choirul’s involvement in the world of terrorism through a series of questions.

One student claimed to have learned important lessons from the story of victims and former perpetrators of terrorism. From the victim’s story, the student learns about the meaning of humanity. According to him, the victim has taught to always be patient and accept the destiny set by God. He also learned the importance of being grateful for the blessings of life. He imagined what would happen if the bombing befalls on his family.

Initially, the student claimed to hate terrorists and thought to repay their actions. However, after listening to the life experiences of the victims and former perpetrators, he admitted that he would not participate in replying to violence with violence. He prefers the way of peace through forgiveness. Meanwhile, from the story of the former perpetrator, the student realized that there were really a handful of people who believed in a wrong religious understanding so that they could plan and carry out acts of terrorism. According to him, understanding such groups must be avoided. Furthermore, he said that Muslims should follow the path of peace taught by the Prophet Muhammad.

Overall, the student admitted that he was very fortunate to be an Interactive Dialogue participant. “This activity is very positive for adolescents like me and for Indonesian teens to not follow bad behavior. I hope this activity can be bigger and develop everywhere in Indonesia, “he said.

At the end of the activity, AIDA Director, Hasibullah Satrawi, emphasized the importance of fostering a spirit of resilience in the younger generation. The life experiences of victims and former perpetrators, according to him, contain valuable lessons about the toughness that must be absorbed by students participating in Interactive Dialogue. The resilience of the victim’s story is on the spirit of rising from adversity or disaster, while from the former offender is the determination to acknowledge past mistakes and correct them.

Representatives from SMKN 2 Kraksaan expressed their gratitude to AIDA for holding an Interactive Dialogue “Learning Together to Become a Tough Generation”. He advised the students to learn from the activity. “I hope you can take this activity carefully and take lessons. We can use what we get for the future, “said a teacher at Kraksaan 2 State Vocational School. [FAH]

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