The Role of Young Generation in Counter-Terrorism
Violence against civilians in the pursuit of political, ideological, and religious aims has broken out through the whole nation. It has become a huge issue since the 20th century and led to the mass rebellion committed by a certain group of people in the proliferation of political authority. That is what we call terrorism—the massive insurgency which brings up the murder acts amidst society in the pursuance of political concerns. The killing acts, the indiscriminate and brutal slaughter of people, occurred not only among adults but also adolescents and even children and the interventionist forces have eradicated the hope of children and young generation. The major handling of this force is by taking a strong move from society and young generation plays a crucial role in this extent.
It is undeniable that young people are actually both perpetrators and victims in the terror attacks occurring in the wide parts of the countries, unexceptionally Indonesia. If we look back into the past, in 1965, Indonesia encountered the genocide between Suharto’s New Order regime and Indonesian Communist Party in the pursuit of political and ideological aim. The genocide which was known as G30SPKI was affected by Suharto’s propaganda desiring to depose Sukarno from being an Indonesian president. The genocide turned out massacre on people who allegedly embodied with Partai Komunis Indonesia (Indonesian Communist Party).
Although the coup has long occurred in the era of 1960s and disappeared from the Indonesian history schoolbook for the doctrine of Suharto’s regime, it, nowadays, re-blows up by the rumor issues that communism is going to emerge again and caused the public protest among Indonesians. To this extent, the role of young people plays a crucial influence in strengthening their capacity to prevent such terror attacks.
Bob Geldof, at the opening ceremony of the One Young World Summit held in Thailand, stated that, “Call them millennials, call them young generation, call them whatever you like, but please don’t call them the future until they take responsibility for the present”. As Bob delivered the massage in that global gathering of future world leaders, he was referring to young people. In this case, according to my point of view, strengthening the literacy media among Indonesian people could be one of the ways young generation can make to solve the terror. As what has happened to the burn of the leftist books in Indonesia a few weeks ago for the sake of the fear of the communist resurgence, that is the time when young people as the young generation takes an action. The action can start from, for example, carrying out a number of innovative programs such as the library campaign named Gerakan 1000 Perpustakaan (1000 libraries movement) where youth establish 1000 libraries providing books for children and adolescents around Indonesia to encourage a reading interest among Indonesian people. That is in line with what my friends and I are planning to do in the city of Yogyakarta, Indonesia. We plan to build a small free library called Saung Membaca whose design would smell like “books and coffee”, a small library with a small café inside. It is free for the people to read the books in Saung Membaca and it also does not cost anything when they want to borrow the books, only if they return the books late we are going to charge it. Furthermore, as students of English Literature, we also hold monthly public discussion regarding political and literary issues by inviting several lecturers of our universities to that library. This would enable us to understand something deeper and avoids us to any form of both ignorance and assumption. Therefore, by campaigning those movements, people will be able to enrich knowledge and understand more about what communism actually is. Other than that, since ignorance became the major reason that a number of groups banned every single thing related to communism in Indonesia, increasing literacy media would be a better way in leading people to avoid ignorance.
In conclusion, we, as the young generation, are pursued to take roles and responsibilities for both the present and the future. For there are a bunch of problems perpetually happening in this country including the endless terror attacks around citizen, it will be shameful for us if we only sit and watch without carrying out any action for a better living. Moreover, it would be a lot more shameful if the thoughts and plans of ours to take roles only remain staying in our mind without being implemented. Thus, this is the time for us as young generation to take actions and the right time is actually now. The action can start from small changes around our environment and developing literacy media through library campaign would be a good way to decrease terror attacks amidst citizen. Such action is still indeed a small thing but small things can grow big if we do it with a strong commitment.