Seminar Nasional Pendidikan


“Mengukir Kembali Makna Kebangkitan Nasional Dalam Pendidikan”






DASAR PEMIKIRAN
101 Tahun sudah hari Kebangkitan Nasional diperingati dengan sesuatu yang sifatnya seremonial belaka, usaha-usaha perbaikan di berbagai sektor belum memperlihatkan perbaikan yang signifikan, hasilnya bangsa ini masih belum mampu bangkit dari keterpurukan yang selama ini membelenggu. Kemiskinan, kelaparan, kebodohan serta berbagai pemandangan yang memprihatinkan seolah tidak pernah lepas dari potret masyarakat negeri ini.

Dalam bidang pendidikan 101 tahun hari kebangkitan nasional memiliki makna yang mendalam dimana 101 tahun yang lalu Budi Utomo membawakan setitik cahaya ditengah kegelapan bangsa ini yang terbodohkan akibat penjajahan yang begitu panjang oleh kaum penjajah, sejak saat itulah tekad untuk bangkit dari keterpurukan terhujam dalam jiwa setiap anak bangsa negeri ini. Hal tersebut merupakan salah satu gambaran bahwa pendidikan merupakan sektor yang sangat menentukan untuk menuju kebangkitan suatu bangsa dari keterpurukan akibat semua bentuk keterjajahan. Banyak contoh yang bisa kita jadikan cerminan dimana sektor pendidikan memiliki kontribusi besar dalam kebangkitan suatu bangsa, Negara Jepang dapat bangkit dari keterpurukan akibat di bom atom oleh sekutu, akhirnya bisa bangkit serta maju seperti saat ini. Salah satu penyebabnya adalah begitu perhatiannya pemimpin saat itu untuk mengutamakan sektor pendidikan sebagai Leading Sektor dalam usaha untuk membangkitkan sebuah bangsa dari keterpurukan.

Sektor pendidikan seolah luput dari perhatian para pemegang kebijakan di negeri ini, yang seharusnya mendapatkan perhatian yang baik dari para pemegang kebijakan di negeri ini. Dimulai dari anggaran pendidikan yang sampai saat ini belum sesuai dengan konstitusi, kesejahteraan guru yang belum terperhatikan, banyaknya angka putus sekolah, belum meratanya sarana dan prasarana yang menunjang, sulitnya pendidikan diakses secara merata oleh seluruh masyarakat hingga permasalahan seringkalinya kebijakan-kebijakan para pemimpin bangsa ini yang justru menjadikan terhambatnya perkembangan sektor pendidikan di negara ini.

Potret yang memprihatinkan yang telah digambarkan di atas bukan untuk mengarahkan pada sebuah pesimisme dari sebuah perjuangan, namun diharapkan bisa menjadi sebuah lecutan semangat untuk kita semua bahu membahu bangkit dari keterpurukan yang melanda negeri ini. Dari acara Seminar Nasional Pendidikan ini diharapkan bukan hanya menghasilkan terpaparkanya permasalahan yang terjadi pada sektor pendidikan namun dapat terhasilkannya sebuah solusi penyelesaian dari permasalahan-permasalahan yang ada, sehingga kita semua –Bangsa Indonesia- dapat memberikan sebuah kontribusi untuk menuju kebangkitan Indonesia dalam pendidikan.

LANDASAN KEGIATAN
Landasan Pemikiran
Tri Dharma Perguruan Tinggi
- Pendidikan
- Penelitian
- Pengabdian

Landasan Operasional
- PP Nomor 60 Tentang Perguruan Tinggi Negeri
- KepMenDikBud RI No.155 Tentang Pedoman Umum Organisasi Kemahasiswaan di Perguruan Tinggi
- UU No. 20 Tahun 2003 Tentang Sistem Pendidikan Nasional
- UU Guru dan Dosen
- GBPK HIMAS Periode 2008-2009
- Program Kerja HIMAS Periode 2008-2009

TUJUAN DAN TARGET KEGIATAN
TUJUAN
- Merefleksikan makna Kebangkitan Nasional dalam membangkitkan pendidikan nasional
- Mengetahui serta memahami permasalahan-permasalahan sektor pendidikan nasional
- Menyatukan persepsi dari elemen-elemen yang fokus terhadap permasalahan pendidikan untuk bersama-sama bergerak dalam mengontrol kebijakan-kebijakan pemerintah untuk sektor pendidikan
- Memberikan pemahaman kepada khalayak umum mengenai kebijakan pemerintah dalam hal implementasi anggaran pendidikan 20 %.

TARGET
- Terpaparkannya permasalahan-permasalahan faktual dalam sektor pendidikan nasional
- Dari pemaparan yang telah dilakukan peserta diharapkan memiliki penilaian terhadap kondisi sektor pendidikan nasional saat ini



NAMA KEGIATAN
SEMINAR NASIONAL PENDIDIKAN

TEMA KEGIATAN
Tema dari kegiatan ini adalah:
“Mengukir Kembali Makna Kebangkitan Nasional Dalam Pendidikan”

SASARAN KEGIATAN
- Mahasiswa UPI
- Guru se-Jawa Barat dan luar Jawa Barat
- Elemen-elemen pemerhati pendidikan

WAKTU DAN TEMPAT
Waktu : 14 Mei 2009
Tempat : Balai Pertemuan Umum (BPU) UPI

AGENDA ACARA SEMINAR NASIONAL
“Mengukir Kembali Makna Kebangkitan Nasional Dalam Pendidikan”
Kamis, 14 Mei 2009


Seminar Sessi Pertama
Tema : Kebangkitan Nasional Pendidikan
1. Makna Kebangkitan Nasional Bagi Pendidikan Indonesia: Sebuah Refleksi Terhadap Mutu Pendidikan
Pemateri : Asviwarman Adam (Peneliti LIPI)
2. Upaya Pemerintah Dalam Mengaktualisasikan Makna Kebangkitan Nasional dalam Pendidikan
Pemateri : Menteri Pendidikan Nasional*
3. Realitas Mutu Pendidikan Indonesia Dewasa ini
Pemateri : DR. Yudi Krisnandi ME (Anggota DPR RI)
Seminar Sessi Kedua
Tema : Implementasi Anggaran Pendidikan 20% antara Harapan dan Tantangan
1. Implementasi Anggaran Pendidikan 20% untuk Meningkatkan mutu Pendidikan
Pemateri :Dirjen Dikdasmen*
2. Inovasi Pembelajaran Sebagai Tuntutan Bagi Guru Terhadap Realisasi Anggaran Pendidikan 20%
Pemateri : Dr. Dadang Supardan, M.Pd.
3. Realitas Implementasi Anggaran Pendidikan 20% Antara Harapan dan Tuntutan
Pemateri : Suparman (Ketua FGII)

Biaya pendaptaran peserta:

Mahasiswa UPI Rp 50.000/orang
Mahasiswa luar UPI Rp 75.000/orang
Umum Rp 100.000/orang

KETERANGAN

1. Untuk pembayaran dapat dilakukan melalui :
BNI Cabang UPI
Jalan Dr. Setiabudi 229 Bandung 40154
No Rekening 0119283790 a.n Nuri Pramita Widya

2. Untuk informasi lebih lanjut dapat menghubungi
Sekretariat SEMINAR NASIONAL PENDIDIKAN
Gedung Olahraga (Gedor) UPI
Jl. Setiabudhi 229 Bandung 40154
Cp : 08172388986 (Deny) - 085659355663 (M. Sobar) – 085724062490 (Asep)
Facebook: rastulang@yahoo.com


Posted on 02:08 by ariwinata and filed under | 0 Comments »

Prambanan, the Most Beautiful Hindu Temple in the World

The Most Beautiful Hindu Temple in the World


Prambanan temple is extraordinarily beautiful building constructed in the tenth century during the reigns of two kings namely Rakai Pikatan and Rakai Balitung. Soaring up to 47 meters (5 meters higher than Borobudur temple), the foundation of this temple has fulfilled the desire of the founder to show Hindu triumph in Java Island. This temple is located 17 kilometers from the city center, among an area that now functions as beautiful park.

There is a legend that Javanese people always tell about this temple. As the story tells, there was a man named Bandung Bondowoso who loved Roro Jonggrang. To refuse his love, Jonggrang asked Bondowoso to make her a temple with 1,000 statues only in one-night time. The request was nearly fulfilled when Jonggrang asked the villagers to pound rice and to set a fire in order to look like morning had broken. Feeling to be cheated, Bondowoso who only completed 999 statues cursed Jonggrang to be the thousandth statue.

Prambanan temple has three main temples in the primary yard, namely Vishnu, Brahma, and Shiva temples. Those three temples are symbols of Trimurti in Hindu belief. All of them face to the east. Each main temple has accompanying temple facing to the west, namely Nandini for Shiva, Angsa for Brahma, and Garuda for Vishnu. Besides, there are 2 flank temples, 4 kelir temples and 4 corner temples. In the second area, there are 224 temples.

Entering Shiva temple, the highest temple and is located in the middle, you will find four rooms. One main room contains Shiva statue, while the other three rooms contain the statues of Durga (Shiva's wife), Agastya (Shiva's teacher), and Ganesha (Shiva's son). Durga statue is said to be the statue of Roro Jonggrang in the above legend.

In Vishnu temple, to the north of Shiva temple, you will find only one room with Vishnu statue in it. In Brahma temple, to the south of Shiva temple, you find only room as well with Brahma statue in it.

Quite attractive accompanying temple is Garuda temple that is located close to Vishnu temple. This temple keeps a story of half-bird human being named Garuda. Garuda is a mystical bird in Hindu mythology. The figure is of golden body, white face, red wings, with the beak and wings similar to eagle's. It is assumed that the figure is Hindu adaptation of Bennu (means 'rises' or 'shines') that is associated with the god of the Sun or Re in Old Egypt mythology or Phoenix in Old Greek mythology. Garuda succeeded in saving his mother from the curse of Aruna (Garuda's handicapped brother) by stealing Tirta Amerta (the sacred water of the gods).

Its ability to save her mother made many people admire it to the present time and it is used for various purposes. Indonesia uses the bird as the symbol of the country. Other country using the same symbol is Thailand, with the same reason but different form adaptation and appearance. In Thailand, Garuda is known as Krut or Pha Krut.

Prambanan also has panels of relief describing the story of Ramayana. Experts say that the relief is similar to the story of Ramayana that is told orally from generation to generation. Another interesting relief is Kalpataru tree that - in Hindu - the tree is considered tree of life, eternity and environment harmony. In Prambanan, relief of Kalpataru tree is described as flanking a lion. The presence of this tree makes experts consider that Javanese society in the ninth century had wisdom to manage its environment.

Just like Garuda, Kalpataru tree is also used for various purposes. In Indonesia, Kalpataru is used as the logo of Indonesian Environment Institution. Some intellectuals in Bali even develop "Tri Hita Karana" concept for environment conservation by seeing Kalpataru relief in this temple. This tree of life is also seen in the gunungan (the puppet used as an opening of traditional puppet show or wayang kulit). This proves that relief panels in Prambanan have been widely known throughout the world.

If you see the relief in detail, you will see many birds on them; they are real birds as we can see on the earth right now. Relief panels of such birds are so natural that biologists can identify their genus. One of them is the relief of the Yellow-Crest Parrot (Cacatua sulphurea) that cites unanswered question. The reason is that the bird only exists in Masakambing Island, an island in the middle of Java Sea. Then, did the bird exist in Yogyakarta? No body has succeeded in revealing the mystery.

You can discover many more things in Prambanan. You can see relief of Wiracarita Ramayana based on oral tradition. If you feel tired of enjoying the relief, you can take a rest in the beautiful garden in the complex. Since 18 September 2006, you can enter zone 1 area of Prambanan temple. The damage caused by the earthquake on 27 May 2006 is being reconstructed. Please come and enjoy Prambanan temple.

Posted on 01:55 by ariwinata and filed under | 0 Comments »

Beautiful of Borobudur Stupa, Java, Indonesia

Borobudur Stupa, Java, Indonesia

Sometime before the 5th century AD, the influence of Hinduism and Buddhism spread southward from the mainland of southeast Asia to the islands of Sumatra, Java, Bali and a few others in the archipelago currently called Indonesia. (It is misleading to think of all of Indonesia as either an ancient empire or the province of any particular religion. The vast archipelago of over 13,000 islands became the nation of Indonesia only in 1949 and only a few of its major islands were ever settled or much influenced by Hinduism, Buddhism or Islam).

There are no archaeological remains of temples in the Indianized states of Java prior to the end of the seventh century as the early Hindu structures were built of wood and have long since decayed in the moist tropic climate. The first stone temples, Shiva shrines constructed during the eighth century, are found high on the Dieng plateau, the name Dieng meaning 'the place of the gods'. The greatest concentration of Javanese sacred architecture, however, lies on the plain of Kedu, some 42 kilometers north-west of the present city of Yogyakarta. Here stands the beautiful Hindu temple complex of Prambanam and the world famous Hindu/Buddhist temple of Borobudur.

Borobudur, a name deriving from an expression meaning 'Mountain of accumulation of merits of the ten states of Bodhisattva' is commonly thought of as a Buddhist structure, yet its initial construction was planned and conducted by Hindu builders sometime around 775AD. The enormous first and second terraces were completed by a declining Hindu dynasty, construction was then halted for some years, and later, from 790 to 835 AD, the Buddhist Sailendra dynasty continued and finally completed the great stupa. The huge stone mass might have then been permanently abandoned, for it was difficult to adapt to the needs of Buddhism. However, leaving in evidence such an obvious manifestation of Hinduism was probably not deemed politically correct and thus the unfinished Shiva temple was transformed into the world's largest Buddhist stupa.

After 832 AD the Hindu dynasty of Sanjaya began to reunify central Java and soon reappropriated the Buddhist monuments built by the Sailendra. Although the Sanjaya were themselves Hindu, they ruled over a Buddhist majority and thus, while some Hindu modifications and ornamentations were done on Borobudur, the stupa remained a place of Buddhist use. During the 10th and 11th centuries there was a transfer of power from central Java to the east, and the great stupa fell into decline. For centuries the site lay forgotten, buried under layers of volcanic ash and jungle growth. In 1815 Europeans cleared the site, in the early 1900's the Dutch began its restoration, and a US$21 million project begun in 1973 completed the work.

The Borobudur stupa is a massive, symetrical monument, 200 square meters in size, sitting upon a low sculptured hill. The monument represents a Buddhist cosmological model of the universe organized around the axis of mythical Mt. Meru. Starting at the eastern gateway, pilgrims circumambulate the stupa, always in a clockwise direction. Walking through nearly five kilometers of open air corridors while ascending through six square terraces and three circular ones, the pilgrim symbolically spirals upward from the everyday world to the nirvanic state of absolute nothingness. The first six terraces are filled with richly decorated relief panels in which the sculptors have carved a textbook of Buddhist doctrines and a fascinating panorama of 9th century Javanese life. Upon the upper three terraces are 72 small stupas, each containing a statue of the Buddha (these statues are usually headless; relic hunters stole many of the heads, others are in museums). Crowning the entire structure is a great central stupa. Representing Nirvana, it is empty.

Posted on 01:41 by ariwinata and filed under | 0 Comments »

Bush The Killer Diagnosed as Crazy

Bush Diagnosed as Crazy
Comment by Larry Ross, January 1, 2006

Over 3 years ago, when this article was written, Bush was diagnosed as a dry alcoholic, with probably permanent damage to his brain cells and thinking processes due to at least 20 years of hard drinking.
All the symptoms of crazy, twisted thinking and refusal to consider constructive criticism of what he wants to do, are evidence of serious mental problems. With his spoilt but distant upbringing, he believes he is entitled to do as he pleases. This is reinforced by his born-again Christian Fundamentalism. He believes he was chosen by God to lead the United States; that he gets advice from God; and that what he does is both inspired and sanctioned by God. He does not accept criticisms of this doctrine.

Within this belief system, delusional though it may be, any lie and any crime is okay if it facilitates God's will. They are not really crimes. The U.S. Constitution and International law don't apply to Bush.(Bush's twisted and distorted reasoning is always interpreted as God's will and therefor divinely inspired his followers believe)

Remember that George Bush's God is a very angry and violent Old Testament God who demanded instant obedience and worship. He thought nothing of slaughtering his enemies on grounds that would be unacceptable today.

Bush, who follows this God, believes and does the same. The fact that he is still in office, is evidence that millions of Americans believe in the same God and belief systems. So Bush's crazy and potentially suicidal for humanity behaviour is "divinely sanctioned" some people think. That makes it okay, so they gave him a second term in 2004. (He got enough votes and was able to fake the rest).

What this shows is that many Americans can be quite comfortable with Bush and automatically forgive him his crimes, so long as their particular life is not too adversely affected. Their reality is only what happens to their own family, their pocket book, neighbourhood, sports, amusements,celebrities, etc. The mass media is mainly supportive of Bush lies, crimes and wars. They tell the people what to think and what not to think. That's what the people buy.

Even so, Bush's popularity has sunk to an all-time low. Americans are beginning to wake up, but not to the most frightening facts. The media is finding it more difficult to fool the public, distract them and cover-up for Bush. But his mental problems and deficiencies, extreme dangers to the world, and major crimes remain unexposed and not discussed. The mass media have ruled such topics out-of-bounds' so to speak.

Thus if another 9/11 (supposedly terrorist) event conveniently happens in 2006, most Americans will believe Bush's explanation, endlessly repeated by the mass media. His previous big lies to make war on Iraq, widely known, will be virtually forgotten.

A terrorist event would rescue Bush from the trash bin, facilitate his next war against Iran who he would blame (no proofs needed), and spur onward the neocon plan for global empire..

This article and others under Psychopathology of Bushism, present a comprehensive portrait of Bush's mental condition and symptoms.

I invite readers to circulate this and other articles as part of the effort to expose and stop Bush before it is too late.
Larry Ross
Posted on 01:30 by ariwinata and filed under | 0 Comments »

The Political Sutan Sjahrir (prime minister of Indonesia)


SUTAN SJAHRIR, THE SMILING DIPLOMAT

Sjahrir, son of a public prosecutor, received a Dutch education in Sumatra and Java and attended the Law Faculty at the University of Leiden. In The Netherlands he was a member of a socialist student group and secretary of the student group Perhimpunan Indonesia (“Indonesian Union”), which numbered among its members many of Indonesia’s future political leaders. He returned to the Dutch East Indies in 1931 and helped establish the Pendidikan Nasional Indonesia, a rival group to Partindo, the nationalist organization formed from remnants of the suppressed Partai Nasional Indonesia (“Indonesian Nationalist Party”), founded by Sukarno, the foremost Indonesian nationalist leader. The groups differed on the goals and means appropriate to nationalists, with Pendidikan opposed to Partindo’s concept of a united front of left-wing parties, and were divided by personal antagonisms as well.

Early in 1934 Sjahrir and Pendidikan’s coleader Mohammad Hatta were exiled by the Dutch authorities and remained isolated from Indonesian politics until the arrival of Japanese occupation forces in 1942. Sjahrir was opposed to the Japanese but chose to withdraw from public life rather than actively resist. He pressed for the country to declare independence before the Japanese surrender.

Sjahrir’s pamphlet “Perdjuangan Kita” (1945; “Our Struggle”) won for him the support of militant nationalists in the capital, as well as the office of prime minister in the postwar government at a time when executive power had been stripped from the president, then Sukarno, and given to the prime minister. That was done at Sjahrir’s instigation as he feared Sukarno’s cooperation with the Japanese would hurt the republic’s image in international opinion, on which the success of negotiations with the Dutch largely depended. Sjahrir negotiated the Linggadjati Agreement, under which the Dutch acknowledged Indonesia’s authority in Java and Sumatra.

His conciliatory policies were not in keeping with the temper of the times, however, and in February 1946 he had to resign briefly, and in June 1947 he was forced to resign permanently. He then became a member of the Indonesian delegation to the United Nations. In 1948 he formed a Socialist party, Partai Sosialis Indonesia (PSI), which opposed the Communist Party, but it failed to win popular support and was banned by Sukarno in 1960. On Jan. 17, 1962, Sjahrir was arrested on charges of conspiracy. He was held without trial until 1965, when he was allowed to travel to Switzerland for medical treatment following a stroke.
Posted on 01:14 by ariwinata and filed under | 0 Comments »

TAN MALAKA THE LEGEND MAN

GERILYAWAN REVOLUSIONER YANG LEGENDARIS

Tan Malaka –lengkapnya Ibrahim Datuk Tan Malaka—menurut keturunannya ia termasuk suku bangsa Minangkabau. Pada tanggal 2 Juni 1897 di desa Pandang Gadang –Sumatra Barat—Tan Malaka dilahirkan. Ia termasuk salah seorang tokoh bangsa yang sangat luar biasa, bahkan dapat dikatakan sejajar dengan tokoh-tokoh nasional yang membawa bangsa Indonesia sampai saat kemerdekaan seperti Soekarno, Hatta, Syahrir, Moh.Yamin dan lain-lain.

Pejuang yang militan, radikal dan revolusioner ini telah banyak melahirkan pemikiran-pemikiran yang orisinil, berbobot dan brilian hingga berperan besar dalam sejarah perjaungan kemerdekaan Indonesia. Dengan perjuangan yang gigih maka ia mendapat julukan tokoh revolusioner yang legendaris. Pada tahun 1921 Tan Malaka telah terjun ke dalam gelanggang politik. Dengan semangat yang berkobar dari sebuah gubuk miskin, Tan Malaka banyak mengumpulkan pemuda-pemuda komunis.Pemuda cerdas ini banyak juga berdiskusi dengan Semaun (wakil ISDV) mengenai pergerakan revolusioner dalam pemerintahan Hindia Belanda. Selain itu juga merencanakan suatu pengorganisasian dalam bentuk pendidikan bagi anggota-anggota PKI dan SI (Syarekat Islam) untuk menyusun suatu sistem tentang kursus-kursus kader serta ajaran-ajaran komunis, gerakan-gerakan aksi komunis, keahlian berbicara, jurnalistik dan keahlian memimpin rakyat. Namun pemerintahan Belanda melarang pembentukan kursus- kursus semacam itu sehingga mengambil tindakan tegas bagi pesertanya.

Melihat hal itu Tan Malaka mempunyai niat untuk mendirikan sekolah-sekolah sebagai anak-anak anggota SI untuk penciptaan kader-kader baru. Juga dengan alasan pertama: memberi banyak jalan (kepada para murid) untuk mendapatkan mata pencaharian di dunia kapitalis (berhitung, menulis, membaca, ilmu bumi, bahasa Belanda, Melayu, Jawa dan lain-lain); kedua,
memberikan kebebasan kepada murid untuk mengikuti kegemaran (hobby) mereka dalam bentuk perkumpulan-perkumpulan; ketiga, untuk memperbaiki nasib kaum kromo (lemah/miskin). Untuk mendirikan sekolah itu, ruang rapat SI Semarang diubah menjadi sekolah, dan sekolah itu bertumbuh sangat cepat hingga sekolah itu semakin lama semakin besar.

Perjuangan Tan Malaka tidaklah hanya sebatas pada usaha mencerdaskan rakyat Indonesia pada saat itu, tapi juga pada gerakan-gerakan dalam melawan ketidakadilan seperti yang dilakukan para buruh terhadap pemerintahan Hindia Belanda lewat VSTP dan aksi-aksi pemogokan, disertai selebaran-selebaran sebagai alat propaganda yang ditujukan kepada rakyat agar rakyat dapat melihat adanya ketidakadilan yang diterima oleh kaum buruh.

Seperti dikatakan Tan Malaka pada apidatonya di depan para buruh “Semua gerakan buruh untuk mengeluarkan suatu pemogokan umum sebagai pernyataan simpati, apabila nanti menglami kegagalan maka pegawai yang akan diberhentikan akan didorongnya untuk berjuang dengan gigih dalam pergerakan revolusioner”. Pergulatan Tan Malaka dengan partai komunis di dunia sangatlah jelas. Ia tidak hanya mempunyai hak untuk memberi usul-usul dan dan mengadakan kritik tetapi juga hak untuk mengucapkan vetonya atas aksi-aksi yang dilakukan partai komunis di daerah kerjanya. Tan Malaka juga harus mengadakan pengawasan supaya anggaran dasar, program dan taktik dari Komintern (Komunis Internasional) dan Profintern seperti yang telah ditentukan di kongres-kongres Moskow diikuti oleh kaum komunis dunia.

Dengan demikian tanggung-jawabnya sebagai wakil Komintern lebih berat dari keanggotaannya di PKI. Sebagai seorang pemimpin yang masih sangat muda ia meletakkan tanggung jawab yang saangat berat pada pundaknya. Tan Malaka dan sebagian kawan-kawannyamemisahkan diri dan kemudian memutuskan hubungan dengan PKI, Sardjono-Alimin-Musso. Pemberontakan 1926 yang direkayasa dari Keputusan Prambanan yang berakibat bunuh diri bagi perjuangan nasional rakyat Indonesia melawan penjajah waktu itu.

Pemberontakan 1926 hanya merupakan gejolak kerusuhan dan keributan kecil di beberapa daerah di Indonesia. Maka dengan mudah dalam waktu singkat pihak penjajah Belanda dapat mengakhirinya. Akibatnya ribuan pejuang politik ditangkap dan ditahan. Ada yang disiksa, ada yang dibunuh dan banyak yang dibuang ke Boven Digul Irian Jaya. Peristiwa ini dijadikan dalih oleh Belanda untuk menangkap, menahan dan membuang setiap orang yang melawan mereka, sekalipun bukan PKI. Maka perjaungan nasional mendapat pukulan yang sangat berat dan mengalami kemunduran besar serta lumpuh selama bertahun-tahun.

Tan Malaka yang berada di luar negeri pada waktu itu,berkumpul dengan beberapa temannya di Bangkok. Di ibukota Thailand itu, bersama Soebakat dan Djamaludddin Tamin, Juni 1927 Tan Malaka memproklamasikan berdirinya Partai Republik Indonesia (PARI). Dua tahun sebelumnya Tan Malaka telah menulis “Menuju Republik Indonesia”. Itu ditunjukkan kepada para pejuang intelektual di Indonesia dan di negeri Belanda. Terbitnya buku itu pertama kali di Kowloon, Cina, April 1925. Prof. Moh. Yamin sejarawan dan pakar hukum kenamaan kita, dalam karya tulisnya “Tan Malaka Bapak Republik Indonesia” memberi komentar: “Tak ubahnya daripada Jefferson Washington merancangkan Republik Amerika Serikat sebelum kemerdekaannya tercapai atau Rizal Bonifacio meramalkan Philippina sebelum revolusi Philippina pecah….”

Ciri khas gagasan Tan Malaka adalah: (1) Dibentuk dengan cara berpikir ilmiah berdasarkan ilmu bukti, (2) Bersifat Indonesia sentris, (3) Futuristik dan (4) Mandiri, konsekwen serta konsisten. Tan Malaka menuangkan gagasan-gagasannya ke dalam sekitar 27 buku, brosur dan ratusan artikel di berbagai surat kabar terbitan Hindia Belanda. Karya besarnya “MADILOG” mengajak dan memperkenalkan kepada bangsa Indonesia cara berpikir ilmiah bukan berpikir secara kaji atau hafalan, bukan secara “Text book thinking”, atau bukan dogmatis dan bukan doktriner. Madilog merupakan istilah baru dalam cara berpikir, dengan menghubungkan ilmu bukti serta mengembangkan dengan jalan dan metode yang sesuai dengan akar dan urat kebudayaan Indonesia sebagai bagian dari kebudayaan dunia. Bukti adalah fakta dan fakta adalah lantainya ilmu bukti. Bagi filsafat, idealisme yang pokok dan pertama adalah budi (mind), kesatuan, pikiran dan penginderaan. Filsafat materialisme menganggap alam, benda dan realita nyata obyektif sekeliling sebagai yang ada, yang pokok dan yang pertama.

Bagi Madilog (Materialisme, Dialektika, Logika) yang pokok dan pertama adalah bukti, walau belum dapat diterangkan secara rasional dan logika tapi jika fakta sebagai landasan ilmu bukti itu ada secara konkrit, sekalipun ilmu pengetahuan secara rasional belum dapat enjelaskannya dan belum dapat menjawab apa, mengapa dan bagaimana. Semua karya Tan Malaka danpermasalahannya dimulai dengan Indonesia. Konkritnya rakyat Indonesia, situasi dan kondisi nusantara serta kebudayaan, sejarah lalu diakhiri dengan bagaimana mengarahkan pemecahan masalahnya.

Cara tradisi nyata bangsa Indonesia dengan latar belakang sejarahnya bukanlah cara berpikir yang “text book thinking” dan untuk mencapai Republik Indonesia sudah dicetuskan sejak tahun 1925 lewat “Naar de Republiek Indonesia”. Jika kita membaca karya-karya Tan Malaka yang meliputi semua bidang kemasyarakatan, kenegaraan, politik,ekonomi, sosial, kebudayaan sampai kemiliteran(“Gerpolek”-Gerilya-Politik dan Ekonomi, 1948), maka akan kita temukan benang putih keilmiahan dan keIndonesiaan serta benang merah kemandirian, sikap konsekwen dan konsisten yang direnda jelas dalam gagasan-gagasan serta perjuangan implementasinya.Peristiwa 3 Juli 1946 yang didahului dengan penangkapan dan penahanan Tan Malaka bersama pimpinan Persatuan Perjuangan, di dalam penjara tanpa pernah diadili selama dua setengah tahun.

Setelah meletus pemberontakan FDR/PKI di Madiun, September 1948 dengan pimpinan Musso dan Amir Syarifuddin, Tan Malaka dikeluarkan begitu saja dari penjara akibat peristiwa itu. Di luar, setelah mengevaluasi situasi yang amat parah bagi republik Indonesia akibat Perjanjian Linggarjati 1947 dan Renville 1948, yang merupakan buah dari hasil diplomasi Syahrir dan Perdana Menteri AmirSyarifuddin, Tan Malaka merintis pembentukan Partai MURBA, 7 November 1948 di Yogyakarta. Dan pada tahun 1949 tepatnya bulan Februari Tan Malaka gugur, hilang tak tentu rimbanya, mati tak tentu kuburnya ditengah-tengah perjuangan “Gerilya Pembela Proklamasi” di Pethok, Kediri, Jawa Timur. Namun berdasarkan keputusan Presiden RI No. 53, yang ditandatangani Presiden Sukarno 28 Maret 1963 menetapkan bahwa Tan Malaka adalah seorang pahlawan kemerdekaan Nasional. (Bek)
BERGELAP-GELAPLAH DALAM TERANG, BERTERANG-TERANGLAH DALAM GELAP ! (TAN MALAKA)

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Tan Malaka (1922) Communism and Pan-Islamism


This is a speech made by the Indonesian Marxist Tan Malaka at the Fourth Congress of the Communist International in November 12, 1922. Taking issue with the theses drafted by Lenin and adopted at the Second Congress, which had emphasised the need for a "struggle against Pan-Islamism", Tan Malaka argued for a more positive approach. Tan Malaka (1897-1949) was elected chairman of the Communist Party of Indonesia in 1921, but the following year he was forced to leave the East Indies by the colonial authorities. After the proclamation of independence in August 1945, he returned to Indonesia to participate in the struggle against Dutch colonialism. He became a leader of the Partai Murba (Proletarian Party), formed in 1948 to organise working class opposition to the Soekarno government. In February 1949 Tan Malaka was captured by the Indonesian army and executed.


Comrades! After hearing the speeches made by General Zinoviev, General Radek and other European comrades, and having regard to the importance, for us in the East as well, of the question of the united front, I think that I have to speak up, in the name of the Communist Party of Java, for the thousands of millions of the oppressed peoples of the East.

I have to put a few questions to the two generals. Perhaps General Zinoviev was not thinking about a united front on Java; perhaps our united front is something different. But the decision of the Second Congress of the Communist International means in practice that we have got to form a united front with revolutionary nationalism. Given, as we must recognise, that forming a united front is necessary in our country too, our united front cannot be with Social Democrats but has to be with revolutionary nationalists. But tactics used by the nationalists against imperialism very often differ from ours; take, for instance, the boycott and the Muslim liberation struggle, Pan-Islamism. These are the two forms which I am particularly considering, so I ask the following questions. First, are we to support the national boycott movement or not? Second, are we to support Pan-Islamism, yes or no? If yes, how far are we to go?

The boycott, I must admit, is certainly not a Communist method, but it is one of the sharpest weapons available in the situation of politico-military subjugation in the East. Within the last two years we have seen the success of the Egyptian people's 1919 boycott against British imperialism, and again of the great Chinese boycott at the end of 1919 and the beginning of 1920. The most recent boycott movement has been in British India. We can take it that in the next few years other forms of boycott will be employed in the East. We know that it is not our method; it is a petty bourgeois method, something that belongs to the nationalist bourgeoisie. We can say more; that the boycott means support for home-grown capitalism; but we have also seen that following on the boycott movement in British India, there are now eighteen hundred leaders languishing in jail, that the boycott has generated a very revolutionary atmosphere, indeed that the boycott movement actually forced the British government to ask Japan for military assistance, in case it should develop into an armed uprising. We also know that the Mahommedan leaders in India - Dr. Kirchief, Hasret Mahoni and the Ali brothers - are in reality nationalists; we had no rising to record when Gandhi was arrested. But people in India know very well what every revolutionary there knows: that a local rising can only end in defeat, because we have no weapons or other military material there, hence the question of the boycott movement will, now or in the future, become a pressing one for us Communists. Both in India and in Java we are aware that many Communists are inclined to proclaim a boycott movement on Java, perhaps because Communist ideas emanating from Russia have been so long forgotten, or perhaps because there was such an unleashing of Communist feeling in British India as could challenge the whole movement. In any case we are faced with the question: Are we to support this tactic, yes or no? And how far can we go?

Pan-Islamism is a long story. First of all I will speak about our experiences in the East Indies where we have cooperated with the Islamists. We have in Java a very large organisation with many very poor peasants, the Sarekat Islam (Islamic League). Between 1912 and 1916 this organisation had one million members, perhaps as many as three or four million. It was a very large popular movement, which arose spontaneously and was very revolutionary.

Until 1921 we collaborated with it. Our party, consisting of 13,000 members, went into this popular movement and carried out propaganda there. In 1921 we succeeded in getting Sarekat Islam to adopt our programme. The Islamic League too agitated in the villages for control of the factories and for the slogan: All power to the poor peasants, all power to the proletarians! So Sarekat Islam made the same propaganda as our Communist Party, only sometimes under another name.

But in 1921 a split occurred as a result of clumsy criticism of the leadership of Sarekat Islam. The government through its agents in Sarekat Islam exploited this split, and it also exploited the decision of the Second Congress of the Communist International: Struggle against Pan-Islamism! What did they say to the simple peasants? They said: See, the Communists not only want to split, they want to destroy your religion! That was too much for a simple Muslim peasant. The peasant thought to himself: I have lost everything in this world, must I lose my heaven as well? That won’t do! This was how the simple Muslims thought. The propagandists among the government agents exploited this very successfully. So we had a split. [Chairman: Your time is up.]

I have come from the East Indies, and travelled for forty days. [Applause.]
The Sarekat-Islamists believe in our propaganda and remain with us in their stomachs, to use a popular expression, but in their hearts they remain with the Sarekat Islam, with their heaven. For heaven is something we cannot give them. Therefore, they boycotted our meetings and we could not carry on propaganda any more.
Since the beginning of last year we have worked towards re-establishing the link with Sarekat Islam. At our congress in December last year we said that the Muslims in the Caucasus and other countries, who cooperate with the Soviets and struggle against international capitalism, understand their religion better, and we also said that, if they want to make propaganda for their religion, they can do so, though they should not do it in meetings but in the mosques.

We have been asked at public meetings: Are you Muslims – yes or no? Do you believe in God – yes or no? How did we answer this? Yes, I said, when I stand before God I am a Muslim, but when I stand before men I am not a Muslim [loud applause], because God said there are many devils among men! [Loud applause.] Thus we inflicted a defeat on their leaders with the Qur’an in our hands, and at our congress last year we compelled the leaders of the Sarekat Islam, through their own members, to cooperate with us.

When a general strike broke out in March last year, the Muslim workers needed us, as we have the railwaymen under our leadership. The Sarekat Islam leaders said: You want to cooperate with us, so you must help us, too. Of course we went to them, and said: Yes, your God is powerful, but he has said that on this earth the railwaymen are more powerful! [Loud applause.] The railwaymen are God’s executive committee in this world. [Laughter.]

But this does not settle the question, and if we have another split we may be sure that the government agents will be there again with their Pan-Islamism. So the question of Pan-Islamism is a very immediate one.

But now one must first understand what the word Pan-Islamism really means. Once, it had a historical significance and meant that Islam must conquer the whole world, sword in hand, and that this must take place under the leadership of the Caliph, and the Caliph must be of Arabian origin. About 400 years after the death of Mohammed the Muslims split into three great states and thus the Holy War lost its significance for the entire Muslim world. It thus lost the meaning that, in the name of God, the Caliph and the Muslim religion should conquer the whole world, because the Caliph of Spain said, I am the true Caliph, I must carry the banner, and the Caliph of Egypt said the same, and the Caliph of Baghdad said, I am the real Caliph, since I am from the Arabian tribe of Quraish.

So Pan-Islamism no longer has its original meaning, but now has in practice an entirely different meaning. Today, Pan-Islamism signifies the national liberation struggle, because for the Muslims Islam is everything: not only religion, but also the state, the economy, food, and everything else. And so Pan-Islamism now means the brotherhood of all Muslim peoples, and the liberation struggle not only of the Arab but also of the Indian, the Javanese and all the oppressed Muslim peoples. This brotherhood means the practical liberation struggle not only against Dutch but also against English, French and Italian capitalism, therefore against world capitalism as a whole. That is what Pan-Islamism now means in Indonesia among the oppressed colonial peoples, according to their secret propaganda – the liberation struggle against the different imperialist powers of the world.

This is a new task for us. Just as we want to support the national struggle, we also want to support the liberation struggle of the very combative, very active 250 million Muslims living under the imperialist powers. Therefore I ask once again: Should we support Pan-Islamism, in this sense?
So I end my speech. (Lively applause).

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Mao Zedong Dictator in Chinese




Mao Zedong (1893-1976)
Chinese political leader, poet and statesman, founder of People's Republic of China. Mao Zedong's ideas varied between flexible pragmatism and utopian visions, exemplified in the Great Leap Forward and the Cultural Revolution.His literary production contains mainly speeches, essays and poems. Mao published some 40 poems written in classical tradition with political message.



As a poet Mao continued the tradition, in which educated people composed poetry simply as an accomplishment. His texts showed talent, and he did not use the most banal idioms familiar from the works of Communist writers of his own generation. However, it is possible that Mao did not write all the texts credited to him. In his early works, Mao showed the influence of Tang (618-907) and Sung (960-1127) poets. On his walk across the Middle Kingdom, he recorded its modern history and used the mystical past to to illuminate the present. In several poems he depicted the first battles of the peasant army and national events. After 1949 the poems became more meditative.
Worshiped by millions, Mao is also considered one of the 20th century most brutal dictators. It has been estimated that he was responsile for well over 70 million deaths.

Mao was born in the village of Shaoshan in the Hunan Province of China. At the age of six he began to work on his parents' farm. His father, Mao Jen-sheng, was a peasant farmer, who beat his sons regularly. Mao's mother, Wen Chi-mei, was a devout Buddhist. After graduating from a teacher's training in Changsha, Mao continued his studies at the University of Beijing, where he worked as an assistant at the library. Under the influence of Li Dazhao and Chen Duxiu, China's first major Marxist figures, Mao turned to Marxism. In 1921 Mao became a founding member of the Chinese Communist Party. During Bertrand Russell's visit to Hunan, he argued for the legitimacy of seizing power by force against Russell's reformist views. In the 1920s he concentrated on political work in his native Province and Jianxi Province. His highly pragmatic strategy was one of the main influences on Fidel Castro, when in 1959 he was able to take over Cuba with Che Guevara.



"The people are like water and the army is like fish," Mao wrote in Aspects of China's Anti-Japanese Struggle (1948). He recognized the revolutionary potential of the peasantry. Marx and Lenin had seen in their urban doctrine the working class as the leading revolutionary force. However, when first articulated, Mao's views were rejected by the Party in favor of orthodox policy. Mao himself was also an exception to the rule: he was one of only three peasants to gain control of his country throughout its long history - the others were the founders of the Han and Ming dynasties.

Under Comitern policy of cooperating with the Nationalists, Mao held important posts with the Guomingdang. Following the Guomindang massacre of Communist in 1927, Mao established a base in Jiangxi Province. There he directed his first major purge against dissidents.

Mao's fourth wife Chiang Ch'ing (1914-1991) was an actor. She gained first fame in Shanghai among others in Ibsen's play A Doll's House. In 1933 she joined the Communist Party, meeting Mao in Yenan and marrying him. Mao was more than twenty years older than she and had eight children. During Cultural Revolution she became an enormous force, but after Mao's death she was imprisoned with her three radical associates Wang Hongwen, Zhang Chunqiao and Yao Wenyuan. The group was called the Gang of Four. It is told, that on the day of their arrest every wine shop in Beijing was sold out of alcohol. Chiang Ch'ing committed suicide in 1991.

After the break with the Nationalist Party, Mao started the guerrilla tactics, stating later that "political power grows out of the barrel of a gun." In 1934 the Nationalist government destroyed the Jiangxi Soviet, and the Communist forces started the legendary retreat and the Long March, an anabasis of 6,000 miles which has been compared to the march of Alexander the Great. In 1935 Mao's political power increased when he was elected Chairman of the Politburo. Mao's rural based guerrilla warfare led to the fall of the government. To fund the Red Army, Mao grew opium.
During World War II Mao did not fight the Japanese, but planned to divide China with Japan. The new People's Republic of China was proclaimed in 1949. The Communists were headed by Mao, who gained the upper hand over his Russian-backed adversaries. In 1949 Mao met Stalin, but after Nikita Khrushchev in his famous speech denounced Stalinism in 1956, China broke with Moscow. Stalin held Mao's son Anying hostage for for years. The "thaw" period in the Soviet Union (1955-64) was noted also in China and in 1956 Mao launched the slogan "let a hundred flowers bloom".

Mao's prestige was reinforced by his "Thought." He labelled the ideas of his opponents as "mechanical" or "dogmatic." "Be resourceful, look at all sides of a problem, test ideas by experiment, and work hard for the common good," Mao said. The basis of his ideology was Marxism-Leninism, but he adapted it to Chinese conditions, and partly he followed such CCP's theoreticians as Chen Boda and Ai Siqi. The support of the Communists among intellectuals also was rising. Zhang Dongsun, who was the most perceptive philosopher of the modern China, saw that Communists were China's only practical way out.

In his 'Talks at the Yan'an Forum on Literature and Art' (1942, Tsai Yenan wen-i tso-t'an hui shang it chiang-hua) Mao issued a set of perspective guidelines for literature, in which he emphasized the status folk tradition and oral and performing literature. The novel of land reform were followed by novels on agricultural collectivization, the central theme of art at that time. Novelists also praised the Party, the revolution, and the people. Some writers dealt with the heroism of soldiers during the Korean war. In 1958 Mao started the "Great Leap Forward", industrial and agricultural program, which did not have the success he expected. He urged to construct backyard steel furnaces to gain the Western steel production. This unrealistic project was not without a certain good will, although results were tragic: about 30 million people died in the famine, when ill-trained peasants were forced to carry out the gigantic industrialization plan.

Following the disaster of the "Great Leap Forward", a new series of novels on communization appeared by authors with peasant backgrounds, among them Liu Quing and Hao Ran. The reading public was more drawn to a wave of historical novels celebrating the history of the communist revolution. Most notable were Luo Guangbin's and Yang Yiyan's works. Nevertheless, none of the new novels of socialist realism proved sufficiently politically correct to survive the censorship during the power struggle of the Great Proletarian Cultural Revolution.

By 1965 Mao feared that he was losing control. He appealed to the populace against the Party apparatus and consolidated again his power by the Cultural Revolution. Red Guards were formed in 1966 and sent into the countryside to force bureaucrats, professors, technicians, intellectuals, and other nonpeasants into rural work. In the vengeful outburst of hatred and ignorance, tens of thousands were murdered or forced to give up their jobs, and China's economy suffered. "A revolution is not the same as inviting people to dinner, or writing as essay, or painting a picture... A revolution is an insurrection, an act of violence by which one class overthrows another." Mao had said (from Selected Works of Mao Tse-tung, 1965) The publishing of new books and the introduction of new ideas virtually stopped. Except for the works of the deceased Lu Xun, all modern works were banned. From 1966 for the following six years publication of art journals was suspended. Art schools were closed and artists disbanded. Large numbers of old temples and monuments were smashed or vandalized. In the end, the disorder was so bad that the army was called in to repress the Red Guards and other fractions. After the chaos, Mao decided open doors to the West. China's Relationship with the United States were strained, but in 1972 President Richard Nixon journeyed to China, and broke the ice. All practical negotiations were handled by Zhou Enlai and Henry Kissinger; at the meeting with Nixon, Mao kept the discussion on a fairly abstract level.

According to Mao's personal physician Zhisui Li (in The Private Life of Chairman Mao), the leader of China used heavily barbiturates although otherwise he was in excellent health. Later in life Mao developed paranoia; Li Zhisui mentions also Mao's aversion to bathing. His personal life became secretive and in many ways morally corrupt. Lin Biao, who was designated by Mao as his successor, died under mysterious circumstances in 1969. After Lin's fall, the prime minister Zhou Enlai was a moderator between the opposing camps of Liu Shaoqi and Mao. Zhou died in 1975, and the leadership of the moderates was taken over by Deng Xiaoping. Mao's death in 1976 broke his wife's hold on power. Mao had smoked cigarettes his whole life, and he had also suffered from bronchitis, pneumonia, and emphysema. Aaccording to some sources, Mao's last words were: "I feel ill; call the doctors."
Mao's ”The Little red Book” or Mao Zedong on People's War (1967) became in the 1960s the ultimate authority for political correctness. It was carried about by millions during "Great Proletarian Cultural Revolution" of 1968. The plastic-bound work, edited by the minister of defense, Lin Piao, consisted of quotations from several Mao's writings, among them Significance of Agrarian Reforms in China, Strategic Problems of China's Revolutionary War, On the Rectification of Incorrect Ideas in the Party, A Single Spark Can Start a Prairie Fire, On the Correct Handling of Contradictions Among the People. Another compendium, also edited by Lin Piao, was entitled Long Live Mao Tse-Tung Thought.

Mao's conception of democracy was based on the leading role of the Communist party. Its the tightly disciplined organization would lead the masses. He was hostile to Confucianism, which he saw as the central ideology of China's past. Later in his career "The Great Helmsman" compared himself with Chin Shih-huang, the first Emperor, who unified China in 221 B.C.

For the most part, Mao's own philosophical work in the 1930s was summaries of Soviet texts. Two essays, 'On practice' and 'On contradiction' were printed in revised form in 1950 and 1952. These works were studied and emulated throughout China. Like Lenin, Mao made a distinction between antagonist and non-antagonist contradictions, but Mao's thought was partly derived from the Chinese system of yin and yang. He stated that contradictions would continue to arise in society even after socialist revolution. With this claim he supported his doctrine of permanent revolution, which was earlier launched by Trotsky. His success in guerrilla warfare led him to declare in 1947, that "the atom bomb is a paper tiger".

Mao's thoughts were also popular among Western intellectuals and radicals, who opposed "Soviet revisionism." American journalist E.P. Snow made Chinese Communist movement known already in the 1930s with his book Red Star Over China (1937). Snow's personal relationships with the leaders of China continued decades. He was granted permission travel in 1960 around the country. In his book The Other Side of the River Snow failed to report of China's 1959-61 famine, possibly the worst in history. Much of the grain which was produced in China during this period was traded for the Soviet weapons-technology. However, Mao's popularity has been enduring even after his death.

For further reading: Mao: The Unknown Story by Jung Chang and Jon Halliday (2005); Chinese Marxism by Adrian Chan (2003); Children's Literature in China: From Lu Xun to Mao Zedong by Mary Ann Farquhar (1999); Mao Zedong by Jonathan D. Spence (1999); China's Road to Disaster by Frederick C. Teiwes and Warren Sun (1998); The 100 Most Influential Books Ever Written by Martin Seymour-Smith (1998); Battling Western Imperialism: Mao, Stalin, and the United States by Michael M. Sheng (1998); Hungry Ghosts: Mao's Secret Famine by Jasper Becker (1997); The Private Life of Chairman Mao by Zhisui Li (1996, paperback); Mao Zedong by Rebecca Stefoff (1996, for young adults); No Tears for Mao by Niu-Niu et al (1995); Burying Mao by Richard Baum (1994); China Without Mao by Immanuel C.Y. Hsu (1990); The Thought of Mao Tse-Tung by Stuart Schram (1989, paperback); Inheriting Tradition by K. Louie (1986); Marxism, Maoism, and Utopianism by Maurice J. Meisner (1982); Chinese Thought, From Confucius to Mao Ts-E-Tung by Herrlee Glessner Glee (1971, paperback); Red Star over China by E.P. Snow (1937, rev. ed. 1968) - See also: Mao Tun - Suom.: Maolta on julkaistu runosuomennoksia antologiassa Itä on punainen. Muita käännöksiä: Mao Tse-tung; Runot (suom. Pertti Nieminen), essee- ja puhekokoelma Teoksia 1-2, Otteita puhemies Mao Tse-tungin teoksista, ”Punainen kirja” (1967)
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Soekarno Best Presiden (Big Man From Big Nation)


Soekarno dilahirkan dengan nama Kusno Sosrodihardjo. Ayahnya bernama Raden Sukemi Sosrodihardjo, seorang guru di Surabaya, Jawa. Ibunya berasal dari Bali.

Ketika kecil Soekarno tinggal bersama kakeknya di Tulungagung, Jawa Timur. Pada usia 14 tahun, seorang kawan bapaknya yang bernama Oemar Said Tjokroaminoto mengajak Soekarno tinggal di Surabaya dan disekolahkan ke Hoogere Burger School (H.B.S.) di sana sambil mengaji di tempat Tjokroaminoto. Di Surabaya, Soekarno banyak bertemu dengan para pemimpin Sarekat Islam, organisasi yang dipimpin Tjokroaminoto saat itu. Soekarno kemudian bergabung dengan organisasi Jong Java (Pemuda Jawa).

Tamat H.B.S. tahun 1920, Soekarno melanjutkan ke Technische Hoge School (sekarang ITB) di Bandung, dan tamat pada tahun 1925. Saat di Bandung, Soekarno berinteraksi dengan Tjipto Mangunkusumo dan Dr. Douwes Dekker, yang saat itu merupakan pemimpin organisasi National Indische Partij.

Pergerakan dan Semangat Nasionalisme
Pada tahun 1926, Soekarno mendirikan Algemene Studie Club di Bandung. Organisasi ini menjadi cikal bakal Partai Nasional Indonesia yang didirikan pada tahun 1927. Aktivitas Soekarno di PNI menyebabkannya ditangkap Belanda pada bulan Desember 1929, dan memunculkan pledoinya yang fenomenal: Indonesia Menggugat, hingga dibebaskan kembali pada tanggal 31 Desember 1931.

Pada bulan Juli 1932, Soekarno bergabung dengan Partai Indonesia (Partindo), yang merupakan pecahan dari PNI. Soekarno kembali ditangkap pada bulan Agustus 1933, dan diasingkan ke Flores. Di sini, Soekarno hampir dilupakan oleh tokoh-tokoh nasional. Namun semangatnya tetap membara seperti tersirat dalam setiap suratnya kepada seorang Guru Persatuan Islam bernama Ahmad Hassan. Soekarno baru kembali bebas pada masa penjajahan Jepang pada tahun 1942.

Pada awal masa penjajahan Jepang (1942-1945), pemerintah Jepang sempat tidak memperhatikan tokoh-tokoh pergerakan Indonesia terutama untuk “mengamankan” keberadaannya di Indonesia. Ini terlihat pada Gerakan 3A dengan tokohnya Shimizu dan Mr. Syamsuddin yang kurang begitu populer.

Namun akhirnya, pemerintahan pendudukan Jepang memperhatikan dan sekaligus memanfaatkan tokoh tokoh Indonesia seperti Soekarno, Mohammad Hatta dan lain-lain dalam setiap organisasi-organisasi dan lembaga lembaga untuk menarik hati penduduk Indonesia. Disebutkan dalam berbagai organisasi seperti Jawa Hookokai, Pusat Tenaga Rakyat (Putera), BPUPKI dan PPKI, tokoh tokoh seperti Soekarno, Hatta, Ki Hajar Dewantara, K.H Mas Mansyur dan lain lainnya disebut-sebut dan terlihat begitu aktif. Dan akhirnya tokoh-tokoh nasional bekerjasama dengan pemerintah pendudukan Jepang untuk mencapai kemerdekaan Indonesia, meski ada pula yang melakukan gerakan bawah tanah seperti Sutan Syahrir dan Amir Sjarifuddin karena menganggap Jepang adalah fasis yang berbahaya.

Presiden Soekarno sendiri, saat pidato pembukaan menjelang pembacaan teks proklamasi kemerdekaan, mengatakan bahwa meski sebenarnya kita bekerjasama dengan Jepang sebenarnya kita percaya dan yakin serta mengandalkan kekuatan sendiri.

Masa-Masa Kemerdekaan
Ia aktif dalam usaha persiapan kemerdekaan Indonesia, diantaranya adalah merumuskan Pancasila, UUD 1945 dan dasar dasar pemerintahan Indonesia termasuk merumuskan naskah proklamasi Kemerdekaan. Ia sempat dibujuk untuk menyingkir ke Rengasdengklok Peristiwa Rengasdengklok.

Pada tahun 1943, Perdana Menteri Jepang Hideki Tojo mengundang tokoh Indonesia yakni Soekarno, Mohammad Hatta dan Ki Bagoes Hadikoesoemo ke Jepang dan diterima langsung oleh Kaisar Hirohito. Bahkan kaisar memberikan Bintang kekaisaran (Ratna Suci) kepada tiga tokoh Indonesia tersebut. Penganugerahan Bintang itu membuat pemerintahan pendudukan Jepang terkejut, karena hal itu berarti bahwa ketiga tokoh Indonesia itu dianggap keluarga Kaisar Jepang sendiri. Pada bulan Agustus 1945, ia diundang oleh Marsekal Terauchi, pimpinan Angkatan Darat wilayah Asia Tenggara di Dalat Vietnam yang kemudian menyatakan bahwa proklamasi kemerdekaan Indonesia adalah urusan rakyat Indonesia sendiri.

Soekarno bersama tokoh-tokoh nasional mulai mempersiapkan diri menjelang Proklamasi kemerdekaan Republik Indonesia. Setelah sidang Badan Penyelidik Usaha Persiapan Kemerdekaan Indonesia BPUPKI,Panitia Kecil yang terdiri dari delapan orang (resmi), Panitia Kecil yang terdiri dari sembilan orang/Panitia Sembilan (yang menghasilkan Piagam Jakarta) dan Panitia Persiapan Kemerdekaan Indonesia PPKI, Soekarno-Hatta mendirikan Negara Indonesia berdasarkan Pancasila dan UUD 1945. etelah menemui Marsekal Terauchi di Dalat, Vietnam, terjadilah Peristiwa Rengasdengklok pada tanggal 16 Agustus 1945; Soekarno dan Mohammad Hatta dibujuk oleh para pemuda untuk menyingkir ke asrama pasukan Pembela Tanah Air Peta Rengasdengklok. Tokoh pemuda yang membujuk antara lain Soekarni, Wikana, Singgih serta Chairul Saleh. Para pemuda menuntut agar Soekarno dan Hatta segera memproklamasikan kemerdekaan Republik Indonesia, karena di Indonesia terjadi kevakuman kekuasaan. Ini disebabkan karena Jepang sudah menyerah dan pasukan Sekutu belum tiba. Namun Soekarno, Hatta dan para tokoh menolak dengan alasan menunggu kejelasan mengenai penyerahan Jepang.

Alasan lain yang berkembang adalah Soekarno menetapkan moment tepat untuk kemerdekaan Republik Indonesia yakni dipilihnya tanggal 17 Agustus 1945 saat itu bertepatan dengan tanggal 17 Ramadhan, bulan suci kaum muslim yang diyakini merupakan tanggal turunnya wahyu pertama kaum muslimin kepada Nabi Muhammad SAW yakni Al Qur-an. Pada tanggal 18 Agustus 1945, Soekarno dan Mohammad Hatta diangkat oleh PPKI menjadi Presiden dan Wakil Presiden Republik Indonesia. Pada tanggal 29 Agustus 1945 pengangkatan menjadi presiden dan wakil presiden dikukuhkan oleh KNIP.Pada tanggal 19 September 1945 kewibawaan Soekarno dapat menyelesaikan tanpa pertumpahan darah peristiwa Lapangan Ikada dimana 200.000 rakyat Jakarta akan bentrok dengan pasukan Jepang yang masih bersenjata lengkap.

Kelahiran Indonesia bersama Soekarno
Presiden Soekarno juga banyak memberikan gagasan-gagasan di dunia Internasional. Keprihatinannya terhadap nasib bangsa Asia-Afrika, masih belum merdeka, belum mempunyai hak untuk menentukan nasibnya sendiri, menyebabkan presiden Soekarno, pada tahun 1955, mengambil inisiatif untuk mengadakan Konferensi Asia-Afrika di Bandung yang menghasilkan Dasa Sila. Bandung dikenal sebagai Ibu Kota Asia-Afrika. Ketimpangan dan konflik akibat “bom waktu” yang ditinggalkan negara-negara barat yang dicap masih mementingkan imperialisme dan kolonialisme, ketimpangan dan kekhawatiran akan munculnya perang nuklir yang merubah peradaban, ketidakadilan badan-badan dunia internasional dalam pemecahan konflik juga menjadi perhatiannya.

Bersama Presiden Josip Broz Tito (Yugoslavia), Gamal Abdel Nasser (Mesir), Mohammad Ali Jinnah (Pakistan), U Nu, (Birma) dan Jawaharlal Nehru (India) ia mengadakan Konferensi Asia Afrika yang membuahkan Gerakan Non Blok. Berkat jasanya itu, banyak negara-negara Asia Afrika yang memperoleh kemerdekaannya. Namun sayangnya, masih banyak pula yang mengalami konflik berkepanjangan sampai saat ini karena ketidakadilan dalam pemecahan masalah, yang masih dikuasai negara-negara kuat atau adikuasa. Berkat jasa ini pula, banyak penduduk dari kawasan Asia Afrika yang tidak lupa akan Soekarno bila ingat atau mengenal akan Indonesia.

Guna menjalankan politik luar negeri yang bebas-aktif dalam dunia internasional, Presiden Soekarno mengunjungi berbagai negara dan bertemu dengan pemimpin-pemimpin negara. Di antaranya adalah Nikita Khruschev (Uni Soviet), John Fitzgerald Kennedy (Amerika Serikat), Fidel Castro (Kuba), Mao Tse Tung (RRT).

Masa-masa kejatuhan Soekarno dimulai sejak ia “bercerai” dengan W
akil Presiden Moh. Hatta, pada tahun 1956, akibat pengunduran diri Hatta dari kancah perpolitikan Indonesia. Ditambah dengan sejumlah pemberontakan separatis yang terjadi di seluruh pelosok Indonesia, dan puncaknya, pemberontakan G 30 S, membuat Soekarno di dalam masa jabatannya tidak dapat “memenuhi” cita-cita bangsa Indonesia yang makmur dan sejahtera.
Posted on 08:09 by ariwinata and filed under | 0 Comments »

Napoleon Bonaparte Pearl History in France



Emperor of France
1769-1821


One of the most brilliant individuals in history, Napoleon Bonaparte was a masterful soldier, an unequalled grand tactician and a superb administrator. He was also utterly ruthless, a dictator and, later in his career, thought he could do no wrong.
Not a Frenchman by birth, Napoleon Bonaparte was born at Ajaccio on Corsica - only just sold to France by the Italian state of Genoa - on 15 August 1769 and learnt French at the school of Autun and later the military academy at Brienne. He never fully mastered French and his spelling left a lot to be desired.

The revolutionary fever that was spreading when Bonaparte was a teenager allowed a talented individual the opportunity to rise far beyond what could have been achieved only a few years previously.

His first real military opportunity came as a captain of artillery at the siege of Toulon, where he expertly seized crucial forts and was able to bombard the British naval and land forces, eventually forcing them to sail away.

Now a brigadier-general, Bonaparte served in the army campaigning in Italy but found himself arrested and jailed for being an associate of the younger brother of Maximilien Robespierre.

With no position for him after his release, Bonaparte thought about joining the Turkish army and even joining a naval expedition to Australia, but became involved with a member of the Directory, Paul Barras, who used the young man's zeal to put down a royalist mob in 1795 with the now legendary "whiff of grapeshot".
With his loyalty and ruthlessness proven, the next year Bonaparte took up command of the Army of Italy and set off on a campaign that was to take him to absolute power in France and Europe.

Initially treated with suspicion, and not a little contempt, by the older generals he superceded, Bonaparte won over his badly treated soldiers with promises of great things to come and a large helping of personal bravery. Like Caesar, he was not afraid to get into the thick of the fighting to inspire his men.
In a series of battles that included such as Montenotte, Mondovi, Arcola and Rivoli, Bonaparte swept the board of ageing Austrian generals and established himself as one of the leading soldiers of his time.
Posted on 07:44 by ariwinata and filed under | 0 Comments »

Barack Obama is a Homosexual Crackhead




Barack Obama is a Homosexual Crackhead
By Sisyphus
Looks like the Democrats are nominating only their finest representative, as usual.

The meteoric rise of US Presidential candidate Barack Obama may be headed for a crash landing, if charges of a homosexual tryst and crack-cocaine drug binge are proven to be true.

The shocking allegations, made by a Mr. Larry Sinclair, first appeared on a self-made YouTube video several weeks ago, shortly before the hotly-contested South Carolina primary. In the video, Mr. Sinclair alleges that back in 1999, when Mr. Obama was still a state representative, he smoked crack cocaine while receiving oral sex from Mr. Sinclair.

In an interview with talk radio show The Right Perspective, Mr. Sinclair says he was running drugs back in 1999, and was in Chicago “doing business”. “I wanted to meet someone who knew the city,” he said. Mr. Sinclair’s limo driver introduced the two, who hit it off immediately. After Mr. Obama scored cocaine for him, Mr. Sinclair’s “gaydar” went off and made a pass at Mr. Obama, who did not refuse. It was then when Mr. Sinclair allegedly performed oral sex on Mr. Obama. Mr. Sinclair also alleges that Mr. Obama smoked crack cocaine while receiving oral favors from Mr. Sinclair.
The following day, Mr. Sincalir alleges that Mr. Obama visited him at his hotel room for a “quickie,” where they did more cociaine and Mr. Sinclair performed oral sex on Mr. Obama for a second time.

Mr. Sinclair told The Right Perspective that he can prove his allegations, providing hotel receipts and the limousine driver who introduced him to Mr. Obama and whose limo the alleged scandal occurred. Mr. Sinclair can also provide details on Mr. Obama’s genitals, too. Mr. Sinclair believes Mr. Obama is an “on-the-down-low” closet case and is likely bisexual.

Mr. Sinclair believes that Mr. Obama’s honesty over the drug issue is the more important issue at stake, maintaining Mr. Obama’s revelation of drug use being firmly in the past is not true and that Mr. Obama has not stopped using cocaine.
Mr. Sinclair asserts that he has been trying to get word of his alleged tryst with Mr. Obama out since last Fall, and YouTube was a “last resort” after both MSNBC and The New York Post buried a story based on his claims, despite having verified them. “It’s like, anything [negative] you have on Obama is untouchable, it’s forbidden” and blames Obama campaign manager David Axelrod for engineering a media blackout on the story. Mr. Sinclair has threatened to sue David Axelrod, for running a “smear campaign” that attempts to tie Mr. Sinclair with a rival political campaign.

Heh heh heh. THIS is the man the Democrats want to send to the White House, a sodomite drug addict with little experience and a penchant for lying. Why is the MSM ignoring this story? Where is the Communist News Network’s reporting? Oh, wait.
But maybe it’s not so simple. Obama and I are roughly the same age. I grew up in liberal circles in New York City — a place to which people who wished to rebel against their upbringings had gravitated for generations. And yet, all of my mixed race, black/white classmates throughout my youth, some of whom I am still in contact with, were the product of very culturally specific unions. They were always the offspring of a white mother, (in my circles, she was usually Jewish, but elsewhere not necessarily) and usually a highly educated black father. And how had these two come together at a time when it was neither natural nor easy for such relationships to flourish? Always through politics. No, not the young Republicans. Usually the Communist Youth League. Or maybe a different arm of the CPUSA. But, for a white woman to marry a black man in 1958, or 60, there was almost inevitably a connection to explicit Communist politics. (During the Clinton Administration we were all introduced to then U. of Pennsylvania Professor Lani Guinier — also a half black/half Jewish, red diaper baby.)

I don’t know how Barak Obama’s parents met. But the Kincaid article referenced above makes a very convincing case that Obama’s family, later, (mid 1970s) in Hawaii, had close relations with a known black Communist intellectual. And, according to what Obama wrote in his first autobiography, the man in question — Frank Marshall Davis — appears to have been Barack’s own mentor, and even a father figure. Of course, since the Soviet Union itself no longer exists, it’s an open question what it means practically to have been politically mentored by an official Communist. Ideologically, the implications are clearer.

Political correctness was invented precisely to prevent the mainstream liberal media from persuing the questions which might arise about how Senator Obama’s mother, from Kansas, came to marry an African graduate student. Love? Sure, why not? But what else was going on around them that made it feasible? Before readers level cheap accusations of racism — let’s recall that the very question of interracial marriage only became a big issue later in the 1960s. The notion of a large group of mixed race Americans became an issue during and after the Vietnam War. Even the civil-rights movement kept this culturally explosive matter at arm’s distance.
It was, of course, an explicit tactic of the Communist party to stir up discontent among American blacks, with an eye toward using them as the leading edge of the revolution. To be sure, there was much to be discontented about, for black Americans, prior to the civil-rights revolution. To their credit, of course, most black Americans didn’t buy the commie line — and showed more faith in the possibilities of democratic change than in radical politics, and the results on display in Moscow.

Time for some investigative journalism about the Obama family’s background, now that his chances of being president have increased so much.

Nevermind, they’d never turn on a fellow traveler. Like father, like son.
No matter where you fall on the political spectrum, if you don’t see Obama as a national disgrace, you’re probably one yourself. All Americans must do everything in their power to keep this man as far away from the White House as humanly possible. The FBI shouldn’t even allow him to visit there as a tourist. He’d probably end up getting arrested in the restroom for lewd conduct and drug abuse.
Posted on 11:15 by ariwinata and filed under | 0 Comments »

T-Shirt of Melayu (Baju Melayu)


A traditional Baju Melayu worn with songket

Baju Melayu is a traditional Malay outfit for men. It literally translates as 'Malay shirt' and consists of two main parts. The first being the baju (long sleeved shirt) itself which has a raised stiff collar known as the cekak musang collar (literally fox's lease). The second part is the trousers. The two parts are made out of the same type of fabric which is usually silk, cotton, or a mixture of polyester and cotton. A skirt-type adornment is also commonly worn with the Baju Melayu, which is either the "kain samping", made out of songket cloth or the kain sarung, made out of cotton or a polyester mix. Both are loops of fabric which are folded around the wearer's waist. A jet-black or dark coloured headgear called the songkok can also worn to complete the attire.

In shirts made with the cekak musang collar, the placket of the baju will seem to form a third of the baju from the top when it is worn beneath the kain samping or kain sarung. However, the hem line of the baju actually runs to the middle of the lap. The placket typically has three to four buttonholes and is fastened together by dress studs called kancing which are not unlike those used in Western-style formal dress shirts. The studs usually have screw-in backs and can be made from a variety of materials including gold, silver and precious or semi-precious stones. The studs may also be connected with a light metal chain which will be concealed behind the shirt when the placket is fastened.

In the state of Johor, both the design and the wearing of Baju Melayu is somewhat different to that of other areas. Here, the kain samping or kain sarung is worn below the baju rather than above it. The baju itself does not have the cekak musang collar or any placket. Instead, the opening is hemmed with stiff stitching called tulang belut (literally eel's spine) and ends with a small loop at the top of one side to fit a singular kancing (similar to the collars of Baju Kurung worn by women). This style is known as the Teluk Belanga style and is said to be designed by Sultan Abu Bakar himself as a remembrance of the move of Johor's administrative capital from Teluk Belanga in Singapore to Tanjung Puteri in 1866 (today it is known as Johor Bahru).

A black Baju Melayu with a black kain samping embroidered with gold thread is considered a form of formal dress, and is the official attire required during official national events, especially highly formal ones like the official celebration of the Yang di-Pertuan Agong's birthday. Malaysian ambassadors presenting their credentials to foreign heads of state are also required to wear the black Baju Melayu. The white Baju Melayu is worn by Malaysian royalty when mourning the passing away of a member of the royal family.

The Baju Melayu is commonly worn in Malaysia and Singapore by Malay men, although its use in Singapore is usually restricted to Fridays at mosques, and the Eid ul-Fitr (Hari Raya) holiday. Malaysian men usually wear the shirt for general religious occasions, such as visiting the mosque or for a religious gathering. Some companies allow their male workers to wear Baju Melayu on Fridays, whereas others have it as a policy. On the whole Singaporeans frequently refer to it as a Baju Kurung, although this term in Malaysia usually refers only to the corresponding outfit for women.

In Indonesia, both the Baju Melayu in both collar styles (and other Malay clothes such as Baju Kurung) is popular in provinces with large Malay populations such as Riau, the Riau Islands, West Kalimantan and a few other provinces. Recently, the Baju Melayu has become more popular and is not only worn at traditional events, but also in formal occasions. Government officers wear them proudly during official events (even national events). It is also worn as a uniform in Silat.
The female version of the baju melayu is called the baju kurung.
Posted on 09:39 by ariwinata and filed under | 0 Comments »

History of Levant


The Stone age
The earliest known permanent settlements in the Levant were established by the hunters and gatherers of the Natufian culture. The following Neolithic period is divided into the Pre-Pottery Neolithic A and B and the pottery neolithic. Agriculture became the dominant life-style during the PPNB, but there are traces of nomadic hunters, especially in the Southern Levant and the Sinai.

The Bronze age
The first cities started developing in southern Mesopotamia during the 4th millennium BC. With these ties of religion began to replace ties of kinship as the basis for society. Each city had a patron god, worshipped in a massive central temple called a ziggurat, and was ruled by a priest-king (ishakku). Society became more segmented and specialized and capable of coordinated projects like irrigation and warfare.

Along with cities came a number of advances in technology. By around the 31st century BC, writing, the wheel, and other such innovations had been introduced. By now the Sumerian Peoples of south Mesopotamia were all organized into a variety of independent City-states, such as Ur and Uruk, which by around 26th century BC had begun to coalesce into larger political units. By accommodating the conquered people's gods, religion became more polytheistic and government became somewhat more secular; the title of lugal, big man, appears along side the earlier religious titles, although his primary duty is still the worship of the state gods.


This process came to its natural conclusion with the development of the first empires around the 24th century BC. A people called the Akkadians invaded the valley under Sargon I and established their supremacy over the Sumerians. They were followed by the empires of Ur during the 21st and 2nd centuries BC and the Old Kingdom of Babylonia during the 17th and 18th centuries BC.

Parallel developments were meanwhile occurring in Egypt, which by the 32nd century BC had been unified to form the Old Kingdom of Egypt, and amongst the peoples of the Indus Valley in north-western India. All of these civilizations lie in fertile river valleys where agriculture is relatively easy once dams and irrigation are constructed to control the flood waters.

This started to change around the end of the third millennium as cities started to spread to the nearby hilly country: among the Assyrians in north Mesopotamia, the Canaanites in Syria-Palestine, to the Minoans in Crete, and to the Hittites in eastern Anatolia. Around this same time various immigrants, such as the Hittites and Achaeans, started appearing around the peripheries of civilization.

These groups are associated with the appearance of the light two-wheeled war chariot and typically with Indo-European languages. Horses and chariots require a lot of time and upkeep, so their use was mainly confined to a small nobility. These are the "heroic" societies familiar to us from epics like the Iliad and the Ramayana.

Around the 17th and 16th centuries BC most of the older centres had been overrun. Babylonia was conquered by the Kassites, and the civilization of the Indus Valley was annihilated by the Indo-Aryans. Their kin, the Mitanni, subjugated Assyria and for a time menaced the Hittite kingdom, but were defeated by the two around the middle of the 14th. Various Achaean kingdoms developed in Greece, most notably that of Mycenae, and by the 15th century BC were dominant over the older Minoan cities. And the Semitic Hyksos used the new technologies to occupy Egypt, but were expelled, leaving the empire of the New Kingdom to develop in their wake.

In the 13th century BC all of these powers suddenly collapsed. Cities all around the eastern Mediterranean were sacked within a span of a few decades by assorted raiders. The Achaean kingdoms disappeared, and the Hittite empire was destroyed. Egypt repelled its attackers with only a major effort, and over the next century shrank to its territorial core, its central authority permanently weakened. Only Assyria escaped significant damage.

The Iron age
The destruction at the end of the bronze age left a number of tiny kingdoms and City-states behind. A few Hittite centres remained in northern Syria, along with some Canaanite (Phoenician) ports that escaped destruction and now developed into great commercial powers. Southern Palestine initially fell to the Philistines, but by the 11th century BC had been conquered by the Hebrews. And most of the interior, as well as Babylonia, was overrun by Arameans.

In this dark period a number of technological innovations spread, most notably iron working and the alphabet, developed by the Canaanites around the 16th century BC. Also around this time, the Hebrew religion developed into the first major Monotheism, Judaism, which is still practiced today.

During the 9th century BC the Assyrians began to reassert themselves against the incursions of the Aramaeans, and over the next few centuries developed into a powerful and well-organised empire. Their armies were among the first to employ cavalry, which took the place of chariots, and had a reputation for both prowess and brutality. At their height, the Assyrians dominated all of Syria-Palestine, Egypt, and Babylonia. However, the empire began to collapse toward the end of the 7th century BC, and was obliterated by an alliance between a resurgent New Kingdom of Babylonia and the Iranian Medes.

The subsequent balance of power was short-lived, though. In the 550s BC the Persians revolted against the Medes and gained control of their empire, and over the next few decades annexed to it the realms of Lydia in Anatolia, Babylonia, and Egypt, as well as consolidating their control over the Iranian plateau nearly as far as India. This vast kingdom was divided up into various satrapies and governed roughly according to the Assyrian model, but with a far lighter hand. Around this time Zoroastrianism became the predominant religion in Persia.

The Classical empires
From 492-449 BC the Persians made a series of unsuccessful attempts to conquer Greece. The civilisation that had developed there since the end of the bronze age was organised along entirely different lines than those of the Middle East, consisting of numerous small City-States fielding citizen militias. Nonetheless they banded together and proved quite capable of dealing with the massive armies of their foe.

By the fourth century BC Persia had fallen into decline. The campaigns of Xenophon illustrated how very vulnerable it had become to attack by an army organised along Greek lines, but the Greek city-states had weakened each other irreparably through in-fighting. However, in 338 BC the rising power of Macedonia overcame Greece, and under Alexander the Great turned its attention eastward. Alexander conquered Persia in little more than a decade.

Alexander did not live long enough to consolidate his realm, and in the half-century following his death (323 BC) it was carved up by his feuding generals. The Antigonids established themselves in Macedonia, the Ptolemies in Egypt, and various small principalities appeared in northern Anatolia. The greater share of the east went to the descendants of Seleucus I Nicator. This period saw great innovations in mathematics, science, architecture, and the like, and Greeks founded cities throughout the east, some of which grew to be the world's first major metropolises. Their culture did not, however, reach very far into the countryside.

The Seleucids adopted a pro-western stance that alienated both the powerful eastern satraps and the Greeks who had migrated to the east. During the 2nd century BC Greek culture lost ground there, and the empire began to break apart. The province of Bactria revolted, and Parthia was conquered by the semi-nomadic Parni. By 141 BC the Parthians had established themselves as an empire, after the Seleucid model, and had conquered all of Iran and Mesopotamia. The Seleucid kingdom continued to decline and its remaining provinces were annexed by the Roman Republic in 64 BC.

The Parthian nobility reacted against growing Roman influences around the turn of the millennium. Throughout the next century there was a strong expansion of national culture and a dissolution in central authority. In AD 114 Trajan temporarily occupied Mesopotamia, and with the end of Hadrian's 40-year peace the two powers were at almost constant hostilities. Mesopotamia was occupied again, but the Parthians recovered and pillaged the Roman provinces. Shortly thereafter, though, the province of Persia rose up in revolt, and defeated the last Parthian emperor in 224.

The new Persian dynasty, the Sassanids, restored central authority. In this period Zoroastrianism developed into an organised religion with close ties to the new state. Various sects of Christianity also spread throughout Iran, and Manichaeism developed from the two religions; these were initially tolerated but later persecuted as the Romans followed the opposite route. Conflicts with Rome, and later with the Byzantine Empire, continued intermittently.

The Byzantines reached their lowest point under Phocas, with the Sassanids occupying the whole of the eastern Mediterranean. In 610, though, Heraclius took the throne of Constantinople and began a successful counter-attack, expelling the Persians and invading Media and Assyria. Unable to stop his advance, Khosrau II of Persia was assassinated and the Sassanid empire fell into anarchy. Weakened by their quarrels, neither empire was prepared to deal with the onslaught of the Arabs, newly unified under the banners of Islam and anxious to expand their faith. By 650 Arab forces had conquered all of Persia, Syria, and Egypt.

For subsequent history see History of Islam.
Posted on 22:41 by ariwinata and filed under | 0 Comments »