Despite a lotta appreciation and aknowledgement around, I am not sure how many Indonesian bloggers get inspired by my call to blog in Englishto make Indonesian voices heard to the outside world. Yet, I found one or two bloggers who have explicitly stated that they start blogging in English because of the encouragement from or inspired by me.
One of those are Dedy W. Kusuma who starts blogging in English. In his english-posting debut, he says
“… when i see that some of my indonesian brothers/sisters who study abroad write very good in their blogs in english, i feel that it’s time to practice the ‘learning by doing’ methode in improving my english. I hope that day by day my english will be better.”
He further said:
“I believe that when indonesian students write more and more in the most popular language in the world, the people from all over the world will give better appreciation on Indonesia.”
Dedy is among those Indonesian youth who study in the middle-east. There are roughly 10.000 Indonesian students in the region mostly in Egypt (Al-Azhar University), Syria, Jordan, Lebanon, Tunisia, Marocco, Libya, Sudan, etc. Most of whom belong to pesantren (Islamic boarding school) background. Hence, in terms of socio-cultural affiliation they are the offspring of NU (Nahdlatul Ulama)–the biggest Islamic organization; and Muhammadiyah–the second largest.
In terms of political affiliation, however, they’re not automatically rush to PKB (NU political party) or PAN (Muhammadiyah political party). It’s more complicated and homogenous. Especially, many of them have been ‘enlightened’ by new vista of Islamic-social-cultural structures with middle-east flavour like Muslim Brotherhood (Ikhwanul Muslimin). Therefore, there are many of them who affiliate themselves into newly-founded party like PKS (prosperous justice party) who got similarity with Muslim Brotherhood political spectrum.
Indonesians and Foreigners who are interested in learning and watching Indonesian politic needs to see very closely these Indonesian youth from the middle-east as they will play an important political role in Indonesia in the near future. Now,PKS party grows, and grows very fast. Likewise, PKB and PAN. You need to know the way the men behind it think, feel and write. And of course, the best way to know them “personally” is through their personal writing in their blogs.
So, in this context, Dedy language-switch into English is a blessing for all of us. I hope he would encourage other Indonesian-student blogger in the middle-east to blog in English as well. Many current Islamic political party leaders were graduated from the region. And as we know, many western analysts and governments (particularly the US) keep a close watch to them with unnecessary suspicion. It’s the duty of these young guys to explain –of course, in English–to the world what they stand for and what their vision to contribute to make the world a better place for all humanity, regardless of their faith, race, culture, ethnic or any other preferences.