‘Ilusi Negara Islam’

May 21st, 2009, in News, by

The new book “The Islamic State Illusion”, taking on hardline Islam in Indonesia.

The book Ilusi Negara Islam: Ekspansi Gerakan Islam Transnasional di Indonesia, (The Illusion of an Islamic State: the Expansion of Transnational Islamic Movements in Indonesia) published on 1st April and ‘launched’ on 16th May, is edited by former president Abdurrahman Wahid (Gus Dur), published by PT Desantara Utama Media with funding and/or support from the LibForAll Foundation in the USA, the Wahid Institute, Gerakan Bhinneka Tunggal Ika, and The Maarif Institute.

Ilusi Negara Islam

At the launch, apart from Gus Dur:

  • Ahmad Syafii Maarif (Buya), ex head of Muhammadiyah, author of the prologue
  • Nahdlatul Ulama (NU) figure, A. Mustofa Bisri (Gus Mus), author of the epilogue
  • Azyumardi Azra, liberal Muslim thinker
  • Try Sutrisno, ex-vice president
  • Wiranto, vice presidential running mate of Jusuf Kalla
  • Akbar Tanjung, former head of Partai Golkar
  • Romo Franz Magnis Suseno, well-known Catholic priest

The book’s general premise is that the unity of Indonesia, the strength of its mainstream moderate Muslim organisations Nahdlatul Ulama and Muhammadiyah, and the true meaning of Islam as “a blessing for the world” are under threat from radical ideologies emanating from the middle east, primarily Wahabi Ikhwanul Muslimin.

It’s chapter headings:

  • Looking at transnational Islamic movements and their agents in Indonesia
  • The infiltration into Indonesia of Wahabi Ikhwanul Muslimin ideology
  • The ideology and agenda of hardline Islam in Indonesia
  • The infiltration of the agents of hardline Islam into Indonesian Islam
  • Conclusion and recommendations

C Holland Taylor of the LibForAll Foundation in the USA says of it: kompas

This book is very useful in showing the face of real Islam.

Ilusi Negara Islam is said to be not widely available in bookstores with some reports, said to be spread by a blogger, that Gramedia, the largest bookstore chain in the country, had received threats that if it carried the book Gramedia stores would be burnt down.

However Bambang Nuryono of Gramedia’s Human Resources Department said he had no idea about any threats, nor had he heard of the book, while another person from the Sales Department said Ilusi Negara Islam was not yet stocked by Gramedia. tempo

The book’s 322 pages can be downloaded below:

You cant see this bit

40 Comments on “‘Ilusi Negara Islam’”

  1. Odinius says:

    ET said:

    PKS and a lot of other Islamists are indeed affiliated with the Muslim Brotherhood but they are not directly involved with the emergence of the conservative, exclusivist madrasas of a new type.

    Yeah, I was just trying to point out that, for a lot of people, all Islamism is “wahhabism,” and thus ignore that many fundamentalist groups have conflicting agenda, and pose different challenges to Indonesia’s pluralist order.

  2. Odinius says:

    Cuk said:

    Yes no question that PKS is still playing within the rules of game but they are playing for the lose because the current democracy game is contradict with many guidance on the Islamic teaching itself and more over, PKS seemed to me try to blend the water with the oil that the process will never work.

    That depends on what Islamic teachings you follow. Obviously which hadiths you decide are more important than which others would make the difference, from a theological point of view, as would taking a metaphorical vs. literalist approach to the Quran. There are plenty of variants of Islamic theology that fit snugly with democracy, just as there are variants of Christianity, Judaism, or Hinduism that do not (they all have notions of divine kingship, pyramidal power structures, etc. built into scriptures).

    As I see it, usually the people who say “Islam and democracy are not compatible” are either Islamophobes or Muslims who seek to benefit from a non-democratic order.

  3. David says:

    Ross said

    I notice in the press there is some talk of retailers not selling the new book due to threats from intimidatory ‘goaties’ on the prowl.

    Well I did mention a bit of that in the post but … Ahmad Suaedy from Wahid Institute says that bookstores generally don’t stock it because ‘maybe they’re afraid’. detik

  4. adin says:

    this book is garbage

  5. djoko says:

    Interesting how no one has made mention that several of the researchers who were ostensibly involved in the book itself are rejecting it as being nothing more than a political exercise, as opposed to having any real worth:


    Just for those interested too, those researchers aren’t hardliners who decided that the book was being used for ‘evil liberal purposes’ or anything like that. At least one of them is a member of JIMM, the Muhammadiyah equivalent of JIL (every bule’s favourite bunch of Muslims).

    Gus Dur and WI in some ways are a bit like the mirror reflection of HTI. Never let the truth get in the way of a good ideological axe to grind.

  6. Abdul Khalid al Jumhuri says:

    I have my first-hand experiences with some prominent PKS cadres who are now holding power here and there. I knew them since 1987, 11 years before the fall of Suharto. My take? I could not trust any of those dudes. Firstly, they have the right to deny the Al-Haramain money that they received, which is wahabbian fund. Secondly, they will conveniently change sides to the highest bidders for so long as it benefit them – it is only politics. Thirdly, they are desperate for power and very jealous to those have it. Lastly, when they win in any contest, they hogged-down all available cakes for themselves and never for the betterment of Indonesia. I have never seen any Indonesian political party so insiduous as this one.

  7. Mohamad Sofyan says:

    If the book is right and objective, Indonesia will be jeopardized, like in Iraq, Palestine, Pakistan, Sudan…But I am still optimistic that there are still a lot of moslems who are intelligent and moderate….

  8. Norm Chumpsky says:

    Sylvester, dejavu, ET: You’re pretty much right no the money.

    Cukurangan, Odinius: Cuk, I think Odi is right in this instance. You make a great point, looking at the history of similar efforts, but the PKS/Indonesia case is truly unique… and troubling. PKS do not need to win it all. They just need to win enough. After all, they won more in this year’s legislative election than PD/SBY won in the 2004 leg. election. And may just get the four dream ministries they have been aiming for (at this stage of the game).

  9. Albert Nichow says:

    The Best Book in this year over the world

  10. saptukelono says:

    What so interesting is the fact that the mentioned organizations hardly made a peep as if they affirmed the allegations written in the book.

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