from an NGO employee in indonesia...

(in response to the reuters article to be found at: Reuters Jakarta )

(some personal details redacted)

thanks yours, which reaches me in (a city in australia).

briefly: students and unemployed yoof (over 50 pct of 19-25 year-olds) have had nothing to do but riot since late 1997. just now they have a new government that has not yet established its corruption credentials or slipped on any major scandal. so no reason to riot: very boring. along comes the dickwagging u.s. and provides a perfect excuse. so groups of kids like fpi (who are on the looney fringe of a country where the norm is the looney centre) shoot their mouths off. then the u.s. ambassador weighs in with incredibly ill-considered accusations that the police are not doing their best to protect americans (who are not genuinely threatned, so it is hard to know what more they could do). he goes further, to threaten that u.s. corporations will pull out of indonesia unless amercians are treated like egg-shells.

it gets worse. he urges yanks funded by the u.s. government (such as me) to take advantage of "voluntary repatriation" measures. this means my colleague xxxxx and i have to call our 30 colleagues together and explain that we have been invited to leave (because of course we are sooooooo precious) but we will do nothing for our indonesian colleagues, who presumably can take good care of themselves, since we pay them at least a twentieth of what we earn.

my own bosses in bangkok are hyperventilating along with the rest of them and are "suggesting" that i don't go back to jakarta as scheduled on wednesday. i have "suggested" that my work permit is in my british passport, that he doesn't pay my xxxxx xxxxxxxxxx or contribute to my xxxxxxx xxxx, and that he can stick it in a high risk location where he should be using condoms.

the thing that amazes me most of all is that no-one seems to grasp this sort of arrogant exceptionalism leads directly to the sort of terrorist attacks on u.s. targets that we saw last month.

poor afghanistan. what i want to know is this: who is targeting missiles on town halls and banks in boston and new york that hold meetings and funds to support the on-going terrorist war waged by the ira?

best love, xx