The economist has predicted that separatist movements in the world will make headlines in 2020. At best, this will lead to political turbulence and tension. At worst, it could lead to violence. Separatism sentiment in Papua and West Papua provinces is not much different with other separatist movements in the world. Separatists use every sensitive issue to make a noise as big as possible to manipulate international public opinion. That is why I believe defending Papua and West Papua from separatism is very important for the people who live peacefully in the region.
Quoting the Economist: “Across the world, two types of identity-driven movements are increasingly clashing—and feeding off each other. On the one hand, there are separatist groups that seek to break away from their nation-state and establish new countries; on the other, there is the outraged and assertive nationalism of existing states, determined to crush separatism”.
Clash between splittist and unionist in Papua and West Papua provinces is observable. West Papuan Indonesia nationalist together with their brothers and sisters from many different ethnic groups are calmly defending the region from separatist threat. However West Papua separatists continue add fuel to burn the region into violent communal conflict. For example they killed 19 innocent workers in December 2018 and 30 civilians in September 2019.
Attempts by West Papua separatists to terror the people in 2018 and 2019 and perhaps this year were synchronised with the propaganda by Free West Papua networks around the world. They have support from leftist mass media, some journalists, and also communists and anarchists in the world. They also maximise social media as propaganda outlet to incite hatred against West Papua nationalists and Indonesia in general.
West Papua Indonesia nationalists are very defensive, majority people who live in Papua and West Papuan are also very silent. Several West Papuan separatist leaders have provoked violent conflict by hijacking #BlackLivesMatter campaign, but they failed.
These developments have stoked the radicalism of the West Papua separatist movement. To defend Papua and West Papua provinces from this serious threat, I would like to ask all silent majority in the region and all Indonesian to respond to the threat of the break-up of the population and country.