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TNI chief challenged to screen Jagal and Senyap, not just anti-communist propaganda film

Viva - September 20, 2017

Dedy Priatmojo, Reza Fajri – House of Representatives (DPR) Indonesian Democratic Party of Struggle (PDI-P) faction member Eva Sundari says that TNI (Indonesian military) chief General Gatot Nurmantyo must be balance in screening the historical film about the 1965 affair.

According to Eva, they should not just screen the Treachery of the September 30 Movement/Indonesian Communist Party (Pengkhianatan G30S/PKI), but other films like Jagal, Senyap and The Year of Living Dangerously should also be seen by the public.

The award-winning documentary films Jagal (The Act of Killing, 2012) and Senyap (The Look of Silence, 2014) by Joshua Oppenheimer, tell the story of the executioners during the 1965 mass killings. Screenings of both films have been banned or closed down by various parties.

The Year of Living Dangerously (1982) meanwhile, is a film starring Mel Gibson and tells the story of the situation in Jakarta in 1965. The film was banned by the Suharto dictatorship when it was released.

"The TNI commander must be fair, don't just allow the New Order propaganda version to be shown, but other versions as well. Jagal and Senyap as well, including Mel Gibson's film The Living Dangerously Years [sic]. As well as supporting similar films for the millennial generation as has been suggested by President [Joko Widodo]", said Eva in Senayan, Jakarta on Monday September 20.

According to Eva, if the TNI only pushes the one version, specifically the New Order regime's version, then the TNI will give the impression of being political, which it is not allowed to be.

"Don't just endorse one version, it will become political. The TNI's main role isn't related to politics right. We sincerely [want to] enlighten the nation", said Eva.

The PDI-P politician says that the TNI as an institution must also be progressive in how it views future national threats. According to Eva, the most real threat at the moment is extremism.

"Religious extremists have already set off many bombs but it's not considered a threat. There's the film Jihad Selfie, its more relevant to hold mass screenings of that because it's contextual", said Eva.

Earlier TNI chief General Gatot Nurmantyo admitted that he had indeed ordered his officers to hold joint screenings of the controversial G30S/PKI film.

According to Nurmantyo, the government simply wants to provide knowledge about Indonesian history, nothing else. It is to remind all children of the nation and the younger generation not to allow a repeat of the 1965 affair because it was so very painful.

"I'm not going to get into a polemic and only [want] to pass on what happened to the younger generation. If we're not allowed to pass on history what kind of nation will we become", said Nurmantyo in a written statement received by Viva on the afternoon of Monday September 18.

Nurmantyo insists that the screening of the G30S/PKI film will be a lesson sayig all of the story depicted in the film is factual and important for the younger generation to know about so the nation can learn from history. (ase)

[Translated by James Balowski for the Indoleft News Service. The original title of the article was Panglima TNI Diminta Putar juga Film 'Jagal' dan 'Senyap'.]

Source: http://m.viva.co.id/berita/politik/958694-panglima-tni-diminta-putar-juga-film-jagal-dan-senyap.

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