10 December 2010
Luna Maya, Ariel and Pemuda Pancasila...
So, what is the Pancasila Youth (Pemuda Pancasila) doing at the Ariel sex tape trial?
Part of the interest of watching a controversial celebrity trial is watching how the support for and against the defendant align themselves. A trial about sex tapes, and pornography generally, is certain to bring them out.
So, how do they align in the Ariel distribution of sex tapes case?
On, the one side you seemingly have the self-righteous Garis or the Islamic Reform Movement who would like to see Ariel get the death penalty for his lack of morals. To be clear, Garis is about the creation of an Islamic state. It is not about reform of Islam and the promotion of moderate Islam. So, Garis lines up fairly well with the other resident evil in Indonesia, FPI.
The Islam Defenders' Front or, as some people prefer, the white-robed thugs, also would like to see Ariel punished severely. However, there was a moment or two there where the FPI thought Ariel might want to repent and get more in touch with his Muslim spiritual side. Unfortunately, from an FPI marketing point of view, Ariel seems to have chosen a different path to redemption than the one offered by FPI. Strangely, or perhaps logically, enough these are the folks that find themselves aligned with the government through the Office of the Attorney General and the public prosecutors tasked with garnering a conviction.
On the other side, is just about everyone else. Everyone else here includes not only the long-suffering girlfriend, Luna Maya. Tere is also Ariel's daughter and extended family. And, also his dyed in the wool fans, and just about anyone with a shred of common sense. However, also lining up on this side of the equation is Pemuda Pancasila.
Having a look at the photo (thanks Kapan Lagi), it would seem that the Pancasila Youth are there in support of Luna Maya as her personal security. This is probably not a bad idea in a lot of respects. I am not a fan of Pemuda Pancasila, never have been and will never likely be. To each their own though. So, why is it not a bad idea. Well, it is not a bad idea because the police thought the potential for violent conflict at the trial in the District Court in Bandung was so great that they thought it necessary to deploy 600 armed officers. It is a good idea because the FPI and Garis have threatened violence and intimidation. It is a good idea because this whole trial is a media circus. Therefore, in order to plow your way through the waiting throng a bevy of beefy lads is probably just the thing.
I have heard that this kind of close personal protection is not a hugely expensive deal. So, if the figures I have seen being bandied about are true then somewhere between IDR 60,000 and IDR 150,000 is a pretty good deal. It is also real value for effort for the Pancasila Youth boys as well. Nothing like a little bit of exposure in order to advance one's goals. It would seem that the Pancasila Youth are affiliated with the West Java Chapter and under the auspices of Kang Dasep.
Yet, in the big scheme of things, this is all a side show and an unhappy distraction. I would really like to know what sort of personal toll this is taking on Ariel and Luna Maya, particularly their relationship together. To be honest, it is nice to actually see the degree of loyalty that Luna Maya has. She turns up to each trial hearing and she professes her love of Ariel and her disappointment in the process, particularly the fact that charges were ever pursued and laid.
The question, if I had permission to ask one, would be "will you last?" Take that as you will. Maybe it is will you last personally? Maybe it is will you last as a couple? Maybe it refers to whether there are lasting careers to be repaired here? My personal hope is that the case runs out of steam and just dies where it stands. So, my second question follows on from the first in that sense, "where do you go from here?"
There will undoubtedly be more posts on this. I think it is time to look at a few more issues in depth and do a little bit of critical legal analysis on matters such as retroactive use of laws, legal representation, prosecutorial discretion or misconduct, and the like.
So, perhaps this story needs a narrator, maybe we should 'call him Ishmael'!