Sunday, July 29, 2007
  Kings Of The Castle?

It's worth noting that the recent floods in China and Central Sulawesi are the result of environmental degradation and that those in the UK could have been prevented if the vast sums allocated for flood prevention schemes had actually been spent. These were both major factors in the disastrous Jakarta flooding of this and every year and symptomatic of the vacuous stance of the city's politicians and bureaucracy.

Now, with the gubernatorial election upon us here in Jakarta, we are bombarded with such a barrage of hollow graffiti'd slogans that for all most of us care, the candidates themselves might just as well be holograms. It is no consolation to know that future elections could include independent candidates given that they too will be dependent on the wealth of their supporters and the political machinery, the workings of which are mysterious to all but the initiated.

This year we are being exhorted to vote for a cartoon character ~ Mr. Moustache ~ who is such a profound visionary that he was able to diminish the impact of this year's floods by commenting that other cities have them.

The other team asks if we are bored with traffic jams. Of course we bloody are, and yes we would all love to live in a clean and safe city where it is easy to find a nice rewarding job. Such as being the next Governor of Jakarta?

The electorate is treated like a kindergarten class, and this is very strange because children in kindergarten classes are treated like high school students.

Here in Indonesia global trends in schooling are being aped with minimal thought for the conditions and consequences. Schooling is becoming standardised and robotised with linear, multi-choice tests. Few, if any, allowances are made for different rates of physical and emotional development among children. Test this, test that, at this age and that.

Play is gradually disappearing from kindergartens in order to ensure that children can read, write and do complicated algebraic equations before they 'graduate'. From as young as two, when Indonesian kids can be enrolled in mathematics and English classes, they are taught that competition is better than co-operation. There is minimal incentive for children to be creative in case they 'fall behind'.

Behind what?

A report just released by the American Academy of Paediatrics says that what children really need is unstructured playtime, just like most of us had. Unstructured play helps children become creative, discover their own passions, develop problem-solving skills, relate to others and adjust to school settings, whereas a lack of spontaneous play can lead to obesity and depression.

That there are so few opportunities for Indonesian kids to be creative is not considered. After all, there is the great narcotic, the opium of the masses, TV; plonk kids in front of it, subject them to the endless BUY ME BUY ME adverts and their minds lose any incentive for independent thought. Their natural escape into the hidden and private worlds of play and literature is denied. It is these worlds which encourage creativity, a necessary tool for survival.

As a lad in London, as well as dressing up, making hand puppets out of toilet roll centres, playing marbles and riding my pre-BMX bike up and down the gravel pits on Blackheath, I played among the bomb sites over the road, a natural urban jungle for our own war games.

I also discovered the joys of reading for pleasure. My good friend David Jardine recently contributed an article to the Jakarta Post applauding the staggering achievement of raising the literacy rate from 10% to the current 90%+ in less than fifty years. However, as he rightly pointed out, these stats relate to what is termed functional literacy skill, the ability to read directions, advertisements and school text books. It does not relate to the magic world of story telling which, I agree, is a key to creativity.

By all means, let children read the Harry Potter books and watch the movies, but that is a once in a couple of years activity which, particularly in this country, does not encourage children to read. If you've ever wondered why there are so few renowned authors in Indonesia, then merely consider the very limited access to libraries and the paucity of bookshops in this megacity.

Apart from stores such as Gramedia, with their homogenous range of reading material, kids are generally stuck with their school books and glossy magazines featuring superfluous superstars. And because they have had permission from City Hall, these outlets are generally housed in shopping malls built where parks and playspaces used to be.

If you are a child and want to read fiction, then, as David pointed out, you may have to rely on the few noble ventures run by community volunteers.

There is an obvious conclusion to this: our emerging democracy is not yet mature enough to encourage the joy of play. Politics are seen to be serious business, with 'business' being the operative word.

Until such time as candidates for election prioritise the quality of life and opportunities for recreation and play, rather than making existing machinery efficient, then I have but one message: Get Down, You Naughty Rascals.

[First published in the Sunday Post 29th July]

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6:00 pm |
Thursday, July 26, 2007
A Short Break


10:00 am
Monday, July 23, 2007
  Jakarta is (sort of) tops for blogging

Enda Nasution, the Godfather of Indonesian blogging, discovered this link which purports to show that, based on content and comments posting, Jakarta is on a par with London and some 28 other conurbations worldwide when it comes to blogging.

I don't believe there's any significance to this information, partly because I can't find any statistics and also because there's no information about how many readers there are. I've always thought that all writing is meant to be read and by that definition there are few, if any, influential blogs in Indonesia, let alone Jakarta.

Vanity writing which was once confined to diaries you didn't want your parents to read, is now open to all. The majority of blogs are of the "I kissed the cat, hit the boyfriend and this is a picture of me shopping" variety. I don't read those, but if they are the start of a journey to a deeper written literacy, then that can only be good.

Maybe it is dumbing down, but then so are the majority of the printed media. I can't wholly agree, therefore, with author Andrew Keen who is not so keen on us amateurs clogging up hyperspace. In fact, he regularly gives talks entitled "The message is dead: how Web 2.0 is reducing all marketing to spam". He's also written a book about it, The Cult Of The Amateur, just to prove that his writing has somewhat more validity than that of we blogging cloggers. (Of course, Jakartass is not a clogging blogger because ~ plug, plug ~ I have a book coming out next month.)

That 'proper' writers seem to think that they are better than we 'amateurs' is pure élitism. What is true is that in order to survive, the printed media has had to adapt and adopt a hyperspace presence. The Guardian newspaper, for example has more online readers than off. That our fingers remain ink free is possibly a bonus; what is more relevant is the interactivity which enables readers to participate in the issues which shape our lives.

And the use of the internet is one such online debate.

Seven hours in a good public library, or in a good university library, is qualitatively different from seven hours on the internet. That difference is what the younger generation will have to deal with.

I agree with that sentiment and I hope that "the younger generation" here in Indonesia will lengthen their attention spans and put down in coherent form (rather than SMS shorthand) their hopes, dreams and opinions.

Some do and there is good writing on a wide variety of topics within the localised hyperspace, so here are a few blogs I've come across or revisited recently.

Ragil links to me but doesn't blog that often.

As he says, reading and/or writing is said as an enlightening activity. I think, it is a profound statement. These two activities were used to be my favourite activities which i lost them somehow along the way. Hence, I do hope that this blog will resurrect that missing piece. So now, I will try to let the idea flowing and sparkling...

Keep at it, Ragil, keep at it.

is ALL about Jakarta with links to important city information such as guided tours , upcoming art exhibitions, theatre and concert gigs, transport news and much more.

Linguistic confusion
I wrote a month or two ago, there are some really good pics of Jakartan life on Kulo Net, but I wasn't sure what language it's in. But now I do.

Just for clarification, “crazy” language used in this blog is Estonian :)

I wonder how Apa si? translates.

Taylor is in Jogja for the summer and is gradually finding himself being sucked in, which is a good sign. And I say this without meaning to sound patronising, but it's good to see an American citizen taking the travel advisories issued by the US embassy with the bucketful of salt they deserve.

Planet Mole is a website about Indonesia by Barrie Lie-Birchall, a freelance writer, who has traveled throughout the archipelago of Indonesia for nearly three decades and has written and published numerous travel articles in magazines and newspapers globally. Barrie has lived in various places in Indonesia immersing himself into the culture and way of life. His greatest passions are his love of life, his love of writing, and of course, Indonesia.

Sounds somewhat like Jakartass, so why no link, Barrie?

After all, Ayen, who says that Jakartass is his fave blog, does. Thanks, A.

And then there's Mat Solo who is in Malaysia but is a friend of Indonesia. That he's given Jakartass a link is not why I'm reciprocating. Nope, it's because we have very similar musical tastes and his reviews of gigs he can get to in Malaysia and we can't hear here make me exceedingly envious. Or perhaps it's his writing about them.

Review Jakartass?
If you want to, please do it here.




6:30 pm |
Friday, July 20, 2007
  Super Kalla
Fragilistic Expiali Dotious ....?

For once (just once?) VP Yosef Kalla has said something sensible. He was talking about the economy this week and let drop this pearl:

"Indonesia would be able to achieve higher growth if it jettisoned its complacent mentality."

He then rabbited on about mastering key economic strengths, whatever they are.

It didn't take me long in today's Jakarta Post to find a wonderful example of "complacent mentality", a follow up to the news of the leak of radioactivity waste at the Kashiwazaki-Kariwa nuclear plant.

Government to go ahead with nuclear power project is the headline of an Associated Press story.

The Indonesian government is determined to build a nuclear power plant despite fears prompted by the damage caused to a Japanese reactor this week, a government official said yesterday.

"We installed a seismograph at Muria Peninsula a long time ago and the results are quite stable," Minister of Energy and Mineral Resources Purnomo Yusgiantoro said, referring to the designated site for the nuclear power plant.

The government could still choose another site if the area in Central Java turned out to be unsafe, he added.

Perhaps Pak Kalla could ask Pak Yus if that would be before or after the earthquake.

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5:00 pm |
Thursday, July 19, 2007
  Waste Not Want

That Japan's (and the world's) biggest nuclear plant in terms of output capacity may be on a major quake fault line is shocking news.

That this was only discovered during Monday's earthquake is somehow worse.

The Kashiwazaki-Kariwa plant shook violently when a magnitude 6.8 earthquake struck Niigata prefecture in northern Japan on Monday morning. The plant was not designed to resist shaking caused by earthquakes of greater than magnitude 6.5.

Late yesterday it was reported that 400 drums of low-level radioactive waste had toppled over during the quake. About 40 lost their lids, spilling their contents on to the ground as they fell. The spillage was one of more than 50 malfunctions the plant experienced in the immediate aftermath of the quake.

All kinds of reasons are being put forward for Indonesia needing nuclear power stations and yet, as I've consistently argued, there is not one country which has solved the fundamental problem of how to dispose of the highly dangerous waste which is the by-product. Not one.

The following recent stories from Nuclear Waste News, an industry publication, demonstrate this.

The Canadian government has directed its Nuclear Waste Management Organization to begin searching for a long-term storage site for spent nuclear fuel, but it acknowledges that that could take several years.

France's nuclear-safety authority, known as ASN, has concluded that, if the nation's large volumes of depleted uranium are eventually considered to be nuclear waste, it would require substantial modification to a deep repository for the country's spent nuclear fuel.

The U.S. Energy Department is seeking a public relations firm to develop a communications and public outreach plan for the high-level nuclear waste repository being planned at Nevada's Yucca Mountain. The solicitation process is being conducted by DoE's online portal.

Whichever firm gets appointed will have a nigh on impossible job if they also have to explain away the following mishaps:
And from elsewhere in the world:
Finally, how about corrupting ancient rights?
And that is the core of my anti-nuclear stance. Allow me to re-emphasise that NOT ONE country has solved the problem of nuclear waste disposal, least of all those highly technological countries such as the Good Ol' U.S.of A, the UK, France and Japan.

The one glimmer of hope that I have here is that Indonesians have access to better education facilities than Australian Aborigines, and are rapidly learning how to exercise so-called democratic rights. I can't see that a nuclear industry PR campaign would succeed here.

That Indonesia's proposed nuclear plant may be on a quake fault line is largely irrelevant.




9:30 am |
Wednesday, July 18, 2007
  I Said It First

Or did I?

When, last month, I posted my futuristic piece on Jakarta some hundred years hence, I really didn't expect some of my predictions to (have) come through so quickly.

I didn't know, for example, that there is an underwater restaurant in the Maldives, which was actually built fairly locally - in Singapore. (Pictures here.)

Nor did I expect that my suggestion that the seawall defences be improved to be taken up so quickly by hydrologists.

Higher than usual tides flooded parts of North Jakarta's Muara Angke district in mid-June, inundating houses and destroying the existing retention wall there.

"Climate change has prompted unpredictable cyclones that, when combined with regular tides, create surges of waves," naval hydrologist Lt. Col. Rosyid said on the sidelines of a seminar. "Like it or not, only higher sea walls combined with a proper drainage system could protect waterfront areas from such a threat."

The State Ministry for the Environment has also warned that rising sea levels caused by global warming could put parts of the city underwater by 2050. The ministry's report predicted world temperatures would rise by up to four degrees Celsius and sea levels would rise by between 18 cm and 58 cm by 2100.

Well, Jakartass predicts that the north coast of Jakarta will be under a lot more water than an extra 58 centimetres in one hundred years time. Let me know if I'm right, will you?

What I also predicted and got only slightly wrong was that Jakarta would be a megacity with a mega name.

Today, in the Post, you can read the following:

The House of Representatives yesterday endorsed the Jakarta Administrative Law which tasks the government with overseeing the management of integrated spatial planning in Greater Jakarta.

Greater Jakarta is defined as Jakarta, Bogor, Depok, Tangerang, Bekasi, Punjak and Cianjur, an incorporated area to be known as Jabodetabekpunjur.

And what did I say?

Jabadebekoboggertangarpong, (abb. Japong), (was) once variously known as Jakarta, Batavia, Depok, Bekasi, Bogor, Tangerang and Serpong.

So I missed out Cianjur, which is not so far from Bogor to the south, but they have missed out Serpong, some 40 kilometres to the east, where Jakarta's Highland Gathering is held annually.

Puncak, incidentally, is the highland location of the weekend retreats of those businessfolk and politicians guilty of the blinkered short-termism which has seen housing developments built on water catchment areas, thus causing much of severe planning problems, as well as the potable water shortages, which afflict the mega mess that is present day Jakarta.

(For readers interested in Jakarta's urban woes and efforts to improve the lives of its citizens, I heartily recommend a blog new to me by Deden Rukmana, Assistant Professor of Urban Studies at Savannah State University, Savannah GA 31404 USA. Indonesia Urban Studies aims to "stimulate discussion on any urban problem in Indonesia.")

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11:30 am |
Tuesday, July 17, 2007
  Ten Top Trivia Tips about Jakartass!
  1. Jakartass can fly at an average speed of fifteen kilometres an hour.
  2. Devoid of his cells and proteins, Jakartass has the same chemical makeup as sea water.
  3. If you keep a goldfish in a dark room, it will eventually turn into Jakartass.
  4. If you drop Jakartass from more than three metres above ground level, he will always land feet-first.
  5. In his entire life, Jakartass will produce only a twelfth of a teaspoon of honey!
  6. Twenty-eight percent of Microsoft's employees are Jakartass.
  7. Jakartass, from the movie of the same name, had green blood.
  8. Michelangelo finished his great statue of Jakartass in 1504, after eighteen months work.
  9. The military salute is a motion that evolved from medieval times, when knights in armour raised their visors to reveal Jakartass.
  10. Scientists believe that Jakartass began billions of years ago as an enormous ball of dust and gas.
[I did say I'm busy. For more trivia, go here.]


5:00 am |
Monday, July 16, 2007
I'm Busy


6:30 pm
Thursday, July 12, 2007
  They seek him here ...

and they seek him there, but no-one seems able to find the superman once known as He Who Must Be Obeyed.

For years he carefully guarded the ciizens of Indonesia, and a few other countries such as Timor Leste. He ensured this by giving the military powers which were less extrovert than before. Instead of organising a minor konfrontasi with neighbours, which was a pattern developed by his predecessor, the military organised activities for the villagers scattered throughout the archaepeligo of the Territory of Native Indonesia (TNI).

Furthermore, His benificence extended to the protection of the country's wealth. This was accomplished by the establishment of a network of non-profit making organisations known as yayasans.

Unfortunately, in 1997 He fell very ill and he was unable to oversee the nation and its wealth as once before, so the following year, at the request of many of us who were concerned that He was doing more than was good for His health - and ours, it must be said - He departed, sadly.

Little has been heard of Him since then apart from a few visits to the doctors and the weddings of quite a few of His celebrity friends. Periodically His successors have decided that they are capable of managing those yayasans, but in their hearts they know that they lack His charisma.

Thus Sonny Boy's team of experts have decided to court him civilly to ask if he would be so kind as to allow SBY to look after the US$1.5 billion which the yayasans have been guarding so carefully. This is something the citizens, who elected Sonny Boy, want him to do.

However, there is a major problem in that the whereabouts of He Who Used To Be Obeyed are unknown. Furthermore, it is feared that after ten years, aging may have altered his appearance. So this is where I come in.

Jakartass has, at great expense - $99 until July 15th - used the facilities of PhoJoe who can take an uploaded portrait taken some years back and give you back an approximation of what that person would look like now.

And I think they've done a good job.

Do you?




9:00 am |
Tuesday, July 10, 2007
  Indovision has a lack of vision

The saga of paying Indovision continues ~ see here, here, here, here, and here for the history. This month's bill has arrived informing us that previous methods of paying finished on June 15th with the closure of two bank accounts. Of course, there's no information on the bills about the new arrangements. Being a methodical type of guy, I figured that an approach to their call centre might make sense and spare us stress. And they promptly replied:

Dear Jakartass,

You are pleased to find attached file consist of our current method of payment.

No I most definitely am not!!!

I've moaned often enough about the poor connections through our ISPs here, so expecting me to download more than 2mb of instructions about paying a monthly bill is really taking the piss. What's more, each email has two.pdf attachments which are exactly the same !!! (Thankfully, AvirMail enables me to delete them from the server.)

My bank, Permata Bank, is the enforced amalgamation of a number of fairly good banks. The only allegations against two of them, Bank Bali and Bank Universal, came about because of the dirty tricks from the Suharto clan who were trying to snatch them from the controlling families in pre-krismon times. They were efficient and customer friendly then, but now?

Can I pay Indovision through a Permata Bank ATM?

Can I expletive!!!




9:30 am |
Monday, July 09, 2007
  Big Card, Small Brain

In today's Jakarta Post there's a fullpage ad which I've just realised is a regular weekly waste of space. Today was the first time I'd bothered with it, but then I always need something to read for my morning ritual. It's supposedly a 'Hotels Supplement' but is actually an advertorial for MasterCard ~ and a lavatorial for me.

With MC you gain exclusive access to a world of opportunities and wonder. Now you can start packing for that non-stop shopping spree in Hong Kong.


But there's more. Empy Effendy has written a column which simply beggars belief with its utter vacuity.

Sometimes when travelling, a friend might ask, "Why should we stay at a luxury hotel and spend hundreds of dollars when we can still get a good night's sleep at a budget hotel?"

Luxury hotels definitely offer many advantages compared to budget hotels. For instance, one difference that everyone can see is the type of guests.

At a budget hotel, guests are likely to wander around in the corridor outside your room at 2 a.m. and talk in booming voices after uncontrolled intake of beer.

That of course is unlikely to happen when you stay at a five-star luxury hotel because the guests consist of more educated people. And they get drunk on wine instead of beer.

Yep, that's Jakartass, a complete moron who prefers beer to wine.

Want more?

When you visit Singapore or Hong Kong, you can explore the town much easier if you stay in a luxury hotel. Most luxury hotels are located in the heart of the city.

Whereas when you stay in a budget hotel, well, you might not know where the hotel is located because you are too afraid to go outside.

Well if staying at a luxury hotel means having to put up with idiots like this columnist, who I think should be called Empty Offendy, then guess where I'm going to stay the next time I go exploring in Singapore.




10:00 am |
Sunday, July 08, 2007
  Cultural Clashes

In the absence of Indcoup who, lucky bugger, can afford a couple of week's offblog in Bali, I think it's important to highlight yet another case of mad Malaysian mullahs. Mullah, incidentally, is a term of respect for Islamic teachers, but the religious police in Ipoh, Malaysia (who) detained a Muslim singer and her band, accusing her of baring too much flesh during a recent performance at a nightclub certainly aren't deserving of any.

Siti Noor Idayu Abd Moin's sleeveless white top exposed a triangle of skin on her back, prompting officials to charge her with "revealing her body" and "promoting vice". This was after they'd breathalised her twice, for zero results, and suggested that the money she earned working in the outlet was duit haram (illicit money) and that her parents, children and future generations would all be tainted for using such money.

In other words, these are thought police.

Unspun, a Malaysian resident here, and Nuraina A Samad, a Muslim lady born in Singapore who challenges the notion of a man's world, both have a photo of Siti which will probably not titillate these gentlemen as they've got their own collection to drool over.

"When I was in the department's headquarters ... my pictures were taken again and again," Siti told Kuala Lumpur's New Straits Times. "When I asked why they needed so many shots they said: 'It's procedure.' Really? I think I was being singled out."

Rainforest World Music Festival 2007

Elsewhere in Malaysia there is a festival next weekend that is sure to upset the uptight gentlemen of Ipoh. Musicians from as far apart as the UK, Afghanistan, Poland and Peru will be performing at the Sarawak Cultural Village in Kuching,

If you love the rich variety of music that we are capable of making, from Tuvan throat singers to English skifflers to the bamboo music of the Kelapang Kelabit upstream forest group, then grab your tickets now and mentally thumb your nose at the idlers of Ipoh.

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11:30 am |
Friday, July 06, 2007
  George Melly R.I.P.

If you read the obituaries and blog comments about George Melly, who died yesterday aged 80, you'll only find kind words.

He was neurotically fastidious in his habits, and there was much that was contradictory in his personality. A compulsive story-teller, he even talked loudly on the riverbank as he cast for trout, a well-known way of frightening the fish. But he recognised the contradictions, indeed revelled in them, and made them his subject.

First and foremost a performer, he loved both to entertain and shock his audience, and though shocking naturally became more difficult as he grew older, he was never shocked himself. His favourite quote in old age was Groucho Marx's "Hello, I must be going". And now he has gone. Open-minded, open-hearted, he will be missed all over Britain by people of every class and kind.

He was a singer of 'revivalist' jazz and early blues (from whence jazz came), a raconteur, an art collector with a love of surrealism, a social commentator, an anarchist and a freethinking social critic who could be extremely sharp and subversive.

I saw him perform a few times in the late sixties with Mick Mulligan's Stane Street Jazzband and had the pleasure of meeting him in 1970. That was the year when teachers went on strike for the first time.

London teachers, supported by their union, were seeking an interim pay rise to reflect the extra costs of living in London. A rise of £132 p.a. was sought; we got £125 which I thought was a failure. But then I was in my early 20's, new to teaching and because I'd spoken some sense at a union meeting (i.e. focus on one issue first: the lack of resources, large class sizes, the need for special education etc. etc. could wait), I had become secretary of the Camden teachers' strike committee. We had to organise around a schedule of selective school closures ~ and mine was never one of them..

A local school, Gospel Oak, being close to Hampstead, had a number of 'celebrity' parents, including George. My memory of George at that time is of his support for a cause he felt was just. And no doubt he was a quiet activist elsewhere, such was his desire for social justice.

There was only one George. Thanks for touching my life.




10:00 am |
Thursday, July 05, 2007
  Difficult Times

It's tough trying to cope with life when the flu gets you. Everything seems to be distorted, especially time.
It also tends to bring you down, so I didn't really want to know that this blog, or rather its name, is only worth $34.

Any offers?


10:30 pm |
Wednesday, July 04, 2007
  What's Are Words Worth? - 2

Urban Development: The building of housing estates and shopping malls on floodplains without adequate infrastructure.

The Tangerang municipal administration intends to form a team to identify unscrupulous developers and take them to court.

Mayor Wahidin Halim said yesterday his desk was already full with reports of housing developers who took off with customers' money and did not complete construction work.

"Moreover, only 11 out of 127 developers had met the contract with the administration to set aside property for public facilities. Sixty five of them have even gone missing.

"Most of the developers only care about profit while stealing from the people."

[Jakarta Post - 4.7.07]

Tangerang may be a separate township but there is no green belt surrounding Jakarta which lets you know when you are entering it. Regular readers may recall that just over a year ago, the mayor and his administration introduced an alcohol ban in line with the phrase chosen to sum up the city's vision for future development -- akhlakul kharimah (Arabic for a religious, responsible and honest way of life).

They also introduced by-laws banning public kissing, including between spouses, and ordering the complete covering up of female flesh. Mind you, as one 'night butterfly' commented, what the eye cannot see, the mind can behold, and her earnings actually increased.

So, Mayor WH, how come you've allowed 89% of your township's developers to rip off your electors? Too busy wasting your time and the taxpayers money eyeing up the ladies?

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9:30 am |
Tuesday, July 03, 2007
  The EU is right

Up until this week, there have been 67 serious incidents involving Indonesian airlines this year. The following 14 involved Garuda Indonesia, the 'flagship' airline.

Jan 1, Garuda Indonesia 735 & Saudi 747, CGK, ground collision while pushback.

Mar 6, Garuda Indonesia, B737 (series UNKN), BKK-CGK. Aircraft RTB'ed to BKK after 30 mins due to problems with Engine number 2 generator.
Mar 7, Garuda Indonesia 734, CGK-JOG. High and fast approach resulted in overrun and subsequent airframe brake up and fire. 22 killed.
WO, L, UD(PE suspected), FA
Mar 14, Garuda Indonesia 733, BTJ-CGK. Aircraft delayed departure after pax boarded due to failure of one of the Engine Drive Generator/Pumps. After a replacement pump was flown in from Jakarta, the aircraft departed to Jakarta.
Mar 28, Garuda Indonesia Unkn, CGK-SIN. GA828 had engine ignition problems on startup resulting in smoke being emitted.

Apr 12, Garuda Indonesia 734, CGK-UPG-MDC. GA602 suffered vibrations on take off. Precautionary visual inspection over Makassar Airport revealed a tyre had burst.
Apr 12, Garuda (Citilink) 733, SUB-AMI. Oil leak at HYD pump caused aircraft stranded.
Apr 12,Garuda Indonesia 744, CGK-JED. Aircraft turned back in Indian airspace after a test missile was launched nearby. Garuda claimed no prior information on the tests which are disputed by Indian authorities.
A bad day, eh?

May 4, Garuda Indonesia UNKN, SUB-SIN. GA842 RTB to Surabaya after pilots heard a noise in the cockpit.
May 16, Garuda Indonesia 734, CGK-SUB. Aircraft returned to apron after noticing problem with the ADI.
May 19, Garuda Indonesia 734, DPS-JOG. Aircraft diverted to Surabaya due to high engine oil temperature and was met with emergency vehicles on arrival. Aircraft departed again after 3 hours.
May 25, Garuda Indonesia 737. Unkn. Aircraft arrived at Jakarta and after a low fly-by, aircraft landed and blocked taxiway. Possibly due to landing gear problem.

Jun 6, Garuda (Citilink) 733, CGK-BTH. Aircraft suffered loss of cabin pressure and diverted to Palembang. A deformity in a cargo door rubber seal was reported to be the cause.

Jul 1, Garuda Indonesia 734, CGK-PDG. Aircraft RTB due to cabin pressure problems shortly after take off. Aircraft repaired after 2 hours on the ground.

This is all a bit technical for me, but if you want more aviation news that you're very unlikely to read in your local rag, then do check out this aviation enthusiasts' site.

ND = No Damage
LD = Light Damage
SD = Severe Damage
WO = Write Off
NEI = Not Enough Information
TO = Take Off
C = Climb
ER = Enroute
AA = Airfield Approach
RA = Runway Approach
L = Landing
G = Ground.
PE = Pilot/Crew Error
AE = ATC Error
Wx = Weather
EF = Engine Fire/Failure
SF = Systems Failure
FIT = Flight Into Terrain
CA = Criminal/Terrorist Action/Security Concern
OE = Other Error
UD = Undetermined
FA = Fatal Accident
NFA = Non-Fatal Accident
SI = Serious Incident
LI = Light Incident
EOC = Event of Concern
NE = Non Event

Of the 67 incidents, (just) 2 involved Indonesian air force planes, and 1 each of a crop spraying plane, a flying school plane and a helicopter.

This is a partial list of those airlines involved in serious incidents:
8 Sri Wijaya
8 Batavia
6 Mandala
6 Lion Air
4 Adam Air
3 Indonesia Air Asia
2 Pelita Air

Strangely, Garuda is in Category 1, the best, according to the Indonesian Transportation Ministry whilst Jatayu, which was Category 3, the worst and hence grounded, has no incidents recorded this year.

Go figure.

Apart from the fatal accidents involving Garuda and Adam Air, perhaps the most serious incident this year in Indonesian airspace was this one.

Feb 20, British Airways 744, BKK-SYD, smoke in cockpit prompted mayday and divert to DPS. WAAZ ATC reported did not respond to mayday or mayday relay as expected. No injuries. Source of smoke revealed as cockpit recirculation fan bearing failure.

Air traffic control "did not respond to mayday as expected' ?!?

Words are not enough .......




11:00 am |
Monday, July 02, 2007
  What are Words Worth - 1?

A car crashed into Glasgow airport a couple of days ago and burst into flames. Two men, the driver and his passenger, were arrested, one badly burnt. Most probably this was an attack by fundamentalist Muslim terrorists because the Irish seem into have settled into their prosperity. What's more, they were probably linked to al-Qaida because the intelligence services and the mass media like to say so.

That last sentence is also probably true because the intelligence services in the UK, networked with intelligence services worldwide, were expecting something similar somewhere. And you and I don't have the intelligence to contradict them.

Although, there is, as yet, no definite proof that this wasn't an accident caused, say, by a drunk driver, minds have been set by reports from eyewitnesses who described the two men as being 'Asian looking'.

South Asian? South-East Asian? Indian or Indonesian? Chinese? Mongol? To them black and white folks, all Asians look the same.

Anyway, the burning man is definitely Muslim because he was screaming out "Allah'.

Or maybe it was "Aaaah - I'm in agony".




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