Founding fathers legacy on nations building character to strengthen unity

What a precious legacy that we have as a free nation and peoples from our Founding Fathers. Our founding fathers had struggled and made our country and nation free from colonialism. Their actions and measures have internationally recognized and strengthened the joint resistance of any patriotic acts against injustice and colonialism all over the colonialized and deprived countries.

I remember when my country Indonesia organized historic moment not only for Indonesian but also for the World peoples. The history when Arab, Asian and  African countries, including Libya and Indonesia met in Bandung in 1955 and signed Bandung Declaration well-known as Dasa Sila Bandung (Ten Principles of Bandung) after attending the Asian African Conference in Bandung-West Java- Indonesia in 1955.  The leaders have proven with their strong commitment and leaderships to fight until their last blood in order to kick out the colonialism from their land and declared their independence with their peoples convincingly.  Alhamdulillah, their efforts is not in vain. The Leaders of Arab,  Asian, and African were successfully bringing their nations and peoples got their independence.

The current and young generation may not forget this legacy where the leaders of Asian African countries in the 1950s-1955s agreed to sit together in Indonesia after series of diplomatic meetings among Arab, Asian and African leaders to share their concern to fight colonialism and struggle to be independence countries. The 10 principles say:

  • Respect basic human rights and the goals and principles contained in the United Nations Charter (United Nations);
  • Respect the sovereignty and territorial integrity of all nations;
  • Recognizing the equality of all ethnic groups and the equality of all nations, large and small;
  • Not intervening or intervening in other countries’ domestic questions;
  • Respect the rights of each nation to defend itself individually or collectively in accordance with the UN Charter;
  • Do not use the rules of collective defense to act in the special interests of one large country and not do so with other countries;
  • Not taking actions or threatening aggression or using violence against the territorial integrity and political independence of a country;
  • Settling all international disputes by peaceful means, such as negotiations, agreements, arbitration or other peaceful means, according to the choice of the parties concerned in accordance with the UN Charter;
  • Promote mutual interest and cooperation;
  • Respect international law and obligations.

The measures of the leaders at that time have become a golden memory and legacy to their people and their next generation.  The legacy has become integrated part of any peace document that issued by the United Nations and Other Civilized International Organizations. The main contribution of Dasa Sila Bandung has created new order by having more new independent countries from Asian and African continent.  The Bandung declaration 1955 along with other charters such as the establishment of UN and OIC inherited noble aims to eliminate injustice, aggression, and colonialism based on humanity. These document have made world change and made the world has the same vision in protecting peace in the world.

Nowadays, the world still sees many conflicts. The challenges to the world peace seem still enormous. It may be caused by illegal aggression and attitude that have been described by any international documents. It is against any religions teaching voicing social justice and humanity.  This situation seems still become homework for the current leaders and society in order to able to avoid the colonial traps.  Those traps will encroach the noble value of our Founding Father’s legacy and weaken the unity of people covered by any ways and means. The traps endanger sovereignty of the country and make people forget and neglect to protect their own national assets for the welfare of their own nations.

That should inspire us and leaders and peoples of the countries who live now. We should be aware that our independence is not easily achieved by our Founding Fathers. Our Founding Fathers had to fight until their last blood to protect their peoples (baby, children, men and women and elderly) land, air, water and all their resources free from interference and agitation even killing and massacres acts done by the colonials. They fought against agitators who spread hate and disharmony among society.

The situation becomes worse if we and current generation ignore the national legacy. Our ignorance may come from our limitation to have proper information due to many disinformation and hoax. Their access of information and hoax may cause inability to keep the unity of their nation. Other issues may cause this ignorance such as limited access of education and proper economic opportunity in the country. It may happen when there is certain individual or groups who just want to have all assets for their group only and neglecting their own national interest as being enshrined in every noble struggle of their founding fathers.  If it is being felt by certain group of individual, it may arise unpleasant feeling one to another which then make gap among society.  So the social justice is an ideal objective to be applied.

The above cases now are popular among discourse of the leaders in any international meetings. Any leaders of the country shout to support all founding fathers’ legacy. They are shouting for combating injustice and aggression that still exist and done unilaterally by such nation to other nations without ignoring any legal aspect internationally and nationally. Those actions are clearly against humanity.

Once again, the above situation should be a good teacher for us as an individual and as a nation. What will be done today must reflect the heritage of our founding fathers. And this lesson for the present generation and leaders. They have to be aware that they should guard their founding father’s strength character in bringing their peoples and nation free from colonialism and free from clandestine strategy, measures and intention to divide the unity of societies and all public figures who have some followers. And with all respect, this is the homework of our present generation for future generation. Even though the present generation should always be aware that agitation seems always there or here. Therefore, the Unity of our nations is a priority.

In this regards, we should give thanks to all concern that have done under their capacity to protect the unity of their country.  On this occasion, I am as Indonesian should thank to Arab, Asian and African Leaders who attended the Asian African Conference and signed the Bandung Declaration especially and for All their nationals in general, and to any who participate to maintain this legacy alive.

May Allah Subhanahu wata’ala protects our nations from the bad objective and give our present generation feeling of strong brotherhood and unity. Aaameen Ya Robbal Alamin.

Mohammad Ma’ruf
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