Dr Nathan Franklin

Dr Nathan Franklin

Dr Nathan Franklin, Lecturer in Indonesian Language and Studies, CDU

Abu Bakar Ba’asyir: Messages to the Masses, from JI to IS

Islamic preacher Abu Bakar Ba’asyir continues to make media headlines around the world despite being in prison.  He has shown a consistent pattern of involvement in or support for militant jihadi organisations aiming to establish an Islamic state governed by shari’ah law.  In pursuit of this objective his activities have included, membership with Darul Islam in the 1970s; a founding member of Jemaah Islamiyah (JI) in 1993; created Jamaah Ansharut Tauhid (JAT) in 2008; and most recently in 2014 he announced his support for Islamic State (IS) and declared an oath of allegiance to its leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi.

Ba’asyir’s activities have led to his imprisonment several times, and in December 2010 he was charged and sentenced to 15 years for funding a terrorist training camp in Aceh.

Ba’asyir’s affiliations with and leadership roles in hardline Islamist organisations match his very public beliefs and rhetoric.

This paper examines some of his religious messages promoting shari’ah law, jihad, and martyrdom, as well as his denunciation of infidels, local law enforcement agencies, Indonesian governments, and rules and laws that violate shari’ah law.  The paper will concentrate on Ba’asyir’s use of the Javanese-style village sermon (pengajian), and include some of his recent verbal and written messages from prison.

Intermediate breakout language sessions

  • Session one: Actor & Object Focus
  • Session two: -Kan Benefactive & Causative

Please note: Intermediate Indonesian is for those with 50 – 150 hours formal/informal instruction in Indonesian.


Dr. Nathan Franklin is an Indonesianist with expertise in Indonesian politics and Indonesian language.  He currently teaches Indonesian at CDU and is coordinator and resident director of the Kupang and Lombok in-country language programs, which are part of the Regional Universities Indonesian Language Initiative (RUILI).  Dr. Franklin’s research interests include Indonesian politics, mainstream Islamic movements, radical jihadi movements, and Indonesian language and culture.  He is a working member of a trilateral project between CDU, University of Nusa Cendana (UNDANA), and University of Mataram (UNRAM) on local governance capacity building in selected districts in Eastern Indonesia with particular reference to the delivery of health and education services.  For more, see Dr Nathan Franklin’s staff profile.