Abu Bakar Bashir is an Indonesian Muslim priest and the leader of the allegedly violent Islamic groups Jamaah Ansharut Tauhid (JAT) and Jemaah Islamiyah. He started the Al Mukmin boarding school when he was young. Bashir used the school to show how strongly he opposed secularism and supported Sharia Law instead. Because he was against secularism, he was sent to Malaysia for a while. Bashir came back to show that he still wanted Sharia Law to be the most important law in Indonesia. He is thought to be connected to Al Qaeda, and he has said that he likes and supports Osama Bin Laden and Saddam Hussein. He has said that the United States and Israel are the “real terrorists” and that the CIA in the United States was behind the terror attacks in Indonesia. Bashir has been caught more than once for being involved in bombings and other acts of terrorism in and around Indonesia. He was found guilty of plotting the Bali attacks of 2002, in which 202 people died. Bashir is serving a 15-year sentence right now because he was found guilty of helping a jihadi training camp.
Early years and childhood
Abu Bakar Bashir was born in Jombang, East Java, on August 17, 1938. His parents were of Hadhrami Arab and Javanese heritage.
Bashir went to the Gontor Islamic boarding school in Ponorogo when he was a child. After he finished school in 1959, he went to Solo, Central Java, to study at Al Irsyad University. In 1963, he got a degree from the same school.
He worked with the Solo Islamic Student Association and was later chosen to be the secretary of the Al-Irsyad Youth Organization. Then, he was chosen to be the President of the Indonesian Islamic Youth Movement and the Indonesian Student Dawah Organization.
His Later Life
In 1972, he and some of his friends started the Al Mukmin boarding school in Ngruki, near Solo, Central Java.
At the time of their initiation, all Al Mukmin did was talk about religion after the midday prayer. Because of the growing need, it became a Madrasah, which is an Islamic school, and then a Pesantren, which is an Islamic boarding school.
Bashir was accused of actively supporting Sharia and promoting an Islamic State. He was arrested on these charges. He was accused of trying to get people to turn against Indonesia’s national philosophy, Pancasila, which supports different religions. He was also accused of not agreeing that Indonesia was a secular country.
Bashir was locked up without a trial in 1978 because he was so against secularism. He was locked up until the year 1982. He was sent to prison again right after he got out. He was linked to the 1985 bombing of the Buddhist temple Borobudur. He ran away to Malaysia to avoid being arrested.
Bashir was in exile for a long time, until President Suharto’s time in office ended in 1998. During this time, he began giving religious lessons based on the Quran and Hadith in both Malaysia and Singapore. He was said to have gotten close to Jemaah Islamiyah, which was said to be a militant Islamic group with close ties to Al Qaeda and the Taliban.
In 1999, when he went back to Indonesia, he became a priest and called again for Sharia Law. He became the godfather of Jemaah Islamiyah during this time.
He started the group Majelis Mujahidin Indonesia (MMI) and was a key member of it. MMI was a new Islamic group that worked to enforce Islamic law in Indonesia.
In 2002, Burks, a translator for the US State Department, tried to put Bashir in charge by pressuring President Megawati to hand him over in secret during a meeting at Megawati’s home. But the second one turned it down.
In 2003, he was officially charged with treason, immigration violations, and giving the Indonesian police false documents and statements about the bombings of Christian churches on Christmas Eve 2000, which killed 18 people. He was found guilty of breaking the law about immigration and given a three-year sentence. However, because he was a good prisoner, he was let out after 20 months.
On October 15, 2004, he was arrested again on charges that he was involved in the August 2003 bombing of the Marriott Hotel in Jakarta. Also, it was thought that he was involved in the Bali bombing in 2002, which killed 202 people.
In March 2005, he was found guilty of being part of a plot that led to the bombings in Bali in 2002. As a result, he was given a prison sentence of two and a half years.
On its Independence Day, the Indonesian government cut his time in prison by 4 months and 15 days. After this, on June 14, 2006, he was freed. His release was well-timed because he put out a book about the event at the same time.
When he got out of prison, he went back to his boarding school, where he was in charge of his spiritual life. He started over with his plans to make Sharia law the law of the land in Indonesia. He even told Australian Prime Minister John Howard that if he didn’t convert to Islam, God would punish him.
Over the years, he has said that he likes Osama Bin Laden and Saddam Hussein. He has also been quoted as saying that he supports Bin Laden in his “true struggle to uphold Islam.” He instead said that America and Israel were the “real terrorists” and that the 9/11 bombings were a fake attack by America and Israel to give them a reason to attack Muslims in Afghanistan and Iraq.
In 2006, he said that it was wrong for the United Nations to put him on their list of international terrorists.
In 2008, he said he wanted to start JAT, or Jamaah Ansharut Tauhid, a new Islamic group in Indonesia. The launch happened at the same time that the Indonesian government was getting ready to put three Bali bombers to death.
Over the years, JAT has been behind many coordinated attacks on civilians, police, and military personnel in Indonesia who were not involved in the attacks.
Bashir said that the attacks of 2002 were done by the CIA (Central Intelligence Agency) and Israel. He said that the bombs were replaced by small nuclear weapons by CIA officials. He went so far as to say that world peace can only be achieved if the US stops fighting Islam and agrees to be ruled by Islam.
In 2010, the Indonesian police said he was involved in terror plans and military training in Aceh. After a four-month trial, he was found guilty of giving money to a jihadi training camp in June 2011. He has been given a 15-year prison sentence.
Personal History and Legacies
We don’t know much about his personal life, except that he has three children: two sons named Abdul Rashid Ridyo Ba’asyir and Abdul Rahim Ba’asyir, and a daughter named Zulfur.
Estimated Net worth