Oemar Said Tjokroaminoto

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Oemar Said Tjokroaminoto
HOS Tjokroaminoto, 20 Mei Pelopor 17 Agustus, p43.jpg
Born (1882-08-16)16 August 1882
Ponorogo Regency, East Java, Dutch East Indies
Died 17 December 1934(1934-12-17) (aged 52)
Yogyakarta, East Java
Citizenship Indonesian
Title Founder and chairman of Sarekat Islam
Spouse(s) Suharsikin
Children 5

Raden Mas Hadji Oemar Said Tjokroaminoto (August 16, 1882 – December 17, 1934),[1] better known in Indonesia as H.O.S. Tjokroaminoto, was an Indonesian nationalist. He became one of the leaders of the Islamic Trade Union (Indonesian: Syarekat Dagang Islam), founded by Samanhudi, which became Sarekat Islam, which they both co-founded.[2][3]

Early life[edit]

Tjokroaminoto was born the second of twelve children,[1]:12 in the Ponorogo Regency as the son of RM. Tjokroaminoto (district chief of Kleco), grandson of RMA. Tjokronegoro (regent of the Ponorogo Regency), and great-grandson of Kyai Bagus Kasan Besari of Tegalsari pesantren. According to his genealogy, his education was directed towards civil service.

After graduating in 1902 from OSVIA (Dutch: Opleiding School Voor Inlandsche Ambtenaren), a school for indigenous civil servants, in Magelang, the then-highest civil servant education institution, he worked as one in Ngawi for three years from 1902 to 1905).[1] He moved to Surabaya, where he met Samanhudi, founder and leader of the Islamic Trade Unions (SDI).[1] At night, he attended Burgerlijke Avond School (BAS) for some years. After graduating, he worked in a sugar refinery (1907-1912). He wrote for Bintang Soerabaja daily and became a staff assistant.

Holding the title as "King of Java without a Crown" (Dutch: De Ongekroonde van Java) by the Dutch, Tjokroaminoto was one of the pioneers of the movement in Indonesia and a teacher of the great leaders of Indonesia. His political ideas also gave birth to various ideologies of the Indonesia at that time, where he tutored students in his own household, such as: Semaoen, Alimin, Musso, Sukarno, Kartosuwiryo, and even Tan Malaka. He was the first to refuse to submit to the Netherlands. After he died, the colors of the Indonesian movement were developed by his students, the socialists and communists embraced by Semaoen, Musso, and Alimin.

One of his most famous quotes was "High-level science, pure-pure tauhid, smart finesse" (Indonesian: Setinggi-tinggi ilmu, semurni-murni tauhid, sepintar-pintar siasat), depicting the atmosphere of Indonesian struggle in its time which required the three aforementioned abilities of a freedom fighter. Of the various students he liked most was Sukarno until he married Sukarno with his daughter Siti Oetari, Sukarno's first wife. His message to his disciples was "If you want to be a great Leader, write like a journalist and talk like an orator". These words influenced his disciples to make Sukarno shout every night to learn the speeches to make his friends, Musso, Alimin, SM Kartosuwiryo, Darsono, and others woke up and laughed to watch it.

Formation of Islamic unions[edit]

Sarekat Dagang Islam[edit]

Samanhudi had founded Sarekat Dagang Islam (SDI) or the Islamic Trade Union, in late 1911, in Surakarta. Tjokroaminoto was asked to prepare needed regulations for the organization and to handle the management. The statute was prepared and notarized in Surabaya on 10 September, 1912.

Sarekat Islam[edit]

At Tjokroaminoto's suggestion, the word trade (Indonesian: dagang) in the organization's name was removed and SDI became Sarekat Islam (SI) or the Islamic Union.[1] Its chairman was H. Samanhudi, while Tjokroaminoto became chairman. A few days later, its statute was sent to Governor-General to be legalized as a corporate body (Dutch: rechtspersoon).

A central committee was formed with Samanhudi as chairman and Tjokroaminoto as vice-chairman. In explaining organization's aim, Tjokroaminoto stated that SI would not oppose the Dutch East Indies government. For the organization's interest, he and other managers went to the then Governor-General Alexander Willem Frederik Idenburg on 29 March 29, 1913. Idenburg stated that for public importance (Dutch: algemeen belang), SI's legalization couldn't be granted, but local Islamic unions can be granted corporate-body status.

The membership of SI rapidly increased, to about two and a half million.[1]

Centraal Sarekat Islam[edit]

Because of rapid development of local Islamic unions, it was necessary to establish a central Islamic union coordinating them. In 1915, the Central Islamic Union or Centraal Sarekat Islam (CSI) was founded with Tjokroaminoto as its chairman, Abdoel Moeis as vice-chairman, and Samanhoedi as honorary chairman. Since then, Tjokroaminoto was continuously chairman or a member of the SI board of administration until his death.

The first CSI national congress, simulatenously being the third SI congress, during his chairmanship was held in Bandung in June, 1916. The usage of word national signified the issue Tjokroaminoto had voiced, which was the necessity of unity of all Indonesians. SI gained acknowledgement of its power with the inauguration of Tjokroaminoto and Abdoel Moeis as members of the newly opened Volksraad in 1918.

SI under Tjokroaminoto progressed, but inner opposition arose, while the colonial government's trust decreased. The hardest challenge came from Marxist/Leninist faction led by Semaun, who faced off against Tjokroaminoto. Eventually the Marxist–Leninist faction broke off and formed Red SI, which later became the Communist Party of Indonesia.

In 1921, Tjokroaminoto was arrested for the charge of assassination by SI-afd. B[clarification needed] in Cimareme, Garut, West Java. He was released around 9 months later without trial in August, 1922.

Partai Sarekat Islam[edit]

CSI became weak, and its name was changed to Partai Sarekat Islam (PSI) or the Islamic Union Party on February 1923. Tjokroaminoto made an effort to unite the outer Javanese groups.[clarification needed] After propaganda attacks were sent, insurgency broke out wherever, until he and Abdoel Moeis was forbidden to visit some areas. In that time, Pan-Islamism was launched. Tjokroaminoto and Mas Mansoer performed Hajj.

The political suggestion of hijra or "migration" with the non-cooperative attitude to the colonial government was eventually accepted by Congress, which caused Tjokroaminoto's refusal when he would be elected as Volksraad's member in 1927. The Ulema Committee was founded to discuss Tjokroaminoto's controversial Qur'anic interpretations in 1928.

Partai Syarikat Islam Indonesia[edit]

Later the PSI was changed to Indonesian Islamic Union Party or Partai Syarikat Islam Indonesia (PSII) in early 1929. There was a confrontation between the nationalist Soekiman and the religious Tjokroaminoto that led to Soekiman's departure to form a new party, the Indonesian Islamic Party or Partai Islam Indonesia.

Death[edit]

After the 20th PSII Congress in Banjarmasin in May 1934, Tjokroaminoto was sick and died in Yogyakarta in 17 December, 1934. His position in PSII was succeeded by his brother Abikoesno Tjokrosoejoso.

In popular culture[edit]

A film titled Teachers of the Nation: Tjokroaminoto (Indonesian: Guru Bangsa: Tjokroaminoto) has been made by raising part of the story of Oemar Said Tjokroaminoto. The film, produced in 2015, is directed by Garin Nugroho, with the main character as Reza Rahardian.[4]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d e f Mahawira, Pranadipa (2013-01-01). Cinta Pahlawan Nasional Indonesia: Terlengkap & Terupdate (in Indonesian). WahyuMedia. pp. 12–13. ISBN 9789797957513. 
  2. ^ Tarling, Nicholas (2000-01-28). The Cambridge History of Southeast Asia. Volume 2. Cambridge University Press. p. 236. ISBN 978-0521663717. 
  3. ^ Ooi, Keat Gin (2004-10-13). Southeast Asia: a historical encyclopedia, from Angkor Wat to East Timor. Volume 3. ABC-CLIO. pp. 1180, 1226, 1334. ISBN 978-1576077702. 
  4. ^ "Coming Soon Guru Bangsa Tjokroaminoto". Tjokro Movie (in Indonesian). Archived from the original on 2017-04-21. Retrieved 2018-07-16. 

Further reading[edit]

  • Mirnawat. Kumpulan Pahlawan Indonesia Terlengkap (in Indonesian). Cerdas Interaktif, 2012. ISBN 9789797883430.