Death by Firing Squad

Its the talk of the town right now. Tonight, just after midnight, nine death row inmates will be taken from their cells and lead to the execution sight. There, they will be blindfolded, and tied to a stake in the ground. They have the choice to stand, kneel or sit, their hands and feet will be tied together. Each prisoner has twelve marksmen aiming rifles at their heart. They will be wearing white clothes, with a black spot over their heart, to help the marksmen to hit the right spot. The coffins and crosses are already prepared. Their fate is sealed.

I wonder what is going on in their heads right now, as the end draws near. I hope they have come to terms with their fate and can let go peacefully. I don’t think we should fear death, the way they are going to die is horrific, but death itself, perhaps not.

Watching all this unfold, the fears that are racing through my mind are very selfish. I am haunted by fears for my own children. When I look at the photos of those two Bali 9 boys when they were first arrested, they were not much older than my boys are right now. They were young and foolish when they committed the crime. Yes, they broke the law, and deserve to be punished. They have already served ten years in jail. But do they deserve to die such a violent death?

What I fear is, despite being reformed citizens, doing so much good within the prison community, despite the prison governor vouching for them, and pleading their case, the president of Indonesia will not back down. It is black and white, and he is showing absolutely no mercy.

That’s my fear. Will my boys fall in with the wrong crowd, or be in the wrong place at the wrong time, and be unable to argue their case? Will they face the same dead end? I love Bali, but there is a very frightening side when you are a mother of teenagers. My boys are starting to spread their wings, and explore new things. I want to hold them close, and never let them go, and yet, I know I need to cut the ties and let them fly…..

27 thoughts on “Death by Firing Squad

  1. Thank you for this post. Among those who will be executed is Mary Jane, a filipina, allegedly framed up for drug trafficking. I don’t know the whole story though but I think that, as you’ve mentioned, serving their sentence in prison and serving the prison community, I believe that is enough to ,somehow, lessen the penalties for them. Death penalty has been lifted here in the Philippines. There are both the positive and negative impact, of course. I believe that a person has a choice to commit a crime. I believe that they should be afforded due process in all circumstances. I’m not sure if Mary Jane was given due process. I’m not familiar with Indonesian law. I understand your fear for your boys. I hope that the good values you teach them will forever remain in them and they just keep this in mind in whatever situation they are in.

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    • I was reading about Mary Jane today. Not much has been said about her here, as the focus has been on the Bali 9 boys. I was not aware of her story, and it seems she is a victim of wrong place wrong time. Its so sad, my heart bleeds for the families that have been destroyed. I too hope my boys have absorbed some of my teachings, and will go out and make wise choices

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  2. I understand how you fear for your children’s future and I sympathise with you in that regard. However I have no sympathy whatsoever for the two criminals from Australia facing execution. Their drug trafficking actions have brought misery and pain to countless families here in Australia. They knew the Indonesian penalties for trafficking and chose to ignore the risks. I support the Indonesian President and his strong unyielding stand. I hope his firmness sends a message to others contemplating bringing drugs into our country. They are criminals, not ‘poor boys’.

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    • I totally agree, they deserve to be punished, but by firing squad?? I support taking a strong stance and drug traffickers know what they are getting themselves in to. Indonesia does not hide the fact that punishment is by death. These guys are guilty, but how many are not?

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    • If you compare though the amount of drugs they smuggled out of Indonesia (so I believe that Australia should have actually be the country to take care of it and not Indonesia) to offenders that got caught here in Australia, then the punishment is just totally over the top (which it is in any case). Let them rot in prison and I mean rot. But what has been done to them and to their families is not right. Execution is not right. The way they played with their minds is not right. That’s torture on a entirely different level.

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  3. Interesting to hear your perspective from Bali. It has been heart breaking to follow the case of Andrew and Myuran. I think the fact that they are reformed is irrelevant to the case against their imminent, barbaric death. The fact that they, and the 7 others are humans is reason enough for their lives to be respected, even when they are deserving of some kind of punishment for the crimes they committed.

    I remember a particularly poignant news article some months back that showed them as young boys in their school uniforms. It was heart breaking, and I get what you mean about how it raises a fear about the kind of choices your own children will make. I hope your boys make wise decisions and lead happy, fulfilling lives.

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  4. All we hear about is these two, what about the seven others that have to spend the rest of their lives in an Indonesian prison because they where coerced into strapping the drugs to their bodies. What about the families of the seven that are still in jail because these guys did have the guts to carry the drugs themselves. And what about the families that suffer due to the drugs that are brought into Australia by people like this. They knew that if they where caught what the penalties would be and instead got others to carry the drugs for them and hoped that they would get away.

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    • I agree, the focus should not be on these 2, the media has gone crazy over this. My focus is not on them in particular, but on the death penalty in general. These guys are guilty, and deserve punishment, but do they deserve such an awful death?

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  5. Teenagers brains aren’t even wired up correctly, so I understand your worry and hope your sons stay on the straight and narrow. Firing squad sounds horrific, but so is electrocution and lethal injections. Many mess ups there too. I live on a ranch and death by a well aimed weapon is very swift. I pray death comes swiftly for these criminals and that they are at peace with themselves and with God.

    Well done post.

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    • Bali is Himdu, but Indonesia is dominantly Muslim. The executions did not take place in Bali as. Governor requested they keep Bali peaceful. The prisoners were flown to a small island off Java. the firing squad consists of young men that have been trained for the job. it’s awful.

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  6. There are so many things that are buzzing around my head to say about this… It makes me so incredibly sad and as an Indonesian quite ashamed. These deaths won’t do anything to put an end to drugs in Indonesia. The government is beyond hypocritical in their stance. Don’t even want to think about the implications of this for Indonesians now and in the future. I’m sorry to say but the people in Indonesia will probably forget about this in a month’s time; but people elsewhere will not. Death is not a game of politics but in this case it has been treated as such. So disappointed…

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