I’m sure you’ve probably read it before. But here it is again: the “current” travel advisory on Indonesia issued by the United States of America:
The Department of State continues to urge Americans to defer all non-essential travel to Indonesia. The Department urges Americans who choose to travel to Indonesia despite this warning to observe vigilant personal security precautions and to remain aware of the continued potential for terrorist attacks against Americans, U.S. or other Western interests throughout Indonesia.
Potential for terrorist attacks? Fair enough. But what about the other risks? Like earthquakes. Or unsafe ships, like the one that sank yesterday off Sumatra leaving at least 43 people missing. Or the risk of getting wiped out by flash floods or even, bizarrely, by an oozing overspill of mud.
The US never offers travel warnings in these cases. It’s as if it’s only bad to get killed by a terrorist’s bomb, but if you die for some other reason, then well, that’s actually okay.
And the UK’s “still current as of 23 June 2006” travel warning has this:
Large public demonstrations are being planned in Jakarta and other cities in Indonesia to protest against fuel shortages and impending fuel price rises which will take effect on 1 October.
Personally, I’m much more worried about the really big risks that Indonesia faces. Like deforestation and pollution.
And the fact that acid rain is already occurring in Indonesia:
Acid deposition has already occurred in several Indonesian cities with the pH (acidity) levels of rainwater falling on them over the past five years recorded at between 4.6 and 5.3…
… the cities where we monitored the acid deposition were Jakarta, Serpong, Bandung and Kotoabang.
Great. So this is what we have to look forward to, I guess:
And that’s why people like Avi and myself will continue to visit Bali. Despite what the American govt says.
That explains why I won’t be blogging for the next two weeks or so. Cheers!!!