The efficiency of today’s competitive new digital age has promulgated faster access by social media viewers to lose patience in thirst of more extreme, inspiring forms of persuasion.
And despite their peaceful attempts, the Free West Papua activists have often spread bomb hoaxes to promote their causes by propagating fear to take advantage of the international communities’ sympathy, especially in the Pacific, through disturbing images of alleged violence acts.
On 18 May 2021, they have claimed 40 bombs rained on Puncak Regency. They did not use actual footage but rather an old photo of buildings burning on a previous hoax event on 30 March, this used in an attempt to show credibility to their story.
Previously separatists-terrorist also spread the false news through local media Suara Papua about shooting of 3 women which said to be shot by Indonesian military to seek sympathy. The Kingmi Church of North Ilaga immediately denied and clarified that the separatists’ words are false (15/04/21). On the other hand, head of information – joint defense area command III, Colonel IGN Suriastawa said that separatist-terrorist is supported by political and clandestine fronts including journalists, media, and social media activists who actively spread hoaxes to discredit the government (17/05/21).
Spreading bomb hoaxes to displace the locals has become a flagship scheme for Free Papua terrorists. With the increasing number of refugees, the more chaotic Papua becomes, the stronger the Papua issue is, the more funds flow from foreign donors to the separatists.
Armed separatists used this hoax pattern and refugee drama for the first time after Free Papua terrorists massacred 19 workers building roads in Nduga Regency(01/12/18) to celebrate December 1. Then, to trick the authorities, armed separatists spread a hoax of phosphorus bombs and displaced 37,000 Nduga residents. In the Nduga refugee scheme, Free Papua terrorists refer to ordinary smoke grenades as phosphorus bombs.
British weapons expert Nick Waters clarified that they were ordinary smoke grenades, not chemical weapons. How could Free Papua terrorists equate such small smoke grenades with the phosphorus bombs that ravaged Vietnam in World War II?
Free Papua terrorists deliberately spread hoaxes to exploit public sympathy and the internationalize the Papua issue.
Hoaxes has been proven to have negative impact on Papuans who are currently experiencing fear and uncertainty. To be morally responsible, YTS news urge mass media covering Papua to apply noble principle that are objective and
cover both sides.