Anas Apriyadi, Bantul – Scores of sets of children’s toy miniature soldiers in Bantul, Yogyakarta, were seized from a number of toy shops by TNI (Indonesian military) soldiers from the Bantul 0729 district military command (Kodim) because they contained communist symbols – pictures of the hammer-and-sickle.
Bantul 0729 district military commander Lieutenant Colonel Tumadi explained that they were using the TAP MPR Number 25/1966 on the prohibition of communist ideas in Indonesia a guide in confiscating the toys.
The TNI carried out the raids after receiving a series of messages about toys with pictures of the hammer-and-sickle that were being sold in shops around Bantul.
“In total there were 27 sets of toys that we secured, we’re still investigating where they obtained the toys from”, said Tumadi on Tuesday November 3.
According to Tumadi, the toys were discovered at the toy shop Madania Toys on Jl. Wahidin Sudirohusodo where three sets of toys were secured. Meanwhile 24 sets were also secured from the toy shops Rajawali, Ngipik, Baturetno and Banguntapan.
The toy sets contained miniature soldiers made from plastic carrying the flags of their respective countries. With a background depicting World War II, quite naturally the toys were available with British, German, Italian and Soviet Union flags.
The toys secured by the TNI were those with the Soviet flag which had pictures of the hammer-and-sickle, the symbol of the communist party that was in power in the Soviet Union until 1991.
Although Tumadi said he understood that they were simply the flags of particular countries, nevertheless communist symbols are banned in Indonesia and action had to be taken.
“Although it was the flag of another country, because it was within our country’s territory, [we] were duty bound to secure them”, he explained.
According to Tumadi, the TNI is still conducting an investigation into the origin of the toys. Although the toys were seized, the traders selling them were only given guidance.
“We will be providing guidance to the toy shop owners so that incidents like this don’t happen again”, he explained.
Tap MPRS XXV/1966: Provisional People’s Consultative Assembly Decree Number XXV/1966 on the Dissolution of the Indonesian Communist Party and Prohibitions on Marxist, Leninist and Communist Teachings
[Translated by James Balowski for the Indoleft News Service. The original title of the report was TNI Sita Mainan Anak-anak Bergambar Palu Arit di Bantul.]