Amrozi bin Nurhasyim
July 5, 1962|
|Died||November 9, 2008(aged 46)|
Cause of death
|Execution by firing squad|
|November 5, 2002|
|This section needs additional citations for verification. (January 2013)|
He was a native of Lamongan, East Java and was the fifth of 13 children. He attended the Al-Mukmin Islamic school founded by Abu Bakar Bashir along with his brothers Mukhlas and Ali Imron. Amrozi was born in Tenggulun, East Java in 1962. His family were strictly religious, following the Wahhabist school of Islam which has its roots in Saudi Arabia. Amrozis' grandfather established the first pesantren or Islamic boarding school in Tenggulun. His father Nur Hasyim taught his sons that Javanese customs were considered heresy under Islamic law and were therefore to be eradicated. Nur Hasyim was involved in the Indonesian independence struggle against the Dutch, often regailing his sons with tales of heroism by his fellow Muslims.
Amrozi displayed little interest in school or religious studies. Police psychiatric reports undertaken after the Bali bombings describe him as "simple" and "shallow" and report that he was easily influenced by others. They describe him as having an immature personality and lower than normal intellectual capacity. Amrozis' brother, Ali Imron, reported that Amrozi was continually in trouble at school and at home, being banned and expelled by teachers and stealing items from his own home and selling them. He only made it to the second year of high school.
At the age of 23 Amrozi married for the first time. He married a local girl. The marriage lasted only two years, producing a daughter. He attempted high school again but dropped out soon after. Seemingly without purpose and lacking direction he began vandalising Javanese graves in his village in an apparent attempt to gain approval from his strictly religious and respected father. He mortified his parents by desecrating the grave of a respected village elder, subsequently spending a week in police custody.
Amrozis' elder brother Muklas was a respected member of a pesantren in Malaysia. Amrozi had not seen him for over ten years. He had been a stabilising influence to some degree in Amrozis' early adult years. Amrozi decided to visit Muklas but was initially shunned and rejected because of his errant ways. He was devastated by this and realised that to become accepted he needed to become a good Muslim. Amrozi ceased smoking and watching movies. He began praying five times a day in his efforts to gain the acceptance of Muklas. Muklas finally agreed to let him stay.
Amrozi was talented with his hands and became the local repairman, fixing cars and mobile phones. By trade he became a mechanic and owned the van used in the Sari Club bombing. It was Amrozi who purchased the explosives.
2002 Bali bombing and trial
His two brothers Ali Ghufron (aka Mukhlas) and Ali Imron were also both involved in the 2002 Bali bombings. Mukhlas is suspected of converting Amrozi to militancy when the two were reunited in Malaysia in the late 1980s. Both of his brothers were also taken into police custody, and Mukhlas was executed with him.
Amrozi was allegedly motivated by his view of American foreign policy, which he deemed to have an imperialist agenda toward the Islamic world.
In an interview with the chief of investigations, General I Made Mangku Pastika, when asked about Amrozi's feelings toward the attack said: "There is no regret at all for him [Amrozi]. Doing his duty to God, he shows no regret. He's very calm, very cool... proud of his activities." About the fact that most of the Westerners who died were Australians rather than the Americans that Amrozi has stated he was targeting, Mr Pastika stated, "He doesn't regret it but he is just unhappy"
Amrozi's seemingly nonchalant demeanour throughout his trial earned him nicknames such as "The Smiling Assassin", "The Smiling Bomber" and "The Laughing Bomber".
Sentence and execution
On 7 August 2003, he was found guilty for his role in the Bali bombing and sentenced to death by firing squad. His execution was delayed for 5 years, due to legal technicalities: the law under which he was convicted was not in effect at the time of the bombing, and it was ruled illegal by the Indonesian High Court in July 2004. Originally incarcerated in Denpasar's prison, he was moved to the high-security prison island of Nusakambangan in October 2005. While in prison, on 12 May 2008, he re-married his first wife, Rahma, in a ceremony which was conducted in his absence in his home village, while remaining married to his current wife.
Together with the two other bombers (Imam Samudra and his brother, Mukhlas) who each received death sentences, he launched a constitutional challenge against the use of firing squads. Amrozi preferred beheading. In October 2008, he remained unrepentant and claimed revenge would be taken for his death.
During the month, his final appeals were rejected and the Attorney General's office announced that he would be executed by firing squad in early November 2008. According to a source in Indonesia's Attorney General Office, the executions were to be done before the end of Sunday, 9 November 2008. This was reportedly delayed from the original plan to allow a representative from the family to identify the body post-execution. From Amrozi's family, his younger brother, Ali Fauzi was sent as a representative of his family.
Amrozi, along with Imam Samudra and Huda bin Abdul Haq were shot at 00.15 local time on 9 November 2008. They were executed by firing squad. Despite his carefree demeanor throughout his trial and incarceration, he was reported to have been pale faced and shaking in the moments before his execution.
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- "Bomb!" cries happy Amrozi (Sydney Morning Herald, August 7, 2003)
- Protesters storm bomber's prison (SMH, October 12 2005)
- BBC Profile: Amrozi
- CNN Amrozi: Bali's 'smiling bomber'
- Bali bombers' execution date set
Neighbour. S, "In the Shadow of the Swords" HarperCollins publishers 2004
Sarah Copland. “Psychological Profiling of Terrorists: A Case Study of the Bali Bombers and Jemaah Islamiyah.” A Report Prepared for the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade: Counter-Terrorism Branch, October 2005.