Named a Best Book of the Year by The Economist
A chilling work of true crime about the midair murder of a human rights activist, set against a riveting political drama in the world’s fourth-largest nation
On a warm Jakarta night in September 2004, Munir said goodbye to his wife and friends at the airport. He was bound for the Netherlands to pursue a master’s degree in human rights. But Munir never reached Amsterdam alive. Before his plane touched down, the thirty-eight-year-old—one of the leading human rights activists of his generation—lay dead in the fourth row.
Munir’s daring investigation of the killings and abductions that occurred over three decades of authoritarian rule by the former president, Suharto, had earned him powerful enemies. Undeterred, Munir’s wife, Suciwati, and his close friend, Usman Hamid, launched their own investigation. They soon uncovered a conspiracy involving spies, a mysterious co-pilot, threats of violence and black magic, and deadly poison.
Drawing on interviews, courtroom observation, leaked documents, and police files, this book uncovers the dramatic murder plot and the titanic struggle to bring the perpetrators of Munir’s death to justice. Just as Patrick Radden Keefe’s Say Nothing did for Northern Ireland, We Have Tired of Violence tells the story of a shocking crime that serves as a window into a captivating land still struggling to shake off a terrible legacy.
Human rights researcher Easton debuts with a chilling account of the 2004 assassination of Indonesian attorney Munir Said Thalib. Munir, who was investigating human rights abuses carried out during the Suharto presidency, was poisoned while on a flight from Jakarta to Amsterdam. Though the Indonesian foreign minister announced that the autopsy had "revealed nothing unusual," the Dutch coroner's report concluded that Munir had died from a massive ingestion of arsenic. Eventually, a pilot traveling on the flight as a passenger was convicted of slipping the toxin into Munir's juice. Drawing on evidence gathered by Munir's family, Easton makes a persuasive case that the pilot was acting on orders from Indonesia's intelligence agency, whose chief refused to cooperate with an official inquiry. To date, no one from the intelligence agency has been held accountable for Munir's death. Easton lucidly unravels the complex history behind the murder and shines a well-deserved spotlight on and how tirelessly Munir's wife and friends have worked to expose the truth. This harrowing account unearths the insidious legacy of authoritarian regimes.