What is a Student Regiment? Definition and Brief History

What is a Student Regiment – The student regiment or also known as Menwa is a civilian force that has been trained and prepared to defend the Unitary State of the Republic of Indonesia (NKRI) as a form of the Universal People’s Defense and Security System or also known as Sishankamrata.

The Menwa or student regiment is one of the components of Indonesian citizens who have received military training in the student element. Some time ago, Menwa had garnered attention because in the process of training, or also known as Menwa basic education, it claimed lives. Actually what is the Student Regiment and what is its history? Listen to the explanation until the end, ok!

What is a Student Regiment?

The student regiment or abbreviated as Menwa is one of the civilian forces that has been trained and then prepared, so that its members are able to defend the Unitary State of the Republic of Indonesia as a manifestation of the Universal People’s Defense and Security System or Sishankamrata.

Student regiments have also become one of the existing components for citizens to receive military training with student elements in them. The headquarters of the student regiment unit command, generally will be in the tertiary institution of the unit of each member who is a student or female student studying or receiving education on the campus.

Menwa is one of the reserve components of national defense, because they have been given training in military science, such as in the use of weapons, survival or how to survive, military self-defence, battle tactics, parachuting, camouflage, military gymnastics to navigation and other military science training.

Members of the student regiment are referred to as wiras, who are at each tertiary institution to form units that will become a part of the student organization in student activity units or UKM on a campus. Menwa is also given authority and responsibilities that are different from other SMEs and are directly under the authority of the rectorate.

Menwa has a motto, namely “Widya Castrena Dharma Siddha” which comes from Sanskrit and has the meaning of perfection, dedication to science and warrior science.

On this motto, the knowledge that is meant by science in the menwa motto is stated, all kinds of branches of knowledge that members get when they are students.

This knowledge will be used by the wira to pursue his career path in the future without forgetting his main goal and serving the community. Meanwhile, warrior knowledge in the motto is concerned with the souls of officers, knights and leaders and not only skills that can be used for combat or similar activities.

A Brief History of the Student Regiment

From 13 June to 14 September 1959, compulsory training was held for students in West Java. In that period of time, students in West Java then received training, so that students were ready to defend the Unitary State of the Republic of Indonesia together with the TNI with the aim of preventing all threats and being ready to fight using weapons according to the military.

Students who receive compulsory training or walawa are then educated at the Siliwangi Military Command VI. Walawa or students who get compulsory training, then get the right to use the Siliwangi symbol. The walawa were then prepared as reserve officers with the aim that the walawa would be able to support the TNI in the event of a critical situation befalling the Unitary State of the Republic of Indonesia at that time.

On December 19, 1969 in Yogyakarta Bung Karno as the President of the Republic of Indonesia and the Command of the Great Leaders of the Indonesian Revolution at that time, then sparked Trikora. Because of the formation of the Trikora, all Indonesian people welcomed the command from Bung Karno with great fanfare accompanied by the spirit of revolution to seize West Irian, including the walawa who had been trained at that time.

Trikora, which was coined by Bung Karno, contains three things as follows.

  • Extend the Saka Merah Putih (Indonesian flag) in West Irian.
  • Thwart the puppet state of Papua.
  • Organize general mobilization.

Since Trikora resonated, the national vigilance of various factions has grown stronger and peaked until an educational plan emerged, where reserve officers would be present at tertiary institutions.

Then, two decrees appeared from the Siliwangi Regional Military Commander, then on January 20, 1962 the tertiary institution formed a coordinating body with the name of the Preparatory Body for the Establishment of the VI Siliwangi Dam Multipurpose Student Regiment or abbreviated as the BPP VI Siliwangi Dam Student Regiment with four members, namely as following.

  • drg. R. G Surya Sumantri or Chancellor of Padjadjaran University who acted as coordinator.
  • Isrin Nurdin or Vice Chancellor of the Bandung Institute of Technology and serves as Deputy Coordinator I.
  • Kusdarminto or PR Unpar acts as Deputy Coordinator II.
  • Moch Sunarman from PUS PSYAD and at that time served as secretary.
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Then in February 1962, a ten-week Refreshing Course was held at the Main Infantry Regiment, followed by 14 days of training known as the Pasopati Training.

After this training, on May 20, 1962, members of the student regiment or Menwa class of 1959 were appointed as the organic part of Kodam VI/SLW by the Pangdam VI/SLW.

In the four-year work plan, it was stated that the formation of a core cadre was carried out at the beginning of the second semester in the 1962 to 1963 school year. The formation of these cadres also included the formation of a female core cadre. West Java students and female students, especially Bandung, then took part in training in Bihbul, which is where the TNI soldiers were formed. then, this unit from the student Yon as well as from several other colleges and academies was sent to a place under the tutelage of trainers at RINSIL.

On June 12, 1964, a Decree issued by the Coordinating Minister for Defense and Security Components from Dr. A. H Nasution, the TNI General who at that time authorized the Duaja of the Mahawarman Regiment. The Coordinating Minister himself handed over the Duaja, and Garuda Mahawarman was finally officially established and side by side with the Siliwangi Tigers.

Purpose of Establishment of Student Regiment

The Student Regiment is present and included in the ranks of national youth institutions in Indonesia. Menwa’s presence has the intention of being able to galvanize the ‘backbone’ of the nation or students which will lead to life in Indonesia by prioritizing Pancasila and the legal basis of the country, namely the 1945 Constitution.

The purpose of establishing Menwa can be seen from the basis used by Menwa when it was first coined by General AH Nasution. The basis was the intention to be able to contain communist ideas, then during the development of the Menwa organization, SKEP was issued by the Minister of Defense and Minister of Higher Education and Science in 1963 with the SKEP number, namely M/A/20/1963 regarding Implementation of Compulsory Training and Formation of Student Regiments at University. Then, in 1965 another SKEP was issued by the Coordinating Minister for Defense and Security/Kaad and the Minister of PTIP with the SKEP number M/A/165/1965 regarding the Organization and Procedures of the Student Regiment.

Student Regiment Dynamics

In its development, Menwa then experienced ups and downs, where this student organization experienced various kinds of changes and upheavals like other organizations. Changes to the student regiment were made from various sections. Starting from reorganization, repositioning, to re-functioning the organization which was repeatedly carried out, as part of the process of actualization in order to meet and respond to phenomena that occur in the nation and state of Indonesia. The changes that occurred in the student regiment occurred from 1978 until the last, namely in 2000.

One of the upheavals faced by the Menwa occurred in 1944, when students at various universities in Semarang issued their statements regarding their concern that more acts of violence were being committed by members of the Menwa.

Because of this concern, students in Semarang demanded the abolition of Menwa and this demand was also supported by several groups in Cipayung, namely PB HMI, PMKRI, GMNI and GMKI.

This demand arose from students in Semarang, because one of the students at IAIN Walisongo Semarang was known to have been abused by members of the Menwa. Then in 2000, through a referendum, students at IAIN Walisongo rejected the Menwa organization on their campus.

The protest by IAIN Walisongo students was successful, which resulted in several similar protest actions starting to appear in various other tertiary institutions.

Finally, the government also stipulated a change in Menwa through a Joint Decree of the Minister of Defense, Minister of National Education and Minister of Home Affairs to designate Menwa as UKM.

Until October 11, 2000, Menwa coaching as a student activity unit was then handed over to each university. However, the activities carried out by the Menwa are still in collaboration with the TNI Regional Command.

Menwa Historical Review

The student regiment was first formed by General Abdul Haris Nasution during the Old Order. when it was formed, Menwa had the main mission and goal, namely to stem the spread of communism in universities.

With the presence of the Menwa at that time, it was hoped that the real threat posed could wipe out several party organizations based on the PKI with group aliases in universities such as the Concentration of the Indonesian Student Movement (CGMI).

In accordance with the National Defense Act number 29 of 1954, Kosasih on June 13, 1959 then issued a policy and held Soldier Training with the title Battalion Wala 59, this training and battalion which later became the forerunner or origin of the Indonesian Student Regiment was formed.

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At that time, Battalion 59 Wala was also involved in the posse operation, which crushed the rebellion against DI/TII in West Java. Then in 1963, the name Menwa or Student Regiment became known. The validity of this Menwa is stated in the Joint Decree of the First Minister for Defense and Security or Wampa Hankam and the Minister of Higher Education and Science or PTOP regarding the implementation of compulsory training and the formation of student regiments at universities.

Then in 1963 the student regiment was finally formed, in accordance with a joint decision by Wampa in the field of Defense and Security with the Minister of PTIP which came from students who had received basic soldiering training, because of this decision Menwa was formed in various provinces and not only in West Java.

Then in 1967 there were several changes in the main idea which then combined the three forms of DIK HANKAMNAS into one, namely compulsory training for students. Walawa, namely students who have received soldiering training then are voluntary, extracurricular in tertiary institutions with a rector’s recommendation and are selective.

After the evaluation of the Menwa was held in 1972, then although it was increased to Entrepreneurship Education and Reserve Officer Education through a joint decision of three ministers, namely the Minister of Defense, the Minister of Home Affairs and the Minister of Education and Culture regarding the organization of student regiments in order to involve the people in defending the country. Apart from that, the Menwa is also the responsibility of three departments at once, namely the Ministry of Defense and Security, the Department of P and K and the Ministry of Home Affairs whose implementation procedures have been regulated in accordance with the Joint Decree dated January 19, 1978 regarding the Guidelines for Implementing Student Regiment Organization Development.

Duties and Functions of Menwa

Following are the duties and functions of the student regiment as a component in national defense which has the task of planning, compiling and preparing all the potential possessed by students in each province which is at level one to carry out its function as a component of the state reserves. Student regiments, broadly speaking, have the following tasks and functions that must be fulfilled.

  • As one of the components in national defense, it has the task of preparing, compiling and planning all the potential possessed by students in each first-level regional province, in order to carry out the Menwa function as a state reserve component.
  • As one of the components in community protection, Menwa has the duty to prepare, plan as well as compile all the potential of students in each province at level one, in order to carry out its function as Linmas.
  • As a special UKM that is directly under the rectorate of a tertiary institution, Menwa has the duty to assist in building student awareness of defending the country, as well as the smooth running of other activities and programs at the university.

In addition to the three tasks that must be carried out and fulfilled by members of the student regiment, Menwa also has the following functions:

  • Preparing students to become citizens who have faith and have morals and abilities in the academic and intellectual fields in the fields of science, technology and art, and have insight into defending the country who are able to develop their own potential as one of the components of national defense, the Menwa participates in realizing and maintaining all areas within the Unitary State of the Republic of Indonesia.
  • Help improve and foster the attitude of defending the country and the values ​​of love for the land in society.
  • Assist TNI units to carry out certain security development processes in accordance with applicable regulations in Indonesia, namely laws.
  • Help local government to carry out the functions of Linmas.
  • Help overcome the consequences of natural disasters with evacuation and provide humanitarian assistance.
  • Help find and help in the event of an accident.
  • Together with other students, Menwa helps create life in an orderly and peaceful social environment.

Those are the seven functions and duties of the student regiment as one of the state reserves.

So, regarding the student regiment or Menwa, is Sinaumed’s interested in digging deeper? Or does Sinaumed’s want to know what SMEs are in college or other things related to universities?