East Timor

George Pennefather poseidon at SPAMtinet.ie
Sun Sep 5 02:19:02 MDT 1999

Hi Gary

Why did Indonesia agree to a referendum in the first place?

Warm regards
George Pennefather

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> The Australian Govt too hesitates although it has been trying to distance
> itself from the ruling clique in Jakarta.  The Labor Party had developed
> very close personal links with the butcher Suharto and since his fall
> has been a new openness in terms of the coverage of what is happening in
> East Timor and in terms of discussion as to what the Australian State
> should do.
> The result is that we are now seeing pictures of the complicity between
> Indonesian military and the armed marauding thugs.  However when Indonesia
> invaded East Timor in 1975 they massacred some 200,00 East Timorese.
> was not one photograph of this posted anywhere in Australia.
> So now there is some openness and doubt and hesitation as to what should
> done.   I think the reason is that no one quite knows what is going to
> happen in Indonesia.  The economic crisis has provided a political crisis
> and this in turn seems to be exacerbating the economic one.  The situation
> could spiral out of control. If only...
> The DSP (Green Left weekly) are calling some rallies next week and I will
> be speaking at least one of these in Brisbane.  But these will of course
> too small. This is when we need a strong Left which would force the issue.
> Nevertheless despite the weakness of the Left the fact of the vote is a
> tremendous boost for progressive forces here.
> regards
> Gary

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