Indonesia

Warwick Kenneth Fry wfry10 at SPAMscu.edu.au
Thu Sep 16 19:51:51 MDT 1999



Alan,

        Nice point, Alan. Those on this list screaming about the
Australian "intervention" seem to be forgetting that this is basically a
UN intervention. Their attention should also be drawn, I think to the fact
that the analogies with the Malvinas and Northern Ireland situation are
almost completely irrelevant. East Timor has almost nothing in common with
the Malvinas, and differs from Northern ireland in that the invervention
there is british - in fact the analogues to the British there are the
Indonesians! Do we sort that one out by demanding a UN presence in
Northern Ireland? It would be interesting to hear the position of some of
our Celtic comrades on this one.

        I think the lack of Asian presence in the UN peacekeeping force is
disappointing, if not usurprising. It is the US/Australian/UK (and
belatedly) NZ axis of the peacekeeping force which should be the topic
under discussion. Definitely a predominantly anglo presence, and (see my
previous post) the same axis which hitherto had blindly supported and
propped up the Indonesian military. (In the name of 'stability' of
course).

        The only bright note is the presence of a Thai commander as the
second in command after the Australian General or colonel or whatever he
is. The Malasians prevaricated, and finally decided to participate. The
Phillinos ? Does anyone remember the actions of the Philipino government
in supporting the Indonesian government oppression of Timorese and East
Timorese activists in the past? They have a presence, I believe, but given
their past record I think giving them a leadership role would be
equivalent to appointing Indonesian proxies and we would be back where we
started. I might be wrong about this, and wouldn't mind being corrected,
but I am drawing on historical experience which seems to be a fovored, if
badly used technique of many posters on this list.

        I do not like the imbalance of the peacekeeping forces. I doubt
that the DSP does either. It is an indication of the clumsiness,
indadequacy and innate racism of our government, security, and foreign
affairs elites. I think this should become the focus of the debate on on
this list. I think it is something that will counter the chauvinistic and
xenophobic tendencies in Australia, if it that issue is given a profile.

        If we want to talk about the UN presence as an intervention (which
the Indonesians do/did) we have to include the Indonesian intervention in
1975, and correctly refer to it as a 'counterintervention', in that
particular discourse.

        And let us not forget the 10000 East Timorese who have been
massacred in the last week or two

                                        Warwick



On Fri, 17 Sep 1999, Alan Bradley wrote:

> Just a curiousity:  apparently China is sending troops as part of the
> 'peace-keeping' intervention.  This will, of course put part of the PLA
> under imperialist command - a most unusual situation.
>
> Alan Bradley
> alanb at elf.brisnet.org.au
>










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