Forwarded from Nestor (my obsesssion with Indonesia)

Louis Proyect lnp3 at panix.com
Fri Mar 14 13:14:35 MST 2003


Been doing some fast research on the history of Indonesia, and 
particularly on the complex set of events that led to the independence 
of the country.

It was a senior comrade who sparked the search, by remembering the name 
"Tan Malaka" while I was commenting him our exchanges on this list.

Then I realized that no one on this list has mentioned the historic 
record of Indonesian struggle against imperialism. The names of Sukarno 
or Tan Malaka, or the KPI, have seldom appeared, and when they did it 
was more as a ghost from a past forgotten, like some pebbles from the 
Olduvai Gorge.

I think differently. I think that we cannot broach the East Timor issue 
and the general issue of the Malay drama without understanding what 
happened during the struggles for independence (and UNION), the 
respective roles of British, Australian, Portuguese and Dutch 
colonialists, the colonial policies of generating puppett pro-Western 
regimes (such as the Republic of the Maluku), and the permanent policy 
of confronting Indonesians on the basis of their language, religions, 
etc., and the national liberation policies of unification (of which 
Javanese expansionism -a trend that Western imperialism calls 
"Indonesian imperialism"...- was just a single policy and not the one 
espoused by the mass of the fighters for independence).

I also stumbled on a short essay by an Indonesian scholar, delivered in 
Australia in 1995, where he explains that, against what imperialists and 
the Suharto clique wanted everyone to believe, Indonesia was a nation in 
the making and not a nation that could be established by looking at the 
inheritance from the past. I don´t know what bees does this type hold in 
his bonnet, but this approach seems to me more fertile than any amount 
of scrapping in the ethnic, religious, linguistic and cultural 
differences that may pit each Indonesian people against the other. This 
is only for the advantage of imperialists.

I suggest all those interested to do a search in Google, for example. I 
tried "tan malakka OR malaka" timor OR timur.
-- 

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