[Marxism] "WW2": interimperialist war to redivide the world

Tom Cod tcod at hotmail.com
Mon Sep 21 13:17:09 MDT 2009

I appreciate where David is coming from but I think here he is giving the Devil more than his due.  An uncle of mine was in the Marines in WW2 out there and was by no means a flaming radical, but told us that he was always troubled by the Australian planters he ran into out there and the way they "ruthlessly exploited" the natives and their overall racist redneck attitude, a set-up that reminded him of the American south or worse.  As to Indonesia, keep in mind that this was a Dutch colony prior to the Japanese taking it and that some Indonesian including Sukarno viewed them as, if not as liberators, then as the lesser evil, something the Japanese pandered to and folks as far afield as Malcolm X picked up on and which is an attitude that it is entirely understandable for them to have had.  I remember really getting into it with a right winger about 25 years ago around the 65 coup/massacre which this guy tried to dismiss on the basis that Sukarno had been a "quisling" for allegedly collaborating with the Japanese during the war.  My response that "at least he didn't collaborate with the Dutch!" didn't seem to register with this jerk.
While I never agreed with the Trotskyist line on World War 2, if there's one area where there so much to debunk this as "the good war" it's the Pacific sTheater which in a lot of ways was a pretty blatant inter-imperialist struggle for colonial domination.  Thus the recriminations later about "who lost China", the latter, meaning the Red Army, only getting limited grudging aid with everyone who had anything to do with that being run out of bourgois politics on a rail as a result during the witchhunt, beginning under Truman.

> From: suarsos at alphalink.com.au
> Date: Mon, 21 Sep 2009 18:14:08 +1000
> Subject: Re: [Marxism] "WW2": interimperialist war to redivide the world
> To: tcod at hotmail.com
> David worte some time ago, regarding World War II
> >>Or the Indonesians? WHY did they welcome British and US troops
> >>then? Was there something WORSE about the Japanese occupation vs the
> >>historic Dutch or US occupations?
> I don't know what Lou said in reply, because when I click on it I get an 
> error message. So I hope this doesn't repeat anything.
> Who says the Indonesian masses welcomed British and US troops? US troops 
> don't really figure in this. It would make more sense to refer to Australian 
> troops. Some Indonesians were indeed pro-western, notablly the followers of 
> the social democracy and the Communists. However the main section of the 
> independence movement tactically collaborated with Japan. Which is not to 
> say that they actually  liked Japanese imperialism, it was all about 
> positioning themselves for independence.
> When the allied troops arrived in Java, there were pitched battles. The 
> biggest was at Surabaya where the British onslaught was extremely bloody but 
> did not crush the independence movement.  Further east the Australians 
> helped install the Dutch butcher Paul Westerling against the will of the 
> people. It's noteworthy that a lot of Australian rank and file soldiers 
> sympathised with the Indonesians and helped where they could. Also that 
> 2,000 or so Japanese soldiers deserted to join the Indonesian liberation 
> struggle, most of them dying in battle. 
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