ACCUSATIONS OF ACTUAL TRAITORS IN POWER

Kolom Ibrahim Isa, Saturday, Nov. 28, 2015.

ACCUSATIONS OF ACTUAL TRAITORS IN POWER

 

Reacting on the “IPT-1965” International People’s Tribunal, – 10 Nov till 14 in The Hague, — Vice-Presiden J, Kalla questioned – ” . why the IPT 1965 was held in the Netherlands — even though the Dutch in the past were responsible for the deaths of so many Indonesians. “.

Soe Tjen Marching, Indonesian Human Rights activist and writer, gave JK the right answer, writing in in The Jakarta Globe, a. o :

“. . our vice president must know that the people’s tribunal in The Hague is independent from the Dutch government. In fact, if you want to take the Dutch government to court, you can also do so in The Hague. This is something that has been done — successfully — on behalf of relatives of people killed by Dutch troops in the Indonesian War of Independence.

“Also, the Dutch themselves were not immune from criticism at the tribunal on 1965, with expert witness Saskia Wieringa pointing out that two universities in the Netherlands through their collaboration with institutions in Indonesia, played a role in the mental abuse of victims and supporting New Order propaganda.

* * *

Another hgh-ranking Indonesian official — “. . . the country’s coordinating minister for political, legal and security affairs, Luhut Panjaitan, stated that

” . . . all parties claimed to have been victims of ‘1965’ and that the actual victims may therefore never be known.”

Soe Tjen Marching, gave the following reply: . . . ” Of course this was what the tribunal in The Hague was about: verifying whether the victims’ claims were truthful. The people of the IPT did not intend to prosecute anyone, we were just trying to establish what happened in those dark days of the mid-1960s. It was that simple.”

* * *

Soe Tjen Marching’s article is illuminating. My advice – everybody should read as republish below:
Commentary: Jakarta Globe, 28 Nov 2015


Traitors at IPT 1965 — Is Indonesia Serious?
By SOE TJEN MARCHING

At the International People’s Tribunal 1965, held from Nov. 10 till Nov. 14 in The Hague, Indonesian government representatives were conspicuous by their absence — even though an invitation had been sent to the Indonesian Embassy in the Netherlands a month ahead of time.

Their absence, however, has not prevented some of the country’s most senior government officials from making rather bold statements about the proceedings and those taking part in them. Indonesian officials have thus been criticizing the tribunal without really knowing what they criticized.

Vice President Jusuf Kalla, for instance, questioned why the IPT 1965 was held in the Netherlands — even though the Dutch in the past were responsible for the deaths of so many Indonesians.

But surely our vice president must know that the people’s tribunal in The Hague is independent from the Dutch government. In fact, if you want to take the Dutch government to court, you can also do so in The Hague. This is something that has been done – successfully — on behalf of relatives of people killed by Dutch troops in the Indonesian War of Independence.

Also, the Dutch themselves were not immune from criticism at the tribunal on 1965, with expert witness Saskia Wieringa pointing out that two universities in the Netherlands through their collaboration with institutions in Indonesia, played a role in the mental abuse of victims and supporting New Order propaganda.

Kalla’s effort to try and undermine the IPT 1965 by pointing to the location were it was held simply does not stand to reason. It may temporarily serve its goal of distracting people, but only those who cannot be bothered to investigate the matter further.

Similarly, the country’s coordinating minister for political, legal and security affairs, Luhut Panjaitan, has tried to distract the attention away from the core issue by suggesting that Indonesians taking part in IPT 1965 no longer are real Indonesians — traitors, in effect.

The minister also stated that all parties claimed to have been victims of ‘1965’ and that the actual victims may therefore never be known.

Of course this was what the tribunal in The Hague was about: verifying whether the victims’ claims were truthful. The people of the IPT did not intend to prosecute anyone, we were just trying to establish what happened in those dark days of the mid-1960s. It was that simple.

Therefore it is a pity that no representatives of the Indonesian government attended the proceedings.

 

Sure, there was also the livestreaming online, but sadly the Indonesian military prevented a group of young people in Yogyakarta from watching.

It seems the Indonesian government wanted nobody to hear or see what was going on at the IPT. Could that have something to do with the fabrications contained in the official account of ‘1965’?

At the IPT, each of the victims present was questioned several times to get accurate and consistent statements. At a later stage, the victims’ statements were cross-checked with the accounts of expert witnesses and activists from different countries. The expert witnesses were academics who had done research on this period. Then, all of their statements were compared with the available documentary evidence.

At the end of the tribunal, the judges concluded that there was strong consistency between the various statements from victims, expert witnesses, activists and the documents. Nevertheless, the judges still have to verify the authenticity of the documents, so the final verdict can only be delivered next year.

So Vice President Kalla, Minister Luhut and other Indonesian officials have spoken too soon.

We haven’t broken the law in The Hague, we tried to uphold it. We were doing this by gathering witnesses, data, documents and other evidence, as well as professional and independent judges.

What have Indonesian officials done to investigate this tragedy– except for labeling as traitors those who were trying hard to reveal the truth about the country’s history? Isn’t sustaining a manipulative view of the country’s history a form of betrayal as well? And if so, who is really betraying the best interests of the Indonesian people?

*  Soe Tjen Marching, the British coordinator of IPT 1965, is currently working on am book chronicling the lives of victims from the 1965 anti-communist purge.

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