East Timor and West Papua resistance (letter)by Lee NightingaleNews Weekly
, May 7, 2005
I have been a long-term reader of News Weekly
and a supporter of the National Civic Council.
Two of your recent articles - one by Peter Westmore (News Weekly
, March 26, 2005), the other by Raymond Watson (News Weekly
, April 23, 2005) - were incorrect.
Both made the statement that the East Timorese resistance leadership, prior to 1999, was based in Australia. This is incorrect because the supreme commander of the East Timorese resistance was based in East Timor and was the commander of Falantil. The East Timor campaign was a global campaign.
Both made the statement that the current West Papuan leadership is based in Australia. This also is incorrect because the supreme commander of the West Papuan resistance is based in another country, not Australia. The West Papuan campaign is a global campaign.
How I know this is because I was involved in the East Timorese struggle for about 10 years and have been involved in the West Papuan struggle for about five years. I can also verify my information through my contacts.
Indonesia should not invade, occupy, murder and exploit lands and people, such as North Borneo, East Timor and West Papua, which have a separate legal status to, and are not part of, Indonesia (which was formed in 1949). Indonesia has created these problems herself.
The agreement signed by Indonesia and Holland in 1962-63 was never enacted or honoured by Indonesia which chose to invade West Papua and kill the native population in large numbers.
It is up to Indonesia to honour this agreement if a peaceful solution is to be reached.News Weekly
, the Australian Government and the Opposition should all be leading the charge to see that justice and not injustice is done to our neighbours in West Papua who hosted General Douglas MacArthur and 500,000 US soldiers during World War II and largely opposed the imperial Japanese advance on Australia.(Mr) Lee Nightingale,