‘Fifty years since Indonesia coup: Honest History miscellany’, Honest History, 1 October 2015(updated)
On the night of 30 September-1 October 1965 anti-communist forces in Indonesia quelled an alleged nascent coup attributed to the Indonesian communist party, the PKI. The coup was important for Australia because, after a period of settling down, it replaced the Sukarno regime, which seemed a threat to Australia and to the stability of the region, with the more pro-Western Suharto regime which lasted for 30 years. Communism is still banned in Indonesia.
The anniversary has produced a number of articles and resurrected some others:
- Robert Cribb in The Conversation looks at the circumstances of the failed coup and what happened next, noting that a communist Indonesia was an unlikely prospect, which made the mass killings that followed the coup even more tragic.
- Hamish McDonald in the ANU’s New Mandala looks at some recent revelations from Chinese archives which may shed some light on the background to the coup.
- Michael Vatikiotis in Fairfax says the mass killings after the coup have left a stain in Indonesia.
- Joshua Oppenheimer made a movie a few years ago about the coup and the aftermath.
- Karim Najjarine and Drew Cottle in 2003 wrote about how Australia’s then Department of External Affairs responded to and how the ABC reported the coup – and afterwards.
- A Humphrey McQueen article from 1990 looks at evidence of American and Australian involvement in and attitudes to events in Indonesia.
- Finally, there is the book and the film, The Year of Living Dangerously, starring Mel Gibson, Sigourney Weaver and Linda Hunt, before the years condemned.
- Plus, there is Peter Symonds on the World Socialist Web Site with a couple of other links, too.
- And, Asvi Warman Adam on the longer-term implications for Indonesia.