Film Merah Putih

Aug 24th, 2009, in IM Posts, Opinion, by

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107 Comments on “Film Merah Putih”

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  1. avatar Berlian Biru says:
    September 1st, 2009 at 8:00 am

    Ross, the story of the First Day of the Somme is indeed a stirring tale and one of which the Ulstermen are rightly proud, but the Ulstermen were hardly alone, all along the front men of every corner of the Empire were going over the top, just as loyally. I think the biggest losses of the day were incurred by the men of the rugged Canadian island of Newfoundland and let us not forget that the 16th Irish Division also served gallantly on the Somme, this division was made up of Nationalist Home Rulers and included the brother of the leader of the Irish National Party, 53 year old Captain Willie Redmond, who was to be killed in action at Messines Ridge the next year as he went over the top leading his troops alongside the men of the 36th Ulsters.

    In the Second World War the only VC won by an Ulsterman was by Able Seaman James Magennis, a Belfast Catholic, which would explain why he was utterly ignored by his home town and no recognition granted to him for almost half a century after the war. So loyalty wasn’t the preserve of the Ulstermen alone. Indeed I believe it is their cousins in Scotland who can claim to have sacrificed the most in both World Wars and when it comes to loyalty I doubt if there is ever a recorded instance when New Zealanders or Canadians ever shot at British soldiers as was regrettably the case all too often during the recent “Troubles”.

    As to the Belfast Agreement, well is it fair to blame Blair? The people of Ulster voted for it and accepted it, for heaven’s sake even the grim Doctor No, Ian Paisley, after all his ranting and howling for decades happily sat down to form the government of Northern Ireland with the former chief of staff of the IRA, Martin McGuinness, to be known forever after as the “chuckle brothers”, if betrayal there was it’s hard to pin the blame on London.

    Thanks for naming the Soviet agents in the Roosevelt and Truman administrations, there were others notably Owen Lattimore, Duncan Lee, Joseph Davies, Harold Ickes who if not actual Soviet agents weren’t a kick in the arse away from being ones and of course the special envoy to London during the War Harry Hopkins who was identified by the KGB as an agent “of major significance”. The fact that both Roosevelt and Truman were repeatedly warned about these men by the FBI but continued to employ them and indeed promote them to very high office was the reason Joe McCarthy hit such a sore note when he demanded to know why the Soviet infestation of the US Feceral government which had begun in the 1930′s had been allowed to run unchecked up until the 1950′s. It is standard operating procedure to describe the rooting out of Communists in the 1950′s as a “witch-hunt” and famously Arthur Miller wrote his play comparing what was happening to the Salem witch-hunts, the only major problem with that analysis, as everyone conspires to ignore. was that there really weren’t any witches in Salem.

  2. avatar Ross says:
    September 1st, 2009 at 8:49 am

    BB, you should also read up on the huge question mark over Lester Pearson, the Prime Minister of Canada in tyhe 50s and 60s. An excellent book called No Sense of Evil by Professor James Barros points to that individual’s deep involvement in Communist treason. He wasn’t as blatantly pro-Soviet as the late Pierre Trudeau, but given the KGB’s insertion of numerous agents via Canada, it was and possibly still is seen as the soft under-belly of the USA.

    Ulster’s loyalty is well-matched by the brave men and women of other countries in both wars, but the issue surely is that those other countries were not later coerced and finessed into having foreign and hostile participation in the running of their affairs.

    Sure, individual Catholics were unfairly regarded as disloyal when they weren’t. This is regrettable but explicable by their 1920s Cardinal’s disgraceful refusal to accept invitations from the Northern Ireland Government and Parliament to state functions, a purely sectarian mentality which deepened tensions immeasurably. This clerical identifcation with treason continued up to the 80s, when the ghastly Cardinal O’Fee made his own eagerness for Dublin rule manifest. Aussies may recall Mannix, the Sinn Fein Cardinal ‘Down Under.’

    It is, however, wrong to identify the conflict of allegiances as a religious divide, though they roughly over-lap. Faulkner and other Unionist leaders since have encouraged Catholics to join the governing of Ulster, but the traitor minority has repeatedly made clear that ‘Catholic’ participation is not what they want – rather their role is that of the worst Sudeten Germans in the 30s, who helped Hitler dismember then destroy the Czech nation.

    Did Ulster endorse the Bad Friday Agreement? I have American friends who say that our folk there (in Ulster) have had enough of conflict and want to just get on with their lives. That is not endorsement but a broken heart.
    Decades of slaughter by Dublin’s fifth column didn’t wear down the British majority there, but rather the readiness of UK politicians to seek appeasement instead of victory. Every time a good policy was tried, Americans like the late unlamented Kennedy and EU sticky-beaks would pressurise Britain to buckle, and such is the calibre of British politicians that they did. Even Thatcher, who had some grasp of the situation, was manoeuvred by her effete mandarins to sign the ‘Anglo-Irish Agreement.
    Paisley -an old man in a hurry to grab the top job. History will surely detect his opportunism

  3. avatar ET says:
    September 1st, 2009 at 1:07 pm

    Odinius said

    The United Nations and the Universal Declaration of Human Rights came from the Second World War and the Holocaust. As much as I believe in those things, I can’t exactly say they make the war and killings okay. It’s possible to think the end result is worthwhile and think the means of getting there is problematic…

    There ‘s a series on NatGeo called ‘Building from Disaster’. It seems the concept can be extended to politics either. In fact to all human enterprise. The Chinese would call it Tao.

  4. avatar sighjay says:
    September 1st, 2009 at 1:21 pm

    I’m still not convinced by the claims of the Roosevelt’s red connections. The FBI spent vast sums and had a team assigned to Eleanor for many years. Their file ran to 3,000 pages and they were simply unable to substantiate any of it. Her sympathies ran left of centre and she was obviously supportive of many who were deemed Un-American by the far right (not agreeing with the right wing still gets that tag, and is still as dishonest), but much of the smear against her came from wacko publications such as this.

    Although the FBI never launched a formal investigation into Eleanor Roosevelt’s affairs, references to her comprise one of the largest single files in J. Edgar Hoover’s collection. Her affiliation with such liberal groups as the American Youth Congress, as well as her outspokenness about segregation and violence against blacks, and her advocacy of free speech, rendered her, in the minds of Hoover’s ilk, a threat to the status quo. The 3,000-page file contains allegations against her for suspected Communist activities, threats to her life on grounds of her disloyalty to the country, close monitoring of her activities and writings, and a record of potentially insurrectionary groups that she may have influenced.

    Eleanor Roosevelt denounced the means by which Hoover’s FBI procured its information as “Gestapo-ish” and wrote letters of outrage, protesting the investigations of her friends and even her personal secretary. Despite her protests, her file would continue to grow until her death.

    From here.

    You can be sure that any substance would have speedily bought her into the sights of the House Committee on Un-American Activities, but clearly, as much as Hoover wanted to bring her down, he was unable to.

    Harry Hopkins: Most the allegations against him come stem from the assertion made by Eduard Mark that he was the Soviet agent ’19′, and this book which references Mark, as do several pieces on the eternally unreliable and partisan Newsmax and Weekly Standard pages. The NSA, under Bush, spent quite some time and money revisiting the allegations and came back with a fairly hefty no evidence to support the claim. I’m willing to buy that, rather than the claims of a few in fringe publications. And, perhaps I’m wrong, but nothing concrete has turned up in any Soviet archives to support the spying claim against Hopkins or the slurs against Eleanor.

    The case against White is stronger and can mostly be found in the work of Herbert Romerstein and Eric Breindel, notably here. These claims have also been revisited in recent years and are somewhat dismantled in this book, reviewed fairly positively on that most left wing of sites, the CIA. He argues that White was likely more guilty of inappropriate contact, rather than spying. The jury remains out on White.

    There is even less reliable evidence to convict many of the others you list. I’m taking about evidence from well researched non-partisan historians without a political axe to grind.

    McCarthy: no I think Miller was right. Given the fact that there was little real evidence of deep communist infiltration of Washington or some wild red conspiracy in Hollywood, the rampant hunt and character assassination of countless people who’s biggest crime was to hold a left of centre political stance, which they were perfectly entitled to do under the Constitution, no matter how far left as long as it wasn’t advocating the treasonable overthrow over the legitimate government, was a terrible witch hunt. Using innuendo, slurs, fear and accusations he destroyed countless innocent people. He deserves Truman’s 1959 verdict that the committee was the most un-American thing in the country today.

  5. avatar Oigal says:
    September 1st, 2009 at 1:51 pm

    Sure, individual Catholics were unfairly regarded as disloyal when they weren’t. This is regrettable but explicable by their 1920s Cardinal’s disgraceful refusal to accept invitations from the Northern Ireland Government and Parliament to state functions, a purely sectarian mentality which deepened tensions immeasurably.

    Wow..Thats real FPI reasoning there for you folks, your Cardinal refused our invitation therefore its regrettable but we have to kill you all now. Religion gotta love it!

  6. avatar Arie Brand says:
    September 1st, 2009 at 6:41 pm

    Berlian Baru recently came up with the statement that ‘every nation creates its own national myth and in that regard Indonesia is no different from Holland which also paints a collective history of itself that can often be picked apart quite easily.’

    Odinius found this evidenc e of such deep insight that he took care to quote it in a letter of his own, as if this pearl of wisdom should on no account be missed.

    BB does, of course, not have a clue about Dutch collective myths and therefore also not about the ease with which they can be taken apart. But that is a minor objection. I am mainly amazed by the glibness of the generalization involved. Did BB not think for a moment about the possibility that different types of society might have different myth making and myth sustaining faculties? Arash Abizadeh put it well: “national identities invariably depend on historical myths; the nationalist defence of such publicly shared myths is in tension with liberal democratic theory’s commitment to norms of publicity, public justification and freedom of expression … historical narratives cannot be justifiably shielded from criteria of truth and significance and … historical myths are incompatible with liberal democratic political philosophy”. Liberal democracies are also generally societies with a higher degree of literacy, a more educated public, more developed critical historical scholarship and greater freedom of expression than societies of a different character. Their myths are not easily sustained.

    I don’t need to rub in the point as far as the difference between Holland and Indonesia is concerned. Let me just put it simply: the Dutch equivalent of an epos like “Merah Putih” would not have a snowball’s chance in hell to appear on Dutch television or being shown in Dutch theaters.

    Let me have a look at the rest of his statement. The myths, he says, ’can often be picked apart quite easily.’ Well, a minimum requirement for that is some critical sense and the will to take some trouble. It could be that Odinius and BB have given evidence of that in earlier posts. Thus far, however, I have only been able to observe that they are suckers for Indonesian nationalist myths, especially if these have to do with the country’s colonial past. Odinius keeps repeating his ‘bottom of the barrel’ qualification of Dutch colonialism even though it is quite clear that he knows next to nothing about it and has just taken over an article of faith from the Indonesian nationalist repertoire. BB gets ‘distinctly unpleasant’ feelings when you dare to criticize Indonesian myths about this part of the country’s past, especially when your comments have what appears to be a Dutch label. He even wished the possible fate of a British critic in an Irish bar on me and acted in this regard as if I were an official representative of the Kingdom of the Netherlands, instead of my own poor self.

    Recently I found other evidence of the readiness with which they fall in with Indonesian nationalist myths in their comments on the Ambonese and the RMS. But I will keep that for another letter and another day.

    PJBali wrote: “Have you considered starting your own site or blog so readers would not have to go traipsing all over the internet to get your point of view? Some of us are very lazy.” Thanks for the suggestion. Maintaining one’s own blog requires however a lot of work and who says that I am any less lazy than you.?

  7. avatar Ross says:
    September 1st, 2009 at 8:18 pm

    C’mon, Oigal, I didn’t advise killing anyone for their religion. I was responding to Berlian’s comment on the Catholic VC winner.
    Lots of Catholics, including many from Eire, disgusted by ‘Dev’s ‘ shilly-shallying with Hitler, joined up and fought bravely. All credit to them.
    One of Ulster’s foremost defenders at Westminster was the late John Biggs-Davison, who wrote a handy book called The Cross of St. Patrick. He too was a devout Catholic and is much missed by loyal Ulsterfolk of both religions.

    As for the Communists in America, lots pled the 5th Amendment when called to testify. They were enemy agents. They couldn’t have joined the CPUSA otherwise.
    If they had nothing to hide, why refuse to speak up….others waited till times were more conducive, or ‘came out’ after they were dead, eg Paul Robeson, who when in Hawaii was a big buddy of Obama’s boyhood mentor, Communist Frank Davies.

    McCarthy is now being re-examined by history, much more kindly, because he was largely right.

  8. avatar Oigal says:
    September 1st, 2009 at 8:54 pm

    Sorry Ross, I won’t even pretend to know enough about the “troubles” to make comment on them in any fashion. However, I have a real sore point (rubbed raw after so much time here), the moment religion is used in any way to identify a group collective identity or ethos. The “some of my best friends are black…but…” strawman doesn’t do much for justification in my opinion.

    Having said that, I don’t want to derail your conversation with others more abreast of the facts in this case.

  9. avatar Ross says:
    September 1st, 2009 at 9:29 pm

    Actually, Oigal, you make a useful point, which can’t be addressed often enough, viz. that it is not a religious divide, but an ethnic one.

    As said above, they do overlap but Prods like me who won’t join the Orange Orders because it won’t allow its members to attend Catholic friends’ weddings etc., are quite numerous – we don’t give a damn if a bloke, or gal, is a Hindu a Catholic, or a Jew. If they’re loyal to Queen and Country, good for them!

    The problem with, for example, the police in Ulster nowadays is not that they are recruiting Catholics (who used to join the RUC but were terrorised by Sinn Fein/IRA as a result) but that they are recruiting republicans.
    i.e. some individuals who don’t recognise the legitimacy of the country they live in seek to enforce its laws–again, to what purpose but to undermine the existence of the state.

    Republicans are currently engaged in a campaign to block a memorial to Lord Mountbatten and the two kids murdered by McGuiness’s pals. They have no commitment to law or order except that which held sway in the former no-go areas, knee-capping and other forms of terrorist intimidation.

  10. avatar Odinius says:
    September 1st, 2009 at 11:51 pm

    Ross:

    Odinius, the partizans were every bit into fighting the Cetniks, as they were into collaborating with the Germans.

    This is simply not true. The Cetniks participated in the largest Nazi operation in Yugoslavia after the takeover; the Partizans did nothing of the sort. The Partizans collaborated with the Italians to take their weaponry, however, which they then used on the Nazis, their local cronies and the Cetniks.

    The Cetniks were, at first, a timid and ineffectual fighting force, which then turned into just another instrument of Nazi control. The British and American intelligence agents sussed this out, and also sussed out that the Partizans wouldn’t likely tow the Soviet line, which turned out to be a correct assessment.

  11. avatar Berlian Biru says:
    September 2nd, 2009 at 8:49 am

    Sighjay you make the allegation that people who are slightly to the left in American politics are automatically branded “communist” but then go on to do precisely the same thing by labelling anyone who points out a now indisputable historical fact about the deep penetration of the US government by Soviet agents from the 1930′s onwards as “far right”. I have studied a few books on this matter, no not kooky internet conspiracy sites, well researched historical studies, and I can assure you I don’t have some sort of fetish for jack boots and goose stepping.

    So let’s deal with your points, first of all the most egregious

    There is even less reliable evidence to convict many of the others you list.

    Really? What about Alger Hiss? The assistant to the secretary of state, or are you one of the flat earthers who still believe he was innocent? In which case that makes you as kooky as those “far right” conspiracy theorists, or Lauchlin Currie the second highest official in the treasury, or Harry Dexter White, assistant secretary to the Treasury? All these men as well as at least ten or fifteen senior members of the OSS, the forerunner of the CIA, were active Soviet spies. These are the ones we know about and now have evidence against, it boggles the mind to imagine how many middle and junior ranking officials were also recruited by them. It is a basic tenet among certain people on the liberal left of American politics to pretend that there was no Communist conspiracy in the US, why the US uniquely among western nations shouldn’t have had an infiltration of Communist spies when every other nation was having exactly the same thing is never fully explained.

    I suggest you read about the Venona decrypts, these were the Soviet codes which had been secretly broken by the US Military from the 1940′s onwards but not made public until 1995 and which have now conclusively proven that the US Government had been seriously undermined by Communist agents, they finally proved that Whittaker Chambers was right and Hiss and all the others were out and out Soviet agents.

    Furthermore your assertion that

    Given the fact that there was little real evidence of deep communist infiltration of Washington or some wild red conspiracy in Hollywood

    is I’m afraid absolute nonsense. Again I hope you don’t cling to the insane delusion that the Rosenbergs were innocent, if so you once again need to read about Venona, if under any doubt can I give you this quote from no less a personage than Nikita Khruschev’s memoirs:

    [the Rosenbergs were] very significant help in accelerating the production of our atomic bomb…Let this be a worthy tribute to the memory of those people. Let my words serve as an expression of gratitude to those who sacrificed their lives to a great cause of the Soviet state at a time when the US was using its advantage over our state to blackmail our state and undermine its proletarian cause

    High praise indeed for people who supposedly weren’t Soviet agents. The list could go on, it’s pointless to deny it now, there was widespread and significant infiltration of the US government by Communists just as there was in Britain, France, Italy, Canada and Australia and countless other governments, it’s just that for some odd reason only in the US is the fact denied.

    Oh and Hopkins, nothing concrete? It was in his book “The Inside Story” that former KGB man and defector Oleg Gordievsky stated Hopkins was a Soviet agent “of major significance”, I’ll take his word for it as I assume he might know a wee bit more about the subject than you or I. The case is closed, the Reds weren’t just under the bed, they were in the bed, in the spare room, sitting on the couch and in the kitchen fixing dinner

  12. avatar Odinius says:
    September 2nd, 2009 at 9:00 am

    There were certainly Soviet agents active in the US, and even some very high level agents at that.

    The problem with McCarthyism is not that the underlying suspicion of Soviet activity was unfounded, but that this morphed into a witch hunt in which a large number of individuals were politically persecuted not for spying, but for their political beliefs, and that this was conducted without due process or the presumption of innocence.

    That might fly in the USSR, but it was a direct violation of the US Constitution and the core values it was based upon.

  13. avatar Ross says:
    September 2nd, 2009 at 9:08 am

    Alas, history refutes the idea that Tito was not prepared to act hand-in-glove with the Nazis. Read on, and check it out via ;search; if you want more!
    ———————

    Tito, Mihailovic and the Allies, 1941-1945. Publisher: Rutgers University Press, New Brunswick, NJ, 1973. By Walter R. Roberts, 406 pages, with photographs and maps.

    Walter R. Roberts described the meeting between the Partisans and German occupation officials as follows:

    “Within the framework of negotiating … prisoner exchanges, a meeting was arranged … between the commanding general of the German 717th Infantry Division, Lieutenant General Benignus Dippold, and three high-ranking representatives of the Yugoslav Army of National Liberation: Milos Markovic, Vladimir Petrovic and Koca Popovic. Only Popovic, an army commander, used his real name. Markovic was in reality Milovan Djilas, a member of the Politburo of the Central Committee of the CPY, and Petrovic was an alias for Vladimir Velebit, in whose house in Zagreb the radio transmitter was hidden through which the CPY and the Comintern had exchanged messages in 1941.

    Walter R. Roberts was the Counselor of the American Embassy in Yugoslavia from 1960-1966 and Associate Director of USIA.

    A German memorandum states that the German-Partisan conversation took place in Gornji Vakuf (west of Sarajevo) on March 11, 1943, from 9:30 to 11 A.M. . . . During the March discussions, the Partisan delegation stressed that the Partisans saw no reason for fighting the German Army – they added that they fought against German troops only in self-defense – but wished solely to fight the Chetniks; that they were oriented toward the propaganda of the Soviet Union only because they rejected any connection with the British; that they would fight the British should the latter land in Yugoslavia; that they did not intend to capitulate, but inasmuch as they wanted to concentrate on fighting the Chetniks, they wished to suggest respective territories of interest.

  14. avatar Ross says:
    September 2nd, 2009 at 9:10 am

    Klugman, another CP traitor within British Intelligence, played a major role in getting Churchill to switch sides. It all ties in with the infiltration of Soviet agents described accurately by Berlian above.

  15. avatar sighjay says:
    September 2nd, 2009 at 11:52 am

    BB, I’ve never disputed either Hiss or The Rosenbergs, you’ll note my use of the word ‘many’, and my omission of the word ‘all’. Please don’t twist my words. And perhaps you don’t regard Newsmax, or the the publishers of that Eleanor Roosevelt pamphlet and the like as fairly partisan hard right wing sources, but I suspect even the owners of said sites and publications would happily accept such an appellation or tag. Roosevelt was then, and remains an American hero to the political mainstream in the US, regularly named as one of the greatest American women in national polls. But to the hard right, the John Birch’s etc she was seen as being as satanic as Obama is now to many of that same grouping.

    Yep, I’ve read Oleg Gordievsky, but the fact remains its all uncorroborated and since Gordievsky (with Christopher Andrew) later did a full 180 and said that: “Hopkins had been an unconscious rather than a conscious agent.” (since you are wanting to believe him, which version are you buying?), and the NSA (that’s the US National Security Agency BTW) cleared him, I’m willing to accept that there is substantially more than reasonable doubt that Hopkins was a Soviet Agent.

    There is good slapdown of Gordievsky here.

    Any chance you could pop up some evidence of the communist conspiracy in Hollywood, because McCarthy surely ruined enough careers in that town, with, as I said, innuendo, and half truth, based on pretty much nothing. A witch hunt in other words….

    What exactly was the case against Charlie Chaplin for example?

    If you think that most of these people were a threat to the USA, I can show you a Kenyan Village south of Kemang where Obama was born.

  16. avatar Berlian Biru says:
    September 2nd, 2009 at 1:02 pm

    McCarthy destroyed no careers in Hollywood.

    A handful of Communist or Communist sympathising screen writers found it difficult to get work for a few years but this was purely a commercial decision by the studio bosses who decided that employing agents of a hostile foreign power might not be appreciated by their customers, the movie watching public of America, so they declined to avail of their services, a perfectly reasonable business analysis. No one was hauled off to the Lubianka to be shot in the basement and no one was enlaved in the gulags of Siberia unlike the victims of Stalin whom those pampered Hollywood twats were so keen to help. By the way, how many right wing and conservative screenwriters or actors are employed in Hollywood today? You could probably count them on the fingers of one hand, blacklist anyone?

    Keep deluding yourself however if you want to believe that the Communist threat to the US was all a phantasmagora, a wild flight of fantasy by Joe McCarty, despite the absolute and complete rewriting of history regarding Communism that goes on today in much of the western media and education system, the fact remains that the Communist threat was real, it was extremely dangerous and just like in the rest of the western world it was well entrenched within the US government.

  17. avatar Sunda Wijaya says:
    September 2nd, 2009 at 6:26 pm

    Ross said:Alas, history refutes the idea that Tito was not prepared to act hand-in-glove with the Nazis. Read on, and check it out via ;search; if you want more!
    ———————

    Tito, Mihailovic and the Allies, 1941-1945. Publisher: Rutgers University Press, New Brunswick, NJ, 1973. By Walter R. Roberts, 406 pages, with photographs and maps.

    Walter R. Roberts described the meeting between the Partisans and German occupation officials as follows:

    “Within the framework of negotiating … prisoner exchanges, a meeting was arranged … between the commanding general of the German 717th Infantry Division, Lieutenant General Benignus Dippold, and three high-ranking representatives of the Yugoslav Army of National Liberation: Milos Markovic, Vladimir Petrovic and Koca Popovic. Only Popovic, an army commander, used his real name. Markovic was in reality Milovan Djilas, a member of the Politburo of the Central Committee of the CPY, and Petrovic was an alias for Vladimir Velebit, in whose house in Zagreb the radio transmitter was hidden through which the CPY and the Comintern had exchanged messages in 1941.

    Walter R. Roberts was the Counselor of the American Embassy in Yugoslavia from 1960-1966 and Associate Director of USIA.

    This quote is taken out of context. Carefull reading and knowledge of the sitaution on the “Yugoslav front” in WW2 would actually show those were just negotiation between the two warring parties. Happens all the time particularly during armistice. The names of partisan leaders mentioned were in charge of majority of wartime negotiations, so this one is no exception.

    Ross said:
    A German memorandum states that the German-Partisan conversation took place in Gornji Vakuf (west of Sarajevo) on March 11, 1943, from 9:30 to 11 A.M. . . . During the March discussions, the Partisan delegation stressed that the Partisans saw no reason for fighting the German Army – they added that they fought against German troops only in self-defense – but wished solely to fight the Chetniks; that they were oriented toward the propaganda of the Soviet Union only because they rejected any connection with the British; that they would fight the British should the latter land in Yugoslavia; that they did not intend to capitulate, but inasmuch as they wanted to concentrate on fighting the Chetniks, they wished to suggest respective territories of interest.

    Again out of context. At that specific point of time a joint operation of German and Italian armies, Ustashe army of so-called Independant State of Croatia and chetniks was taking place. It is the 4th anti-partisan offensive (according to former Yugoslav historians) or Fall Weiss (according to German military historians) The operation took place in western Bosnia and northern Herzegovina (Gornji Vajuf is situated there). Again just negotiations where the Tito’s partisans were buying time to save the wounded and to avoid encirclement around Neretva river during the long battle of Nertva (also known as battle for the wounded freedom fighters). All that happened from January to April 1943.

  18. avatar Sunda Wijaya says:
    September 2nd, 2009 at 6:31 pm

    Odinius said:
    Ross:

    Odinius, the partizans were every bit into fighting the Cetniks, as they were into collaborating with the Germans.

    This is simply not true. The Cetniks participated in the largest Nazi operation in Yugoslavia after the takeover; the Partizans did nothing of the sort. The Partizans collaborated with the Italians to take their weaponry, however, which they then used on the Nazis, their local cronies and the Cetniks.

    The Cetniks were, at first, a timid and ineffectual fighting force, which then turned into just another instrument of Nazi control. The British and American intelligence agents sussed this out, and also sussed out that the Partizans wouldn’t likely tow the Soviet line, which turned out to be a correct assessment.

    Odinius, for Indonesian you know quite a bit about WW2 in former Yugoslavia. If I remember well you lived for some time in Croatia, weren’t you?

  19. avatar Oigal says:
    September 2nd, 2009 at 6:44 pm

    A handful of Communist or Communist sympathising screen writers found it difficult to get work for a few years but this was purely a commercial decision by the studio bosses who decided that employing agents of a hostile foreign power might not be appreciated by their customers, the movie watching public of America, so they declined to avail of their services, a perfectly reasonable business analysis.

    Any chance of the concept of due process? An opportunity to face down hearsay evidence or does that only apply to US citizens?..oh oops they were..mmm..leaves an interesting issue when does the concept of a fair hearing for some as corny as a jury of your peers kick in and for which segment of the population.

    purely a commercial decision

    Seriously?? Really serious threats like.. Burl Ives, who was listed a threat at once stage (more to do with being homosexual than red, I suspects) although he himself turned dog on his mates and rolled over.

    Perhaps you mean Eddie Albert (Academy Award Winner..so much for business decision) and winner of the Bronze Star in WW11 and some drunkard like McCarthy and his ilk had the nerve to call them out.

    Shall we go on…or just resort to water boarding everyone at least once for their country

  20. avatar Arie Brand says:
    September 2nd, 2009 at 7:48 pm

    BB wrote:

    “The Ambonese chose their sides in the Indonesian War of Independence, if their side (the Dutch colonialists) had won they would have continued to enjoy their privileged position within Dutch Imperial rule, as it was their side lost and they were left to face the consequences”

    What consequences? You mean the onslaught on the federal structure by Jakarta and the demise of the RSM?

    BB has a certain fondness for the ‘stern dictates of history’. He kept reminding me of them. Unfortunately his perception of what these dictates actually were seems to be a bit awry sometimes. That is certainly the case here.

    His implicit suggestion that the attack on the Moluccas was a belated part of the struggle against the Dutch and that the destruction of the RMS was a consequence of Indonesia’s victory in that struggle is Indonesian propaganda.

    Ricklefs had a sounder assessment of what was going on here and what motivated the Ambonese. “They looked upon the Republic” he says “as a state dominated by Javanese, Muslims and people whom they regarded as leftists” (1993: p.233). To resist the violation of the constitution that was involved in the destruction of the federal structure had very little to do with their erstwhile loyalty to the ‘ancien regime’.

    One doesn’t have to google far and wide to find traces of the dominant narrative that BB is supporting here. It all had to do with those dutchies. I will give two examples. One is from the Jakarta Post of 26th April 2002 in which we are told: ”People loyal to Dutch colonial rule declared the existence of RMS in 1950 and staged a revolt against newly independent Indonesia. The rebellion was quashed …”. And here is Mr.Gardjono Sudjatmiko, an academic at the University of Indonesia,, who recently declared at a conference in far away Rio de Janeiro: “The South Moluccan Republic (RMS movement) aided by the Dutch was crushed by the Indonesian government with military force.” Who was going to contradict him there?

    The facts are, of course, that, to the great chagrin of the RMS leaders, the Dutch government neither wanted to recognize the RMS nor to provide any support – a stance that it has maintained ever since and that has led to considerable trouble with the Moluccan community in Holland.

    So what was at stake was not a bid to ‘continue their privileged position within Dutch imperial rule’. That imperial rule had come to a definite end four months earlier. BB might have failed to notice this but the Ambonese involved in that futile attempt to obtain independence certainly hadn’t.

    And what about this ‘privileged position’? This is also part of the dominant narrative. The Christian Ambonese, so this tale goes, were the mainstay of the colonial army. The Dutch relied on them to maintain their imperial rule and therefore gave them privileges not enjoyed by other Indonesians. It is a myth. Firstly, the Ambonese were not the mainstay of the KNIL. In terms of numbers they weren’t even a dominant part of it and they came to join this army very late. They were always greatly outnumbered there by Muslim Javanese. Ricklefs gives for the year 1905 the following numbers: 63% Javanese, 21 % Ambonese (1993: p.147). For the year 1941 we have these numbers:40% Javanese, 12 % Ambonese (see http://www.blimbing.nl/mythe.htm).

    They were also originally also not very willing warriors. The anthropologist/Indonesianist Dirk Vlasblom quotes a statement from 1884 by the Dutch bupati Riedel: “No decent native of Ambon will voluntarily join the army. Those who do are generally the scum of the village.” And apparently that scum was not very numerous because in 1865 there were among 27,000 KNIL soldiers only 984 Ambonese or less than 4 %. (http://www.nrc.nl/W2/Lab/Profiel/Molukken/vergankelijkheid.html)

    Yet they were Christians and the colonial government was eager to recruit them, especially during the Aceh War that started in 1870. So for a while they had special privileges such as somewhat higher payment than enjoyed by other ethnic groups and special schools for Christian Ambonese children. But these differences in pay were stopped in 1921 in spite of fervent protests by the Ambonese representative in the People’s Council (“Volksraad”) , Dolf Pattipeilohy.

    Few of those involved in the RMS movement had probably ever profited from this higher pay. Did they enjoy undue preference as far as promotions etc. were concerned? I don’t know and neither, of course, does BB. What I do know is that the highest ranking Indonesian officer in the KNIL was not Ambonese but Javanese: Colonel R. Abdulkadir Wijoyoatmojo.

    At any case, even if it all had to do with lost privileges, and these privileges had matched BB’s imagination, declaring the independence of the RMS was the very worst way to get them back. What could that mini state offer them in the form of employment?

    So when you want to read the ‘stern dictates of history’, BB, get yourself a decent text.

    I will deal in a separate letter with Odinius’ services to the dominant narrative.

  21. avatar Odinius says:
    September 2nd, 2009 at 10:11 pm

    Ross,

    See Sunda Wijaya’s response…exactly what I was going to say!

    Btw Roberts is a decent book, but as a history buff, you should check out Tomasevich for the definitive history of the war in Yugoslavia.

    Sunda Wijaya,

    Thanks, man! Though I’m not Indonesian, just spend a lot of time there. Prije to sam zivio u Zagrebu. Mozda cu se vratiti poslje godine!

  22. avatar Odinius says:
    September 2nd, 2009 at 10:25 pm

    Berlian Baru,

    McCarthyism was a gross violation of essential American values, full stop. It led to hundreds of arrests, thousands of lost jobs, numerous ruined careers and very un-American, negative scrutiny of individuals’ political affiliations.

    What’s worst about it is that the majority of those who lost their jobs or were put in prison had, at best, only tenuous connections to the CPA, and many had none. Many had only committed the “crime” of being homosexual. Given Roy Cohn and J. Edgar Hoover’s sexual proclivities, this is downright ridiculous.

  23. avatar Berlian Biru says:
    September 3rd, 2009 at 6:58 am

    Odinius seems to be incapable of differentiating between private business dealings and government action, those screenwriters were not persecuted by the government, they simply found that their services were no longer required by studio executives, in a free society that is perfectly reasonable. If a commercial enterprise doesn’t wish to engage in business with people they deem to be harmful to their image it is their right not to do so or do you believe that the government should intervene and force the studios to employ people they didn’t want?

    Like I said the height of the “persecution” led to a couple of Communist wannabe celebrities having to keep their heads down for a year or two, many of them went off to live in the hell-hole of Paris for the duration, compared to the horrors inflicted on the millions of victims Stalin up whose arse these people were so keen to shove their tongues I don’t reckon they had it so bad.

    If they were Nazi sympathisers would you be so worried about them?

  24. avatar Berlian Biru says:
    September 3rd, 2009 at 7:01 am

    Can you give examples of anyone who was imprisoned for having tenuous connections with the Communist Party Odinius?

  25. avatar David says:
    September 3rd, 2009 at 7:42 am

    Going back a bit as to whether so and so was actually a KGB agent, actively or passively, consciously or unconsciously, in his sleep or awake, it might not be the right way of thinking about it, may be better to just determine whether or not he was a progressive and then whether it was likely he abided by this

    no enemies to the left, no friends to the right

    In that case, in that view, the Soviet Union may have been viewed as not quite ideal or perfect but at least it was going in the generally correct direction, ie progressivism, and certainly preferable to any right wing dictatorship, preferable to the imperial dinosaurs of Europe, and maybe more. That might be rather more interesting than just trying to work out whether they were in the direct pay of the USSR.

  26. avatar David says:
    September 3rd, 2009 at 8:08 am

    And then as an interesting thought experiment turn that around,

    no enemies to the right, no friends to the left

    And think of how many people in USG circles who was like that.

  27. avatar Ross says:
    September 3rd, 2009 at 11:34 am

    MCarthy has often been blamed for making attacks without providing names. thus putting innocents in jeopardy. Shortly after his famous Wheeling speech, he said.
    “The Senator from Illinois demanded, loudly, that I furnish all the names. I told him at that time that so far as I was concerned, I thought that would be improper; that I did not have all the information about these individuals. . . .I have enough to convince me that either they are members of the Communist Party or they have given great aid to the Communists: I may be wrong. That is why I said that unless the Senate demanded that I do so, I would not submit this publicly, but I would submit it to any committee – and would let the committee go over these in executive session. It is possible that some of these persons will get a clean bill of health. .”

    Patung, anybody on the democratic left who preferred Soviet Communism to ‘imperial Europe’ must have been either a knave or a fool. i’ve got a book by Malcolm Muggeridge here dating from the Stalin years, when he visited Moscow and beyond and was sufficiently intellectually honest to see the truth.

    The point is, these foreign commies were acting as agents of a foreign power, inimical to their own countries. That is treason, and very few of them got the supreme penalty traditionally meted out to people guilty of that crime. Losing a job in the film industry hardly compares.

  28. avatar Arie Brand says:
    September 3rd, 2009 at 6:55 pm

    BB ended on the note “Today the Ambonese are accorded equal citizenship of the Indonesian Republic …” That bit could come straight out of an Indonesian tourist brochure. Perhaps BB should have a look at this to refresh his memory::

    http://district7642.livejournal.com/225824.html

    The fellows brandishing those parang2 while singing psalm 42 (so an in these things better instructed brother tells me) might have a different opinion about this. Today it is not those KNIL fellows, long since gone to the grave, who feel threatened. It is the Christian community that has for some time experienced the discrimination it feared back in 1950.

    Odinius however came up with this:

    “The RMS was hardly the “choice of the Ambonese.” It was the choice of a portion of the disgruntled ex-KNIL officer corps, making the RMS more palace coup than popular uprising. They had very limited support from the local population, who are probably best described as ambivalent on the whole deal, and even from the influential civil servants, who would benefit from the expansion of bureaucratic privilege in Indonesia”.

    There are a few facts here that inspire doubt – and even Odinius’ habitual air of authority cannot dispel it:

    1. Those who took the initiative to proclaim the RMS on 25th April 1950 were all civilians (Manuhutu, Warisal, Soumokil, Manusama). These men subsequently occupied the few positions in the first cabinet. No military man to be seen there.

    2. The day before the proclamation there was an open air mass gathering, referred to as a ‘kongres kilat’, a ‘rapat raksasa’, which is unlikely to have just been a gathering of military men (the Dutch argument to withhold support was originally that this mass gathering could not rank as a plebiscite. Later the argument became more legalistic. It was said then that the RTC-accords only referred to states and that the Moluccas ranked as a ‘daerah’ and not a state – it was of course part of Indonesia Timur, the state that was incorporated in the Republic on 21st April 1950, three days before the ‘kongres kilat’).

    3. Most Moluccan KNIL soldiers were not there at all. They were holed up in Makassar demanding to be demobilized in the Moluccas. Neither the Indonesian nor the Dutch government was willing to consent to this. Ultimately the majority of them went to Holland.

    4. According to a review of Manusama’s memoirs in the Dutch quality paper TROUW, of the five hundred Moluccans killed in action in the subsequent confrontation with the TNI four hundred were young civilians. These were mostly enthusiastic young boys who had to be trained on the battlefield in the most elementary things by the ‘old hands’. There must have been considerable support from Mums and Dads behind this.

    5.Soumokil and his fellows kept up the struggle for another thirteen years in Ceram. It is axiomatic that a guerilla movement cannot last unless it has considerable civilian support.

    Having said all this it should of course be recognized that the support of the military present in Ambon was decisive for the ‘federalists’ getting the upper hand over the ‘unitarians’ in the political tug of war preceding the events of the 24th and 25th April. And the concerns of those military men must have been an important factor in the decisions made then.

    But one could leave it to Indonesian nationalists to trivialize the whole thing as a military ‘palace coup’. A ‘foreign observer’ coming up with this kind of stuff arouses the suspicion to be remarkably vulnerable to the ‘dominant narrative’.

  29. avatar Odinius says:
    September 3rd, 2009 at 11:54 pm

    BB said:

    Can you give examples of anyone who was imprisoned for having tenuous connections with the Communist Party Odinius?

    How about the defense lawyers for the CPA members convicted under the Smith Act?

    On the subject of wrongful imprisonment, how about the conviction of Elizabeth Flynn and 23 others on what the FBI later admitted was forged testimony?

    AS for your argument that the firings were “understandable,” in what universe is being subpoenaed by congress to testify sufficient grounds for dismissal from an unrelated job? That violated America’s labor laws, but the DOJ refused to prosecute employers on that grounds.

    If you want more detail, I suggest you read Ellen Schrecker’s book, which also includes a number of primary documents and lists of all those imprisoned.

  30. avatar Berlian Biru says:
    September 6th, 2009 at 10:09 am

    The lawyers were not convicted under the Smith Act.

    The Smith Act was initially supported by the Communist Party.

    The defendants did not have “tenuous” links with the Communist Party but were in fact senior Party members and their convictions were upheld by a vote of six to two later by the Supreme Court.

    Likewise Elizabeth Flynn was an extremely prominent Communist and supporter of the Soviet Union, she was not some little minnow swept up in a wild witch hunt. The convictions were later found to have been in violation of the Constitution but your assertion that they were convicted for having tenuous links with the CPA is untrue.

    I’m afraid when it comes to people who actively supported the horrors that Stalin was inflicting on hundreds of millions of people and who wanted to create the same thing in the United States, the well of my sympathy runs extremely dry. Nazis, Communists, two sides of the same coin to me, boo-hoo if they get a little bit of their own medicine from time to time.

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