Wednesday, July 15, 2020

Complicity in Mass Murder

Indonesia Germany BND genocide cold war terrorism violence military crime

BERLIN/JAKARTA/WASHINGTON(Own report) - New documents confirm the West German authorities' close cooperation with Indonesia's military during the mass murder of hundreds of thousands of Indonesian communists. In October 1965, generals seized power in Jakarta to halt President Sukarno's left-wing agenda. In the months that followed, they organized the slaughter of at least 500,000, possibly up to three million - de facto or suspected - members of the Communist Party. At that time, West German authorities maintained close contact with members of Indonesia's military and intelligence service. Even though they were well informed on the developments, they supported the military with equipment and finances. Previously classified documents of the West German Federal Intelligence Service (BND) reveal that the Indonesian generals needed the resources particularly for "special operations against Communist Party functionaries." Karl Carstens, State Secretary in the Foreign Ministry, at the time, was most likely involved in transacting the support. The West German government in Bonn had thus contributed to the Southeast Asian "conflict of systems" at the time.

In its efforts to strengthen its position in the conflict of systems in Southeast Asia, the West had supported the putsch in Indonesia. At the time, the United States was fighting communism in its war in Vietnam. In accordance with its "Domino Theory," the USA had to win the war in Vietnam, under all circumstances, to prevent communism from spreading to other countries in the region, in a domino effect. Western strategists had also focused on Indonesia. After it gained independence from the Dutch colonial power, it was seeking an independent foreign policy. President Sukarno had been instrumental in founding of the Non-Aligned Movement in 1955 in Bandung, near Jakarta. At the same time, the Indonesian Communist Party ((Partai Komunis Indonesia, PKI) was growing stronger. Washington and also Bonn perceived the PKI, with its nearly three million members, to be a serious threat to western interests. Not only US American but also West German authorities maintained good relations to Indonesia's military and intelligence service. While, in the early 1960s, Indonesian military personnel were trained in West Germany, a former colonel of the SS in the Reich's Main Security Office (Reichssicherheitshauptamt) in Nazi Germany, Rudolf Oebsger-Röder, was working with the BND in Jakarta. He was also serving as a correspondent for the Süddeutsche Zeitung and the Neue Zürcher Zeitung.  (more...)

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