Under the Influence

For the few of us who reported East Timor long before it was finally declared news, the “disclosures” last weekend that Washington had trained Indonesia’s death squads are bizarre.

That the American, British and Australian governments have underwritten proportionally the greatest savagery since the Holocaust has been a matter of unambiguous record for a quarter of a century. All it needed was reporting.

In December 1975, after US secretary of state Henry Kissinger returned from Jakarta, having given Suharto the green light to invade East Timor, he called his staff together and discussed how a congressional ban on arms to Indonesia could be circumvented. “Can’t we construe a communist government [in East Timor] as self-defence?” he asked. Told this would not work, Kissinger gave orders that he wanted arms shipments secretly “started again in January”.

A few weeks later, on January 23 1976, the US ambassador to the United Nations, Daniel Patrick Moynihan, sent a top-secret cable to Kissinger in which he boasted about the “considerable progress” he had made in blocking UN action on East Timor. Moynihan later wrote: “The department of state desired that the United Nations prove utterly ineffective

— source johnpilger.com | john pilger | 21 Sep 1999

Nullius in verba


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