Jakarta’s Godfathers

It is grotesque hypocrisy for Tony Blair to weep for the children of Dunblane.

Having finally discovered East Timor, most of the media have now left, blaming a “descent into violence”. The long, silent years mock these words. The descent began almost a quarter of a century ago when Indonesian special forces invaded the defenceless Portuguese colony. On December 7, 1975, a lone radio voice rose and fell in the static: “The soldiers are killing indiscriminately. Women and children are being shot in the streets. This is an appeal for international help. This is an SOS – please help us.”

No help came, because the western democracies were secret partners in a crime as great and enduring as any this century; proportionally, not even Pol Pot matched Suharto’s spree. Air Force One, carrying President Ford and his secretary of state Henry Kissinger, climbed out of Indonesian airspace the day the bloodbath began. “They came and gave Suharto the green light,” Philip Liechty, the CIA desk officer in Jakarta at the time, told me. “The invasion was delayed two days so they could get the hell out. We were ordered to give the

— source johnpilger.com | john pilger | 7 Sep 1999

Nullius in verba


A Moral Outrage

It was the public, not politicians, who forced the Australian government to end the betrayal of East Timor.

On October 11, the Guardian published a letter by the Australian high commissioner in London, Philip Flood, objecting to my column about Australia’s complicity in the suffering of the East Timorese. His words shone with moral indignation. His government had been “driven by humanitarian concern for the desperate plight of the East Timorese” and had “acted forthrightly after Indonesia failed to maintain order”. For suggesting otherwise, I was guilty of “denigrating” my homeland.

Could this be the same Philip Flood who was the Australian ambassador to Indonesia at the time of the massacre of hundreds of East Timorese in the Santa Cruz cemetery in 1991? This was the atrocity that was secretly videotaped by a British cameraman, Max Stahl, breaking the long, international silence over East Timor. In my 1994 film, Death Of A Nation, Stahl and I revealed that a second massacre of the wounded had taken place later that day in the Dili morgue and military hospital.

The most vigorous denials of these subsequent murders came from Canberra, where the government of Paul Keating was in the midst of preparing a highly secret “security pact” with

— source johnpilger.com | john pilger | 2 Nov 1999

Nullius in verba

Hidden origins of Eastern Asia’s ‘land of milk and honey’

A study has revealed for the first time the ancient origins of one of the world’s most important ecosystems by unlocking the mechanism which determined the evolution of its mountains and how they shaped the weather there as well as its flora and fauna.

It was previously thought Southern Tibet and the Himalaya were instrumental in turning the once barren land of eastern Asia into lush forests and abundant coastal regions which became home to a rich array of plant, animal and marine life, including some of the world’s rarest species. But new findings, published today in the journal Science Advances, conversely show Northern Tibet played the more influential role in this transformation which began more than 50 million years ago.

Until now it was unknown why the climate changed from that of a dry, arid, almost desert-like ecosystem to that of a lush, wet ecosystem where a vast array of plant, animal, and marine life can be found, including some of the world’s rarest species.

from the late Paleogene to the early Neogene age, some 23-40 million years ago, the growth of the north and northeastern portion of Tibet was the most important factor because it increased rainfall,

— source University of Exeter | Jan 27, 2021

Nullius in verba