Galloway: New papers reveal UK’s role in the slaughter of 3mn Indonesians. How do I explain this to my half-Indonesian children? | WHAT REALLY HAPPENED X-Frame-Options: SAMEORIGIN

Galloway: New papers reveal UK’s role in the slaughter of 3mn Indonesians. How do I explain this to my half-Indonesian children?

Newly-released documents paint a picture of Britain as a fading imperial power in the 1960s, but one still capable of wreaking deadly vengeance on those who were perceived as threatening its ‘interests.’

My wife is Indonesian, though born in Amsterdam because her parents, like many others, are exiles from the genocidal massacre of up to three million people in that country in the mid-1960s.

As the Australian novelist Christopher Koch put it, Indonesia in 1965 was A Year of Living Dangerously, a book that was later turned into a film starring Mel Gibson.

Millions did not live through it, of course; that year and the year which came after it were times almost impossible to imagine, even for those who have seen the Oscar-winning documentary “Act of Killing” by director Joshua Oppenheimer.

In the film, in surreal and yet all-too-real roleplay, the actual slaughterers re-enact the last moments of those they murdered and (mainly) appear unmoved by the memories. Some have gone on through the culture of impunity to great positions in the state and commerce (usually the same thing), others wander the labyrinthine malls of the modern Indonesia which has been built on the mass graves of those they killed. A staggering number of them.

It was once so different.

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