East Timor: Annihilation


Jan Slakov

From: •••@••.•••
Date: Sat, 11 Sep 1999 11:37:50 -0300
To: •••@••.•••
Subject: (en)  TIMOR --  Annihilation / Aniquilamento total


Web page in English         <http://www.etan.org>

11 de setembro --- 26 anos do golpe no Chile e da morte de Salvador Allende
September, 11 ---  26 years of the coup in Chile and of  Salvador Allende's 

"Serás tumba de los libres  ¡ o asilo contra la opresión !"   (do Hino Chileno) 
"To be a tomb of the free people --- or asylum against the oppression"  
(from the Chilean National Anthem)

Note from Jan: Roberto Magellan introduced this message in Portuguese to the
Brazilian ATTAC list. My Portuguese is not good enough to be sure of what he
said, but I believe he says that for most of the East Timorese, peacekeeping
intervention would already be useless or even hypocritical, for they have
been deported from East Timor and now are dying of malnutrition and disease.

Certainly, the suggested action in the Noam Chomsky message I am sending out
along with this one: lobbying our politicians to withdraw military and
economic ties with Indonesia until it allows international peacekeepers into
East Timor to protect the people there, seems rather hopeless... And yet,
the East Timorese legitimate leadership (such as  Nobel Peace Prize
co-laureate José Ramos-Horta, jailed leader Xanana Gusmão, and Nobel Peace
Prize co-laureates Bishop Belo and José Ramos-Horta) have been calling for
UN peacekeepers in East Timor for months. I think writing our leaders to
echo their appeal is the the least we can do!

all the best, Jan

Date: Fri, 10 Sep 1999   From: Doug Henwood <•••@••.•••>
Subject: Fwd: ETISC: The Total Annihilation of the East Timorese

Date: Sat, 11 Sep 1999    From: "John M. Miller" <•••@••.•••>
Subject: ETISC: The Total Annihilation of the East Timorese

East Timor International Support Center
PO Box 651, Nightcliff
Darwin NT 0814 Australia
Tel: 61-8-8948 4458
Fax: 61-8-8948 4498

The Total Annihilation of East Timorese
Society, Culture and  Property Is Taking Place


Since earlier this year the Indonesian military have been working to
undermine the search for a solution to the East Timor conflict. After the
results of the UN held consultation of the East Timorese people showed that
close to 80% of the population chose independence from Indonesia, the
Indonesian military has embarked on a campaign of total annihilation of
East Timorese society, culture and property, carrying out a threat issued
before the ballot was held.

Steps in the annihilation of a people

Getting rid of the witnesses
Indonesia set the scene for their planned annihilation by efficiently
driving out the following foreigners and leaders:
1. Bishop Belo, Nobel Peace Laureate
2. International Red Cross (ICRC)
3. Australian Consular staff (the only consulate in East Timor) - all
except three.
4. Foreign media (reduction from 100+ to less than 5, now on the run to the
mountains outside the UN Compound).
5. Foreign medical personnel (doctors and nurses)
6. International observers (IFET and others)
7. UN staff (reduced from over 1000 to 80)

Forced evacuations
The announced Indonesian plan was to evacuate 250,000 people, which is
about 35% of the total East Timorese population. Australia's Minister of
Defense John Moore estimates that evacuations to West Timor have so far
reached 180,000, but the ferry loads of trucks, ships, and planes are still
proceeding. The target of 250,000 will probably be reached very soon.

There are two kinds of refugees: a) pro-Jakarta people who travel
comfortably by Indonesian ship or plane together with all their household
goods and their families intact, and b) pro-independence people - the
biggest majority and mostly women and children - who come by truck, without
any goods, and with their families scattered or killed.

The pro-independence deportees were herded into trucks at gunpoint,
bringing nothing with them. The scale, speed and large amount of resources
used in this political cleansing show a high degree of pIanning, only
possible at the highest levels. It is hard to imagine that the Indonesians
will devote similar resources to providing food, medicines and clothes, or
the compassion and organisation, to handle 250,000 people living in refugee
camps. Ominously, many are now being moved to other Indonesian islands
taking them further away from their homes. Many deaths, and much sickness
and despair, are certain to occur.

Killing Field
The total number killed is difficult to estimate. However, it is fair to
assume the figure is well over 1000. With the massacre of refugees in Suai
on September 6 accounting for between 250 and 900, it is more likely that
the total number of dead throughout East Timor is at least 5000. Religious
and political leaders seem to have been especially targeted. The brutality
of the slaughter is highlighted by the killing in Dili of Canossian Sr
Margarida, who has been described as: " … about 80 years old, walks slowly,
yet has an incredible degree of energy.  She spends most of the day playing
with young children, in the garden of Bishop Belo - a nun, totally
uninvolved in politics, devoted to helping children and to prayer".

Apart from slaughter of refugees and resisters, there have been selective
killings of pro-independence leaders and priests.

Escapees in the mountains
Since the second wave of violence unleashed on August 31, whole towns and
suburbs, whole families as well as individual men separated from their
evacuated families, have fled to the hills. It is reasonable to estimate
that there are up to over one hundred thousand people in hiding. Facing
those fleeing to the hills are the 26,000 Indonesian troops, to which
further reinforcements are currently being added. Evidence has emerged that
Timorese militias, imported Javanese militias, and evacuating Timorese men
forced to turn militias, have been co-opted into a force which is now
spreading out into the hills.

The original hard core of Falintil fighters in the Timorese mountains
numbered about 3000. These numbers were enlarged by the many people who
fled to the mountains as a result of military-orchestrated militia violence
from January to August. The total probably rose to 10,000. Large numbers
may have joined Falintil fighters seeking their protection. Also Falintil
has always been the real enemy of the Indonesian Army. Now, outside the
gaze of journalists, and with the aid of martial law, it is fair to assume
that the Indonesian Army is attempting their "final solution" - to wipe out
Falintil and the mountain escapees. Nothing now stands in the way of the
Army;  clandestine links with townsfolk have been severed, food links with
surrounding villages - the traditional lifeline - have been cut. Mass
killings are inevitable.

The destruction of all towns and their infrastructure
News reports have shown the sacking and burning of Dili, the capital.
Australia's Defence  Minister estimated that at least two-thirds of the
city has been leveled. Further reports have also told of the destruction of
every other town in East Timor. The reports cover Suai, Maliana, Liquiça,
Aileu, Same, Ainaro, Ermera, Manatuto, Baucau, Los Palos, Viqueque, and
Iliomar. Baguia, a small mountain community has been torched, and there are
stories of the destruction of crops and theft of livestock. It is unlikely
that many villages have been spared.

What has been destroyed in Dili? The university, the polytechnic, Telkom
building, most shops (none are open), many schools (none are open). What
services have been cut off in Dili? Water supplies, power supply, telephone

What is left?
Sixty-five percent (65%) of the population remain. Forty UN staff remain,
as well as four or five journalists, and three Australian consular staff. A
few foreign missionaries remain, probably in hiding. East Timor's second
Bishop, Basilio de Nascimento, was injured and in hiding.

A powerful Indonesian Army of over 26,000 roams the land, assisted by many
thousands of forced militias. They are murdering, burning, destroying, and
hunting Falintil resisters and ordinary East Timorese in the hills and
mountains. Killings continue.

The remaining population, now leaderless, is terrified. No services exist,
no schools, no health centres. Humanitarian agencies are closed. The means
of livelihood, the crops, the livestock, are lost.  Disease and sickness -
of body and mind - will bring despair and death. The annihilation is almost
complete - a modern example of medieval barbarism, where the towns are
sacked, the land ravaged, the men murdered, and the women and children
carried away into slavery.

Sept. 10, 1999


John M. Miller         Internet: •••@••.•••
Media & Outreach Coordinator, East Timor Action Network
PO Box 150753, Brooklyn, NY 11215-0753 USA
Phone: (718)596-7668      Fax: (718)222-4097
Web site: http://www.etan.org

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