West Papua Report December 2014: TNI in West Papua, Vanuatu meet, protesters attacked, U.S. supports TNI and more
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West Papua Report

This is the 128th in a series of monthly reports that focus on developments affecting Papuans. This series is produced by the non-profit West Papua Advocacy Team (WPAT) drawing on media accounts, other NGO assessments, and analysis and reporting from sources within West Papua. This report is co-published by the East Timor and Indonesia Action Network (ETAN). Back issues are posted online at http://www.etan.org/issues/wpapua/default.htm Questions regarding this report can be addressed to Edmund McWilliams at edmcw@msn.com. If you wish to receive the report directly via e-mail, send a note to etan@etan.org. Link to this issue: http://etan.org/issues/wpapua/2014/1412wpap.htm.

The Report leads with "Perspective," an analysis piece; followed by "Update," a summary of some developments during the covered period; and then "Chronicle" which includes analyses, statements, new resources, appeals and action alerts related to West Papua. Anyone interested in contributing a Perspective or responding to one should write to edmcw@msn.com. The opinions expressed in Perspectives are the author's and not necessarily those of WPAT or ETAN. For additional news on West Papua see the reg.westpapua listserv archive or on Twitter.


This edition's Perspective is the first part of an article by Made Supriatma about Indonesian security force deployments in West Papua. In Update: Papuan leaders from around the world gathered in Vanuatu. Peaceful Papuan demonstrators were detained and shot during events commemorating the founding of the West Papua National Committee (KNPB). Papuan Behind Bars reports that 69 West Papuan political prisoners are currently in Indonesian government custody. The U.S. government plans to expand its support for "modernization" of the Indonesian military (TNI). Reform of that deeply corrupt, human rights abusing and unaccountable institution is not on the U.S. or TNI "modernization" agenda. Indonesia's new defense minister plans to re-institute military influence in civilian sectors. The plan would undo much of the limited post-Suharto reforms with specific negative consequences for West Papua. Another military plan, apparently endorsed by President Widodo, would put new military commands in West Papua. In Chronicle, Papuan political prisoner Filep Karma is interviewed by Michael Bachelard. A review of the 2001 Bloody Waisor incident provides important context to new logging plans. Budi Hernawan revisits the murder by Kopassus of Theys Eluay and the disappearance of his driver. Finally, we note a timely analysis of Indonesia's growing efforts to wield influence in Melanesia where support for West Papuan self determination is growing.


Indonesian Security Forces in West Papua (Part 1)
By Made Supriatma 

Made Supriatma is an editor with Joyo Indonesia News Service.

In his meeting with TNI elites, President Joko Widodo reportedly agreed to a proposal to expand the army’s territorial command in West Papua. The army proposed two more territorial commands (Kodam) in eastern Indonesia. One is in Manado and the other is in Manokwari, the capital city of Papua Barat province. The navy will also expand its command by adding an Armada Command (Komando Armada Tengah) in Makassar. TNI also proposed to revive Komando Gabungan Pertahanan (Joint Defense Command) which is similar to Komando Wilayah Pertahanan (defense territorial command) or Kowilhan. The Kowilhan was established in 1969, and then eradicated in 1984 during the reorganization of the Indonesian military. The TNI chief, Gen. Moeldoko, said that he also plans to revive the position of territorial assistant for the navy and air force.


Indonesian soldiers on patrol in West Papua.


President Joko Widodo is the fourth civilian president of the reformation era. Three of his civilian predecessors have never served full term in the office. All of those civilian presidents had to deal with the military and in fact it became their biggest challenge. President Widodo too has to confront the same problem. The three presidents were approaching the military differently. President Habibie chose to defy the military completely when he decided to grant referendum to East Timor. President Abdurrahman Wahid chose a more confrontational approach. He often intervened in the military’s internal affairs. President Megawati Sukarnoputri took a very different approach. She gave a ‘blank check’ to the military. She appointed the ultra-nationalist officer Gen. Ryamizard Ryacudu as the army chief of staff. Under her administration, the military was given permission to launch huge operations in Aceh in order to crush the rebellion. Many of Megawati’s military men are now parts of the Jokowi’s administration.


It will be hard for President Widodo to keep his promises to the people of West Papua and at the same time accommodate security interests of the military and police.

With the hardliners dominate his administration, we can expect that Jokowi will apply a more nationalistic approach in confronting the West Papua problem. Meanwhile, President Widodo promised "to solve" West Papua's problems in his campaign. He won the region handily during the election. However, will he make good of his promises? How will he handle the security forces in West Papua? Can he change the security situation in the region and give Papuans the human rights protection that they deserve?

This article shows the networks of Indonesia's security forces in West Papua. It will be hard for President Widodo to keep his promises to the people of West Papua and at the same time accommodate security interests (and the other interests that come with it) of the military and police. As we shall see, Indonesian security forces in West Papua have grown every year. Meanwhile, security problems in the region are not declining.

General Features

Density of Indonesia Security Forces


West Papua National
All 1:99 1:296
TNI 1:168 1:558
Police 1:247 1:631

It is no doubt that the presence of security forces in West Papua has grown in the last decade. The per capita ratio between population and security personnel is one to 99. In other words, there is one security person (police or soldier) for every 99 people. This is much higher than the one to 296 ratio of security personnel to population in Indonesia. The ratio between TNI soldiers and the population in Papua is one to 168. Overall in Indonesia that ration is one soldier to 558 people. [1] The ratio of police to population is one to 247 people in West Papua. Nationally, it is one to 631. [2]

I estimate that the total number of security forces in West Papua as 36,254 personnel. These consist of 21,400 TNI personnel (18,950 army, 1,050 navy, and 1,400 air force) and up to 14,584 personnel of Indonesian police. [3] According to the 2010 population census, Papua Province’s population is 2,851,999 and Papua Barat Province’s population is 760,855.

West Papua is the most militarized region in Indonesia.

The Army

The army is still the most prominent security organization in West Papua, with the most personnel compared to other security forces. The army is organized hierarchically into territorial commands and combat units. Some territorial commands have their own combat units, but in some cases combat units stand independently.


Kodam XVII/Cendrawasih headquarters. Photo from Antara.


The highest territorial command in West Papua is Kodam XVII/Cendrawasih, whose headquarters is located in Jayapura. The Kodam controls West Papua’s two provinces. Kodam XVII was created in 1962 when the region was still under Dutch administration. In 1985, as part of reorganization of the army, this Kodam was abolished and merged with Kodam XV/Pattimura in Ambon, Maluku. The new Kodam was named Kodam VIII/Trikora. In 1999, Kodam Trikora was dissolved and both Kodam Pattimura and Trikora were brought to life once again. The name of the Kodam changed into Kodam XVII/Cendrawasih in 2007.


In the post-New Order era, Kodam XVII/Cendrawasih has expanded its territorial and combat units. It now has four Korems and 12 Kodims under its jurisdiction.

The Kodam is territorially divided into four Korems (Komando Resort Militer/Military Resort Command). Each Korem has some Kodims (Komando Distrik Militer/District Military Command). As in the majority of Indonesian regions, Kodims are structured parallel with the civilian regency administration (kabupaten). Although in West Papua’s case, as a result of the high speed of regency proliferation, some Kodims have to operate in two or more regencies. Each Kodim is also divided into several Koramils (Komando Rayon Militer/Military Subdistrict command), which are equal to Kecamatan (Subdistrict) in civilian bureaucracy. The lowest territorial rank under the Indonesian army is Babinsa (Bintara Pembina Desa/Village Guidance Noncommissioned Officer). The role of a Babinsa is important because this person can serve as human intelligence (HUMINT) at the village level and the role’s function can easily be modified into a combat role. [4]

In the post-New Order era, Kodam XVII/Cendrawasih has expanded its territorial and combat units. It now has four Korems and 12 Kodims under its jurisdiction. Also, it originally had only three combat battalions. Since 2004, TNI began to create a new infantry battalion on the southern coast of West Papua: Yonif 754/ENK, 755/Yalet, and 756/WMS. In 2007, these infantry battalions were placed under the command of an Infantry Brigade, Brigif 20/Ima Jaya Keramo. [5] The three battalions are complementary to the three previously established infantry battalions in the northern coast of West Papua: Yonif 751/VJS in Jayapura; Yonif 752/VYS in Sorong; and Yonif 753/AVT in Nabire.

Other than infantry battalions, the Kodam is also equipped with four combat engineer detachments (Zeni Tempur or Zipur), [6] one cavalry detachment (DenKav-3), [7] and one training regiment (Rindam). In the future, most likely the Kodam will be developed further. There are plans to increase several reserve task forces (Bantuan Tempur or Banpur), such as combat engineer and cavalry detachment, into battalions.

Three newly formed battalions (Yonif 754, 755, and 756), which are placed under Brigif-20, are the “over-strength” battalions. According to Davies, the "over-strength" battalions are to "cover operational tasks previously performed by two or more battalion entities, i.e., routine 'static' point and route security tasks alongside 'mobile' rapid-reactions functions." [8] TNI also increased the capacity of the three older battalions by adding more personnel and weaponry. An unconfirmed report mentions that Yonif 751/VJS has been upgraded to a Raider-type battalion.

Existing army battalions in Kodam XVII are clearly not capable of launching multiple operations for the whole region. The Kodam receives help from outside forces, either from other Kodams or combat units such as Kostrad or Kopassus. The outside forces are known as BKO (Bawah Kendali Operasi/Under Operational Control). The army issued new policies regarding length of the BKO operation. Now a BKO battalion stays only for 6 months. Previously, a BKO battalion has to stay for 10 to 12 months. [9]

Security operations mostly involve local and BKO battalions. In each operation, a company or a detachment of a local battalion is mixed with BKO battalions and forms a task force (satuan tugas or Satgas). The BKO battalion, however, never arrives in a full force. In many cases, the battalions are leaving behind company headquarters (Kompi Markas) and Reserved Company (Kompi Bantuan/Kiban). Interestingly, in many cases, Kopassus’s Tactical Unit (Satuan Taktis/Sattis) is often put as BKO to a BKO battalion. Kopassus also has one detachment of Sandi Yudha (Covert-action) that is regularly assigned in West Papua.

Navy and Air Forces

The navy has also expanded in West Papua since 1998. In 2009, the navy (TNI-AL) built a new 11th Primary Naval Base (Lantamal IX) in Merauke. Previously, the navy had another primary base in Jayapura (Lantamal X). The 11th Primary Naval Base is aimed at securing the western parts of West Papua's seas while the 10th base is securing the seas in the eastern part of the region. The 11th Primary Naval Base controls navy bases in Timika, Aru, and Tual, and one navy post in Saumlaki. The 10th base in Jayapura (Lantamal X) covers the naval bases in Sorong, Manokwari, and Biak, and several navy posts in Liki and Mapia. The navy also has one maintenance and repair facility (Fasharkan or Fasilitas Pemeliharaan dan Perbaikan) in Manokwari.

Each Lantamal has at least 750 personnel and the each navy base (Lanal) has around 150 to 250 personnel. The Manokwari Fasharkan has 219 personnel. From two Lantamal, four Lanal, and one Fasharkan, we estimate the navy has approximately 2,600 personnel in Papua. A report of the DPR recess visit to Papua Barat in 2011 mentions Lantamal XI has 761 personnel, Lanal Biak 155 personnel, and Lanal Sorong 137 personnel.


Indonesia marines. Photo from Jakarta Greaterr.


The navy plans to add another division of marines in Sorong, Papua Barat province. The new division will complement two existing Marine divisions (Pasmar-1 in Jakarta and Pasmar-2 in Surabaya) and one brigade in Lampung (3rd Marine Infantry Brigade/Brigif-3 Marinir). In the navy’s strategic plan, Indonesia will be divided into three Armada Command Areas: the West (Koarmabar), with headquarters in Jakarta; the East (Koarmatim), in Surabaya; and the Central Armada Command (Koarmateng), which will be established in Makassar, South Sulawesi.

The air force (TNI-AU) [10] manages four airports (in Jayapura, Biak, Merauke, and Timika). TNI plans to upgrade both the Biak and Jayapura airbases to Type A. The Biak airbase will have a squadron of fighter planes (most likely F5Es). Meanwhile, the Jayapura airbase is left without fighters although the airbase has facilities for landing and takeoff for fighter jets. This airbase also has several helicopters that can be used to support military operations in Papuan regions.

The air force also installed three radar stations in Biak (Radar Unit 242 in Tanjung Warari), in Timika (Radar Unit 243), and in Merauke (Radar Unit 244). It plans to have another station installed in Jayapura. In 2010, the air force established one elite Paskhas battalion (Yon 468/Sarotama) in Biak. The special forces battalion is trained as PPRC (Pasukan Pemukul Reaksi Cepat/Strike and Rapid Reaction Force). It has commando skills similar to Kopassus. This battalion provides security to its air bases all over Papua, its weapons system (Alat Utama Sistem Persenjataan or Alutsista), and radar facilities. Jayapura will have an independent company of Paskhas that has commando qualifications (Kompi D BS Parako PPRC Sentani Jayapura).

Coming in Part 2: Police, Intelligence, and Conclusion

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[1] Wikipedia provides statistics of TNI personnel in 2009. Total TNI personnel in that year was 438,410 consisting of army (328,517 personnel); Navy (74,963 personnel); Air Force (34,930 personnel). http://id.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tentara_Nasional_Indonesia (accessed October 21, 2012). Former Army Chief of Staff Gen. Djoko Santoso, however, mentioned that ideally the total number of the army is 0.4% of the total Indonesian population or around 800,000 personnel. He said that the army will steadily increased its personnel and will add around 350,000 more troops by 2024. It will make the total number of personnel around 650,000. “TNI AD Butuh Personel Lebih Banyak Amankan Wilayah NKRI,” http://www.antaranews.com/berita/1189405696/tni-ad-butuh-personel-lebih-banyak-amankan-wilayah-nkri (accessed October 5, 2012). It seems that the plan is easier said than done.

[2] In 2011, the Indonesian police comprised 387,470 personnel. The total number of personnel within the police would be slightly higher if civil servants are included. There are 26,039 civil servants (whose main job is doing administrative work) within the police. This make total number of personnel within the police is 413,509. “Jumlah personel Polri akan ditambah besar-besaran,” Kontan, July 25, 2012.

[3] For comparison, see Matthew Davies, "TNI and POLRI Forces in West Papua: Restructuring & Reasserting Sovereignty", APSNet Special Reports, August 17, 2006, http://nautilus.org/apsnet/tni-and-polri-forces-in-west-papua-restructuring-reasserting-sovereignty/ (accessed August 18, 2012). Davies estimates that the total number of all security apparatus (TNI and Polri) in West Papua is 23,900 personnel. It consists of 12,800 TNI personnel and 11,100 Polri. Former Regional Military NI Maj. Gen. Nurdin Zainal has said that the number of troops in West Papua added will be between 12,000 and 15,000 troops. Tapol, a Human Rights group, claims that this will make the number of troops in West Papua swell to 45,000 to 50,000. See “Military build-up threatens Land of Peace campaign,” Tapol Bulletin No. 179, July 2005. The claim seems plausible with the plan to build a new 3rd Kostrad Division in Sorong, West Papua. But the plan was aborted.

[4] This was the case in Aceh during the escalation of violence in 2003. See Matthew N. Davies, Indonesia’s War over Aceh. Last Stand on Mecca’s Porch, London: Routledge, 2006, p. 61.

[5] The Brigif-20 headquarters is located in Timika, a city close to the location of U.S. mining company Freeport McMoRan. Timika is also the base for Yonif 754/ Eme Neme Kangasi. While Yonif 755/Yalet is based in Merauke and Yonif 756/Wi Mane Sile in Wamena.

[6] These combat engineer detachments are based in Jayapura (Denzipur 10); Merauke (Denzipur 11); Nabire (Denzipur 12); and Sorong (Denzipur 13).

[7] DenKav-3 is based in Timika.

[8] See Davies, TNI and POLRI Forces in West Papua, p. 4.

[9] The main reason to shorten the term is to prevent “digression” by the BKO battalions, especially those who are assigned in the border areas. It is widely known that battalions that are assigned in the borders are often involved in illegal logging or smuggling. Units in the border security posts are rotated every three months to prevent digression.

[10] The strength of the Indonesian Air Force in Papua is around 1,500 personnel. It comes from one Paskhas battalion (around 800); four airport bases (150 each), and two radar stations (around 50 each).

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Papuan Search for Unity In December Vanuatu Meeting


Participants in the Vanuatu meeting. Photo from SuaraPapua.com.


Papuan leaders representing the "People of The Land of Papua" met in Vanuatu in early December to seek a common approach to the ongoing crisis in West Papua. The meeting agreed to form the United Liberation Movement for West Papua (Persatuan Pergerakan Pembebasan untuk Papua Barat). A joint declaration was reportedly signed by Dr. Rex Rumakiek of West Papua National Coalition for Liberation , Edison Waromi of representatives of the Federal Republic of West Papua, and Bucthar Tabuni of the KNPB. Five people were reportedly elected to oversee the new organization. The new coalition will apply to join the Melanesian Spearhead Group.

The West Papua Report will have more on the meeting in next month's issue.

March in support of West Papua in Vanuatu's Port Vila. Photo: RNZI/Hilaire Bule.

Papuans Detained as They Celebrate KNPB Anniversary

A number of West Papuans were detained by security forces on November 19 as they gathered peacefully to celebrate the sixth anniversary of the founding of the West Papua National Committee (KNPB) and the launch of the International Lawyers for West Papua (ILWP) in the Netherlands. Ten of the activists are to be charged with rebellion.

The KNPB held demonstrations in Port Numbay/Jayapura, Biak, Timika, Manokwari, Lapago/Wamena, Pakpak, Sorong, Dogiyai, Merauke, Kaimana and Nabire.

A total of 31 West Papuans were reportedly arrested and 3 shot by the Indonesian police in Nabire, Dogiyai and Kaimana on November 19 and 23.

In Dogiyai, Indonesian police shot one and arrested 14. In Kaimana, the Indonesian police reportedly sought to intimidate the gathering. In Merauke, police, supplemented by Indonesian intelligence personnel, also sought to intimidate the Papuans who rallied.

The largest gathering was held in Timika, where thousands of Papuans came together. Papuans who attended this gathering came from all over the country. A video of the demonstration featuring Papuans from the Asmat Region can be seen at: www.youtube.com/watch?v=WwEPMXNf-og

The KNPB calls for a referendum regarding West Papua's political future, rejects the proposed division of West Papua, and opposes transmigration.

Papuans Behind Bars Documents at Least 69 Papuan Political Prisoners

Papuans Behind Bars reports at least 69 Papuans political prisoners are languishing in Indonesian detention. The report notes that at least 46 members of the West Papua National Committee (KNPB) were arrested in October in Jayapura and Merauke for participation in peaceful demonstrations. These demonstrations had been organized in support of calls for the release of two French journalists (see November West Papua Report).

The report notes that in the context of the Jayapura and Merauke arrests "police claimed he KNPB is an illegal organization as it is not registered with the Department of National Unity and Politics (Kesatuan Bangsa dan Politik, Kesbangpol) and affiliated symbols or attributes are also therefore illegal." This police made similar claims in June 2014 arrests in Boven Digoel.

Papuan Behind Bars reported that Indonesian human rights group Imparsial has called suppression of freedom of expression in Papua is "the worst in Indonesia, particularly when it comes to the treatment of KNPB rallies."

U.S. Reaffirms Commitment to Assist TNI Absent Reforms

U.S. Ambassador to Indonesia Robert Blake reaffirmed the U.S. readiness to assist the Indonesian military "to improve its maritime security and to strengthen its international defense capabilities," as well as to address "challenges such as terrorism and the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction." Blake, speaking in a November 26 public lecture at Depok West Java campus of the University of Indonesia, added the U.S. was "pleased to play a role in supporting Indonesia's military modernization, including through provision of world-class American military systems and technology."

Blake did not address concern over the TNI reform, notably its lack of accountability for decades of human rights abuse, failure to divest itself of an empire of legal and illegal enterprises and its failure to subordinate itself to civilian rule. These reforms are essential to genuine modernization of the security forces in Indonesia's democratic transformation.

New Defense Minister Calls for Return To Past Structure of Repression

New Defense Minister Ryacudu Ryamizard has revealed his intention to return to the Suharto era's overweening military role in various civilian sectors.

The Jakarta Post noted the sense of deja vu associated with the Ryamizard plan: "The doctrine is an all-encompassing view that provides leeway for the military's 'involvement' in civilian areas and institutions ­ more or less how the military operated during Soeharto’s three-decades-long rule."


Ryamizard has repeatedly emphasized the need for the military to expand its engagement in other sectors, with an expectation that it would eventually revive the outdated military doctrine of Total Defense System (Sistem Pertahanan Semesta).

The Post said that "Ryamizard has repeatedly emphasized the need for the military to expand its engagement in other sectors, with an expectation that it would eventually revive the outdated military doctrine of Total Defense System (Sistem Pertahanan Semesta)."

Ryamizard wants to restore the military's domestic security powers. The 1998 reform movement ended the military's domestic security role and placed the police in charge of internal security.

He wants to bring back the military’s community-service program, "known as AMD or ABRI Masuk Desa (military enters the village)" during Suharto's New Order era, when it served "as a tool to spy on any form of resistance to his rule and to gain political support from villagers..." And he plans to "propose a greater role for the TNI to the House of Representatives" in counter-terrorism.

The consequences for West Papua should the military enhance its influence in civilian sectors are dire. Ryamizard intends to address separatism as he perceives it in West Papua much as he dealt with independence-minded Acehnese over a decade ago. It is not surprising that in comments to the Post he specifically referenced the fate of the Soviet Union: "The Soviet Union was torn apart not because it had no advanced weapons. It was dissolved because it did not apply the Total Defense System."

Joint Command for West Papua

The Jakarta Post reports that President Widodo has agreed to a TNI plan to form "defense groups" which would integrate army, navy and air force elements under a joint command, known as Kogabwilhan. These integrated "defense groups" would be placed at what the Post describes as "certain defense flashpoints integral to preserving the country’s territorial integrity and sovereignty." Indonesian security officials and others regularly speak of West Papua as posing the principal threat to Indonesia's territorial integrity.

The Post report strongly suggests that civilian control and direction of these "groups" will be limited. The article notes: "Each group’s commander, a three-star general, will be given the authority to respond without having to go through red tape at the TNI headquarters in Jakarta."

The new Widodo administration is also expanding Indonesia's naval capacity. Currently, the country divides the navy’s tasks between two commands: the Western Region Armada Command with headquarters in Jakarta and the navy’s Eastern Region Armada Command in Surabaya, East Java.

The Eastern Armada is to be based in Sorong, in West Papua, and Surabaya will host the headquarters for a new Central Armada. The government also plans to build two new army commands in Manado, North Sulawesi, and Papua.

Widespread and long-standing calls by Papuans for a demilitarization of West Papua appear to be getting short shrift from the new Widodo administration.


Indonesia Should Step Out of Papua with Pride, Says Jailed Activist

Michael Bachelard, the Indonesia correspondent for Fairfax Media, published an exclusive interview with Papuan political prisoner Filep Karma. In the secretly recorded interview, Karma said that Papuans were racially discriminated against, called "monkeys" by Javanese Indonesians and should have the right to "build our country, our land, upon the culture of being Melanesian, not Malay." Karma was jailed for 15 years in 2004 for raising the morning star flag, a peaceful political act.

Logging in West Papua In the Context of the "Bloody Wasior Events" in 2001

In 2001, Papuans in Wondama Bay District were subjected to brutal attacks by troops working for two logging companies. The assault on the villages included killings, torture, rape, and forced disappearances. Villages fled their homes which were burnt. The events are known as the "Bloody Wasior."

In 2003, the National Human Rights Commission’s Team to Study Human Rights Problems in Papua found that initial evidence indicated that crimes against humanity had taken place in Wasior. The Indonesian government has never sought to prosecute those responsible for these crimes.

New logging operations have roused fears among local people that events could be replayed.


Theys Eluay "was only one piece of the large mosaic of silenced history of the forgotten... Perhaps it is time for us to restore their dignity as a gesture of solidarity to those who have been silenced and forgotten in our history."

Budi Hernawan Revisits the Murder of Theys Eluay

In a revealing and timely article in the Jakarta Post ("Not a mere case of bad apples: Acts of state terrorism") Budi Hernawan, November 18, revisited the 2001 murder of Papuan political leader Theys Eluay. Hernawan writes that while several soldiers were convicted for their role in the assassination, Indonesian officials have never investigated the disappearance of Eluay's driver Aristoteles Masoka in the course of the murder.

Hernawan laments the reality that these and other horrendous crimes are quickly forgotten in Indonesia. Theys Eluay, Hernawan writes that he "was only one piece of the large mosaic of silenced history of the forgotten.

"Aristoteles Masoka is even more forgotten. Perhaps it is time for us to restore their dignity as a gesture of solidarity to those who have been silenced and forgotten in our history, in the wake of our commemoration of national heroes."

MSG Headache, West Papuan Heartache? Indonesia’s Melanesian Foray

The Asia-Pacific Journal carried a timely and insightful analysis of Indonesia's efforts to gain influence in the Melanesia, putting "itself forward in Pacific political forums as the official representative of ‘its’ Melanesian populations ­ a considerable number of whom support independence from the Indonesian state." The analysis by Camellia Webb-Gannon and Jim Elmslie notes that Melanesian sympathy and incipient support for West Papuan demands for self-determination are driving Jakarta's new attention to Melanesia.

Link to this issue: http://etan.org/issues/wpapua/2014/1412wpap.htm

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