Tuesday, May 03, 2005

BP, fake democracy, fake Moslem militias, genocide.

http://www.guardian.co.uk/comment/story/0,3604,1475176,00.html

BP in bed with the killers in Indonesia?

In the Guardian, 3 May 2005, George Monbiot writes about West Papua (the Indonesian part of New Guinea) where BP is soon to start developing a gas field.

West Papua had been ruled by the Dutch as part of the Dutch East Indies. In 1962 JF Kennedy told the Dutch that West Papua must not become independent; instead it must be handed over to Indonesia. Kennedy wanted to keep in with the Indonesians.

The US agreed that eventually the UN would hold a referendum in which "all adult Papuans have the right to participate", but, the referendum would be rigged.

Monbiot writes:

"So instead of a referendum in which "all adult Papuans" participated, in 1969 the UN oversaw a rather different process:

"1,022 men were selected by Indonesian soldiers, taught the words 'I want Indonesia', then lined up at gunpoint.

"One man who refused to say his lines was shot.

"Others were threatened with being dropped out of helicopters.

"This rigorous democratic exercise resulted in a unanimous vote for Indonesian rule."

A report by academics at Yale Law School concludes that there is "a strong indication that the Indonesian government has committed genocide against the West Papuans".

According to human rights groups, around 100,000 Papuans have been killed by Indonesia.
According to Monbiot, "the armed forces have bombed, napalmed and strafed tribal villages and tortured and murdered their people.

"The government has sought to wipe out Papuan culture through forced assimilation and mass immigration. The purpose of these schemes, according to a former governor of West Papua, was to "give birth to a new generation of people without curly hair, sowing the seeds for greater beauty".

Indonesia's genocidal intent is undimmed. Today, villages in the Papuan highlands are still being burnt out by soldiers, and their people killed or forced to flee into the forest.

According to BP, the Indonesian government has started granting autonomy to the Papuan people.

Monbiot points out:

"It has done no such thing. It has failed to implement the "special autonomy" laws it passed, and instead has divided the nation into three regions, controlled directly by Jakarta. When the Papuans tried to set up their own assembly - the Papuan presidium council - its chairman, Theys Eluay, was murdered by the army. The Indonesian government is currently flying in an extra 15,000 troops. In the last few weeks the repression has intensified...

"In March the Indonesian army was accused by the head of the West Papua Baptist Church of stealing $267,000 of aid destined for West Papua. How confident can we be that the money from the gas project won't go the same way?

BP is training local people to guard its plant.

Monbiot:

"As the Free West Papua Campaign (www.freewestpapua.org points out, the Indonesian army has a standard technique for gaining control of extractive industries. It creates an incident, often attacking its own soldiers or burning down a village or two, blames it on the rebels and then insists it must ‘secure the area’ - and, of course, any revenue arising from the area.

"The army is already building up civilian militias close to the gas field. Some of them are controlled by Laskar Jihad, which is affiliated to al-Qaida.

"BP derives its authority to act from an occupying power in the midst of an attempted genocide. How credible, then, are its claims that its hands are clean?"

www.monbiot.com

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Laskar Jihad is believed to be run by the US trained Indonesian military. Al Qaida is believed to be a front for the security services of certain nations.

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