Saturday, May 31, 2008

`Indonesiagate': Obama's Historic U.S. Embassy Family Connection--Part 3

(See below for parts 1-2)

The U.S. Embassy in Indonesia that employed Barack Obama’s mother in the late 1960s apparently played an historically significant role in supporting the 1965 right-wing military coup in Indonesia. As Pretext For Mass Murder by John Roosa recalled in 2006:

“An NSC [National Security Council] committee approved a proposal in March 1965 for covert actions such as `support to existing anti-Communist groups,’ `black letter operations,’ and `media operations.’…

“U.S. officials repeatedly informed the [Indonesian] army generals that the United States would support them if they moved against the PKI [Communist Party of Indonesia]…

“As the death squads fanned out across the country to hunt down PKI members, the embassy was delighted. [U.S.] Ambassador Green observed in early November [1965] that even the `smaller fry’ in the PKI were `being systematically arrested and jailed or executed.’ In Central Java the army was mobilizing and arming militias of Muslim youth to `keep them out in front against PKI.’

“Green noted in the same memo that the embassy had `made clear’ to a contact in the [Indonesian] army `that Embassy and USG (U.S. Government) generally sympathetic with and admiring of what army doing.’…Green assured Washington that the army was…`working hard at destroying PKI and I, for one, have increasing respect for its determination and organization in carrying out this crucial assignment.’

“The United States backed up its words of encouragement with material aid. The army needed communications equipment to link its various headquarters around the country so it could better coordinate the drive against the PKI. Sometime in late 1965 the United States flew in state-of-the-art mobile radios from Clark Air Base in the Philippines…The United States…had a blow-by-blow account of the army’s assault on the PKI, overhearing for instance, `commands from Suharto’s intelligence unit to kill particular person at given locations.’ A member of the embassy’s political affairs section, Robert Martens, helped the army by providing lists of the names of PKI members. Martens admitted in a letter to the Washington Post that he handed over the names of `a few thousand’ members, whom he disingenuously termed `leaders and senior cadre’—as if a list of that many names could include only the hard-core leadership.

“The embassy also transferred a large sum of money to the army-created civilian front called the Action Front for Crushing the September 30th Movement (Kap-Gestapu). The actions of this organization were, as Ambassador Green noted, `fully consonant with and coordinated by the army.’ To help this front hold demonstrations and carry out its `current repressive efforts targeted against PKI,’ Green authorized in early December [1965] the granting of 50 million rupiah to the front’s representative, Adam Malik…”

Next: “Indonesiagate”: Obama’s Historic U.S. Embassy Family Connection—Part 4