Monday, June 04, 2007

Crisis in East Timor

Crisis in East Timor - This site provides an analysis into the involvement of Indonesia and various other countries and agencies during the chaos in East Timor which came to a head in 1999. It has extensive coverage on the 1999 votes, the militia terror, and the UN intervention. It looks into the role the media took, has analysis and essays, and includes links to more information.

From the site:

East Timor was ruled by Portugal for about 3 centuries. During World War II, thousands of East Timorese lost their lives helping Australia forces fight against the Japanese. East Timor was then invaded by Indonesia shortly after Portugal abruptly left, in 1975. This was the day after U.S. President Ford's visit to Indonesia, with what people have suspected as being a "green light" to invade. At that time, Indonesia had military, economic and political support from countries such as UK, USA and Australia, for various reasons including the oil and gas reserves, a strategic location, various trade and cheap labor related interests. 200,000 people are said to have been killed since 1975 -- one third of the entire East Timorese population. Meanwhile human rights abuses continued.

What Happened in East Timor?

- August 1999 saw a vote on self determination in East Timor.

- Leading up to this and after the vote where there was an overwhelming majority who voted for independence, Indonesian military-backed militia and paramilitaries went on a terror campaign with slow international reaction.

- Much of East Timor was destroyed and at some points there were estimates from 200,000 to 300,000 refugees created with up to 600,000 people displaced.

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