How Washington backed bloodbath in Indonesia

By Deirdre Griswold

Oct. 5, 1995 – When the last decade’s setbacks for the world socialist movement are fairly evaluated, and the external, objective factors are considered along with subjective problems of leadership—one antecedent event will stand out as having had a profound effect on the fate of tens of millions of exploited and oppressed workers and peasants.

That event was the massacre of the Indonesian progressive movement by the fascist military in 1965-66.

The 30th anniversary of the beginning of this bloody process is now here. So far, little has been said about it in the corporate media. In this year when it seems every serious TV program is a documentary on some anniversary or other, the reticence to even mention the Indonesian massacre is conspicuous.

Half the U.S. population is too young to recall these events. Few of the older half ever heard about them. They were as underreported then as now.

Yet in a few brief months, the cream of Indonesia’s labor, peasant, youth and women’s movements was mowed down in a vicious counter-revolutionary assault.

Estimates in the Western press ran from 300,000 to 1 million killed. It was the Asian equivalent of Hitler’s mass murders in Europe.

And behind this bold offensive by the Indonesian generals was the hand of the CIA, the Pentagon and U.S. imperialist politicians.

Poster: Nobodycorp. Internationale Unlimited


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