Beware there be Jinn in the forests: Indonesia and West Papua, a clash of cultures

Beware there be Jinn in the forests: Indonesia and West Papua, a clash of cultures

Last weekend I took a stroll through the Mesopotamia exhibition at the Melbourne Museum. While reading the commentary attached to a number of the artefacts I realised, in a profound way, that what we call civilization is actually a reaction to and against nature. Some cultures, those we choose to call ‘primitive’, ‘savage’ or ‘uncivilized’ attempt to live in harmony with nature, or at least attempt to develop a rapport ...

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Portia’s Lament: Western greed and the death of the indigenous cultures of West Papua

Portia’s Lament: Western greed and the death of the indigenous cultures of West Papua

Fragments from the Alfoxden Notebook There he would stand In the still covert of some rock, Or gaze upon the moon until its light Fell like a strain of music on his soul And seemed to sink into his very heart. Why is it we feel So little for each other, but for this, That we with nature have no sympathy, Or with such things as we have no ...

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Silence no longer so golden

Silence no longer so golden

Complicity takes many forms, as discussed in posts by both Bakchos and me. Many believe that silent complicity is the least culpable, but to my mind if the silence enables the perpetrator of the wrongdoing to continue causing harm, then the silence is of a gross kind. An example of such silent complicity allowing continuing harm is described by Steven Miles generating discussion in both the Lancet and via his ...

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Corporate crimes against humanity a product of our global economy

Corporate crimes against humanity a product of our global economy

Crimes against humanity, torture, prolonged arbitrary detention, extrajudicial executions — all of those human rights norms are defined by actions. They’re not defined by whether the perpetrator is a human being or a corporation or another kind of entity. Paul Hoffman representing the 12 Nigerian petitioners in Kiobel v. Royal Dutch Petroleum The issue in Kiobel v. Royal Dutch Petroleum an issue central to the lives of many indigenous people ...

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The Jayapura Five: Our choices and actions do affect the lives of others

The Jayapura Five: Our choices and actions do affect the lives of others

Little fly, Thy summer’s play My thoughtless hand Has brushed away. Am not I A fly like thee? Or art not thou A man like me? For I dance And drink and sing, Till some blind hand Shall brush my wing. If thought is life And strength and breath, And the want Of thought is death, Then am I A happy fly, If I live, Or if I die. William ...

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Am I not a man and a brother: A campaign for someone else’s rights

Am I not a man and a brother: A campaign for someone else’s rights

In the late afternoon of May 22, 1787, a group of a dozen men officially assembled at James Phillips’ bookstore and printing shop located at 2 George Yard, London. While the bookstore and printing shop have been replaced by a modern glass and steel building, home of Adelphi Capital, the idea that 2 George Yard gave birth to lives on. ‘Lives on’ is perhaps not the right phrase for the ...

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Genocide in West Papua, collective responsibility and the role of Ernst & Young

Genocide in West Papua, collective responsibility and the role of Ernst & Young

The TNI under Suharto was seen as different from other armies because: Indonesian army sees itself as quite different from other armies in the world, because it was never created as an instrument of the state, but was itself involved in the creation of the state. Thus the military considers itself the embodiment of Indonesian nationalism. In theory, it remains above the state, and technically does not consider itself answerable ...

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West Papua and the vote of no choice!

West Papua and the vote of no choice!

These feelings which we Cubans have already acquired will have to be shared by someday. Today it hurts us if a Cuban is hungry, if a Cuban has no doctor, if a Cuban child suffers or is uneducated, or if a family has no housing. It hurts us even though it’s not our brother, our son, or our father. Why shouldn’t we feel hurt if we see an Angolan child ...

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What is actually the root of the problem in Papua?

What is actually the root of the problem in Papua?

The following is an extract of an interview between Bambang Dharmono, former Aceh military commander and negotiator representing Indonesia for the Aceh Monitoring Mission (AMM), to lead the Presidential Unit for the Acceleration of Development in Papua and West Papua (UP4B) and journalist Nani Afrida which appeared in The Jakarta Post on 16 December, 2011. The question posed by Nani to Bambang was “What is actually the root of the ...

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Indonesia and Australia the illegitimate states of the Asia Pacific Region

Indonesia and Australia the illegitimate states of the Asia Pacific Region

What is self-determination? The notion of self-determination as a universal principle, whether viewed through a political, moral, or legal lens, has been and continues to be imprecise and in dire need of further clarification. U.S. president Woodrow Wilson understood self-determination to be the belief that every people had the right to select their own form of government, to “choose the sovereignty under which they shall live” and thus be free ...

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Bintang Kejora: a struggle for a new dawn

Bintang Kejora: a struggle for a new dawn

Former Kopassus commander Lt. Gen. (ret.) Prabowo Subianto (who was “forced to retire because of his involvement in the kidnapping, torture, and murder of democracy activists in early 1998”) has argued: Indonesian culture is very violent and the military is a mirror of society. … This whole culture in Indonesia is a culture of violence between tribes and ethnic groups. …This is something that we are aware of, something we ...

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AFP implicated in West Papuan genocide

AFP implicated in West Papuan genocide

The following is a media release from Westpapuamedia.info According to credible local sources in Puncak Jaya, Indonesian troops razed a civilian village while conducting a massive offensive against National Liberation Army guerrillas of Goliat Tabuni. Undercover local human right sources have claimed that at 1530 local time on December 3, that two platoons from the “Coconut” brigade of Gegana Brimob anti-terrorist police, set fire to a church, houses, and guard ...

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Anti-Aboriginal racism rife in the Australian Community

Anti-Aboriginal racism rife in the Australian Community

The National Tertiary Education Union (“NTEU”) has released the findings from the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander member survey ‘I’m Not Racist But … Report on Cultural Respect, Racial Discrimination, Lateral Violence and related Policy at Australia’s Universities’. The survey findings indicate that Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander academic and general/professional staff continue to experience racial discrimination and a general lack of cultural respect in Australian universities. Following the numerous ...

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Rio Tinto: juggernaut of cultural fascism and participant in slow-motion genocide

Rio Tinto: juggernaut of cultural fascism and participant in slow-motion genocide

A rough translation of Rio Tinto from Spanish into English is Red River. Spain’s Rio Tinto is characterized by deep red water that is highly acidic (pH 1.7—2.5) and rich in heavy metals. Over 5000 years of mining pollution have contributed to the river becoming an extreme environment. The Rio Tinto holds a special place in the annals of mining, human exploitation, environmental vandalism and cultural fascism. The Rio Tinto ...

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Corporate greed and an update on a call for a Royal Commission into the AFP

Corporate greed and an update on a call for a Royal Commission into the AFP

I have spent the last few weeks travelling around remote Indigenous communities collecting signatures in support of a Royal Commission into the AFP and statements in support of my application to the United Nations Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights(“OHCHR”). Simultaneously, I have been drumming up support for a personal message to the United Nations Security Council arguing that Australia, because of the entrenched and systemic racism that ...

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Aborigines and the Australian Justice System

Aborigines and the Australian Justice System

For very many Aboriginal Australians the phrase ‘Australian justice system’ is an oxymoron. There are any number of reasons, many of which are justified, why we as Aboriginal Australians think of the Australian ‘just-us’ system as being exactly as it says, a system that is just for us, which if you are an Aboriginal only serves to further entrench your marginalization. The following exchange between a Canberra based public prosecutor ...

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Systemic and Institutional Racism and Systemic Bias in the Australian justice system

Systemic and Institutional Racism and Systemic Bias in the Australian justice system

While discussing the competing merits of Australia’s subtle forms of genocide it employs against its indigenous people versus Indonesia’s more direct and brutal methods it employs in West Papua with Pius the author of ALP corruption, a suicide in the AFP and death threats made against a three year old – Human Rights Australian style I was asked exactly what I mean by “subtle forms of genocide”. After giving this ...

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You can’t preach the moral high ground and walk in the gutter: Australia and West Papua

You can’t preach the moral high ground and walk in the gutter: Australia and West Papua

Recurrent themes in Australian politics since the events of 9/11 and the beginning of the euphemistically though erroneously named ‘war on terror’ have been national security, border protection and exporting the ‘rule of law’ to the developing nations of the Pacific. Implied within the concept of the ‘rule of law’ must be the notion of equality before the law. By equality I don’t mean that nebulous idea continuously sprouted by ...

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YINDJIBARNDI ABORIGINAL CORPORATION and 'SOLOMON HUB’

YINDJIBARNDI ABORIGINAL CORPORATION and ‘SOLOMON HUB’

Following is a press release issued by the YIndjibarndi Aboriginal Corporation on 4 August, 2011. Under the heading: THE FACTS ABOUT FMG’s PROPOSED ‘SOLOMON HUB’ IN YINDJIBARNDI COUNTRY.  I have left the press release as it was written to give the Yindjibarndi a chance to speak for themselves: FMG has applied for 43 exploration licences, 4 mining leases and more than 100 miscellaneous licences in Yindjibarndi Country. The proposed “Solomon” ...

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