Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Kopassus killings

A Jakarta Post oped Kopassus and the legend of ‘Mpu Gandring’ by journalist Aboeprijadi Santoso puts Nairn's charges of TNI and Kopassus political killings in Aceh last year. Santoso describes the heightened tension in Aceh since early last year "when the regional command was led by a Kopassus general who was dismissed shortly afterwards."

Santoso writes: issue is not a formal Kopassus assignment [to Aceh] (which was probably none since this would explicitly violate the Helsinki pact), but covert operations involving individual Kopassus members.

Neither, unfortunately, has the military been able to spell out the reform of the Kopassus, which they claim to have performed during the last 12 years....

Many of the atrocities in the former conflict areas, the killings, poisoning and missing activists elsewhere in Indonesia have been linked to the Kopassus or its individual members. None of these has been brought to justice or satisfactorily resolved. Impunity thus runs as a thread from the 1965-66 tragedy, to troubles in East Timor, Aceh and Papua.

Ask any local around the former Rumah Geudong in Pidie, Aceh, or the surviving families in Kraras, near Viqueque, East Timor. They will tell you what they know about the Kopassus (or its predecessors, the RPKAD).
To be fair, the killing-machine image should include some infamous battalions of the Army’s Strategic Reserves Command or Kostrad (in the case of East Timor) and the Police Mobile Brigade (Brimob) in Aceh.

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