Beloved Land: stories, struggles, and secrets from Timor-Leste

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Cornell University Press, , pp. Blending narrative history, travelogue, and personal reminiscences based on four years of living in the country, Gordon Peake shows the daunting hurdles that the people of Timor-Leste must overcome to build a nation from scratch, and how much the international community has to learn if it is to help rather than hinder the process. Family politics, squabbles, power struggles, old romances, and even older grudges are woven into life in this land of intrigue and rumours in the most remarkable ways.

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Above all, Beloved Land is a story about the one million East Timorese who speak nearly 20 different languages, and who are exuberantly building their nation. Written with verve and deep affection, the book introduces a set of colourful Timorese and international characters, and brings them to life unforgettably. Beloved Land shows that the story of Timor-Leste as much more than the narrow litany of conflict and violence often presented in the media.

Increasingly, it is becoming a story about the exploitation of oil and gas, and whether Timorese leaders can steward the revenues they receive from these resources to benefit a rapidly expanding population. It is also a story about international aid and its inadequacies. In just over a decade, over eight billion dollars have been spent in a territory half the size of Tasmania, but the majority of Timorese remain in deep poverty. It's also a survival manual for bewildered Malae foreigners in this complex and resilient nation.

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The mixture of forthrightness and warmth, and knowledge, makes this book not simply informative but in a quiet way exemplary. Scribe, , pp. Where the past is everywhere and the future uncertain , reviewed by Simon Roughneen, The Edge Review. Exotic traps for the rash foreign writer , reviewed by Gillian Terzis, The Australian. Audio: "Post-conflict East Timor: will it now survive the 'resource curse'? Tri-lingual catalog of exhibit, first presented in Dili on the occasion of the 10th anniversary of Independence with support of Timor Aid and the Embassy of France in Indonesia and Timor-Leste.

For many, the island of Timor may seem to be one of the remote places on earth. Yet, surprisingly, Timor was very early incorporated into worldwide networks. This is the illustrated story of home Timor-Leste came to be the first state of the third millennium and a member of the international community through trade, diplomacy and culture.

In English, French and Portuguese. Economic and political perspectives, and regional integration , in Editions Arkuirs, , 72 pp. Eben Kirksey first went to West Papua in as an exchange student.

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His later study of West Papua's resistance to the Indonesian occupiers and the forces of globalization morphed as he discovered that collaboration, rather than resistance, was the primary strategy of this dynamic social movement. Accompanying indigenous activists to Washington, London, and the offices of the oil giant BP, Kirksey saw the revolutionaries' knack for getting inside institutions of power and building coalitions with unlikely allies, including many Indonesians.

He discovered that the West Papuans' pragmatic activism was based on visions of dramatic transformations on coming horizons, of a future in which they would give away their natural resources in grand humanitarian gestures, rather than passively watch their homeland be drained of timber, gold, copper, and natural gas. During a lengthy, brutal occupation, West Papuans have harbored a messianic spirit and channeled it in surprising directions. Kirksey studied West Papua's movement for freedom as a broad-based popular uprising gained traction from Blending extensive ethnographic research with indigenous parables, historical accounts, and compelling narratives of his own experiences, he argues that seeking freedom in entangled worlds requires negotiating complex interdependencies.

Eben Kirksey makes accessible the unique imagery of West Papuans long subject to racism, corporate exploitation, and a brutal military. A new book about the indigenous people of Indonesia's Papua region says Papuans have seemingly never-ending reserves of hope for self-determination. Freedom in Entangled Worlds is the culmination of almost 15 years of research about the West Papuan freedom struggle by American cultural anthropologist Eben Kirksey.

His book documents the way West Papuans have collaborated with outside forces to further their cause rather than continue resistance against the Indonesian military forces in the region. The book provides an engrossing history of the past two decades of this region, as well as a pointed narrative that implicates the Indonesian government and the multinational corporations seeking West Papua's natural resources in grave human rights abuses and promotion of state terror.

Maxim, Choice.

Duke University Press, , pp. Other reviews excerpted here. Review by C. The first book about the traditional music of Timor-Leste will appeal to those interested in the traditional culture of Timor, particularly its music, and the visual splendor of the country. Twenty traditional songs complete with text and music notation in both Western and Indonesian systems.

A separate page coloring booklet, Lafaek Holds a Party , introduces Timor's traditional instruments to children aged 5 to 12, with delightful illustrations by Timorese artists, Tony Amaral and Pelle Pereira. Ros then began visiting Timor-Leste regularly to record its special music. The skilled musicians who participated were acutely aware of the importance of recording their music for posterity.

The translators and assistants who helped to organize the recording sessions, the artists from Arte Moris Art School, and the young Timorese from the audiovisual archive, Centro Archivo Max Stahl Timor-Leste, helped to make this project happen. The book is wonderful and everyone love it. I am playing the music the sound in my car. Loving it. T welve women tell their stories of how they fought for Timor-Leste's East Timor independence.

Through oral history interviews, this book illuminates the lives of 12 women who were part of the clandestine independence movement during the Indonesian occupation of Timor-Leste. First published in Tetun in in , this is the first time these stories have appeared in english. She has contributed to many books on Timorese women from to the present, either as a story-teller, story-collector or editor. Laura S. A similar combination of idealism and pragmatism led to the compilation of this book Gaining independence has been a giant step, but it is not enough to achieve equality.


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A history of the struggle for independence by East Timor, after it was invaded by Indonesia in The occupation, which lasted 24 years, was immediately resisted. A continuum of effort - between the armed freedom fighters in the mountains, the resilience of urban supporters, and international activism and support - eventually brought about liberation in September Given that the Timor rebels did not have a land border with a friendly state, nor an external supplier of weapons, nor a liberated area in which to recover between guerrilla operations, their successful resistance is unique in the history of guerrilla warfare and independence struggles.

Equally uncommon was an unexpected weapon in the struggle: a remarkable display of strategic nonviolent action. The Independence of East Timor is the first study to integrate all the major factors in East Timor's independence struggle. Series: Sussex Library of Asian Studies.

The book provides a documented and detailed account of particular events and periods during the Indonesian occupation, in each case assessing the ways in which internal opposition and international actions combined to influence decision-making in Indonesia, the USA, Europe and Australia In writing The Independence of East Timor, Clinton Fernandes has opened up an issue of crucial importance in our understanding of the processes by which East Timor attained its independence.

John Taylor, Asian Affairs. Professor Fernandes has produced a remarkable study of the main events from the lead-up to the occupation, to the bloody events in The Boy and the Crocodile is the legend of East Timor, about how the island of Timor got its curious shape. It is also a parable about kindness, and now a children's book that is benefiting vulnerable kids. The book was illustrated by children from the Familia Hope Orphanage in East Timor, including many who lost their parents in the country's violent struggle for independence.

Approximately 4, dependent East Timorese children were transferred to Indonesia during the occupation of East Timor by Indonesia between and Many were taken by soldiers to be adopted, others were sent to institutions in Indonesia by government and religious organizations. This book is the first detailed account of the history of the transfer of these children to Indonesia. Helene van Klinken worked in Java, Indonesia, in university contexts between and , and to She first visited East Timor in after the territory was opened to outside visitors.

Book Launch: Beloved Land: stories, struggles, and secrets from Timor-Leste

In she worked as a political affairs officer for the United Nations in the lead up to the independence vote, and in was a volunteer at the CAVR the Commission for Reception, Truth and Reconciliation in East Timor. Together with Achnesia Felina Manganang, she founded the Istoriaku website to assist those transported from East Timor and document their experiences.

Monash University Publishing. Radio Australia: Lost children of East Timor search for families. A riveting narrative filled with personal observations, documentary evidence, and eyewitness accounts, "If You Leave Us Here, We Will Die" engages essential questions about political violence, international humanitarian intervention, genocide, and transitional justice. Robinson debunks claims that those committing the violence in East Timor acted spontaneously, attributing their actions instead to the calculation of Indonesian leaders, and to a "culture of terror" within the Indonesian army.

Launching Gordon Peake, Beloved Land: Stories, Struggles and Secrets from Timor-Leste

He argues that major powers--notably the United States, Australia, and the United Kingdom--were complicit in the genocide of the late s and the violence of At the same time, Robinson stresses that armed intervention supported by those powers in late was vital in averting a second genocide. Advocating accountability, the book chronicles the failure to bring those responsible for the violence to justice.

Even if you don't have much baseline knowledge about the conflicts between these Southeast Asian islands, this book will illuminate the complicated history is accessible terms. Robinson offers crucial perspective on modern colonialism and explores issues of accountability and justice with aplomb. Princeton University Press. ETAN on Facebook. ETAN's other twitter accounts:.

Pride and Prejudice: LGBTQ Rights in Asia's Newest Nation of Timor-Leste

Follow TimorNews. Follow WestPapuaNews. Follow actindonesia. Australian Shirley Shackleton was launched into an unexpected life as a human rights activist when her journalist husband Greg Shackleton was murdered in East Timor in Her story is filled with a profound sense of purpose, enduring love for her late husband, and a fierce determination to seek truth and justice not only about the events leading up to the murders of the journalists who came to be known as Balibo Five, but for the cause of democracy and freedom in East Timor.

Shirley Shackleton's courage is inspiring.


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It is exceptional because of its raw intellectual honesty forged from murder and massacre in East Timor during a cover-up which prevailed for 25 years. It is exceptional because it confronts then exposes blind-eyed Australian diplomacy. The consequence of that raised consciousness? Independence for East Timor in and a measure of belated redemption for Australia and the international community. Winner of The Walkley Book Award for B Balibo by Jill Jolliffe.

In October , five young television reporters travelled from Australia to report on the brewing unrest in the region. It was a journey that would be their last: The Balibo 5, as they came to be known, were killed by the Indonesian military as they filmed the infantry troops advancing into the border town of Balibo. In the months that followed, freelance journalist Roger East, who went to investigate their fate, was also executed. The result of over 30 years of personal investigations and tireless research, Balibo provides a unique first-hand account of the deaths of the five journalists and East.

T his revised edition of the book originally published as Cover-Up, on which the film Balibo is based, reveals previously hidden details of one of th is shameful episode. The centrepiece is the most comprehensive collection so far of interviews of East Timorese with links to the Balibo incident, which highlights the abundance of evidence available for the prosecution of those responsible, among them Captain Yunus Yosfiah now a retired lieutenant-general , and a Kopassus special forces sergeant, Christoforus da Silva. Interwoven with this extraordinarily detailed work are strands of a personal memoir.


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This updated version of her earlier book, Cover-Up, reconstructs these tragic events and interweaves Jolliffe's own investigations as a long-time reporter in East Timor. It's a grim story, painstakingly told. The truth maybe out but neither Jakarta nor Canberra show any will to bring the affair to a "dignified close".

J ill Jolliffe has been following the Balibo 5 story for more than three decades. She witnessed the first incursions of Indonesian regular troops into East Timor in September , reported on the death of her five colleagues at Balibo in October, and was evacuated from Dili by the International Red Cross four days before Indonesian paratroopers attacked the capital on 7 December She now lives in Darwin and reports regularly from East Timor.

The images and words adorning the walls of East Timor reflect the country's tumultuous history, precarious present and hopeful future.

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