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Next Destinations. Ultimate guide to being vegan in Warsaw. About author. It was only much later that we learned that the American embassy was supplying [Suharto with] names and ticking them off as they were killed. There was a deal, you see.
Travel to East Timor
That was the deal. A second holocaust in resource-rich East Timor, an undefended colony, was almost inevitable. In , I filmed clandestinely in occupied East Timor; I found a land of crosses and unforgettable grief. In my film, Death of a Nation , there is a sequence shot on board an Australian aircraft flying over the Timor Sea.
A party is in progress. Two men in suits are toasting each other in champagne. The other man is Ali Alatas, the principal mouthpiece of Suharto. In their own handwriting, senior officials of the Department of Foreign Affairs mock reports of the rape, torture and execution of East Timorese by Indonesian troops.
Or is the former a result of the latter? In , I interviewed C. We supplied them with everything they needed [from] M16 rifles [to] US military logistical support … maybe , people, almost all of them non-combatants died. I asked Liechty what would have happened had someone spoken out. The gang in the Australian embassy in Jakarta appear to suffer no such anguish. If I made a comment like that, being the cynical bugger that I am, it would certainly have been in the spirit of irony and sarcasm.
As one who reported and filmed the evidence of genocide, I find this last remark especially profane. This is an ideal place to get a good impression of the coastline of Dili. From the lighthouse, you can see the Cristo Rei, the great statue of Jesus, on top of one of the hills on the outskirts of the city. You look along the harbour, the presidential palace and in the distance, you can see the different beaches.
In clear weather, you can see Atauro Island. By now you must be hungry. We set course for lunch. Pay attention during the walk on the Avenida Portugal: you pass several embassies.
Take notice of the different architectural styles that the countries have used. We lunch at Agora Food Studio. Here, local young people are trained as full-fledged hospitality professionals and the best baristas. His employees are ambitious young people who come from poor rural areas. They work hard to learn as much as possible about managing a restaurant.
The boys and girls grew up with little perspective. Now they dream of opening their own cafes and restaurants. Here they serve only local dishes, made from ingredients grown by East Timorese farmers. After the Agora Food Studio, there is a minute walk to the Chega! Also for this walk: take the city of Dili really in. Walk into a shop now and then and have a chat with curious residents. Be sure to take a look inside the cathedral. This simple eatery serves delicious Bangladeshi dishes as well as Indian dosas and curries.
Although you are still full because of lunch, this is an excellent option to come back later! Cheap and very tasty. Lees meer: een ode aan het lekkerste gerecht van India: de dosa. The Chega! Exhibition has some overlap with the story you have read before in the Resistance Museum. Whereas earlier in the day you mainly read and heard stories, the exhibition in the former Portuguese prison is more visual. Especially because of the preserved prison cells that you can visit. Hundreds of Timorese were imprisoned and tortured here during the Indonesian occupation.
East Timor: not for rookies
In the cells, you can read the testimonies of survivors. Furthermore, in this museum personal stories are told of men, women and children who survived the war. Thousands of militia fighters, army commanders and civilians speak out and reveal the horrific details of the occupation in the five-volume book. If you like, you can view the books in the museum. For a few bucks, we take a taxi to Christo Rei.
The second largest Jezus Christ statue in the world after the famous Cristo Redentor in Brazil is too far away to walk. Have yourself dropped off at the parking lot. Climb the steps that lead to the meter high image of the Messiah. A special detail is that the statue was erected by the Indonesians in honour of the year rule. The height of the statue is no coincidence. It symbolized Timor-Leste as the 27th province of Indonesia.
A painful detail for the residents. At the spot where you get dropped the taxi, you will see many locals who have just put on their running gear and to exercise in evening sun up the mountain. Enjoy the fun of the many groups of sports enthusiasts that pass you on your left and right. So, walking through Dili has taken its toll. Time for a drink and relaxation.