MEMORANDUM on the report of the Federalism for Peace Foundation
Dear compatriots in Maluku and in The Netherlands
- This report on the Moluccan case is a scientific document. It is therefore not a product of a Moluccan action group. A few researchers with extensive knowledge of the suffering that has been inflicted on us have made the United Nations know, as independently and objectively as possible, how serious mistakes in 1949-1959 have led to occupying, suppressing and exploiting us. In order to prevent the United Nations from thinking that this document would be a story of angry Moluccans, the researchers did not hold any substantive consultations with Moluccans. Not even with us, the signatories of this Memorandum.
- We all know that many publications have been devoted to what has happened to us. Now that after eight months we could download the report on 12 April and started to read it, we saw information that we have never found in other publications before. The report exposes how seriously the legal framework that should have guaranteed the Moluccas the inalienable right to self-determination has been tampered with. By means of a rigorous analysis, the report shows that the United Nations in particular, by the United Nations Committee for Indonesia (UNCI), has been guilty of serious neglect of its responsibility, which has enabled Sukarno to seize absolute power. The report also shows with which facts and arguments we as Moluccan people can demand that the United Nations can restore the suffering by forcing Indonesia to return the stolen sovereignty to us.
- We are not going to repeat the report here. Those who love the Moluccas should read the report for themselves. It is not always easy because it is a scientific report, but it is written in such a way that probably everyone understands what it says.
- Normally with such a report you must start at the beginning and only stop at the end. But not everyone wants to do that. That is why we recommend the following route:
a) Walk through the Table of Contents first. Then you'll see how the report works.
b) Then go straight to Chapter 15. That is a Requisitory as a prosecutor tells a judge what a suspect has done wrong. And what the claim is.
c) When you have read that Chapter, take Chapters 5, 6 and 7. That is the core of the analysis of what was done wrong and who was responsible for it.
d) Then you can start at the beginning and then quietly read through the report to the end.
- Very briefly, the researchers explain that in 1949 huge legal tampering took place under the responsibility of the UNCI, that a) Soekarno was able to take advantage of this in 1950, b) that the Netherlands protests against this was frustrated by the UNCI, so that the Netherlands finally threw in the towel in order not to damage the economic interests of the Netherlands-Indonesian Union, c) that the UNCI then maneuvered in such a way that Indonesia was allowed to become a member of the UN after only one month. That is the crux of the matter. And the deepest cause is the completely wrong federal constitution, which nobody paid attention to in 1949. Nor in the dozens of publications on the Moluccan case. If you read Chapter 6 carefully, you will be amazed when you see how the UNCI could have made such a mess of it.
- If you know this, you understand that the report is not about the role of the Netherlands. It is not about Dutch misconduct, even though it is mentioned regularly in the report. It's about a subject that, in our opinion, has never been discussed in all publications on the Moluccan case, namely legal tampering, political manipulation, looking away by responsible bodies. The message is: 'Serious culpable and avoidable mistakes have been made in the past and these can and must be rectified. The responsibility for this lies entirely with the UN'.
- It cannot be ruled out that the report on 25 April will lead to some commotion on the Moluccas. Whether that is wise depends on what the emphasis will be on. If there are riots towards Indonesia, this does not serve our cause. With the well-known mantra of 'they are extremist separatists' Indonesia can get rid of it. Manifestations of unrest and turmoil in the Moluccas should be dominated by a square stand behind the report. So, they should be aimed at the United Nations and not at Indonesia. The UN was completely wrong in 1949-1950. Indonesia seized that opportunity. Think of the proverb: the opportunity makes the thief. Sukarno stole our sovereignty because the UNCI made this possible.
- The best thing would be for a Commission of Wise Men to rise in the Moluccas before April 25th. Partly to calm our people, partly to call on them to support the report and to support the Federalism for Peace Foundation in concluding that what the UN did wrong at the time, can and must be remedied by the UN itself. So - using the UN Charter - forcing Indonesia - willing or unwilling - to give back sovereignty to the Moluccas, so that we can decide for ourselves what we want: a unitary Moluccan state or a federal state with others. The advice of the researchers is: choose a federal state with partners in Oceania because that is the future. Unitary nation-states are going to disappear.
- Of course, there are people who doubt that after 70 years of oppression in the Moluccas, we can put together a Commission of Wise Men. Our reaction is: if there are people in the Moluccas who can organize resistance, then there are also people who can realize cohesion and connectedness. If we ourselves are not able to act in unity as a people and stand together behind this report - perhaps our last chance for self-determination - then perhaps we are not worth it either.
- Due to differences of opinion, various groups have emerged in the past 70 years, all trying in their own way to serve the interests of Moluccas. We call on them: bury the hatchet and issue a joint declaration that the Moluccan people support this report and require the UN to do its job, as promised in the United Nations treaties, including the inalienable right to self-determination. Let us, as one people, support this appeal.
- We Moluccans are fighters, we are activists. But we would do well to abandon that attitude now. Let us, as one people, stand behind this report and spread its message.
- We don't know what the outcome of this process will be. We have high hopes, because the report puts a lot of emphasis on two quotes from UN Secretaries-General. With the message: put your action where your mouth is. Prove that as a UN you have a right to exist when you attach such weighty quotes to your extensive edifice of treaties and preambles and articles that promise that justice will be done to peoples like ours.
- Because it is a political battle and the Foundation only provides the legal means to fight it, it is up to the Moluccas to come up with our own political means. In addition to the legal instruments. So, our task is well-organized - knowledge-based - long-term political, non-violent action.
- The question of what will happen after we have regained our sovereignty, such as reparations, etc., is not going to be answered yet, which leads to unnecessary tension that does not do the matter any good.
- Thanking Leo Klinkers (President Federalism for Peace Foundation) for helping us designing this Memorandum:
T.A. Soumokil (Son of Dr. C.R.S. Soumokil)
Njonja J. Soumokil (Widow of Dr. C.R.S. Soumokil)
15 April 2020