Imagine what would happen if Spain declared Franco a “national hero”… And I don’t think he actually killed half a million Communists…
By the time his 31-year rule finally came to an end amid riots and demonstrations in 1998, Suharto had become one of the most reviled dictators of the late 20th century. He was charged with the murder of half a million suspected Communists in the 1960s after he put down a coup against his predecessor, Sukarno (a restoration of order that also led swiftly to the-then Major-General’s ascent to power). He stood accused of genocide in East Timor, more than one-quarter of whose population perished after his 1975 invasion and subsequent occupation of the former Portuguese colony. Free speech and democracy in Indonesia were crushed, with dissidents jailed or summarily shot. As if that were not ignominy enough, he also had the distinction of being branded the most corrupt world leader of all time by the NGO Transparency International, which estimated he looted up to $35bn from the state coffers.
On his death, it may have been said “he will never be forgotten“, but one would have thought most Indonesians would fervently wish the opposite. However, in a move that has caused consternation to human rights activists and heated debate in the country’s media, the Indonesian government is now proposing that the former dictator be formally declared a “national hero”.
Will Obama tell him something in his coming trip to the country?
NOTE: just in case a moron is reading this. I’m in no way a Franco’s supporter. But I really hate double standards… 👿