Monday, 2 February 2009

Balinese Leaders Leading by Example

If only Bush et al had done the same thing, from Adrian Vickers' A History of Modern Indonesia, p. 14:
Two expeditions were sent to conquer the rulers of South Bali. When one of the South Balinese kings let his subjects claim the contents of a ship wrecked on his shores, the Dutch argued that international shipping rights had not been protected and consequently launched an invasion in 1906. The justification for a second action in 1908 was that Bali had become a major centre of opium smuggling. In both cases the results were spectacular but appalling. Rather than surrender their independence, the Balinese kings, queens, princes, princesses and their followers armed themselves with swords and spears to face the Dutch forces. Dressed in ceremonial white, they marched into a barrage of Dutch bullets and cannons where death was bloody, brutal and certain. A total of over 1,300 of the ruling class and their servants died in these actions that the Balinese still speak about today.

No comments: