British radical left movements have existed since around the late 19th century, with the formation of various organisations following ideologies from the far-left’s revolutionary socialism, anarchism and syndicalism to the center-left’s socialism, liberal socialism, ethical socialism, social democratic, progressives and also some democratic socialists, greens and the Christian left.
I was very surprised to read Peter Hitchens’ article explaining from the lockdown to the destruction of statues, these febrile weeks show the pillars of our freedom and civilization are rotten. As the Left now controls every lever of power, we face nothing less than regime change. Despite many other important messages on his article, I would like to highlight a very important clue in the article about Oxford based West Papua separatist movement.
Peter Hitchens wrote:
As it happens, it was the death in Minneapolis, a city most British people will never even see, of George Floyd. Seeing the surging crowds, the rioting and the looting in the USA, the British radical Left grew jealous.
They imported the protest, converted it into outrage against some mouldering statues, and set the streets alight. Last week I attended one of these demonstrations, against the statue of Cecil Rhodes in Oxford. I have lived in Oxford for more than 50 years and I went out of interest, not because I care especially about this mediocre sculpture of a questionable man.
The event was utterly incoherent, moving from vague rage against the long-dead Rhodes to concerns about the oppression of West Papua to shouts against colonialism. As far as I know, China is the only major colonial power left. Peking is certainly raping Africa on a scale Cecil Rhodes never dreamed of.
But such people can’t quite bring themselves to attack that particular regime. Sometimes I think the radical Left are more nostalgic for the British Empire than any retired Indian Army colonel ever was.
I have been wondered how a criminal could have a special treatment in Oxford. Benny Wenda’s crime is still debatable whether or not he was the mastermind of the killing of two policemen an torching houses. The most important thing is that he led a crowd to attack a police station. Wenda escaped from a Papuan jail in 2002 while on trial for arson and murder after allegedly inciting a deadly attack on a police station in 2000, in which six officers and civilians died. Due to lack of strong policing and prison security system, Wenda ran away and left his hometown to avoid justice.
Thanks to Peter Hitchens, now I understand and hopefully all Papuan people will understand too. Hitchens’ illustration of incoherent event by British radical left who imported the protest from the USA, converted it into outrage against some mouldering statues, and set the streets alight is not only correct but also invite a big question why. In the context of British domestic politics, Hitchens answer is: “As the Left now controls every lever of power, we face nothing less than Regime Change.” In the context of West Papua issue, it seems that British radical left have helped Benny Wenda to manipulate the world by depicting colonialism in West Papua.
The Indonesian government strongly condemns the decision by the Oxford City Council (OCC) to grant the Oxford Freedom of the City Award to Benny Wenda on July 17, 2019. What is the response of British of British government? The Foreign and Commonwealth Office wishes to underline that the UK Government’s longstanding position on Papua has not changed. We support Indonesia’s territorial integrity and regard Papua as an integral part of Indonesia. Mr Wenda’s presence in the UK does not mean that the UK Government supports his position on Papuan sovereignty, and the award by Oxford City Council has no bearing on UK Government policy. Local councils are politically independent from central government and so this is a matter for Oxford City Council. Please read here for complete statement.
When I checked the composition of Oxford City Council, I understand why Hitchens hinted that the Left now controls every lever of power. The Mayor of Oxford who presented the award is from green Party (leftist), the majority of Oxford City Council were controlled by majority Labour Party councillors, followed by Liberal Democrats and Greens and to my surprise no conservative.
In my narrow conclusion, the support to Oxford based West Papua separatist movement is solely from British radical left. This conclusion is also supported by the existing campaign by Benny Wenda’s close Communist comrade and former Director of Free West Papua Campaign, Serogo Tabuni a.k.a Papua Militant International.
Indonesia should not worry too much with Oxford based West Papua separatist movement because even when the Labour Party in Power during the leadership of Gordon Brown, the British Government consistently support Indonesia’s territorial integrity and regard Papua as an integral part of Indonesia. What Indonesian should do to prevent further falsification of information by West Papua separatist propaganda is to continue the development of Papua and West Papua provinces democratically and respect human rights. Regarding the manipulations by Benny Wenda and his supporters, the answer is that honesty is always the best policy. At the end of the day, the world will know how hard Indonesian central government and Papuan local government in maintaining peace, building democracy, and improving the living standard of Papuan.