This important study introduces the history and people of West Papua, tracing the origins of the international conflict surrounding their struggle for self-determination following the Second World War. Based on three decades of exhaustive research and focusing particular attention on the sham referendum of 1969 – which Indonesia dubbed “The Act of Free Choice’, an election rigged to legitimize Indonesian control over West Papua – Drooglever highlights the continuing impact of this injustice.
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The United Nations and the Indonesian Takeover of West Papua
(John Saltford, 2002)
Definitive text on the ‘Act of Free Choice’ and the takeover of West Papua.
PDF available here
West Papua: The Obliteration of a People
(Carmel Budiardjo and Liem Soei Liong, Tapol, 1988)
Well researched book detailing the genocide of the Papuan people.
Available from Tapol
(George Monbiot, 1989/2003)
An investigative journey through the forbidden lands of West Papua. At great personal risk and with forged travel documents, George Monbiot bluffed, cheated and forced his way into West Papua. Originally published in the 80s, it was republished in 2003 with a new introduction by the author.
The Open Cage : Ordeal of the Irian Jaya Hostages
(Daniel Start, 1997)
The author’s account of being taken hostage by the OPM in 1995.
Freedom In Entangled Worlds
(Eben Kirksey, 2012)
Eben Kirksey first went to West Papua in 1998 as an exchange student. His later study of West Papua’s resistance to the Indonesian occupiers and the forces of globalization morphed as he discovered that collaboration, rather than resistance, was the primary strategy of this dynamic social movement. Accompanying indigenous activists to Washington, London, and the offices of the oil giant BP, Kirksey saw the revolutionaries’ knack for getting inside institutions of power and building coalitions with unlikely allies, including many Indonesians.
Blending extensive ethnographic research with indigenous parables, historical accounts, and compelling narratives of his own experiences, he argues that seeking freedom in entangled worlds requires negotiating complex interdependencies.