“Indonesia Menggugat” —- “Indonesia Accuses”

I was recently reminded that Soekarno’s birthday is in June, and then remembered a visit to the former Dutch Landraad courthouse in Bandung.

The Landraad Courthouse Bandung

The Landraad Courthouse Bandung

It was here in 1930 that Soekarno gave his famous speech against colonialism, ‘Indonesia Menggugat’ or ‘Indonesia Accuses’ in the Dutch courtroom, before being sentenced to four years in prison.

Soekarno, his three co-accused and their lawyers

Soekarno, his three co-accused and their lawyers

The building has since been restored as a museum dedicated to the memory of Soekarno and the three other leaders who were sentenced with him. In a beautiful touch of irony the restored building was officially opened by his daughter President Megawati Soekarno in 2002.

The Memorial Plaque

The Memorial Plaque

I was struck by the significance of a poster displayed in the building, of President Soekarno telling the nation:
“My struggle was easier because it was to expel the colonialists, but yours will be more difficult because it is against your own people.”

Indonesia Accuses 4

I was even more struck by another poster on display quoting the same words by Soekarno.

Indonesia Accuses 5



About ianburnet

Author of the book, Spice Islands. Which tells the History, Romance and Adventure of the spice trade from the Moluccas in Eastern Indonesia over a period of 2000 years. Author of the book, East Indies.Which tells the history of the struggle between the Portuguese Crown, the Dutch East India Company and the English East India Company for supremacy in the Eastern Seas. Author of the book 'Archipelago - A Journey Across Indonesia'. Author of the book 'Where Australia Collides with Asia' Author of the book 'The Tasman Map'. Author of the book 'Eastern Voyages'.
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1 Response to “Indonesia Menggugat” —- “Indonesia Accuses”

  1. Good observation. Indeed an objective analysis today will show that Indonesia is its own worst enemy. This Tanahair has so much resources and potential, it should have been a BRIC country, but it’s lagging behind the BRICs. I say with this with sympathy and sadness as I’m half-Indonesian. 😦

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