LATEST NEWS (IN DUTCH): In deze jungle vinden honderden onopgemerkte executies van Papoea's plaats
(In this jungle find hundreds of unnoticed executions of Papuans place)
Links, facts and figueres about now 50 years Papua-surpression and torturing by the Indonesians
In March 1961 I was eligible for military service in the Dutch armee which was 18 months.
As I wasn't very fond to serve this time in an "organized" life in the Dutch barracks I jumped at the chance to go as a volunteer to Suriname
or to previous Netherlands New Guinea
. I choose Dutch New Guinea
because of my instinctive ties with the (old!) Indonesian people.
After a short common military training in Ossendrecht
I had to serve as a soldier the 7nd Department Light Anti Aircraft Artillery
and more specific as a radio-telephonist.
Just after a course of a couple of days in the "Dutch Institute for preventive tropical medical science" in Neerrijnen, which was by the way very useful because we were warned not to carry a naked lady on our neck as she could infect us with a venereal disease in the neck and not to use toilet-paper for cleaning the bump after the bowel movement but using water (and your hands) to rinse, I took off.
I was very lucky as the first batches went luxury by plane as civilians, to avoid embarrassing the (neutral (???)) countries: all the personal military outfit went in the baggage-compartments in the kit-bags, even your personal belongings in your pockets were searched by the Dutch military authorities just before take off as a King. As a King? Yes, because that time the (flying) passenger was treated unforgettable. After, in my case, a flight with a KLM-DC-8
over the North-pole with a stop at Kevlavik
(Alaska) where we were welcomed by a big stuffed polar-bear, passing the North-pole
to Tokyo we landed at Biak. Very lucky, because some badges after us started being shipped by the "Zuiderkruis"
, a replenishment ship.
In the beginning of 1962 we got a service-increase of three months due to the expending tensions with Eastern-Germany (in New Guinea ???).
In Biak we slept first in the Navy-barracks
in decent dormitories and later at the military air-strip Boroekoe in a "nissen-hut"
(a prefabricated steel structure made from a half-cylindrical skin of corrugated steel designed during World War I, a variant of which (the Quonset hut) was used extensively during World War II.), sleeping at a "tampatje", a military camp-bed. We put the legs of the bed into a round cigarette-tin filled with petrol to avoid that certain insects could creep-up and join you.No airco of course and no ventilator(s).
Some months later I got a job at Kaimana-strip and was shipped at 26-7-1962 by the Fregat Hr.Ms. Evertsen F 803
which took one day and one night and we were exposed to wind-force 9. 26-7-1962 we passed Sorong, served in Kaimana
until we were dismissed in August due to the American "diplomacy" pushed by the Kennedy's
, the so called "plan Bunker"
I went back to Biak by a Dakota DC-3
, where-after by a DC-7
(cruise speed 578 km/h.......) to Bangkok
with a stop of four hours, than flying at XD-7 hight (8,656 m.) over the desserts looking at the long oil-pipes, after a stop in Beirut, approaching low over the sea
, back to Amsterdam - Schiphol Oost
Now, until today, fifty years later, the Papua-population is suffering under Indonesian suppression and torturing
It was a nice time in which I only suffered two weeks of scrub-typhus
and the first weeks sun-burning due to carelessness during my snorkel-trips
in the beautiful sea with a fantastic clearness: it seemed one was swimming in a hugh aquarium, full of fish with the coral reefs below. Besides of this our time-off was used to go around by a Jeep or a DAF YA 126 "WEP"
on which trips we also were confronted with the remains of the horrors of the Pacific War against the Japanese war-criminals
only some fifteen years before.
Not to mention that one, after such a time, has left his regular life far behind. At the 7th of November 2013 all original content of the album DUTCH HISTORY, KLM, DUTCH (WEST) NEW GUINEA IN SCANS OF OLD NEGATIVES AND COLOR-SLIDES > Dutch (West) New Guinea (1949-1962)
has been sent to the Netherlands where they shall be stocked in the Netherlands Institute of Military History (Ned. Instituut voor Militaire Historie (NIMH)
© Antoni Uni, el primero UniCo de l'Escala 2017