From: Paulo Alexandre Correia Pombal <pacp_at_...>
Date: Mon, 29 Sep 1997 10:06:19 +0100 (WET DST)

On Sat, 27 Sep 1997, Alan E & Carmel J Brain wrote:

> Sauron Moridor wrote:
> >
> > Sauron1 writes; Alan; East Timor Genocide? What is the Portuguese
> > connection, was it a colony?
> Correct. I'll try to give a potted explanation, and please bear in mind
> I'm as subject to Prejudice as anyone else - a disintrested observer may
> see things quite differently.
> When Portugal threw off the Salazar dictatorship in the 70s, it adopted
> a Socialist government. Not "Socialist" as in the USA's view of a
> European or Canadian Labour Party, but Socialist as in "Democratic
> People's Republic"-type. All of its colonies in Africa went hard-line
> Marxist, ie Angola and Mozambique. East Timor was going down the same
> road - maybe. Probably, even.

I, as a Portuguese, must disagree. We do not became a "Democratic People's
Republic" as you said (although there was quite an huge Red feeling in the
country - as most politicians were fighters of the Salazar dictatorship.
What really happened, was that, under the strain of an endless colonial
war - kind of a Portuguese Vietnam multiplied by three: Angola, Mocambique
and Guine - people wanted their sons back as soon as possible. With the
independence, the ex-colonies turned Communist or Socialist, because the
strongest guerrilla movements were of that political nature.

> Portugal was never able to sign such a treaty, and is now lobbying the
> UN hard to try to get a piece of the pie (oh yes, and a token effort to
> protect their former citizens too, those that are left).

Yes, Portuguese politicians, like all the others around the world, have
great concern for the poor and suffering - in case you didn't notice this
is a sarcastic remark with a genuine concern for the people of Timor, not
the DAMN oil beneath them.

Paulo Pombal
Received on Thu Jan 01 1970 - 00:00:00 UTC

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