The Truths of Torture: Victims' Memories and State Histories in Indonesia

TitleThe Truths of Torture: Victims' Memories and State Histories in Indonesia
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2008
AuthorsRoosa, J
JournalIndonesia
Pagination31-49
ISBN Number0019-7289
KeywordsArmed forces, Asian history, Political parties, Political persecution, Questioning, Torture
Abstract

For the Indonesian military, torture was a standard operating procedure when interrogating detainees. During the regime of Maj Gen Suharto, he ordered the mass killing of members of a political movement. The army-led assault on the Partai Komunis Indonesia (PKI) resulted in hundreds of thousands of people killed and hundreds more held without charge as political prisoners. To this end, Roosa argues that the Indonesian army, in attacking the PKI, began with a fantasy, tortured its prisoners during interrogations to make them confirm that fantasy, and then used the information derived from torture sessions as both actionable intelligence and evidence worthy of being cited in its published documents.