Free West Papua! A video introduction to a struggle for self-determination
Act of Free Choice (directed by Mark Worth)
The so-called ``Act of Free Choice'' was a sham referendum held in 1969 to decide whether Indonesia should govern West Papua. The small sample of indigenous West Papuans selected to vote were threatened with physical voilence if they voted against the Indonesian regime. Of course, they ``voted'' to remain part of Indonesia.
To this day, on the basis of this UN-sanctioned farce, Indonesia holds West Papua. This short film by the late Mark Worth (1958-2004) was a precursor to his outstanding documentary Land of the Morning Star and succinctly outlines the political history of West Papua. Act of Free Choice is the title of David Bridie's debut solo album and although the song "Act of Free Choice" was played live at Bridie's shows, it was omitted from the album for "textural" reasons (in other words, it didn't fit with the other tracks). It later appeared on the five-track Act of Free Choice EP.
For latest developments (and more background) in the struggle for a free West Papua, visit the Australia West Papua Association website at http://www.zulenet.com/awpa/ and Action in Solidarity with Asia and the Pacific at http://www.asia-pacific-action.org/. See also Green Left Weekly's West Papua archive.