Battle for Timor

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Battle for Timor
Australian coastal gun near Kalapa Lima / West Timor
Australian coastal gun near Kalapa Lima / West Timor
date 19th / 20th February 1942 to 10. February 1943
place Timor
output Withdrawal of the Allies, but excessive commitment of Japanese military forces
Parties to the conflict

AustraliaAustralia Australia Netherlands Timorese and Portuguese partisans ( Criados )

Japanese EmpireJapanese Empire Japanese empire
Timorese irregulars ( Colunas Negras )


William Leggatt ;
William Veale ;
Alexander Spence ;
Bernard Callinan

Takeo Ito (invasion of West Timor);
Sadashichi Doi (invasion of East Timor until August 1942);
Kouichi Yasube (from August 1942);
Yuichi Tsuchihashi (from December 1942)

Troop strength
about 2,050 (February 1942); about 1,000 (October 1942) about 12,000 (late 1942 to early 1943)

Netherlands: around 300 dead;
Australia: 151 Sparrow Force dead ;
Great Britain: 5 dead

about 2,000 dead

Portuguese Timorese population:
40,000–70,000 civilians dead

The Battle of Timor (Engl. Battle of Timor ) took place in the Pacific War from 1942 to 1943 during World War II instead. On the Southeast Asian island of Timor , the Allies , mainly Australian and Dutch troops, fought the Japanese invaders in hunting combat . Many locals and Portuguese colonists supported the Allies, provided them with food or offered them shelter. Other Timorese supported the Japanese in the hope of shaking off the colonial rule of the Europeans.

Allied troops were supplied by planes and boats that were stationed in Darwin , 650 kilometers across the Timor Sea. The fighting tied an entire Japanese division to Timor for more than six months. The commando actions of the Allies were terminated on 10 February 1943 was evacuated as the last Australian soldier from Timor. The Timorese continued the resistance. Tens of thousands of Timorese fell victim to retaliation by the Japanese.


Situation in Southeast Asia 1941–1942

West Timor was part of the Dutch East Indies in 1941 , while the East formed the colony of Portuguese Timor . Portugal had declared itself neutral during World War II. Accordingly, Japan initially did not include Portuguese Timor in its strategy, even though several Japanese agents were active in the colony. Tokyo profited from strategic information it received from Lisbon through diplomatic channels . Accordingly, Japan's Prime Minister Hideki Tojo did not want a break in relations. In addition, Japan's ally Germany was dependent on material deliveries from Portugal, which is why it instructed Tokyo not to cause any complications here. Dutch Timor , on the other hand, was a clear target of Japanese expansion.

In December 1941, the Netherlands asked for Australian troops to be sent to Kupang , the capital of the Dutch western part of the island, and the island of Ambon , in accordance with the agreements made in Singapore that year . These agreements have been named Plenaps for "plan for the employment of naval and air forces of the associated powers in the eastern theater in the event of war with Japan" ( German  plans for deployment of naval and air forces of the allied forces on the eastern theater of war in the event a war with Japan ). As early as November 1941, troops, including some US naval units, had been marched due to plenaps. On December 10, an Australian unit with 1,402 men, which was named " Sparrow Force ", left the port of Darwin on board the SS Zealandia and the auxiliary cruiser HMAS Westralia in the direction of Kupang, where it arrived on December 12. Only at short notice was the decision taken to send troops to Ambon as well. The 1090 men of the "Gull Force" ( German  seagull armed forces ) left Darwin on December 14th on three Dutch freighters.

The beach at Usapa Besar. The Australian Sparrow Force landed here on December 12, 1941.

The unit consisting of the 2 / 40th Battalion of the Australian 8th Division (from Tasmania ) and the 2nd Australian Army Independent Company (later the 2/2 Commando Squadron ) ( Western Australia ) was commanded by Lieutenant Colonel William Leggatt . The Sparrow Force was joined by 650 men from the Royal Dutch-Indian Army ( Koninklijk Nederlandsch-Indisch Leger KNIL ) under Lt. Col. Nico van Straten including the Timor and Dependency Garrison Battalion , a company of the 8th Infantry Battalion, a reserve infantry company, a machine gun platoon of the XIII. Infantry battalions and an artillery battery. The land forces were supported by 12 Lockheed Hudson light bombers of No. 2 Squadron of the Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF) and a 189-strong contingent of the British 79th Light Anti-Aircraft Battery of the Royal Artillery , which had already fought in the Battle of Britain . Allied troops were stationed around the strategically important airfield of Penfui . It served as the central link between Australia and the American forces fighting in the Philippines under General Douglas MacArthur . Some units were also stationed in Klapalima , Usapa Besar , Babau . The Sparrow Force supply base was further east in Champlong .

Allied invasion of Portuguese Timor

Up until this point, Portugal had refused to cooperate with the Allies and instead planned to bring 800 of its soldiers from Mozambique to Portuguese Timor to protect the colony against a possible Japanese invasion. The Allies saw their flank endangered. The Portuguese colony could be used as a base for attacks on Darwin, 600 kilometers away. In Dili , the capital of Portuguese Timor, Australia had already sent David Ross as Qantas representative in December 1940 , and in 1941 he also became the British Honorary Consul. His main task, however, was to clear up Japanese activities in the Portuguese colony. Japan was already heavily involved in the East Timorese economy at this time and opened a consulate in Dili in 1941. Ross, along with Naval Intelligence Agent Lieutenant Whittaker, quickly achieved success in his work. Within a few days they established a secret channel for daily radio messages to Darwin. Ross discovered a secret Japanese airfield, Japanese submarine activity, and a secret weapons cache on the Japanese seaplane tender Nanyei Maru . The European population sorted Ross according to supporters and opponents of the Axis powers . Other Australian agents and the Dutch journalist Stuinnrs, who worked as an agent, also warned clearly that Portuguese Timor had to be dealt with. In September 1941, the Australian Cabinet declared that a Japanese invasion of Portuguese Timor was possible and called on Britain to prepare plans for an Australian-Dutch "preventive invasion" of the Portuguese colony. On December 11th and 12th, British Secretary of State for Dominion Affairs Robert Gascoyne-Cecil sent two secret telegrams to Australia's Prime Minister John Curtin . In these too, a preventive measure was proposed in Portuguese Timor. Gascoyne-Cecil presented it as if Portugal had already agreed to it. The Australian government then decided to send allied forces to Portuguese Timor.

The Dutch coastal armored ship Soerabaia

On December 15, the old Dutch coastal armored ship Soerabaia Kupang left with 200 Dutch and 200 Australian soldiers. It reached Dili on December 17th. Officers went ashore as negotiators and asked Manuel de Abreu Ferreira de Carvalho , the governor of Portuguese Timor, for permission to land the troops. Carvalho protested, trying to buy time to wait for instructions from his government over the telegraph. At noon the Allies lost patience. The Soerabaia anchored off the coast of Dili, the troops were brought ashore and the 28 cm guns were made ready for use. The 500 soldiers of the Portuguese army did not offer any resistance against the Australians and Dutch. Japanese nationals were arrested and Carvalho declared himself a prisoner in order to maintain the appearance of neutrality, while Portugal's dictator António de Oliveira Salazar protested the occupation to the Allied governments. However, local authorities secretly cooperated with the occupiers. In January 1942, most of the Dutch troops under van Straten and the entire 2nd Independent Company under Major A. Spence were relocated to Portuguese Timor. There they were distributed over the territory in smaller units. In January 1942 the troops on Timor formed a key position in the so-called Malay Barrier under the American-British-Dutch-Australian Command under General Archibald Wavell . More Australian support units reached Kupang on February 12th. Present was Brigadier William Veale , the commanding officer (CO), the allied troops in Timor. At the time, many members of the Sparrow Force were suffering from tropical conditions and diseases such as malaria .

In Japan, at the beginning of January 1942, they learned about the Allied troop stationing in what was actually a neutral colony. This and the imprisonment of the Japanese population provided the empire with the pretext for intervention. On January 5, the Southern Expeditionary Army presented its plans to attack Dutch Timor and reported to the government of the Australian-Dutch invasion of Portuguese Timor. Therefore an attack on Dili was urged. The decision was delayed because Hajime Sugiyama , the chief of the general staff, and Foreign Minister Shigenori Togo argued over the issue. Sugiyama wanted the conquest of Portuguese Timor, Togo pressed for the neutrality of Portugal to be respected.

The first attacks by Japanese planes on Penfui took place on January 26th and 30th . In addition to the British flak, eleven Curtiss P-40s of the 33rd Pursuit Squadron of the United States Army Air Forces were deployed from Darwin against the attackers. With regard to Portuguese Timor, the Japanese government finally followed the army's assessment and approved the attack on Dili. Prime Minister Tojo and Osami Nagano , chief of the Japanese naval general staff, were still arguing whether the Japanese troops should withdraw from the Portuguese colony after the destruction of the Allied units in Dili or keep it occupied. Eventually it was decided that the Japanese armed forces would remain until Portugal could protect its territory by reinforcing its own troops. The decision was forwarded to the Southern Expeditionary Army on February 8th. On the same day, Dili was attacked by Japanese bombers for the first time.

The USS Houston was deployed off Timor a few weeks before it was sunk.

After the Lark Force ( German  lark armed forces ) had been destroyed by the Japanese on January 23, 1942 in Rabaul ( New Britain ) and the Gull Force on Ambon on February 3, the Sparrow Force was reinforced on February 16 with 189 British Anti-aircraft man of the A&C Troops of the 79th Light Anti-Aircraft Battery (Royal Artillery). Most of them were veterans of the Battle of Britain . The day before, another Allied convoy of ships had left Darwin for Kupang. The association consisted of vans Meigs , Mauna Loa and Portmar the US Army and the Australian freighter Tulagi and was of the warships USS Houston , USS Peary , HMAS Swan and HMAS Warrego escorted. On board were, among others, the Australian Engineer Battalion 2/4 and the 1st Battalion of the 148th Artillery Regiment of the US Army. The convoy was sighted and shadowed by a Japanese Kawanishi H6K flying boat that same day before it was set on fire and forced to ditch by the hunting protection ordered by Captain Albert Rooks of Houston (a Curtiss P-40 of the 21st Pursuit Squadron) was. The American fighter was also hit in this aerial battle and fell on fire into the sea, killing the pilot, Lieutenant Robert J. Buel. The next day, 35 twin-engine Mitsubishi G3M bombers and 10 Kawanishi H6K flying boats of the 21st Air Flotilla attacked the Allied ships. Although the Japanese fighter planes did not score any direct hits, close hits resulted in leaks in all 4 transports (and there were 3 losses on the Mauna Loa ), which prompted Captain Rooks to cancel the mission and return to Darwin. There was no further reinforcement for the Sparrow Force, and Timor was the next logical target for the Japanese expansion into the Dutch East Indies.

The Japanese attack

Dutch Timor

Course of the fighting in February 1942 in the area of ​​Kupang

In West Timor, Major General Takeo Ito led the Japanese attack that same night. The Allied troops came under heavy air strikes here, which forced the RAAF to retreat to Australia. The bombing was followed by the landing of the main power of the 228th regiment with two battalions and 4,000 men in the unsecured southwest of the island, on the Paha river , near the village of Batulesa (today Desa Sumlili , West Kupang ). Informed of this, the Allies then destroyed the Penfui airfield. The historic Concordia fortress was given up without a fight. Type 94 light tanks supported the Japanese infantry on their way north, where they cut off the Dutch positions to the west and attacked the 2 / 40th Battalion in Penfui. Lt. Col. Legatt ordered the demolition of the airfield and the immediate relocation of Sparrow Force Headquarters east towards Champlong, but an advance northeast by 500 Japanese paratroopers from the 3rd Yokosuka Marine Special Landing Force , a paratrooper unit of the Marine infantry , stopped the Allies Retreat at Usua  - 22 km east of Kupang - on.

After prolonged resistance around the village of Babau and the landing of another 300 paratroopers, the Sparrow Force abandoned the village on the night of February 21 and planned to withdraw to the east in the morning. During this time the Japanese had established defensive positions with mountain howitzers and heavy machine guns in the hills of Usua. After being shot at with mortars and machine guns, the Australians attacked the Japanese positions directly. In direct close combat with bayonets , all but 78 of the 850 Japanese paratroopers were killed. The Sparrow Force lost only a few dozen men.

The Sparrow Force was then attacked by the Japanese main force with 3,000 men, tanks and artillery. By destroying the bridges, the Australians could only get a short respite on their retreat to the east. On February 23, the Sparrow Force again had enemy contact with the Japanese main force. Both sides were caught in two bombing raids by Japanese planes, killing both Australians and Japanese. Due to a lack of ammunition, a lack of water and food supplies and overtired men, Leggatt was forced to surrender to Irekum on the same day. More Japanese troops eventually landed at Kupang, so that their number in West Timor grew to 22,000.

The 2 / 40th Battalion reported 84 dead and 132 wounded. Twice as many of them were supposed to perish in captivity by the end of the war. Veale and Sparrow Force Headquarters were in Tjamplong with 290 Australian and Dutch soldiers at the time of the surrender and were moving east to join the 2nd Independent Company.

A month after the Japanese invasion, West Timor was completely under Japanese control and, apart from dispersed Allied soldiers who were happy to surrender, a peaceful place from a Japanese perspective.

Portuguese Timor

On the night of February 19-20, 1,500 men of the 228th Infantry Regiment of the Imperial Japanese Army ( 38th Division of the 16th Army , Southern Expeditionary Army ) began landing on Timor under the command of Colonel Sadashichi Doi . First Japanese ships appeared in front of Dili. The Allies mistakenly thought these ships were the expected Portuguese reinforcement, so that they were completely surprised by the attack. Nevertheless, the garrison was able to withdraw in an orderly manner. Command No. 2 Section of 18 Australian soldiers killed around 200 Japanese at Dilis airfield in the first hours of the battle. The Japanese army said the number of victims was seven. Local population figures support the Australian figures. The Fukumi Butai Corps is accused of killing 16 Australian soldiers from No. 7 Section on the day the Japanese landed in Dili. After the Australians were captured at a Japanese roadblock, four were shot immediately and the other twelve were executed with swords. One soldier survived the bayonet stabs that were supposed to kill him.

The Australians withdrew south into the mountains, and about 200 Dutch soldiers moved south-west under van Straten towards the border.

Governor Carvalho reported on the day of the invasion that Japanese troops occupied the government buildings and robbed them, as well as local Timorese, government facilities, wealthy citizens and Chinese shops. According to Carvalho's observations, some Chinese shops were spared. The owners had written Chinese characters in chalk on their doors. Carvalho called the event a "real hell".

The commando actions

Australian guerrillas in a camp in the Timor jungle

Between the surrender in Irekum and April 19, 1942, the Sparrow Force's connection with Australia was broken. At the end of February, Japan controlled most of West Timor and the area around Dili in the northeast. The south and the east remained a dangerous area for the Japanese, as the 2nd Independent Company had started to carry out attacks on the Japanese in the mountains of Portuguese Timor. The Australians were supported by Timorese guides, porters and fighters called criados (creados) . Most of the Criados boys were around 13 years old, who were eyes and ears for the Australians and were also important in obtaining food. Timorese mountain ponies were used as pack animals. There were no heavy weapons or vehicles. Although Portuguese officials remained officially neutral and initially remained in office for the civil administration, their sympathy was with the Allies. This enabled them to use the local telephone network to communicate and collect information about Japanese movements. Initially, the Australian troops lacked working radios and could not inform Australia of their continued resistance.

Entire Timorese tribes and clans were trained and armed by the Australians to fight the Japanese. About a hundred Portuguese and Timorese evacuated to Australia worked for the Services Reconnaissance Department . They received military training, some of them were given Australian uniforms and weapons and returned to Timor for action under Australian orders. 14 Timorese even received paratrooper training for the operations, making them the first Portuguese paratroopers ever.

The lack of contact and the resulting lack of supplies led to financial difficulties for the Australian commandos. So the Criados could not be paid any wages and locals were blackmailed to get supplies. Portuguese collaborating with the Australians robbed state properties, such as the radio station, to get spare parts for the Allied radios. Some Chinese Timorese fell victim to the allies and their allies because they were mistaken for Japanese.

Australian propaganda poster

The Japanese commander Doi sent Honorary Consul David Ross, who had been captured in the invasion, to the mountains at the end of March to persuade the commandos to give up. Spence's answer was clear: “ Surrender? Surrender be fucked! “Ross took the opportunity to give the commandos information about the formation of the Japanese armed forces and also handed over a charter in Portuguese promising reimbursement from the Australian government to those who supported the Allies.

Between March and April 1942 the fighting increased. Timorese cities were targeted by Allied air strikes and fighting in the mountains of Ermera and Bobonaro intensified. In early March, Veale and van Straten and their troops united with the 2nd Independent Company. By recycling some components, a radio was built and communication with Darwin established. The Australians nicknamed the radio " Winnie the War Winner ". Despite their numerical superiority, the Japanese did not succeed in defeating the Australians in the highlands, who could fall back on local leaders. The Australians, in turn, were able to effectively confuse and attack the Japanese, thanks in part to attacks by Portuguese and Timorese residents. At the end of March, Allied incursions and ambushes even reached Dili due to Japanese troop rotation. In addition, there were disabilities due to the rivalry between the Japanese army and the Japanese navy . Accordingly, the Japanese losses were high. From May onwards, Australian planes dropped supplies for the commandos and their allies.

On May 14, 1942, a group of 13 Australian soldiers attacked the Japanese headquarters in Dili and escaped again without loss. The Japanese pursued the attackers in the mountains south of Dili. The " Tiger of Singapore ", a Japanese major whose real name is unknown, took over the leadership of the hundred or so men . He was a respected veteran of the Malay campaign and the Battle of Singapore . On May 22nd, the "tiger" on a white horse led the Japanese unit to Remexio , ten kilometers southeast of Dili. There they were ambushed by an Australian patrol and their Portuguese and Timorese helpers. Along with about 30 other Japanese soldiers, the "Tiger" was also killed by an Australian sniper. The gray horse and the medals of the Japanese had made him an attractive target. The Japanese unit had to withdraw to Dili.

On May 24th, Veale and van Straten were flown out to the south-east coast in an RAAF Catalina . Spence was promoted to Lieutenant Colonel and appointed the new Commander in Chief of all Allied Forces in Timor. On May 27, the Royal Australian Navy landing craft HMAS Kuru carried out a first supply mission from Darwin to Betano in East Timor . Small ships and corvettes now drove this route again and again to supply the Allies. The Kuru alone drove to Betano nine times by December 1, 1942.

In June General Douglas MacArthur , the Allied Commander in Chief in the Southwest Pacific, received a report from his Australian colleague General Thomas Blamey . In it he emphasized that an Allied offensive on Timor would require a large amphibious landing operation with at least one complete infantry division (around 15,000 men). However, the troops required for this were tied to the reconquest of New Guinea and the upcoming Solomon Islands operations . Therefore, Blamey decided to continue the command actions on Timor in the previous framework, although MacArthur always questioned their sense.

Japanese commander Doi sent David Ross back to the Sparrow Force in June to persuade them to give up. Doi drew comparisons with the performance of the African commandos in the Second Boer War and concluded that the Allies needed ten times as many men to win. Doi announced that he was expecting reinforcements and that he would set up additional units if necessary. This time Ross did not return to Dili, but was posted to Australia on July 16.

The Japanese offensive

Portuguese Timor 1942/43

In August 1942, Japanese forces began bombing and burning Timorese villages suspected of supporting the Allies. A large number of civilian casualties were the result. On August 18, Colonel Doi was transferred to Sumatra with the Eastern Division . For this, the 47th Regiment under Major General Kouichi Yasube came to Timor and in December the entire 48th Division under Lieutenant General Yuichi Tsuchihashi , who now led the operations on the island. Strong Japanese forces advanced south, two from Dili and one from Manatuto . Another unit attacked Dutch positions in the southern center of the island from West Timor. The offensive ended on August 19th. The Japanese had now brought the mountain village of Maubisse in central Timor and the southern port of Beco under their control.

Australian soldiers burn the Timorese village of Mindelo down to prevent it from being used as a Japanese base. (Nov./Dec. 1942)

In September 1942 the main forces of the Japanese 48th Division arrived and assumed the leading role in Timor. Australia also wanted to refresh its troops. On September 23, 1942, the 2nd Independent Company was to be replaced by the 2 / 4th Independent Company ( Lancer Force ). The destroyer HMAS Voyager brought 450 soldiers to Betano and should take 600 men. Due to strong currents, however , the Voyager ran aground on the beach. Recovery was impossible. After a Japanese plane was shot down and bombers attacked the next day, the crew of the Voyager were brought aboard the corvettes HMAS Kalgoorlie and HMAS Warrnambool the following night . The Voyager was blown up. Their remains are still with Betano today. An advance by the Japanese from Dili reached Betano on September 27, but could no longer achieve anything.

In November the filmmaker Damien Parer and the war correspondent Bill Marien shot the film Men of Timor , which caused a sensation in the allied countries. Lt. Col. Spence was detached on November 11th and the 2nd in command, Major Bernard Callinan , became Allied Commander in Timor. On the night of November 30th to December 1st, the Australian Navy carried out a landing operation at Betano. Fresh Dutch troops were to be landed and 190 Dutch soldiers and 150 Portuguese civilians brought to safety. The landing craft Kuru served as a ferry between the shore and the two corvettes HMAS Armidale and HMAS Castlemaine . The Armidale was sunk by Japanese planes near Betano. 40 Australian crew members and 60 soldiers from the Dutch East India Army died. A total of 300 Portuguese women and children were brought from Timor to Australia by the Allied Navy during the war.

At the end of 1942 Japan had 12,000 soldiers in Timor, which made it impossible for the Allies to retake it. The Australian High Command estimated that it would now require three divisions and strong support from naval and air forces. The Australian commando units also had contact with the enemy more and more often and the Japanese succeeded more and more in cutting them off from their native supporters. The Australian Army was also involved in a number of loss-making battles near Buna , New Guinea. There was a lack of resources to continue operations on Timor. Therefore, at the beginning of December, the actions there gradually ceased.

The last of the original Sparrow Force, except for a few officers, were killed together with Portuguese civilians on December 11th and 12th by the Dutch destroyer Mr. Ms. Tjerk Hiddes brought to safety. There was no longer any way for the Allies to retake Timor. The Japanese had brought under their control all anchorages on the north and south coast of Timor, including Betano. There were now 12,000 Japanese soldiers stationed on the island. The Allied commandos came into contact with the enemy more and more frequently. With the completion of the airfield in Vila de Aviz (today Fuiloro ), Japan has now been able to extend its aerial surveillance to Australia.

On the night of January 9-10, 1943, the majority of the 2 / 4th was brought to safety by the destroyer HMAS Arunta from Kicras together with 50 Portuguese . Only the S Force , a small reconnaissance team, was left behind but was quickly spotted by the Japanese. Together with the last of the Lancer Force, the S Force managed to make its way to the eastern tip of Timor, where the Australian-British Z Special Unit also operated. The remaining Allied troops were finally brought from Timor on February 10 by the American submarine USS Gudgeon .

40 Australians were killed in the guerrilla phase. The losses of the Japanese are given as 1500 men.

From June 1943 the Allies had gained total air sovereignty over the area north of Australia. Practically every Japanese supply ship in the waters was sunk, so that neither further offensives nor an evacuation from Timor came into question for the Japanese army. Japanese and Taiwanese sources refer to Timor at this time as a “prison island” for the Japanese troops and the Europeans who remained there. A general bad harvest throughout Southeast Asia in 1943/1944 and the supply difficulties led to an increased requisition of food and cattle from the civilian population. The result was a great famine that killed many Timorese people. Military personnel and Timorese workers built roads and planted corn and rice fields to improve the supply situation. An estimated 50,000 Timorese were used for forced labor. The main roads from Kupang to Lautém and four roads from north to south were built in 1944. This way, the food supply stabilized until 1945.

The Portuguese colonial administration and the civilian population

Australian Timorese Allies Captured Pro-Japanese Timorese (Dec 1942)

Portugal remained neutral during the war, and the Portuguese authorities were responsible for civil administration in their colony until August 9, 1942. However, the Portuguese and Timorese sympathized with the Allies. Connections were maintained via the local telephone network and information about Japanese troop movements was passed on. The Allied troops had no further connections to the outside world due to the lack of functioning radio equipment. Others took direct part in the fighting, the International Brigade , an anti-fascist group of deportees (Deportados) , or the Red Brigade , which consisted of former newspaper editors, army officers, communists, socialists and even liberals. A total of about 600 Timorese and Portuguese fought actively on the side of the Australians. A well-known example of local resistance activists was the Portuguese deportee Manuel Viegas Carrascalão , who was sent to a prison camp for two years because of his fight against the Japanese. As a reward, Carrascalão was given a coffee plantation after the war, which is still owned by the family today.

In Australian military mythology, the neutrality of the Portuguese governor Ferreira de Carvalho has often been questioned. On February 20, 1942, the Japanese consul Kuroki met the governor to explain the question of Portuguese neutrality. Carvalho saw in the Japanese occupation a violation of neutrality, the consul was of the opinion that neutrality was already lost through the inability to protect the colony from the invasion of Allied troops. Kuroki stressed that only the Allies were the target of the Japanese operations and that one would respect Portuguese sovereignty and the security of the people as long as they would remain “neutral in the war”. Both sides agreed that the Japanese troops should be withdrawn as soon as a reinforcement of the Portuguese troops could guarantee the independence of the Portuguese territory. Until the end of the war there was still neither a Portuguese troop reinforcement nor a withdrawal of the Japanese. In the end, the Japanese did not give much thought to the governor's neutrality, but simply disempowered him by circumventing his authority and breaking the telegraph line to Lisbon.

In mid-March, two Portuguese citizens were arrested by the Japanese for collaborating with the Australians. Carvalho pressed for neutrality, while Colonel Doi insisted that he could not grant immunity to enemy collaborators . The Japanese then distributed a leaflet:

"PROCLAMATION. The Empire of Greater Japan is now at war with the Netherlands and also with Australia, which is part of the United Kingdom. The Japanese Imperial Armed Forces are obliged to take the necessary measures and means in Timor, provided that the Dutch and Australian armed forces are stationed in this neutral area. I, the Commander of the Japanese Imperial Forces, hereby request and declare the following: (1) Japanese Imperial Forces will be stationed in Portuguese Timor for self-defense in connection with their operations. (2) The Portuguese armed forces and non-combatants are strongly urged not to obstruct or disrupt any operation by the Japanese Imperial Forces. "

At that time, Doi still took the position that Portuguese neutrality was respected to the extent that, although cooperation with the enemy had to be prevented, the local population should not be used for the Japanese military. In a letter to Governor Carvalho, Colonel Doi finally stated on May 7th that there had been collaboration with the Allies and that these Portuguese and Timorese are now treated as hostile groups.

A Japanese memo from June 1942 describes Carvalho as stubborn and uncompromising because he refused to punish Portuguese officials and Timorese servants at the request of the Japanese and because he supported the " invading army ", as the Japanese called the Allied units. The governor, in summary, was seen as a major obstacle to air warfare and defense operations by the Japanese. On June 24, such obstruction led Tokyo to complain to Portugal's dictator Salazar, with a list of hostile acts committed by Portuguese officials and Timorese. But even two months later, the local Japanese administration could not see any change in the situation.

Australian sources state that Japan began destroying Portuguese rule over East Timor in early August 1942. Portuguese posts were systematically bombed, Timorese from West Timor allied with Japan were brought into the country and trained, propaganda was carried out among the local population, pro-Australian Portuguese officials and Timorese were killed, own paper money was issued and the colonial administration was eliminated. Teaching in Japanese was introduced in schools . Some Liurai lost their social position, others were persecuted, as was the Chinese minority in Timor. 60 Chinese were killed and 200 died from starvation and abuse. Collaboration with the Japanese was supported. For example, some members of Dili’s Arab community were given administrative posts or employment with the Japanese military police ( Kempeitai ).

Timorese civilians were victims of air strikes from both sides. From the end of 1942, Dili bombed two to three Allied aircraft once a week, and from November even daily, which claimed Japanese, Timorese and Chinese victims. The main destinations were the Japanese consulate (November 1942), the radio station (March 1943), a Portuguese ship and the hospital (February 1944). The population had already left the city in June 1942. In 1944 Lautém was bombed by the Australian Air Force. Other destinations were Aileu , Lahane , Bobonaro and Kupang. Unlike other areas in Southeast Asia, Portuguese Timor did not receive any compensation payments from Japan.

Ruins of the Chinese school in Aileu / Portuguese Timor (1970)

As early as March 1942, there were several rapes of Timorese and Chinese women by Japanese soldiers. In one incident, two Japanese soldiers tried to rape a mestiça but were killed by their brother and a Timorese servant. Since the incident was not reported, the soldiers were officially registered as missing. After hearing about this, Carvalho was primarily concerned about the safety of European women when he directed the administration of Dili and Aileu to bring prostitutes back to the city. As a result, a private Japanese company opened a brothel in Dili and brought Indonesians and Koreans to work there. From the Portuguese population in Timor there were violent allegations against their own colonial government because of their involvement in the recruitment of the " comfort women ". In order to protect the “white” women from the “colored” invaders, the Timorese rulers, by order of the administration, should provide girls for the Japanese. Many Chinese women were also forced into prostitution. Witnesses told how the Timorese liurais were forced to deliver girls for Japanese brothels. A Portuguese doctor reported in June 1946: “I know many places where the Japanese forced the rulers of the areas to send girls to the brothels. They blackmailed the rulers by threatening to send their female relatives to the brothels if they didn't cooperate. ”Women from what is now the Indonesian island of Kisar had to work in a so-called “ Japanese restaurant ” in Lautém. Timorese were also used to build roads or major projects such as the Lautém airfield (then Vila Nova de Malaca ). The Chinese were sent to work separately from the Timorese. Kisar residents were among the workers.

The Kemak of Atsabe rendered passive resistance by refusing to perform forced labor or deliver food to the Japanese. The occupiers therefore imprisoned Liurai Dom Siprianu and six of his relatives, who were inherited from him. If the occupiers were dissatisfied with the behavior of the population, the hostages were tied to a tree in the village and one was executed. All seven hostages were killed in this way. Nevertheless, the residents of Atsabe continued to resist and, for example, also hid Australian soldiers.

Memorial to the Portuguese victims of the Japanese occupation in Taibesi / Dili

As a result of the events, Governor Ferreira de Carvalho sent a message to Lisbon with the request to be able to evacuate the population of Portuguese origin to the offshore island of Atauro . But the ship with the answer never made it to Timor, and so the plan was not implemented. In October 1942 the Japanese had succeeded in recruiting a large number of Timorese. The Timorese auxiliaries suffered heavy losses in battle, as they were often used in the front line. The Portuguese, too, were increasingly forced to cooperate with Japan. At least 26 Portuguese civilians were killed in the first six months of the occupation, including local officials and a Catholic priest.

The attacks by Timorese, supported by Japan, on Portuguese administrative officials and civilians from the middle onwards, led Governor Carvalho to write a letter to the Japanese consul in Dili on October 24, 1942, asking for protection for the European civilian population. At first, the Japanese opposed this as meddling in Portuguese affairs, but agreed when Carvalho proposed that civilians should be assembled in Liquiçá and Maubara . The protection turned out to be an internment camp. About 600 Portuguese civilians and their families were gathered in the two places and the last Portuguese were disarmed. The conditions in the camp were poor, food was scarce and the hygienic conditions inadequate due to a lack of water. Although there was a Portuguese doctor who was later assigned two Japanese doctors, there was a lack of medicine, which is why many Portuguese died. In the first year Japanese soldiers guarded the camp, later Japanese Kempeitai along with Timorese guards and spies. Only the governor and mayor of Dili were given a reprieve.

From November 1st, the Allied High Command considered whether to arm Portuguese officials. This had previously only happened unofficially. From November 15, the Japanese ordered that all Portuguese civilians should move to neutral zones . Those who refused were seen as allies of the Allies. The result was that the Portuguese worked more closely with the Allies.

Timorese on the side of Japan

While in Portuguese Timor the local population was deeply divided into supporters for Japan and supporters for Australia and Portugal, Australian sources complained that in West Timor the Allies were not supported and even betrayed. This seems to have been one of the reasons for the Allied withdrawal from the western part of the island. In the west, the Japanese were often received as liberators from Dutch colonial rule. Many Malay soldiers in the Dutch colonial army deserted, and many of them later collaborated with the Japanese. According to the 48th Japanese Division, 3,000 Javanese and Ambonese worked for the Japanese on Timor, although not all of them voluntarily. Even before the arrival of the Japanese troops, some West Timorese began to attack symbols of colonial foreign rule. In Atambua , for example , where locals robbed the churches and Chinese traders.

Some rulers also skillfully switched between the sides. For example, on February 20, 1942, Hendrik Arnold Koroh, Raja from Amarasi in West Timor , informed a Dutch officer about the landing of Japanese troops in Batulesa. Koroh then greeted the Japanese and told a Japanese war reporter that he had listened to the Malay broadcasts on Radio Tokyo and that he had decided to support the Japanese. Koroh gave the Japanese strategic information and directed them to the location of the Australian troops in Desau , 40 kilometers east of Kupang. When the Japanese thanked him, Koroh asked them to wipe out every single man in the Dutch-Australian base.

From August 1942, the Japanese saw the recruitment of Portuguese and Timorese on the side of the Allies as a legitimation to recruit Timorese for war in Portuguese Timor, regardless of diplomatic protests or Portuguese sovereignty.

To mobilize the Timorese, the Japanese created two groups. On the one hand by the Japanese Navy, the organization Ōtori , which Kiyokoku Shigetoshi created to conduct intelligence operations in the Dutch East Indies. Most of the members were university students who were selected from the Kiyokoku community. 20 of the Ōtori came to Dutch Timor in February 1942. From March onwards, Timorese people were recruited from Atambua in Dutch territory, and from the middle of the year also in Portuguese Timor. In June the group had 45 members: Japanese, Arabs , Japanese Creoles and Timorese. They observed Allied movements, recruited Timorese by collecting information. They also sent two to three members to each city to build Japanese schools where Timorese children would be raised pro-Japanese. There were 100 students in Atambua and 150 in Niki-Niki . After the arrival of Yasube, the Ōtori worked with the army and their group, the Tomi , also in Portuguese Timor. The Tomi were subordinate to Lieutenant Seji Tomiki and the Yasube Division. The core was made up of graduates from the Nakano Army School, where officers were trained for military intelligence operations. Lieutenant Colonel Imamura instructed Tomiki to "fight locals with local means". Accordingly, Tomi and Ōtori adopted local customs in their work. People wore the local clothes, ate the same food, lived in the Timorese huts and even managed to learn Malay or Timorese languages. When the agents came to the villages, they handed over alcohol, salt, food cans and printed fabrics to the local authorities. The Japanese organized festivals and ceremonies, encouraging Timorese leaders to work together. Seiji Tomiki gave speeches to those present, talking about the common appearance and the crimes of the colonial rulers. He said the Japanese came to liberate the Timorese. Tomiki took advantage of old wounds that had previously been caused by the Manufahi rebellion put down by the Portuguese in 1912 . Wherever the Japanese encountered hostility, they also used pressure for assistance. The Japanese reports are silent about the form of this pressure. Speaking local languages ​​and eating Timorese dishes in particular proved to be effective means of building trust. The Dutch and Portuguese avoided eating the locals. Dom Joaquim da Costa Guterres from Ossu de Cima said at a joint festival with Ōtori agents:

“The Timorese were under the rule of the White Man for 300 years. They never ate at the same table with us. The Japanese do that now. The Japanese call us “friends”. I have now decided to sacrifice myself for the Japanese cause. My children too. The Japanese will make us richer and better our lives. We have to help the Japanese win the war as soon as possible. "

Monument to the ruler Evaristo de Sá Benevides, Maubisse

If Timorese rulers had chosen the side of the Japanese, they instructed their subjects to serve the invaders. Armed by Japan, they attacked anti-Japanese Timorese villages and the Australian guerrillas. The Portuguese called the Japanese auxiliary troops Colunas Negras ( the black columns ), or the term was extended to all Timorese collaborators who were hostile to the Portuguese. From the Japanese point of view, there were only a handful of Timorese soldiers trained by them who were under their command and were called heiho . They terrorized the civilian population until the end of the Japanese occupation and also provided the Japanese with information about allied troop movements. Seji Tomiki initially complained that the Timorese units were always an uncontrollable factor. Time and again, Timorese agents recommended a Japanese attack on a village which, when examined on the spot, showed that it had no contact with allies, but was traditionally enemies with the village of the informants. Tomiki also saw that in regions where the Japanese had not yet invaded, the Colunas Negras had already massacred, raped and looted. They hung the heads of the victims on trees. Among the Portuguese, the victims of the Timorese in particular were those who behaved inappropriately towards them and their traditions or who were involved in the suppression of the 1912 rebellion. From the Japanese side there is no information on the number of Colunas Negras, Portuguese reports estimate it to be 300 to 700 men in August 1942. By November 1942 the number is said to have risen to several thousand, including such prominent Timorese as the ruling family of Deribate .

In July 1942, according to Portuguese sources, the first "Japanese-inspired rebellions" took place in Turiscai and Hatulia . In Turiscai, 700 Moradores loyal to Portugal put down the rebellion. At the end of August there were further attacks by Timorese on Portuguese. Some Portuguese and Chinese were killed in the process, causing unrest among the Portuguese population. Liurai Faic from Fohorem had offered himself to the Japanese in Atambua and tried to eliminate Portuguese rule in Fohorem as early as April 1942. But he was quickly defeated and fled back to Atambua. In August he crossed the border again with his men and killed a Portuguese administrator. According to Portuguese information, Japanese forces were also involved in this attack. According to Portuguese records, three barefoot Japanese and Colunas Negras from Atambua appeared several times during the period in Dili and in the border region with West Timor. Ōtori and Tomi chronicles state that they did not begin their operations in Dili until September. Japan blamed the incidents on a "group of West Timorese" who were fighting for the Japanese and wanted to relocate in the east. They took action against the Portuguese because of previous abuse. Rather, the attack on Aileu (then Vila General Carmona ) on August 31, 1942 was carried out by the Colunas Negras. He claimed the deaths of five Portuguese soldiers and four other Portuguese officials and missionaries. According to Army sources, the Japanese armed forces were not directly involved in these incidents. The records of the navy are largely lost, so that one can only guess at the participation of the Ōtori during this time.

The Japanese also used intra-Timorese rivalries to their advantage. Their forces protected pro-Japanese groups and severely punished anti-Japanese. On August 11, 1942, there was the Maubisse rebellion, in which the non-Christian population resident there turned against the Portuguese and Christianized pro-Portuguese Timorese of Ainaro and Same , and here against Dom Aleixo Corte-Real , Liurai of Soro . Among other things, a Portuguese official was murdered. Dom Aleixo was the nephew of Nai-Cau , the traitor Liurai who had sided with Portugal during the Manufahi rebellion. A war within a war broke out. For his part, Dom Aleixo led a great revolt against the Japanese with his sons and followers. The pro-Japanese rebels were dispersed. Eventually, however, Dom Aleixo was surrounded by the Colunas Negras and regular Japanese troops in May 1943 and, when the ammunition ran out, captured. He and, according to Portuguese sources, his family were killed by the Japanese. After the war, Dom Aleixo in Portuguese Timor was stylized as a folk hero loyal to Portugal. Other victims of the Japanese among the Liurais were Evaristo de Sá Benevides von Maubisse (1943) and Carlos Borromeu Duarte von Alas (1945).

In October 1942, supported by the Japanese, 8,000 Timorese in the Aileu area and another 4,000 in the border area rebelled against the Portuguese, for whom the situation continued to deteriorate. The Japanese armed forces largely stayed out of the fighting and tried instead to destroy the Australian guerrillas. During this time, the Colunas Negras received an addition from Timorese from the Portuguese Dili, Aileu, Manufahi, Ossu and Lautém, which the Australians more and more narrowed. At the end of the year the allies of Colunas Negras from Lautém were attacked in Viqueque and Baucau and in January 1943 the Japanese and thousands of collaborators attacked the Australians in southeast Timor, which also led to the end of the guerrilla action in February and numerous victims among the Timorese on both sides led.

In 1945 the Japanese made efforts to unite the two halves of the island, for which the agent Tōru Maeda organized a meeting between Joaquim da Costa Guterres, the ruler of Ossu, the clan of Nai-Buti from Atambua and other Timorese nobles in June 1945. However, this collaboration did not have any concrete consequences.

Civilians evacuated to Australia

General Yamadas, with whom he had traveled to sign the deed of surrender, damaged bomber landing

Around 600 civilians, including many deportados who had actively supported the Allies, were evacuated to Australia in late 1942 / early 1943. Sometimes their families were there too. Most of the evacuees were housed in the former military camp Bobs Farm near Newcastle . Among them, for example, Francisco Horta , father of the later Nobel Peace Prize laureate José Ramos-Horta . Even official Australian sources describe the living conditions there as harsh. The internees were divided into Europeans from Portugal, priests and nuns and Timorese, along with Europeans born in Timor and people of mixed origins. Some deportados found a job in Newcastle and contacted trade unions and left-wing political circles, including the Communist Party of Australia . In February 1943, the camp administration reported that five residents refused to work and caused unrest, three of them well-known anarchists. On April 27, there were riots in the camp. In the dining room there was a dispute between the various political groups among the evacuees. The deportados armed themselves with knives. The priest Jaime Garcia Goulart asked the camp administration to remove the deportados . Instead, however, the clergy were relocated and the deportados remained on Bob's farm.

In the summer of 1943 the internees were divided up. 170 of them were sent to Armidale and Marysville to work there. Some returned in August / September. On September 14th, anarchists called a rally. Thereupon the two ringleaders were transferred from the camp administration to Newcastle, where they had to work in the house of the Salvation Army . On September 23, the two and twelve other deportados were transferred to Liverpool Camp in Sydney . There they had to wear the red jackets of prisoners of war. Other groups were added later. In January and February 1944, 27 inmates at Liverpool Camp went on two hunger strikes to seek their release. Some of them were then transferred to the Minimba Farm near Singleton , and twelve more to the internment camp at Tatura . In April they were reunited with their families and in August the inmates were brought from Tartura to Minimba. The evacuees from Bob's farm were brought to Narrabri West in early 1944 , as were the residents of Minimba in May 1945. After the end of the war, 562 evacuees returned from Newcastle to Dili on November 27 on board the Angola .

End of war

The Japanese commander Colonel Kaida Tatsuichi and his chief of staff Major Muiosu Shijo shortly before the signing of the document of surrender on board the HMAS Moresby
Brigadier General Dyke signs the Japanese declaration of surrender in Kupang

Japan feared that if Timor were lost, the Allies could use the island strategically. Speculations were made that the Allies would not return the colony to Portugal after a Japanese withdrawal. But only shortly before the surrender did Japan begin to restore Portugal's sovereignty over its colony in order to prevent Allied advantages. At the beginning of 1945 Portugal was informed that Japan would first evacuate the hinterland in the southern areas. Front areas like Timor would only be given up last. However, this rational approach also led to extremely difficult operations.

On May 16, 1945, Japan's Prime Minister Hideki Tojo agreed to negotiations with Portugal over a withdrawal from Portuguese Timor. The conditions were that Portugal should remain neutral, the colony should not be reoccupied by the Allies and Portugal should guarantee the safety of the retreating Japanese soldiers. On May 28, Japanese diplomats reported to Tokyo that Salazar intended to remain neutral and both parties agreed that the Japanese withdrawal would not take place until Portuguese forces arrived in Timor. Tojo feared that this could lead to clashes between Japanese and Portuguese soldiers, but Japan hoped that a Portuguese contingent could avert the threat of an Allied invasion.

On August 6th and 9th, the atomic bombs were dropped on Hiroshima and Nagasaki . The surrender of Japan was announced on August 15. On the same day, Tokyo informed its diplomats in Lisbon that Japan would now return control of Portuguese Timor to Portugal. On September 1, Japanese officials met with Governor Ferreira de Carvalho to agree to an end to the hostilities. On September 5, three days after the surrender ceremony on the battleship USS Missouri , Japan officially declared the return of the colony. Ferreira de Carvalho was given command of an armed Japanese contingent to maintain order. The weapons of the Japanese soldiers were handed over to Portugal. The transfer of arms to the Allies should not be negotiated in Tokyo, but in Lisbon. Japanese military and civilian personnel should be taken to United Nations assembly camps or to ports selected by the Allies. The telegraph connection from Lisbon to Dili was restored on September 12th.

Welcome Ceremony for the Allies in Dili (September 24, 1945)

Due to the previous occupation of Portuguese Timor by Australians and Dutch, Portugal asked the Allies to repair the war damage. The Allies and especially Australia evaded the question of the return of sovereignty. The US allegedly used the Timor question as leverage in the negotiations on the preservation of American bases in the Azores . Despite being informed of the transfer of power on September 10, they reassigned Timor as a Japanese-occupied territory before the Portuguese contingent arrived. Australia offered Portugal to send Australian troops to East Timor, but Lisbon turned down the offer two days later. It was only under massive pressure that Ferreira de Carvalho allowed an Australian military mission, supported by a Portuguese official, to negotiate terms of surrender with the Japanese. It appeared that Portugal's alleged concession to Japanese demands should be punished. A dispute arose over who should accept the Japanese declaration of surrender on Timor. Originally two ceremonies were planned - one in Dili and one in Kupang - Australia now requested a single ceremony in which the declaration should only be given to one Australian representative. This was to demonstrate that only the Australians resisted the Japanese and that the Portuguese - who with their "neutrality" had enabled the Japanese to base Timor on - had no part in the end of the war. On August 28, the Australian government asked Great Britain not to give Portugal any support to regain control of Portuguese Timor. Great Britain refused this - as did a second occupation of Timor by Australian troops - because of its good relations with Portugal. Regardless of this, Portuguese warships could not have been prevented from sailing from Mozambique or Ceylon for Timor.

As a prelude to the surrender ceremonies, Brigadier General Lewis Dyke accepted the declaration of the Japanese in West Timor on September 11, 1945 for Australia on the Australian HMAS Moresby . Much to their displeasure, representatives from the Netherlands were not allowed to attend the ceremony. On September 19, the Australian cabinet approved a separate surrender ceremony for East Timor in Dili. The Australian contingent then left Kupang in the direction of Dili. On September 23, Dyke congratulated Ferreira de Carvalho on restoring Portuguese rule. The official ceremony for this took place in Dili on September 26th. The long-awaited Portuguese ships Bartolomeu Dias and Gonçalves Zarco arrived in Dili the next day . Another two days later, Portuguese troop transports with over 2000 soldiers (infantry, engineers and artillery) reached the colony. Food and building materials were on board. The arrival of the ships was celebrated in Dili. Most of the Portuguese who remained in the colony were present, many Timorese, the commanders of Baucau (then Vila Salazar ) and Manatuto and loyal Liurai and village chiefs. At that point there were only 200 Japanese soldiers left in the Portuguese colony. Australia's behavior towards Portugal and the Netherlands in handling Japan's surrender was widely criticized.

The consequences of the Second World War on Timor

The church of Ermera after its destruction in the Second World War (October 1945) and after its reconstruction (June 1970)
Bunker in East Timor
Remains of a Japanese bunker in Parlamento (1970)

The allies, together with their Timorese allies, had succeeded in tying up an entire Japanese division so that it could not be used in New Guinea. The local population paid the price. While the Allies counted around 450 dead and the Japanese probably had around 2,000 dead, a total of between 40,000 and 70,000 Timorese lost their lives in World War II. The population of Portuguese Timor before the war was around 450,000.

The collapse of agriculture and traditional social structures led to famine and epidemics. The East Timorese still remember the brutality with which Japanese soldiers attacked supporters of the Australians. Torture, executions, systematic rape, flogging and forced labor by the Japanese are reported. A mass grave with 24 executed Australians and other allies was found near Kupang. The Oesapa Besar camp for prisoners of war was also located near Kupang , until it was moved to Java in August / September 1942 .

Portuguese sources list the names of 75 Portuguese and their relatives who died from the occupation. The Portuguese population numbered around 600 during the occupation. At least ten died in battle, 37 were murdered, and another eight died in captivity. Many of the dead were former deportees, but most of them were officials of the Portuguese administration. A stone monument was erected to commemorate the crimes against the Portuguese in Aileu . A memorial in Dili also commemorates the victims of the Japanese occupation. While many testimonies relating to Japanese crimes against the Portuguese, Chinese and Timorese have been collected, no trials have taken place. The war crimes against the Chinese and Timorese were of lesser interest to Australian investigators. However, it was precisely the simple Timorese who suffered most from Japanese reprisals and forced labor.

The occupation of Portuguese Timor by Allies and Japan is generally viewed as only an interruption to the colonial rule of Portugal. For the West Timorese, the Second World War marked the beginning of a turning point towards separation from the Netherlands. When the war ended, Portugal regained control of its colony in 1945. While West Timor with Indonesia gained its independence from the colonial power in 1949, East Timor was only granted the status of a Portuguese overseas territory in 1951. 300 to 400 Timorese who had collaborated with Japan were interned by the Portuguese for a short time on the island of Atauro after the end of the war. José Ramos-Horta states in his book, however, that Arnaldo dos Reis Araújo was the only Timorese who was sentenced to prison for war crimes in World War II. Depending on the source, Araújo is said to have spent nine or 29 years in prison. He was a leader of the Colunas Negras and a catequista , a religious teacher.

In August 2009, the Catholic Joseph Sisters from Sydney started a petition demanding that East Timor be awarded the Honorary Companion of the Order of Australia . This is justified with the support of the Timorese people for Australian soldiers in the battle for Timor during the Second World War.

See also


Film documentaries

Web links

Commons : Battle for Timor  - Collection of images, videos and audio files

supporting documents

  • Geoff Browne: Leggatt, Sir William Watt (Bill) (1894-1968) . In: Australian Dictionary of Biography, Volume 15 . Melbourne University Press, 2000, pp. 77-79.
  • Bernard Callinan: Independent Company: The Australian Army in Portuguese Timor 1941–43 . William Heinemann, London 1953, ISBN 0-85859-339-4 .
  • Archie Campbell: The Double Reds of Timor . John Burridge Military Antiques, Swanbourne, Western Australia 1994, ISBN 0-646-25825-7 .
  • Ernest Patrick Chamberlain : Forgotten Men: Timorese in Special Operations during World War II , January 26, 2010.
  • Peter Dennis, et al: The Oxford Companion to Australian Military History , Second. 2nd edition, Oxford University Press Australia & New Zealand, Melbourne 2008, ISBN 978-0-19-551784-2 .
  • Colin Doig: A History of the 2nd Independent Company and 2/2 Commando Squadron . Self-published, Perth, Western Australia 1986, ISBN 0-7316-0668-X .
  • Tom Frame, Baker, Kevin: Mutiny! Naval Insurrections in Australia and New Zealand . Allen & Unwin, St. Leonards, New South Wales 2000, ISBN 1-86508-351-8 , OCLC 46882022 .
  • G. Hermon Gill: Royal Australian Navy 1939-1942  (= Australia in the War of 1939-1945. Series 2 - Navy), Volume 1. Australian War Memorial, Canberra 1957, OCLC 848228 . Archived from the original on September 21, 2013.
  • Mac Grant: Reserve Commandos Inherit a Remarkable Legacy  (= Defense Reserves Yearbook 2004-2005). Defense Reserves Support Council, Canberra, Australian Capital Territory 2005, pp. 24-30, OCLC 223674990 .
  • Geoffrey C. Gunn: History of Timor , available from Centro de Estudos sobre África, Ásia e América Latina , CEsA of the TU Lisbon (PDF file; 805 kB).
  • Peter Henning: Doomed Battalion: The Australian 2 / 40th Battalion 1940–45. Mateship & Leadership in War & Captivity . Allen and Unwin, St Leonards 1995, ISBN 1-86373-763-4 .
  • William Bradley Horton: Through the Eyes of Australians: The Timor Area in the Early Postwar Period . In: Ajitaiheiyotokyu . 12, 2009, pp. 251-277.
  • Gordon Rottman: World War II Pacific Island Guide: A Geo-Military Study . Greenwood Press, Westport 2002, ISBN 0-313-31395-4 .
  • Christopher Shores and Brian Cull with Yasuho Izawa: Bloody Shambles, Volume II: The Defense of Sumatra to the Fall of Burma . Grub Street, London 1993, ISBN 0-948817-67-4
  • Kisho Tsuchiya: Indigenization of the Pacific War in Timor Island: A Multi-language Study of its Contexts and Impact , pp. 1-22, Journal War & Society, Vol. 38, no. February 1, 2018.
  • Tony Wheeler: East Timor . Lonely Planet Publications, 2004, ISBN 1-74059-644-7 .
  • Ken White: Criado: A Story of East Timor . Indra Publishing, Briar Hill 2002, ISBN 0-9578735-4-9 .
  • Lionel Wigmore: The Japanese Thrust  (= Australia in the War of 1939-1945. Series 1 - Army, Volume IV). Australian War Memorial, Canberra 1957, OCLC 53127430 . Archived from the original on October 12, 2013.
  • Christopher Wray: Timor 1942. Australian Commandos at War with the Japanese . Hutchinson Australia, Hawthorn, Victoria 1987, ISBN 0-09-157480-3 .

Individual evidence

  1. Tsuchiya: Indigenization of the Pacific War in Timor Island: A Multi-language Study of its Contexts and Impact , 2018, p. 2.
  2. ^ Gill: Royal Australian Navy 1939-1942. 1957, pp. 473-474
  3. ^ Gill: Royal Australian Navy 1939-1942. 1957, p. 496
  4. ^ Australian Society for the Study of Labor History: Paddy Kenneally, a 'Foot Soldier' ​​from Miller's Point , accessed November 15, 2019.
  5. ^ A b Dennis: The Oxford Companion to Australian Military History. 2008, p. 529
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  7. a b c d e f Tsuchiya: Indigenization of the Pacific War in Timor Island: A Multi-language Study of its Contexts and Impact , 2018, p. 3.
  9. ^ Henning: Doomed Battalion. 1995, p. 45
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  13. 2 / 4th Pioneer Battalion . Australian War Memorial. Retrieved January 5, 2010.
  14. ^ Peter Dunn - AUSTRALIA @ WAR: 148th Field Artillery. 2015, accessed February 20, 2018 .
  15. Bloody Shambles, Volume II: The Defense of Sumatra to the Fall of Burma . S. 174 .
  16. Bloody Shambles, Volume II: The Defense of Sumatra to the Fall of Burma . S. 175 .
  17. ^ Dennis: The Oxford Companion to Australian Military History. 2008, pp. 25 and 529
  18. a b c d e f Australian War Memorial Transcript
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  20. ^ Henning: Doomed Battalion. 1995, p. 95
  21. ^ L. Klemen: The Japanese Invasion of Dutch West Timor Island, February 1942 . 1999-2000. Retrieved October 16, 2013.
  22. 防衛 研修 所 戦 史 室, 戦 史 叢書 蘭 印 攻略 作 戦, Tokyo: Asagumo-Shimbun, 1967 (Official Japanese Military History from the National Institute for Defense Studies, Japan)
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  30. Chamberlain: Forgotten Men: Timorese in Special Operations during World War II , 2010, pp. 2 & 62.
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  44. a b Testimony Shows Comfort Women Were Forcibly Sent to Brothels , Donga, April 23, 2007
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  54. Maeda, Tooru: Chimoru-Ki, pp. 125-163, Soudosha (Japan) 1982.
  55. Tsuchiya: Indigenization of the Pacific War in Timor Island: A Multi-language Study of its Contexts and Impact , 2018, p. 20.
  56. a b c Vadim Damier and Kirill Limanov: History of Anarchism in Timor Leste , November 16, 2017. , accessed on November 8, 2018.
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This article was added to the list of excellent articles on February 18, 2007 in this version .