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Decades of Turbulent Decolonization After WW2 Launched With The Dutch-Indonesian Wars of 1945-49

August 31, 2023
00:00 44:26
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The Dutch–Indonesian War was one of the first postwar struggles that followed the Japanese surrender in September 1945, which left a power vacuum in the colonial Dutch East Indies (Indonesia). The infant nation didn’t have a normal standing army but was a fragile coalition of various forces involved in the struggle: the Indonesian nationalists who immediately proclaimed an independent republic, remaining Japanese troops, and revolutionary student groups. Pitted against them were the Dutch forces, which arrived in 1946, and tried to restore its colony.

Today’s guest is Marc Lohnstein, author of “The Dutch-Indonesian War 1945-49.” We discusss how the nationalists were defeated by Dutch and Dutch-led local forces in urban areas, but how their guerrillas evaded Dutch troops in the jungle hills and swamps.

While mostly forgotten, this war is one of many such conflicts in the turbulent years of decolonization.

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Meet Your Host
Meet Your Host
Scott Rank is the host of the History Unplugged Podcast and a PhD in history who specialized in the Ottoman Empire and modern Turkey. Before going down the academic route he worked as a journalist in Istanbul. He has written 12 history books on topics ranging from lost Bronze Age civilizations to the Age of Discovery. Some of his books include The Age of Illumination: Science, Technology, and Reason in the Middle Ages and History’s 9 Most Insane Rulers.. Learn more about him by going to scottrankphd.com.
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