‘That damned elusive pimpernel: Tan Malaka and the Patjar Merah stories

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About Tan Malaka,
Written by Oliver Crawford, and was originally published in New Mandala,
Jul 07, 2020


The Indonesian Marxist and anti-colonial revolutionary Tan Malaka (1894-1949) exists in two forms, real and fictional.

The real Tan Malaka was born around 1894 and had two spells at the forefront of Indonesian politics, first in the early 1920s, when he was a leader of the Communist Union of the Indies, and second during the Indonesian Revolution (1945-49), when he campaigned for a radical policy of social revolution and armed resistance against the Dutch. Between these two spells he spent twenty years in exile (1922-42), living for the most part under a variety of false identities in Siam, the Philippines, Singapore, and China.

Read the full article here.