(Chapters XI - XIII)

Tan Malaka (1948)

This cut down version of GERPOLEK is translated from the French, which is translated from the Dutch which, in turn, is translated from Bahasa. It should be used with caution therefore but will be useful as a crib when a translation straight from Bahasa to English is done. Nevertheless Tan Malakka had a great reputation as an educator of the workers and peasants using simple grammatical constructions to explain complex matters and this seems to come through. Note by translator and transcriber, Ted Crawford July 2007.

Source: Tan Malakka, “The Partisan And His Military, Political And Economic Struggle II”, Quatrième  Internationale, January 10, 1952, pp.28-35, (6,600 words)

The Partisan and his Struggle Military, Political and Economic


We finish the publication of large parts from the booklet GERPOLEK (The Partisan and its military, economic and political struggle). In the preceding number of QUATRIÈME  INTERNATIONALE, we had published the first four chapters of this booklet. Leaving out the explanation of the broad rules of military strategy, which take up chapters V-X, we now restart the publication of chapters XI, XII and XIII. There are left two chapters, one on the UN in which Tan Malakka warns his compatriots against any illusion in this organisation and one on considerations as to the tactics of the guerrillas.

For several years Quatrième  Internationale has tried to follow the various stages of the development of the Indonesian revolution. We draw our readers attention in particular to the articles by J. Van Steen: “Tan Malakka and the Indonesian revolutionary movement” (Quatrième  Internationale July-August 1949), of Th. Van der Kolk: “The independence of Indonesia” (Quatrième  Internationale December 1949-January 1950) and of J. van Vliet: “The Strike of the Plantations Workers in Java and revolutionary upsurge in Indonesia” (Quatrième  Internationale November 1950-January 1951).





As we said before, the tactics of the partisans also includes the tactics of advancing then retreating (a war of attrition). That does not mean only this tactic formed an exclusive part of the partisan’s war. It can be also used by a large well organised army, within the framework of one or the other strategy. But for an army of partisans, the tactics of advancing then retreating represent the first principle of great importance in the control of the war. What is therefore this principle for the partisans? This principle is as follows: to advance to destroy the enemy, and to withdraw so as not to be destroyed by the enemy. It is in fact the principle of any war. But the partisans who very few and are badly armed must simultaneously take account of the need for advancing and of withdrawal. These two movements are carried out as a single movement so to speak.

B) TACTIC OF THE PARTISANS This tactic to advance then to move back will become clearer, when we enumerate some of the methods which the partisans must apply. These methods are mainly the following ones:
1. To carry out feint attacks.
2. Not to give battle on open terrain.
3. To withdraw as soon as attacked by a strong detachment of enemy troops.
4. To surround and destroy small enemy detachments.
5. To lure the enemy into ambushes.
6. To make sudden on the enemy.
7. To concentrate one’s forces against the weakest position of the enemy.
8: To attack like lightning with all one’s forces.
 9. To also disappear without being seen, with the speed of the wind.

There are various methods of partisan war which one can also call stratagems. The veterans of the wars of Atjeh partisans for example always mention the many tricks which were used by the partisans in the wars, large and small, of 1872 and 1908.

There are many stratagems based on the needs of the enemy soldiers. Famished enemy soldiers can be lured into an ambush by a couple of partisans who simulate the transport of known food such vegetables, padi, chickens, etc… and run in front of the enemy detachment. Or by partisans disguised as women who saunter in front of the eyes of the enemy soldiers while wriggling their behinds. Enemy soldiers who in these cases start to feel certain needs can be lured in an ambush prepared in advance there to be disarmed or eliminated, by forces stationed in the surrounding area. The partisan war which has already lasted tens of years in China and our own military experiments showed in the clearest way that by applying the tactics of the partisans one can acquire enemy weapons of all kinds, although the partisans themselves are armed only with spears of bamboo with sharpened points.

A detachment of fifty partisans, armed with rifles and one or two machine-guns or mortars can obtain striking successes. Such a detachment must act like a vanguard and lead a people’s army, five or six times larger and armed with spears of sharpened bamboo, large knives and hand grenades. A combination of a detachment of partisans and the people’s army, three hundred to six hundred, constitutes a formidable military force for the destruction of a convoy or a detached enemy post, or for the seizure of weapons or ammunition dump of the enemy. An force of this size, as long as it is very mobile (it attacks here today, tomorrow there; appearing and disappearing in a flash, almost without being seen) can sow confusion in the enemy ranks, develop uncertainty and the fear, and above all, the feeling of the enemy that he is on the edge of a volcano, without knowing at which precise time he is likely to become the victim of an attack.

In order to carry out all these movements with the speed of lightning and in order to be able to take as quickly as possible such measures which often imply great dangers, the partisan must have exceptional qualities of intelligence, initiative, energy, character and morals. He does not need only these qualities to carry out an action, but also to lead of a detachment of the people’s army.

By applying the tactics of advancing and then retreating he is never frightened, but keeps his courage and his full confidence in victory in all circumstance. He refuses to surrender, even if he is threatened on all sides.

The partisan behaves like an elder brother towards young people and like a younger brother towards older partisans. He obeys those who have the most intelligence, audacity, perseverance, morals as well as knowledge of the capacities of the area of Atjeh [1] which, forbidden by every combatant. A detachment of the people’s army follows the orders of the partisan with obedience and the greatest swiftness.

E) COMBINED TACTICS The combined tactics represent the combination of the tactics of the war of position, mobile warfare and the war of guerrilla. Its aim is to overwhelm enemy action, also based on the combined tactics. Supposing that the enemy holds three forts or operates on the basis of three bases which mutually support one another. In this case, we must coordinate our attacks or our defence.

Using a very strong position, with two or three combined positions as a base, we can use mobile detachments or detachments of partisans, or both, to counter the enemy, to paralyse his action and to even conquer his fortifications. What is important in this case, it is the coordination carried out in the application of the combined tactic advancing or retreating troops. They should not advance independently from each other nor retreat in disorder.

The basic detachment to carry out a defence or an attack, coordinated, or combined, must be a unit armed with rifles, mortars and machine-guns. Such a detachment helped by an armed force the people’s volunteers, five to ten times its size. With such a force from 50 to 100,000 combined we will be able to defend or conquer a residence [2] or a province. If we succeed above all in seizing a mountainous area and transforming it into fortress of partisans for supply etc…, and if we moreover dispose of mobile units which, can be used as assault forces, we will be able to thus hold or even liquidate most of the enemy army… Especially, if the attack of our combined forces, observing the rule “always hit them” [3], moves simultaneously against 13 regions of Indonesia, 3 of Java, 3 of Sumatra, 3 of Borneo, 3 of the Celebes and 1 on the Mollucan archipelago. The Dutch army, whose military value is not high, would certainly rush to their destruction in 13 places at the same time. Thus there is a region, we know where some guerrilla combatants armed only with daggers, have for nearly forty years avoided total submission to the Dutch. How much more, could the whole of Indonesia be conquered, if it is defended by all the people having far more weapons and able to use the many tactics centralised in partisan tactics.



Admiral Mountbatten who was recently named Viceroy of the Indies, once admitted that it would be impossible with the Dutch army to conquer the Indonesian people by large scale military action.

He admitted that in 1945, i.e. at the time when the whole people took part in the struggle. After internal and external pressure, the British troops were forced to leave Indonesia on November 15, 1946. In the United States, powerful voiced called for the withdrawal of the British troops. The English were reminded that the task of their troops in Indonesia consisted only in disarming the Japanese and dealing with the European prisoners. Their task was not to carry out the war against the Indonesian people or to oppress it. Australia supported the Indonesian revolution, by starting a boycott of the Dutch naval ships leaving for Indonesia. In the Arab countries and in the Philippines, there was a great feeling of sympathy for Indonesia. The British people themselves, tired of the war, demanded the withdrawal of their troops. Moreover, resistance to the British forces by Indonesian youths had often had as a result that our young people seized weapons. In Sumatra and Java, the Gurkhas [4] started to surrender in great numbers. This fact especially, as well as the possibility of a victory of the Indonesian revolution, gave the British great concern. British imperialism feared that the victory of the Indonesian revolution would spread to India, to Burma, to Malaysia and to other colonies, which were also liberating themselves. For this reason, the English decided to withdraw their troops in mid-November 1946. But the Dutch troops which were to replace the British troops in Indonesia were not yet ready.

Under the pressure of these circumstances – the English having to leave, but Dutch not yet being ready - the decision of the Republic to conclude an armistice was accepted by Dutch and English with a sigh of relief and a smile of gratitude for the results of their diplomacy.

This armistice had as a result that the army and combat organizations attack on the towns of Batavia, Semerang, Soerabaja, Bandoang, Medan, etc could not be continued. Meanwhile, the Dutch hastened to send extra troops in Indonesia. They sent in particular the division known as “The December 7” of sinister renown. By reinforcing their military and economic positions, they succeeded, together with the English, in conclude the agreement of Lingaddjati. The promises made by the Dutch in the agreement of Linggadjati seemed very attractive. But it soon appeared that the agreement of Linggadjati could be interpreted in the contrary direction by the Dutch in order to achieve their own goals, namely the re-establishment of the colonial rule and the destruction of the Republic of Indonesia. Although the Dutch had obtained, thanks to the agreement of Linggadjati, full powers in the economic field and the recognition of the sovereignty of the Dutch crown in the Republic, they were still not satisfied. They demanded a joint gendarmerie on the territory of the Republic, as an expression of the recognition of the Dutch Crown by the Republic. It was clear that the Dutch design of “collaboration” hardly differed from the conception once held by the Japanese on “collaboration between Japan and Indonesia”.

The government of the Republic could not accept this proposal of a joint gendarmerie on its territory. Such a proposal was in complete contradiction to the will of the people. If the government had accepted it, a great civil war would, without any doubt, have burst out in the Republic. This is why the government of the Republic was obliged, whether it wanted it or not, to reject the proposal for a joint gendarmerie. Following this rejection and owing to the fact that the Dutch felt themselves to be much stronger now in the military and economic field, they launched a surprise attack on July 21, 1947. The Republic, which during the whole year of negotiations had staked everything on these discussions and “construction” together with the Dutch, was decieved in its hopes. It lost the west of the island of Java, and part of the East and Center of the island. The Dutch are currently hardly 30 km from the town of Solo. There thus did not remain any other solution for the government of the Republic, deceived and damaged, than to agree the proposal of the U.N. to conclude an armistice and to approve a commission of “good offices” as a mediator. When the negotiations started, this “commission of the good offices” threw off the mask and showed its real nature. It was made up representatives of three colonialist countries. It was thus not possible for those who themselves defend the principles of colonialism to reject the colonial mode of another power, the Netherlands.

The “commission of the good offices” is the instrument of the American, Belgian and British imperialism (represented by Australia). It uses the Dutch as an instrument to serve the interests of the powers which make it up. On their side, the Dutch made all possible use of the aforementioned commission in their own interests. Both sides benefited at expense of the Indonesian people, who became just bargaining commodities. By the agreement of Renville made at the beginning of this year (1948), the Dutch property everywhere where it existed before the war was recognised, although the Dutch attacked the Republic, murdered 40,000 people, men, women, old men and children, in the south of the island of the Celebes [5], destroyed or stole of many Indonesian properties, and shot and killed thousands of Indonesians in Java, Sumatra, Borneo, Bali, etc.

To return the property to the Dutch and to every other foreigner implies that it is necessary to give political rights to these foreigners so that they can manage properties of such size. Is not politics necessary to begin with to oversee the established economic order? Is there a single power in the world whose economy is either entirely dominated by the foreigner, while the political power continues to belong in reality to the indigenous population?

If all the companies, mines, factories, if the whole system of transport and the banks became again property of the Dutch, as was the case in the “Dutch Indies”, such would require a political power corresponding to their economic power. The power of the Dutch in the field of the police force, the army, justice, finances and the Foreign Affairs should in these cases being sufficient to guarantee the defence and the development of industry, the trade and finances which were in the hands of the Dutch and other foreigners. The Dutch would then come to demand political power equivalent to, or almost to what they formerly had at the time of the existence of the Dutch Indies.

But the government of the Republic is also aware of the proclamation of August 17, 1945 and is conscious that the people and the youth, who made great sacrifices are not ready to return purely and simply to the state of Dutch oppression. It is a difficulty which the Republic’s delegation (at the commission of good offices) cannot easily overcome, and it is, also the reason for which the negotiations have so many times led to a dead end, although the Indonesian government has already made too many concessions, such as the recognition of the government of Eastern Indonesia, the abandonment of Wiranata Kusuma, the cessation of hostilities, evacuation of the “pockets” in territory occupied by the enemy, etc… etc…

By the agreements of Linggadjatti and Renville, the government of the Republic recognised Dutch sovereignty over all Indonesia. As the Republic is only one part, and even a small part of the whole of Indonesia, the Dutch demanded that their sovereignty extend to the army, Foreign Affairs and finances of the Republic. The agreement of Linggadjatti also mentioned that Dutch and Indonesians would collaborate on the army, Foreign Affairs, finances, economic affairs and cultural matters. Later, during the interpretation and of the execution of this agreement, it appeared that the Dutch understood this “collaboration” as the establishment of Dutch sovereignty in all the political fields.

One can summarise what precedes in the following way:


A) Within the Dutch Indonesian Union there will be an Imperial cabinet and a council representing the Union.

B) Although the Dutch clearly did not express it, their intention is to subordinate the Indonesian government to this Imperial cabinet.

C) The management of international relations is entirely in the hands of the Dutch who have sovereignty over all Indonesia. The Republic does not have the right to maintain or use contacts arising from its recognition by certain Arab countries.

D) The republican army must be disloved. From the point of view of the Dutch  this is in conformity with their sovereignty).

E) The question of finances, the plebiscite, etc


A) The union is an alliance between two independent powers, the Netherlands and Indonesia.

B) The Indonesian government demands the recognition of the sovereignty and the independence of the United States of Indonesia, which thus does not fall under rule of the Imperial Cabinet.

C) The government declares itself ready to discuss (?) and to take into account (?) this request of the Netherlands. It is difficult for the government to declare null and void the independence proclaimed by its own people and its youth. By accepting this request, the proclamation of independence would appear a joke in the eyes of the world.

D) The military question is urgent. The rebuilding and the rationalisation which are to be carried out will probably have abrupt and undesirable results for the movement of emancipation (May 1948).

E) Continue to make concessions or… to fight!

Before the Dutch had returned to Indonesia at the beginning of 1946, their intentions were already clearly apparent to me. It is the Dutch imperialist tendency which led them to adopt their position during negotiations which had gone on already for nearly two years.

The Dutch imperialist tendency has as a result that they were unable of making considerable concessions to the Indonesian people, even if they wanted to. And this, without even mentioning that a recognition of full independence for whole of Indonesia meant the fall of Dutch imperialism and the pauperisation of the Dutch people. To realise of the accuracy of this assertion, the attentive readers are invited to take note of the other booklets which I wrote (of which one, entitled “Mass Action”, was written in the middle of 1926). Having described the  imperialist character of the Netherlands, I had put forward the following claim with the Congress of Persatuan Perdjoangan (Popular Front) on January 3, 1946: TO NEGOTIATE ONLY ON THE BASIS OF RECOGNITION OF FULL AND TOTAL INDEPENDENCE AND THE CONFISCATION WITH ALL THE ENEMY PROPERTY.

I am ready to undertake negotiations with the Netherlands after the recognition of the independence of Indonesia. In consequence of this recognition, the Dutch troops must leave the Indonesian coasts and seas. If these troops are not withdrawn, the Dutch should be regarded as enemies. And the enemy properties should indeed be confiscated. All this is in conformity with the right of war and the international law.

In order to ensure that the people are able to continue the fight for the defence of independence proclaimed on August 17, 1945, the Popular Front had required the formation of a government of the people and an army of the people [6]. To put forward these claims was to fulfil my duty as an Indonesian citizen. But I was not heard. They even sought to silence my voice. I was arrested at the request of the Indonesian delegation in the Netherlands. Thus, the negotiations against which I declared myself as they were not on the basis of recognition of complete independence, were prolonged for two years. With which result? Continuously reinforcing their army and consolidating their political and economic position, the Dutch are in the process of taking everything and making more and more demands. Today, in May 1948, the government of the Republic holds power on only 10% of Indonesian territory. And the Dutch continue to pursue a policy and a “diplomacy” which confirm the popular saying: insatiable as a Dutchman who tries to seize land. Thus, the recognition of the rights of Dutch property was then extended to the recognition of Dutch sovereignty over all Indonesia. This right to sovereignty already recognised is today exploited by the Dutch with all the malice of those “who try to seize land”, in order to dominate all the belongings of the Indonesian people. In other terms: today they attempt in every way to recreate colonial domination, i.e. their full powers over the life and the death of the Indonesian people.

As two years ago, I continue to defend the following position: to negotiate only on the basis of recognition of full and total independence. My point of view is in conformity with the proclamation of independence of August 17, 1945 and, on this subject, I must note:

1. That a Dutch Union, subject to the Dutch Crown, is in contradiction with the Proclamation and popular sovereignty. This popular sovereignty is in my inalterable and indivisible opinion, both temporarily and permanently. The government of Indonesia cannot be transformed into gathering of Abdul Kadirs or Hussein Djajadiningrat [7].

2. That the statute of Indonesia, unitary or federal, unified Republic or the United States of Indonesia, must depend exclusively on the competence and the decisions of Indonesians. The Dutch, like any other foreigners, do not have the right to involve themselves in matters relating to the constitution of the Indonesian Republic.

3. That the question of the army, the foreign relations, finances, etc… must depend exclusively on competence and the efforts of the Indonesian people themselves.

4. That the “plebiscite” is in contradiction to the text and the spirit of the Proclamation. The people proclaimed on August 17, 1945, before the world, their absolute right to freedom and sovereignty. To organise a plebiscite for 70 million Indonesians spread over 4.5 million square kilometres, because it was newly submitted by the Dutch, would mean treason to the Proclamation! Thus I pose the problems of struggle in the political and diplomatic field as problems of political and diplomatic war!

That the people, youth and especially the guerrilla combatants remember what the results were of negotiations carried out once between the ancestors of the good Indonesian children and the Dutch“ who try to seize land”. Listen to the tale of the Dutchman who tries to extend his lands. As soon as he has land, he builds a fence at its edge and starts to plant potatoes all along this fence. These potatoes start to grow in all the directions beyond the fence. When they are sufficiently grown, the Dutchman moves the fence to include all “his” potatoes. He surely has the right to protect “his” property he says. And the new ground, covered with “his” potatoes has become “his” ground all the same… he adds. Thus the Dutchman continued to plant his potatoes and to add new fields to his lands, until that satisfies him!



During the time when the war developed in our favour, the Dutch had neither time nor the opportunity to consolidate their economic positions. Attacks outside and inside the cities occupied by them caused them constant difficulties and threatened their life every day and every hour. The companies, the factories and the mines could not be exploited any more. They were not in a position to trade with foreigners. They were not only badgered by the army and the combat units, but the formations of clandestine fight, the troops which applied the scorched earth tactic and the sabotage groups left the Dutch no moment of rest or of reflexion. They could not even leave their houses in total safety. Thus, chaos in Dutch economic life increased day in day. They did not receive any help for the 8 million guilders which they were to spend daily to maintain their army. This expenditure was very heavy for the impoverished Netherlands lacking new resources.

But, after the conclusion of the armistice and the beginning of the policy of “negotiation” and “peace”, the Dutch returned to their old companies, factories, mines and offices. Again, in Sourabaja, Semarang, in Batavia and in Bandoeng, Pedang; Palembang and Medan, in Pontianak, Bandjermasin and Balikpapan, in Malassar and in other places resounded with their orders to the Indonesian workers who worked the factories and loaded the ships. All these activities could not be done by the Dutch. They started again to export rubber, oil, tin, the tea, sugar, quinine, etc… produced by the Indonesian workers. In such a “peaceful” situation the Dutch were able to consolidate their economic position and to thus cover their military expenditure. Their foreign trade starting to be restored, they could again borrow money from the United States and thus reinforce their own army, their economy and their finances. In addition, they continued to maintain the blockade of the trade of the Republic. They seized or sank the ships of the Republic which left Indonesia loaded with goods. It was thus the intention of the Dutch to become richer every day, while ever more impoverishing the Republic.

After “the incident” of July 21, 1947, almost all the areas of the island of Java producing a surplus fell into the hands of the Dutch. We preserved only areas which produce less than they consume, like Bodjonegoro, Patjitan, Djokjakarta and Solo. On the territory of the Republic, which suffered already from a shortage of food and textiles, confusion increased even more by the monetary war that the Dutch carried out against the republican currency. The Dutch took directly or indirectly a series of disgraceful measures lower the value of the republican currency.

Consequently, the conditions of existence for the people continually got worse, the fall of the currency causing a constant rise in the prices of the goods of basic needs (food and textiles). This economic situation disturbs for the people became even more difficult, in consequence of the presence of true “a 5th column”, infiltrated by the Dutch with the worst intentions into economic administration, military, political, etc…

Our government, in the “peaceful” atmosphere established, facilitated the entry of all kinds of spies, camouflaged as “press correspondents” or representatives of such or such “workers” organization. During what revolution does one allow enemies or people with benevolent intentions towards the enemy, to enter and leave vital places for defence freely, like Malang-Cheribon? Decades after the victory of the revolution, the Soviet government caused greater difficulties for the entry or the exit of its territory that it is not the case today for Indonesia, where the revolution still develops with all its violence…

To improve the economic situation of the Indonesian people, it is not enough to found a so-called “brains trust”. Such an improvement could only be carried out with the collaboration of and for the benefit of the whole people. The Indonesian workers, the peasants and small traders beginning must themselves take part in the development of plans for production, consumption and the exchange of goods. It is not enough for a dozen people, with grandiose titles, to be of the opinion that workers and the peasants need this or that, without asking the opinion of the interested parties themselves. The Indonesian workers and the peasants will start to work really actively only when they understand the use of the economic plan for themselves. If a “brains trust”, works out a plan of production and of distribution, exclusively from the point of view of the ideas of a few people, such a plan does not live long in Indonesia. And this, especially if this plan envisages “collaboration” with the Dutch and other foreign capitalists. Similar projects, in the final analysis, would only benefit foreign capitalists, and this “brain trust” would be used only as promoter of foreign capitalism.

The epidemic of Dutch capitalism during 350 years, and of the Japanese militaro-capitalism during 3 and half years are the cause of the economic disease from which the Indonesian people suffers and which still remains deeply established. This economic disease cannot be cured by means of potions and of pills: only a surgical operation will eliminate it. The economic position of the Indonesian people could only be restored if at least 60% of the production, the distribution, the wages, export and of the importation will be property strictly controlled by a completely independent Republic. (see the “Economic Plan” of Tan Malakka). The plans worked out by dozen of “brains trusts”, in the spirit of a collaboration with the great foreign capital, will all lead to the exploitation and the oppression of the Indonesian workers and peasants. I feel obliged to draw the attention of the workers particularly to this fact! But that by no means implies that the proletarians, the workmen, the peasants, and the section of the tradesmen and intellectuals who have nothing, must remain inactive in the revolution. The proletarians put into execution a real economic plan of great scale in the period will follow the victory of the revolution currently occurring. But even during a revolution, the proletarians must carry out an economic plan which is nothing but a plan of a war economy.

In the economic war against the Dutchmen, the attitude and the measures to be taken must be really directed against the Netherlands, i.e. it is necessary to take of measurements such in the economic field (production, distribution, etc) that the economic position of the Netherlands is weakened and that the insurgent people can benefit!

The revolutionary people should never collaborate in the expansion of the production and trade of the Dutch! The most effective solution would be a massive refusal of the workers to work in the areas occupied by the Dutchmen, that is in the companies, the mines, the factories or the stores. It would be still better, if all the people refused at the same time to work for the Dutch and to buy goods from the Dutch. But the lack of perseverance, the general conditions of life, and thousand and one reasons will result, all the same, in the revolutionary people letting themselves be hired by Dutchmen. One can then agree to be hired, with the intention of sabotaging the Dutch companies or building a clandestine organisation. But nobody can deny that the “boycott” of recruitment and trade of the Dutch represents the most effective weapon against the Dutch plunderers. We must at the same time combine this measure with others which make it possible to increase and to improve production and distribution for the people themselves. In the first place we must think that the peasants will not produce more than they do consume themselves, if the surplus of their production cannot be exchanged for textiles, salt, oil, etc… If they cannot buy these goods any more, they will not produce any more that what their families need, and thus agricultural production will fall. If in addition the peasants can buy only foreign goods (textile, etc…), only from the manufacturers then foreign traders will benefit from this situation. To stop the profits running into the pockets of the enemy who would use these profits to cover his military expenditure; to lead on the other hand the peasants to increase production, the people must themselves build enterprises which can produce the basic necessities.

We know that we will build factories provided with modern machines only after the achievement of our independence. But we also know that for hundreds of years, our people have woven and forged axes, produced oil and salt and recently learned how also to manufacture “ketja” (grains of soya), “tahou” (cakes made of the soya flour), “temple” (cakes made of grains of raised soya) etc…. We also have machines to produce textiles, paper, quinine, alcohol, ice, etc, although on a small scale and using processes that are not modern.

Our economic policy must tend to increase the means we currently have. Our experts must invent and produce constantly new drugs and instruments of work as was the case during the Japanese occupation. The satisfactory results which were already reached must be built on and improved. In addition to, a system of co-operatives must complete our economic war and make us capable of resisting the enemy’s economic measures.

The co-operatives are a powerful economic weapon, comparable to the polical weapon of a rifle or a grenade in the hands of a partisan. The partisans must learn how to serve co-operatives with the army, whatever the place where they carry out their struggle: in the cities, fields or mountains.

The co-operatives in as much as they are the peoples system of economy and as much as they are an auxiliary means to carry out the partisan war, can be classified in five categories: co-operatives of production, distribution, transport, credit and market. These five categories of co-operatives can and must be propagated, built and be controlled by the partisans wherever they are. In the cities producer co-operatives can be built (to manufacture patjols, axes, textiles, etc), distribution co-operatives, (for the distribution of goods like the textiles, tools, etc…), transport co-operatives (for the carriage of goods of a place with another), credit co-operatives (to obtain capital by collecting taxes of one or two percent) and market co-operatives (to lower prices on the market). In the fields and even in the mountains one can build to start with co-operatives of production initially (agricultural), of transport and credit.

The purpose of the co-operatives are initially to obtain prices as low as possible for their members. The profit which must be extremely low, can be used for, to spread the organisation itself, for social aims or the conduct of the partisan war itself. These aims comprise the defence against the enemy economic measure of an imperialist and capitalist character. The co-operative in the economy is, finally a good and practical way to gain the harmony and to develop the spirit of mutual aid, in the cities, the fields and the mountains. These co-operatives, make it possible for each partisan to put into practice and to increase his leadership abilities. Because the partisan must not only prove and form himself in the military field, but also in the political and economic field, in order to be able effectively direct his people. Thanks to his capacities as leader in the fight, and in the political and economic field the partisan is at the same time a leader of the State in the narrowest sense of the term.

To be able to exercise his leadership functions in the best way, the partisan must have sufficient knowledge of military, political and economic matters, which include with regard to this last category above all of knowledge of the co-operatives. It is however quite as interesting that the partisan has a sufficient social and collective feeling. Knowledge of the principles, the laws, the organisation and the administration, the partisan can acquire them by the study of some booklets available in his milieu. But the social feeling that he must have, must belong to him naturally in part, from his birth, and partly must result from actions and his formation. As soon as he has leisure, when there are no battles to fight, nor military exercises to be carried out, the partisan must establish as intimate contacts as possible with the population around him. Towards the older people, he must behave like an elder brother or a son, towards the less old people like an elder brother or a father. Everything lent must be returned in good condition. All debts must be paid. He must draw the attention of his comrades to any negligence in the matter of loans or debts, and correct their faults in a friendly way. He must seek drugs for patients. He must help those, who are in misfortune. He must constantly seek to develop the spirit of mutual aid in the population. He must devote his leisure to the fight against the illiteracy, a task to which he must devote all his forces. He must know that stupidity and lack of knowledge are allies of capitalism-imperialism. On the other hand knowledge allied to intelligence constitutes the power of the people!

The partisan mobilizes his comrades to help, during their leisure, the peasants working their rice fields and the workers occupied in their trades. He knows that economic well-being represents the most solid support in his fight. In short, no aspect of the life escapes his attention. Moreover, he pays all his debts and fulfils all his promises. The close spiritual links established between the partisan and the proletariat around him, will make the leadership given by the partisans of durable nature, and will not be able to be destroyed by adversaries or the enemy. If the partisan is obliged to leave for a more or less long period the place where he was stationed, he will always find a comrade on the spot who will be able to continue his task of leader of the people. If he has to be distant from this place for a longer period, he will have a powerful and devoted clandestine organisation. Thus, the hope and the work of his life will be carried out. A People able to organise their economic life themselves, and to produce always and everywhere leaders from their midst can never be conquered using tanks and of planes.

[1] Area of the island of Sumatra where there took place many Dutch colonial expeditions in the XIX and XX centuries.

[2] Fundamental territorial subdivision of the time of the Indies Dutch.

[3] Regulate tactical established by Foch during the last months of the world war 1914-1918. To discover the weak points on the broad front of the enemy, to attack constantly in many places.

[4] British troops of Hindu origin

[5] These massacres were carried out under the leadership of the adventurer Westerling, whom the Dutch government continues to protect in his travels across the globe. [There is no note 5 or reference to massacres that I can find in the text.]

[6] In addition, in chapter XV of his booklet, Tan Malakka defines the people’s army thus: “The People’s Army is an army made up of the whole people fighting for the interests and the ideals of the people. In the revolution, the task of the People’s Army consists of carrying out the program of the proletariat. The People’s Army is a revolutionary Army, i.e. an army having a revolutionary policy”.

[7] Of Quisling, used by the Dutch in the separatist States that they idiots-trusirent in the occupied territories Indonesian pure them.