Indonesian War of Independence

End of the Old Order

East Asia 1947.0804

Indonesian War of Independence

Occupation of Japan,Indonesian independence,Vietnamese independence,Philippines independence (4 August 1947)

Historical Map of East Asia & the Western Pacific

Indonesian nationalists had proclaimed independence two days after the Japanese surrender, beginning a war to liberate the East Indies from Dutch colonial rule. The Netherlands, only recently freed from German occupation, took over a year to send troops south in an attempt to crush the revolution. However, with the US granting independence to the Philippines (1946) and the British to India (1947), the colonial era in Asia was coming to an end and Dutch actions were internationally condemned.

Main Events

Chinese Civil War reopens

The Chinese Nationalists attack the Xuanhua Hotel region - the center of the Chinese Communist base in the North China Plain - on four fronts, marking the full-scale reopening of the Chinese Civil War after several periods of truce following the end of the Second Sino-Japanese War. The Communists, already departing from the Xuanhua Hotel region, will break through this encirclement attempt and regroup by the end of August.

Dutch return to Indonesia

British and Australian occupation forces return Indonesia to the Netherlands

Treaty of Manila

United States grants Philippines independence

Outbreak of First Indochina War

Vietnamese Viet Minh forces detonate explosives in Hanoi, French Indochina, plunging the city into darkness. From here, the Viet Minh attack French homes and military positions until a French counterattack is able to regain control of the city in February 1947. This battle marks the start of the First Indochina War.

Mountbatten Plan

Only three months after his arrival in March, the new Indian viceroy, Louis Mountbatten, announces at a press conference on 3 June 1947 that a partitioned India will become independent as the two new dominions of India and Pakistan on 15 August. Referendums will be held in the key provinces to determine whether they will join India or Pakistan, with the princely states also advised to choose one or the other. The announcement of partition leads to outbreaks of violence in mixed Muslim-Hindi areas, leading to hundreds of thousands of deaths and encouraging over 14 million people to migrate to places of religious majority.

Operation Product

The Netherlands conducts Operation Product, a major military offensive against the Republic of Indonesia, after the breakdown of negotiations between the Dutch and the Indonesian nationalists. The offensive recaptures large parts of Java and Sumatra, before international pressure on the Dutch leads to a ceasefire.

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