Friday, 17 September 2010

Adventures in Labour Party History No 1

The Battle for SURABAYA 1945-6

One of the many excellent points made by writer John Newslinger in his book ‘The Blood Never Dried’ is the selective editing out of unpleasant British Labour Party history in successive ‘histories’ of the party. One notable episode that appears to be systematically omitted is the battle for Surabaya (commemorated yearly in Indonesia) and essentially involving the heavy shelling of the city and bloody street battles against nationalist forces by British, Indian and co-opted Japanese troops in 1946

Establishing a scholarly tradition for the likes of Niall Ferguson the following books fail to note the episode:

Labour in Power (1945-1951) Keneth Morgan (1984)
Never Again: Britain 1945-1951 (Peter Hennessey (1972)
Clement Attlee Trevor Burridge (1985)
Clem Attlee Francis Beckett (1997)