Tuesday, 29 April 2008

The Dili Weekly

Go get ‘em Jesse, you Rottweiller you.

Also from The Dili Weekly a couple of great headlines:

Flooded river takes pigs, chickens, sandals

Buses, motorbikes to go to schools
(God knows we need better educated buses and motorbikes).


Mea Culpa

In the current climate of forgiveness and “least said, soonest mended” I have decided to offer an amnesty AND a pardon to the poor misguided armed chaps who burgled my house on December 24th. I realise now that the only way forward is to suffer from a selective amnesia and forget all about justice.
So chaps, I hope you spent the money you stole on alcohol, drugs and loose women and didn’t just squander it. I hope the booze you stole didn’t give you all too big a hang over. That you and yours wear the cloth’s you stole with pride, after having used the iron you stole to make sure they look nice. That the tools, flash-lights, binoculars etc were all up to standard and suited your needs. That you got a good price for these items when you sold them in the Comoro market.
Also in this spirit of “a new beginning” I have put all my old locks back in place so that the keys you stole will now gain you unlimited access to my house so you won’t have to drug the dogs to get in.
I also hope that when/if you are arrested (ha!) you refer to the amnesty given to Rogerio Lobato and 80 other convicted criminals and basically say “If it’s alright for them it should be alright for us”.
Maybe we can arrange a “dialogue” or a “workshop” or a “consultation” to resolve any issues we may have. Myself and a few of my mates would love to have a “dialogue” with you so that we can all see the error of our ways.

Talking Of Which
A very nice PNTL officer who is in charge of my burglary case came round the other day with some ID photo’s of guys he suspects may have been involved. He asked me if I recognised any of them and had I seen them hanging around the house on the day in question. After perusing the pictures I had to tell him that I didn’t in fact recognise anyone. This was due to the black-eyes, bleeding noses and general bruising that would have made it hard for their mothers to know them. I gently suggested to the police officer that maybe they should take the ID photo’s before they give the suspects a bashing. He took this on board and said it was a very good idea.
Another triumph for public/police relations.


Stop Press - Traffic News

Dili residents may want to avoid the Comoro Road today around noon as I expect the usual traffic chaos to be even worse. Apparently Mr. Salsinha and some chums will be arriving in Dili around this time. Expect very fast convoys, gun-toting Rambo lookalikes and lots of sirens and flashing lights.
You read it here first folks....


Friday, 25 April 2008

Burying the Lead

Oh yeah, I forgot something.
It's now 1355 Dili time and Salsinha is in Gleno negotiating his surrender with various bodies. The PNTL and F-FDTL are up there too. Why the fuck they don't just stick a gun to his head and arrest him I don't know. You read it here first folks.


It All Makes Sense Now

You know, I think we may have got it all wrong. After my initial disgust, anger and abject disappointment over the Presidential ‘amnesty’ for Rogerio Lobato and 80 other convicted criminals I was too upset to write anything about it because I thought that I might be a bit too vitriolic. Now I’ve had time to calm down and consider the Presidents kind offer I realise we probably all got it wrong in the first place.
Ex Interior Minister Lobato was completely misquoted in the original investigation. He did not in fact say “Kill them all, kill them all”. In keeping with his devout socialist/Fretilin principles he actually said “Kill the mall, kill the mall”. As some of you may remember the LANDMARK supermarket/mall was in the process of being opened at the time and I believe that convicted criminal ex Minister Lobato was actually trying to save East Timor from the evils of capitalist consumerism. Good for him. Convicted due to a simple typographical error. Disgraceful. I hope all of Dili turns out for his return as we did for Ramos Horta last week. Welcome back Rogerio, your country needs you. I also hope Fretilin ignores the fact that he is a convicted criminal and offers him High Office within the party machine. I’m sure they will.

"Kill the mall, kill the mall" - The offending mall

Of course, if you are a Dili truck driver you might not be so happy to see the return of this gun-toting (allegedly) pistol-whipping (supposedly) thug (definitely). I know I wouldn’t.


Monday, 21 April 2008

More Odds 'N Sods

I’ve decided I’m going to swear a bit more on this blog. I think it needs it.

Heard Down The Pub Yesterday
"Mate, can you take your grenade out of the car before we go in the pub?"

Also Down The Pub (To the tune of 'Hello Muddah, Hello Fadah')
Hello Hector
How’s it going?
How they hanging?
What you knowing?

Goodbyeeeeee Tobias. You will be missed. But then I’ve always said that about you.

The Other Side Of The Coin
I know occasionally I might seem to be slightly unsympathetic to various members of the PNTL, F-FDTL, GNR etc. etc. so here is a little story to put things into balance.
The other night down my local watering hole two of the staff, both Timorese, one male and the other female had an absolutely huge blue. Obscene words were shouted, blows were exchanged and many tears were shed. The fight was very very loud and went on for a long time. The female side of the fight wanted to call in the police and her husband so things could have gone quite bad for the male side. The police (five PNTL) rocked up as did the husband. Very tense situation. Two PNTL officers sat down with the fighters and the husband and talked very calmly and at length with the offended parties. After a long and non-acrimonious discussion the PNTL sorted everything very nicely. Nobody was arrested, nobody was hit and the cops remained calm and friendly during the whole thing. So, slap my wrists and wash my mouth out with soap if I say anything bad about any of the security organizations in the future. Well, for the next day or two anyway.

Eight hundred thousand dollars eh? I might apply to be a Major in the F-FDTL if that’s how good the wages are.

If you see this car driving around Dili (check the licence plate), stay well clear because the driver is a fucking menace. And to think he is carrying a loaded weapon as well.

Prince Albert
Apart from some very dodgy genital piercing what has Prince Albert ever done for us eh?


Thursday, 17 April 2008

I'll Be Back!

Well, what a great day it’s been. The return of JRH and the weather isn’t bad either.
Up at the airport at 0700 for the big day. Got there and the place was virtually empty. Handed over some ID and got a piece of plastic that allowed us entry to the airport. Nothing much has changed at the airport really, it was hot, crowded, smelly and very very boring. So I left and went outside to see what was happening. In about 30 minutes the place had changed. There were now at least 5000 people outside, cars and 4WD’s everywhere and a few weapons and very loud whistles as well.
JRH gave a press conference at which he was quite (understandably) emotional. It seemed he didn’t like the SBS documentary last night. Everyone’s a bloody TV critic nowadays. As one colleague said, ‘JRH looked frail but tense, which could be a metaphor for the country really’. You read it here first!
So, airport done, race off to the Pres. Res. for pictures of the Man returning to the scene of the crime. Very very emotional. Lots of people there, marching bands, local costumes, PNTL and GNR being very brave (and about 9 weeks late) and the Man himself walking from the T-junction up to his house. It must have been quite traumatic for him, seeing the site where he was gunned down for the first time and having to listen to the crap music at the same time. A TV mate got a couple of hits from the GNR and the PNTL which JRH witnessed and apologized for. Personally, I know why the GNR guy hit him. The GNR chap was (typically) about 5foot 2inches tall whereas the TV cameraman is around the 9foot mark. A classic case of ‘Napoleon syndrome’ I think. Plus we were very near the ‘Caz Bar’ so the GNR testosterone level must have been quite high.
I’ll leave it there now with a couple of extra comments.

I’ve noticed that the road from Pig Bridge to JRH’s place is now called “Avenue April 17th”. Fair enough. But it took less than 6 days to create “Avenue April 17th” so why the fuck couldn’t it have been done in the previous 6 years? Obviously the labour, money and incentive have been available, so why hasn’t somebody asked the present and past Minister’s in charge of roads what the hell they have been doing since May 20th 2002?
I also think we should leave JRH alone for a while to let him recover, get over the emotional shock of returning to the place where he was gunned down and also let him consolidate his position a bit now he has been re-sworn as Prez.
I reckon we might be looking forward to a couple of ‘interesting’ months on the East Timorese political scene. Let’s hope so.

Running shoes from east and west East Timor wait to greet the President.

A normal sized chap about to get a slap from 3 short-arsed bastards

Looking good Mr. President


(or rather, they didn't miss)

Tuesday, 15 April 2008

Bits N Pieces

JRH returns on Thursday from Darwin. I would imagine there will be very large crowds at the airport and on the road to his house to welcome him back. I hope he appreciates the work that has gone on between Pig Bridge and his house. It took me 45minutes on Saturday morning to get from the bridge to the JRH turnoff. Good job nobody needed an ambulance this time!

A couple of things have caught my eye recently:
Government to buy warships – Suara Timor Lorosae
The State Secretary for Defence, Julio Thomas Pinto, said the Government has decided to buy warships for the F-FDTL Navy to control illegal fishing activities in the coastal area of Timor-Leste."The Government through the department of Defence has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with a Chinese company, Poly Technology, to start ship construction for F-FDTL," said Mr. Pinto after signing the MOU on Saturday (12/4) in the Government Palace, Dili.Mr. Pinto also said that the construction will be started next month and will finish in the following year."Once the MOU is implemented, 30 F-FDTL members will receive training from Chinese shipping companies in China," added Mr. Pinto. (STL)

Klemm: The 'State of Siege and State of Emergency' are the right ways to solve the problems รข€“ Diario Nacional
The American Ambassador to Timor-Leste, Hans Klemm, said that the Government of Timor-Leste has shown a great patience during the implementation of the 'State of Siege' and 'State of Emergency'."I hope that through the 'State of Siege' and 'State of Emergency', Salsinha and his men will surrender themselves peacefully to justice so that their problems will be sorted out as quickly as possible," Ambassador Klemm said.
My understanding of international diplomacy is that if you do not like a country you are stationed in the surest way to get a transfer is to meddle in internal politics.

The Dili Weekly has done it again with a couple of great headlines:

Small, old Indonesian flag in mango tree causes stir.
Despite state of siege district life continues as normal, except for odd kidnapping in Maubisse.

The editorial by Jesse Wright is also spot on, again.


Tuesday, 1 April 2008

Random Stuff

Well, I just got my copy of The Dili Weekly and once again it was well worth the wait.
Headline of the week, page 2, has to be: Catholics Celebrate Easter. Well they would wouldn't they.
The editorials are consistently superb although I think the combination of large cojones and decent brains could be a dangerous thing. I suspect there are some people out there who are already thinking of trying to get the paper closed down. Again, I’d say to anyone living and/or working in Dili, get advertising with The Dili Weekly. The more money they receive, the stronger they will be.
They also have an item called ‘Police blotter’ which is a round-up of the arrests and
incidents of the previous week. This week they had to have a ‘rider’ which stated the
following: “
The Dili Weekly asks that people realize the national police, from whom the
newspaper gets its daily reports, say they have been too busy to meet with our journalists
to give us reports. They say they are totally occupied in the hunt for Salsinha
I was wondering if it might be a good idea for the UN or some other body to assist the
PNTL and the f-FDTL by teaching them about media relations. And maybe throw in a
dedicated pro-bono human rights advisor while they are at it.

Talking of Salsinha, I suspect the guy is waiting until JRH is back in the country before giving himself up. I also suspect the JOC suspect/know this. We’ll see.

Apparently the town of Liquica is going to do it’s bit to promote religious tourism.
People there have come up with the scheme of ‘persecution parties’.
Realistic burning of witches is being mooted to promote an influx of religious tourists.
It will be a little like the Fatima procession only hotter.
Liquica residents are fully behind the idea and see it as an economic boon.
Father Jose Quintas dos Santos Ximenes O’Toole said today (1/4/08) “I believe
Our Lord would look upon this action as a devout way to bring money to the community.
Only we in Liquica would have thought of this idea. We are very proud”.
Loron Bosokteen.