Shooting Balibo: Blood and Memory in East Timor

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9781743110133: Shooting Balibo: Blood and Memory in East Timor

When foreign correspondent Tony Maniaty goes back to Timor for the first time since he fled for his life thirty years before, he discovers a land of ghosts – some he left behind, and some he’s brought with him. He’s there to watch five young actors play out the last days of five friends of his – men who were murdered by the Indonesian army in one of the most infamous incidents (and cover-ups) in Australian foreign affairs. He’s also there to talk to some friends who survived – Gusmao, Ramos-Horta – people he knew as guerillas and who now run the country. When he arrives, past and present, fiction and fact begin to overlap...

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From the Back Cover:

In 1975, journalist Tony Maniaty flew into the Portuguese colony of East Timor looking for a war to film. He found it at a dusty outpost called Balibo.

Maniaty and his ABC News crew were shelled and five other television newsmen who followed were murdered by Indonesian troops. Maniaty reported the Balibo Five story, faced death threats and fled before the Indonesian forces invaded. The only foreign journalist left in the country was executed in cold blood. The generation-long nightmare of the East Timorese had begun.

In Shooting Balibo he teams up with the cast and crew of the feature film Balibo, retraces his days of danger, and dines with Jose Ramos-Horta as the independence-fighter-turned-President recovers from an assassination attempt.

But Maniaty's real purpose is to visit Balibo for the first time since 1975. When he steps into the burned-out house where his colleagues were slaughtered thirty-three years ago, past and present collide before his eyes.

About the Author:

Tony Maniaty is an award-winning author, journalist, and academic.

His acclaimed account of reporting the conflict in East Timor, Shooting Balibo (Penguin/Viking), has been described as 'a real coup' (Helen Garner), 'a brave and complex achievement' (David Malouf), and 'the best book yet on East Timor' (John Birmingham). Tony has also published two novels, The Children Must Dance (Penguin) and Smyrna (Penguin), which was short-listed for Australia's leading literary prize, the Miles Franklin Award. He has also written a memoir of his Greek-Australian boyhood, All Over The Shop (Penguin) and edited The Power of Speech: 25 Years of the National Press Club (Bantam).

Tony Maniaty has been awarded Senior Fellowships by the Australia Council for the Arts, and is the winner of the Martin Bequest for Literature, the New South Wales Premier's Writers Award and the National Short Story of the Year Award.

Tony Maniaty holds a PhD (Media) for his research into war correspondents' memoirs, and a Master of Arts (Media) degree for his research into television coverage of warfare from Vietnam to Iraq. His doctoral thesis was awarded the Macquarie University Vice-Chancellor's Commendation for Excellence. Tony is a member of the International News Safety Institute, PEN International, and the Australian Society of Authors.

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Tony Maniaty
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Maniaty, Tony/ Bower, Humphrey (Narrator)
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