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416 Pages, 5.25 x 8.25

Trade Paper, $24.95 (US $24.95) (CA $27.95)

Publication Date: April 2010

ISBN 9781921372773

Rights: US & CA

Scribe Publications Pty Ltd. (Apr 2010)

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Featuring six additional chapters, this revised edition reveals the provocative story of one of the most shameful episodes in Australia's history, providing a firsthand account of the 1975 deaths of five young television reporters killed by the Indonesian military in the East Timor border town of Balibo. Chronicling how the reporters died as well as the eventual execution of a sixth reporter who attempted to investigate their fate, this gripping depiction also documents the personal narratives behind the families of the victims and their heartbreaking struggle for the truth. Contending that the Australian government was always aware of the circumstances of the killings, this argument maintains that their cover-up was a key factor in Indonesia's decision to invade and occupy East Timor. With a striking collection of photographs from its thrilling companion film, this searing recollection is as much an investigation of the Indonesian occupation of East Timor as it is a case study of the Balibo killings.


“In this detailed and compelling account, Jolliffe brings to the story a unique authority, as she has covered the Timor story for 26 years . . . The story of the families' years of unresolved grief, told here for the first time, is a shocking and disgraceful one . . . Jolliffe tells, at long last, the story the Balibo five obtained but were unable to report.” —Age “Ever since the invasion of Dili on December 7, 1975, when she was the last journalist to leave, Jolliffe has been meticulously assembling evidence of how the newsmen met their end, and who was responsible. This book brings all her evidence together. The centerpiece is the most comprehensive collection so far of interviews of East Timorese with links to the Balibo incident, which highlights the abundance of evidence available for the prosecution of those responsible . . . Interwoven with this extraordinarily detailed work are strands of a personal memoir.” —Sydney Morning Herald

Author Biography

Jill Jolliffe was working as a freelance correspondent for Reuters when in 1975 she witnessed the first incursions of Indonesian troops and reported the deaths of her five colleagues. She has followed and covered events in East Timor and other hot spots for the Age, the Guardian, the Sunday Times, the Sydney Morning Herald, and the BBC.