Bali War Memorial

  • i gusti ngurah rai

To commemorate the landing operations April - July 1946. On the easternmost tip of Java, in and around the town of Banyuwangi, republican troops of the army, police and navy were on the alert. Most of them were young, many even in their teens, but well trained and possessed of very high morale. When new was received of the critical situation in Bali, joint landing operations were designed involving three contingents, each under of command of respectively captain Waroka (of the Marines), Lieutenant Colonel I Gusti Ngurah Rai (of the Army) and Captain Markadi (also of the marines). D-day was determined on 3 April 1946. At midnight under cover darkness Warokas and Ngurah Rais troops boarded a large number of outrigger canoes and fishing boats, the only types of "warships" of the republic at that time, and sailed across the narrow Bali straits with its notoriously strong current. Waroka headed north and landed on the north coast of Bali where as Ngurah Rai sailed south-east and landed on the south coast but only after he had lost two of his men who were hit by Dutch bullets.

Likewise, Markadis troops consisting of four platoons crossed the Bali straits on three fishing boats. At daybreak the next day, two of the fishing boats were still of the coast of Bali as the wind -the only source of power suddenly died. Then out of the morning mist appeared a Dutch patrol boat. A sea battle ensued, the very first sea battle in the annals of the young republic. Another enemy patrol boat steamed full-speed to rescue the first, which was burning, but was kept at bay by heavy machine-gun fire. The two enemy boats finally fled, and the burning one was afterward seen sinking. Markadi was in the command during the battle, and his victory over the enemy was just a near miracle. He lost only two men. He then decided to sail as quickly as the wind which had come to life again-could push his boat back to Banyuwangi, where he arrived just on time to evade the fury of an enemy warplane sighted in the distance. The following night, Markadi and his men made a successful landing on the southwest coast of Bali.

The operation went on unabated. Then, on2 July 1946, very early in the morning, a relatively large Republican contingent consisting of units various armed organizations with the remaining unit of Markadis marines as core, landed on the shore of West Bali after crossing the Bali strait under cover of darkness. This time the enemy did not meet the Indonesian troops at sea, but awaited them on shore. A fierce battle erupted. With the sea behind them, there was no choice for the Indonesian troops but the surge forward despite heavy enemy fire. Many feel. Those who survived went up the hills to join the units that had landed earlier.

Guerrilla warfare against the Dutch occupying forces was waged all over Bali by the republican troops together with the people of Bali until the independence of Indonesia was internationally recognized at the end of 1949. On commemoration of the landing operations of April to July 1946, in which many freedom fighter lost their lives, this War Memorial was dedicated on 4 April 1988.