Indonesia during World War II (1942 - 1945) - The Japanese Occupation of the Dutch East Indies
[Indonesia] Japanese internment camps - World War II
Dutch King apologises to former colony Indonesia for mass killings during independence war
Indonesian War of Independence
Indonesia, Sumatra in 1940 before Japanese occupation
The Japanese Empire occupied the Dutch East Indies, now Indonesia, during World War II from March 1942 until after the end of the War in September 1945. The period was one of the most critical in Indonesian history. The Dutch East Indies had been a colony of the Netherlands since 1819. However, the Netherlands itself had been occupied by Germany, and thus had little ability to defend its colony against the Japanese army, and less than three months after the first attacks on Borneo, the Japanese navy and army overran Dutch and allied forces. Initially, most Indonesians joyfully welcomed the Japanese as liberators from their Dutch colonial masters. The sentiment changed, however, as Indonesians realized that they were expected to endure more hardship for the Japanese war effort. In 1944–1945, Allied troops largely bypassed Indonesia and did not fight their way into the most populous parts such as Java and Sumatra. As such, most of Indonesia was still under Japanese occupation at the time of its surrender in August 1945.