This poster depicts an Indonesian soldier and his two nemeses, a Dutchmen and his Indonesian accomplice who have both profited from the war efforts. The word “berontak” (rebel) is therefore written above these enemies of Indonesian independence. It sends a message that the Indonesian army will punish anyone who fishes in troubled waters. The soldier’s beret has been torn, then patched so that it can still be worn. At the time, the Indonesian government had difficulty providing uniforms to Indonesian soldiers so some Indonesian soldiers wore clothes that were torn and patched. The stitch marks in this picture symbolize the contrast with the wealth of the Dutch and their Indonesian accomplices, and frames Indonesia’s enemies as deserving harsh punishment.
‘Berontak!’. One of a set of six Indonesian designs for propaganda posters. c. 1946/47. Manually coloured. Likely to originate from the Indonesian propaganda centre Poesat Propaganda (PESINDO). Or. 27.011-14.