Indonesia’s National Heroes Day is coming up on the 10th of November. Every year, this special date is celebrated to recall the heroic battle between Indonesian troops with the Allied Forces, led by the British Army. The battle is a symbol of Indonesia’s resistance and nationalism.
This special day is marked by a nationwide public holiday in Indonesia, with parades across the country. Historically, the intense battle happened in November 1945 in Surabaya, East Java. Are you interested to know some interesting facts about the National Heroes Day? Let’s find out!
5 Interesting Facts about National Heroes Day
Well, the battle that happened in Surabaya was a tactical loss to Indonesia. However, it was regarded as a strategic victory for the country. Below are some facts about the Heroes Day:
1. Battle of Surabaya
Long time ago, British troops landed in Surabaya as part of the Allies acceptance of Japan’s surrender. Their aim was also to recover their prisoners.
The peak of the battle happened in November 1945 in Surabaya, East Java. At that time, Indonesian youth unified to fight against the allies. They fought using weapons as well as bambu runcing, literally means ‘sharp bamboo’.
Thousands Indonesian soldiers died in the battle. That was the first battle after Indonesian independence and the most devastating ones that ever occurred in the country’s history.
2. Bung Tomo, a Revolutionary Leader
Bung Tomo played a central role in the Battle of Surabaya. He set up Radio Pemberontakan (Radio Rebellion), which promoted unity and fighting spirit among the youth. Every time he made a speech, he always used emotional and powerful words that had been successful in urging both civilians and soldiers to take actions.
3. A.W.S Mallaby Died
British Army officer Brigadier Gen. A.W. S Mallaby died on the evening of Oct. 30, 1945 in a skirmish line. This has caused strong tension and the British started to fight back. They began to attack the city from the air and the sea. It took the British three days to conquer half of the city. However, the battle lasted for about three weeks before they won the battle.
4. Lost, but Victory for Indonesia
Although Indonesia lost the battle, but 10th November was remembered as a victory for Indonesia. Why is that? Because it showed the courage and determination of Indonesian people, which earned respect from the Allied forces. The Allied forces was inspired by Indonesia’s struggle for independence and they began to show solidarity by refusing to join the battle.
5. Celebrated Every Year
Due to the importance of the Battle of Surabaya, every year, Indonesians people commemorate it every year by visiting some historic sites. In some places, you’ll also hear Indonesian patriotic songs being played. Televisions often aired nationalistic-theme films, advertisement and talk shows.
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