The Indonesian Confrontation or Konfrontasi is a less known history among Malaysians but undeniably it was one of the most important historical events that happened just after the formation of Malaysia.
Tawau, in the Southeast Coast of North Borneo was the major frontline against the enemy. There was a huge military deployment near the old airport and troops from Britain and Australia were sent to Tawau to help protect the town and its borders. It was an “undeclared war” with Indonesia and plenty of lives were lost during this conflict.
An Australian military official named Collin Ross who served during the confrontation contacted a senior folk from Tawau called Mr Bryan Lai and contributed the declassified photos which were taken between 1963 and 1966. The photos were compiled into a YouTube video as shown below.
If you’re interested to learn more about this conflict, this article on Wikipedia is a good place to start.
Image courtesy Gus Breymann and YouTube video courtesy Bryan Lai