KAOWAO NEWS NO. 110
Newsletter for social justice and freedom in Burma
May 10 - 25, 2006
fine for joining GONGOs
training course to start in the border town
Mons commemorate Honsawatoi Destruction Day
Joint-Statement on the 249th Fallen Day of
Hongsawatoi Mon Kingdom
villagers fled home after ambush by guerrilla
scare drags chicken prices down
Kyi's release won't harm Myanmar peace: police
calls for unity among Shans
Year Later: CFOB Urges Canada to Implement Burma Motion
against citizens in Burma
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On the Joint-Statement on the 249th Fallen
Day of Mon Kingdom
Thank you for letting us know about a joint-statement,
which gives us a great opportunity for us to learn the
true history of our Mon people and feel inspired by the
unity of Mon solidarity groups around the globe. Believe
that our movement is not just about one day of one year;
it is on going hard works on daily basis. Let's keep up
Min Thura Wynn (Canada)
Please include to stop military offensive and
demilitarization in ethnic indigenous areas. We got to
raise our voices by saying we don't want Burmese
military in our land since they never bring anything
good to local people , but only misfortune and
On the “20 migrants die in Andaman Sea at border
It is a tragic what happened to migrant workers coming
to Thailand. Extortion, arrest, deportation and death;
all risks are what they get despite to fulfill their
dreams come true. Who should be to blame for, the
migrant workers, the Thai governments or Burmese regime?
Break or fine for joining GONGOs
May 25, 2006)
Peace and Development Council in southern Mon State
recruits the local
population to join government-organized
NGOs or GONGOs by giving priorities.
Asar, a villager from the Khawza
sub-town of south Ye, said the Burmese Army convinced
villagers to apply as members of the
Union Solidarity and Development Association (USDA)
and the Women's
Affairs Organization (WAF).
Those who already
USDA members were given a
repairing the motor road along Ye-Khawzar while
non-members were forced to provide lumber for the wooden
bridges and stones to fill the soil of the motor road
before the rainy
season. Every household of non-USDA members
is required to provide a quota of one Kyinn measurement
(1 x 6 x 4 cubic feet) for the military junta's
The USDA Head of Mon State Brig-Gen Ohn Myint and CEC
Brig-Gen Thura Myint Maung met ECs and secretaries of the USDA
from state and township levels last year in Moulmein and
gave instruction on
to increase members.
Following the meeting, the BA in Mon State convinced
local villages to join the USDA and
were given special status in the community. A community
leader from Ye reported, the villagers who failed
to join the USDA
were ordered to work in the military run brick
Militia training course to start in the
May 23, 2006)
Sangkhalaburi -- Authorities at the Three Pagodas Pass
plan to recruit local militia by giving basic training,
according to a source.
A town resident close to the SPDC reported
SPDC is gathering about 100 trainees from members of the
Women's Affairs Organization and fire fighters.
The training will be sponsored by the
however, the authorities are finding it
difficult filling the
Among the proposed 100 trainees, about 25 will be fully
armed and trained to
work with the local police and the army.
The Burmese Army has formed local militia groups and
counter insurgent forces in Southern Mon State over the
The local militia groups are under the control of the
military command to act as a safeguard for the army and
the SPDC. Most of militiamen are retired soldiers from
the Burmese Army or local poor men who have no job to
feed their families. The Militiamen are given power to
execute villagers who oppose them and to collect force
labourers. The villagers are imposed to pay the salary
for the militia but they can arrest any suspect in the
community. The militiamen also guide the Burma Army
during its military operation.
to recruit the militias at the border town was upset by
its cease fire groups, the NMSP and the DKBA,
source from the border town.
Exiled Mons commemorate Honsawatoi
(Kun Yekha, Kaowao: May 20, 2006)
Mons in exile commemorated the
249th anniversary of the fall of Hongsawatoi Kingdom
(Pegu) by issuing statements, staging demonstrations and
holding memorial services.
Lanka, Mon Buddhist monks quietly held
the memorial ceremony by offering food in the temple
Canadian Society of Alberta organized a similar event by
reading poetry and telling the history to the younger
generation. Nai Khaing Waeng and Nai Cham Toik spoke to
the gathering about the current situation and the
history of the Mon kingdom on how it lost its properties
and valuable literature, with Mons being forced to
disperse and flee into Thailand in the 18th century.
In the USA, about 60 Mons from Indiana, Ohio and North
Carolina marched to the Burmese embassy in Washington
D.C on May 19, 2006 and staged a demonstration against
the Burmese regime for their inhumane acts of
and ethnic cleansing policies that the SPDC committed. Sadly,
these same crimes were committed by
their last blood-thirsty king, U Aung Zeya, 249 years
The group urged the SPDC to immediately stop the
practice of genocide and all forms of human rights
violations against the Mon and all other ethnic
nationalities and to withdraw its military forces
inhabited by these minority groups.
"This is unforgettable day, all Mon should be united to
fight for freedom" said Nai Michael Mon who organized
Mons in Fort Wayne made donations
and shared merit for those who passed away in Honsawatoi
The Mons in Akron, Ohio also paraded in traditional
dress in downtown for the memorial of the fallen day of
about thirty Mon people, paraded downtown
for two hours while reading
and distributing statements
to passers by. When they saw our white and red dress in
uniform, they waved
their hands in return,"
said Nai Parla who organized the event.
"The last Mon kingdom (Honsawatoi) was invaded by the
Burmese king in 1757. In the course of this occupation,
tens of thousands of innocent Mon civilians including
women, children and over 3000 learned Mon priests were
brutally massacred" as
mentioned in the joint-statement issued by exiled Mon
Thailand based Mon Unity League (MUL),
Youth Progressive Organization (MYPO) and the
Mon National League for Consolidation and Aiding (MNLCA)
also issued statements separately.
Burma's ethnic issues gained attention by the US
government after a Shan woman, Cham Tong, met with
Bush late last year. The Indiana state Congressman Mark
Sounder also said, "
US government won't forget the ethnic issue in Burma."
The current SPDC attack on the Karen people is
grave concern for the international community. The USA
will allow over 9000 Karen refugees to
immigrate to the United States
this year as a consequence of the SPDC's attack on the
Back home in Burma, while the teaching of
language is banned and all
cultural activity is restricted, the New Mon State Party
and Mon communities modestly commemorated the fall of
the Mon kingdom.
Joint-Statement on the 249th
Anniversary of the Fallen Day of Hongsawatoi Mon Kingdom
19 May 2006)
The Mon people are one of the oldest ethnic groups in
Burma. They lived in Hongsawatoi (Pegu) Mon kingdom
until it was invaded and occupied by the Burmese king,
Aung Zay Ya, in 1757. In the course of this occupation,
tens of thousands of innocent Mon civilians including
women, children and over 3000 learned Mon priests were
brutally massacred. Hundreds of thousands of Mon fled
to Thailand to escape genocide and ethnic cleansing.
Most historical records, including Mon manuscripts and
stone inscriptions, were destroyed.
Friday, 19 May 2006 is the 249th anniversary of the fall
of the Hongsawatoi Mon kingdom and the holocaust
memorial day of the Mon people. On this day we
celebrate our history, mourn the victims of genocide,
and pay tribute to those who sacrificed their lives
defending the Mon kingdom and the others who are still
fighting for the freedom of the Mon people.
Since the fall of Hongsawatoi Mon Kingdom, the once
immensely prosperous and highly civilized Mon have been
reduced to a people without a country. In Burma Mon
people are deprived of their fundamental human rights
and may not even teach and practice the Mon language.
The present military regime, the State Peace and
Development Council (SPDC), still pursues genocidal and
ethnic cleansing policies against the Mon and other
non-Burman ethnic nationalities in Burma. Such policies
have led to many human rights violations, including
rape, murder, imprisonment and forced portering. Since
1995, more than 700,000 refugees have fled to
neighbouring countries, over 2,700 villages were
destroyed, and thousands of acres of private land in the
Mon State have been confiscated by the military regime.
Currently the SPDC is launching military operations
against ethnic Karens, with over 12,000 innocent Karen
people forced to flee from their homeland.
The most important political goal of our Mon people is
to regain the fundamental right of self-determination
and recognition as a nationality within Burma. We are
committed to work in concert with other ethnic
nationalities and democratic forces in Burma for the
emergence and establishment of a genuine democratic
federal union, where all nationalities, including
Burman, will equally enjoy freedom and prosperity.
On this important day, we urge:
1. The Mon people everywhere to join together for the
struggle for Mon freedom;
2. The SPDC to immediately stop the practice of
genocide, ethnic cleansing, and all forms of human
rights violations against the Mon and all other ethnic
nationalities, and immediately withdraw its military
forces from the homeland of the Mon and other ethnic
3. The SPDC to immediately initiate a genuine tripartite
dialogue comprised of leaders of ethnic nationalities,
elected representatives, and military regime as
recommended by the United Nations;
4. The United Nations Security Council to immediately
take steps to stop the present genocide and ethnic
cleansing policies of the Burmese military regime.
This statement is joined by:
The Australia Mon Association (AMA)
Mon Canadian Society of Alberta
Mon Women's Association of America
Monland Restoration Council (MRC), USA
Mon National Students Organization (OMNSO),
More villagers fled home after ambush by
(Kaowao: May 14, 2006)
Sangkhalaburi – Villagers fled their homes after a
fighting between the Burma Army and Mon guerrilla group
broke out in Yebyu Township of southern Burma.
Nai Mya arriving from Khawza of southern Ye in Mon State
reported a clash between a guerrilla Mon group led by
Chan Dein and the Burma Army in early May but both sides
suffered no injury. The fighting lasted for 15 minutes
near Tamoh Kraing fishing village when 10 guerrillas
ambushed the combined column of 30 troops from Burma
Army’s Infantry Battalion No. 31 and 299.
As a result of the encounter, the Burma Army forced
villagers to build fences surrounding the village to
protect any entry of the Mon armed groups. The Burma
Army also accused local villagers as rebel supporters
and they were not allowed to go out in their farms.
Mon guerrilla Chan Dein is a former member of
Hongsawator Restoration Party (HRP) led by Colonel Pan
Nyunt who split away from the cease-fire New Mon State
Party in 2001.
Chan Dein later operates in his own group after
involving crimes against local population. He was in
the junta’s wanted rebel list last year in early 2005.
The Burma Army sold posters to local villagers in Ye
luring the civilian it will reward 10 million Kyats for
information leading to the capture of Mon guerrilla
leader Nai Bin. Anyone who can provide information
leading to the guerrilla’s whereabouts will be awarded
and Chan Dein has one million put on their heads.
The Burma Army continues military offensive to wipe out
the Mon armed group and the insurgents in turn use
ambush tactics and guerrilla warfare.
Bird flu scare drags chicken prices down
(Kaowao: May 10, 2006)
Chicken price in Mon State drops as a result of bird flu
scare according to sources from Moulmein.
A trader who just arrived to Thai-Burma border town said
many chickens from the outskirt area of Moulmein, Myaing
Tharyar and Taung Waing died during April and early
May. About 20 livestock farms had been shut down and;
as a result, the local people refrained themselves from
eating chicken products fearing the bird flu pandemic.
“There is no official report about the
threat of bird flu but rumour has that it has already
spread in upper Burma and the people in Mon State also
avoid buying chicken these days,” said Nai Mya from
Even though, the price of chicken is normally expensive
than the pork, the chicken price for one Viss is about
1800 Kyat compared to 3000 Kyat for pork in
the local meat market.
In March, the SPDC junta reported the first outbreak of
bird flu in poultry in central Burma, Mandalay.
Thousands of chicken in the capital city of Mon State
also died in the same month.
Suu Kyi's release won't harm Myanmar peace: police
(Reuters: May 24, 2006)
KUALA LUMPUR -- Myanmar's police chief said on Tuesday
the release of Aung San Suu Kyi from detention, if ever,
is unlikely to hurt peace in the military-run Southeast
Asian nation because of falling support for the
Police Major-General Khin Yi, attending a Southeast
Asian police chiefs' meeting in Kuala Lumpur, however
gave no hint when the Myanmar opposition leader would be
released from house arrest. "I think there will not be
rallies or riots in Myanmar if Suu Kyi is released," Yi
told reporters. "Our police force can handle everything.
There is peace and tranquility in Myanmar."
"I don't think there are a lot of supporters for her.
Some members of the NLD have resigned," Yi said,
referring to Suu Kyi's National League for Democracy
The police chief's comments came days after senior UN
official Ibrahim Gambari met Suu Kyi, her first contact
with an outsider in three years.
Gambari said after the landmark meeting on Saturday that
she was in good health, but added the meeting did not
mean her release was imminent. Speaking to reporters, Yi
also referred to the Suu Kyi-Gambari meeting, saying
that "things will be improved." He did not elaborate.
"I'm a police officer, not a politician."
Nobel peace laureate Suu Kyi, 60, has been in prison or
under house arrest for the last three years, her
telephone disconnected and all visitors barred apart
from her housemaid and doctor. Her meeting at a Yangon
guest house followed an audience between Gambari and
Than Shwe, the ruling military junta's supremo, where
the Nigerian envoy said he delivered a message from UN
Secretary General Kofi Annan.
Suu Kyi's brief trip to Gambari's government guest house
sparked immediate hopes inside her NLD party she might
be released soon. She has been under house arrest for
more than 10 of the last 16 years.
There is little to suggest, however, that the junta is
about to make up with Suu Kyi or her party, which won a
1990 election by a landslide only to be denied power by
Last month, the junta accused the NLD of having ties to
"terrorists and destructive groups" and said there were
grounds to have it banned. Since then, the party has
been hit by a spate of resignations, which the NLD
blames on pressure from the military rulers.
calls for unity among Shans
(S.H.A.N: May 20, 2006)
In a conciliatory tone apparently directing at his
archrival group, the "Interim Shan Government" (ISG),
Col Yawdserk, leader of the Shan State Army-South, has
urged all Shans to wipe the slate clean and start all
"To all who have sacrificed their lives or been
incapacitated during the course of the struggle for
freedom, I honor everyone of you, whether or not you are
from the same organization," begins the 49-year old
chairman of the Restoration Council of Shan State
(RCSS), the SSA South's political wing, in an address
marking the 48th anniversary of the Shan Resistance Day
that falls tomorrow.
"All of us want freedom," he continues. "And each one
knows there is only one way to achieve freedom and that
is through unity."
Finding fault with and slandering each other should be
avoided, he maintains. "If we keep on fighting one
another, neither will win and only our people will
lose," he says. "But unity will be there for us if we
love each other".
Unity however is not enough, he cautions. "We must adopt
a common policy and live under the same rules and
regulations. We also need to have a division of labor
with everyone working to the best of one's ability."
The rift between the two sides resulted from the
latter's formation of an interim government on 25 March
2005 behind a closed door meeting followed by its
declaration of independence on 17 April 2005. The
announcement made a week later by Lt-Col Moengzuen,
Commander of the SSA's 758th Brigade, of his switch to
the ISG only served to deepen the rift.
The SSA, on the other hand, achieved in pulling off its
own political coup by forming a Shan Representative
Committee (SRC) with 13 other Shan groups on 18 June
2005. The SRC's next move reportedly is to form a Shan
State representative body with non-Shan groups.
Shan resistance was launched in 1958 by 31 Shan youths
with a handful of guns on the border area opposite
Chiangmai. Renaming of 21 May as the Shan Armed Forces
Day or Shan State Army Day is not accepted by most
non-military activists, who argue the new name excludes
ordinary people who are also fighting for freedom. The
proper Shan State Army Day, they insist, should be 24
April (1964), when the SSA was formed under the
leadership of the late Mahadevi of Yawnghwe.
One Year Later: CFOB Urges Canada to Implement Burma
(CFOB: Ottawa, May 18, 06) – Today marks the one year
anniversary of the passage of the Burma Motion in
Canadian Parliament. On this occasion, Canadian Friends
of Burma (CFOB) is calling on the Government of Canada
to implement the Burma Motion in a timely manner and
with resolve, given the rapidly deteriorating situation
in Burma, including the recent attacks on civilians in
Karen State and the subsequent displacement of 15,000
people to the Thai-Burma border.
The Burma Motion calls for the possibility
of comprehensive economic sanctions, UN Security Council
intervention, and the provision of ‘tangible support’
for the Burmese democratic movement. One year after its
passage however, the Burma Motion has yet to be
“We call on the government to respect the will of
Parliament, as the majority of Canadian Parliamentarians
have already expressed their desire for stronger action
on Burma,” said Tin Maung Htoo, coordinator of CFOB.
The resolution was sponsored by Bloc Quebecois MP
Francine Lalonde and was adopted by Parliamentary
Standing Committee on Foreign Affair’s Subcommittee on
Human Rights in December of 2004. It was eventually
passed with a majority vote in the House of Commons on
May 18, 2005.
“The Conservative Party caucus played a key role in the
passage of this motion while in opposition, and it is
now high time for the motion to be put into action,”
urged Tin Maung Htoo.
Meanwhile the Conservative Government, which came into
power after winning the Jaunary 2006 federal election,
has informed CFOB that its “Burma policy is under
review.” Foreign Affairs Minister Peter McKay confirmed
this stance in a recent letter to CFOB, and the position
has also been reiterated by senior foreign affairs
officials on various occasions.
CFOB would like iterate clear that the implementation of
the resolution is long overdue and immediate action is
required; the dire situation in Burma right now calls
for a firm policy on Burma from the Conservative Party.
CFOB also calls on the Government of Canada to consider
the policy recommendations submitted to the
Conservatives, and to respond in kind.
Crimes against citizens in Burma
By Banya Hongsar, Canberra, May 2006
Burma’s military government, the State Peace and
Development Council (SPDC) has been committing crimes
against Burmese citizens for decades while the
democratic world leaders in the region including
Thailand, Malaysia, Singapore, as well as those in the
west the United States, United Kingdom, Canada, and
Australia have little courage to pressure the Burmese
military on respecting civil and political rights in the
country. Senior military officials have targeted
politicians, students, journalists, democratic
activists, including the innocent, children and rural
farming communities who sympathise with pro-democratic
forces and anti-government armed forces.
The SPDC is in a position now to further oppress and
punish anti-government forces in non-Burman States such
as Karen, Kayah, Kachin, Mon and Shan where non-Burman
democratic forces station their camps. The senior SPDC
officials have exploited the natural resources; gas,
mineral, fishery and timber, offering them to a cheaper
market to regional businessmen. Local villagers
especially women and children have fled to Thailand,
Bangladesh and India for safety and security. Millions
of people have fled their homes for fear of persecution
and detention for supporting democratic forces and the
ethnic political forces in the country.
The SPDC’s key policy on Burmainsation or
nationalisation in the entire country is at the top of
the military’s agenda soon after the military moved the
capital from Rangoon to Pyinmana.
The military government has three goals: to terminate
and destroy all political forces in the country. The
first and foremost is extending its militarisation
program into the non-Burman States, the second is
pursing border and regional development at the cost of
the lives of the local population; and the third is
taking on an ever more aggressive role in confronting
the democratic political parties led by the National
League for Democracy.
Expanding militarisation in the border areas and into
the heart of non-Burman State has been increased in the
last ten years, soon after the Mon National Liberation
Army and its political wing, the New Mon State Party
reached a cease-fire agreement in 1995 with the military
Government regiments have been stationed and its camps
built in Ye, Thanphyuzayat, and Mudon Townships in
almost every corner of Mon State. One of the worst cases
was an unreasonable attack on local villagers in Mudon
Township who were accused as co-conspirators in the gas
pipeline explosion in March this year. Seven men and one
woman were arrested in Mudon Township without trail and
held for 30 days.
Local members of New Mon State Party were put under
arrest. This act demonstrated fully that the
peace-partners have no voice in protecting the welfare
of the local villagers when it comes under illegal and
unlawful arrest by the military government. The SPDC’s
soldiers moved the whole village to non-productive land
in the middle of Burma away from the gas pipeline.
According to local news reports from the Independent Mon
News Agency, unknown groups attacked the gas pipeline
explosion, while the government security forces, looking
for a scapegoat, accused the Mon National Liberation
Army. None of the local non-government troop such as
Karen National Liberation Army, Democratic Karen
Buddhist Army and other armed groups claimed
responsibility for the explosion while pro-democratic
activists were detailed in yet another un-known plot
against the democratic forces.
After the increase of government troops in Mon and Karen
States in recent years, the role of civil society has
diminished. Children are forced to work in government
sponsored construction sites including working on road
repairs and putting up school fencing in all the
villages. Local Buddhist monks are forced to return
their vehicles after they were accused of purchasing
them without government consent. Students from Moulmein
and elsewhere in Mon State are forced off of their
campus to rent privately in hostels exposing them to
drugs and unsafe-sex practices in the city.
On the question of border and regional development, the
military regime uses its power and strict law against
the local business people including the cease-fire
groups to make deals on importing, transporting and
exporting goods from Burma to neighbouring countries. A
few bridges, road and power generations have been built
in Mon and Karen State after their appeasement
propaganda campaign to the local anti-government groups
to abide by their “modernisation of Burma”.
Local vehicle owners and landowners are forced to pay
heavy taxes (illegal taxation) to local government
troops. All road users are made to pay cash to security
checkpoints to pay for government projects in
contradiction to the cease-fire deals between the
government and non-government troops. Regional and
border development programs have no time frame and there
is no planning with the wider community. No one knows
where to and how much of the military government’s
budget is allocated to the regional commanders coffers
for its operation.
Local villagers regardless of their income are forced to
pay for the welfare of the local government troops.
Roughly 60% of Mon population is relied on to provide
income to soldiers, many have to therefore for illegal
employment in Thailand, Malaysia and Singapore. There is
no secure income in the town except for paddy growing
and rubber plantation. Public servants have been engaged
in corruption for the welfare of their children and have
no other options available to them.
The construction of the longest bridge in Burma is an
example of how the military government exploits the
local people to support its government projects and
budget, indeed, the cash flow from gas exports to
Thailand from Yadana Gas operation since 1994 goes
toward military expenditures, not any development
projects which it is loath to support. If the regional
and border development programs were a success in Mon
State, the number of illegal migrants workers who cross
the Thai-Burma border daily would have decreased in the
last three-five years significantly to enjoy the fruits
of development. Alas, the majority of young people who
enter Thailand do so for safety and job security reasons
where they have a taste of freedom for the first time in
After ten years the so-called peace partnership with the
military government, the Mon political party (NMSP) has
lost its legitimate voice to protect their people’s
human rights. Why should they when the military
government can confiscate land at a whim as they have
done so in taking over 10,000 acres of fertile land?
Prominent political leaders are detained frequently and
local social and cultural groups are under close
scrutiny by spy networks.
The urban-based Mon political party, the Mon National
Democratic Front (MNDF) is now under growing pressure by
the military officials to abandon its legal position
from the 1990 General Election that was banned by
authorities in 1992. The National League for Democracy
is the third political force in Mon State with mixed
support from local Mon and Burmese in central Moulmein
district who now face similar circumstances. The NLD is
also banned to reopen its office in major towns without
permission from the local hierarchy of the commanders in
At the cost of citizens’ human rights, the military
officials have enforced various laws in the country
banning the role and efficiency of local civil society
groups in non-Burman States to help their people. The
Mon people in Rangoon, Pegu and Molumein are banned to
celebrate their annual National Day in public while they
are forced to celebrate a government cultural and social
event in a small hall within the confines of a spy
network. Mon musicians are banned to produce their own
DVD’s and VCD’s in their own language unless the whole
texts are translated into Burmese language including
There has never been any evidence that the military
officials will ever introduce democratic reforms. The
role of civil society is their enemy; the local
population have no voice to find a common consensus in
implementing community development projects in health
and education. Government schools are built by local
cash collection in which ethnic villagers have to give
up their own schools and support the Burman government
run schools. Local communities have to yield to local
commanders and senior military officials through force
on opening day of the school, while retired and backward
thinking military personnel accept all the credit in
building them. No community radio or an independent
media is allowed to operate in the country despite the
SPDC military government’s claims of following a road
map to democracy.
These are challenges for regional and western democratic
leaders and UN agencies for promoting a democratic
government in Burma. Mon State was created in 1974 under
a new socialist led government but no executive power
was allowed to form by local Mon political parties. Over
3-4 million Mon people are seeking a common ground to
find free space in Burma under a strong leadership to
bring them into the 21st century. But all
solutions are stomped on by the dictatorship.
The minorities such as Karen and Mon have lived in close
proximity for a few centuries, with the Mon living in
this part of world for over a thousand years—the Karen
people in this part of Southeast Asia—but both parties
lack mutual trust in building a democratic institution
in southern Burma where they can share land and
The local political forces including social and cultural
groups have the ability to change and introduce modern
democratic institutions in the country in which they are
in position to prove to the world that they are
competent in managing local issues on health, education,
employment and economy including the welfare of its own
population. But five decades of the long military led
government in Burma has failed to undertake its
legitimate role on the governance of the ethnic
communities in which all parties can work together. The
military government is only concerned with dominating
the non-Burman ethnic nationalities and establishing its
superiority over the entire country.
The big question is whether Burma is best suited for a
democratic institution. Federalism or a country made up
of the non-Burman, independent ethnic states. For
long-term security and stability in the region, it would
be best to grant independence to the ethnic peoples, for
the short term to establish a federation over a 20-30
Will the SPDC military government ever take full
responsibility for those who have committed human rights
violations against innocent people? Crimes against
humanity by the state have been common practices in the
country for many years. The thinking of the Burmese
government is the result of centuries of exploitation
and dominance. Forward thinking people are jailed for
their political opinions, women are raped by its
government soldiers, and children in forced labour are
all accepted norms, what are the circumstances that will
change their thinking?