The ruling junta in the face of the “Burmese revolution”

To analyse. Burmese putschist general Min Aung Hlaing’s “disinvitation” from the series of summits of leaders of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (Asean) scheduled for October 26-28 sent a strong signal on the seriousness of the crisis. situation in Burma.

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And for good reason: the region faces the prospect of a failed state that tilts towards civil war, which is a persistent epidemic center and will generate an increasing number of refugees and trafficking. The collapse of the Burmese economy increases the flow of candidates for migration, legal and illegal, for which Thailand is the main destination. It will push, thanks to the growing chaos, the territories controlled for a long time by “armed ethnic organizations”, such as the Kachin or Karen guerrillas, or under the cut of pro-junta militias, to reconnect with the trafficking they were struggling with. already to be discarded: raw materials, wood, drugs… These regions are also the main suppliers of weapons for the resistance.

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The prospect, with the dry season beginning, of a large-scale offensive by the Tatmadaw (the Burmese armed forces) against the armed insurgency adds to the urgency. On Friday, October 29, military forces advancing in Chin State, in the northwest, near the Indian border, set fire to the town of Thantlang, 30 kilometers from the capital, Hakha. Most residents fled, but the church and around 250 buildings were reportedly destroyed.

The Tatmadaw, which wants to regain control over the hotbeds of resistance that have appeared in long-standing pacified regions (the Chin state but also the Bamar-majority regions of Sagaing and Magwe), begins with the most vulnerable of them: Chin State, populated by Chin ethnic groups, mostly Christians, is one of the poorest in Burma. The tactics deployed by the Burmese army “Are a sinister reminder of those employed by the army before its genocidal attacks against the Rohingya [en 2016 et 2017] ». We can expect even more atrocities on a large scale ”, warned, on October 22 at the United Nations General Assembly in New York, the special rapporteur on human rights, Tom Andrews.

Fail the putsch

Of course, we cannot blame the Burmese, from whom the democratic transition and then the 2020 elections were confiscated, for taking up arms in the face of this army which has continued to bully them since the first coup in 1962. Burmese, moreover, speak of a “revolution”: it is not only a question of defeating the putsch of 1is February, but ultimately to bring the army back to the barracks and to re-found the pact of “living together” between the Bamar majority and the ethnic groups.

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The ruling junta in the face of the “Burmese revolution”