As the west pines away at all the progress Burma has achieved in forging a path to democracy the Kachin people and their continued conflict goes under reported or ignored completely. The war is very real and innocent civilians are being murdered by Burmese junta thugs yet the west pretends the war does not exist. Presently in Ruili, China peace negotiations have begun between Burma and the Kachin Independence Organization for a war the west shamefully ignores.
Being ignored by the west is a fact of life for this proud and independent people but fortunately *China provided a neutral place for the two warring parties to meet. Unfortunately the indignation does not stop with western ambivalence since the Military Junta of Burma sent General U Aung Thaung, ret., a long time crony of General Than Shwe, to broker a peace accord with Kachin representative Sumlut Gam. Thaung is also one of the masterminds behind the Aung San Suu Kyi assassination attempt and the bloody Depayin massacre of May 2003. In reality U Aung Thaung should be facing charges of Crimes Against Humanity for the blood letting he is accountable for as well as the Depayin Massacre.
The insincerity of the Junta’s peace process is all too apparent since war continues to wage in Kachin State. In spite of numerous calls for ceasefire by the impotent President Then Sein the Tatmadaw has forged foreword shelling civilian sites and levelling infrastructure. And it is clear General Than Shwe is still at the helm of the military wing of this fraudulent ‘civilian’ government. Interestingly enough is the fact Aung Thaung was one of the generals Than Shwe ordered to retire and form the Union Solidarity Development Party. Actually the USDP was earlier known as the Union Solidarity Development Association known as a band of thugs who tortured and murdered many Burmese citizens. Thaung simply dropped the “Association” and added “Party” when preparing for the shame election of 2010. It’s the same band of criminals, just legitimized by the western media and eager corporate interests.
Then there is the issue of the bogus Constitutional Referendum of 2008 that laid the foundation of the sham presidential election 2010. The Kachin will not honour a lie therefore they are petitioning for peace through the United Nationalities Federal Council, a legitimate organization of ethnic groups. The western world must realize the 2008 ballot initiative was a complete fraud that violated even Than Shwe’s laws and was a total contradiction that painted the military junta as ‘civilian’. Carefully timed prisoner releases also coincided with acts of genocide; while prisoners were being released in a carnival like atmosphere drawing world media attention, the junta was murdering ethnics in offensives at the same time. Such is the case with the Kachin People; the junta is acting ‘civilian’ to the world while accomplishing genocidal and military and objectives in the background. Peace negotiations being conducted in China already face many obstacles because the junta continues to shell villages, townships, shooting and raping civilians as they advance in this humanitarian crisis. And the world says nothing, so much for civil society.
Since the beginning of Than Shwe’s latest offensive back in June of 2011 over 60,000 people have been displaced by junta bombs and ruthless soldiers who terrorize this ethnic people. With refugee centres filled to capacity and meager supplies to sustain them this is an epic humanitarian disaster unto itself. Eager to exploit the resources in Kachin State the world does nothing to help these people effectively turning their backs to the cries of innocent men, women and children. The world has blood on their hands for allowing this onslaught to continue unabated. Personally I can’t consciously sit by and say nothing because this hits at the core of my persona. I am compelled to stand with the Kachin.
An old Kachin man told me a story of Shan Hoi Gam, a tale about the eldest of seven brothers who, according to folklore, was the ancestor of the “Red Indian’s” of the America’s. I found it heartening to discover a culture of people who would claim my culture as their descendants. Their traditional art work bore a striking resemblance to ours. Now I find an uncanny connection with their plight and the struggle of my people in the face of all adversity. The world sits by and does nothing while innocent people are murdered in a barbaric re-enactment of the Holocaust or Wounded Knee. I say; “Not on my shift”, and if there is any spark of humanity left in the world they should stand with me and the Kachin, lock stock and tomahawk and say;
“STOP THE GENOCIDE IN KACHIN STATE!”
Your Devil’s Advocate