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Review and Analysis of Suu Kyi’s Speech

Wynston Lawrence
RB Analysis
October 12, 2017

Suu has spoken on Myanmar National TV channel on 12 October 2017. She would like to tell her fellows Burmese people how her government is going to confront challenges of Rohingya Crisis. This crisis has gained world attentions with terrible comments from international community. Some has described as Genocide and other used as “Textbook example of Ethnic Cleansing. No matter what they names, these are great crimes under International Laws. Suu has spoken twice on 9/19 and today 10/12. For 9/19 speech, she has been condemned by critics because she failed to criticize violence such as killings, raping, burning houses committed by brutal Burmese Army and Rakhine Buddhists extremist. Some accused her as an apologist for Ethnic Cleansing, Genocide and mass rapes. Today she spoke in Burmese and I will use an official translation of her ministerial government. This translation has been released on official Facebook page of Myanmar State Counsellor Office. But I will include some words in original translation with bracket to free misunderstanding in the community of English language speaking. 

ASSK: ((Report to the (Burmese) People By State Counsellor Daw Aung San Suu Kyi))

WL: ((She has today spoken for mainly Burmese audiences and reporting for Rohingya Crisis.))

ASSK: ((May all the (Burmese) people be in good health and well-being. May peace be in your hearts. First of all, let me tell you how grateful I am, for standing together with our government, with full understanding and unity, at a time when we are facing extreme challenges. There is no power which can compare with the support of the people, trust of the people and the unity of the people. I believe that no matter whatever difficulties we face, we can overcome, with the unity of our people.))

WL: ((She is expressing gratitude to the Burmese people because there has recently a lot of gatherings in Burma for supporting Aung San Suu Kyi and its government, sometimes they support even Burmese Army. I am not sure why are they supporting Suu Kyi but I think they want to show the world that they are standing with Suu Kyi for whatever she does. Suu acknowledged that she is facing with extreme challenges. I want to point out that if she believe in her own people’s support is so crucial for her, why did she cry out for international supports when she has been defeated by Burmese Army. She failed to recognize important of international supports for her and her country. Is she relying now only on so-called national supports?))

ASSK: ((As all of you know, the attention of the world on the Rakhine issue has been immense, beginning with the attacks on the police outposts in Rakhine State last (year) October, the terrorist attacks which happened again in August of this year and the related problems that grew out of these attacks. There has been a lot of criticisms against our country. We need to understand international opinion. However, just as no one can fully understand the situation of our country the way we do, no one can desire peace and development for our country more than us. That is why we need to tackle these problems based on the strength of our unity.))

WL: ((She talks about deadly attacks on Police stations by ARSA militants in last year, October and this year, 25 of August. She used the words of “terrorist attacks" for ARSA insurgents group but she failed to mention "terrorist attacks" by Burmese Army on innocent Rohingya victims. She may seem to forget to use the word of “terrorist attacks” of Burmese Army on innocent Rohingya civillians. She neglected to express sympathy with half of millions Rohingya refugees who have fled to Bangladesh to escape killings, raping, burning alive by Burmese Army and radical Rakhine Buddhists mob. She is saying like ex-dictators that no one in the world better understand Burma than herself and her people. She did not know that it was British historian who told them, you Burman (Bamar) are one of the groups of Tibeto-Burman. It was British people who build Rangoon University and give them latest Modern education in Burma. Burmese people are getting only Buddhist monastic education before British went to Burma. Today she is claiming that no foreigner can understand Burmese’s problems better than Burmaese people. She is also discrediting international desire of peace and developments in Burma.))

ASSK: ((At this time, our country needs to continue doing the things that needs to be done. Furthermore, the things that need(s) to be done, (what) should be done correctly, bravely and effectively. We will implement the commitments we made till progress and success is achieved. Rather than rebutting criticisms and allegations with words, we will show the world by our actions and our deeds. In the Rakhine State, there are so many things to be done. If we are to take stock and prioritize, there are three main tasks: 

a) First, repatriation of those who have crossed over to Bangladesh and providing humanitarian assistance effectively;

b) Secondly, resettlement and rehabilitation; and

c) Third, bringing development to the region and establishing durable peace.

We will enhance our ability to provide humanitarian assistance effectively. We are negotiating with the Government of Bangladesh on the matter of accepting those who are now in Bangladesh. Since our independence, we have twice, successfully negotiated with Bangladesh on the issue. Based on these successful traditions, we are now negotiating for the third time.))

WL: ((Promises of Suu Kyi has become unreliable and untrustworthy because she promised in the last speech that all human rights violators will be punished according to the laws of Burma but no one from Burmese Army and extremist Rakhine Buddhist mob was arrested for their crimes. Moreover her government and Burmese Army indeed used a lot of moneys to encounter international media for her so-called iceberg of misinformation! But the world is not stupid as they think and their systematically media warfare was become very weaken in the international community. That is also a great effect for their blocking international and national medias, except for state-sponsored program, for going to effective areas in Rakhine State. Then she's admitted that systematic Ethnic Cleansing was not started recently but decades ago. First time was in 1978, and following was 1991. In fact these two previous crises was nothing to do with Suu Kyi. They were committed crimes of Burmese military dictators, General Ne Win and Tyrant General Than Shwe. Please note that these previous two repatriations were not successful traditions for Rohingya victims because thousands could not return their ancestral homeland, Arakan. On the other hand, they were successful traditions for Burmese dictators as they don’t want to see any Rohingya in Arakan state of Burma if possible. Past agreements are NOT totally fair for Rohingya. At that time, Bangladesh government did not get enough international supports and they also had their own problems. Today is different; Bangladesh government earned a lot of international praise, sympathy and supports as well they have more stable political situations ever before. Bangladesh was considering to having fair-go and new an agreement with Burmese Government. Furthermore Bangladesh Foreign Minister informed international community within this week, they have sent new agreement proposal to Burmese Government. They are still waiting and getting no response from Burmese government. That’s what Suu Kyi’s government is doing seriously for Rohingya Crisis.))

ASSK: ((As we work on the resettlement and rehabilitation efforts, we need to work not only for those who will be returning from Bangladesh but also for the very small national races such as Daing-net and Myo as well as Rakhine Nationals and Hindus. We will work to ensure that they will regain their normalcy. We will seek durable, sustainable programs to improve their lives. We have to formulate long term programmes for the development of the region and continue working for durable peace to relieve this region of conflicts in the years to come.))

WL: ((She even doesn’t have a heart to call the name of “Rohingya” while she mentioned nearly all of ethnic groups in Rakhine state by name. According to the Wall Street Journal, Suu Kyi forbid visiting diplomat for using “Rohingya” name. She told that, “They are not Rohingya. They are Bengali. They are foreigners.” That is what she believed about Rohingya but her believed was against historical evidences. Rohingya were NOT the descendants of colonial era "farm coolies" from East Bengal as Myanmar government blatantly lies to the world. Based on the 14th century stone inscriptions, Professor Dr. G. H. Luce described them as "a fine type of devout and scholarly-minded Muslims." They have been indigenous ethnic group to North Arakan since 1400 AD. According to the late Professor Luce, essentially the founder of modern historical studies of the ancient Myanmar or Burma and the mentor of Professor Dr. Than Tun, the presence of the Rohingya (Rohinjas) in Burma was evidenced in the stone inscriptions from the Ava period (AD 1400). [Luce, G. H. 1985, Phases of pre-Pagan Burma : languages and history / by G.H. Luce Oxford University Press Oxford ; New York] The term "Rooinga" (Rohingya) which can also be found in a research "A Comparative Vocabulary of Some of the Languages Spoken in Burma Empire" carried out by British medical doctor, researcher and traveler, Dr. Francis Buchanan in 1799 C.E. Its copy can be received here: Dr. Francis Buchanan's record was done in 1799 C.E., before British colonial period, is based on primary evidence. That is why Western scholars now have no problems to believe that Rohingya people lived in Arakan before Burma occupied Arakan. That is why they find the Muslim Rohingya being unfairly treated for their racial and religious differences with the Buddhist- Mongoloid Burman- Rakhine variety. This is clearly racism.

Suu Kyi wants to use international donations mostly for Rohingya to other ethnic groups as they have been demanded in the past 50% share for non-Rohingyas and other for Rohingya. Their numbers are not the same. Rohingya refugees has highest numbers. If they get any national donations that are going to Rakhine state, they do not consider for Rohingya but only for their fellows Buddhist Rakhine mostly. They have had discriminated Rohingya in many forms. I am not denying that there are some amounts of people who have to Burma from today Bangladesh in the period of British colonial rule. It should be noted that they are NOT illegal migrants because British ruled over Bangladesh as well as Burma. But I would to quote from Israel research Moshe Yegar’s writing. He said, “those Muslims who had resided since the days of Mrauk-U dynasty and the Muslims from Chittagong who immigrated into Arakan in 19th and 20th century were integrated to some extent and comprised the present Rohingyas. [Yegar, Moshe. 2002. Between Integration and Secession: The Muslim Communities of the Southern Philippines, Southern Thailand, and Western Burma/Myanmar. Oxford. Lexinton Books.])) 

ASSK: ((For each program there are many tasks. Our entrepreneurs, NGOs, CSOs and the people, have stated their wish to participate and help. The international community has also stated their wish to cooperate and assist. This is a matter of national importance. The Union Government and state/regional governments will take the leading role. We will give due regard and serious consideration to the sincere offers of cooperation made at home and from abroad. For the development of Rakhine State, to implement projects in all sectors, we need a mechanism which allows the Union Government, the people, the private sector, local NGOs and CSOs, friendly countries, UN agencies, INGOs to work together in cooperation. We will call this mechanism the "Union Enterprise for Humanitarian Assistance, Resettlement and Development in Rakhine". This enterprise has been established with the aim of allowing the Union Government and all local and international organizations to work in all sectors and all strata of society. In this "Union Enterprise for Humanitarian Assistance, Resettlement and Development in Rakhine", I will act as Chairperson, representing the Government in my capacity as State Counsellor. Dr. Win Myat Aye, Union Minister for Social Welfare, Relief and Resettlement will act as Vice Chairman. He is the Chairman of the Committee assigned to implement the recommendations of Dr. Kofi Annan’s Advisory Commission on Rakhine State. We will implement the short and long term tasks effectively. We will use this Programme to show practical and progressive results as we work towards the emergence of a peaceful and developed Rakhine State. I wish to earnestly invite and welcome, all the people of our country, NGOs, CSOs and Business Leaders to join hands and cooperate with us. We will begin the Programme this coming week. As we implement this Programme, I believe that we will be able to utilize the strength of will, determination, and knowledge; bravely and energetically. We will use the power of truth and purity, so that this Enterprise will be worthy of being called a ‘milestone’ in our history.”))

WL: ((This plan is seems to be acceptable but need a lot of times and resources. Importantly there is no SINGLE Rohingya representative in their enterprise. A handful of Rohingya people, who have citizenship of Burma, are living currently in Rangoon, they should be included in Suu Kyi's so-called Union Enterprise for Humanitarian Assistance, Resettlement and Development in Rakhine.))

ASSK: ((To develop the Rakhine state, we have invited those who wish to assist us; UN agencies, financial institutions like the World Bank and ADB, INGOs like the Nippon Foundation and friendly countries. We place great hope on our Union nationals living within the country and abroad. No matter where they may be in the world. I have no doubt that all of them would come forth to help us with Metta (loving kindness) and Thitsa (Truth). Although our Union may not be strong, I am confident that we will besuccessful by uniting our will. Our people are well known for their generosity and philanthropy and have even been ranked as number one in the world. We will put to good use this generous nature of our people, systematically. The most powerful force for making our Union peaceful and developed is our people. No matter how much anger, hatred and bullying, we may have to face, we shall overcome all challenges and obstacles by holding fast to Metta, Karuna and Mudita (Loving kindness, Compassion and Sympathetic joy). Let us join hands and work together for the success of the "Union Enterprise for Humanitarian Assistance, Resettlement and Development in Rakhine" with the understanding that we are not working for one region only but for the entire Union. Beginning from Sunday, 15th October, we will announce through our website and State news media how you can help and how to communicate with us. We shall make arrangements, so that all the sons and daughters of our Union and our friends abroad who have goodwill in their hearts may get in touch with the nearest diplomatic missions and Consulates-General to help us in this endeavour. May I once again pray for the good health of all our people, the true strength of our country, whom we trust and depend upon. May you all have peace and tranquillity in your hearts. May all your righteous good wishes be fulfilled.))

WL: ((This part is an ocean of loving, kindness, compassion and sympathetic joy. This should be most welcoming but if they have had these noble attitudes at first place, Rohingya will not suffered these kinds of unimaginable atrocities.))

In conclusion, I can analyzed her speech as follows:

1. She failed to speak about when Rohingya will be recognized as one of the indigenous groups of Burma as they were before in the period of Parliamentary Democracy Era.

2. She failed to speak about when International and National medias will be allowed to go Rakhine State.

3. She failed to speak about when she will issue visas for UN Facts Finding Mission to investigate serious crimes, Ethnic Cleansing and human rights violations in Burma.

4. She failed to speak about how Rohingya who are currently living in Central Rakhine areas, mainly in Sittway District will be provided foods, waters, medicare and so on.

5. She failed to speak about how Human Rights violators from Burmese Army and Rakhine Buddhists mob will be prosecuted.

6. She is trying to divert an attention of International communities mainly for UN Security Council and European Commission. The first speech (9/19) was before UN Security Council meeting on (9/28) and also this speech (10/12) was come out because tomorrow (10/13) UN Security Council has informal meetings with Kofi Annan. Suu Kyist government know that UN Security Council has absolute power to refer Rohingya Genocide or Ethnic Cleansing case to International Criminal Court for full investigation.

Wynston Lawrence is a Political Analyst and Human Rights Activist based in western Australia. 

Follow on twitter @LawrenceWynston

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