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Professor Michael Charney: The best historical research on Rohingyas and the fiction of Myanmar National History

Dr. Maung Zarni's Remark:

The best research on Rohingya history: British Orientalism which created the pseudo-scientific biological notion of "Taiyinthar" or "real natives" of #Myanmar caused that country's post-colonial cancer of official & popular genocidal Racism. 

This comprehensive keynote lecture by Professor Michael Charney of SOAS who did his PhD on Rakhine at the University of Michigan is the single best cogent tracing of the ideological roots of today's genocide:

He explains persuasively how colonising #Britain's ideological root of Myanmar's genocide of Rohingya ultimately resulted in Myanmar's historical imagination which in turn rested on the White Man's pseudo-scientific idea of neatly (artificially) defined racial/biological categories of "the real natives".

The stage was set for the racist Burmese state controlled by the military and the shaped public opinion to eradicate any GROUP that is excluded from the popular and official imagination about who really belongs and who doesn't belong to Myanmar.

The 1982 Citizenship Act explicitly rests on this originally British defined 'nativeness" of peoples in the colonial hierarchy. The 1982 Citizenship is broadly speaking in the vein of the Nazi Party's Nuremberg Race Laws by which the German Jews - who were more German
than Jewish in Germany - were "de-nationalized" at the Nazi Party conference at Nuremberg in 1935.


The Roots of the Rohingya Crisis: The Eradication of a Myanmar Ethnic Group

Michael Charney and Eaint Thiri Thu participated in a roundtable discussion moderated by Anne Blackburn titled 'The Roots of the Rohingya Crisis: The Eradication of a Myanmar Ethnic Group,' on Tuesday, November 7, 2017 in Rhodes-Rawlings Auditorium, Klarman Hall.

The Rohingya are a largely Muslim minority group living in Myanmar’s western Rakhine State. Denied citizenship by law, the Rohingya are often described as the most persecuted minority in the world. In August, Rohingya militants attacked police outposts in Rakhine. The Burmese military responded with a crackdown that UN officials have characterized as ethnic cleansing. Roughly half the 1.1 million Rohingya have fled to neighboring countries, mainly Bangladesh.

Michael W. Charney is a military and imperial historian specializing in Southeast Asia in both the premodern and modern periods. He received his PhD at the University of Michigan in 1999. Eaint Thiri Thu was born and raised in Myanmar. She is currently pursuing a master's degree in human rights at the Humphrey School of Public Affairs, University of Minnesota. She was recently awarded a Fulbright scholarship, an Interdisciplinary Center for the Study of Global Change fellowship, and a Humphrey School of Public Affairs scholarship to pursue her studies in the United States.

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