Saturday, June 11, 2005

Sampling "Democratic Intolerance": A Sordid Tale for Burma/Myanmar

Compiler's Remark:

I don't mean to sound as if all Burmese exiles who genuinely push for democratic reforms in my country are vicious and mindless or viciously mindless when I write Burmese 'democrats' can't deal with differences, without getting vicious and nasty to one another.

But the system they say they are fighting for is to be based on a foundation of differences and a process of sorting those differences out in a civic and constructive manner, both in theory and practice. We have a saying "because of a few rotten fishes on the boat, the whole boat stinks and is disgusting."

I would prefer to think that our Burmese saying will turn out to be true.
For the opposite would be a devastating blow to any Burmese who wishes genuinely to see democracy built in Burma.


You can't build a democratic system with a few good fishes if the whole pile of fish were dead in spirit and mind. Poverty of intellect can be remedied. But there is no panecea for poverty of heart and viciousness of spirit.

Enjoy the following cluster of samples - a deformed version of democracy at work, on-line and in reality - among the exiles, including the leading figures of the group that calls itself "the government in exile."

From: NLDmembrsnSupportersofCRPPnNLDnDASSK@yahoogroups.com On Behalf Of peacock_8888@yahoo.com
Sent: 10 June 2005 16:49
To: NLDmembrsnSupportersofCRPPnNLDnDASSK@yahoogroups.com
Subject: [NLDmembrsnSupportersofCRPPnNLDnDASSK] Prime Minister Sein Win and Zarni in the UK parliment

A Melodrama of Verbal Confrontation between Dr. Zarni (FBC) and Dr. Sein Win, the Prime Minister of the National Coalition of Union of Burma (NCGUB)
"Dr Sein Win (Compiler's note - It was really Dr. Sein Win's deputy Dr. Thaung Tun, not Dr. Sein Win) explained to the audience that Dr Zarni must be missing the country by living in exile and frustrated for not being able to returned to Burma. ... It was a strange reality to witness a 'pseudo military junta's' representation by Zarni and Dr Sein Win elected by the people of Burma having a verbal exchange in the very mother of Parliament where tradition of British democracy is rooted."
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"Ko Sa La" Sat, 11 Jun 2005 14:19:13 +0100 Subject: Re: [NLDmembrsnSupportersofCRPPnNLDnDASSK] Prime Minister Sein Win and Zarni in the UK parliment

Ko Maung Daung
Many thanks for an interesting article. It's shame that I came to know about the event quiet late and hence I was unable to be there at the Partliament witnessing Zarni's Maniac Melodrama.

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From: "pow_volume" pow_volume@yahoo.com
Date: Fri, 10 Jun 2005 19:14:46 -0000
Subject: [Women-Group-Burma] Re: Savvy Salt of the Earth, not Cowed

P.H.D. (called Pizza Hut Delivery in some countries).

On behalf of the one of the most brutal dictatorships in the world, Dr Zarni has blasted the NCGUB........ The spokesman's hint cannot be regarded the approved decision, etc. A hint is clearly a hint.CONTROL YOURSELF WHEN YOU HEAR OF VICTORIES OF DEMOCRACY. P.O.W.
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To: Women-Group-Burma@yahoogroups.com
From: "tayza thuria"
Date: Fri, 10 Jun 2005 20:29:29 +0100 (BST)
Subject: Re: [Women-Group-Burma] Re: Savvy Salt of the Earth, not Cowed

Hi everybody

That person called Dr. Zarni, used Daw Suu's Nobel Prize money to finish his furhterr studies abroad and now he is shamelessly attacking Daw Suu & NLD. NLD should sue him to get all those money back from him. Tayza
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To All Burmese "Democrats" Who Can't Tolerate Differences

Despite whatever pro-democracy words that come out of your mouth, you clearly don't understand that democracy requires that we respect and appreciate - not attempt to suppress, silence, or otherwise intimidate - those who hold views that are different from yours.

You cite Daw Aung San Suu Kyi as your leader. And yet you do NOT practice whatshe preaches. This movement is not simply about political change in Burma. It is also about changing our spirit and behavior that are typically authoritarian, anti-democratic and, worse still, vicious. Didn't she write or say somethingto the effect that this whole movement is to bring about "the revolution of thespirit"?

I respect her immensely and, for 10 years, I supported her policies, her leadership, and her party when I believed they would be able to lead and deliver our country from 4-decades of our people's misery.

Leaders and governments come and go. Parties come and go.

My loyalty is to the country I love and the ordinary people in whose name I joined this fight.

I have no party, organizational or personal loyalty to any leader,organization, or party.

If that makes me an enemy of you all and if that will make me burn in Hell for the next 1,000 years, I am more than happy to burn in hell than to beassociated with those who claim to fight for freedom, but whose minds are poisoned, whose words slanderous, and whose spirit mean, and whose intellect wanting.

We have all been looking for ways to push for change in our country.
No social change has ever come about as a result of a leader or a party. It's always a result of many different factors, external or internal, leaders or followers, organizations or individuals.

We all continue to share the NLD'smission of pushing for change in Burma. But we may no longer agree with NLD'spolicies or strategies. That doesn't make us SPDC apologists.

The world is more complicated than the simple 'bad-guys-and-good-guys' slogan or view. There are more than two categories of individuals - good and bad, selfish and altruistic, opportunists and genuine revolutionaries and so on. There is more than one way to look at a problem and thus there is more than one solution.

You argue or advocate what you believe, without being nasty and personal.
If I were Daw Aung San Suu Kyi, I would be so embarrassed, beyond words, that you call her your leader. And yet you don't even understand what she has been pushing the Burmese - to revolutionize the way they behave or think. She wants you to think democratically.

And thinking democratically demands that you don't behave like those in power - intimidate, slander, suppress, and otherwise attempt to silence those who are critical of their views.
If you can't be democratic, at least think!

In the most unlikely event men (and women) like you come to power, God helps Burma and the Burmese people.

You are no different from the guys in power who would beat up or lock up those simply because they disagree with the government's views or generals' views.

Zarni