Monday, July 4, 2016

Can Suu Kyi follow the model of Mandela?

As Myanmar looks to reconcile the differences between its Buddhist majority and Rohingya Muslim minority, it could do worse than follow Nelson Mandela’s lead. That is the view of Adama Dieng, who is a UN special adviser on the prevention of genocide

But Dieng forgets that Suu Kyi is no Mandela. She has been a racist and bigot to the core for decades, very much unlike Mandela. That info was somewhat hidden for the non-Buddhist world who had fancied all the good opinions about her. Slowly she unmasked her true ugly image in the last few years when the Rohingya crisis started in 2012 to show how dedicated Buddhist she has been to the Sasana and Sangha. Many political novices thought that such tactics were part of her broader scheme to get the Buddhist majority vote in the last year's election. But she did not fool us, and now with all the power of the state in her disposal, she has not changed the evil ways of the past to make a difference in the lives of the persecuted Muslims. She even called upon the international community against using “emotive terms” that could make the tensions in Rakhine state more difficult to address.

They are talking about references to the minority Muslim population that has lived for generations in the predominantly Buddhist country’s Rakhine state as “Rohingya”.

The term matters, because it symbolises recognition of a community that has long been oppressed. Denying anyone’s identity is a serious form of discrimination and neither the international community nor the government of Myanmar should compromise when it comes to recognising fundamental rights of this nature.

Our identity defines us. It can be associated with race, religion, ethnicity, nationality, culture, gender, sexual orientation, and many other qualities that speak to the essence of our standing, both individually and in wider society. Identity is – or should be – the glue that binds people together. Thus, the US government has refused to follow Suu Kyi's directive on the Rohingya, and so should do the rest of the civilized world.

In my opinion, to expect miracles in Suu Kyi's evolution would be foolish.

You can read Dieng's article by clicking here.

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