Myanmar- some hope in Rebel Victories.
23 November 2023
Three groups in northern Myanmar have joined together in Operation 1027, after the day they launched their offensive (27 October). They have been very successful against the hated military dictatorship. The question is whether this will be the beginning of the end for the junta, who have been helped a great deal by the Chinese, presumably for economic concessions. But the Chinese may not be happy with the regime, as it has tolerated a ‘scam industry’ near the Chinese border, and it may also be that the Chinese are not sure that the junta have enough control of the country to allow a rail line to be built to a port on the Myanmar coast, which the Chinese want to use to export via the Bay of Bengal and the Indian Ocean without needing to go around the Malay peninsula.
It is speculated that the Chinese have given tacit support to the rebels, and if this is the case the junta will have more trouble.
I visited Myanmar in 2017 when Aung San Suu Kyi was theoretically in power, but with the unpopular military junta still really in control. (There are a number of posts on my website, chesterfieldevans.com if you search ‘Myanmar’).
There was a coup in 2021 and Aung Sang Su Kyi was forced from her figurehead power and charged with treason because she had a few walkie talkies to talk to her staff, which were made ‘illegal’ because the junta could not eavesdrop on them. There was some resistance to the coup and unarmed people were shot, but it has led to more organised resistance.
Myanmar is a very divided country so there are different ethnic groups and armies resisting with varying success in different parts of the country. Not much news of this has been in the mainstream media here, until this rebel success. The military are universally feared and hated, which was evident even to the most casual tourist. They are not done yet, but if they lose Chinese support and the people believe that they can be overthrown, they will be.