World briefly on Nov. 19
#1 Nov 20, 2012
What Obama does not know is that Rangoon University was the hotbed of anti-colonialism. There AungSan and his colleagues returned their degrees to university authorities, considering them only fit to serve the colonial masters.
That interpretation was correct. Burma's independence movement staryed before with Saya San, a Buddhist monk.
The student movement led by AungSan gathered momentum with the outbreak of WWII and the military training by Japan of the 'Thirty Comrades'.
However, at independence AungSan was duped by Clement Attlee to sign the Panglong agreement that was the root cause of all Burma's problems.
It provided for break-up of once a unitary kingdom of Burma.
Having practised divide-and-rule, having instilled a sense of separateness, Panglong was the 'knife' that was to cut Burma into pieces.
That is why the military had to take over power from U Nu in 1958.
The new generation of student failed to understand the dangerous implications of Panglong and how it impeded the evolution of democracy in Burma. Despite the repressions, the military managed the state intact albeit pockets of armed insurrection.
Now we are seeing the forces of history interacting with global realpolitik, with unexpected winners and losers, without any clear vision of the future Burma. Obama's hopes may yet to prove groundless eventually.
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