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Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Aung San Suu Lyi gets support of lower ranks of Burmese military.

Burmese military

What are the prospects for Aung San Suuu Kyi? Apparently, since her release, she has the support of the lower ranks of the military. Surely the more die-hard upper ranks must have included this in their calculations, perhaps throwing the lower ranks as a sop to her NLD.  If Aung Sang is satisfied, that would mean, as I have suggested, that the Democracy will become a sort of state religion, eventually a calcified dogma like the Burmese Way to Socialism.

On the other hand, if the democratic mood of the lower ranks has come as a surprise, Burma could be in for a rift in its military. If that will lead to a peaceful "Magenta (Buddhist) Revolution," it may end up like most of the other "coloured" democratic revolutions of the recent past- a change in pysiognomy but not in heart, one elite instead of another in a "managed" democracy.

It's true that old-style palace revolts seem to be going out of style around the world but the problem with the popular, peaceful democratic revolutions that the West has been so enthusiastiic about is that they often replace one corrupt oligarchy with another.

If, however, the division within the Burmese military means civil war, there might at least be a more thorough cleaning out of the old order. But whether that too will lead to democracy is anyone's guess.
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