Myanmar coup 101day plus and child-soldiers of Suu Kyi’s Parallel Government NUG

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Myanmar Tribune (June 19, 2021)

The images of 10 year old Chin ethnic boy barely taller than the musket he was carrying, climbs up the hills of North Western Myanmar went virals on Facebook, served as the symbol of resistance to the military coup that have been simmering over 101 days since early February 2021.

The proud little boy along with thousands of other underaged and underprivileged armed-children served as a core of PDF, the People’s Defence Forces formed on 5 May 2021 under the NUG National Unity Government of Myanmar led by Aung San Suu Kyi’s NLD party. The new army of NLD party Child Soldiers waging a violent urban warfare against government forces for the restoration of Democracy might be contrary to the image of Nobel Peace Laureate Ms.Suu Kyi but well serves the interests for the plethora of political opportunists, drug traffickers, arm dealers and international terrorist.

The declared strategy of NUG for its armed wing PDF to win the 73 year old civil war is to organize regional militias and stage urban warfare by assasination of local government officials, civilian informants (called Dalan in Burmese), destruction of government offices as part of Civil Disobedience Movement before attacking security forces with any available weapons such as Improvised Explosive Devices IED. The Godspel of cyber based NUG, the parallel Government of Myanmar, is religiously followed by the millions of internet savvy teenagers who are familiar with such virtual warfare on their smart phone apps with making/ researching of IED, flint-locked guns, raising funds to purchase assault rifles and organizing military training. In a country that have been waging active civil war for 73 years with half a million government armed forces and quarter million well-armed rebels from over hundre different revolutionary forces, there is no shortage of weapons or recruit for an additional rebel force.

It seemed like new chapter of Myanmar’s civil war is on stage but wait, there is déjà-vu. The Myanmar civil war begun after three months of gaining independence from United Kindom on March 1948 which was couple months before the Israel came into existence. The bitter war have many episodes of street to street urban fighting like in Syria, conventional war like Chinese civil war and guerallia warfare like in Vietnam. Comparable to Israeli Defences Fores IDF, Myanmar’s government armed forces Tatmadaw which is formed by Aung San Suu Kyi’s father emerged from three and half battalion strong rag-tag army with war remaniant weapons fighting against superior opponents, to one of the strongest army in the region with half million soldiers under unified command. The belligérant rebel forces have combine strength of about quarter million soldiers from plethora of different organizations with very different political, regional, ethnicity and business interests. Perhaps some of Myanmar’s rebel forces are labeled as narco-terrorist cartels or drug producers/traffickers by USA and its allies. No rebel force have more than 50,000 armed solders on a single command. The Governent forces which held less than 0.5% of Myanmar’s territory 73 years ago controls more than 80% area now while once superior rebel forces holding less than 20% of Myanmar. The urban warfare in the territory held by Government forces by a new born child soldier army is not a game changer in the violent history of this country.

The Déjà-vu doesn’t stop here. The National Coalition Government NUG which is the parent of child soldiers’ army PDF is not the only parallel Government, Myanmar have seen in its contemporary history. The first one was formed in 1970s by U Nu exiled prime minister of Myanmar in Thailand border controlled by Karen rebels whose armed forces PLA was crushed both by its ally Karen rebels and Myanmar army. It was terminated when U Nu surrendered in 1980. The second parallel government was formed in 1990s by Ms. Suu Kyi’s cousin Dr. Sein Win as NCGUB with its armed wing ABSDF. The second one had some success over the first one with offices in Washington DC and observer seat at United Nations. It also cease existence when Aung San Suu Kyi accepted Junta’s 2008 constitution and entered to parliament on 2012 by-election. The self-appointed exiled prime minister Dr. Sein Win surrendered and return home to Myanmar around 2019. The armed wing ABSDF barely exist on the ground before February 2021 coup with few hundred armed-men having no territory of its own and signed a ceased fire agreement NCA with the Junta army. Perhaps, third attempt might have different result.

The strategy of NUG’s PDF child soldiers’ army had sharp turn few days after its declaration on May as Junta announced the reopening of all schools on early next month. The NUG instructd on social media that in order for the Junta not able to rule the country, people must join Civil Disobediance Movement CDM by not attending the schools open by Junta. On second half of May 2021, the social media is flooded with instructions from NUG/NLD supporters for PDF child soldiers about disturbing and attacking schools, teachers and students. The Government army and police begun to deploy on school compounds at the last week of May in preparation for the reopening of schools that was scheduled on 1st June 2021. The junta requested the parents of the students to volunteer in schools’ security arrangements while NLD/NUG supporters labeling anyone attending school as Junta supporter or collaborator. All government schools in Myanmar have been closed over a year for Covid-19 pandemic and parents and students who have no partisan politics affiliation are excited to resume education but faced dilemma.

The attack of schools with explosives and Molotov cocktail bottles happened around the country on the last week of May and social media is flooded with rumors about security forces stationed in schools to use students as human shields. All of the rumors are started by NUG and NLD party lobbyists and social influenzers on social networking site like Facebook and twitter which is picked up by domestic and international media without verification on the facts on ground. Every person who live normal life in Myanmar know that security forces only entered school compounds to provide security for the students after middle of May. But depending on the person you are asking the answer will twist the truth. But if any parent who sent their kids to school for study or not to join meth-addict child soldiers’ army will answer the truth if their personal security is assured. The beginning of June mark the reopening of schools around the country with the students of thousands of students along with hundreds of arson and explosive attacks on school, teachers and students.

Since before 1st June until time of this article on 20 Junt 2021, there are hundreds of attacks by NLD/NUG’s PDF child army causing material damage on number of schools (some burnt to ground), personal injuries and some loss of lives. The worst event happened on 31 May 2021 just before schools reopen when 5 civilians including 2 female school teachers in Gangaw township, Magway division of North Western Myanmar were burnt to death after their tongues cut off for working in the schools by NLD/NUG’s child soldiers of PDF who were high on methamphatamine. There also are hundreds of assasinations on unarmed civilians by Aung San Suu Kyi’s PDF child soldiers by accusing victims as collaborator of the military Junta or simply because they belongs to different political party or having different political opinions. The explosions of IEDs in public areas, markets, schools, hospitals and religious building are common and people are scare of everyone. Although the Junta’s security forces are fearsome, the ordinary law abiding Myanmar citizens fear more of Aung San Suu Kyi’s drug addict child soldiers since they will arbitrarily accused anyone as collaborator (Dalan) and summarily executed.

The Junta’s body count for assasinated unarmed civilians by Aung San Suu Kyi’s PDF child soldiers is around 177 as of mid-June but this chaotic event of drug addict militas attacking schools and hospitals are un-reported or under reported by mainstream international media and do not get attention like atrocities by BokoHarem or Taliban. It may partly because international media picked up their stories from local Myanmar media which is operated and sponsored by pro NLD/NUG or Pro- Aung San Suu Kyi dissidents. It should be noted that most of the local media including Junta’s official news agencies are just the parties of belligérants and not based on facts but bias to their own persepectives.

The recent event of the burning of KinMa village in North Western Myanmar is the most noticble lack of under reporting. On 15 June 2021, the village of Innma was burnt down to ground during the clashes between Aung San Suu Kyi’s PDF and government forces. The international medias along with Myanmar based USA/UK embassies and United Nations quickly jump on to blame Junta’s army for the atrocities based on social media and exiled local media’s reports without able to verify the situation on ground. The bubble of their information sources burst few days later on 17th June when the video footages of Aung San Suu Kyi’s PDF child soldiers burning the Kinma village with Molotov cocktails to prevent Junta’s forces to enter and the police officers trying to rescue trapped elders from fire. Although both sides of the story can not be independently verified in the chaos of battlefield, It is clear that UN, USA and UK failed to follow basic principles of natural justice by not hearing both sides before judging or accusing anything.

The lessons from Syria and Iraq wars where the opposion forces against the dictatorship regimes used news media outlets to fabricate about weapons of mass destruction WMD or hoax chemical attacks for soliciting international intervention on their cause seemed to be repeating in Myanmar on 2021. Or should we say the lessons that have been learnt and forgotten for the personal interests of the International politicians are repeating in Myanmar for the enjoyment of global audience ?

M.B is Australian based Myanmar Observer

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