Dream Interview VII, Rule by Law (of the Jungle)

Dream Interview VII

Rule by Law (of the Jungle)

BURMA DIGEST: Good evening Datuk Sri. Kindly allow me to continue with our dream interview. May you kindly explain us about the concepts of Rule by Law.

H. E. Mr Anwar Ibrahim…The SPDC Junta is seen to be worse than using that Rule by Law. They are seen as not even using the proper Law to suppress the unarmed peaceful demonstrators and the whole country.

Let’s start with the concept of the Mobocracy where_

i. Political control by a mob.

ii. Using the mass of “common people” as the source of political control.

You could see this trend becoming popular nowadays because the dictators around the world became modern, they are more concern about their image among their people and in front of the political spectators around the world.

We noticed the use of SPDC affiliated civilian thugs USDA, Swan Arrshin together with Military Intelligent Provocateurs or instigators disguised as civilian demonstrators in the Monks led peaceful protests in Burma.

BURMA DIGEST:How do you see the “Laws” of the SPDC?

In contrast to the democracy where the ultimate power of the government is in the hands of the people, where did the SPDC’s power based?

Answer…After all for the Military Dictators like SPDC, “the power came out from the barrel of the guns.” Any thing came out from their mouth became the order or Law of the day to be obeyed by all the civilians and the Tatmadaw.

The SPDC Generals don’t want any excuses, job done or report of mission accomplished only accepted.

The Military Personals are only taught strictly to just obey the orders. No questions nor excuses or reasoning are allowed to scrutinize the order whether it is right or wrong, just or unjust, appropriate or not etc.

Military people are trained to fight, assault, kill and obey the order given by their superiors only.

They should not be the masters or leaders of the country, giving the orders to the people. The politicians who are chosen by the people are qualified to lead and give orders not only to the people but even on to the whole military.

BURMA DIGEST:In Myanmar, the military rulers are above the Law. The double standards in the implementation of law are ever present under dictator Myanmar Military rulers. Any comments?

Answer…There is one privileged law for the ruling elite like SPDC Generals, staying even above all their own laws and another unfair cruel suppressive law for the rest especially for the opposition.

All the ordinary citizens are coerced into submission, cowardice and obedience by the Rule by the Law. Their Military Laws or Martial Laws are also could be regarded as the Laws of the Jungle.

Under the SPDC there are another few sets of Laws:

  1. For the ceased fire rebels

  2. For their cronies and families

  3. For the rich who could grease the local and central Military authorities

  4. For the opposition

  5. For the Ethnic Minorities

  6. For the Religious Minorities, especially for the Rohingyas etc.

To be called a democratic country;

  1. we must enact just and fair laws for all the citizens of Burma/Myanmar.

  2. In addition, no one must be above the law: whether he is from Military, a General, Senior General, King, President, Prime Minister, Cabinet Minister, opposition leaders or opposition party members, mixed blooded relatively new citizens or Ethnic Minority.

  3. We all need the progressive, longsighted Governments that always avoid or refrain from interfering in the way of their citizens’ ability to make a living and progress will always end up ruling over the wealthiest countries.

BURMA DIGEST: Could you kindly analyze the so called “Laws” of SPDC?

Answer…In the SPDC’s Rule by Law_

  1. there is almost no pre-written just and fair law.

  2. Even if there are Laws, they never respect nor protect the rights of each and every citizen.

  3. No one is above the law except the military rulers, cronies and families

  4. and they are more than ever ready to prosecute or persecute any opponents

  5. by using their unjust laws.

Myanmar Military dictators rule by law_

  • not because the law is higher than theirself

  • but because it is convenient to do so

  • to protect their total and permanent dominance.

BURMA DIGEST: What about using the Emergency or Security Laws to lockup the opposition?

Answer…In Rule by Law, the governments like SPDC use laws as the most convenient way to govern or subdue the people.

For example, Emergency Acts section 5 of Myanmar or Internal Security Acts or Terrorism Prevention Acts and all the “Laws” in many countries that could lock-up the opposition leaders and members conveniently without needing to formally charge in the conventional criminal courts, are cruel and inhumane.

The opposition leaders are_

  • conveniently denied their rights of self defense

  • in a proper court of Justice

  • but sometimes arrested without hearing

  • or are forced to appear in a Kangaroo courts

  • to face the trumpeted charges

  • in front of subservient eunuch Judges

  • without the help of legal representation

  • or presence of their defense lawyers.

And most of the dictators use the unfair, restrictive laws such as Printing Press acts, and various restrictive acts, rules and regulations to control the every citizen’s daly life.

Question: Let’s go back to the Rule of Law to see the differences between them.

Answer…Rule of Law is opposed by authoritarian and totalitarian states like Myanmar SPDC Junta.

But even many of the authoritarian and totalitarian states accepted and partially practice the rule of law because some of these laws ultimately enhance the power of the dictators disguising as for the security of the “state” and the “nation”.

They used the bogyman, neo-colonists, communists, foreigners, internal traitors.

They used the excuses of peace and stability of the country, security of the country, for the sake of economic progress, scarring away the foreign investors and tourists etc. asking all the people to stay united behind them, (read: not infront of them, opposing or confronting the great leader and not to support the opposing person or party.) and continue to support them.

So it is more convenient for those governments to adopt the principle of rule by law rather than rule of law.

But for the SPDC Military Junta rulers and law are synonymous —

  • Sr General is the ruler

  • and his words are LAW.

So the laws of the SPDC are simply their will or desire or orders for the citizens to obey without any questions.

The new LAWS, acts, Rules and regulations are ordered on and off according to their whims and fancies.

In the SPDC Military Junta_

  • the government possesses the inherent authority to act purely on its own volition

  • and without being subject to any checks or limitations.

Rule by law can be both ad hoc as the Orders or Laws from the SPDC according to their whims and fancy (which is genuine despotism) or principled.

Principled rule by law theory shares with rule of law theory the arguments that a stable, generally recognized law is needed in order to maintain generality, impersonality, and effectiveness of government.

Thus principled rule by law theory allows for what Fuller has called “the internal morality of law” to the extent that this is prudentially justifiable as conducive to the ends of government.

The SPDC Junta Rule by Law, because the Myanmar Military government uses law as the most convenient way to govern or subdue its own people.

Question: What is the basic flaw of SPDC Laws?

Answer…The basic flaw or the mother of all the problems with the Laws of the SPDC and successive military governments in Burma is that_

  • it is run by military,

  • and they are almost uneducated,

  • inexperienced,

  • no training nor experience in management,

  • no training nor any experience in the Judiciary and Law

  • no training nor any experience in the economy

  • they have no common sense

  • they are megalomeniacs

  • intoxicated in power

  • corrupted

  • greedy

  • no proper moral and religious education

  • and are flawed in character.

The military personals are not virtue machines. Even the best of us as human beings are vulnerable to the call of the low:

  1. to greed,

  2. conceit,

  3. insensitivity,

  4. ruthlessness,

  5. the desire to show_

  • we’re in control,

  • in charge,
  • in command.

So the all powerful Myanmar military generals became megalomaniacs and autocrats”

So the problem with SPDC military government is that it is_

  • run by military

  • and not, saints

  • nor angels

  • nor technocrats

  • nor experts.

And they do much mischief. They inevitably produce a great deal of injustice, corruption and heartlessness.

Question: Is that the standard behaviour of all the powerful governments? What should we do?

Answer…The military leaders or generals in the SPDC government often get carried away with their unlimited, unchecked power and authorities.

And they don’t always even mean to. The SPDC government is like a steamroller; the force of forward motion carries them along.

There is inevitably unaccountability, and in time, often indifference about what the steamroller rolls over. Moreover, no one is looking out and being protective of what the steamroller is rolling over–

    • traditions,

    • shared beliefs,

    • individual rights,

    • old assumptions,

    • oppositions,

    • ethnic minorities,

    • religious minorities

    • and even Buddhist Monks are being rolled over today.

This is essentially, why people of Burma don’t like the SPDC government.

“Government is not reason, it is not eloquence, and it is force; like fire, a troublesome servant and a fearful master. Never for a moment should it be left to irresponsible action.

George Washington.

That government is best which governs the least.

Thomas Jefferson

Question: Could we Burmese expect the Rule of Law in the future Military promised democracy?

Answer… I don’t think so.

The Rule of Law is not practiced under the present political leadership of Sr General Than Shwe, and that we are a far cry from the day when we can even call our country a guided or disciplined democracy which SPDC is promising.

For those die-hards_

  • who are hoping against reality that

  • Myanmar Tatmadaw will bring us the much yearned for reforms,

  • and who still insist that SPDC must be given more time to fulfill its pledges,

the present ruthless crushing of the peaceful demonstrations of the monks episode is the proof that they are wrong.

I wonder why there is no international court of laws where citizens could conveniently or easily file a case against their corrupt governments like Myanmar SPDC?

Isn’t there anything anyone can do about it?

Why ASEAN, EU, UN and the rest of the worlds’ leaders could just close one eye on SPDC generals,

  • regarding or giving a lame excuse this as an internal affairs of a country

  • which they should not interfere

  • and morally corrupted greedy governments shamelessly continue trade and exploiting with the half opened remaining eye.

  • And worse of all most of them failed to help the ordinary Burmese citizens inside and outside Burma.

I could sadly see the Burmese people’s role as only performing the duty of rubber-stamping the SPDC Constitution for the permanent dominance of Military.

So the future role of nonmilitary ordinary Burmese Citizens are sure to be degraded to just confirming or approving the showcase of sham elections not unlike the elections under communists and dictators.

The SPDC is going to stream-rolled the so-called seven steps to democracy with their tanks on all the citizens and seems to be ready to sacrifice by even flattening the monks.

BURMA DIGEST: I could hear the voice of Azan for morning prayers Datuk Sri. We really thank you for giving the whole night for our dream interview.

Please kindly send my regards and heart felt thanks to the following persons_

Your Mrs, Justice Party Chief, YB Datin Sri Wan Aziza Wan Ismail for the kind (real) interview and very kind support of our Burmese opposition especially the supports on Daw Aung San Suu Kyi.

Your Justice party Deputy Chief, Encik Azmin Ali and wife, for helping our family on numerous occasions.

Encik Ahmad Azam Abdul Rahman, Chairman of the Global Peace Malaysia, for the (real) interview and numerous request to Datuk Sri, on our behalf.

DYMM (HRH) Raja Petra Raja Kamaruddin for the Free Anwar Campaign (he was my hero because he had done a lot for Datuk Sri, which I even could not or even dare not dream.)

National Laurate, Datuk Syed Ahmad Bin Jamal and wife Datin for the numerous request to Datuk Sri, on our behalf.

Your lawyer, Aasil Ahmad Anwar Ibrahim & Associates for the kind reply but short of approval.

Ms Elizabeth Wong for sending the Press Statements of President of Keadilan to me.

Kindly allow me to apologize again for writing this VIRTUAL DREAM INTERVIEWS as FICTION without prior consent from Datuk Sri and lawyers.

H. E. Datuk Sri Anwar Ibrahim… Hmm… I have to think over and talk to my lawyers what to do with your dreams. Any way, we have no much time because your dream is so long, I even hear the sound of calling for the morning prayers, let’s go to the mosque together, for the morning prayers.

So both of us went to the National Mosque, all the people including the Imam of the mosque requested DSAI to lead the morning prayers.

TQ very much DSAI to include in the prayers for Burma, all the citizens of Burma including Burmese Muslims, Rohingyas, Ethnic Minorities and refugees. My tears flow down when you remember to include the safety, health and release of Daw Suu and other political prisoners of Myanmar.

Yes, you are 100% right Datuk Sri, we have no choise, no power except for the prayers for Burma.

 

Dream Interview VI, Rule of Law

Dream Interview VI

Rule of Law

BURMA DIGEST: Could you kindly highlight about the free and independent Media?

His Excellency Datuk Sri Anwar Ibrahim…The media must be free and independent from government or other sources.

  1. Journalists and the media must be allowed to present a diversity of political views.

  2. SPDC must accept that the media contributes positively to democracy.

  3. Journalists must have an adequate access to public information.  

Question…In Myanmar, the military rulers are above the Law. Any comment?

Answer… The double standards in the implementation of law is ever present under dictatorships like Military ruled countries. It is less likely in true democracy.

One for the ruling elite like SPDC Generals, staying above all their own laws and another for the rest especially for the opposition leaders like NLD Daw Suu and all the opposition members up to their fall outs like exMIs including ex PM Khin Nyunt.

All the ordinary citizens are coerced into submission, cowardice and obedience by the Rule by the Law of Jungle or Military Laws or Martial Laws. 

Question… Could you explain the difference between the Rule of Law and Rule by Law? 

Answer… In every democracy Rule of Law is the most important fact for all the citizens.

  1. The judicial system must effectively protect human rights and democratic principles.

  2. Constitutional and legal arrangements must guarantee the democratic process in practice.    

  3. All military, police, and security forces must be subject to civilian control.    

  4. To be called a democratic country; we must enact just and fair laws for all the citizens of Burma/Myanmar.    

  5. In addition, no one must be above the law: whether he is from Military, a General, Senior General, King, President, Prime Minister, Cabinet Minister, opposition leaders or opposition party members, mixed blooded relatively new citizens or Ethnic Minority.    

  6. We could see that the progressive, longsighted Governments that always avoid or refrain from interfering  in the way of their citizens’ ability to make a living and progress will always end up rulining over the wealthiest countries.  

  7. You need to change  Myanmar/Burma to become: 

  •  
    • a more Law abiding place where just and fair Laws rule all the citizens, b.     
    • where no one is persecuted in the Kangroo or corrupt courts. c.      
    • We need to rebuild a country where “respect for human rights” are practiced and d.     
    • there is equal treatment of all the citizens” .

  8.  SPDC need to “stop the unfair permanent dominence of  Militart doctrine’, and “release the political prisoners”.

  9.  Myanmar SPDC Junta failed to realize that these minor domestic embarrassments or harassments they are committing on not only on the oppositions but also on all the  citizens of Myanmar are seen by the world as a serious crimes against humanity and actually it would surely lead to  their down fall.  

Question… Dear Datuk Sri, could you kindly explain again the differences between the Rule of Law and Rule by Law so that we could get the clearer picture?

Answer…  We need to have a clear distinction between rule of law and rule by law.     

  1. Rule of law is an intrinsically moral notion. There is a pre-written just and fair law that respects and protects the rights of each and every citizen. No one is above the law and no one should be prosecuted or persecuted by using unjust laws. 

  2. Rule by law is very different. Someone rules by law not because the law is higher than oneself but because it is convenient to do so and inconvenient not to do so.  

  3. In rule of law, the law is something the government serves.

  4. In rule by law, the government uses law as the most convenient way to govern or subdue the people. 

  5. The two chief arguments for rule by law rather than rule of law are exactly the same ones that are always used against natural law theory

    • disagreement and uncertainty in moral judgments

    • the claim that rule of law is seminal anarchy.

  6. The chief arguments against rule by law and for rule of law are exactly the same ones that are always used against the opponents of natural law theory:   

    • the question of how one can have authority without any moral basis; 

    • the claim that rule by law is seminal despotism. serious equivocation given that they tend in entirely different directions. 

Question… Datuk Sri, what are the basic principles of the Rule of Law?

Answer…  The “rule of law” embodies the basic principles of: 

  1. equal treatment of all people before the law,      

  2. fairness,     

  3. both constitutional and actual guarantees of basic human rights.      

  4. A predictable legal system with fair,  transparent, and effective judicial institutions is essential to the protection of citizens against the arbitrary use of state authority and Lawless acts of both organizations and individuals.  

Question…Do you see any common weakness in new democratic countries?

Answer…  In many states with weak or newly-emerging democratic traditions:     

  1. existing laws are not fair

  2. or are not fairly applied,     

  3. judicial independence is compromised,      

  4. individual and minority rights are not truly guaranteed, and     

  5. institutions have not yet developed the capacity to administer existing laws.

Above weak legal institutions endanger democratic reform and sustainable development in developing countries.

Question…What are the consequences of the lack of Rule of Law ?

Answer…  Without the rule of law_     

  1. the executive and legislative branches of government operate without checks and balances, 2.     
  2. free and fair elections are not possible, and 3.     
  3. civil society cannot flourish.    

  4. Civil and commercial codes that respect private property and contracts are key ingredients for the development of market-based economies.

 Question…How could we improve those new democracies?

Answer…  Legal systems must be improved under three inter-connected priority areas: 

  1. supporting legal reform,  

  2. improving the administration of justice, and

  3. increasing citizens’ access to justice.

Question…What shoul we do to safeguard against arbitrary governance.

Answer…  The principle of the rule of law is that_

 The governmental authority is legitimately exercised :

  1. only in accordance with written,
  2. publicly disclosed laws
  3. adopted and enforced in accordance with established procedure.

This principle is intended to be used as a safeguard against arbitrary governance.

On 16 November 2006, Lord Bingham of Cornhill said, in relation to the rule of law:

“The core of the existing principle is, I suggest, that all persons and authorities within the state, whether public or private, should be bound by and entitled to the benefit of laws publicly and prospectively promulgated and publicly administered in the courts.”

Hallmarks of adherence to the rule of law commonly include a clear separation of powers, legal certainty, the principle of legitimate expectation and equality of all before the law.

Samuel Rutherford was one of the first modern authors to give the principle theoretical foundations in Lex, Rex (1644), and later Montesquieu in The Spirit of the Laws (1748).

In Commonwealth law, the most famous exposition of the concept of rule of law was laid down by Albert Venn Dicey in his Law of the Constitution.

 “The rule of law is a political principle the classic exposition of which is in Dicey Law of the Constitution.

He identified three principles which together establish the rule of law:

  1. the absolute supremacy or predominance of regular law as opposed to the influence of arbitrary power; 

  2. equality before the law or i.  the equal subjection of all classes to ii.  the ordinary law of the land administered by the ordinary courts; and
  3. the law of the constitution is a consequence of the rights of individuals   as defined and enforced by the courts.”