Ignorant Americans are paying for Israel’s war crimes in-spite of gloomy economy

Ignorant Americans are paying for Israel’s war crimes 

in-spite of  gloomy economy

Maybe, just maybe, its the policies that are all screwed up. And that means looking at the top. A nation raised on the fear of the holocaust, all ready to fight. Winning votes by being victorious in war crimes.

U.S. seeks ship to move arms to Israel
The U.S. is seeking to hire a merchant ship to deliver hundreds of tons of arms to Israel from Greece later this month, tender documents seen by Reuters show.

The U.S. Navy’s Military Sealift Command (MSC) said the ship was to carry 325 standard 20-foot containers of what is listed as “ammunition” on two separate journeys from the Greek port of Astakos to the Israeli port of Ashdod in mid-to-late January.
A “hazardous material” designation on the manifest mentions explosive substances and detonators, but no other details were given.

“Shipping 3,000-odd tons of ammunition in one go is a lot,” one broker said, on condition of anonymity.

Americans, YOU are paying for all this stuff, at a time when 11 million of you have lost your jobs, and one out of every ten of you will lose your homes this year.

Continue reading

Responsible Thai generals must be punished for torturing and killing of Imam

Responsible Thai generals must be punished

for torturing and killing of Imam

BANGKOK, Jan 11 – The death of an imam while in army custody last year will present Thailand’s new government with its first test of whether it can deliver justice in the country’s troubled southern provinces.

 

On Christmas Day, a court in Narathiwat ruled that 56-year-old imam Yapa Kaseng was tortured and killed while being interrogated by soldiers in March.

The body of the Muslim community leader bore evidence of blunt force trauma, including rib fractures. His lungs were punctured, and his body was covered with bruises, and had abrasions on the back.

The death of the imam has gone down as a landmark abuse case. Rarely has anyone been held accountable for deaths in custody a long-held complaint of locals as well as non-governmental organisations and watchdog groups like the New York-based Human Rights Watch (HRW).

Continue reading

Myanmar Muslims prohibited from worshipping and reading of the Quran in residential flats

Myanmar Muslims prohibited from worshipping in residential flats

Chiang Mai (Mizzima) – Aping a recent diktat against the country’s Christian community, authorities have summoned and warned leaders of Burma’s Muslim community not to worship in residential flats.

Rangoon’s Kyauktada Township Peace and Development Council office, as they did with Christian pastors from the city, summoned Islamic leaders on the 5th of this month and warned them to halt all religious services and the reading of the Quran in residential flats. 

Continue reading

Detainees’ side of story in DVB on Malaysian Refugee Camp Riots

Detainees’ side of story in DVB on Malaysian Refugee Camp Riots

 

Riot at Malaysian immigration detention centre updates in Democratic Voice of Burma

Apr 30, 3008 (DVB)−An argument over the beating of five Burmese refugees at an immigration detention centre in Malaysia culminated in rioting and a fire started by an inmate, according to an eyewitness.

Ko Sarmi, a Burmese migrant being held at the detention centre, said the problems began earlier this month after security guards made false accusations against some of the inmates.

 

“The incident took place on the evening of 13 April after Malaysian voluntary fire brigade officials who were in charge of security at the detention centre started beating up five ethnic Chin refugees from Burma, accusing them of smoking in the camp,” he said.

 

“The people were non-smokers, but the camp officials took them into a room and started beating them up.”

The incident sparked an argument with the camp officials early the next morning.

 

“We were called in to have our regular meal at breakfast time by the camp officials, and when we saw them we demanded an explanation of why they beat up the five refugees the night before,” Ko Sarmi said.

 

“They refused to explain and instead told us to stand in a line. The argument escalated when other detainees joined in. Then people started ransacking the camp.”

 

Ko Sarmi said one of the inmates then set fire to the camp.

 

“The fire was started by an Indonesian detainee. He wrapped his shirt around a stick, soaked it in gasoline and set fire to the room underneath the cell where he was detained.”

 

Following the riot, the inmates were sent to another detention centre where Ko Sarmi said some were sold on to people smugglers.

“A few days after arriving at the new camp, the camp authorities sold about 100 of us including me to Thai human smugglers for 500 ringgit each,” he said.

 

“We were asked to pay the Thai smugglers 2100 ringgit each in order to get back to Kuala Lumpur, and 1900 ringgit to the border.”

 

Malaysian authorities have recently stepped up action against Burmese and other migrants.

Many have been arrested, while others have been forced to go into hiding in the jungle areas.

 

Reporting by Naw Say Phaw

See/read this_

Detained Myanmar Asylum seekers riots because of injustices

 

Leadership quality of the Myanmar Military Generals

 Leadership quality of  the Myanmar Military Generals

KJ John | Apr 1, 08

Modified and edited the original letter, Leadership for the times” by KJ John in the Malaysiakini .

I have edited and adapted to the Myanmar context from the original article. I hope that KJ John  and Malaysiakini could understand and forgive us for this. They should even be proud that they could contribute a very good article for the fellow Myanmar/Burmese citizens.

True leadership is_

  • the art of setting new directions
  • and then creating the environment for that vision to become possible; not just plausible.
  • Nurturing the right climate for ideas and ideals to flourish

It is just as important as the new directions set.

Follower-ship consequently is_

  • the discipline of acknowledging visionary leadership
  • and the requisite obedience to new and shared directions.

Together they make up what is called_

  • a purpose-inspired life of leadership
  • and follower-ship.

Peter Vaill, my doctoral chairperson, calls this ‘Managing as a Performing Art’ (also the title of a book).

Frankly, both models are only partially relevant under current conditions of rapid, turbulent change; when small ripples become tidal waves of change being washed in, and without any human ability to control them.

Allow me to give ‘my three sen’ worth of advice to Myanmar Military SPDC leadership on differing styles of organisational leadership models that appear to be practiced.  

Unfortunately, within Myanmar Military Generals, the current models of leadership and managing are what I have in the past referred to as ‘cat or dog loyalty models of blind obedience’.

As the Burmese saying goes_

Yae Boo Pauk Tar_ Ma Low Chin Boo.

Yae Par Dar Bae_Low Chin Dae.

Yes! In the Military_

  • the leaders never accept the excuses.
  • Orders must be obeyed and fulfilled.
  • Rank and file must be willing to sacrifice their lives on the line of duty.
  • Soldiers must be like robots.
  • If the owner/handler/player click the button, whether right or wrong button, the robort must obey like a character in the video-game.
  • No reasoning nor analysis of correctness or morality or religious views of the nature of job or consequences of the order and results need to be considered.
  • Order is order.
  • Do or die in the battle field or face the consequences of punishments or court-martialed.

Because more than 70 percent of the electorate are living in urban areas, the  governance of Myanmar would be decided on modern and urban issues. That is enough reason for a predictable and fundamental change in scenario and landscape of today’s Myanmar politics.

The information age contributed to a fundamental and radical change in people’s expectations and perceptions. Urban voters were concurrently informed, misinformed and dis-informed. But, it appears like no one from the military government either heard or really understood this.  

Today, all of that is water under the bridge in urbanised Myanmar towns. These are so-called developed states in urbanisation terms. The arrogance and abuse of power in most states and local military authorities would ensure the outcome of the coming referendum.

Models of leadership

With this as the context, allow me to reflect on the two most prevalent models of leadership visible within all organisations, whether in the corporate or political world or civil society or in the military dictator governments.  

The one demands what I call ‘the cat loyalty syndrome’.

A syndrome is almost like a theological conviction about a truth that the beholder believes in and expects from the rest of the world.

The cat loyalty model demands the symbolic and implicit obedience and loyalty of a cat to the house.

This model of leadership demands that the person is loyal to the home or the institution that one belongs to, and claims full cat-like commitment to it.  

  • Most cats are in fact comfortable in the house
  • even after the owners move out.
  • They simply can carry on with life even with the new owners.
  • To the cat, that house is its home
  • and there is little or no loyalty to the master or owner of the house.
  • Owners can come and go.

This appears to be the prevalent model of leadership in SPDC leaders, demanding absolute obedience to the Tatmadaw and its current leader. Questions over their morality and ethics are a secondary matter.

The ‘dog model of loyalty’ puts a premium on loyalty explicitly to the master, but not so much to the house or organisation. But the more important question is: who is the real master? If one served long with General Ne Win or Senior General than Shwe, then one must always be almost loyal to them, in spite of differing circumstances or different worldviews one holds.

It is a lifetime personal loyalty to the person and relationship, and not so much to the authority or the position of the person. The result is almost blind loyalty to all instructions of the master and almost zero public disagreement with that person. Any disagreement must be handled in the privacy of the relationship.

Maybe Senior General than Shwe, as a strong military-type, also expects this kind of blind loyalty from all the generals.

Under conditions of turbulence, old-style captains cannot expect blind obedience. Truth is what will help all to move forward. Under whitewater conditions of extreme turbulence, what we need is a newer model of leadership, not that of a calm captain of an ocean-going vessel.

Vaill would argue that all leadership today is currently operating under whitewater conditions. Because of the Internet and the convergence of new technologies, leadership models must change to reflect new realities. He might ask, for instance: What is the real meaning of leadership under whitewater rafting conditions?

Message for Senior General than Shwe:

Robert Greenleaf’s ‘servant leadership model’, which emulates the ‘work with me and not for me’ motto should actually be the right one to replace Than Shwe’s ‘Listen to me, obey my orders’ military doctrine. There were many good speeches and slogans but things were done wrongly on the ground.  

  • Myanmar Military should work with the people.
  • Myanmar Military should work with all the opposition groups.
  • Myanmar Military should work with the NLD including their present leaders including Daw aung San Suu Kyi.
  • Myanmar Military should work with all the Ethnic Minority groups.
  • Myanmar Military should work with all the Religious Minority groups.

Senior General, you need their cooperation, their advise, their blessings to face the whole world. Their experience can tell you the truth about what is happening on the ground.

  • You need to work with them and not ask them to work for you.
  • You need to work with them  and no need to lock them up in the jails.
  • You need to work with them  and no need to lock them up in in their houses as house arrests.
  • You need to work with them  and no need to be afraid to talk to them.
  • You need to work with them  and no need to be afraid to start a dialogue with them, discuss and negotiate with them.
  • You need to work with them  and start a  national reconciliatory process which could eventually protect you, other SPDC generals, families, friends and cronies.

They will not and cannot do this as if you refuse to allow them or rufuse to listen to them or you recognize and respect them as the valuable personalities in their own rights. And they have as much if not more experience to provide leadership under whitewater conditions.

The ‘servant leadership model’ requires one to become chairperson of the board but not try to lead like an Old Captain. The person does not table papers but listens to ideas and steers the discussion towards a consensus decision.

Peter Drucker calls this ‘wise leadership’.

My three sen worth of suggestions for Sr General Than Shwe:

  • Let the people ask any question they choose and encourage open dialogue.
  • Do not protect anyone, let each carry their own weight or sack them if need be.
  • Ask all your generals to sincerely work with you and not for you.

You must start out right with good intentions, by making everyone  in SPDC to declare their assets publicly.

The people will judge you in the coming referendum and election by what you do and not just what you say.

Integrity means both –

  • doing what you say
  • and then preaching only what you have already practiced.

Let me end with a quote from John F Kennedy, who in his first speech as US president said: “Ask not what the country can do for you but ask what you can do for the country.”  

Myanmar Tatmadaw should review both the cat and dog loyalty models, and try to distinguish how every public servant and military official can serve first the public and national interest (defined as the interest of all the people of Myanmar, not just any one group regardless of how we carve the cake).

 

Myanmar and other Political Jokes

Myanmar and other Political Jokes

Cows in Politics Explained

Some are mine but I got the original idea from here_ 

  1. Myanmar under successive military governments:  You have two cows.  The government seizes both and sells you the milk with high price. You join the underground and start a campaign of sabotage.
  2. Burma under U Nu: You have two cows. U Nu prohibited slaughtering of cows. They were sold as, “Toe Toe Thars”, by smugglers. (Toe Toe means harsh harsh, quietly, secretly. Thars means meat.)

  3. Burma under General Ne Win:  You have two cows.  Ne Win’s BSPP government seizes both and provides you with small amount of diluted milk which is a little bit spoilt.
  4. Burma under General Saw Maung’s SLORC:  You have two cows. Military government took both, promised to give back after enquiry (election) but was deposed in a coup to prevent fulfilling his promise.
  5. Myanmar under Sr General Than Shwe. You have two cows. SPDC withdraw the license to breed the cows and given one license to U Pine (ex-military association) and the remaining license goes to U Tayza.
  6. Myanmar Tatadaw in Arakan: You have two cows. Tatadaw slaughtered one to eat. Ask you to plough the army land with your remaining one cow. You are forced to pull the plough together with the remaining cow as a voluntary service.
  7. Myanmar Tatadaw in Karen State: You have two cows. Myanmar Military would negotiate, bribe one cow, named as Democratic Buddhist Cow and incite to fight your remaining cow, assassinate you or your family, raid across the fence, burn your house across the border and to destroy the Mosques.
  8. Myanmar Tatadaw in Shan State: You have two cows.  Tatmadaw would slaughter both cows, rape your village women and set your village on fire.
  9. Myanmar under General Khin Nyunt: You have two cows. Khin Nyunt’s would smile but with the sweet innocent face he would order Myanmar Military Intellgence to start a religious or racial riot against you and burn your two cows together with your house.
  10. Myanmar Chins: You have two cows. Bandage one as if wounded and put a POP on another so that they could be accepted by UNHCR to be able to export to the Western Developed countries.
  11. Myanmar Democratic secular opposition: You have two cows.  Don’t talk about racial discriminations nor equal rights. Your cows are not important they are counting their own sheeps and praying that the Burma Revolution would last forever. Then only they could continue to collect funds.
  12. A SOCIALIST:  You have two cows.  The government takes one and gives it to your neighbor.
  13. CAPITALISM, AMERICAN STYLE:  You have two cows.  You sell one, buy a bull, and build a herd of cows.
  14. BUREAUCRACY, AMERICAN STYLE:  You have two cows.  The government takes them both, shoots one, milks the other, pays you for the milk, then pours the milk down the drain.
  15. AN AMERICAN CORPORATION:  You have two cows.  You sell one, and force the other to produce the milk of four cows.  You are surprised when the cow drops dead.
  16. A JAPANESE CORPORATION:  You have two cows.  You redesign them so they are one-tenth the size of an ordinary cow and produce twenty times the milk. You then create clever cow cartoon images called Cowkimon and market them World-Wide.
  17. A CHINESE CORPORATION:  You have two cows.  You have 300 people milking them. You claim full employment, high bovine productivity, and arrest the newsman who reported on them.
  18. AN INDIAN CORPORATION:  You have two cows.  You worship both of them.
  19. A GERMAN CORPORATION:  You have two cows.  You reengineer them so they live for 100 years, eat once a month, and milk themselves.
  20. DEMOCRACY, AMERICAN STYLE:  You have two cows.  The government taxes you to the point you have to sell both to support a man in a foreign country who has only one cow, which was a gift from your government.
  21. A RUSSIAN CORPORATION:  You have two cows.  You count them and learn you have five cows. You count them again and learn you have 42 cows. You count them again and learn you have 12 cows.  You stop counting cows and open another bottle of vodka.
  22. A FRENCH CORPORATION:  You have two cows.  You go on strike because you want three cows.
  23. A BRITISH CORPORATION:  You have two cows.  They are mad.  They die. Pass the shepherd’s pie, please.
  24. AN ITALIAN CORPORATION:  You have two cows, but you don’t know where they are. You break for lunch.
  25. A BRAZILIAN CORPORATION:  You have two cows.  You enter into a partnership with an American corporation.  Soon you have 1000 cows and the American corporation declares bankruptcy.
  26. AN AMERICAN REPUBLICAN:  You have two cows. Your neighbor has none. So what?
  27. AN AMERICAN DEMOCRAT:  You have two cows.  Your neighbor has none.  You feel guilty for being successful.  You vote people into office who tax your cows, forcing you to sell one to raise money to pay the tax.  The people you voted for then take the tax money and buy a cow and give it to your neighbor. You feel righteous.

Intrigue and illness in Myanmar’s junta

Intrigue and illness in Myanmar’s junta

 

 BANGKOK – This month’s surprise announcement in Myanmar of a planned national referendum on a new constitution in May and multi-party democratic elections by 2010 are all part of Senior General Than Shwe’s game plan to hold onto power and ensure his family’s interests are secured. The question now is whether or not the junta leader’s health will hold out that long.

A major turning point in the competition occurred nearly six months ago, when Maung Aye was replaced as the head of the junta’s powerful Trade Council, right before the beginning of the August unrest. Maung Aye was also reportedly replaced as military chief during last year’s protests, where Thura Shwe Mann took charge of security arrangements, including suppression of the demonstrations, and commenced chairing crucial National Security Council meetings on Than Shwe’s orders.

Since the crackdown, however, the wheels of government have reportedly ground to a halt. “Ministers have been told directly by Than Shwe that he does not need to be consulted on any issue, other than those related to political or foreign policy issues,” said a military source, who spoke on condition of anonymity. But because officials fear making any moves that could be perceived as a challenge to Than Shwe’s power, decision-making is in gridlock, according to the source.

“There’s total inertia in [the capital] Naypyidaw. No one dares make a decision, even in regard to the smallest matters without approval from the top, which is rarely forthcoming,” a senior government official recently confided to a Western diplomat who spoke with Asia Times Online.

Read more Larry Jagan