Sitmone is back ! (Together with Daw Suu)

Sitmone is back ! Read here_http://sitmone.wordpress.com/2010/11/18/lwin-moe-kyaw-thu-and-democracy-of-burma/

I consider most of the readers to this post as non Burmese. Thus I decided to introduce Lwin Moe and Kyaw Thu, to those who are unfamiliar with Burmese celebrities, before continue writing the post.

Both Lwin Moe and Kyaw Thu are Burmese celebrities. Both of them are and were actors, directors, and photographers. But Kyaw Thu is no more in entertainment industry of Burma, as his movies were banned by Military Junta for last three years.

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The Return of Burma’s Monks

                                                                                    TIME

The Return of Burma’s Monks

Friday, May. 16, 2008

By A TIME CORRESPONDENT IN BURMA

Rangoon travel agent Chin Chin used to take tourists to a nearby Irrawaddy delta town famous for its pottery. But the vast waterworld of rivers and rice fields that stretched beyond it was a foreign land to her until Cyclone Nargis and its horrific aftermath. On Thursday, Chin Chin and her friends bought rice and water, loaded it on a truck, and drove deep into the delta. She was shocked by what she saw: roads lined with hundreds of cold and hungry villagers, disregarded by their own government, who had walked for an hour from their broken villages to beg from passing motorists.

“They were mostly housewives,” recalls Chin Chin, who goes by the nickname. “They told me, ‘Rice is a must, so it’s worth standing in the rain for three or four hours to get some.’ They didn’t even have a change of clothes.” Fighting back her tears, Chin Chin gave out rice and listened to stories of families torn apart and villages destroyed. “It was piteous,” she says. “I really sympathized with them. We didn’t see any aid from government or foreign groups.”

Chin Chin belongs to a burgeoning homegrown relief effort which is capturing Burmese from all walks of life. Students and shopkeepers, medics and models — thousands of people have now donated money, food or services to Nargis victims. Hundreds like Chin Chin are delivering aid themselves, while privately run local charities are reorienting their operations around cyclone relief.

While they continue to make it difficult for foreigners to offer aid, Burma’s generals welcome the help of their own people — at least officially. “Myanmar people’s generosity is amazing,” marvels a recent article in The New Light of Myanmar, a state-run newspaper.* Privately, however, they must be getting nervous. Ordinary Burmese are horrified by the suffering of their compatriots and angry at the junta’s inadequate attempts to alleviate it. Their humanitarian efforts could well spark a political one, especially as it also involves Buddhist monks, who last September led the biggest anti-government protests Burma had seen for nearly 20 years.

Private donors have faced some government restrictions. Those who arrive in the towns have been asked to hand over their relief supplies to local authorities for distribution. Instead, many are reportedly storing the goods with sympathetic locals and secretly distributing them by themselves. The junta doesn’t want foreigners distributing aid in the delta, but neither does it feel comfortable with Burmese distributing it. “The government is scared that relief workers will get involved in politics,” says a co-founder of one Burmese relief group.

Some are involved already. Celebrated actor Kyaw Thu, who was jailed for a month for joining last September’s demonstrations, runs the Free Funeral Services Society, a private charity offering free cremations for the poor. It is now operating its own relief effort, with volunteers at its Rangoon headquarters loading up delta-bound trucks with donated goods.

Another anti-junta stalwart is comedian Zaganar (the name means “Tweezers”), also briefly jailed for his role in last year’s protests. Zaganar and his celebrity friends have bought food and medical supplies for Nargis victims and are using their names to raise more funds. Both the disaster and the grassroots response to it are unprecedented in Burma. “I think there will be political consequences,” he says. “People are very angry with the government.”

The monks are also on the move again. Buddhist temples and monasteries have always played a central role in helping the needy in Burma (as, in this religiously and ethnically diverse country, have churches, mosques and Hindu temples). After the cyclone, monks led small-scale relief efforts into the delta, the distinctive multicolored flags of their faith fluttering from cars and small trucks. Monks from well-known monasteries in Mandalay and elsewhere in Burma are either in the delta or heading there, while in Pakkoku — the Irrawaddy town near Mandalay where last year’s protests originated — their brethren are reportedly soliciting donations for cyclone victims. Shwe Pyi Hein Monastery, which already runs a free clinic in Rangoon, has dispatched five volunteer doctors to the disaster area, who are treating more than 100 people every day.

Despite the participation of thousands of Burmese, the impact of this homegrown relief effort will always limited, admits Zaganar. “We deliver our supplies by road because we cannot afford a boat,” he says. “But most victims live close to the water. We cannot get through to them.” He says Burma desperately needs more boats and helicopters from abroad. Not even the nation’s richest private donors — who include junta cronies like tycoon Tay Za, who was put on a U.S. sanctions list last year — have the means or expertise to meet even a fraction of the needs in far-flung delta areas.

Say Young Sone Anyein, video 1 to 6

Say Young Sone Anyein,

video 1 to 6

You Tube Video source through Niknayman’s blog ( thank you Ko Niknayman for the videos)

We like to praise the courage of the Comedians after watching the Jokes of the Anyein performance , which is usually combined with the traditional dance with the jokes.

 

However the Jokes made by the famous comedians, Godzilla, King Kong,and the others make all of us laughing at the same times feel deep sorrow as we all know that these comedians were crying in their heart while making the Jokes to express the feeling for the 50 millions Burmese, who’s mouths were sealed by the Military Junta.

For the non Burmese readers I am unable to translate their jokes as they smartly and bravely used the Myanmar Language, Culture and tradition with current situation of Burma in indirect words. Myanmar Language is difficult to translate in its true essence as meaning may change with different intonation.

Following is my favourite quote regarding humor and the fight for democracy which was originally from Irrawaddy On-line.

Sit Mone

VCD Political Comedy

Draws Laughter in Rangoon

By Shah Paung
December 21, 2007
The generals who run Burma don’t like it when the joke’s on them, but political satire and humor are alive in military-ruled Burma.

A popular VCD depicting a traditional anyein performance is now selling like hot cakes in Burma. An anyein is like a variety show with comedians, singing and dancing.

The performance took place at Myaw Zin Gyun near Rangoon’s lake Kan Daw Gyi on November 24.

Well-known comedians including Godzilla, King Kong and Kyaw Htoo and four comedians known as “Thee Lay Thee” performed live in spite of a warning from authorities.

Before going on stage, Godzilla was asked to sign a document saying he would not make political jokes.

The comedian troupe is known as “Say Young Sone” (The Colorful).

The comedians quickly ignored the authorities and began cracking jokes about the military and the September uprising, drawing laughter and cheers from the audience.

The comedians targeted the September uprising, the regime’s municipal policy, the junta-backed Union Solidarity Development Association, religion and UN envoy Ibrahim Gambari.  

A VCD of the performance is now widely available in Rangoon despite a ban imposed by the government.
 
One youth in Rangoon said that since last week the VCD has been on sale on the streets. He said he bought 10 copies to share with his friends.

One of the most popular bits is when two comedians portray UN Special Envoy Ibrahim Gambari and Minister of Information Brig-Gen Kyaw Hsan, who is dubbed as “Comical Ali.”

Kyaw Hsan begins touching the legs of Gambari—the duo then gradually begin to touch mouths, eyes, ears and heads.

Gambari finally says he knows what Kyaw Hsan’s up to.

“This man does not know about “Myanmar!” [Burma],” says Kyaw Hsan.

Finally, the two stand up and can not touch each other any more.

“Your dollars are falling out!” says Kyaw Hsan, pointing to the floor. 

Gambari quickly bends over and picks up a US dollar. Kyaw Hsan kicks Gambari in the rear, shouting “This is Myanmar!”

Recently, the UN special envoy’s budget of more than $800,000 was approved for 2008 to work toward national reconciliation. The Nigerian diplomat has a Burmese nickname, “kyauk yu pyan,” which means “one who takes gems and then leaves.”

The performance also touched on Bagan Airline, which is  owned by Burmese business tycoon Tay Za.

Snr-Gen Than Shwe was satirized as a man who acted like a king and who treated his “servants” (comedians) like slaves. The servants finally punished the king by beating him. 

The Norway-based Democratic Voice of Burma began broadcasting the VCD performance on its satellite television network on Thursday.