You are on page 1of 17

The Slow Burning Genocide of

Myanmars Rohingya People

Dr Maung Zarni
Organized by The Brown Journal of World Affairs
Co-sponsored by the International Relations DUG, Development Studies
DUG, the Bengali Students Club, the Southeast Asian Studies Initiative,
South Asian Students Association, Amnesty International at Brown, and the
Watson Institute
Brown University
20 November 2017
A Picture is a Story.
Tip of the iceberg of Myanmars atrocities
captured on camera

Rohingya babies dumped and left to die

in Myanmar crisis
Sky's Alex Crawford travels to Myanmar's Rakhine State, witnessing
first-hand the military's brutal crackdown on Rohingya Muslims.
Outline of the talk
1. Who are the Rohingyas?
2. Why do Burma single them out for
brutal & systematic persecution?
3. What is the nature of persecution?
(ethnic cleansing vs GENOCIDE)
4. Is genocide/e-cleansing a conflict?
5. Rohingya militancy as trigger for
state violence??
6. What is the role of Aung San Suu
7. Geopolitics trumps Never again!
Map of Arakan or Rakhine
Borderlands Ethnic Formations
Burmas official narrative of 135 national races (vs 67 in 1968)

Colonial era censuses as administrative control (Arakanese, indicating

natives of Arakan region, irrespective of faith, ethnic and migration)

Frozen identities: identity as pure or something one was born into

De-nationalizing Rohingyas via 1982 Citizenship Act

Primary Historical Evidence of Rohingyas in pre-Burma 1798:
Destruction of a Groups identity by decree under Gen. Ne Win
Official Gov. Recognition of Rohingyas:
Myanmar Encyclopedia, 1964
& National Registration Card 1957 (U Abdul 76 years
Acts of Citizenship: civil & military services

Socialist Abdul (Age 67) Teacher and Agriculturalist Abdul (76)

The first-large scale wave
of state-directed terror against Rohingyas
Apartheid Structures of Persecution post-1982

Law, Justice System, Health, Food &

Population and Faith Control:All in One

Villages and wards as a web of security

grids (garrison zones)
Conditions designed to destroy the group

Population Control via marriage control & illegalization of fetus

Destruction of Cultural and Intellectual Class (80 % illiteracy)
Denial of access to nutritional opportunities (racial feeding)
80,500 children under age 5 (WFP)
Denial of essential health services
(1 doc: 158,000 Rohingya vs 1 doc: 685 non-Rohingya)
Infant Mortality rate: 4 times higher than national average
Laundry list of rights violations
Basic Rights Abuses with IMPUNITY (freedom of movement, for
forced labour
sexual violence
summary execution
mass arrest
Symbolic, Psychological & Physical Violence (IDENTITY destruction)
Emerging Buddhist Wahabism

Not all Buddhists agree with Sitagu Sayadaws militant message

Dont worry King, its a little bit of sin. Dont worry, Sitagu Sayadaw
said. Even though you killed millions of people, they were only one
and a half real human beings.
Sitagu Monk to the School of Commando, Training, 30 Oct 2017
Perpetrators: Monks and Generals
Nobel Laureate and Cronies, Global Players