Misleading outsiders: the Burmese constitution-to-be

A reader e-mailed me about The Myanmar Times article about the National Convention just now. The journalist, Thet Khaing euphemizes the National Convention. He writes:

The Secretary-1 of the State Peace and Development Council, Lieutenant-General Thein Sein, said last week that the successful completion of the National Convention would be a victory for the first step of the road map and would pave a way for restoring civilian government. The approval of the constitution in a referendum will be followed by democratic parliamentary elections.

Restoration of civilian government? Democratic parliamentary elections? I wish.

I wonder why the media has not criticized the constitutional militarization of the Burmese government under the draft constitution. Kudos to the Alternative ASEAN Network on Burma for bringing this attention to matter, because I can only do so much. It took me just about all day to figure out how the Burmese government will function under the constitution. I was fuming, reading about how invasive the Armed Forces will be in the constitution.

Update: Human Rights Watch took note of this as well. Read its observations here.

Update 2: The Irrawaddy reports that National Convention delegates have been told not to deviate from the guidelines agreed upon at previous sessions (including the 104 basic principles on government structure, including the clauses on the military’s stakes in the government), and that if they do, legal action will be taken. This dampens the chances that delegates will be able to do much to significantly modify the constitution, if they have intentions to do so.

One thought on “Misleading outsiders: the Burmese constitution-to-be

  1. Sasha says:

    I found your blog by an accident and how lucky I am! I am currently working on a film about a Burmese Freedom Fighter who lives in Ithaca, NY. Please check out website at honoringhome.blogspot.com. i wanted to thank you for your blog and for the useful information you post and was hoping that you find some time to look at our website and tell us what you think. We are working together with the US Campaign for Burma and the International Campaign for freedom of Aung San Suu Kyi and Burma. Cheers for now and hope I hear from you soon!


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