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Poli Sci 3LC3 - Jan 30 2014

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Political Science
Netina Tan

Started on: 01/30/2014 C LASS N OTES FOR : P OLI S CI 2J03 McMaster University, Fall 2013 T HURSDAY , JANUARY 30, Y Economy: One of the poorest countries in the world - Lifting of economic sanctions  Better economic - Monetary Unit: 1 Kyat - In 2000 there were 25% of the population living below the poverty line - In 2007 there were 32.7% of the population living below the poverty line - Unemployment at around 5% - Labour force 70% agricultural - Exports include Teak, pulses, beans, prawns, fish, rice, opium, jade, oil and gas - More privatization of state owned enterprises - There has been a gradual liberalization of agriculture products Military: State peace development council (SPDC) - Former head of state: general Than Shwe - Current head of state: General pres. Thein Sein - State, peace and development council since 1997. - Historical legacy in the bloody struggle for independence - No Qualms of using repression - Guardian or predatory actor? o The perception of the military has changed due to some of the way in which some of the generals have abused their power. o The Military is seen as the best way to get power and the most stable way to maintain a livelihood for their families. o Repression in the AAAincident  Military and the role in maintaining internal security  General Thura Shwe Man What is a military regime? - Aregime which a group of officers holds power, determines who will lead the country and exercises influence over policy (not only the leader but the ruling elites belong to the military / junta members // senior officers) “Old” and “New” Mil professionalism - Samuel Huntington’s “old” professionalism o Military officers professionalism (Expertise; social responsibility; Corporateness) in managing and applying violence = objective civilian control where the military is “political sterile and neutral” (Vs. subjective civilian control) - Alfred Stepans “new professional” o The military has new interpretation of its role; focus on internal rather than external security - Amos Perlmutter: Praetornism (Arbitrator / Ruler Types) o Occurs when civilian gov’t is seen as a illegitimate/ corrupt; military takes over to focus on internal order - Is a good military regime? The SPDC Angie © McMaster University 1 Fall 2014 Started on: 01/30/2014 Repression in 1980s - 8 August 1988  “8888”: Pro-democratic movement, people’s revolt against Burma Socialist Programme Party (BSPP), Soldiers shot the crowd, killing 3,000 - As a result of massive economic crisis at this time there was a large wave of pro-democratic movement - 1988  General Ne Win resigns but declares that “When the army shoots, it shoots to kill” appointed Sein Lwin “Butcher of Rangoon” to head new government - We often associate the military regime with this - The military was accused of being heavy handed and killed thousands of people - 1990 Landslide win for NLD 82% of seats NLD out of power - ArrestedASSK (Aung San Suu Kyi) - Symbol of Freedom Aung San Suu Kyi: Symbol of “freedom” - Daughter of General Aung San - Leader of opposition national league of democracy - Won by a landslide in 1988 election but victory was not recognized - Symbol of democracy - Advocates NON-VIOLENTAPPROACH - House arrest for 14 of the past 20 - Nobel peace prize in 1991 - Widely respected internationally - Advocates Non-Violent approach - Lobbied for economic sanctions against Burma - August 2009, convicted for violating the terms of house arrest Burma: Human rights problems - Repression and climate of fear - Political prisoners - Child labour - Lack of media freedom (freedom house) - Rape as a weapon of war against ethnic minority groups - Suppression of ethnic minorities - Ethnic cleansing of Rohingya (Arakan state) - Anti-Muslim abuses - Legal setbacks // fragility of reforms Sectarian violence - Conflicts between Rakhine Buddhists and Rohingya Muslims - Between ethnic minority groups of different religious affiliations - KEY PROBLEMS: Different ethnic minority groups have not come to terms with living with each other. - 150,000 Internally displaced - Violence in Shan State Burma’s 2010 General elections: Farce or a step towards democracy? - Problems o Were the military regime suddenly after 2 decades willing to have an election and have opposition parties to contest seats in parliament o 20 General resigned to run as candidates for the military-backed political party union
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