Magazine Article Minimizes ABSDF 1992 Crimes Against Humanity in Burma

14 Apr

Magazine Article Minimizes ABSDF 1992 Crimes Against Humanity in Burma

Ko Bo Bo during an interview about being held and tortured by ABSDF in 1992

 “They
have apologized for that part of their history.”
“Emma
Leslie, head of the CSPS [Centre for Peace and Conflict Studies, a
Cambodia-based NGO], told The Irrawaddy that the book helps to explain how the
ABSDF “carried their ideals, visions and values through their struggle.”
For
some balance before you read further about All Burma Student’s Democratic Front (ABSDF) watch this portion of an interview with a person who was in the  ABSDF camp in
Kachin State, Burma in 1992. He was tortured and witnessed ABSDF atrocities.
Actually, he survived the atrocities. It’s a harrowing and horrifying account,
ever so brief yet he explains more than enough to know that ABSDF, no matter how they started out, was far from being a romantic student army fighting a brutal oppressive government.
You
can watch the 18 minute interview excerpt here:
* The video will not load but it will be posted in December 2014
ABSDF may have begun with desperate idealism in seeking a force to gain political
freedom while being held down and oppressed by a sadistic
totalitarian government. But they turned as vicious and horrific as their oppressors, and in some cases possibly worse. Once
the atrocities started, how they “carried their ideals, visions and
values through their struggle” is prologue to a history no less sinister than the one they opposed. 

ABSDF leaders, journalists or NGO’s currently speaking on
behalf of ABSDF’s history can possibly dismiss what they’ve done in support of
their “ideals, values and visions” but can anyone justify the stomach wrenching and savage atrocities
ABSDF is known to have committed against innocent people seeking salvation from Burma’s military government? Voices of the families of the innocent young students ABSDF killed must be included in this collection of stories. They were helpless to stop their children from protesting the government only to have their children killed by people considered allies. Healing should include all parties involved in the history of ABSDF.The history
of ABSDF is one that should certainly be told. But questions must be answered in light of the forthcoming revelations so future generations of Myanmar people can learn from the ways ABSDF failed . 

  • At
    what point does acquiring the zest and zeal for committing horrifying crimes
    make the fight for freedom one worthy of winning that freedom? 
  • What kind of
    leaders would ABSDF have been if they had won? 
  • More curious to me, what does
    Aung San Suu Kyi think of the ABSDF crimes against humanity and therefore their
    credibility in struggle to gain Democracy for Burma? 
  • And what does she think of
    their contribution to the cause? 

These are such questions must be included in conversations about ABSDF and this book about to be released. 

You
can read the article Irrawaddy article here:
Rightfully, Emma Leslie points out this in her article: 
“The
book discusses some dark moments in the group’s history, including a mass
killing in 1992 known as the “Kachin Massacre.” In February of that year,
dozens of ABSDF members in northern Burma’s Kachin State were murdered by their
own comrades after being accused of serving as spies for the junta. Since 2011,
family members of the victims have decried the killing and called for justice.”
Unfortunately, there were still ABSDF members laying land mines in Karen state in 2010. You
can read about it in one of my earlier posts from 2011 called 2011 New Year in Chaing Mai.  

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