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Date: 17 May, 1995

An Open letter to the people of Thailand 

1. I am one of the many Burmese who had taken refuge in Thailand
and survived the brutal persecution of the murderous Burmese
government. Keeping deep in my heart this unforgettable gratitude
I owe to the kingdom of Thailand I, herewith, extend this open
letter to the Thai people, including the responsible Thai
authorities, in view of maintaining the dignity of my former host
country and building a true and long lasting friendship between
Thailand and my country, Burma.

2. Every nations has its own national characteristic, ways of
thinking and doing things that could, in many cases neither be
easily explained nor understood by outsiders. For this reason
just a few years ago I was thinking of exposing the true
colour(undeclared policy) of the Burmese military junta towards

   a. Thailand's so-called "Constructive Engagement policy",
which was created with the view of gaining economics benefit was
at its peak.   
   b. The true colours of the Burmese dictators were more
difficult for the outside world to comprehend as their newly re-
established power base was not yet strong.

3. As the military junta in Burma is brutally attacking the
ethnic minorities along the Thai-Burma border areas and
repeatedly offending Thailand's national dignity and its
sovereignty. I was not at all surprised of the extend o arrogance
and disrespect towards the Kingdom of Thailand shown by the
Slorc. Actually evidences inside Burma have already indicated
that the Slorc has systemically prepared for such insult since
the end of 1991.

4. although the Burmese people are deprived of their rights to
openly express their opinion, it has been quite obvious that they
appreciate the sympathy of the Thai people towards them. At the
same time they are extremely unhappy with the policies of the
authorities in Thailand, which are in favour of their inhuman
oppressors. This has  been briefly expressed in the Thai media by
Dr. U Yewata Dama, the Burmese Buddhist monk who acts as a
mediator between the Slorc and Daw Aung San Suu Kyi. Moreover,
the experience of the Burmese illegal exiles in Thailand who have
been forced to return to Burma further strengthen the bitterness
of the Burmese people towards the authorities in Thailand.

5. Taking from the above-stated opinion of the Burmese people the
dictators have, since 1991, been systematically and cunningly
planning to divert the Burmese peoples pent up disappointment
toward them. The tactics being used are as follow:-

a) To arouse among the people, especially among the soldiers in
the Burmese Army, a contemptuous attitude towards Thailand by
applying any available means.

b) To make the Burmese people believe that Burma does not need to
care or afraid of Thailand as long as the military is in power,

c) To put into the minds of the Burmese people that they should
better cooperate with the dictators in Burma as they have no hope
of cooperation from Thailand.

One example could be seen in the Arakan State, where the military
junta has successfully used similar tactics to woo the support of
the local people. Exploiting the disappointment of the Arakanese
on the illegal immigrants from Bangladesh the Slorc has brutally
persecuted the Muslim minorities and further violated the
sovereignty of the neighbouring Bangladesh. In this way the
military managed to recruit thousands of soldiers from the Arakan
State in the name of protecting their state from the "external

6. In order to bring into light the dirty tactics employed by the
SLORC, I would like to expose one of their many tactics as an

In Burma the MIS(Military Intelligence Service) has been
publishing a magazine, Myet-Khin-Thit( The New Pasture), which
especially widely circulated in the army. It is understood among
the people that this magazine publish libellous articles
discrediting the Burmese democratic opposition forces as well as
the prestige of other democratic countries, including Thailand.

An article titled "The glory of Burma's Ba-Yin Naung" appeared in
one of the issues of Myet-Khin-Thit was especially demanding to
the Thai Royal family, Instead of writing about the Burmese king
Ba-Yin Naung, who invaded Thailand during the feudal past of 
Burma, the article outrightly insults the Thai Royal family by
using Burmese expression extremely disgraceful to the Royal

Moreover, if one carefully reads the article that appeared in the
1993 December issue, Volume 44 of the Myet-Khin-Thit magazine one
can clearly notice the following points.-

a] The article outrightly insults Sondet Phra Maha Chakrapat the
King of Thailand . However , the photos and English expressions
used in the articles were carefully chosen and written in such a
way that a would -be Thai reader who might have come across the
article would have an impression that the article is just about
the history of the Thai monarchy.

b] Emphasis was made in the article that [ in Burmese] the king
of Thailand pledged his allegiance to the Burmese King for
generations to come . " It implies that the pledged is still
valid up to the present King of Thailand and that Thailand is
obliged an implicit obedience towards the Burmese rulers of

c] More remarkable is that this emphasis stated above has been
unnecessarily repeated again and again . The sentence .........
" the King of Thailand pledged his allegiance to the Burmese King
for generations to come " was repeated altogether nine times in
the article.!

d] A closer study of the article reveals that the first emphasis
of the above sentence appeared on page 27 [2+7=9] and the ninth
and last one appeared on page 36 [3+6=9]. The compound numbers of
the first and last pages are nine and it appeared nine times.

Such articles and emphasis might be unimportant or rather
ridiculous for the non -Burmese but in Burma everybody knows that
the superstitious dictator Ne Win believes the number NINE to be
his lucky number . He used this number whenever he intends to
crush his enemies and thus to ensure victory . Although the
Burmese dictators are extremely superstitious and their actions
seem to be so ridiculous, the above article and many others that
have had appeared in Myet-Khin-Thit vividly expose the true
colour and the hidden policy of the power holders in Rangoon
towards Thailand.

It is noteworthy how the dictators curry favour with Thailand
when the SLORC was condemned by the whole world after the 1988
uprising and how it gradually becomes arrogant towards Thailand
as its power base gets stronger. While showing a friendly gesture
on the SLORC is actually secretly planning something vicious
against Thailand .

Furthermore, it should be clearly understood that a regime that
can gleefully murder its own indigenous peoples just for the sake
of keeping itself in power will never respect the life and
dignity of other countries.

And , ironically , the strategy of the SLORC is to exploit the
discontent of the Burmese people towards Thailand's official
policy -the so called " constructive engagement " and its
consequences like the exploitation and destruction of the
environment , the dam and gas pipe line projects and Thailand's
cooperation with the SLORC that has been the underlying causes of
human miseries along the Thai-Burma border areas etc. For
example, the SLORC has long been arrogant towards Thailand in
handling the many complicated issues and disputes along the Thai-
Burma border , and when the KNU splinter group like DKBA joined
the SLORC they managed to mould the former to adopt the same
arrogant policy and as a consequence it violates the Thai
territory at its will.

The strange thing is Thailand's reactions despite the SLORC's
repeated show of arrogance and insult against Thailand and the

a] Deportation by force of the Burmese students regardless of
repeated appeals from the international community not to do so,

b] Despite many years of good relationship with the ethnic
nationalities along the Thai-Burma border that has been the
source of economic boom in these areas, Thailand has blocked
their supply lines whenever the SLORC asked them to do so,

c] In many occasions during armed conflicts between the SLORC and
the ethnic minorities the Thai Army withdrew even from their own
territory , from which they were supposed to protect the
sovereignty of Thailand , whenever the SLORC requested them to do
so , 

d] Recently when the DKBA violated the Thai territories ,
Thailand's low profile reactions against the DKBA caused
disagreement among the Thai military authorities.

In this way Thailand is only supporting the SLORC's
disinformation campaign to make the Burmese people believe that
" the Thai King has pledged allegiance to the Burmese King for
generations to come ." Moreover , Thailand is investing negative
consequences that will endanger its future.  
The SLORC has even been sucessful in making some Thai authorities
believe that the problems along the Thai-Burma border are caused
by the refugees. These authorities unfortunately fall into the
clever trick of the SLORC by blaming the victims instead of
addressing the main cause of the refugee problems which
inescapably is the SLORC's inhumane treatment of its own people .

The military dictators have, in fact , intentionally prolonged
the civil war in Burma so that the Army could always play an
important role in Burma's politics and thus benefit themselves
from the never-ending civil war by draining the defense budget to
line their own pockets. However , after the 1988 mass uprising ,
as the armed ethnic nationalities and the democratic forces from
within Burma reached an agreement to a certain extent , this
unity of the two forces became a big threat to their long-term
survival . Thus , the civil war became a liability instead of an
asset . In order to make the pendulum swing towards their own
favour the acceleration of the civil war must be reduced in
whatever way possible , if not totally stopped.

At the same time as the civil war is reduced and the threat of
their internal enemy minimized , the role of the Army must not be
diminished , anyway . For this purpose the SLORC needs to create
a certain level of hostile atmosphere with some neighbouring
countries like Thailand and Bangladesh , whose policies towards
the SLORC are either liberal of flexible. In this way the Burmese
people will always feel the Even if the refugee problems were
resolved, the SLORC would keep on violating the sovereignty of
Thailand one way or the other.

These notions are not wishful thinkings and the Thai people and
authorities could better understand these facts by carefully
monitoring the SLORC - controlled mass medium such as the radio
broadcasting, the TV programmes and periodicals in which the
SLORC is repeatedly disinforming the Burmese people about
Thailand's " dishonest conspiracy against Burma."


Particularly, it is the duty of the responsible authorities of
Thailand and the Thai people in general to determine to what
extent Thailand should compromise between their long term
national dignity and short term economic gains . As for me , this
open letter is being extended to the entire Thai people,
including the responsible Thai authorities , with serious concern
that dishonest policies without regard to long term interest may
bring about a destructive consequences for both countries
[Thailand and Burma] in the long run . Enquiries for further
comprehensive discussion or detail and wider information as
regard to this open letter could be made at the address below.


(signed here)
Maung Kyaw
[Information and publicity Section] 
Burma Youth Volunteer Association /Germany 
C/O Burma Buro
P.O.Box 210165
Koln Germany 50527
Tel:& Fax: [05681]1401
           [+49 5681 1401]