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BurmaNet News: #241
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Date: Sat, 30 Sep 1995 06:52:16 -0700
------------------------ BurmaNet ------------------------
"Appropriate Information Technologies, Practical Strategies"
The BurmaNet News: SPECIAL EDITION: OCTOBER 27 CAMPAIGN
September 29, 1995
CALL FOR ACTIONS: U.S. CORPORATIONS OUT OF BURMA
LIST OF ACTIONS FOR NATIONAL STUDENT ACTION DAY
STRATEGIC GOALS FOR AN ONGOING CAMPAIGN
CALL FOR ACTIONS (OCTOBER 27, 1995)
National Student Action Day
U.S. CORPORATIONS OUT OF BURMA
One month from today (Friday, October 27, 1995), university student action
groups throughout the United States will initiate strategies nationally to
terminate U.S. corporate funding of the State Law and Order Restoration
Council (SLORC), Burma's military dictatorship.
Burma is a Southeast Asian nation of 40 million people held hostage at gunpoint
by SLORC armed criminals. The United Nations, Amnesty International, and
Human Rights Watch call SLORC a major human rights violator in the world.
Despite the recent release of Burma's popular democracy leader and 1991
Nobel Peace Prize Laureate, Aung San Suu Kyi, (after six years of unlawful
detention), thousands of political prisoners remain in captivity. Aung San
Suu Kyi said: "I have been released. That is all. Nothing has changed."
The International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) recently closed its
office in Rangoon after having failed to negotiate access to Burma's
detention centers with SLORC.
U.S. CORPORATIONS BANKROLL SLORC.
THEY MUST STOP.
We, Free Burma Coalition in the United States, demand immediate withdrawal
of U.S. Corporations such as the LA-based oil giant Unocal, Texaco, ARCO,
and PepsiCo from Burma unconditionally.
The Free Burma Bill ( #S1092) sponsored by Senator Mitch McConnell
(R-Kentucky) is currently being considered at the level of the United States
Congress after having passed the U.S. Senate on September 21, 1995 as an
amendment to the Foreign Operations Appropriation Bill.
Therefore, we declare October 27, 1995 "National Student Action Day for a
Free Burma", in order to terminate U.S. Corporate funding of SLORC.
We invite you to join hands with us, Free Burma Coalition, in our fight
against corporate greed and injustice. The U.S. corporations are among the
top investors in Burma following Britain, France, Singapore, Thailand, and
Already Harvard, Stanford, Wisconsin, UCLA, Georgetown, Washington,
Brandeis, Penn State, Columbia, Cornell, Berkeley, Colorado, Northwestern,
and many others have committed to this October 27 National Student Action
Day for a Free Burma.
Key contacts for further information:
Htun Aung Gyaw
Cho Cho Win
LIST OF ACTIONS FOR NATIONAL STUDENT ACTION DAY FOR
A FREE BURMA
Here is a list of actions we could take for National Student Action Day for
a Free Burma. This is meant to be only suggestive. Please by all means
take your own initiatives.
a). Give your group a name (e.g., Free Burma Coaltion, Corporate
Withdrawl from Burma, etc.) You may wish to register with the Student
Organization Office on your at your university. That'll entitle your group
to student funds and other rights.
b). Enlist support from fellow activists from other campus groups
as well as from your community. Usually Labor, Human Rights, Environ-
mental, Women's Rights, and other area-specific groups are potential allies.
c) Announce it to your classes, and ask your friends to follow suit.
Chalk on the sidewalks about the event. Don't forget activists cannot live
d) Hold a pre-campaign kick-off meeting. Create a mailing list
and an info sheet. (need help??) Contact Simon Billennes: his email is
simon_billenness@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx Call him at (800) 548 5684 x 225
e) Show our campaign introduction video (we'll be sending you
those once we get your snail mail addresses) to those not well-informed
about Burma's situations.
f) Go to any public event and try to say a few words about the Oct.
27 Demonstration. Provide info on how people can get in touch with you.
2) Media Campaign
a). Find out who covers student-intiated political events in your
campus paper/s. Keep him/her informed about your group's actions (where,
when, and what).
b) Contact local radio and TV station/s and see if they would be
interested in doing a news article, interview, announcement, etc. on Burma
in the context of our Oct. 27 Campaign. This is easier at places where they
have alternative community-access stations. But you can try the mainstream
stations as well.
c) Contact local and/state newspapers, journals, magazines, etc.
to see if they will publish a brief opinion editorail/ letters to the editors, etc.
RE: Oct. 27 national campaign.
d) Be sure to write press releases and send them out to all
available media in your locality.
e) Post every single news release and/coverage on the Net. Larry
Dohrs from Seattle Campaign for Burma will take care of them.
His email: dohrs@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
f) Contact Democratic Voice of Burma, Oslo, Norway. Ko Aye
Chan Naing is the contact person who is following the development of Oct. 27
fax and phone: 47 22 36 25 25 (if urgent, call or fax them).
g) Contact Dr. Christina Fink
She is the BurmaNet Coordinator and she and Larry can coordinate on
media coverage of our campaign in the newspaper in Thailand.
Her email: christin@xxxxxxxxxx
3) Possible Actions
a) Try to get a statement from the office of local Senator or
b) Have a Burma Table at a public area during high traffic hours
(like lunch hours or in-between class breaks.
c) Depending on the stength of your group, decide if you can hold
a candle light vigil for the political prisoners in Burma.
d) Compose a song, a poem, etc. about oppression in Burma, US
Corporate involvement, tyranny, and struggle for freedom
e) Photo exhibit (if you have access to photos of 1988 massacres,
Aung San Suu Kyi, Environmental destruction caused by Slorc and foreign
investors, slave labor)
The organization to contact for the acquisition of visual materials is:
Sue Wheat, Burma Researcher, Tourism Concern, Southlands College,
Wimbledon, Parkside, London, SW 19 5NN UK. Fax (0181)-944-6583 or Tel:
f) Have a speaking event. Burmese students, Burma activists, area
specialists such as Southeast Asian historians, political scientists,
anthropologists, geographers, etc. are potential speakers.
g) Do the Pepsi Dump in public areas. Be sure to publicize the
event in advance (See the above-section for media).
h) Symbolic protest and/or destruction of SLORC flag, logos and
effigies in the presence of press.
i) Hand out leaftlets pertaining to the event, the situations in
Burma that have led us to launch this campaign. (Simon Billenness can
provide info on the developments.)
j) Show documentary videos at your Student Union.
4) Post Oct. 27 Event
a) Try to retain the participating supporters for our on-going struggle.
Whatever help they can provide us with in post-Oct. 27 will be of value.
b) Try to provide them with an info packet with activist
organizations focused on Burma.
The possibilities are endless and we'll leave it up to you in terms of your
Free Burma Coalition (University of Wisconsin)
STRATEGIC GOALS FOR AN ONGOING CAMPAIGN
(from Simon Billenness, FRDC)
1. The college adopts a policy of not buying goods or services from
companies doing business in Burma. (This is known as a 'selective purchasing
2. The college adopts a policy of voting its endowment shares in favor of
shareholder resolutions that ask companies to report on their operations in
Burma or withdraw from Burma.
3. The college awards Aung San Suu Kyi an honorary degree.
4. The college awards scholarships to Burmese refugees.
5. The city and the state in which the college is located passes a law
barring its purchasing managers from buying goods or services from companies
doing business in Burma. (This is known as a 'selective purchasing law')
6. The state's Senators agree to co-sponsor Senator Mitch McConnell's "Free
Burma Act" (S1092) which would impose tough economic sanctions on Burma.
For lists of companies doing business in Burma, contact:
Investor Responsibility Research Center
1350 Connecticut Avenue, NW
Washington, DC 20036-1701
(202) 833 0700
Council on Economic Priorities
30 Irving Place
New York, NY 10003
(212) 420 1133
For information on how selective purchasing policies and laws work, contact:
Franklin Research & Devleopment Corp.
711 Atlantic Avenue
Boston, MA 02111
(617) 423 6655 x225
Progressive Asset Management
1814 Franklin Street
Oakland, CA 94612
(510) 834 3722
For the latest information on Senator McConnell's "Free Burma Act" (S1092),
contact Phil Robertson: reaproy@xxxxxxxxxxxxx