Saturday, February 23, 2013


AND PEACE PROCESS IN MYANMAR In a landmark talks between the Myanmar government and the United Nationalities Federal Council (UNFC) held at Chiang Mai on 20 Feb 2013, the government, perhaps for the first time, officially agreed to initiate a political dialogue with the ethnics after six decades of civil war. “This is the beginning. They (ethnic groups) see that a political dialogue must be facilitated in order to solve these problems. But we didn’t manage to make it happen under the previous governments” said Aung Min, the Chief Negotiator, at a press conference after the meeting. 
Till date, the government has entered into ceasefire agreements with 10 armed groups which have only resulted in suspension of hostilities. A full-fledged war is in progress since June 2011 with the Kachin Independence Army (KIA) which is the only major group that has not entered into a cease fire agreement.

The last ceasefire agreement with the KIA that lasted for 17 years was broken by the government troops in June 2011. Minor skirmishes still happen with some other groups also on some pretext or the other. The peace committee has always harped on economic development and evaded the issue of political dialogue for the reason that it was beyond the purview of the peace committee and that it is the prerogative of the parliament to initiate the political dialogue. 
The peace process has also gained momentum in the first ever Myanmar Development Co-operation Forum held at Naypyidaw on 20 January 2013 wherein a number of representatives of the International Community met with President Thein Sein to sign an agreement for a smooth process for international aid to flow into Myanmar for the next few years.

The Myanmar government has taken a welcome step to initiate political dialogue with the ethnic groups which has been their main demand. According to C. S. Kuppuswamy, the author of the article, the ethnic groups have also perhaps realised that they have to work on a common agenda despite the differences in their demands and views for achieving their goal. The reaction of the Myanmar armed forces on these developments are yet to be known. The outcome of the present initiative will very much depend upon the cooperation of the armed forces.  We should all leave our sectarian views and expand our vision of things and thus contribute to a more peaceful world than the one we live in. 

Though the vocation of each individual is different, everyone’s goal is the same - the attainment of peace. If we ignore the Emperor of Peace and simply devote ourselves to worldly duties or to our work, thinking that peace will come to us through material learning, wealth or riches, then we are destined to fall into the pit of misery. The consequences of this attitude are clear - people are becoming more and more selfishly oriented and thus actually ignoring the interests of their society and country. They have forgotten that the struggle for enjoyment or renunciation is not the essential struggle in life. We achieve real enjoyment by renouncing our own selfish interest in favor of higher purposes like society, country and God.  The real struggle in life is to find a harmonious relationship between enjoyment and renunciation. ... If we do this, we can make our lives successful.

Śrīla Bhakti Bibudha Bodhayan Mahārāja :
“Sanatan Hindu Dharma - The Way to Harmony”

Published by dasavatara das - "Vedic Views on World News"

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