Why the propaganda campaign for international intervention in Burma?

Dandelion Salad

By Peter Symonds
10 May 2008

The catastrophe wrought by Cyclone Nargis on the Burmese people has provoked an extraordinary campaign by the US and allied powers, and in the international media, demanding that the military junta open its borders to aid and aid officials as well as to American military aircraft, troops and warships. Once again an attempt is being made to stampede public opinion with heartrending images of desperate survivors and devastated towns, accompanied by an incessant drumbeat condemning the Burmese regime for its inadequate aid efforts, its insularity, and its failure to accept international, especially American, aid.

One should immediately pause and recall the outcome of similar “humanitarian” exercises. In 1999, the plight of Kosovan refugees was exploited by the US and its allies to wage war against Serbia and transform the province into a NATO protectorate largely “cleansed” of its Serbian minority. In the same year, Australia, with the backing of the US, used the violence of Indonesian-backed militias to justify a military intervention into East Timor to install a regime sympathetic to Canberra’s economic and strategic interests. After nearly a decade the local populations in both countries continue to live in appalling conditions, with none of their fundamental needs having been met.


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Cyclone-hit Myanmar town struggles to rebuild (video)

Organizations to Donate for Aid Relief for Myanmar

9 thoughts on “Why the propaganda campaign for international intervention in Burma?

  1. HellaD, we CAN’T focus on helping the people in distress now because of the regime, that’s the whole point. It has estimated that as many as 1.5 million people could die from disease if things carry on as they are rather than around 100,000. Burma alone does not have the expertees or the infrastructure, and the ruling junta are so callous that they cannot be trusted to pass on any significant amount of aid to the right parties. Coordinated international help from many organisations on a HUGE scale is required immediately.

  2. Thanks so much for this post. I have been getting worried seeing the focus of the news being on how awful the regime is. We all already know how bad that regime is and should focus on helping the people in distress now.

    A good site for this that is posting daily updates with first-hand stories from Burmese students and Aid workers and the amazing work that they are currently doing is http://www.gitameit.com

  3. As for sinister plotter, Bernard Kouchner, he is one of the most qualified people in the world to speak on this issue. Before his political career, he was an ex Red Cross doctor who founded of Medicins sans Frontieres and Medecins du Monde. He is a great huminanitarian with a distinguished history in humanitarian relief. Peter Symonds is so ignorant, he probably doesn’t even know this.

  4. Of course, it has nothing to do with the fact that well over a million people, including many children will die from disease if the vile Burmese junta doesn’t allow international aid agencies in VERY soon. They are the specialists in dealing with this problem, not the US military or the Burmese military. Despite what the idiotic author of this piece writes about the Tsunami, Burma’s response IS unprecedented. Iran let them after their terrible earthquake in Bam and no one would say that Iran wasn’t a place of strategic interest for the US!

    This piece is solipsistic, ignorant and repugnant.

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