Aung San Suu Kyi is a traitor to democracy and human rights

State chancellor: Aung San Suu Kyi of Myanmar is a traitor to democracy and human rights. She was once hailed as a fighter for free speech in a country ruled by the military. After the criminal junta dissolved itself in 2011, Suu Kyi’s National League for Democracy was legalized. Aung San Suu Kyi is now in power for 18 months and has done nothing to end the suffering of millions. The biggest issue in Myanmar is the prosecution of the Rohingya. This Islamic people has always been hated and rejected by the Buddhist majority. Suu Kyi should have moved against police and army brutality. Instead she remained silent about the massive human rights abuses carried out by police and army units. It is her government that is killing the Rohingya. Her unwillingness to stand up to these crimes makes Suu Kyi a traitor to democracy and human rights! 

Liberals and social democrats had high hopes for Aung San Suu Kyi. Since 1988, she was the face of ”democratic Burma”. Her National League for Democracy (NLD) was seen as the true representatives of Myanmar as they had won the 1988 elections. However the criminal military rejected the outcome and banned the NLD. The junta then ruled the country for 24 years. They exploited, killed and oppressed anybody who rejected their rule. Ethnic minorities took up arms against the racist politics of the military government which favored the largest ethnic group. Guerrilla warfare has made parts of Myanmar very dangerous. Now in 2017, the government is targeting a unrecognized Islamic minority called the Rohingya. Buddhist supremacists claim that the Islamic Rohingya are in fact Bangladeshi and migrated to Myanmar. Religious intolerance is however the true reason for this hatred, because many Buddhists hate Muslims. The western picture of this ”peaceful” religion is completely smashed, when you look at the Buddhists in Myanmar and their intolerance towards the Rohingya!

The National League for Democracy had the obligation to protect ethnic minorities. Problem is that the majority of NLD voters are ethnic Bamar, who make up 68% of the country. Almost all military officials are Bamar and it is this ethnic group that has ruled the country since its independence. Aung San Suu Kyi knows that by standing up for minorities she would alienate her base (which is Bamar and deeply anti-Muslim). She could also be removed from power by the criminal military who control vital ministries and the police. Therefore Suu Kyi keeps quite and tries to spin her way around international criticism. She does not like it when human rights groups criticize her government’s brutal crackdown of the Rohingya. Suu Kyi is now talking like a true ethnic nationalist, hiding behind the facade of ”fighting terrorism”. She sounds just like general Ni Wen, who founded a Buddhist nationalist regime in the 1970’s!

Revolutionary socialists were already critical in 2015. Aung San Suu Kyi is not a socialist, although the NLD claims to be a democratic socialist (and liberal) party. The State Chancellor made it clear that she supports a capitalist market economy. In her 18 months in power she has lifted many government regulations and made a lot of deals with foreign enterprises. Although workers have the right to form trade unions, this is very dangerous in Myanmar. Because capitalists often hire criminals and assassins to kill off strikers and trade unionists. Workers are also afraid of losing their only source of income and few dare to stand up for their rights!

The Rohingya are denied citizenship under the 1982 Myanmar nationality law. This law was created by the ethnic Bamar nationalist regime of Ne Win. According to Human Rights Watch, the 1982 laws effectively deny to the Rohingya the possibility of acquiring a nationality. This means that over 1 million people in Myanmar are not regarded as citizens. They cannot vote, have no access to government assistance and are often exploited as cheap labour. Revolutionary socialists stand with the Rohingya in solidarity and call for a socialist Myanmar, under the control of working class people from all ethnic groups. We do not trust Aung San Suu Kyi nor her NLD. Back in 2011 we were right to be very critical, now we know the true face of this Noble Prize winner. She is truly a Nelson Mandela. A person who claimed to be a force for democracy and human rights, but who failed to deliver once in power. Like Mandela (and Obama in the USA), Suu Kyi has proven that she is not a leader for genuine change!

Over 400.000 Rohingyas have fled Myanmar this year. A result of the brutal ethnic cleansing of villages and towns by the criminal military. The Myanmar state media is calling it ”a fight against terrorism” and claims that the army is ”only” protecting the peoples of Myanmar. We known that this is a lie. The military has been killing innocents long before the so called ”restoration of democracy by the NLD”. In her last speech, the State Chancellor (Suu Kyi) did not even mention the name: Rohingya. She called them ”Muslims” in order to hide the fact that her government is killing a people. For Suu Kyi and the army, the Rohingya are not a people but only ”Muslims” with no history of their own in Myanmar!

What can be done? Revolutionary Socialist Media calls for the following:

  • An end to the racist attacks on ethnic minorities
  • Put sanctions on Myanmar’s government, ban the selling of weapons
  • Myanmar is to be isolated unless the ethnic cleansing stops
  • The Rohingya are to be given equal treatment and citizenship
  • Workers of all ethnic groups need to unite in a party on a true socialist program
  • Build a socialist Myanmar, expropriate the ruling class, the military and all who made their fortunes during the military junta period (1988-2011)!


The former icon of human rights, now silent about crimes committed by her own government!