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Myanmar Government

Latest from The Guardian:

April 2, 2016

Aung San Suu Kyi set to get PM-type role in Myanmar government

Bill to appoint Nobel laureate as powerful state counsellor, bypassing ban on her becoming president, passes upper house

Published: 1 Apr 2016

 

“I think by now I have made it fairly clear that I am not very happy with the word ‘hope.’ I don’t believe in people just hoping. We work for what we want.”
—Daw Aung San Suu Kyi

 

Dear Friends and Fellow laborers,

I am receiving emails asking me what this means for Myanmar (Burma) and will it affect any COG members there.

My answer is somewhat complicated unless you know something about the recent history of Myanmar.

Nobel Laureate Aung San Suu Kyi derives her power in Myanmar because she is the beloved daughter of General Aung San, a hero of Myanmar independence.  In World War 2, the Japanese invaded and conquered Myanmar.  They were later driven out by the combined forces of the British, Americans and Chinese.  However, Myanmar remained a part of the British Empire.

Aung San, the father of Aung San Suu Gyi is recognized as the founder of the Union of Burma because he organized the various ethnic groups into a cohesive political force to pursue independence from the British.

On January 27, 1947, an agreement was signed with the British Prime Minister Clement Atlee to declare Burma’s independence within one year.  Aung San was assassinated soon after.

After his assassination, political unrest and insurgencies plagued Myanmar until Ne Win’s coup d’etat in 1962 which established a military controlled government.

Aung San Suu Gyi and her National League for Democracy (NLD) party has been the leading voice of dissent.  This has posed quite a dilemma for the military government who, since 1989 have kept her in prison or under house arrest.  She is dangerous to their remaining in power and yet, she is loved by all the people.

There remains a static stand-off in which the military and the NLD do not want to push too hard.  The military has the guns after all.  The military proved in the 1988 protests that they were willing to kill hundreds, even monks, to maintain their power.

This recent election changes things for the better.  Aung San Suu Kyi will be given real power, even though she does not hold the presidency.  It is one of her party members who is president.  The military still holds a great deal of power in the legislature and they still have the guns.

However, this change will allow Aung San Suu Gyi to influence a slow opening of more human rights for the people of Burma.  Even more important, money will now pour into Burma.  Aung San Suu Gyi is loved all over the world.  She is the only non-Head of State ever to address the U.S. Congress[1].

This move will do more than anything else to legitimize the rogue military regime in Myanmar.  Since the generals and their families all have major stakes in businesses with international aspirations, this is a smart move on their part.  They give up a part of their political power and gain a lot by legitimizing a once pariah nation.  International sanctions are already being lifted so foreign concerns can gain access to the riches of Myanmar’s natural resources which include oil and gas, gold, platinum and gems, Rare Earth Minerals (REMs) and even uranium.

This year Myanmar holds the chairmanship of ASEAN (Association of South East Asian Nations), and Myanmar is ready to put on a smiling face.  But there are still problems under the whitewash.

This is real progress.  More economic opportunities are opening up.  Here in Thailand, many migrant workers are going back to find work in Myanmar.

The COG brethren will benefit from economic development.  Some Legacy grads perhaps will find good employment due to their English language skills.  We will know more after our trip to Myanmar for the Spring Holy Days.

Warmest regards to all,
tlsig
T. Leon Sexton

 

[1]

Her speech can also be viewed on Youtube:  https://youtu.be/zH61i6zQ4c0

19 Sep 2012 … Nobel Laureate and Burmese Opposition leader, Aung San Suu Kyi received the Congressional Gold Medal for her commitment to democracy

 

 

Legacy Letter March 2016

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Legacy Letter February 2016

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Eastern and Western Catholic Churches to reunite after 1000 years?

Pope Franciscus I

Pope Francis, Private audience of Centesimus Annus Pro Pontifice CAPP at Clementine Hall, Vatican City. (Attribution: Christoph Wagener)

‘The Vatican says Pope Francis and the leader of the Russian Orthodox Church will meet in Cuba next week in a major step to heal the 1000-year-old schism that divided Christianity between East and West’. (Washington Post, Friday, February 5th, 2016)

Vladimir Putin with bishops of Russian Orthodox Church

Vladimir Putin with bishops of Russian Orthodox Church. (Attribution: Kremlin.ru)

Rev 13:3-4
And I saw one of his heads as it were wounded to death; and his deadly wound was healed: and all the world wondered after the beast. And they worshipped the dragon which gave power unto the beast: and they worshipped the beast, saying, Who is like unto the beast? who is able to make war with him?

In 1054, the Catholic Church split into two parts. The Eastern part, known as Orthodox or Greek Orthodox under the Patriarch in Constantinople and the Western part under the Pope in Rome. This was due to irreconcilable differences.

Those differences included whether or not the Pope in Rome had the Pre-eminent jurisdiction in the Church, and the place of the See of Constantinople in Church hierarchy. The doctrinal differences included who or what was the source of the Holy Spirit and whether leavened or unleavened bread should be used in the Eucharist.

The Greek churches in southern Italy were forced to close or accept the Latin liturgy. Michael Cerularius, the Patriarch of Constantinople ordered closure of all Latin churches in Constantinople in retaliation.

Pope Leo IX sent a Papal Legate to Constantinople to remove the title of Eccumenical Patriarch from Michael Cerularius, and insist he accept the authority of the Pope as Head and Mother of the churches. Cerularius refused and the Papal Legate Cardinal Humbert excommunicated him. Cerulariuas in return excommunicated Cardinal Humbert and the other Legates.

These opening shots began a century long rift that ended in a complete schism that has lasted to this day.

This schism not only affected the church, but human politics as well. Remember, The Roman Empire had been divided into two parts. Rome remained the Capital of the Western Roman Empire; and the Eastern Roman Empire, centered in Constantinople, became known as the Byzantine Empire. Each division has it’s own Emperor and it’s own laws.

Several attempts have been made over the thousand year schism to bring about some form of reconciliation, but to no avail.

Will these men bring it about? Only time and God’s will can tell.

Leon Sexton
tlsig
Legacy Institute

Legacy Letter January 2016

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