Mehdi Hasan’s barbed attack on Aung San Suu Kyi over Rohingya riles Burmese (video)

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How can you displace 30,000 people, make sure 130,000 people don’t receive basic life sustaining aid, and do nothing as 27,000 people flee to Bangladesh ahead of a raping, murdering, and village destroying army? Fairly easily if you are the recipient of a Nobel Peace Prize by all appearances.

In this edition of Al Jazeera’s Upfront British political journalist, Mehdi Hasan, tackles Myanmar, the Rohingya, and Nobel Peace Laureate Aung San Suu Kyi.

Hasan starts off by pointing out that everyone loves Aung San Suu Kyi; that she has “captured the hearts of leaders across the globe.”

US President Barack Obama who abolished most of the sanctions that had been imposed against the Southeast Asian nation almost two decades earlier in an attempt to bring an end to human rights abuses in the country by the Tatmadaw would be a testament to that.

Part of the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) December 13, 2016 report
Part of the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) December 13, 2016 report. Supplied

So is everything coming up Myanmar? Hasan thinks not. Citing the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA), and The United Sates Holocaust Memorial Museum, what is happening to the Rohingya could be “genocide” or “ethnic cleansing.” In a sing-song voice, Hasan details a few of the hardships wrought by violent Buddhist groups and a government that denies the very existence of the Rohingya race.

Yet somehow Hasan appears almost surprised that Ms Suu Kyi refuses to use the term ‘Rohingya.’ In November, at an Asean Summit Myanmar officials condemned the UN and the United States for using the term, and pressed that they should subscribe to the more biased use of “Bengali,” while condoning the denial of basic human rights to the already destitute minority.

Yes, Hasan is being incredibly critical of the leader of the newly ‘democratic’ nation, and with tongue-in-cheek and more than a dollop of sarcasm. None of which has gone down well with some viewing the video on Al Jazeera‘s Facebook page. To see the extreme blow-back, look no further than the comments.

“Ethnic cleansing? Genoside? Lol lol lol!!”

“This Biased media is trying to exaggerate the situation.”

“Our leader, mother, Aung San Suu Kyi is not turning a blind eye to Burma Rohingya’s issue.”

Just as Hasan points out, these are superb arguments in support of Ms Suu Kyi’s idea of two sides. But who of them is “slowly succumbing to starvation, despair, and disease” in refugee camps that have been labelled akin to concentration camps? (See: Life, Death, & Hope: Inside Myanmar’s Rohingya Concentration Camps)

To those Facebook users calling the media “uneducated” and “always making conflict and giving false informations (sic)…” I ask you, what do you say to veteran conflict zone photojournalist James Nachtwey who photographed the Plight of the Rohingya for Time, witnessing first-hand what is happening to a “non-existent people”.

What do you say to the UN Special Rapporteur who has been met with nothing but a brick wall of denial, instead of opening an impartial investigation that would lead to real answers and real change?

After the 1994 genocide in Rwanda the world said it would never allow another genocide to occur. Yet here it is just 22-years later doing exactly that. Perhaps the ‘world’ hadn’t counted on the next genocide being presided over by a Nobel Laureate, or perhaps it just comes down to Myanmar having more of what the world needs than Rwanda.



Feature video Al Jazeera English



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2 Responses to "Mehdi Hasan’s barbed attack on Aung San Suu Kyi over Rohingya riles Burmese (video)"

  1. Thom   December 15, 2016 at 6:53 pm

    It is undeniable truth the so-called Rohinga aka Bengali originated from the near-at-hand Bengali land of over population and grinding poverty .
    They are genetically identical to Bangladeshi(Bengali). Speak like duck, walk like duck and sound like duck is a duck. They are 100% Bengali.

    Bengali muslims are hijacking the name Rohingya.
    All the Bengali muslims who using the name Rohingya are identity thieves.
    Rohingya mean Rakhingtha (Rakhing people) by Chittagonian Bangali accent.
    Same as Burmese call “Rakhing” as “Yakhine”. Bengali dialog do not have “Ra” sound. So they used nearest sound “Ro”.
    So, they call “Rakhingtha as “Rohingya”. All the Rakhingtha (Rohingyas are Buddhist) nothing to do with the name Rohingya and Bengali muslims.
    Bengali muslim liars want to became ethnic of Myanmar to occupy the Rakhaing land.
    That is why they are hijacking Rakhaing people identity as liar muslim identity to become ethnic of Myanmar.?
    Chinese and Indians are proud to be called Chinese/Indian. But Bengali muslims are trying to hide the truth. Please think why.

    Events have been well witnessing that that Rohingyas or Bengali Muslims are radical Islam or jihadists!
    They are using the human rights tactic as shield; but, they are definitely creating instability of the country and committed crime against humanity!
    They are only thinking to make population grow, relocating into other countries for the propagation of Islam.

  2. Faisal   December 16, 2016 at 12:17 am

    Dear Thom,
    Violation of
    Article 15.
    (1) Everyone has the right to a nationality.
    (2) No one shall be arbitrarily deprived of his nationality nor denied the right to change his nationality.
    I can directly sue you.
    You Maruk U Leave our land. The Magada.

    Ask her, people are above then government. Totally violation of constitution. If she present 1982 citizenship law. There is no historical record that Rohingya are migrant Bengali. Before Maruk U empire.
    Ask #ASSK
    Dinnyawadi, 25 kings (146-746 AD); Vesali, 12 kings (788-994 AD);
    Gave #Arakan to Hindu #Vaishali again. If Hindu became #Rohingya accepting Islam. Are all Vaishali kiked by #Mongoloid (you)???? Vaishali their own race, we will not leave Arakan. Now You leave go to main land of your own.
    Buddha was born 500BC, in Vaishali dynasty.
    You Mongoloid got Buddhism from Hindu Dynasty.


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