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Pre-2008 Posts

One Blog Post for Burma — October 4, 2007


Free Burma!

International bloggers are preparing an action to support the peaceful revolution in Burma. We want to set a sign for freedom and show our sympathy for these people who are fighting their cruel regime without weapons. These Bloggers are planning to close down their blogs on October 4 and just post one Banner then, underlined with the words “Free Burma!“  Or post one blog entry, accordingly.

I’ve been working on my own blog post about the situation in Burma but I wanted to spread the word about plans underway for international bloggers to blog October 4 for the people of Burma.  Tomorrow, post only one blog post, and let it be about Burma.

All of the information is here.   There are, as of a moment ago, 4,226 bloggers participating.  You can add your name and the name of your blog to the list and you can choose from many graphics to post to your blog.

It is particularly important that as bloggers, we participate, because although the military crackdown on protesters seems to have momentarily become quiet, bloggers are being hunted by the Myanmar/Burmese government.  

Join us, and support the people of Myanmar/Burma!




8 thoughts on “One Blog Post for Burma — October 4, 2007

  1. I’m a little suspicious of this initiative. For years, all the many years, Aung San Suu Kyi has struggled on, pretty much unheralded but for the rare snippet in the mainstream media. Now that there are riots, blood, and the potential for A1 news shots of men as heroes, the left wades in.

    Is the country not called Myanmar, now? It was the British who called it Burma at time of colonisation.

    Posted by Sis | October 3, 2007, 8:21 pm
  2. Sis, I feel okay about this because the site lists Burmese/Myanmar bloggers, I read those I could read which were in English. From what I can see, they are on board with this. There’s not much to see given the crackdown on blogging/the internet in Myanmar/Burma. But I can’t see a downside to blogging in support of the people there.

    I’ve seen bloggers from Burma/Myanmar refer to their country as both Burma and Myanmar, and sometimes Burma/Myanmar. I am not sure of the ins and outs of why they identify as they do. I know that the indigenous people living in Burma/Myanmar, the Shan and Karen people, for example, refer to themselves by those names, “Karen People,” “Shan”.

    The Left will do what it will– I see this as a revolt of the people. They are very united across ethnicities in their opposition to the generals and to China.


    Posted by womensspace | October 3, 2007, 9:17 pm
  3. Based on what I have read, I think the people have in large part rejected the return to “Myanmar” as the name of the country, even though it is the pre-colonial name, because the return to the name was the decision of the junta/generals who are illegally controlling Burma/Myanmar.

    So, seems like Burma/Myanmar is the way to go, even though it’s awkward.

    Posted by womensspace | October 3, 2007, 9:47 pm
  4. I guess I’d better watch the news tonight. Sometimes I can stream it on internet. Then maybe I’ll know whereof I speak.

    Posted by Sis | October 4, 2007, 1:10 am
  5. Thanks SO MUCH for offering this, Heart. I’m following your lead.

    Posted by Maggie Jochild | October 4, 2007, 6:17 am
  6. How in tune I am. I had just made a post about the situation of women in Burma before I checked out your journal and found this action. Will fix up the post right now.

    Posted by allecto | October 4, 2007, 1:04 pm
  7. The AP reports current, ’07 specific stories about men in Myanmar/Burma gang-raping and either forcefully impregnating women or killing women (in one incident, by gunshots into the “vagina,” that body part misnamed by misogynists from the Latin word for sheath or scabbard to hold a soldier’s sword).

    More reserved in tone is this educational excerpt from the International Women’s Rights Action Watch:

    ” ‘I have not known of any soldiers punished (for committing rape) myself. The punishment for them was just being told they were blamed for raping the women. Nothing else will happen to them.’

    Tatmadaw Soldier, reported in School For Rape, by Betsy Apple,
    Earth Rights International

    Rape as a Weapon of War

    Since 1993, international human rights organizations have documented hundreds of incidents of rape by Burmese soldiers, particularly against ethnic women. The Burmese Women Union has published interviews with rape survivors and their own reports. Rape by the military is documented in reports by the Human Rights Watch, Karen Human Rights Group, and by many Burmese ethnic minority groups. [32]

    The UN Special Rapporteur on Burma stated in January 1999 that Burmese troops have been abducting “increasing numbers of women, including young girls and the elderly” who have become the victims of rape and other abuses. [33]

    According to Betsy Apple, expert on violence against women in Burma, incidents of rape by military forces are seldom revealed and never punished, thus creating a culture in which “rape can thrive because it is never effectively confronted.” [34]

    Many human rights activists maintain that the high levels of unpunished rape are actually part of the government’s plan of “Burmanization,” which encourages Burmese soldiers to use rape as a tool of war against ethnic women in order to “change the ethnic balance, demoralize ethnic minority communities, and kill ethnic women. . . One of the ways Tatmadaw soldiers undertake this practice is by coercing women from non-Burman ethnicities to marry them. This is often achieved by forcing women to submit to unwanted physical contact or rape; the shame of such an experience often compels women to submit to marriage. Furthermore, either within these forced marriages, or as a consequence of rape, many women are impregnated against their will.” [35]

    [footnotes omitted]”

    Certainly I do not minimize the evil of the hatred against women in Myanmar/Burma, or the abuses against others deemed “other” by the despots demonstrating their spiritual vacuity. But I have been re-reading Sonia Johnson about the She-Volution (and going out of our [patriarchal] minds into the divine mind as spiritual help to womankind). And the reading has sparked spiritual thought about Myanmar/Burma.

    When we see the horror of global patriarchy and massive misogyny, we can begin to move out in a metaphysics of womb/womankind’s knowing that man’s sadistic evil cannot sustain itself in the cosmos. Today I claim that the unity of good supplants the sadism of evil, which falls for lack of a witness in my own consciousness of the dignity, strength and courage of womankind everywhere. Today I claim as much joyful and eternal “sacred feminine” strength as possible for myself, extended to the stars and beamed back down to the womb/womankind of Myanmar. May womankind be blessed.

    Posted by JB Sproull | October 4, 2007, 10:19 pm
  8. Spammers have polluted the list of bloggers. Who knows how many are legitimate. I contributed my entry, mostly based on that State of Terror report from the Karen Women’s Organization.

    Posted by Aletha | October 5, 2007, 8:37 am

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