With Russian Foreign Minister Lavrov meeting junta officials in Naypyitaw, The Irrawaddy revisits this commentary on the alliance between Moscow and the Myanmar junta.
World events have brought to Southeast Asia a new era of confrontation and conflict, this time led by—but not limited to—US-China geostrategic rivalry and competition.
Both Russia and Ukraine are major arms suppliers to the military, but now the junta will have to look elsewhere for weapons.
In an interview with The Irrawaddy, Dr. Miemie Winn Byrd also said the Myanmar resistance could learn some lessons from Ukraine’s effort to rally international support.
Along with China’s moves in the South China Sea and Myanmar’s coup, the invasion of Ukraine has introduced another fault line among the bloc’s members.
In Myanmar as elsewhere, Beijing uses the geopolitical shadows to project its power.
Russia’s open aggression against Ukraine presents China with a hot potato, but regime change in Moscow is not an outcome Beijing wants to see.
The differing reactions to the crises in the two countries expose global fault lines and underscore inherent biases in Western media, particularly their coverage of Asia.
The national uprising unfolding against the military regime offers a unique window to support the emergence of a stable democracy in the country.
Also this week, the junta praised the farmers whose lives it has ruined, chided Ukraine for being invaded, and sought a generator for its Electricity Ministry.
The regional bloc expressed ‘concern’, but individual members’ responses varied, with Myanmar backing Moscow and Singapore supporting Ukraine’s sovereignty.
Both the junta and the Kremlin have underestimated the people they seek to subdue; these avowed friends must not be allowed to succeed and vindicate each other’s actions.
The military regime fears that China may follow Russia’s example and invade Myanmar if the junta cannot protect Chinese interests in the country.
Ambassadors from one nation after another took to the podium to urge peace at a rare emergency session of the General Assembly to debate Russia’s attack on its neighbor.
Many in Myanmar feel solidarity with Ukrainians’ fight to repel Vladimir Putin’s military aggression, and see a common enemy in Russia, a strong supporter of the junta.