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By Aung Kaung Myat

In late 2019, Annie Lab identified a network of six Facebook pages in Myanmar that has been coordinating the dissemination of pro-military content. All pages have administrators residing in Russia. Together, the pages have more than 4.4 million followers (page likes) and some of their content has been shared widely across Myanmar.

Admins in Russia

The following table lists the six pages with their URLs, page likes and the number of their administrators based in Russia and Myanmar. …


The first time I saw Aung San Suu Kyi was at the Irrawaddy Literature Festival in Yangon in 2013. People started moving into the ballroom of the Inya Lake Hotel 30 minutes before her speech. As she was just released in 2010, people in the festival were excited to see her trying to get into the already-packed room. After what seemed like an eternity, Aung San Suu Kyi appeared with security guards pushing the wall of people taking photos of her with their smart phones. She did not look at anyone, her head high.

She said a few things about how literature is important for development of a nation. I was not impressed. I sensed a patronizing tone in her voice and I thought her speech was such a cliche. Aung San Suu Kyi I saw for the first time was different from what I imagined. Disappointed, I left the ballroom where she was giving a speech. Later, I told my friends that her speech was full of rhetoric. Anyone in the crowd could give a similar speech. I had expected her to have more insightful thoughts. …


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Burmese monks expressing their disapproval of Rohingya (Photo: AP)

Hundreds of thousands of Rohingya are engulfed by series of violence. Meanwhile, everyone — the Burmese military, Aung San Suu Kyi-led civilian government, CSOs, and, most sadly, grassroots activists — are united against the group whom they call ‘illegal aliens”. It is not a newfound knowledge that the Rohingya are the epicenter of Buddhist fundamentalism and ultra-nationalism in Burma, a country once well known for its enduring spirit for democracy and freedom. The Rohingya issue has been fueling the anti-Muslim sentiments in a Buddhist majority country since 2012.

Two narratives, two groups

There are generally two types of anti-Rohingya narratives being circulated on social media and in independent local media. The two narratives are propagated by two groups, the nationalists and supporters of Aung San Suu Kyi. …

About

Aung Kaung Myat

Journalism student from Burma/Non-believer/Radical Progressive.

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