Myanmar Conflict: Geopolitical Food Chain

For more than a year, Washington held its tongue as the Rohingya humanitarian crisis raged on. Western corporate media condemned Aung San Suu Kyi, Nobel Peace laureate cum the West’s poster girl, for not speaking out against the atrocities committed by the Myanmar military.

Just as Myanmar and Bangladesh accepted China’s mediation based on a three-point peace plan for the Rakhine state, US Foreign Secretary Tillerson condemned the Myanmar government, saying the atrocities against the Rohingyas amounted to ethnic cleansing. The timing is no mere coincidence.

China’s mediation can restore peace to the warring Rakhine state, facilitate an orderly return of Rohingyas to Rakhine and promote development along the Bangladesh-China-India-Myanmar Economic Corridor, one of the six in Belt and Road Initiative.

That’s bad news for the empire which regards BRI as China’s geostrategy to bring prosperity to the region. When that succeeds, which is more than likely,  it’ll  demonstrate to the world at large that China’s win-win formula to secure peace and development is far superior to the American way of perpetual war and destruction. BRI is anathema to the Wolfowitz Doctrine, which seeks to prevent the emergence of a strong rival that will threaten American hegemony.

As in the Korean peninsula, the Middle East and other powderkeg regions, the empire isn’t interested in peace which would deprive the American arms industry of obscene profits and a pretext for the empire’s military presence and intervention in foreign land. Unclassified CIA documents show that the US supported Myanmar’s military junta in the past in its relentless and continuing wars against the minorities since1948. Washington’s  concern was that “a Burma divided by ethnic interests would be more apt to fall under China’s influence”.

Tillerson’s Johnnie-come-lately denunciation of the Myanmar military will backfire on the empire. Moreover, as an analyst has pointed out, America’s belated condemnation of Myanmar is frustrating India’s attempt to bring Myanmar into its sphere of influence:

“In officially putting itself on the opposite side vis-a-vis India, the US has shown that the policy being sold to New Delhi, that Washington will India’s side in every major issue from China and Pakistan, to One Belt–One Road and the war in Afghanistan, is at best, incomplete and being approached in a totally one sided manner.”

“The US clearly sees India not as a co-equal but as a geopolitical useful idiot…When it comes to pouncing on a Chinese peace initiative, the US is willing to trample on the interests of its Indian “ally”, without apparently thinking twice.”

Like America, India is taking a one-sided position, albeit on the opposing side, in the Rohingya crisis. In so doing, India has no regard for the interest of  Bangladesh, often touted as a strong ally of New Delhi. This should serve as a wake-up call to the largely pro-India politicians in Dhaka, that India is a hegemon in South Asia and doesn’t regard Bangladesh as an equal.