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The Future of the NMSP and Party Values

Banya Htaw Weang

Thursday, February 23, 2012

There are some questions we need to ask the New Mon State Party today. Here is the list: The clashes that are taking place between SSA (Shan State Army-South), a recent ceasefire group, and Burma army; The Democratic Buddhist Army (DKBA) troops are being disarmed with the backed pressure of the Burma army; No date is being set for peace talks between the KIA (Kachin Independence Army) and Burma Thein Sein regime as the Burma peace team refuses to meet KIA in China; clashes have also occurred between the Karen National Union (KNU) troops and the Burma army after the ceasefire agreement; KNU top leaders are divided as a result of the ceasefire agreement. And lastly, the DKBA and Karen Border Guard Force (BGF) are now fighting each other. NMSP, are you aware of these situations? Are you just ignoring them?

 The latest news we have learned is that NMSP central committee members have finished their urgent meeting in which they agreed to accept the five-point agreement, as proposed. They have agreed with the Aung Min peace team. However, the NMSP leaders are still deeply divided as a result of the debates. This is a small mark that could become bigger in the future for NMSP. Whether this time the ceasefire agreement will last, the big loss today for the NMSP is the public trust and their own party values.
 
Remember that much of the Mon population lost their trust in the NMSP before. This lasted nearly 15 years as a result of the NMSP signing a ceasefire agreement with the Burman army. The party had not been able to defend the Mon people from various human rights violations and land confiscation that had been committed by the Burman army.  This was especially the case in Southern Ye Township in Mon State. However, the NMSP was able to gradually regain the trust of the public when they refused to attend the Mhawbi National Convention, and later stood against the 2008 constitution and again with the 2010 election.

Moreover, the NMSP increasingly regained public trust after the party convened the Mon National Conference, which has taken place twice a year over the past three years. As a result of the conference, they also regained trust by forming the Mon Affairs Union. To be more specific, the party became popular again after NMSP leaders, led by Chairman Gen Htaw Mon and Secretary General Ajar Hong Sar, joined the United Nationalities Federal Council (UNFC) with the aims to form the Federal Army Union. But, it seems the dream has faded, now that Chin National Front (CNF) broke the principles set by UNFC followed by KNU. To that point, the NMSP should aware of how hard it was to regain the public trust.
 
Looking back now at the Mon revolution, after ten years of fighting for self-determination, the Mon People Front, led by Nai Aung Tun, exchanged their arms for peace as propaganda of the Burman government during U Nu’s rule in 1958. At that time it was the biggest and most painful loss the Mon people had experienced, after losing the Mon Kingdom, Hongsawatoi, which was invaded by U Aung Zay Ya in 1757 A.D. U Nu and the Burman government seized all the weapons from the Mon People Front which were bought and supported off the backs of the Mon people. At that time, many of Mon leaders had been imprisoned.
 
Again in 1995, the NMSP, led by Nai Shwe Kyin, entered into a ceasefire agreement with the Burman government, then led by U Khin Nyunt. U Khin Nyunta was a Chief Spy at that time as a means to solve the political problems through political means when the new government had emerged. But, the successive Burman government continued to refuse political talks until now. Instead, the Burman government forced all the ceasefire groups to accept the Border Guard Force program which led to open-fire with the DKBA, SSA and Kachin, and the end of the last ceasefire with the NMSP in 2010. However, the Burman government then changed it’s strategy from the Border Guard Force (BGF) to peace negotiations, after they learned that the original plan would not be as easy as they had anticipated. The Burman government is also turning it’s divide and rule plans towards the ethnic armed forces while offering the hope of political talks.
 
If the NMSP reaches a ceasefire agreement with the Burman government again, this will mark the third time for a ceasefire agreement or exchange of arms for peace, according to the Burman media. The future of the NMSP is highly uncertain: it is unknown whether this ceasefire will be short-lived or long term for the Mon people, or if what has happened in the past will happen once again. It can certainly be expected that if the ceasefire is broken, the number of NMSP soldiers and public support will significantly be reduced, and the values of the party will be questioned by many.


Feedback From
Name of sender: Ougkar
Email of sender: ougkar@gmail.com
COMMENTS : One Party should not has tow policy. 1+1 should be 1. not should be 2 on the politics. Banya Htaw Weang researched it right and clear. We can say former political situation and now political situation are not the same, but look back and still thinking, it is the same people. As my view, for the side of Burmese people and military dictatorship only change working process. Attitude and mind are still the old style. NMSP should wait until the parliament clearest. after talk about it peaceful. Now you got what from them as the proposal the two main thing. Don't you look the ethnics as the Kachin now. should stand strongly to get trust from all not only Mon people but also the whole country and world. We can say to them, make inside changing all to be best and clearest. And we talk about it. NMSP have view and welcome to cooperate the Union of Myanmar to stay and work together. Tell them about it. All ethnics should stand as the name of ethnic. don't stand only for your people, nationality, party and group. Try for the "All for one-one for All". if not achieve will lost the end of life. Chose Feel Often and Feel Permanent, which one do we want. Walk-Work and Talk should be Rock.
Feedback From
Name of sender: young-gun
Email of sender: younggun3@hotmail.com
COMMENTS: This message is for younger generation Mons. Keeping up with changes in the world is inevitable for any idealogy or organizations to survive in the morden world. It's questionable whether the NMSP is upgrading theirs or not. Why not leave this to the Mon people to decide, once the Mon public lost their support to a political party, the party is more or less finished. For now, please get ready for Hamas style new Mon Liberation Front.
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