Thailand

Thailand

Ambivalent...

One report (here) states that "a war between the Burmese Army and Mongla and Wa ceasefire groups was not going to take place."

This is "because there's no preparation" for battle - which is kind of hard to believe given that the Burmese army is reported to be constantly moving all its divisions around the region, with the addition of new divisions joining in the musical chairs game - all just waiting for the music to stop...

However, at the same time (see here) 'a Lahu militia source claimed yesterday that his unit was instructed to do everything it could to provoke the Wa soldiers to shoot first. “My boss told me that the idea is for the Burmese Army to have an excuse to attack the Wa, as it did in Kokang."'

Meanwhile, "Wa authorities also announced that if clashes occur it will take three-six months to reach Pang Sang".

Basically, a long drawn out gorilla war which the Wa are well equipped and use to...

...but then, so are the Burmese army, who have the additional advantage of owning lots of heavy military equipment.

I guess these "toys" do not come cheap - but then, there are lots of nations all wanting oil and gas and other materials...and guess what?! Burma "just" happens to have lots of oil and gas for sale to anybody who does not ask too many questions and does not follow the over-land pipelines back to where they originate from across the border, "just" in case they work out where they come from...

And next on the "for sale" list - electricity from hydroelectric dams. Again, no questions asked - don't follow the over-land power lines please...just in case you happen to come across the ethnic minority groups that have been "invited" to move out of the way of the newly formed lakes.

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9th September (9) 2009...

Today is 9-9-9...

...which to some superstitious governments North of Thailand, is very important - "beginning of new things"...

Hum - just heard what seems to be the Thai airforce flying off.

Okay, I did not specifically see the aircrafts, however having lived near the flight path of Geneva airport for 17 years, and now the Chiang Mai airport, you get to recognise what are commercial aircrafts, and what are not...this was not a quiet and gentle sound...and it was not a single aircraft either...

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Calm...before the storm?!

Reports of flighting certainly appear to have stopped along the Chinese-Burmese border in the North, with refugees being "invited" to return to their now "safe" homes, now controlled by the "friendly", "loving" and ever "helpful" Burmese army.

According to reports on the local Thai press and television, they are warning the Thai population living along the Northern border adjacent to Burma to watch out for cross-border conflicts spilling into Thailand, and to be prepared to evacuate...

...which can really only mean one thing...the real fighting has yet to begin, as the Northern Thai borders onto the Southern Wa State - and the Wa soldiers have the reputation of being formidable fighters - "1 Wa soldier can take out 15 Burmese soldiers"...

And where ever there is any conflict, civilians always run away. And the only way they can run to "safety" is South into Thailand.

So once again, Thailand is going to be faced with yet another influx of war refugees from Burma running for their lives.

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Getting messy...


Refugees in Burma's Shan State arrive in China, on August 25. (Photo: Reuters)

"The United Wa State Army (UWSA) that has joined battle with its Kokang ally against the Burma Army yesterday said a shell aimed for its mountain base near the border had overshot the mark and killed one People’s Liberation Army (PLA) soldier while wounding two others."

It has been noted in the past that the UWSA is indirectly supported by the Chinese, as a large number of ethnic Wa were originally from China prior to the communist revolution many years ago.

To begin with, the conflict was restricted to the Northern part of Shan State on the Chinese border, away from Thailand, and originally did not involve the more powerful United Wa State Army.

Some reports are now indicating that the Burmese armies are preparing to engage the Wa (and others) in the Southern part, adjacent to the Thai border.

This site has useful background information on the region.

Yes the Wa are one of the biggest drug producers in the world. However even though drugs are never good, you can in some way comprehend their desperate situation to protect themselves from the Burmese armies who are not know for their humanitarian and loving attitudes towards others, especially those of different ethnic backgrounds.

Reports are also appearing that the Burmese army is forcing civilians to carry ammunitions to the front lines...

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Trouble has started...

BBC: 'Thousands flee Burma violence'

The National: 'Thousands flee border clashes'

Again, if you perform a google search, you will find many more articles.

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