Courage and terror in Myanmar

A note from the editor

Preeti Jha

Rise up for Myanmar

There’s no going back. That unflinching commitment to months, if not years, of resistance has poured out of every person I’ve spoken to from Myanmar since the coup of 1 February 2021.

Friends and colleagues lost their liberty overnight. Only six years ago we were celebrating hopes for a new future after the first free elections in decades.

The people of Myanmar know dictatorship. They’ve seen more starkly than most how the few profit from the many. How their schools and hospitals crumbled as the generals and their cronies hoarded wealth. The muzzling of debate.

To stop a return to those days they’ve made extraordinary sacrifices. Striking workers are giving up their wages. Neighbourhoods are pooling funds to build clinics. Thousands are in hiding as activism and newsrooms are forced underground. More than 800 civilians have lost their lives to junta forces.

This Big Story set out to record the terror but also the tremendous courage. In the following pages you’ll hear from people leading the resistance in Myanmar. They spoke from safe houses and jungles in the hours internet was freed from state-imposed blackouts. Some of our contributors have been anonymized for their safety.

We also chart a heartening shift, as new solidarities emerge between the Buddhist majority and persecuted minorities, including the Rohingya. There is hope in the push for a new federal democracy. The world must decisively stand with Myanmar’s people.

Thank you so much to everyone who invested in our community share offer and helped to save our stories!

Preeti Jha for the New Internationalist co-operative.
www.newint.org

The big story

We shall not be moved! Anti-coup protesters remain seated in front of a line of riot police trying to clear roads in Yangon. Partially visible is a poster urging citizens to join the Civil Disobedience Movement. Photo: Panos Pictures

We shall not be moved! Anti-coup protesters remain seated in front of a line of riot police trying to clear roads in Yangon. Partially visible is a poster urging citizens to join the Civil Disobedience Movement.

Photo: Panos Pictures

Courage and terror in Myanmar

Lives and livelihoods have been laid down for democracy. The economy is on the brink of collapse. The world must support the people’s quest to end military rule once and for all, writes Preeti Jha.

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The Big Story

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