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Published 8 April 2016

Caught in between the West and China, post-independence Myanmar is still figuring out how to build a nation, says Lee Jones on teleSUR's The World Today.

The world’s longest-running ethnic insurgencies are growing stronger, says Lee Jones, lecturer on international relations, in an interview with Tariq Ali on teleSUR’s show The World Today: Global Empire.

Though Myanmar’s popular leader Aung San Suu Kyi — a “big white hope of the West,” says Ali — was elected in an unprecedented democratic opening, continuing development projects and military suppression are radicalizing a new generation of ethnic minorities.

Landless, and in some cases stateless, minorities have suffered under government-imposed “ceasefire capitalism” and Chinese megaprojects, which were pushed on the poor country by Western sanctions.

No longer calling for independence, insurgents are still challenging the model of military-enforced national unity with anticolonial rhetoric.

As Suu Kyi is proving to be “transformed from being a very moralistic, hardline democratic icon locked away to a very cold, calculating politician,” says Jones, the lack of movement on viable peace “speaks to the total disarray and failure of Western policy.”
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