Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Scholarship info -- Heinrich Boell Foundation, for Burmese --

Dear All,

Heinrich Boell Foundation, Southeast Asia Regional Office, holds an

annual scholarship competition for a small number of students from

Myanmar/Burma to study at two Thai premier Universities offering three

international Programmes specifically designed for younger generation

candidates from Myanmar/Burma.

The Scholarships apply respectively to the academic year of 2009/2010

for Master of Arts in International Development (MAIDS) at

Chulalongkorn University in Bangkok , Faculty of Political Science, the

2009/2010 academic years for Master of Arts in Sustainable

Development, at the Regional Center for Social Science and Sustainable

Development (RCSD) in Chiang Mai University , Faculty of Social

Sciences, and the 2009/2010 academic year for International Master of

Economics (MEcon), at the Faculty of Economics, Chiang Mai University .

Application forms and entrance qualifications for the international

Programmes of the respective Universities are available at web links

provided below. Application forms are attached as word documents.

The Master of Arts in International Development Studies (MAIDS)

Program at Chulalongkorn University 's Faculty of Political Science;

http://www.ids. polsci.chula.

The Master of Arts in Sustainable Development of the Regional Center

for Social Science and Sustainable Development (RCSD) at Chiang Mai

University, Faculty of Social Sciences; http://rcsd. th/

The International Master of Economics Program of the Faculty of

Economics (M.Econ) at Chiang Mai University ;

http://fuangfah. econ.cmu. asp

The selection process is highly competitive. Students for the

Scholarship Program are selected by both HBF and the respective

Universities in an open competition. Decisions made are final. Only

selected candidates will be contacted. Applicants can re-apply for the

Scholarship Program the following year.

We kindly ask for your assistance in forwarding the relevant

information and documents (applications forms and general information)

to interested parties and suitable candidates.

Please find attached:

- HBF Call for Applications

- RCSD, MAIDS and Mecon application documents

For further information on our Myanmar/Burma work pls. visit:


Thai protestors shut down Suvvanabhumi International Airport in Bangkok --

Churning the Sea of Milk -- at Suvarnabhumi Airport - photo copyright Kyi May Kaung

Suv. airport ceiling --photo copyright Kyi May Kaung

SuvarnaBhumi airport on Nov. 9, 2008. Photo copyright Kyi May Kaung

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Environmental artist Andy Goldsworthy --

Highly successful Indian artist in exile -- who can't go home --

Brazilian artist --

Burma jails woman cyclone journalist --

Artist Robert Rauschenberg died on May 12th --

I am posting this here because so many people "judge" the value of art based on the materials of which art works are made, which of course is bunkum.

Not to say that art can't be made from expensive materials also.

Case in point Damian Hirst's Skull, encrusted with diamonds, which is collectively owned by a group of investors, including Hirst.

Kyi May Kaung

Friday, November 14, 2008

Punished for making a Hat: Cruel Sentences, of up to 65 years, meted out by Burmese junta to activists -- condemned by USA and EU.

Green Bilu or Orge -- who eats human flesh -- at Suvannabhumi Airport in Bangkok -- photo copyright Kyi May Kaung

"Shwe Maung was imprisoned in 2002 for making a symbolic gold-coated copper hat, known as kha mauk, which was the emblem of NLD party when it won in the1990 elections. The hat is a recognized NLD symbol and was intended as a gift for NLD leader Aung San Suu Kyi." Irrawaddy Newsletter.

Malaysian Embassy Batik Fashion Show --

Real Malaysian Women -- others anorexic -- photo copyright Kyi May Kaung

In the purple -- Photo copyright Kyi May Kaung

"Michelle Obama would look stunning in this." Photo copyright Kyi May Kaung

(Don't give me) that look -- photo copyright Kyi May Kaung

Shocking pink -- photo copyright Kyi May Kaung

Tunku Abdul Rahman -- photo copyright Kyi May Kaung

Chandelier -- matched by star below on marble floor -- Malaysian Embassy -- photo copyright Kyi May Kaung

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Mark Rothko paintings at Tate Modern --

Disturbing "developments" or rather retrogressions regarding Burma.

Cockatoo head stuck in cage -- photo copyright Kyi May Kaung --

Disturbing "developments" or rather retrogressions -- regarding Burma --

At least for the past six months or so I have noticed a disturbing trend in news coverage of Burma, commentary by "experts" -- some self-styled, I am sure, and at international seminars on Burma, of which I have been a more or less regular attendee since 2001.

1. More people, some well-known "dissidents" are buying into, or letting themselves be bought into, the Burmese military junta's 2010 "elections" and their legitimation of their so-called "constitution."

2. Nargis Cyclone has become a gravy train for the junta and the non-profits around it.

3. There is too much unjustified criticism of Daw Suu, who has been under arrest since the Depayin Massacre, and is kept totally incommunicado by the junta. Even her two maid/attendants are kept isolated. How do you "criticize" such a person and the NLD for "not having a game plan," "not being unified?" etc. These criticisms border on the ridiculous.

4. The anti-sanctions lobby is as active as ever, but now they plug the 2010 "election" and the junta's Indonesian style "guided democracy." Guess who will do the "guiding."

I don't believe there is need for another "election" when the results of the 1990 election, which the junta itself touted at the time as free and fair,have not been honored.

5.Unfortunately, even Gambari, Ban Ki-Moon and the U.N. have been endorsing a 2010 "election."

6. The junta is as harsh as ever, evidence being the recent sentences of the 1988 activists and the arrest of their defense lawyer and the junta's treatment of U Gambira, one of the primary leaders of the Sept. 2007 Saffron Revolution, during which Buddhist monks chanted the metta sutra.

Why are these people buying into the 2010 farce?? Is it because of Burma's newly discovered natural gas reserves??

Kyi May Kaung

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Cruel and Unusual Punishments in Burma's kangaroo courts --

Found abstract -- photo copyright Kyi May Kaung

Should people be talking reconciliation in 2010 and new elections at this time?

http://aappb. org

Trials in Burma (9): Burma's Kangaroo Courts Deliver Harsh and Cruel Sentences to Democracy Activists
November 11, 2008

The special courts held inside the Insein Prison Compound are rushing to complete the court hearing against Burmese democracy activists and Buddhist Monks, who were arrested one year ago during and after the peaceful protests in August and September 2007, and delivering harsh sentences everyday. Family members are not allowed to attend the hearing and not informed by the authorities before and after the sentencing. Three lawyers, who defended these activists, were arrested and imprisoned earlier under the charge of contempt of court and therefore, no defense lawyers were present during the sentencing.

On November 11, 2008 alone, over 30 detained activists and Monks were sentenced. Details are as follows.

65 Years for 14 Members of the 88 Generation Students, More Sentences Will Be Added Soon
14 members of the 88 Generation Students group were sentenced 65-year imprisonment each with hard labor by Rangoon Northern District Court and Rangoon Southern District Court, held inside the Insein Prison Compound, today. They are Min Zeya, Jimmy (aka) Kyaw Min Yu, Ant Bwe Kyaw, Panneik Tun, Nilar Thein (Female), Mie Mie (aka) Thin Thin Aye (Female), Kyaw Kyaw Htwe (aka) Marki, Zaw Zaw Min, Thet Zaw (aka) Zaukhto, Than Tin (aka) Kyee Than, Sandar Min (aka) Shwee (Female), Thet Thet Aung (Female), and Mar Mar Oo (Female). They were sentenced today only for five counts of indictment, 15-year each for four counts of indictment under the Section 33 (A) of the Electronic Transactions Law and 5-year imprisonment for one count under the Section 6 of the Law Relating to Forming of Organization.

They will receive more and more sentences as their trials continue under another 16 counts of indictment. They all are a part of the 35 members of the 88 Generation Students group, led by Min Ko Naing, who all were arrested since August 21, 2008. They all were charged with altogether 21 counts of indictment and are on trials since August 2008. Two more defendants were added into their cases, when Mar Mar Oo and Nilar Thein were arrested in August and September 2008.

Nine of them, Min Ko Naing, Ko Ko Gyi, Mya Aye, Pyone Choe (aka) Htay Win Aung, Aung Thu, Hla Myo Naung, Aung Naing, and Nyan Lin were sentenced six-month imprisonment under the charge of contempt of court and transferred to Ma-ubin Prison in the delta region in the end of October. Their cases are now being heard by Ma-ubin District Court, without defense lawyers. They are expected to be sentenced soon.

Since Min Ko Naing and the eight were transferred to Ma-ubin, the authorities formed the rest of the group remained in Insein Prison into two groups, with 14 members each, for continued trials. Today, the first group of 14 members was convicted and sentenced for five counts of indictment. Another group of 14 members will be sentenced soon.

Su Su Nway and Bo Bo Win Hlaing Imprisoned
Labor activist Su Su Nway and her colleague Bo Bo Win Hlaing were sentenced by a special court, held inside the Insein Prison Compound today. Su Su Nway received 12 and a half year imprisonment under Section 130 (B), 152 and 505 (B) of the Penal Code and Bo Bo Win Hlaing received 8-year imprisonment under Section 124 (A) of the Penal Code. They both were arrested on November 13, 2007.

Five Buddhist Monks from Ngwe Kyar Yan Monastery Imprisoned
A summary court held inside the Insein Prison Compound delivered six and a half year imprisonment each with hard labor to the five Buddhist Monks, arrested since September 2007. They are U Zar Nay Ya, U Agga Dhama, U Vila Thetka, U Nanda and U Eithariya, from Ngwe Kyar Yan Monastery from South Okkalapa, and arrested after the security forces brutally raided the monastery. They all were forcibly disrobed since their arrest, detained in Insein Prison and sent before South Okkalapa Township Court for trail, under the charges of the Section 143, 145, 147 and 505 (B) of the Penal Code. However, their sentences were delivered by a court held inside the Insein Prison Compound.

Nine Activists from Bogalay Imprisoned
Nine young activists from Bogalay Township, arrested since September 2007 and detained in Insein Prison, received harsh sentences today from a special court, held inside Insein Prison Compound.
Pyae Phyo Hlaing was sentenced 24-year imprisonment under the charges of Section 13 (1) of the Immigration Act, Section 17 (1) of the Unlawful Association Act, Section 17/20 of the Printers and Publishers Registration Act and Section 505 (B) of the Penal Code.
Nay Lin Aung (aka) Lin Lin was sentenced 22-year imprisonment under the charges of the same charges.
Aung Myo Paing (aka) Ahyoe, Thiha Aung (aka) Aung Aung, Phyo Maung Maung Soe (aka) Phyo Gyi, Myat Lin Htut (aka) Pyaung Gyi, Pyae Phyo Aung (aka) Hnan Mue, were sentenced 10-year imprisonment each with the same charges except Section 17/20.
Thein Zaw and Thiha Thet Zin were sentenced 8-year imprisonment each with the same charges except Sections 17/20 and 505 (B). Thiha Thet Zin is a sole survivor in his family as his parents, his wife and children were killed by the Cyclone Nargis while he was in prison.

Musician Win Maw and Group Sentenced
Mingalar Taungnyunt Township Court in Rangoon delivered sentences to three activists, including Burma's famous musician and former political prisoner Win Maw today. Win Maw received seven-year imprisonment for his leading role in video recording the bloody events of the Saffron Revolution and distribution of DVDs, contained the brutal crackdown of the junta's security forces against peaceful protesting monks. His colleague Than Naing, an active campaigner to prevent spread of HIV/AIDS, received six and a half year imprisonment and Thein Aye, former political prisoner, received two-year imprisonment.

Cyclone Survivor Imprisoned
Dala Township Court delivered a sentence to Ni Ni Mar (Female), a cyclone survivor from Dala Township, today. Ni Ni Mar, a NLD organizer from Dala Township, was arrested in October when she made a complaint that the relief items she received from the authorities were different with the items that the authorities officially announced. The authorities received relief supplies from an international NGO, called AMI, for cyclone survivors. However, they kept the original relief supplies and sold them out in the black market. They replaced with low-quality items and issued them to the cyclone survivors. When Ni Ni Mar complained about the difference, she was arrested and charged with Section 353 of the Penal Code, an offence of disturbing an official duty. Today, Dala Township Court sentenced her two-year imprisonment.

Nine Muslim Leaders Imprisoned
Maung Taw Township in Rakhine State delivered harsh sentences to nine Muslim leaders today. They were arrested by the authorities in March 2008, while they were holding a meeting at the residence of Than Tun, who is a lawyer. Among the 12 arrested, the authorities released three in exchange to use them as prosecution witnesses. They were accused by the authorities that they planned to form an illegal organization with intention to instigate unrest in the country.

Than Tun was sentenced to 13 and a half year imprisonment. Kyaw Win, who was the founder of the NLD branch in Maung Taw Township, and other 7 co-defendants, received ten-year imprisonment each.

Blooger Nay Phone Latt Received Harsh Sentence
Nay Phone Latt, a NLD member, Internet Café owner and blooger, was sentenced to 20 years and six month imprisonment by Judge Daw Soe Nyan of the Rangoon Western District Court, held inside the Insein Prison Compound on Nov 10, 2008. He was sentenced 2 years under the Section 505 (B) of the Penal Code, three years and six month under the Section 32 and 26 of the Television and Video Law and 15 years under the Section 33 and 38 of the Electronic Communications Law.
His co-defendant Thin July Kyaw received two and a half year imprisonment from the same judge. They were arrested since January 2008 and detained in Insein Prison.

Poet Saw Wai Sentenced
A famous poet Saw Wai was sentenced to two-year imprisonment by a special court held inside the Insein Prison Compound on Nov 10, 2008. He was arrested since January 2008 for his poem, which was insulting the junta's paramount leader Than Shwe as power-thirsty and foolish general. He was charged with the Section 505 (B) of the Penal Code and detained in Insein Prison.

One Monk and One Activist Imprisoned
On Nov 7, 2008, Judge U Sein Hla Oo of the Rangoon Eastern District Court, held inside the Insein Prison Compound, delivered 19-year imprisonment each to a monk and an activist. U Thaddama from Garna Puli Monastery in Twantay Township was arrested in September 2007 for his participation in the Saffron Revolution. He was released in a few days, but rearrested again in January 2008 and detained in Insein Prison. Tun Tun Naing, who lives in Insein Township, was also arrested in October 2007 and detained in Insein Prison. They both were changed with Section 33 and 38 of the Electronic Transactions Law, Sections 295 (A) and 505 (B) of the Penal Code.


Aung Din
Executive Director
U.S. Campaign for Burma
1444 N Street, NW Suite #A2
Washington, DC 20005
Tel: (202) 234 8022
Fax: (202) 234 8044

Poet/writer/activist Alice Walker writes an open letter to President Elect Obama --

This concerns us all who work for change.

I was in Thailand on Nov. 4 -- more later --

Kyi May Kaung