“It is a curse for Myanmar to be a neighbor of China.” Since Myanmar's coup, the anti-Chinese sentiment that Aung San Suu Kyi was largely able to hold at bay by aligning herself and her party with Beijing has come rushing back: theatlantic.com/international/… #WhatsHappeningInMyanmar
How might Beijing may handle dealing with the junta? If we want to look at history for a hint, Cheng Ruisheng, China's amb to Myanmar during the '88 uprising laid how China dealt with that situation in "Handling Relations with Myanmar in a Chinese Way: A Personal Reflection"
Cheng had remarkable credentials. He was China's most senior Burmese interpreter, translated for Mao, Deng Xiaoping, pretty much every top Chinese and Burmese official for two decades. He was also, until 2011, the only Chinese diplomat to have any interaction with Suu Kyi.
(There is another thread on my timeline discussing Xi's Burmese interpreter.) There are some fascinating observations. He details how Beijing stayed silent, before quietly beginning to work with the junta, the ice breaker was a shipment of soccer balls. brill.com/view/journals/…
Two other points re: China-Myanmar. Beijing worked overtime to court the NLD as they saw the writing on the wall that they would win the '15 election and '20 election. Wrote about the initial efforts in '13: mmtimes.com/national-news/… Reuters did another piece in '19 on the topic
At the same time, Min Aung Hlaing harbors some very personal grudges against China for aiding and abetting armed groups on the border, particularly the MNDAA (Kokang) who he lead operations against in 2009, before becoming commander-in-chief.
In 2014, three years after Min Aung Hlaing became C-in-C, the leader of the MNDAA, Pheung Kya-shin, suddenly reappears after years of hiding. Giving an exclusive interview to none other than the Global Times. (Interesting) In the interview, he declares this plan for revenge.
The leader of an armed ethnic group declaring war on Myanmar in Chinese state media causes a buzz. It is quickly pulled down. Pheung, well into his 80s, is true to his word. Months later the MNDAA launches an offensive against Myanmar. CN language lives on world.huanqiu.com/article/9CaKrn…
The fighting receives a huge amount of attention in Myanmar, no small feat given the near constant state of conflict in the country. It also gives a big boost to Min Aung Hlaing and the military. @jaredferrie detailed it here: reuters.com/article/myanma…

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More from @TMclaughlin3

5 Jan
Early morning arrests being carried out in Hong Kong. At least three former LegCo members from the Democratic Party, including Lam Cheuk-ting have been arrested by national security forces. As always, expect this number to grow.
According to @lokinhei Au Nok Hin, Tiffany Yuen, Fergus Leung, Alvin Yeung, Ventus Lau and Gary Fan have also been arrested. Arrests appear to be related to participation in the pro-democracy primary elections in July. Looks to be a mass round up.
Read 20 tweets
1 Aug 20
“That was frustrating,” one current reporter told me “they’ve given an impression that SCMP is anti protesters. As journalists, we should never be pro or against protesters.” A look at some tensions inside Hong Kong’s biggest English language newspaper. theatlantic.com/international/…
When I started reporting this story I was told SCMP higher ups were extremely touchy and defensive about even the slightest hint of criticism about the newspaper. And wow, they were right.
The SCMP CEO @garyliu never responded to me, but his PR people and executive editor launched a really remarkable campaign to discredit me, bad mouth my previous work, mock @TheAtlantic and avoid answering any questions directly. When they did, they ended on this note:
Read 4 tweets
24 Dec 19
A few months ago ⁦@washingtonpost⁩ began receiving docs from concerned Hong Kong police officers. The more than 100 pages detail guidelines for use of force and training, but have been repeatedly broken/ignored by officers during months of protests. washingtonpost.com/graphics/2019/…
In Sept. a journo was shot in the eye with a rubber bullet. Training manuals show officers are taught that using lethal weapons can indeed be lethal. Here for example is a graphic showing officers that the “lethal target zone” for rubber bullets includes the head.
Guidelines state that tear gas "not only affects the target [but] can also spread to nearby and even relatively far-off places and people," and warns that in areas with “densely packed offices” there are higher risks of using it. Police have fired more than 16k rounds of tear gas
Read 6 tweets

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