Country of Burma now known as

Land Burma now known as

It was decided from now on that the capital Rangoon was "Yangon". Now we're changing our policy. Starting Friday we refer to Myanmar with its official name. The national anthem also refers to "bama pyi" or the "land of Burma". Myanmar people are still referred to as "Burmese".

Myanmar or Burma

After being cautioned not to call the country "Burma", Aung San Suu Kyi has given the Myanmar government the sore heel. "I call my country Burma, as we did a long thee. I don't insult other folks. Burma's electoral committee, which monitors the law on governing the party, published the appeal in the state press last Friday and cautioned them" to comply with the constitution".

" Bodies said to use the constitutional name for the country: Republic of Myanmar. You showed no regard for the population. Following the mass suppression and military outburst at the end of the 80s, the much scorned general' s were announcing their intention to name the country and many of the places in it.

This change of name was so important to the Junta that it set up a 21-member committee to deal with the issue. Only four of the members of the committee were university graduates. The newer, allegedly more genuine words "give a previously split and quarrelsome country a feeling of nationhood under a new Myanmar Union banner", and they argued that the old words used for these places were a symbol of "Britishonial history".

In fact, the army proclaimed its property in the country. The name of a country like Burma, which is polarised in political terms, is both the cause and the result of the great gap between sovereigns and theirs. Myanmar's sovereigns are living in their country. Burmese people are living in their country.

This has resulted, for example, in the US embassy in Burma not calling itself the country's name. To make things even more disconcerting, the United Nations and members of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations adopted the name changes, while the European Union initially followed the United States, but later came up with a new name for the country:

"Burma/Myanmar. "When Hillary Clinton came to Burma at the end of last year, she avoided dispute by alluding to" this country. However, the country's name change made practically no distinction for the Myanmar speaking population of Burma, who exchangeably call the country Burma and Myanmar.

However, the change of name had an even more serious impact on ethnical policy, which worries me more than the competition for legitimation between the opponents and the general ("generals"). Myanmar is a hotchpotch of many different ethnical groups. As a result of the change of name, many places that were previously formally known under their national language were given new name.

As an example, the re-naming of Shan cities, the second biggest ethnical group in Burma after the vast majority in Burma, always distorts the initial pronunciation and often results in totally unfavorable meaning in Burma. Shan for "city" is "Mong", but it is now written as "mine", which means "bomb" in Brahms.

Although the gendarmes were claiming to unite the country with their re-naming plan, the effect was indeed profoundly divided. In the last two years, high-ranking U.S. officers have softly explored the views of some of Burma's opposition campaigners on whether Washington should begin to call the country "Myanmar".

A few month ago, the Financial Times switched its use from "Burma" to "Myanmar" - the move was then attacked by Burmese leader Bertil Lintner. At first sight, I find it difficult to deny the point that the promotion of genuine transformation in this unfortunate country is much more important than caring about the name.

It' s not possible to approve the name change by naming Burma'Myanmar' without using Burmese version of the name of ethnical minorities. Till Burma has real liberty and equality of right for all its people, regardless of race, the vendetta over what to call it will go on.

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