Force-feeding Myanmar?

The government there is blocking help from getting in and there is a growing movement among some nations to have the UN get the food in there by force if need be.

Is that justified?

IMO, yes. I can’t imagine the government officials being hungry or homeless and I can’t imagine the people being opposed to supplies for medical reasons. I also can’t imagine any hostility would last long as this has “makings of a full fledged modern day peasant revolt” all over it.

Not being facetious, I wonder how the fact that (according to a televised news report, and probably on the web) Aung San Suu Kyi’s house was destroyed affects her house arrest. These sound like the kind of bastards who’d execute her for violating the terms of her detention.

Justified? Yeah, there’s very little which wouldn’t be. I won’t support it because I’m refuse to do them anything which doesn’t involve taking out the leadership, preferably by machine-gun. To do otherwise would be pointless, as they’d simply clamp down again later.

Well thoughts of forcing it upon them have are now also getting play in Time

Idiocy by Mr. Egeland.

First off, China isn’t going to pressure the junta no mtter what we do. The junta has been very good to them and has strong ties. Plus, the Chinese leadership couldn’t care less about anyone else. The worst we could do would be to raise import duties, and I doubt that we could or that such would handle the matter. We might be able to bribe the Chinese, but they would probably react negatively to pressure.

Second, giving he regime money or aid will strengthen it in the long run.

Third, the regime doesn’t like anyone from the outside except Chinese, as near as I can tell.

Fourth, while freezing the regime’s assets might be good, what exactly are we suppsed to issue arrest warrants for? “Being a giant dick.” is not a crime. Moreover, how exactly is the UN Security Council supposed to do this? Or does it get to write bills of attainder whenever it likes now?

The earthquake in China will divert Chinese emergency help so it may be necessary to intervene in Burma with direct aid. I don’t see where the government is in a position to stop aid from moving in by sea up through the Delta. For that matter, they couldn’t stop air-drops from taking place if it has air support.

The hardest hit area was also the country’s breadbasket. The crops and the ability to grow crops will be severely impacted. If there are no farmers alive to repair the damage then the country will have no way to feed itself for years to come. Due to draught problems in Australia the rice crop in that region is already at a premium so this disaster will compound itself many times over.

Currently the military is taking international aid and relabeling it with their general’s names for propaganda purposes. Not only are they delaying the arrival of the aid they are delaying its distribution and according to the site the aid is not reaching the most critical areas. That’s how screwed up the government is. I have no problem shoving a little sunshine up their skirts if it has UN approval. I would love to see a rotation of nations make a Berlin airlift until the situation is stabilized.

Obviously, skilled aid workers (medical personnel, engineers, etc.) are just as important as the supplies they bring. But couldn’t we, in effect, simply overfly Myanmar and air-drop supplies directly to remote villages? Better than nothing.

I think I read that the Junta has what–11 small planes? Would they really be able to stop us? Yes, it would be provocative on our part, but so what? What would the major fallout be?

Gee - why don’t we send in the troops to change the government, distribute food, and restore order!

It will be a lovely recipe, based on our prior work in Somalia, Beirut and Iraq!

You are quite right! It’s working out SO much better this way, ehe?


This way, only Burmese are starving. The other way, the Burmese would starve AND a bunch of Americans or UN troops would be killed.

A win/win situation no doubt.

Here is an up to date report on the situation. It’s going swimmingly…we can be proud that we sat back and let their government dither for a week while they sorted things out instead of forcing aid down their throats.


XT -

How many US lives are you willing to spend to get them aid?
How many more to put in a better government?
How many years would you like to commit US lives to providing food and cleaning up their government?

Sending in the troop has not been working too well for us in nations where we were not invited. We are still busy in two nations (Afghanistan and Iraq), and we gave up in Somalia. If we jump into this we could have another lovely little quagmire to produce flag draped coffins.

Now - I have no problem with just dropping aid bombs on them (food from above). However, I expect to use our air combat teams to destroy anything that tries to shoot (or even aim) at us. I do NOT, however, have any desire to once again send aid to a Nation that does not want it.

I’ve seen estimates that the (short term) death toll could top 100,000 people. My guess is if you used the same criteria as some use for the death toll in Iraq over the next couple of years we are talking about a lot more dead…if diesase starts to spread it could be a hell of a lot more.

Would it be worth it to send in US (or UN) troops to force aid? I’m not sure…but I’m unconvinced that it could be worse than what looks like a total fucking disaster at this point. It will only be luck if things are only bad.

Myself I think we and the international community could have done more and still stayed short of out and out invasion. I think more pressure could have been brought to bear…and for that matter the international community could have done what others suggested and simply air dropped in aid to some of the villages. Even if it was just food and water it would be better than nothing.

Because Iraq was a mistake doesn’t mean that it’s always a mistake to use (or threaten to use) force against regimes like this.


Or we could let 'em all starve and thus reduce the excess population.

:rolleyes: We just don’t learn very fast, do we?

I’m really stuck on one major point here: if we infiltrated their borders at night with C-130s at low altitude and dropped pallets of MREs and drums of potable water, by parachute, over rural areas, what could they do to stop us?

Also, other than violating their airspace, what crimes would they charge us with?

Yes, I understand that violating their airspace is an act of war. But if we don’t prosecute the war beyond dropping food, and they don’t have any way of retaliating, what’s wrong with violating their airspace and then apologizing profusely? Does the junta believe that dropping food on peasant rice farmers is equivalent to financing a revolution?

That was the only form of providing aid that I could see working. However, it appears that they have bigger issues in regards to clean water and disposing of all of the bodies. Add in the disease, and what they really need is a good outside team to clean / disinfect / bury and feed. That team would like to be protected from the junta, hence the need for either troops to invade or an agreement from the junta.

Since the US does not even recognize the military rulers, that could be a slight problem.

Do we have aid supplies nearby?

Do we have excess planes, ships, and personal to transport all the supplies?

Do we have airbases nearby?

Do we know where the food needs to go?

How long would it take to put this in place?

What other priorities would suffer while we divert all these resources?

Would the food/supplies be much good if dropped this way?

Would people end up staying where they will have future problems instead of moving as a result of the disaster?

Who’s ‘we’? Doesn’t really matter though…the international community has had aid ready to roll into the area for nearly a week…and all efforts so far have been blocked or at least interfered with by the government. ‘We’ COULD have gotten aid into the area before the weekend…and probably saved thousands of lives by doing so. If you read the article I cited aid is STILL not getting through in any kind of systematic way…and it’s not the logistics that are the (main) problem (which I assume was your point here), but the government there.

You haven’t really been paying attention to this crisis, have you?

Well…there is an episode of Survivor on. And of course the epic and enthralling race between Hillary and Obama.

Other than that there is a new disaster in China…which I’m guessing the Chinese are both in a better position to help their own citizens AND probably willing to take international aid (which is probably already rolling in).

I don’t see how it could make matters worse.

Are you proposing to move the entire country? For that matter, there are a lot of dangerous places in the world…are you proposing that they all be evacuated if it’s possible there will be another natural disaster there? It’s not like cyclones hit Burma every day you know? Or do you know? What are you getting at here exactly?


Dropping aid isn’t going to help. First off, we don’t even really know where the aid is needed, who exactly needs it, and what they need.