Contact: Roland Watson, roland@dictatorwatch.org


June 12, 2010

Please forward.

Dictator Watch has received very disturbing information. Although we do not have independent confirmation, our sources are credible.

We would note that the recent intelligence from the Democratic Voice of Burma's source, Sai Thein Win, that the SPDC (the military junta of Burma) has a nuclear weapons program, confirms what we have previously published.

Most importantly, Sai Thein Win confirms that the weapons program is centered in Thakeikkyin. We have already published two sources with this information, one in 2006 and a second in 2008. Sai Thein Win is now the third. However, there is no source with information about the state of the program at Thabeikkyin, right now. There is as yet no source from the Nuclear Battalion itself.

We remain extremely concerned that the SPDC will attempt to sidestep creating an entire atomic weapons program domestically (as Iran is doing), which program IAEA expert Robert Kelley says at the moment appears to be at a primitive stage. The much simpler alternative, and which the junta can afford (thanks to Total and Chevron), is to buy plutonium or highly enriched uranium, even fabricated metal hemispheres, and a bomb blueprint, directly from North Korea or China.

We were right about the SPDC being the world's newest nuclear threat. We have good reason to believe that the following intelligence is accurate as well.

The top general of the junta, Than Shwe, has been plundering the ancient pagodas of Burma, stealing gold and other Buddhist images, jade artifacts, and even the diamonds and other gems in the pagoda buds. These in turn have been sold to Premier Wen Jiabao of China, and others.

There have been at least two sales to China. The proceeds are being used to swell Than Shwe's already immense wealth, and also to help fund the Tatmadaw.

The pillaged pagodas include Danok; in the Bagan area; around Mandalay; and Thaton's Myathabeik. The stolen items have been replaced with imitations.

Any recent renovations at pagodas and other historical sites, anywhere in Burma, are suspect. Than Shwe has sent agents, dressed as monks, to Burma's different ethnic states. Their objective is to steal cultural artifacts, as a means to destroy the ethnic nationalities' heritage and identity. We have information that the agents have stolen items in Mon, Karen and Kachin States.

It is well known that the SPDC has been looting Burma's natural resources, including its oil and gas reserves (with Total and Chevron), teak forests, and precious gem deposits. Now it appears there is no limit to the Senior General's willingness to defile the nation he says that he protects.

This grave robbery can mean one of two things: Either Than Shwe (and his wife, Kyaing Kyaing), is so certain of his rule that he has lost all restraint; or he fears it will end and is trying to pocket as much lucre as possible before fleeing to China, or Singapore.

When Burma is free, its ancient pagodas should be carefully examined. When priceless relics of the country's heritage are discovered missing, the Burmese people know where to look.