Contact: Roland Watson, roland@dictatorwatch.org


March 26, 2010

Please forward.

Dictator Watch has been given the results of the debriefing of a new defector out of Burma, Inspector Soe Min of the Pa-an Police Force, Karen State. He was responsible for forty subordinate officers.

Soe Min fled because one of his subordinates lost a patrol car, for which loss he was held responsible. He is presently in hiding in a large Thai city.

He was actively involved in rigging the results of the 2008 Constitutional Referendum (to see that the referendum passed), and which steps he confirms will also be used in the upcoming 2010 election.

Soe Min was ordered by his superior officer, Maung Maung, to block all “No” votes on the referendum. He was told to discard such ballots, and to replace them with false “Yes” votes.

He ordered his subordinate officers to visit all the townships under his command and tell the local USDA, Fire Brigade and other pro-SPDC factions to collect “Yes” votes from the population. These organizations threatened the people such that many individuals did in fact vote “Yes.” Still, the “No” vote was over 50% of the total. These votes were destroyed. The police pocketed the ballots at the polling stations, and then tore them up later. They were substituted with fake “Yes” ballots. Over half of the entire count for Pa-an was completely fraudulent.

Before his defection, Soe Min learned that the same actions will be conducted in the upcoming election. In addition, convicts are being recruited to vote for the SPDC in return for release or other forms of leniency.

Soe Min’s information, which for the referendum has been duplicated many times by sources from other parts of Burma, has an important implication: The 2010 election will unquestionably be rigged. This in turn begs the question of why anyone would want to participate in it, either as a candidate or voter. Any candidate who is truly for democracy is certain to be defeated. The only candidates who will win seats will be people who want to join the SPDC and share in its corruption. For the voters, individuals who intend to choose pro-democracy candidates are naïve to believe that their votes will actually count. Instead, they will be changed and given to pro-junta candidates. Other than the relatives of the SPDC and its cronies, the only other people who will vote will be individuals who have been forced to do so.

Under no circumstances whatsoever will the election legitimately reflect the will of the people of Burma. It does not matter whether the NLD chooses to register or not – although once hopes the organization will follow Daw Suu’s principled and courageous lead. No matter what happens, the entire exercise is doomed to be a fraud.

March 29 postcript: Bravo NLD! Now that the pro-democracy movement is unanimous about not participating in the election, we need to attack it in every possible way. In the coming months, there are surely many different things that can be done to foil Than Shwe's plan.