The ‘spring’ that Myanmar has been experiencing since 2011 has its own rationale and origins, but like democratic change elsewhere owes much of its principles and direction to Western ideas. Burmese reactions to the Arab uprisings have been mixed, with many Burmese disturbed by the unruly and violent nature of events in many parts of the Middle East. But even the problematic aspects of the Arab uprisings serve as a reminder to the Burmese authorities – as well as the Burmese people – that denying popular opinion is a high-risk strategy. Therefore, the Arab uprisings act as a reinforcing underpinning for Myanmar’s own ongoing, and as yet unfinished, ‘democratization’ process. The Burmese authorities and the Burmese populace always take a keen interest in developments in the rest of the world. (It is a myth that Myanmar’s isolationist arrangements in international access and travel mean that its people ignore or...
|Title of host publication||Democracy and Reform in the Middle East and Asia: Social Protest and Authoritarian Rule After the Arab Spring|
|Editors||Amin Saikal, Amitav Acharya|
|Place of Publication||London, UK and New York, USA|
|Publisher||I B Tauris & Co Ltd|
|Publication status||Published - 2014|