FAR EAST CORRESPONDENT — Burma and Vietnam – at least on the surface – have much in common. Both are authoritarian states which must endure an overbearing military that insists on having its say in civilian government.
In bowing to the army, authorities in Naypyidaw and Hanoi have also been equally dismissive of the historical role the Buddhist clergy has played in legitimizing the rule of their country’s leaders in the eyes of the broader population.
It’s an issue that goes to the heart of acceptance, and was played out on the streets of Rangoon in 2007 when the Burmese military paid no heed to centuries of religious respect and brutally cracked down on peacefully protesting monks. Read more from Luke Hunt in The Diplomat.