Burma-Myanmar Strong Regime, Weak State?|
Burma (Myanmar) is an anomaly. In a world marked by apparently
increasing tendencies towards democratisation, Burma remains a highly centralised
state, governed by an autocratic military regime, and firmly resistant to outside
pressures. Thousands of its citizens, fleeing political repression or poverty, now swell
the workforces or refugee camps of neighbouring countries. Burma’s formal economy,
once prosperous, is now one of the world’s poorest. At the same time, Burma now
supplies a large part of the world trade in heroin and other narcotics, and has a thriving
black market. Over recent years, against the background of political change, first in the
Philippines and more recently in Indonesia, and following Burma’s accession to ASEAN,
there has been some speculation about the prospects for regime change in Burma. To
date, however, the SPDC regime seems to be firmly in control.
In this volume (which arises from a Burma Update conference at the Australian
National University in August 1999), eight distinguished and emerging Burma scholars
examine political and economic developments in Burma, with particular attention to
the role of the military, developments in Burma’s relations with its regional neighbours
and the international community, and the prospects for change. The book represents
a substantial contribution to an area where in-depth research has been difficult, and at
the same time addresses larger, comparative themes of civil-military relations, political
economy, security studies and international relations.
(edited by) Morten B. Pedersen, Emily Rudland & R.
Portrait; softcover; xiv + 290 pages
215 x 135 mm