Dispatches by Brian Stiller
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Myanmar is a country of 54 million people, divided into eight major ethnic races grouped by region, more so than language of ethnic affiliation. These regions camouflage its actual 135 distinct ethnic groups! We too quickly assume that globalization is good, unifying people of all kinds of cultural strands. Democracy and human rights we value so highly are not necessarily embraced. Tribalism often rules, and Myanmar is a prime example. Mistreatment of ethnic or religious minorities is nothing new in what was formerly Burma. Internally there are some 600,000 displaced persons, not counting the tens of thousands still in camps in Thailand and other surrounding countries.
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