Birmania: la política de mal vecino de la India

NUEVA DELHI – Mientras elecciones orquestadas ratifican las consecuencias de tres décadas de régimen militar en Birmania, la perspectiva de la vecina India puede ayudar a explicar por qué existe una continua aceptación internacional de la junta que hace tantos años gobierna el país.

Birmania estuvo gobernada como parte del Imperio Indio de Gran Bretaña hasta 1935, y las relaciones entre los dos países se mantuvieron sólidas después de que Birmania ganó su independencia en 1947. En las principales ciudades de Birmania prosperaba una comunidad empresaria india y las afinidades culturales y políticas estaban bien establecidas. El líder nacionalista y primer primer ministro de la India, Jawaharlal Nehru, era un amigo estrecho del héroe nacionalista birmano Aung San, cuya hija, la premio Nobel y líder opositora Aung San Suu Kyi, estudió en Nueva Delhi.

Durante muchos años, la India defendió, sin lugar a duda, la democracia, la libertad y los derechos humanos en Birmania –y de maneras más tangibles que la retórica de los críticos occidentales del régimen-. Cuando los generales reprimieron el levantamiento popular de 1988, anularon la abrumadora victoria electoral de la Liga Nacional para la Democracia (LND) de Aung San Suu Kyi en 1990, les dispararon a los estudiantes y arrestaron a los líderes recientemente electos, el gobierno de la India inicialmente reaccionó como habrían querido la mayoría de los indios. La India les brindó asilo a los estudiantes que huían del país y una base para su movimiento de resistencia (además de ayuda financiera), a la vez que sustentó un periódico y una estación de radio que propagaban la voz democrática.

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