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Burma coup resistance notes September 2, 2023
“Naypyitaw will be the last cemetery of military dictators in the near future.” U Maung Maung Swe, spokesperson of the Ministry of Defense (NUG), August 28.
On August 28 four Chin defense battalions attacked the four junta camps in and around Htantalan in an attempt to recapture the ruined town. During a ten hour battle the Chin lost 13 soldiers killed and at least 10 wounded. Twenty-four junta troops were killed that day and 60 wounded, but 13 of the wounded died the next day, with others in danger. Two officers, a major and a captain, were among the dead. Fourteen junta troops were missing after the battle, but it wasn’t known if they were killed or wounded or escaped. The Chin ambushed three truckloads of junta reinforcement coming from Hakha. Once again, the regime’s air strikes forced the attackers back and prevented the fall of the camps. An aerial photo showed the main junta hilltop camp utterly trashed by repeated drone bombing, the damage so extensive that human casualties would likely be high. (The Irrawaddy 8/29, Khit Thit Media 8/30)
Two junta troops were killed and 7 wounded when Chin forces attacked them in Mindat town on August 26. (The Irrawaddy 8/28)
The Kachin and Ta’ang fronts have now merged, as the junta mobilized 10 battalions to face both of them in northern Shan State. (The Irrawaddy 9/1)
The battle at Namsanyang intensified again on August 30 and 31 after junta supplies from the Mandalay boat convoy began arriving. There was fierce fighting in two other villages and mentions of heavy junta casualties but no numbers. Three planes dropped bombs, but the Kachin report no damage. (People's Spring 9/1)
The Kachin army and allied PDFs attacked a junta army base in Mabeim Township in northern Shan State on August 25, and captured it the next morning, along with all of its weapons. Eight junta troops were killed. (People's Spring 8/26, Kachin News Group 8/29) They then attacked junta reinforcements and supply convoys trying to get to Mabeim for 3 days in a row, stopping them from getting through. (People's Spring 9/1)
On September 1 the Kachin and allied PDFs stormed and captured a junta base in Shwegu Township of southwestern Kachin State, and was clearing the area of enemy elements. Only 7 troops were killed, the rest fled to a nearby police barracks. Weapons, money, and equipment were seized by the Kachin. (Kachin News Group 9/1)
The same day August 26 the Kachin army turned back another attempted junta advance at Madiyan near Laiza. Details are scarce, but a junta column retreated after suffering casualties during a 5-hour battle. Over 80 junta troops were already killed in the 2-month Namsanyang battle outside Laiza, as well as 30 killed in Hpakant Township during the same period, many from misplaced airstrikes by the junta itself. (People's Spring 8/26)
Two days later on August 28 the Kachin army and All Burma Student Democratic Force jointly attacked a junta base in northern Sagaing Region between Indaw and Banmauk for two days, killing 8 troops or more and wounding others. (People's Spring 8/29) It was one of many Kachin counter-attacks across northern Myanmar while the junta is pounding away in eastern Kachin State.
The junta tried to order one of its local proxy ethnic militias, called the Lontan, to attack the Kachin army in Muse Township of northern Shan State on August 29, but instead the Lontan shot at the junta troops. In a brief firefight, a junta officer and two militia members were killed. (Shwe Phee Myay News Agency 8/29)
Meanwhile, junta troops have been kidnapping large numbers of civilians as human shields/hostages in Hpakant Township. On August 25 the troops kidnapped 30 villagers and took them away. Over 100 were taken hostage, but some were later released. (The Irrawaddy 8/26, The 74 Media 8/29)
The 9-boat convoy that brought supplies to Bhamo from Mandalay up the Irrawaddy River is now returning downstream, and took with it about 50 non-CDM (junta collaborationist) government staff including doctors, who went south out of fear for their safety. The supplies delivered are meant to support the junta’s sustained, but thus far unsuccessful attempt to retake control of the Bhamo-Myitkyina road at Namsanyang village. (Myaelatt Athan 8/30) The Kachin army began attacking the truck convoys taking the supplies from the boats toward Namsanyang on August 29. (People's Spring 8/31)
The Ta’ang army (TNLA) carried out a defensive action against 16 junta vehicles crossing through its control area in Kutkaing Township of northern Shan State during an hour-long battle on August 25. The trucks carried troops and weapons. Casualty figures aren’t reported. (People's Spring 8/26)
The junta dug up a road paved by the TNLA on August 15, then the TNLA repaired it. When the junta brought an excavator to do it again on August 27, the TNLA shot the crew, killing at least 5 and wounding seven. The previous day the TNLA attacked a convoy of 20 trucks heading south from Kutkai toward Theinni. (The Irrawaddy 8/28)
The junta attacked a TNLA base in Kutkai Township and another battle began in Muse Township near the China border on August 28. At last writing the fighting was ongoing and results weren’t known. Thousands of civilians were fleeing. (Shwe Phee Myay News Agency 8/28, The Irrawaddy 8/29)
The junta tried to bomb a Ta’ang position on August 31 in Kutkai Township but hit a junta position instead, killing up to 20 of its own troops. “Looks like they got the wrong map,” a local source said about the jets. (People's Spring 8/31)
Karen army Brigade 5 attacked a junta camp at Lei Joh on August 27-28. The Karen gave no other details. (People's Spring 8/31) The Karen stormed and burned the junta’s police barracks in Papun town on August 23, with the loss of 4 Karen soldiers killed and at least 5 wounded. (Local sources)
Karen army Brigade 1 and allied PDFs intercepted a convoy of 100 troops going from Yangon toward Mawlamyaing or Myawaddy on August 27, sending a truck crashing off the road. The defense forces then fired on the survivors. Ten junta troops were killed and 7 wounded, and the convoy had to return toward Yangon, but first the frustrated troops fired their guns into a nearby village and shot holes in a tanker truck, causing it to leak oil. (Khit Thit Media 8/28)
A junta lieutenant colonel was arrested by the Karen Albino Tiger battalion while traveling disguised as a civilian in Kaw T’Ree Township of Dooplaya Distsrict on August 28. The same day the Albino Tigers also attacked junta troops in Ye Township of Mon State, killing 9 of them and wounding others; an Albino Tiger soldier was also seriously wounded. (Khit Thit Media 8/28)
Still trying to recapture the mountaintop camp at Latkatdaung near Myawaddy, the junta is bombing relentlessly. The mountain features a Buddhist temple and retreat, and the junta’s bombing has badly damaged the religious buildings, despite the dictator’s claim that he seized power to protect Buddhism. Karen Cobra commander Daw Baw offered to leave Latkatdaung if the junta would agree not to re-occupy it, in order to preserve the pagoda. (Khit Thit Media 8/30)
Junta and BGF troops have set up 10 checkpoints on the Asia Highway between Myawaddy and Kaw T’ree in the Dawna mountain range, where they demand 3,000 to 5,000 kyats from each car at each checkpoint. Karen army and PDF forces have been shooting at the checkpoints. (Karen Information Center 8/29)
Junta bombing in areas of Kler Lwi Htoo District where it has lost control has killed 5 and injured 20 civilians recently, including women, men, and children. Homes have been destroyed. Troops are firing mortars indiscriminately into civilian villages, an act of terrorism. (Kawthoolei government/KNU via Than Lwin Times 9/1)
After last week’s ambush of a junta supply column in Shadaw Township near the Thai border, Karenni forces discovered 12 dead junta troops there this week, and collected their weapons. (Than Lwin Khet News 8/29)
The Karenni advise junta soldiers and officers to send a message on Signal to +6695 8807436 to get help escaping their units and reaching safety.
An independent Revolutionary unit, the Gen Z Volunteer Fighters, merged with KNDF Battalion 1, increasing Karenni military unity and coordination. (People's Spring 8/31)
People’s Defense Forces (PDFs)-----------------
PDFs in Ayadaw Township of Sagaing Region say they dropped a large drone bomb into a hall of a Pyu Saw Htee camp on August 26 when the terrorists were drunk and sleeping, killing more than 20 of them. When survivors ran for a bunker, the PDF dropped another bomb in there, killing 4 more. They say about 30 died in total, and others were wounded. They say their drones dropped two bombs at once, the first blasting a hole in the roof, the second falling through the hole and detonating inside the building. (Khit Thit Media 8/27)
A junta combined 70-vehicle convoy and marching column with 300 troops going from Kyauktu toward Pakokku in Magway Region was attacked twice on August 22 by PDFs. The PDFs used roadside bombs and drones; in the morning attack 2 troops and 3 Pyu Saw Htee terrorists died, then in the evening 9 more troops were killed and 10 wounded. In a video, the troops marched across farmland to avoid roadside bombs, but were blown up by drone bombs. (Myaelatt Athan 8/26)
A PDF coalition drone-bombed a junta/Pyu Saw Htee camp of 40 people in Myinmu Township on August 26, dropping 11 bombs that killed 10 troops and wounded 7 Pyu Saw Htee terrorists. The PDFs seized weapons. Six civilians who were near the camp also received injuries; civilians are always advised to stay away from junta targets. (People's Spring 8/26)
Similarly, PDFs in Kantbalu Township of Sagaing Region fired on five junta/Pyu Saw Htee camps on August 26 using 81 mm and 60mm mortars. Ten people in the camps were killed, according to the PDFs. (Khit Thit Media 8/28)
Two days later on August 28 a grouping of PDFs attacked another Pyu Saw Htee camp in Minkin Township and killed between 7 and 10 junta troops and captured carbine rifles and ammunition as well as motorcycles and phones. (Khit Thit Media 8/28)
A PDF in Htee Chaing Township of Sagaing Region was inspecting traffic on August 9 when it discovered a shipment consisting of all the personal and household belongings of a junta brigadier general who was being reposted from Loikaw to Tanai. The belongings included grenades, bullets, drone jammers, computers, uniforms, etc. They belong to the PDF now. (NUG Ministry of Defense 8/28)
The Revolutionary civil government of Palay Township in southern Sagaing Region is using bulldozers and dump trucks to repair a road destroyed by the recent flooding. It needs to raise 30 million kyats to build a concrete retaining wall to prevent another collapse. (Myaelatt Athan 8/28) This is another example of the Revolutionary administration taking over governance duties in liberated territory.
PDF snipers killed a junta police commander and an army sergeant in Myaing Township of Magway Region on August 29. Troops then shot their guns a lot for 10 minutes. A Chaung Oo PDF in Sagaing Region used drone jammers to capture 2 junta scout drones.
A PDF in Kalay Township of Sagaing Region arrested three non-CDM teachers and charged them with collaborating with a terrorist group (the junta) and supporting violence, according to Revolution parliament (CRPH) law. (People's Spring 8/31)
A PDF commander in Myaing Township of Magway Region shot himself to death on August 30, reportedly due to financial pressures of keeping his troops supplied. (People's Spring 8/31)
Bombs have been exploding nightly in Yangon, mostly targeting junta police stations. On August 27 it started in Mingaladon, then on August 28 in North Dagon and Shwe Pauk Kan. On August 29 bombs went off in North and South Okalappa, Yankin, and North Dagon Townships of Yangon on the night of August 29. (The Irrawaddy 8/30)
The junta is sending Naypyitaw office staff from the air force to fight on the front lines as infantry with no training. It is placing women in the office roles in order to urgently deploy the men to defend the military capital against impending Revolution attack. (Ayeyarwaddy Times 9/2)
There has been another big reshuffling of junta army commanders in the north and center of the junta’s remaining control zones, with a particular emphasis on the defense of the military capital Naypyitaw. (Myaelatt Athan 8/27) As the junta’s rainy season offensives have failed in Kachin and Karenni and it lost key positions in Karenni and Kawthoolei, the dictator has replaced several top commanders in hopes of getting better results.
Another officer was arrested on August 20 for refusing orders to fight in the Kachin offensive. This one, Gen. Naing Naing Tun based in Bhamo, Kachin State, is famous for authoring a pro-military anthem called, ironically, “Success in Direct Proportion to Obedience.” He said he refused the order out of consideration for his family, meaning the order into battle was a death sentence, and he is prepared for the consequences. (Ayeyarwaddy Times 8/31)
A military court sentenced a junta officer to death for insulting dictator Min Aung Hlaing, and another officer to 40 years for leaking military secrets to resistance groups. (DVB English 8/31)
Junta authorities have been visiting villages around Naypyitaw Region, handing out cash, food, and other freebies, and encouraging people to support the junta army against PDFs and ethnic armies. It is trying to build support to defend the military capital as Revolution forces close in. (The Irrawaddy 8/30)
The illegal regime replaced its “governors” of civilian administration in 4 states with military generals, further dumbing down a “government” that already put generals with no relevant skills in charge of most departments. The states are Kachin, Karen, Karenni, and Chin, where the regime controls very little territory anymore. (Salween Press 9/2)
Disgruntled junta soldiers are airing their complaints in a CDM network called People’s Goal. One captain based in Shan State said he had been badly beaten by his superiors. He was unhappy because these superiors were making money off illegal logging and the profits weren’t shared with him, so he embezzled some of the timber for himself and was discovered, leading to the severe punishment. (Chindwin News Agency 8/26) During 2022 troops in Irrawaddy Region rioted because their officers were making money from kidnapping ransoms and theft without sharing the profits with them. Disputes among troops and officers frequently lead to fatal shootings.
Two junta soldiers who are brothers escaped from their battalion in Pyay city in mid-August. Other troops couldn’t find them, so they kidnapped their old father. An inside source said 9 troops from that battalion have run away over the past 10 months, and the commander doesn’t report their disappearance in order to pocket their salaries. (Myaelatt Athan 8/26)
The Chinese Wangbao copper mine in Salingyi Township, which stole the land and kicked out all the residents of Wet Hmaw village last week, this week took over Shwe Lwe village as well. With the aid of junta troops, the Chinese company built fences around the villages and prevented residents getting in to their homes. (Ayeyarwaddy Times 8/26) Wangbao and two other Chinese mines in Salingyi were originally built on land stolen from local people with Burma military support.
A column of 100 junta troops kidnapped, raped, and murdered a woman in Wetlet Township of Sagaing Region, then killed her father and two other men as well. (Myanmar Now 8/28)
Troops in Pekhon Township of Karenni land shot a young husband and wife who were working their farm on August 21, killing the man and wounding the wife in the shoulder. Then they made the extended family pay 3.5 million kyats (US$900) to release the wife and the dead husband. (Khit Thit Media 8/28)
Political and economic-------------------
A Myanmar Spring Revolution International Conference was held in Buffalo, New York, USA on August 26, discussing strategies to end the military regime and build federal democracy. The conference aimed to mobilize international support and match it to entities inside the country, and also made a list of critiques for the improvement of Revolutionary institutions. The conference was attended by representatives of the NUG, the interim parliamentary committee (CRPH), the drafting board of the new constitution (NUCC), NLD party members, ethnic homeland governments, PDFs, civil society groups, technical experts, and foreign political activists. The NUG Information Technology Minister said the suggestions resulting from the conference will be examined and implemented. (Mizzima 8/28)
The junta kicked out the Timor Leste embassy in Burma, after new Timorese president José Manuel Ramos-Horta invited the NUG Foreign Minister Daw Zin Ma Aung to attend his inauguration and snubbed the illegal junta. The Timorese government has said it is not interested in joining the regional bloc ASEAN if it cannot help restore democracy in Burma. (Mizzima 8/26) The NUG said the expulsion of the Timor Leste diplomatic delegation is illegal. (People's Spring 8/28)
NUG Foreign Minister Daw Zin Ma Aung said in a press conference that the NUG has two diplomats interacting with the government in India, though she can’t disclose their names for their safety. India has been a supporter of the illegal junta, and the NUG wants to persuade New Delhi to support the Myanmar people instead. The NUG also has outreach to the Chinese government. She said the NUG does not exclusively focus on relations with Western countries. (People's Spring 8/29)
It has now been 6 years since the same group of generals that now comprise the illegal junta regime perpetrated the genocide of the Rohingya people in Arakan State. One million Rohingyas have been living as refugees in Bangladesh since then, and 600,000 that remained behind have been confined in concentration camp prisons and deprived of citizenship and basic rights like education and freedom of movement. The NUG, the United Nations, and the Rohingyas themselves marked the anniversary by calling for the repatriation and recognition of the Rohingyas as Burma citizens.
Pita Limjaroenrat of Thailand’s Move Forward Party attended a Karen traditional wrist-tying ceremony in Bangkok on August 29, in a show of solidarity with Thailand’s minority ethnicities. Most Karen live in Kawthoolei, technically inside Burma. Pita won the May 14 election in a landslide but was kept from becoming prime minister by Thailand’s military. (Than Lwin Times 8/29)