Myanmar Spring Chronicle – May 06 Scenes
MoeMaKa, May 07 2023
Motion Picture Academy awards ceremony held by the military council; Danger of the storm under the deteriorating administration
The military council has tried to hold the Motion Picture Academy Awards ceremony in 2023, which has not been held since 2020, when the outbreak of Covid-19 began, and today, the ceremony of the Motion Picture Academy Awards for the past 3 years is held in Nay Pyi Taw.
After the military coup in 2021, dozens of people from the film industry were arrested and charged under Section 505-A for participating in protest movements against the military coup and supporting protests on social media.
More artists participated in anti-coup movements in 2021 compared to the time after the 1988 uprising, and the military council arrested such actors, singers, and artists and put them in prison for years.
Last year, prominent actors and singers were released with amnesty.
The purpose of the military council holding the Academy Awards is to show that the situation in Myanmar is normal, to reorganize some of the artists who were arrested and punished, and then released in 2022, and to prove that the field of art is not actively opposing the military council as the Spring Revolution says. The military council is proving that, if people who have been arrested and imprisoned for years, such as Pyay Ti U, Endra Kyaw Zin, Lu Min, Paing Takhon, etc., want to continue to work, they can’t boycott such events like the Academy event held by the military council.
In a situation where the activists of the Spring Revolution are calling for a boycott of the military council’s academy event, it is the sense that the military council convinced prominent artists who actively opposed the military coup with the academy event.
In fact, after the coup, the fields of filming, art, and music, are not in a condition to be able to entertain the public with full essence. As cities and rural regions are not peaceful, and political disagreements are deep there, there are hardly any people who will watch films in cinemas, and the creation of new films has been in significant decline. As for the singers, there is no condition to hold music concerts like stage shows, so it can be seen that there is no condition to entertain the public. It has become a situation where they can only create and present commercials and short films on social media, online, and on television. When millions of people are refugees fleeing war, when thousands of villages are burned and destroyed, and when thousands of lives are lost, millions of citizens are not in a position to enjoy art.
After the military coup in 2021, dozens of artists, who were issued arrest warrants by the military council, fled to the border areas, and most of them settled in third countries and abandoned their art. It can be said that the military coup destroyed not only the political field and the economy, but also the fields of health, education, and culture.
Another topic for today is the cyclone that is likely to hit Myanmar’s coastal areas next week. Cyclones, which occur during the hottest period before the onset of the monsoon, are often severe and reminiscent of Cyclone Nargis, which hit on May 2, 2008.
According to the latest storm forecast, the cyclone will reach storm level on May 8 and 9, and there is a possibility that it will reach the coast of Myanmar’s Ayeyarwady region and southern Rakhine around May 13 near the end of the week.
There are already predictions that the military council that governs and manages these areas will not be able to effectively warn and prevent the danger of a severe storm that may enter soon. The military council, which is only trying to win over the opposition armed groups, will not take natural disaster prevention and rescue activities seriously, and the local public has little confidence in the administration of the military council, so danger warnings will not be very effective.
If a natural disaster were to occur, the public would have to bear its effects severely under an already damaged economy and health care system. In almost every country, when a natural disaster strikes, the military has to work as an emergency force to help with relief. But for Myanmar, if there is a natural disaster in a situation where trust between the military council’s armed forces and the public is destroyed, it will be a situation where there is no other way for the public to help each other.