Prisoner Amnesty Surprised Outsiders, Confused Supporters
It wasn’t just the international community that was surprised. The SAC’s move also embarrassed some supporters.
Since the 2021 coup, SAC supporters and veterans have turned to Telegram messaging platform instead of Facebook. Much of the pro-military, pro-SAC discussion takes place on various Telegram channels.
However, the posts and comments on these channels about the November 17th amnesty seem to show a negative view of the commander-in-chief’s decision. Some even accused the SAC of playing politics instead of acting as soldiers.
A past example of hostage diplomacy by the Myanmar military, there is no doubt that this latest move was calculated to create a favorable view of the SAC. However, the SAC’s shift in strategy and assumptions about the timing of the pardon have given Myanmar observers pause, as Myanmar’s military government has no track record of responding swiftly to international pressure.
Changes in Myanmar’s political climate usually stem from internal rather than external pressures. Given that the SAC’s advisory entourage has not changed, it may not be outrageous to think that the SAC, through its advisors, may be taking into account new domestic variables.
Essentially, their actions since April 2021 are starting to hurt themselves.
https://www.channelnewsasia.com/commentary/myanmar-junta-prisoner-release-amnesty-diplomacy-3108866 Commentary: Myanmar junta released high-profile prisoner, but let’s not get ahead