Esther Htusan comes from Burma – or is it Myanmar? That is the first thing discussed in this “Q&A.” Esther Htusan is a journalist who has been forced out of her country. She reported on the persecution of the country’s minorities, especially the Rohingyas. She was part of an Associated Press team that won the Pulitzer Prize in 2016. The country is now led by one of the great democracy heroes of the age, Aung San Suu Kyi. What happened? Our reporter’s name, incidentally, is pronounced TOO-sahn, like the city in Arizona.

Subscribe to Q & A, Hosted by Jay Nordlinger in iTunes (and leave a 5-star review, please!), or by RSS feed. For all our podcasts in one place, subscribe to the Ricochet Audio Network Superfeed in iTunes or by RSS feed.

Now become a Ricochet member for only $5.00 a month! Join and see what you’ve been missing.

There are 2 comments.

  1. Jerry Giordano (Arizona Patrio… Member

    This was a fascinating podcast, and I must confess that my interest was piqued by the odd coincidence that I live in that certain city in Arizona with the same pronounciation as Ms. Htusan’s name.

    The conflict appears to be more complex than indicated in this podcast, which presents the Rohingyas as an innocent and persecuted minority. I do not know the true facts, but it appears that the Rohingyas were separatists and wanted to join East Pakistan (now Bangladesh) after WWII, and the extent to which they are true natives of their region is disputed, with the Burmese claiming that they are immigrants from Bengal (most of which is in Bangladesh, though part is now in India).

    There appear to have been a long series of terrorist insurgent groups among the Rohingyas, going back to the 1940s. The Rohingyas, incidentally, are Muslim, while the majority population is Buddhist.

    Again, I do not know the true facts, but I imagine that the Burmese side would argue that the Rohingyas are something like illegal immigrants waging jihad against the nation of Burma.

    It appears that most of the Rohingyas have fled to Bangladesh, a country in which it appears (to me) that they may be in the ethnic and religious majority. Perhaps this is the best solution in the circumstances. I do not state this with confidence, as I lack enough information to judge.

    Here is the Wikipedia entry on the Rohingya conflict.

    From the map at Wikipedia, it appears that the land area involved is very small. The Rohingya appear to occupy about 1/8 of the Rakhine State in Burma, which has an area of about 14,000 square miles — so 1/8 would be around 2,000 square miles. Burma is about 261,000 square miles, about the size of Texas. 

    The Rohingya area appears smaller than Delaware — a really tiny place, only about 1/4 the size of Pima County (in which I live).

    • #1
    • May 28, 2019, at 5:45 PM PDT
    • Like
  2. Ricochet Editors' Desk Editor

    Jerry Giordano (Arizona Patrio… (View Comment):

    This was a fascinating podcast, and I must confess that my interest was piqued by the odd coincidence that I live in that certain city in Arizona with the same pronounciation as Ms. Htusan’s name.

    The conflict appears to be more complex than indicated in this podcast, which presents the Rohingyas as an innocent and persecuted minority. I do not know the true facts, but it appears that the Rohingyas were separatists and wanted to join East Pakistan (now Bangladesh) after WWII, and the extent to which they are true natives of their region is disputed, with the Burmese claiming that they are immigrants from Bengal (most of which is in Bangladesh, though part is now in India).

    There appear to have been a long series of terrorist insurgent groups among the Rohingyas, going back to the 1940s. The Rohingyas, incidentally, are Muslim, while the majority population is Buddhist.

    Again, I do not know the true facts, but I imagine that the Burmese side would argue that the Rohingyas are something like illegal immigrants waging jihad against the nation of Burma.

    It appears that most of the Rohingyas have fled to Bangladesh, a country in which it appears (to me) that they may be in the ethnic and religious majority. Perhaps this is the best solution in the circumstances. I do not state this with confidence, as I lack enough information to judge.

    Here is the Wikipedia entry on the Rohingya conflict.

    From the map at Wikipedia, it appears that the land area involved is very small. The Rohingya appear to occupy about 1/8 of the Rakhine State in Burma, which has an area of about 14,000 square miles — so 1/8 would be around 2,000 square miles. Burma is about 261,000 square miles, about the size of Texas.

    The Rohingya area appears smaller than Delaware — a really tiny place, only about 1/4 the size of Pima County (in which I live).

    Listeners may be interested in Jay Nordlinger’s piece on the Rohingya situation, from February 2018: here. Below is an excerpt:

    “Among the Rohingyas are militants, who form rebel groups: militias. They have existed for decades. In 2016 and ’17, some of these militants attacked police posts, killing at least a dozen officers. This led to massive reprisals against Rohingya people at large.

    “In 1942, two Czechoslovakians killed General Heydrich, the Reich Protector. In response, the Nazis burned the village of Lidice to the ground. They killed all the men and sent the women and children to concentration camps, where many were gassed to death. In Rakhine State, Burmese forces had one Lidice after another — scores or hundreds of them.

    “The whole range of human savagery was unleashed on the Rohingyas. Villages razed, women raped in front of their husbands, the husbands killed, babies murdered in front of their mothers, the mothers killed, etc. This is exactly what ISIS recently did to the Yazidi people in Iraq. In Burma, Rohingyas trying to flee by boat were gunned down in the water.” 

    • #2
    • May 29, 2019, at 9:43 AM PDT
    • Like