The Restoration Council of Shan State/Shan State Army (RCSS/SSA) that is expected to be the next armed group Naypyitaw is planning to meet sometime in the near future has been given friendly tips by officials from ceasefire groups calling themselves “well meaning friends.”
The SSA South, as it is commonly known, together with the Karen National Union (KNU) and Karenni National Progressive Party (KNPP), are somewhat affectionately known as rookies when it comes to dealing with the regime “without fists and guns” among veteran ceasefire groups like the United Wa State Army (UWSA) and others.
The tips include:
- Not to allow treatment of one in a condescending manner
- Beware of enticements to indulge in sensual pleasures
- Beware of business opportunities offered “generously” to one
“Always consider the pros and cons before doing something you might regret later,” said a 50 year old official from a ceasefire group.
All three sources SHAN talked to also warned the same thing: It is dangerous and even fatal to share drinks (which might be spiked) with regime officials.
Everyone of them believes it was because of this undue trust in their fellowmen that had forced many of the leaders to take to bed and sent some of them later to the grave:
- Zhao Yilai UWSA
- Zau Mai UWSA
- Brang Seng Kachin Independence Organization
The lucky ones they said were Sai Leun, leader of the National Democratic Alliance Army (NDAA) and Gaifa, leader of the SSA North’s 7th Brigade (now Kali People’s Militia Force), who managed to come out of the resultant afflictions alive.
“Of course, we are not saying the present regime will follow in the footsteps of its predecessor,” said another. “But it is always advisable to be careful.”
So far, Naypyitaw has held peace talks with 8 groups: KIO, UWSA, NDAA, Democratic Karen Buddhist Army (renamed Kloh Htoo Baw), Karen National Union (KNU), Shan State Progress Party/Shan State Army (SSPP/SSA), New Mon State Party (NMSP) and Karenni National Progressive Party (KNPP). It had been successful with the UWSA, NDAA and Kloh Htoo Baw. The war with the KIA however is still ongoing.