Monday, July 03, 2006


Enemies of the Burmese Revolution

Last month underground democracy activists in Burma published and secretly distributed a list entitled Enemies of the Burmese Revolution . It contains the names of the five hundred and sixty eight individuals doing the most to stand in the way of democracy and freedom in Burma.

Alongside brutal dictator General Then Shwe, Regime thug U Tun Min Latt-renowned for beating political prisoners to death, Chinese dictator Hu Jianto and democracy-activist-turned-government-agent Dr. Zarni were a few more familiar faces:

Jean-Paul Vettier was Total's President of Refining and Marketing up to this year; from his comfy office in Paris he oversaw Total's investment in Burma coordinating Total's support for the regime, the employment of raping and looting soldiers and the systematic destruction of Burma's environment as well as the use of slave labor which, of course, 'never happened'

Also featured on this list is Michel Bénézit who took over from Vettier this year. He inherited Vettier's healthy wage-packet and continued the devastation of lives and country. Significantly Bénézit featured in Total's decision to pay off six villagers who had them in court for Total using them as slave labor on the Yadana pipeline. Total claimed that the villagers had never been used as slaves but decided to pay them anyway on the condition that they dropped the country case (suspicious??) -who says he doesn't earn his money?

Next up is Mr. O. Greiner, listed for his work as Total's CEO in the Netherlands. Mr. O Greiner apparently isn't important enough to have his photo published on Total's website but is certainly significant enough to appear in Enemies of the Burmese Revolution for his collaboration in some of the worst human rights abuses on the planet

Finally is our old friend Jean-François Lassalle. A known visitor to this site, Mr. Lassalle has been listed as an enemy of Burmese democracy for his work as Total's spin doctor- fronting elaborate claims over Total's decision to pay off six former slaves who had them in court and over the girl who was gang-raped by Burmese soldiers guarding the Yadana pipeline-an incident Mr. Lassalle cleverly dismissed by claiming an 'investigation' had proved the rape never happened but failing to provide any details of the investigation (including whose investigation it was!) or proof that it had even ever been carried out. He also lead Total's damage limitation missions when the international coalition led by Burma Campaign UK stepped up the heat last year.

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