Letter from Young Buddhist Students Literacy Mission
July 2, 2008
It is our great pleasure to inform you that we have already distributed medicines, food supplies, clothes and other relief materials and cash to the worst hit areas of cyclone Nargis such as Bogalya, Kyauk Tan, Thilawa, Kon Chan Gon, Laputta etc. It is also our great pleasure to convey our heartiest thanks to you for your kind donation towards the victims of Nargis.
Our relief workers were deeply moved by seeing the situation in the disaster area. According to them the cyclone victims are still suffering from want of food here and there. Before 2nd May they were respectable citizens of the country. They were farmers, teachers, doctors, nurses, students etc. The next day they were beggars. How terrible it is! Today I am powerful; tomorrow I am a beggar. The Buddha's Teachings are very applicable here. Nothing is permanent; nothing is reliable; nothing is lasting.
What the junta is doing, despite national and international outcries, is also relevant: It is suffering not to get what one desires. The junta looked at everything from a political point of view instead of seeing things from humanitarian and social ground. It must be due to their fear. They will never be free from fear, as Aung San Suu Kyi has said. This kind of atrocity and cruelty was created by their minds. They damaged the lovely culture of tolerance of Buddhism by preventing contributions from local and international donors. All aid agencies and relief workers unanimously testified that they had never faced such kind of disturbances in the world like the one they met in Burma while undertaking relief measures. Reports are still coming in, even one and half months after the cyclone there are still many people who did not receive any help. Many people asked this question "Where are those people in uniform now?" They are nowhere to see while the country is facing national catastrophe. On the contrary they gave so much priority to their funny referendum and declared 92.4 % people voted to approve it. How absurd they are!
Now they have started giving problems to local donors by questioning many things. They have even begun closing down refugee camps, forcing the destitute refugees to go back to their flattened villages. International aid workers are also leaving the country now. There is no option left for them. It is very apparent that there is not a single bit of work the government. has done well for the people in the outcome of cyclone. Now they have ordered schools to open in the cyclone devastated areas without any proper arrangement.
It is true that there are still many dead bodies floating in the water. There is also concrete news of outbreaks of diseases. Even some of our relief workers became sick after breathing the contaminated air from dead bodies rotting in the water.
In fact, the Burmese government. is once again killing its people in cold blood. Reports are also coming from reliable sources that the government was picking up orphan children and taking them away to an unknown destination. They must be forcefully recruiting them into the army as child soldiers who will be mistreated like street dogs!
The need for support for cyclone survivors continues to be great. The need for protection of orphans is now even greater. We thank you for your generosity and ask you, if you are able, to be generous again. Although the initial disaster is over, the junta-made disaster continues to cause suffering to the people of the Delta area, especially the vulnerable children.
Thank you for your concern for the unfortunate people of Burma.