Speech delivered by Commander-in-Chief of Defence Services Senior General Maha Thray Sithu Min Aung Hlaing at the Parade of the 77th Anniversary Armed Forces Day on 27th March 2022  

March 28, 2022

Our Tatmadaw imbued with the immense prestige etched in the annals of history remained steadfast in its commitment to resuming Independence, safeguarding Our Three Main National Causes, restoring State peace and development, and now is the date of our Tatmadaw to commemorate the 77th Anniversary of Armed Forces Day.
Tatmadaw in collaboration with the people makes a tryst with destiny for Independence under the aggression of the British Imperialists on 4th January 1948.
Since the political dissent and ideological differences amongst our ethnic groups ignited from the spillover effect of the Divide-and-Rule policy of the British Imperialists became feeble, the blaze of civil war spiralling out-wards our country has occurred at the very date of Independence. Before hand, the government was ironically denoted as Yangon Government; meanwhile, Tatmadaw initiated the decisive battles with much sacrifice and restored the State’s peace and stability. Similarly, Tatmadaw launched the thirty major operations which entailed the Mekong operation and minor ones to protect from foreign intrusion like the Kuomintang invasion from 1950 to 1961.
Furthermore, with the full retention of nationalistic fervour and the upright stance, Tatmadaw was responsible for safeguarding the country in the meantime of State of Emergency as the political crisis in 1958, the potential threats of the Union disintegration in 1962, and the insurrection and devastation of administrative mechanism in 1988.
With much sacrifice of lives, Tatmadaw annihilated the insurgents who violated the sovereignty of the country in the post-1988. Likewise, I am very much honoured that Tatmadaw embraced to uphold Our Three Main National Causes even though it has experienced with different political systems of the successive government bodies in the period of Independence struggle to date.
It is convinced that each political system is very important to change subtly for all over the countries. Political, economic and social infrastructures duly promulgated by Tatmadaw are the salient points of building a Nation since its assumption of State Responsibility in 1988. The Constitution which is quintessential for the democratic system of our country and implementation of the market-oriented economy has been prescribed. In 2010, Tatmadaw has designed to foster the Multi-Party Democracy System desired by people and to lead a smooth democratic transition. I would like to impart that these aforementioned factors are the avowed intention of Tatmadaw to the country and people.
In the tempestuous period, it is unquestionable that only the strategic provocation of some superpower countries to others is no longer hailed in the conventional ways but other unconventional forcible means in terms of politics, economics, social, propaganda and diplomacy. Thus, information and communication technology, electronic and mechanical engineering technology have to be well-practised to win victory in modern warfare.
It is also needed to learn about modern military tactics, strategies and leapfrogging technology. Therefore, the National defence power would be developed by the cohesive forces of the Army, Navy and Air with the high composition of human resources and advanced technology.
Every military personnel has to be competent in their respective fields and vocational training is also needed to sustain the combat capability and combat power and to ripen into the fully-fledged military personnel. Training is the fundamental task to be efficient in military capabilities and also required to conduct with our military training motto, “Study, Practise, Comply” for individual and communal works.
Since our Tatmadaw is the strongest institution that is responsible for the National defence duty, unity within the organization is pivotal. As the foreign aggressors and a bunch of self-interested political parties in the country are trying to disintegrate the Tatmadaw in an act of internal and external mischiefs, it is always needed to have a strong sense of unity within the organization.
Military personnel, hence, are required to precisely abide by the Codes of Conduct to remain constant unity within the organization and I would like to urge that military personnel and their family members are to live together in pursuit of the right perception, belief and stance in the same manner. Moreover, individuals have set in their hearts family figures with mutual understanding and due respect embracing the comradeship spirit.
Not only a strong sense of unity within the organization but outside the organization is also important. As our Tatmadaw is the only institution hailed from the ethnic people, it has to safeguard the lives and property of the people and to assist in the daily social life security of the people in all directions.
Concerning the preventive, control and treatment measures of COVID-19 anguished by our country and the globe, the third wave of COVID-19 was successfully overcome by the effective cooperation amongst Tatmadaw, people and relevant organizations in unison. Therefore, the collaborative efforts of Tatmadaw and people are to sustain in the areas of the vaccination process and follow the COVID-19 restrictions to prevent the potential forthcoming wave of COVID-19 to some extent.
As our Tatmadaw is well-organized and always in readiness, the Humanitarian Assistance and Disaster Relief (HADR) process could be accelerated on time without someone’s commitment per the statement, “Life Matters Most” while the unacquainted reasons of natural disaster come to us. If so, Tatmadaw and the people will be in harmony and unity outside the organization will be at full strength.
Tatmadaw personnel are obliged to be loyal to the country and people are the ones who are responsible for the duty to defend the Nation, the duty to undergo training and the duty to serve the interests of the people. For the sake of communal contributions, the National defence duty taken by Tatmadaw personnel with their own consent and spiritual conduct means to safeguard the people at the bottom end and Our Three Main National Causes denoted as the National duty at the top either.
Every military personnel has to behave like a good soldier who is proud to be a dignified and soldierly life in the noblest form. Furthermore, it is also needed to heighten an individual’s life career through promulgated laws, rules and regulations, good morale and morality, and obedience.
Adhering to the rules and regulations by each military personnel, it is needed to preserve the virtuous tradition of Tatmadaw and to be a well-disciplined Tatmadaw, a well-regulated institution and an organization of quintessential example of discipline. The composition of good soldiers and leaders is required to build up a prestigious institution, Tatmadaw. To become a good soldier, it is needed to be a man of discipline followed by obedience.
Besides, it has to be fully-fledged with knowledge and expertise to become good leaders who are needed to acquire the high composition of experience and rational thought with the sixteen characteristics of leadership. I would like to say that a prestigious institution, Tatmadaw composed of good soldiers (subordinates) with good discipline and obedience, and good leaders (superiors) with rational thought could serve the National defence duty in full strength as a capable Tatmadaw and well-established institution.
As every military personnel joined the Tatmadaw to defend the country by their own consent and moral virtue, I would like to urge you to be proud of your selfless sacrifice and to be the good soldiers entrusted by the country and Tatmadaw.
Cooperation with the International and regional countries is moving forward to constitute a country more stable and developed. Not only a country but also the globe including regional countries encounter conventional and unconventional security threats via a transnational form.
Therefore, friendly relations in defence and security measures with the International and regional defence forces are going to be promoted. Tatmadaw in a collaboration with the International countries including members of ASEAN countries and ASEAN (Plus) countries is enthusiastically participating in regional Dialogues, Workshops and Conferences to prevent the terrorist acts and terrorism which mainly threatened the world’s countries at present.
I would like to impart that cooperation with the International and regional countries will be surely promoted because the capability and defence power can be strengthened.
Back in history, Independence had been restored with the strength of unity, courage, patriotism, perseverance of all ethnic people. After Independence, the power and strength of sovereignty of the State are feeble because of internal armed conflicts. As a result, the development of the country lagged behind the neighbouring and regional countries.
Tatmadaw makes the annual peace dialogue with Ethnic Armed Organizations (EAOs) to deal with internal armed conflicts which are the major deterrence to State development. It is convinced that some non-signatory ethnic armed organizations are asking for unilateral propositions towards their self-interests while other signatory organizations are heading towards peace dialogue.
After fostering democracy transition in 2010, Tatmadaw extended peace offers in multi-party democracy government term. The 10 Ethnic Armed Organizations (EAOs) had signed in the Nationwide Ceasefire Agreement (NCA) with the commitment of peace dialogue made gradually by the representatives.
Ethnic Armed Organizations (EAOs) based on the diversity in politics, ethnicity, and ideology came into existence in the Independence struggle and post-independence whereas some negligent organizations are contrary to democracy in the democratic transition in 2011. Moreover, some armed insurgents also came into being after the 2020 election. It can be seen that some prevailing terrorist acts ignited from some Ethnic Armed Organizations (EAOs).
Tatmadaw will continue the peace negotiation process with the signatory organizations in Nationwide Ceasefire Agreement (NCA) for achieving eternal peace apart from terrorist organizations and their supporters, and hold the open-ended peace talks with non-signatory Ethnic Armed Organizations (EAOs).
The Independence Day restored by the unity and effort of all ethnic people will be the 75th Anniversary on 4th January 2023. For the cessation of internal armed conflicts in the period of Diamond Jubilee Independence Day in advance, Tatmadaw will strive to achieve Independence longevity and State prosperity. Tatmadaw made a unilateral ceasefire for over 4 years from 21st December 2018 to the end of 2022.
I would like to impart that Tatmadaw will conform as much as possible under the statement of the Nationwide Ceasefire Agreement (NCA) for eternal peace by offering open-ended peace talks.
Our Tatmadaw has been carrying out counter-insurgency and anti-terrorist operations to nestle the stability of the Nation. I would like to say that Tatmadaw will no longer take into account negotiation with the terrorist groups and their supporters for killing innocent people, the government staff of Health, Education, and Administration without reasons and for threatening the social life security of the people who want to live serenely, and will annihilate them to an end. I would like to highlight that there are no governments or armies worldwide that negotiate with any terrorist groups. Here, I would like to urge Ethnic Armed Organizations (EAOs) to avert from supporting terrorist groups in terror acts and to live within a legal framework.
To build the Union based on Democracy and Federal System, furthermore, the EAOs need to cultivate an attitude in which a Union Spirit regarding the entire Union as one family as well as one home without doing unilateral propositions, and need to partake in the peace process as soon as possible. I would like to mention that Tatmadaw has to safeguard the National interests of the people and the country without the acceptance of all acts detrimental to Our Three Main National Causes, and will put an emphasis on the end of armed conflicts for long-lasting peace.
As an election can no longer be free and fair under coercive measures, it is inexorable that a free and fair multi-party democratic election must be pure and clear of the threats and coercions.
It is known that although Tatmadaw repeatedly asked for the instance of voting irregularities in the multiparty general election held in November 2020, they neglected and failed to respond to the requests and resumed the third time of Hluttaw to take over the sovereignty of the Union by wrongful forcible means, therefore, Tatmadaw unavoidably assumed the State responsibility by lawful means according to the Constitution 2008 and established the State Administration Council on 1st February 2021.
The large-scale violence, opposition and public referendum have occurred at the very date of the State Administration Council. Afterwards, terrorist acts, sabotage, looting and slaughter have been committed through peaceful protests. As the economic impact dealt with the COVID-19 pandemic came into being, Tatmadaw, on the other hand, endeavours to uphold the common occurrence for paving the way to democracy by the Constitution 2008.
Ever since Tatmadaw assumes the State’s responsibility for a moment, the State Administration Council imbued with the Five-Point Road Map and the Nine-Objective is formed to ensure State Peace and Stability and to develop the Nation in all sectors. To implement the Five-Point Road Map, Tatmadaw scrutinizes steadfastly retained reference to voting and embarks on a nationwide project of issuing National Identity Cards to everybody at the age of suffrage to vote. Preparations on eligible voter lists aimed to be corrected are also underway.
Regarding the new mutation COVID-19, the preventive measures are being carefully accelerated to obviate infection of COVID-19 as the forthcoming wave. As a path to recovery of the impact of education and economic sectors due to the pandemic, Basic Education Schools and Higher Education Schools (Universities) have been reopened to attain the threshold level of education regardless of time-consuming for students at the age of erudition. Besides, any prolific measures in all sectors development in oneness of all regions and states are being implemented to be an equality of opportunity. Therefore, the development stature shall be fulfilled by the country whereas individuals are to take responsibility by themselves in the related regions. Moreover, the administrative bodies have to charge for proper conduct as well.
By that means, it is cautious that the destructive elements are the main hindrances. Only if there is law enforcement and stability, the socio-economic, country and regional development will be promoted. The Two-National Agenda: the prosperous identity of the Nation and food self-sufficiency and the Two-Political Agenda: fostering the disciplined and genuine multiparty democratic system, and building the Union based on Democracy and Federal System are going to be implemented. Similarly, the ongoing process of peace and national sovereignty will be continued. Consequently, I would like to impart that the military personnel are to collaborate with the aforementioned agenda embracing to shoulder the array of responsibilities.
Through the historical context, it can be witnessed that the Kings empowered the administrative authorities to the Governor, Suzerain, Count, and Village Chief in the respective regions and the hierarchy system of administrative mechanism to be loyal to the King has been practised. Responsibility of royal decree for every single administration and judicial authority by the designated ranks has been released since Thalun King of Nyaungyan Dynasty (AD-1637). The King’s reign encompassed all aspects of the country with a systematic administrative approach.
After relinquishing Independence, two alternative administrative mechanisms in the frontier area and Burma proper have been practised under the rule of the colony. After Independence, it can be seen that the successive leaders of the country had exercised a variety of administrative mechanisms entailed the Parliament Democracy System and Socialist Democracy System. Based on the geological features of where they belong, our people who are of different races, languages and religions have been nestled in the serene shelter in the past. Our country is a Union that stands tall with a prosperous identity, territorial integrity and sovereign State reality. Through the annals of history, our national races nestled in the Union and Tatmadaw also put an effort into the execution of the word, “Union” by the National Hero, General Aung San.
Our country has to rigidly stand with a Union based on Democracy and Federal System elected by people. Democracy, herein, is an administrative mechanism chosen by people and the Federal System is a system of dividing up authoritative power and sharing an equal opportunity. Notwithstanding the designation of the Federal System laying hedges, the system that met the requirements of the country will be practised.
Accordingly, our country is designed to develop the Union based on Democracy and Federal System accompanied by the promulgated State of Emergency with the bedrock of the system. Our country is heading towards a general election which is a free and fair multi-party democracy and is composed of a proportional representative by all National races.
For the sake of the interests of the Nation and its people, I would like to leave a word that Tatmadaw remained steadfast in the national duty stipulated to raise the National Causes-cum-the Nation Building but could no longer muster the polity.
In conclusion, I would like to reiterate you to keep on achieving the objectives of the 77th Armed Forces Day as follows:
– To underpin the leading role of the National politics for the emergence of the Union based on Democracy and Federal System while safeguarding the Constitution 2008 of the Republic of the Union of Myanmar
– To conduct with the strenuous effort in the National Agenda: the prosperous identity of the Nation and food self-sufficiency by the government
– To entwine with all ethnic people in the National reconciliation and peace process
– To assist in holding a general election which is a free and fair multi-party democracy for the development of the Union based on Democracy and Federal System after the State of Emergency provisions
– To build a strong, capable and modern patriotic Tatmadaw to protect the National interests of the State