Myanmar History Part I

Myanmar History 1

Burmese empires

According to paradisdachat, the Pyu and Mon peoples can be identified as the first civilizations in the area of ​​today’s Myanmar, traces of which date back to the 1st millennium BC. Go back BC. As the location of the city-states of the Tibetan Burmese Pyu (Beithano, Sri Ksetra, Halin and others) shows, their settlement area was essentially identical to that of the later Burmese (Bamar), who probably immigrated from southern China during the 1st millennium AD. These took over the civilizing achievements of the Pyu, especially in the fields of irrigation agriculture and architecture. When the kingdoms of the Mon and Pyu in the 8th / 9th centuries Century u. A. were weakened as a result of campaigns by the Nanzhaoreiches (Nanchaoreiches) and internal disputes, the leadership passed to the Burmese, who had been strengthened by new waves of immigration. Starting with King Anawrahta (1044-77), they created their first large empire by conquering the Mon region near the sea and further territorial expansion. The pagodas and temples in Pagan, which are still impressive today (Bagan, founded in 849), the center of this great empire, testify to the economic strength, based on the rice-growing areas of Kyaukse, Minbu and others, and a cultural boom.

After the collapse of the Pagan Empire at the end of the 13th century, forced by the confrontation with the Mongols ruling China under Kubilai , competing small empires emerged in the central basin, among which Ava (Inwa) temporarily dominated. Regardless of the increasing immigration and influence of the Shan , they were a continuation of the Burmese dynastic tradition. Starting from Toungoo (Taungngu) am Sittang , the new center of power for the Burmese, succeeded from the middle of the 16th century under King Tabinshwehti (1531–50), his general Bayintnaun (King 1551–81) and his son Anaukpetlun(1606–28) reunification to form the empire. After its collapse in the middle of the 18th century through the victory of a Mon army, Alaungpaya (1752–60) was able to establish another empire and, with the Konbaung dynasty, establish the last Burmese line of rule, which existed until 1885.

British rule

With its western expansion, the Burmese Empire came into conflict with the British, who gradually took possession of the country in three so-called Anglo-Burmese wars (1824-26, 1852, 1885): 1826 Arakan (Rakhine) and Tenasserim (Tanintharyi), 1852 sub-company to Prome (Pyay), 1885 Upper Burma and mountain areas. In 1886 the last Burmese king Thibaw was exiled to India with his family and Burma was completely attached to British India as a province. In the central basin (Burma proper), Great Britain exercised direct rule, in the mountain areas (frontier areas) indirectly, ie with the help of the peoples there.

Until the beginning of the 20th century, the anti-British resistance was aimed at preserving the Buddhist-defined identity of the population of central Burma (predominantly Burmese) or the dominance of the ethnic elites (Young Men’s Buddhist Association, founded in 1906). That of Saya San (* 1876, † [executed] 1937)The peasant uprising led in 1930–32 was the last movement with a restorative concept, at the same time fed by current social concerns. The university strike in 1920 and the Do-bama Asi-ayon (“We-Burman Association”, founded in 1930) set modern accents in a national movement that was supported by young intellectuals who were educated in the West but connected to their own culture. It also became known as the “Thakin Movement,” as the members put the title Thakin (lord, master) in front of their name. Many later political leaders emerged from this, such as Aung San and Nu .

The separation from the colonial association of British India (1937) with its own constitution expanded the scope for local politicians, but left the key positions in British hands.

Second World War

Trusting the promise of independence within the framework of the “Greater East Asian Prosperity Sphere”, Aung San and others cooperated. political leaders with Japan by taking part in the expulsion of the British with the army set up in Bangkokat the end of 1941 and being available for the government under Ba Maw (* 1893, † 1977) . Disappointed by the brutal rule of the Japanese, which made the independence proclaimed on August 1, 1943 a farce, as well as in view of the looming defeat of the war in Japan, the patriotic forces united in mid-1944 in the Anti-Fascist People’s Freedom League (AFPFL, German Anti-Fascist People’s Freedom League), whose military wing under Aung San with the armed uprising on March 27, 1945 initiated the expulsion of the Japanese in alliance with the British.

Myanmar History 1