These quotes give first hand accounts and insights into the struggle of the Kachin. The speakers include both Kachin people and outside voices.
“Even if all of us are killed by the government army …., we’d hope that the last Kachin who remains alive continues to be a Kachin, not a Burmese.” Rev. Pungga Ja Li
“No process of reform will succeed without national reconciliation. You now have a moment of remarkable opportunity to transform cease-fires into lasting settlements, and to pursue peace where conflicts still linger, including in Kachin State. Those efforts must lead to a more just and lasting peace, including humanitarian access to those in need, and a chance for the displaced to return home.” President Obama in his speech at Yangon University
“We’re approaching one.” Aung San Suu Kyi, when asked where Burma’s development towards democracy stands on a scale from 1 to 10.
“This ( the ethnic issue) is the most intractable problem facing the state since independence. I would argue it is more important than ‘democracy’ as an issue,” – David Steinberg, a Myanmar scholar at Washington’s Georgetown University.
“It’s possible… I do not hold to non-violence for moral reasons, but for practical and political reasons.” – Aung San Suu Kyi – when asked about abandoning non-violence - REITH LECTURES 2011: SECURING FREEDOM
“When Ban Ki-Moon came to Burma, he didn’t even mention the ethnic groups.” – Gen. Gam Shawng – KIA Chief of Staff
“There are already so many gross human rights abuses & so much oppression now I can’t imagine what it would be like if we had no arms to defend ourselves.” – Pastor in Laiza when asked about liberation theology.
“Kachin children have to speak only Burmese… So our Kachin language and culture are disappearing.” – Student at the KIO Teacher Training Collage.