Jack Dorsey, Posting About Myanmar on Twitter, Is Accused of Being Tone Deaf

HONG KONG — Twitter’s chief government, Jack Dorsey, recent off a silent-meditation retreat in Myanmar, was so smitten along with his go to that he posted a sequence of glowing tweets in regards to the nation and its folks, urging others to journey there.

But his posts on Sunday had been referred to as out by many on Twitter for not mentioning the plight of the Rohingya, a largely Muslim minority group that has confronted a ruthless marketing campaign of violence and persecution by the hands of Myanmar’s army that triggered tons of of hundreds to flee.

Mr. Dorsey now faces a backlash from critics who described his journey missives — which included an outline of how he used his Apple Watch in airplane mode to trace his coronary heart price throughout meditation and relaxation — as politically tone deaf.

Myanmar has denied that its military committed atrocities against the Rohingya, saying it was merely responding to attacks by Rohingya militants. But United Nations experts said in August, echoing reporting by human rights groups, that top Myanmar generals should face trial in an international court for genocide against the Rohingya and crimes against humanity targeting other ethnic minorities.

In addition to physical violence, Myanmar military personnel turned Facebook into a tool for ethnic cleansing to target the Rohingya, according to former officials and other experts. Facebook acknowledged last month that it had failed to prevent its platform from being used to “foment division and incite offline violence” in Myanmar.

How all of that will ultimately affect Myanmar’s tourism industry — which has generally boomed since 2012 — is unclear.

But year-on-year visitor arrivals of American and Canadian travelers in Myanmar were down nearly 15 percent through September, and more than 26 percent for visitors from Western Europe, according to government figures. People working in Myanmar’s travel industry said in interviews on Monday that they attributed the slump to concerns about the military’s treatment of the Rohingya.

But tourist arrivals were up nearly 34 percent for Chinese travelers in the same period, and more than 10 percent for those from Asia as a whole, government figures show. Several in the tourism industry said that an overall rise in the number of Asian visitors made them optimistic about future prospects.

“If three million Westerners don’t want to come, then three million easterners will come,” said U Win Zaw Oo, the chairman of the Mandalay Tourist Guide Society. “Our country will not be ruined as Westerners want it to be. We can manage.”

Renaud Egreteau, the author of “Caretaking Democratization: The Military and Political Change in Myanmar,” said he doubted that a new era of tourism boycotts could force Ms. Aung San Suu Kyi’s political party, the National League for Democracy, to show more empathy toward ethnic and religious minorities generally, or Rohingya in particular.

Source link Nytimes.com

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