Dear Bo Aung Din,
There is no denying that many of us are at odds with Aye Chan's version of history of Arakan. As an ultra-nationalist Rakhaing, his views on the minorities mimic those of the current hated SPDC regime, which is victimization of the minority so that such criminal actions would curry favor from amongst the majority, thus further fragmenting the already divided nation into opposing camps, while they hold onto power approvingly – the typical 19th century colonization policy, History 101.
Aye Kyaw has no problem calling the USA his home, and lives in Brooklyn, NY, only about 120 miles from my home in Philadelphia area, and yet still has the hypocrisy to deny the legitimate and moral rights of the Muslims of Arakan who call themselves Rohingyas and had lived in Arakan for centuries. Aye Chan has written a book "Influx Virus" that is calling literally for the extermination of the virus – the Rohingyas of Burma. Just imagine an Arakan version of Mein Kamf — coming from an academic! His ultra-nationalist friends run the Rakhapura website from Bangladesh, which has been taking a poll for last few months to decipher whether Rohingyas are the worst enemies or the SPDC. One ought to feel sick about such vandalism of history.
I have never found a bigot to be a democrat in his heart. A xenophobe really cares about none but his/her community.
Arakan-Burma Research Institute (ABRI) is not affiliated with any political group and has been able to point out serious flaws – historical and moral – with the arguments of charlatan scholars who do not know the fundamental thing about genuine scholarship. And that is what Prof. Bahar and I have tried to do with Aye Chan's manipulation of history – his number game, his twisting of words for historical names of Arakan, and its cities, etc.
Over the last several months, we have challenged him to debate with us, or discuss with us the issues surrounding Arakan. We even went to Japan this summer and he was made aware of our coming. But as usual, he found excuses not to be there.
As I have pointed out repeatedly in my last 27 years of speeches and writings, history can be a Molotov cocktail when misused by people. The fact remains there are people like Aye Chan and Aye Kyaw that are misusing history to foment hatred and ethnic cleansing. ABRI cannot and will not remain silent to their criminal ploys. There is nothing worse than a bigot and a xenophobe to divide a nation of races, religions, languages, etc. And ABRI and I will continue to fight them intellectually, albeit in a dignified way within the civility, until I am dead or they relent and come to senses, and amend their ways. Burma does not need charlatans that foment hatred, but only honest forward-looking intellectuals that have studied history well enough to guide people to what is right so that they do not repeat mistakes of the yesterdays.