Nepal: Grumbling In The Ranks


October 22, 2007: The Maoists now want to return their ministers to the government, but the prime minister has refused to let them. All this political maneuvering is in support of Maoist attempts to increase their popularity, and their chances of success in elections that will change the constitution, and install a new government. The Maoists are split between those who believe a communist government can be elected (after which it would, as past communists have done, outlaw future elections), and those who believe control of the government must be seized by force. Discipline in the Maoist movement is breaking down, which is to be expected after years of fighting. But the decision to try and take over via elections caused more severe splits within the Maoist movement than the Maoist leadership expected. Meanwhile, the king remains popular, if only for his importance in the religious life of many Nepalese, and the democratic parties sill have the support of the majority of Nepalese. For the Maoists, their problem is that they attract the support of only a minority of Nepalese, and a shrinking minority at that.

October 18, 2007: Some groups of former Maoists have become criminal gangs, using their power and organizing skills to pursue various lucrative scams.

October 17, 2007: In the capital, soldiers defused two bombs found abandoned near the airport.

October 16, 2007: The UN has demanded that the Maoists stop their campaign of extortion and terrorism. These Maoist activities are meant to weaken groups that support the king and the democratic parties, and make it easier for the Maoists to recruit new members, and take control of more rural villages and towns.

October 13, 2007: Ethnic separatist groups in the south, noting how the Maoists do business, have also been extorting money and goods from businesses and aid groups. This has become too much for many of the foreign NGOs supplying food and other aid, and these groups have shut down or withdrawn from the area. This is seen as the only way to make the rebel groups become more reasonable in their demands.


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