Burmese beauty queen throws away her high heels and takes up arms against military regime

Burma’s Former Beauty Pageant Queen Htar Htet Htet Joins Guerrillas Resisting Military Regime May 11, 2021

A Burmese beauty pageant queen has thrown away her high heels and Miss Pageant ribbon to carry an assault rifle and fight alongside armed guerrillas in the jungle against the military regime.

Burma’s former beauty pageant queen Htar Htet Htet has been living in the guerrilla-controlled jungle for the past 42 days, practicing with weapons, AFP reported from Yangon on May 12.

Photos posted on her Facebook account yesterday, Tuesday, showed the former beauty queen ditching her high heels and Miss Pageant-wearing ribbons for a black T-shirt and military uniform with a Kalashnikov-47 automatic rifle slung over her shoulder.

She wrote: “Whether you’re holding a gun, holding a pen (……) or donating to the democracy movement, everyone must do their part to make the revolution a success. The time has come, she said, to fight back against the bloody repression of the junta.” She said she was ready to give up everything (……) , including her life, and said, “I don’t do politics, my goal is just to overthrow this evil dictatorship.”

For security reasons, she did not reveal which faction she was fighting for. We will only go home when we win,” she said.

More than 780 civilians, including women and children, have been killed by security forces since the Feb. 1 military coup that toppled Aung San Suu Kyi’s democratically elected government, according to a local non-governmental organization.

Burmese people who have tasted democratic freedom refuse to go back to the past, and popular protests have continued, with thousands of strikers crippling the overall economic sector. Fighting between multiple ethnic groups angered by the bloodshed and the Tatmadaw is also intensifying. Thousands of people opposed to the junta have joined rebel groups established in the country’s northern and eastern border regions to escape the military brutality they have suffered in the city.

Heta Ht, a 31-year-old woman who is a track and field athlete, represented Myanmar in the annual international beauty pageant held in Thailand in 2013.

Her Facebook page has changed day by day since the restoration of the military regime: pictures of her in a swimsuit have been replaced with accounts of the day’s events: massive anti-regime protests, general strikes that have shaken the country, atrocities by security forces, tragic killings of civilians, candlelight in memory of victims, Easter eggs decorated with anti-regime slogans, flowers calling on the international community to help the Burmese people fight the military regime. She is active in the civil disobedience campaign on Facebook, the country’s main communication tool.

Earlier this year, in March, Heta Ht feared her arrest as Tatmadaw security forces hunted down dozens of celebrities accused of spreading information that could provoke a mutiny. A few weeks later, she joined the guerrillas. Messages of encouragement poured in on social networks: “My dear esteemed sister” and “May strength be with you in the forests and mountains.”