Burma or Myanmar ? – a rose by any other name..

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During President Thein Sein historic visit to the White House on 20th May 2013 we get a bit of doublespeak from the White House Press Secretary:

“At a White House press briefing during the Burmese president’s visit to the White House, White House press secretary Jay Carney referred to the country as Myanmar as “a diplomatic courtesy.”

“The United States government, over time, has begun to allow limited use of the name Myanmar as a diplomatic courtesy,” Carney said.

Officially, the country is recognized as the Republic of the Union of Burma, and it is still the official policy of the White House that “Burma is the name of the country,” according to Carney.”

While President Obama in welcoming President Thein Sein said “We very much appreciate your efforts and leadership in leading Myanmar in a new direction,” President Obama told President Sein. “We want you to know that the United States will make every effort to assist you on what I know is a long, and sometimes difficult, but ultimately correct path to follow.”

Are we sensing a shift in White House’s attitude? Or is this the usual White House doublespeak to keep everyone happy? Like they say if you cannot illuminate then obfuscate. What do you think?

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