2021 has been a particularly bad year in Burma (a.k.a. Myanmar, but that’s another story). After decades of military dictatorship, the country finally started to see some freedom and representative government during the last decade. That upswing came to an abrupt end when the military claimed election fraud and took control of the government, establishing yet another military junta.
Protests started almost immediately and are still ongoing, but protests are often met with military violence and murder.
This left Burma’s people with a tragic choice: accept more violent military totalitarianism or fight back against and risk their lives. While there have certainly been setbacks, and many rebel fighters have been killed, they’ve had some limited successes, including the attempted defection of high-level junta officials.
But, with every success, the junta gets more brutal, killing unarmed civilians with military vehicles and even burning them alive to discourage people from fighting.
11 unarmed villagers from Dontaw village in Salingyi,Sagaing Division were tied up in their back and burned alive to death in on Dec 7 at around 8 am, @Khithitofficial reported.#WhatsHappeningInMyanmar pic.twitter.com/FLltWgKOnS
— Thang Deih Tuang (@ThangDeihTuang) December 7, 2021
In past decades, the military junta stayed in power because people generally couldn’t fight back. With inferior homemade weapons and limited ammunition, plus what little guns and ammo that could be smuggled in, past generations could only conduct limited raids on the government and were unable make much of a difference.
But this is 2021 and technology has come a long way in the last ten years. Now, rebel fighters have much better options, including the FGC-9, a 9mm semi-automatic blowback carbine made with a mix of 3D-printed and simple metal parts.
#Myanmar (#Burma) 🇲🇲: Another noteable photo of a People's Defence Forces (#PDF) fighter with a 3D-printed 9mm FGC-9 PCC.
Apparently this is one of the most noteable weapons used by the fighters.#WhatsHappeningInMyanmar#Dec10Coup. https://t.co/ta0XtNC18l pic.twitter.com/VEMlU8OEav
— War Noir ☃️ (@war_noir) December 10, 2021
For those unfamiliar, the FGC-9 (FGC stands for Fuck Gun Control) was invented by a man in Germany who went by the name JStark1809, with the help of people he befriended online. Their goal was to make a gun that anyone could build at home without any regulated components or even much skill.
They came up with ways to build everything from a fire control group to a rifled barrel, and all with parts that wouldn’t raise suspicions if you were to order them on the internet or even buy them locally.
Sadly, JStark, whose real name was Jacob, was found by German intelligence and law enforcement and his home was raided by German law enforcement. He was found dead two days later under mysterious circumstances.
While photographs from the rebellion are pretty rare, it’s well known that the FGC-9 is in common use among Burma’s resistance fighters, so these photos aren’t just anecdotal.
No several have been recovered over there. This is the first photo of a militant with one though.
— Jake Hanrahan (@Jake_Hanrahan) December 9, 2021
The Lesson of the FGC-9 in Burma
The most important thing we can take from this is that gun control is no longer a useful strategy for tyrants who want to remain in power. With a few files downloaded from the internet and only a few hundred dollars worth of tools and materials, just about anyone can build their own FGC-9 at home.
Because the most stressed components in the FGC-9 are made with metal parts, the gun can last for thousands of rounds. There are even guides online to make your own 9mm ammunition for it using unregulated components.
That people in one of the poorest countries on the planet can and do build them at home shows that gun control is effectively dead in 2021. Tyrants the world over will now have to think twice. They can’t stop the signal.
Another anti-gun argument that has flatlined is what I like to call “Shrodinger’s rifle.” Weapons like the AR-15 are simultaneously fearsome weapons of war that we must remove from the streets to protect the children, but are also wholly ineffective against military weapons like tanks and warplanes. Like Shrodinger’s cat, the forces of civilian disarmament claim semi-automatic weapons are two things at once.
Seeing rebel fighters successfully using these 9mm carbines against a military with tanks and warplanes shows that the latter part of the “Shrodinger’s rifle” argument is verifiably false. It also shows that a semi-automatic carbine is an effective way to protect innocent people from murderous tyrants.