The military coup that was carried out in Myanmar by Min Aung Hlaing, commander-in-chief of the army, on 31 January has unleashed a movement that the military were clearly not expecting. Their coup took many by surprise. No one in Myanmar was expecting it, and it also does not seem to fit with the needs of the moment. So why did it take place? In this article, we attempt to outline some of the factors that led to this sudden and sharp change in the situation.