Tag Archives: Burma

Aung San Suu Kyi Opposes Participation In Election

A group of military thugs run the nation of Burma–or Myanmar, which is their term–and they have decided to hold an election this spring to show the world they do have the ability to hold elections. The last election twenty years ago resulted in defeat of military goons by the National League For Democracy which led to a ban on the party and house arrest for its leader, Nobel Prize winner, Aung San Suu Kyi. The NDL confronted the issue of whether or not to participate in a fixed election or to refuse any participation. Aung Kyi spoke out against being part of the charade since it was an “unjust” election which would only result in victory for army leaders.

Could one argue for actually participating in an election you knew was fixed? If for no other reason, it would allow the appearance of expressing views, holding meetings and allowing the world to witness an election in which victors obtained 99% of the vote. Whatever number is used by the goons as evidence of a victory will elicit laughter from the world. By being part of a charade, the NDL demonstrates it IS a charade.

Burma Thugs–Off With Her Presence!

The military thugs who run Burma as their private kingdom of fear are trying something new this year– an election! Naturally, if one is going to allow people to vote the least you can do is ensure they vote for the correct candidate. After all, who wants an election in which the wrong candidates win? The National League for Democracy(NLD) whose leader, Aung San Suu Kyi has been under house arrest for daring to speak her mind in a nation which claims it allows freedom of speech–of course, that freedom is restricted to those who agree with the government, has been informed they can participate in the upcoming election if they expel their leader. After all, she IS a person who has been convicted of the crime of free speech.

The Nobel Prize winner has spent 14 of the last 20 years under house arrest and her recent conviction was simply a ploy to keep her away from voters during the election. Oh, in the last time there was a free election the NLD won the overwhelming majority of votes. This correspondent can guarantee he knows the outcome of this year’s election– at least 95% of votes cast will be for government candidates. Come to think about it, why bother with an election, just count the votes that you already have cast?

Obama Shares Meeting With Burma Thug Leader

President Obama is attending the ASEAN meeting and will use the opportunity to stress the need for Asian cooperation and emphasize the United States commitment to being a major player on the economic scene. During the meeting he will be in the same room with Burma military leaders who rule their nation with an iron fist. There are signs Obama seeks to move away from the Bush strategy of having no relations with a dictatorship to one in which the United States might gently move Myanmar’s leaders into a more democratic stance. A few days ago, a Burmese diplomat indicated his nation might be willing to allow opposition members to participate in the upcoming elections.

It is easy to condemn dictators, it is difficult to find ways of gently moving them in a direction of a more open society. Obama’s decision to be pro-active makes more sense than pretending it is all or nothing in dealing with a dictator.

Will Aung San Suu Kyi Get Freedom?

The mysterious world of politics in Myanmar makes for difficulty in ascertaining what exactly is happening in a nation that is completely controlled by a gang of generals who pay scant attention to anything outside their realm of power. Min Lwin, a director-general in the foreign ministry, shocked the media by announcing, “there is a plan to release her now… so she can organize her party” for the upcoming elections in 2010. Pro-democracy activists caution about reading too much into the statement since over the years they have been misled on more than a dozen occasions. Is the statement a response to a recent visit by an American diplomat? Is the statement another strategy of confusing the opposition? Frnakly, no one knows.

We can only hope that some leaders of Myanmar are ready to enter into the world of global life and politics.. Better to have hope than none at all.

Need To Change Burma Policy?

Senator Jim Webb completed his trip to Burma to secure the release of an obviously mentally ill man named John Yettaw who swam across a lake in order to enter the home of imprisoned Burmese leader Aung Sun Suu Kyi. Although Mr. Yettaw flew away to freedom in America, Ms. Suu Kyi remains under house arrest. Senator Webb had an opportunity to speak with Burmese leader, Senior General Than Shwe. Months ago, President Obama extended a ban on US investment in Burma as part of American strategy of maintaining an embargo on any relations with the thugs who currently rule Myanmar.

Derek Tonkin, who chairs the Myanmar Network, spoke with Webb about his views on Burma. “His view is that sanctions have been harmful. He believes the policy has had the opposite outcome than was intended. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton insists improved relations will only occur if Burmese leaders release dissidents.

I have supported the sanction policy, but Jim Webb deserves to have his ideas explored. There is no evidence sanctions have worked so wha tis wrong with examining new approaches to the Burmese government?

French Firm Colludes In Death Of Burmese

Burma is a nation ruled by military thugs who control enormous riches which they dangle before Chinese, Indian and European eyes in order to secure their cooperation in allowing its military to tyrannize citizens. The French energy giant Total is being accused of colluding with the Burmese government to force thousands of villagers to toil on repairing roads, carrying wood and acting as porters in order to further construction of a new pipeline. Total insists that forced labor is never used in Burmese activities, but this claim is not supported by the International Labor Organization.

A former soldier who was stationed in the area of construction said: “During the portering the soldiers treat porters not so good. I do not want to mention about these bad things so much since I myself I have done it to these people as well.” In 2005, Total paid $6.12 million in an out of court settlement after a group of villagers near the Yadana pipeline alleged the company was involved in human rights abuses.

What price salvation if the choice is billions?

Burmese Court Again Says Suu Kyi Is Guilty

It comes as no surprise that a court in Burma guilty of sheltering an uninvited American who swam across a lake and entered her home in a desperate effort to attain some fame. However, due to the kindness of the nation’s supreme leader, Senior General Than Shwe, the sentence of three years of hard labor has been reduced to 18 months of house arrest. Her lawyer noted that Daw Aung San Suu Kyi believes the sentence is totally unfair. A new barbed wire fence has been erected at the lakeside entrance to her home. John Yettaw, who made the crazy swim was sentenced to seven years of hard labor when he, most probably, should be sent to a psychiatric institution.

World leaders denounced the sentence, there will be pious editorials in newspapers and within a few weeks, she will be in her house while the world goes along with its business. Frankly, as long as China and India continue using the natural resources of Burma, nothing will prevent the thugs who run the country from doing as they desire.

UN Chief Praises Burma Thugs Who Run Nation!!

UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon unleashed a storm of anger from critics who wanted him to take a strong stand while in Burma in support of democracy and freedom for imprisoned leader Aung San Suu Kyi. On arrival in Burma, the UN leader told head thug of the military junta which brutally rules the nation, ‘I appreciate your commitment to moving your country forward.” Huh! Forward where? Opposition leaders are in jail where many are tortured, the people of Burma suffer from both lack of food and lack of freedom. British Prime Minister Gordon Brown stated bluntly what must be done by the United Nations in regard to Burma. “Only agreement to release all political prisoners (and) start a genuine dialogue with the opposition and ethnic groups will give any credibility to the elections in 2010.”

The reality of this movement “forward” was refusal by the Junta to allow Ban to meet with Suu Kyi in prison and silence as regards freeing any political prisoners. The world waits expectantly for the UN Secretary General to tell us about the “forward” movement in Burma.

Myanmar Farce Brings Tears, Not Laughter!

Franz Kafka up in heaven must be smiling as he gazes at what is termed a “trial” in the nation of Myanmar. Aung San Suu Kyi, leader of the democratic movement in Burma, is on trial for breaching her house arrest because a mentally disturbed man swam across a lake, entered her house, and complained he was exhausted. In most normal societies in the world, compassion shown by Ms. Kyi would be rewarded, but in the paranoia land of Myanmar, its military leaders see plots and conspiracies under every bed in the nation. John Yettaw, the American claims to have seen a dream in which he rushed to the home of Ms. Kyi to save her life. He told the tribunal, “I can’t walk on the water, so I swam.” This man entered the home of Ms. Kyi and she did her best to aid him since it was apparent he was emotionally unstable.

Burma’s military junta responded to world condemnation of the trial by insisting Yettaw was a “secret agent of her boyfriend” and engaged in some nefarious plot. It is impossible to conduct a rational discussion with the mentally ill rulers of Burma so Ms. Kyi undoubtedly will face additional time under house arrest.

Go to bed, Mr. Kafka, your literature has become reality.

Myanmar’s Walk On Wild Side Of Lake

Several days ago, a slightly confused American from the show-me state of Missouri decided to show himself to Burma’s captive leader, Aung Suu Kyi by swimming across a lake that borders her home and presenting himself at her door. Like any normal person in the prison known as Myanmr, she initially asked the stranger to depart, but he claimed to be exhausted and asked permission to rest. But, this is the state of Myanmar which is governed by a clique of paranoid military thugs who spend their lives worrying about who is out to overthrow their regime. After all, one can’t be too careful knowing that a stranger was able to swim across a lake and get to the house of a dissident. Was the swim merely the first step in an amphibious attack on the government?

Ms. Aung Suu Kyi is now under arrest and charged with the crime of aiding strangers who are engaged in some unknown, but definitely dangerous endeavor to create problems. If convicted she might receive a five year sentence. Who knows what evil lurks in the minds of Burma’s sick generals– certainly, they know enough to be fearful of midnight swimmers.