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Aung San Suu Kyi – Shameful Spectator Sport – Update

May 20, 2009
Anti-Burma government demonstrators gather for a protest outside the embassy in Bangkok, Thailand, Tuesday, May 19, 2009. (AP / Sakchai Lalit)

Anti-Burma government demonstrators gather for a protest outside the embassy in Bangkok, Thailand, Tuesday, May 19, 2009. (AP / Sakchai Lalit)

The world is clamoring for the freedom of Aung San Suu Kyi as she faces a mockery of a trial in Rangoon’s infamous Insein Prison. But Snr-Gen Than Shwe, the man at the helm of the Burmese junta, remains unmoved. And so it seems increasingly certain that Suu Kyi will be spending the next three to five years behind bars—world opinion be damned.

FACTBOX: Key facts on Myanmar’s Aung San Suu Kyi

ASEAN says Suu Kyi trial a “grave concern”

Myanmar looms over Europe-Asia meeting

South Africa concerned over Suu Kyi’s arrest, urges her release

NYT  Editorial:  Myanmar’s Cowardly Generals

Pro-Democracy Leader Goes on Trial in Myanmar

Six days to Free Aung San Suu Kyi

The hypocrisy of ‘being concerned’

Excerpt from commentary: I am concerned because I don’t think the plethora of “concern” that is being echoed around the world will achieve anything meaningful for the lady in concern.

I am also concerned about the usually vocal members of the foreign press corps. Has one standard dropped and another popped up without us noticing? Their silence on the matter has been deafening.

This is a democratically elected leader of a severely oppressed country whose people have long suffered under the heavy boots of the military junta. A leader who was not only robbed of her election victory but of her basic human rights for decades, who is now facing a real threat of being tried unfairly and put away in jail for five more years. Where is the outcry from the foreign media? Where are the articles and high-minded opinion pieces condemning the undemocratic elements? Where are the lectures and derision?

The truth is that democratically elected Aung San Suu Kyi should never have been placed under house arrest and no country should be “working” with the military junta that took power by force, save to make them relinquish their grip. It is quite puzzling how the world press is ready to heap scorn and pressure on a half-baked democracy like Thailand’s and refrain from applying the same kind of heat to a fully-fledged dictatorship like Burma’s. Maybe they think it is an exercise in futility because the Burmese generals won’t care. But that would then be an act of hypocrisy.

And the Burmese people can’t afford any more hypocrisy from a world that preaches democracy and human rights protection. The country and people have been made to put up with too much for too long. The Lady has been fighting a lonely battle for nearly two decades. She is 63 years old now. She won’t be there as the best, brightest and most inspiring symbol of democracy in this PD*28662322wretched country forever. Her unjust and unjustified trial which will probably end in her renewed incarceration is the best chance for the democracy-loving international community to act on what they preach. China, in particular, can use the occasion to redeem itself from the bloody Tiananmen crackdown.

Free Aung San Suu Kyi!

Nobel Laureate Aung San Suu Kyi is seriously ill, locked up by the brutal Burmese regime on new trumped up charges.

This cruel maneuver comes days before her 13 years of detention expires and will keep her jailed until after the 2010 elections. The only ‘crime’ she committed was to peacefully call for democracy.

Burma’s brave democracy activists are calling on UN Secretary General Ban Ki Moon to secure all 2,100 political prisoners release — he can make this a condition of any renewed international engagement. We have just six days to get Ban Ki Moon’s attention — the petition will be presented on May 26th. Sign the petition below and forward the email. [CLICK HERE]

aung-san-suu-kyiSuu Kyi’s trial may end sooner than expected

  • Myanmar opposition leader Aung San Suu Kyi on trial with American John Yettaw
  • Yettaw is charged with violating the conditions of Suu Kyi’s house arrest
  • Suu Kyi’s supporters say charges are an excuse to extend her house arrest
  • 9 Nobel peace prize recipients call on U.N. chief to take the issue to Security Council

The world has shamefully watched the injustice perpetrated upon an icon of Democracy for over 13 years.  The world has been criminally complacent over the hijacking of a whole country that elected a democratic government in 1990. WTF!  Where are all those noisy democratic advocates?  Where is America, the Grand Democracy Evangelist?!  Burma is a police state run by the equivalent of what GWB would call an “evil dictatorship”.  The world watched Burma/Myanmar totally screw up one of the biggest natural disasters in recent history.  What did the world do?  It moaned and groaned and complained.  A smattering of tiny sabre rattling took place, then faded out.  The world has demonstrated that it just does NOT care.  The middle east crusade is the game of the day. The promise of a democratic society was totally ignored and tossed in favor of more profitable engagements … like oil.  Who really profits from Myanmar’s corrupt dictatorship …. China?

Aung San Suu Kyi: Myanmar’s democracy face

  • Aung San Suu Kyi arrested and charged with government subversion
  • The charges come after American John Yettaw allegedly tried to reach her house
  • Aung San Suu Kyi has been under house arrest for 13 of the past 19 years
  • Daughter of Myanmar’s first PM, she founded democracy movement in 1988

World Agenda: sad truth is nothing much has helped in Burma

Burma on Trial:  It is not Aung San Suu Kyi who is in the dock, but the junta

The neighbours have at last spoken out. The Association of South-East Asian Nations yesterday expressed “grave concern” at Burma’s treatment of Aung San Suu Kyi and warned the junta that the “honour and credibility” of the Burmese Government were at stake. Such criticism of a fellow Asean member is rare from a body notoriously mealy-mouthed and happy to turn a blind eye to the frequent human rights violations committed by most of its members. The suspicion must be that Asean was tired of being lectured by the West and angry that the trial of Ms Suu Kyi has again underlined Burma’s total indifference to the opinion or goodwill of its partners and allies.

The words may be welcome, but they express only a fraction of the outrage felt around the world at the cynicism, mendacity and brutality of the generals determined to silence the potent voice of democracy until well after the sham elections due next year to confirm their hold on power. Governments, statesmen, writers, public figures and ordinary people have been moved by the courage and tenacity of the isolated, vulnerable woman who has stood up to years of bullying intimidation without wavering or compromise.

Why do we see the best coverage for the plight of this shameful treatment of a Democratic Icon in editorials around the world, instead of headlins on front pages?  Where is the “Righteous Indignation”  that prompts ACTION?  This is a huge blemish on the pockmarked face of today’s world.  The few brave journalists who struggle to report accurate news are faced with a terrified population that knows they can be jailed, or worse, for speaking out.  The world’s media needs to be spanked for not making this a headline issue for countries to act upon!  Has China got the cat’s tongue? Is news media allowed to breach it’s ethics again?  For the United States, the hypocracy is glaring … eager to prop up sleazy dictators to do its bidding but slow to respond to a Democratic Leader in distress! ?

The people of Burma welcome strong words from world leaders and other prominent figures, including Suu Kyi’s fellow Nobel Peace Prize laureates. But what they really want to see is action—action that will set the stage for real change, and not merely perpetuate the status quo. Action that can only come from the United Nations.   On Friday, the UN Security Council finally issued a statement expressing “concern” about the political impact of recent developments relating to Suu Kyi. The statement stressed the “importance of the release of all political prisoners” and the “need for the Government of Myanmar to create the necessary conditions for a genuine dialogue” with the democratic opposition.

U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton assailed the military junta during a Senate budget hearing, charging it was “outrageous that they are trying her, and that they continue to hold her because of her political popularity. “

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