• Thursday, September 27, 2007

    A dark day for Burma....

    From the BBC:

    Witnesses described monks with blood on their shaved heads as police charged at the Shwedagon pagoda in Rangoon.

    [photo courtesy of Reuters]

    Reports have indicated that five monks and a woman have allegedly been killed during the bloody crackdown by the military junta in Burma. Brave action from armed soldiers against peaceful protesters in robes.

    I must admit this whole thing has really got under my skin. I really fell for Burma the few times I visited and my limited experience of the Burmese was 100% positive: genuinely warm and welcoming people despite the terrible conditions most there live under. Whilst the Burmese are kept impoverished and as virtual slaves within their own country China and Thailand exploit the situation by making off with it's resources on the cheap, trade that helps prop up the evil regime and prolong the hell. In the case of Thailand this unfortunate situation also means they have a regular supply of extremely cheap labour that can be abused without complaint.

    With the Olympics approaching in Beijing the general feeling has been that the Chinese might be able to put pressure on their allies, the Burmese military. However, the Chinese are now saying that it's purely an internal matter and for the BUrmese to sort out. Basically the Chinese think that stability, no matter what the cost, is preferable to any kind of instability.

    Whilst Britain remains the biggest aid donor to Burma it came out today that not a penny of government money has gone to any pro-democracy cause. However, £120,ooo GBP of British taxpayers' money has gone to help save the Burmese bat. I'm all for looking after nature but surely there are more pressing issues in Burma at the moment.


    A dark day for Burma....



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