Thursday, September 27, 2007

The Burma Protests

YouTube Link

Video above taken on September 24, 2007, showing both monks and ordinary civilians protesting the military government in Burma. Part two here.

More than 100,000 people had taken to the streets to rally against the evil junta. Latest news is that the Burmese army began raiding a monastery and had arrested at least 100 Buddhist monks on Thursday. At least four people have died after a military crackdown on the protests.

People inside Burma have been e-mailing the BBC News website and talking to the BBC Burmese Service about the growing unrest:
There are a lot of people in the emergency ward in the hospital and people are dying there. One witness told me that there were three monks that were brought in by a taxi driver and one of the monks died at the table - the other two are in a critical condition. A lot of other people are severely injured. - Thian, Rangoon

At about 10 o'clock the riot police blocked the road, but the monks pushed through the blockade and climbed the Shwedagon pagoda from the eastern side. After eating there, they came down from the pagoda about noon, in a line. At that point they were rounded up and charged with batons by the police. The monks responded merely by reciting prayers. People fled from the scene and it was mainly women who were targeted and beaten. The mob was dispersed and some people were arrested. Near the eastern stairway, tear gas was used to disperse the crowd. The monks - together with monks from Thingangyun - are said to march towards downtown. About thirty monks were badly hurt and hospitalised. - Anonymous eyewitness, Rangoon

I just talked to my sister, who lives in Rangoon. She knows someone at the local hospital in Rangoon. They have been treating three monks, who were taken to the hospital by responsible taxi drivers. The monks had been beaten up with the back of rifles. One monk had a deep wound exposing his brain, and he has already died. The other two are being treated under intensive care. Many more people died today, but there is no information about it. Many taxi drivers who are at the site of the violence take injured monks to nearest hospitals. The junta are using dirty tactics - they don't fire guns, but beat people with the back of their rifles. The monks defiantly did not fight back, endured the pain and died. - Sanda, Stocksund, Swede
I applaud the Burmese people and the monks for the courage to stand up against their oppressive military rulers. This is a country that has been run by the military since 1968 and I don't see the junta quiting its power anytime soon. The country's rightful leader, Nobel Prize Winner Aung San Suu Kyi, has been kept in detention by the military rulers after she and her party won a democratic elections in 1990. This military regime is one of the world's most repressive and abusive that rules by decree, controls the judiciary, suppresses nearly all basic rights, and commits human rights abuses with impunity.

Can the monks and their fellow Burmese people do anything more to return democracy to their country? I don't think so. The military is too strong in the country and even if there are more mass protests, they will be cracked down pretty swiftly. And there are still many people in Burma who fear the military.

Sanctions against the junta are welcomed but they will only help a little. The likes of China and India who have strong links to Burma have to do more to pressure the junta to return democracy to the country but I foresee that these two countries will stick to their non interference policy. What the world needs to do is to take really drastic measures. For example, Asean should kick Burma out of the group to send a strong message that we do not tolerate such a regime in our region that brutally persecutes its people. And countries including Singapore should stop investing in Burma. We should not be discussing any economic ties with the military junta as long as they are not willing to relinquish their power. We need to let the rulers know that the world will shut them out if they continue this brutal rule over their country.


Anonymous said...

Yes it's Burma not Myanmar!

Anonymous said...

It's about time. The whole nation should stand up to these tyrants.

Anonymous said...

This is so sad. My heart goes out to all the people there and hope that one day, they will all get to live a peaceful life under a democratic government.

Anonymous said...

News are reporting that no monks are out in the protests today. My guess is that they must have been killed or captured.

Anonymous said...


Anonymous said...

u r spot on iz! i don't think we should have a fellow asean country who isn't a free and democratic country but will the asean leaders have the balls to kick burma out?

Anonymous said...

To the Burmese Junta: The world is watching.

Anonymous said...

fuckin wankers!!!

the army is afraid of a lady.

Anonymous said...

>The likes of China and India who have strong links to Burma have to do more to pressure the junta to return democracy to the country but I foresee that these two countries will stick to their non interference policy.

Russia is also a backer of the junta. Both India and China are mainly supplying arms to the military.

Anonymous said...

Okay, guys, but what can an individual do to help these people? Can we start a 'boycott the China Olympics' e-mail campaign to apply pressure to the Chinese government....can we write our own to urge them to become more courageous in their intervention? What are the e-mail addresses we should be targeting.

What will happen if the priests will not do burial rights for a foot solider or general?

Would that turn or at least nutralise some of the soldiers who fear for their spiritual well-being?

There must be something that individuals can do.

James Chia said...

United Nations is taking its own sweet time to impose stricter sanctions against Burma. So is ASEAN.

Anonymous said...

OUR government is offering help to the junta on our very own soil:

Anonymous said...

go to these links

Anonymous said...

Free Burma!
International Bloggers' Day for Burma on the 4th of October

International bloggers are preparing an action to support the peaceful revolution in Burma. We want to set a sign for freedom and show our sympathy for these people who are fighting their cruel regime without weapons. These Bloggers are planning to refrain from posting to their blogs on October 4 and just put up one Banner then, underlined with the words „Free Burma!“.