Freedom(ish)!

20 Nov

November 13, 2010, Rangoon, Burma (Myanmar):

Aung San Suu Kyi, figurehead of the National League for Democracy (NLD), the leading opposition to Myanmar’s military dictocracy, was released from house arrest after 7 + years (and 15 of the last 20 years).

Now, little more than a week after the first Burmese election since the 1990 election that Suu Kyi won in a landslide, she is thrown back into the political limelight with the impossible task of uniting a greatly divided opposition, part of which has been actively engaged in a civil war with the government for about 50 years, while maintaining her own freedom.

A short article in the New York Times provides a brief sketch of some of the challenges she faces.

Additionally there is a wonderful, albeit longer, op-ed in the Guardian about Aung San Suu Kyi as a stand-out among opposition leaders/martyrs….pretty cool stuff!

It’ll be interesting to see how this all works out in the next few months as she reclaims the spotlight and challenges the government…

Side Note:

Aung San Suu Kyi is one of over 2,200 political prisoners in Burma. The Assistance Association for Political Prisoners (in Burma) is a wonderful organization which I was able to visit here in Thailand that is dedicated to the cause of freeing and informing the world about these individuals and the government’s cruel policies on political freedoms. The following is from their press release on the impact of Suu Kyi’s release:

“Unlike Nelson Mandela’s release from prison, the door to freedom will not be opened wide with Daw Aung San Suu Kyi’s release, indeed, it will not even be opened a crack.”

Something to think about.

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