Was this a Mandela occasion? I doubt it. The thugs in power are afraid of the consequences, if they give up control. They fear that they will be punished for their crimes against the people, and of course are afraid that they will lose their luxurious life-style. In their dotage, they are paranoid (much like their Chinese counter-part, during Tianamen), and fear the people whom they have kept in servitude and poverty for so many years.
What now for Suu Kyi? They will monitor her and will not hesitate to put her back in detention. They held an "election", where the party that fronted for them claimed an overwhelming victory. They crave legitimacy but that still eludes them. In the real, free and open election in1989, the forces of democracy, under the leadership of Suu Kyi, won a clear victory, but that election was declared null and void and she was detained with many of the leading leaders. (I remember that time well, the Berlin Wall came down, Mandela was freed, Corazon Aquino ended the Marcos dictatorship, but there was also Tianamen and the Burmese Generals and those in Algeria, who also declared a democratic election null and void... On a personal note, I was teaching a course in Comparative Politics at Vanier College, and we had long, energetic and interesting discussions on each of these historic events. On the one hand we cheered the release of Mandela, and on the other we rued the events in Burma and Algeria)
Leaders around the world must do more than offer words. They must make sure that Suu Kyi and their long-suffering people are NOT driven back into the "shadows". Maybe they can offer the "Generals"a deal.....something like the "Truth and Reconcilation", that did so much to make the transition of South Africa, from Apartheid possible