The military dictatorship that took over, ran the country with an iron fist and tolerated no dissent, even from the Budhist monks who regularly protested by setting themselves on fire. Sanctions were imposed and the country became more and more isolated and the people's life became more and more bleak. A constitution drafted by the army in 2008, was rejected by Suu Kyi and an election in 2010 was boycotted and was won by the army-backed party led by Thein Sein.
Suu Kyi, 66 years old, has spent over 15 years under house arrest and continued to be the focal point of protest. She is the daughter of Gen. Aung San who helped lead "Burma" to independence from British rule in the late 40's. She won the Nobel Peace Prize in 1991, after which she became established in the West as the voice of the people.
In Aug. 2011, she had a meeting with Thien Sein and a compromise was reached, whereby 43 by-elections will be held and her party will be allowed to freely participate. Those elections have been held and this nation of 64 million awaits the result with great expectations.
The future seem bright. More freedom for the people and with the lifting of sanctions, a better life beckons, given Myanmar's richness of natural resources, including natural gas and gold. Foreign companies such as General Electric are poised to invest in what is one of Asia's last untapped markets. Also Maynmar, situated between India and China will become very attractive to the United States and this may spell trouble as there will be a tug of war for influence and thus as the African proverb put it "when elephants fight, it is the grass that suffer". The people of Myanmar deserve to have a better life and hopefully they will be spared being a pawn among super-powers interests.
Meanwhile, Hillary Clinton has managed to pull together a "Friends of Syria" group, led and financed by Saudi Arabia to promise $100 million in "humanitarian aid" to rebels fighting the Assad regime. This "aid" will take the form of salaries for fighters and communivations equipment to help them organize and know the whereabouts of the Syrian military. This is a very dangerous upping of the ante, which may lead to a broader war, regional and sectarian. One thing is certain and that is this will lead to further death and destruction and with Russia and China blocking the way to direct military action a la Libya, chances are that illicit weapons will find their way to the rebels, prolonging the fighting and pulling in neighbors from Lebanon to Iraq to Iran to .......... A conflagration.
Clinton has overreached. She has learnt nothing from her Libya disaster (factional fighting continues between rival militia, no one is in control), and Tuaregs who fought for Gadhafi are operating in Mali where they have captured various towns including Timbutku and are demanding a country of their own in the north. Her new adventure in Syria promises much wo