There are so many heartbreaking things about what is going in Burma, but for a foreigner one of the hardest to bear is the optimism. There are few foreign journalists here, but people treat them as saviours, encouraging them to get the story and the pictures out, with a touching faith that it will make a difference. “Tell them to send foreign troops, UN troops,” said a young monk at the Mwe Kya Kan pagoda. “Please, fly them to our country to save our lives.” http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/news/world/asia/article2545351.ece
I have experienced the tragic optimism of the Burmese. More than once while in Burma (Myanmar) I have been approached with the message: “Please tell the world what is happening to us!”. Like the reporter in the story above, the sadness is “why?”. The news has gone out for decades, but there is no answer coming. We simply do not know how to respond to oppression within a sovereign nation. The stories of government directed, rape, murder, torture, and such have filtered out of Burma. There was even a Hollywood movie called “Beyond Rangoon” about the ’88 massacre. Yet, what is happening now seems like new news to so many.
To my Burmese friends: the world knows.
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