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Obama, Suu Kyi Meet As Myanmar Hero Shifts Role

YANGON, Nov 14: When President Barack Obama meets with Myanmar‘s opposition icon Aung San Suu Kyi on Friday, he will encounter a figure in the midst of an evolution he finds familiar: the shift from history-making trailblazer to establishment politician. Four years after being released from house... 

Free Media In Burma Still A Mixed Bag

IMPHAL, Apr 21: Re-calling that freedom of expression or the existence of a free and independent media went up in smoke, after the military seized power and imposed Martial Law in Myanmar in 1962, the State has gagged freedom of speech and the existence of a free and fair media. Delivering a talk on... 

Drugs And Cultural Survival In The Golden Triangle

Nations, countries, are artificial, boundaries more wishful thinking on the part of moneyed power-mongers than dividing, restricting realities; one must learn of important regional neighbors to understand any specific place. China without knowledge of Mongolia or Russia would be a confusing picture which... 

Burma Conflicts And Second Panglong Conference

Aung San, center, with ethnic delegates to the Panglong Conference in 1947 On January 4, 2011, Burma will celebrate its 63rd independence day. It was on this day in 1948, the Union of Burma was granted independence by the British. Over six decades have passed since independence, but the crux of the conflicts... 

Myanmar Elections 2010- III: ASEAN’S Ambivalence

In the ASEAN discourse, an amalgamated security community is least likely to occur when most of its member states are facing internal political difficulties. The non-interference in one another’s internal affairs policy of ASEAN has undermined any past effort to deal with internal political difficulties.... 

Myanmar Elections 2010- II: Profile Of Major Political Parties

Following on from the 2003 announcement of the ‘Seven-step Roadmap to Democracy,’ Myanmar will hold its first elections in two decades on 7 November 2010. Elections will be held to the Pyidaungsu Hluttaw (Union Assembly) made up of the Pyithu Hluttaw (People’s Assembly/lower house)... 

Why India Shifts Its Policy On Burma

The international community keeps eyeing the political turmoil in military-ruled Burma. Understandably, neighbors better understand. Let us analyze why India seemingly has a lukewarm interest in the Burmese democratic movement? It was the 1988 uprising which brought India significantly into the Burmese... 

End This Extremism

The Indian policy has swung from one extreme to another ‘” from supporting the pro-democracy forces led by Suu Kyi to the other extreme, alarmed by the Chinese inroads into Myanmar, of total support to the military Junta In her speeches, statements and interviews since her release from house... 

Suu Kyi’s Release: As The Dust Begins To Settle

The release of Nobel laureate and the symbol of Myanmar‘s pro-democracy movement, Aung San Suu Kyi on 13 November 2010 saw celebrations not only among pro-democracy groups in Myanmar, but also supporters worldwide. This sudden benevolence on the part of the military junta-backed government... 

Suu Kyi Strikes Tough Posture Against Junta

WASHINGTON, Nov 19: Myanmar‘s just-freed pro-democracy icon Aung San Suu Kyi says she will not compromise with the junta on her demand for the release of all political prisoners, even as she hopes the resource-rich nation can emulate China’s growth sans human rights violations there. Suu... 

Big Challenges Ahead For Suu Kyi

As a political scientist and someone who closely follows the Myanmar (Burma) political developments, I had little doubt about the certainty of the release of Aung San Suu Kyi on November 13 when her term of house arrest expired. Given the nature of the military junta, it was not surprising for many to... 

Myanmar Elections 2010- I: It’s All About Exclusion

The November 2010 elections in Myanmar do not promise to be fair and inclusive nor do they come with the agenda of complete restoration of democracy in the country. But, one thing these elections promise to be is a step towards a transformation which comes with opportunities for some important political... 

Junta Brutality Still Haunts Many Myanmar Dissidents

IMPHAL, Nov 16: Inspite of their leader Daw Aung San Suu Kyi recently freed from house arrest by the military junta there is still palpable fear among dissident Myanmarese who are scattered in different parts of India. Memories of the brutal crackdown against pro-democracy activists still livid and the...