Sunday, January 15, 2012

Signs of Movement From Burmese Dictators

It's nice to see some signs of progress toward some limited freedom in Burma.  John McCain visited Burma  in June of 2011 just after the ruling Junta installed a semi-civilian government.  In recent news, about 750 political prisoners were released and Secretary of State Hillary Clinton visited government officials and Suu Kyi .  Finally, I see where the government has declared a cease-fire in their 60 year old civil war against the Karen people.  

Several articles of interest regarding the tentative Burma political reforms 

Here are a couple of articles about Burma, from the Ottawa Citizen; about why the recent reforms reflect weakness in the regime.   In a thoughtful article from The Diplomat Don't Forget the Children In Burma, reminds the world and surrounding regional countries to ease restrictions on the immigration and education of displaced children from Burma.  Burma is going to need huge numbers of new teachers if reform continues.  Maybe I'll go!

The Karen Educational Center in Bangkok

Any progress in lessening pressure on the Karen people (an ethnic minority in Burma persecuted  by the Junta)  are of particular interest to a few of us connected with these people--the ones who have managed to flee from Burma to Thailand.

My friends Tommy and Al are teaching Karen children in Bangkok in a small school funded only by a few of us, our friends and friends of friends.  Please visit their webpage Karen Educational Center and help them/us to continue to instruct these great young adults!  The curriculum consists of several levels of English, Thai language and IT skills.  There's a link to donate to the effort on the webpage.  A little goes a long way and the money is needed and appreciated.   All of us who have met these kids and young adults are very touched and impressed by these great young people.   It would fantastic to see Burma become a respected member of the international community and extend freedom to all of their people.

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