1. abeur

    I think there is a big fuss over what is happening in Burma. OK i admit there is human rights broken but because soldiers hit civilians the world react like its the end of the world – but what about Palestine where civilians are killed.

    That mainstream Media for you….

  2. Zaki

    Burma does not exist except in the British colonial books. The country’s name is Myanmar!

    It’s just a Briths campaign that would reach nowhere, and it’s so obviouse that you are blindly following them! Would the next campaign “Free Palistine”? Noway!!!

  3. Vagabondblogger

    Mahmood, thanks for covering this too.

    abeur: You need to realize there are others in the world who live in tyranny, that quite possibly could be worse than the apartheid in the “Occupied Territories.” These people have been beaten in their temples, communications have been cut off, save for telephone service and inter-country e-mail, and it’s reported that thousands of monks – men who believe in peace and in civil disobedience, have “disappeared” – photos show dead bodies floating in rivers. Their way of living is closer to the heart of any religious belief that I hear espoused daily, whether it be Judaism, Islam, or Christianity – humility, begging for daily food, peace. BTW, the mainstream media was shot (Japanese newsman) at close range. What is coming out of Burma is secreted videos and photos and not much of that exists.

  4. Post

    Ah, Zaki, for those who didn’t get it, is suggesting that we should forget everything else in the world, all the ills that befall it and all the injustices and inequities until the Palestinian problem is corrected.

    Put in another way: only the Palestinian problem exists; hence, we (Arabs? Muslims? All of those in Zaki’s bad books?) should exert our exclusive efforts into that basket.

    Well, Zaki, let me burst your bubble: people actually can multitask and think globally.

    Deal with it.

  5. Ingrid

    Mahmoud, the British Burma Campaign compiled a ‘dirty list’. A list of all companies doing business in Burma. Here’s the link if anyone should feel inclined to (e)mail a letter or two:

    And why was I even surprised that you should’ve heard about this international bloggers day for Burma?! I’m glad that your outlook can go past the Middle East although having glanced at the previous post, Burma is now included in the Middle East? that’s funny…

  6. I

    With reference to the post #2 by Zaki. The BBC recently had the same question asked as to why they, the BBC, used the name Burma instead of Myanmar.
    It was not for pseudo colonialist reasons, but simply that the majority of the people in the world still referred to the country by that name. At least in the UK and America, more people recognised the name Burma as opposed to Myanmar. It’s similar to the fact that people in the city still refer to Mumbai as Bombay, even ten years after the name change.
    Many people in different countries take time to get to grips with name changes after so long. This is not a bolster to any colonial system, just a simple fact.
    As an aside, I would love to visit Burma/Myanmar, but certainly would not even consider it until it is under democratic rule and Aung San Su Kyi is free.


  7. Mavis

    There will always be injustice in the world, but that doesn’t mean we can’t all do something, even if it’s to put a banner on a blog.

    If those of you who think Palestine isn’t getting justice, start a banner program, shout from the highest hill, but don’t yell because some other country is getting crapped on, and you think Palestine is getting shoved to the side. That’s a bit hypocritical.

  8. bint battuta

    Re posts 2+7

    The reasons for referring to it as Burma rather than Myanmar are political rather than ‘pseudo-colonial’ or just because old habits die hard:

    (The BBC explanation the other day was a cop-out, I heard it too.)

    Anyway, as one activist says, “Often you can tell where someone’s sympathies lie if they use Burma or Myanmar. Myanmar is a kind of indicator of countries that are soft on the regime. But really it’s not important. Who cares what people call the country? It’s the human rights abuses that matter.”

  9. mishmish

    I personally can’t help but feel that there are double standards when it comes to ‘The World’, speak ‘The West’ becoming actively involved in another country’s affairs.

    Meaning it is mostly when the economic or political interests of certain countries are at stake – see Iraq.

    If there’s no direct gain, then oftentimes all that happens is retoric – a few speeches, a few sanction, threats and not much more.

    Granted, right now the UN representative has been to Burma, but we all know that the UN really doesn’t have much power.

    I think if anything changes for Burma, it has to come from within, from the people.

    Of course it helps if there is as much outside support as possible, so that the issue doesnt just get brushed under the carpet – but I don’t think any government will do much beyond economic sanctions — and what does that matter if China will most likely supply all that’s needed.

    But, change came about in India and many Eastern Block countries through people power and if one day the majority stood up in Burma, the picture would look entirely different. I wonder if the government could still go up against an entire population.

    A tricky one, as Buddhism is a religion of acceptance, rather than activism — but let’s see….

    At least the world’s eyes are upon the country and hopefully stay on and make noise, and whoever can provides some support, so that the Burmese government can’t just go on as if nothing happened.

  10. Ingrid

    mishmish, the military can keep the people down that is why it’s been in power for so long. I agree with your notion that it also needs to come from the people. However, in this situation, the people can not overthrow a military regime without arms. Also, think of South Africa, enough boycotting will undermine the economy and economy/money, speaks.
    A whole people revolting will only cause the majority to be killed and their strenght in numbers will dwindle fast. The only way to aid the people is to stranglehold the economic interests.

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