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Saturday, October 13, 2007

Myanmar Unfolding

You probably heard already what's going on in Myanmar...

Myanmar: Nine dead in crackdown

YANGON, Myanmar (CNN) -- Nine people have been killed in a crackdown on anti-government protests in Myanmar, after attempts to clear demonstrators from the streets of Yangon on Thursday, authorities say.

The dead include eight protesters and a Japanese man, Myanmar authorities said, adding that another 11 protesters were injured.

An American witness told CNN soldiers waded into a crowd of protesters in Myanmar and beat several of them mercilessly, at least one of them to death

"All of a sudden, the police and military guys started coming toward the crowd, and all of a sudden started beating them and running after them," said the woman, who witnessed the incident from atop a nearby building.

"And in one corner they got around, maybe, five or seven people, and they started beating them so bad for almost five minutes, and then they took them and put them in trucks.

"And there was this one guy, laying down on the floor, and he was dead. And then these same police came a few minutes later and picked him up and took him to the police station."

Red-robed Buddhist monks who had led several days of marches were largely absent from the streets Thursday after soldiers raided monasteries the night before. Monks reportedly were beaten and taken into custody or confined to the monasteries.

It was just a few weeks ago when I saw Jim Carrey at YouTube, not his usual comic self, trying to raise awareness in Myanmar and Aung San Suu Kyi's pro-democracy crusade. Now, it has caught the eyes of the international community.

Philippine history of not too long ago would probably bear the closest semblance to these events, and I don't think Filipinos would have a hard time relating to the Burmese people. Napagdaanan na natin yan, di ba? Somehow I can't help but feel fortunate that we've dug ourselves out from the same predicament (at least, to some degree).

How bad is it over there that the military junta has to govern from hidden headquarters? If you have a few minutes to spare, check this site out and know the answer.

No one would be willing to trade places and liberties with the Burmese. Ninety percent of the population is living under just one dollar a day.

"Please, use your liberty to promote ours." - Aung San Suu Kyi

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