Free counter and web stats


..There's a little Samuel Pepys in all of us..

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Imagine such a scenario in a 'western' country..
One in which religious leaders.. members of religious orders, both monks, nuns, priests, ministers, pastors.. all took to the streets along with tens of thousands of their followers.. to protest a failing economy and a government that is more concerned with maintaining it's power base, than in the welfare of it's country's citizens..
You are among the protestors. You know that 19 years ago, a similar protest ended with the army first infiltrating your protest marches with thugs and members of the military who will themselves start fires, cause a violent disturbance, which justifies those in charge to send in the troops in earnest, and it ended with more than 3 thousand of your fellow protestors being killed, and thousands more interred, tortured, with the leader of the Opposition Party, which had been democratically elected, placed under house arrest which remains in place to this day.
You know this. It's part of your national history.
Yet, you join the protest.
Such is the case in Burma.
Now we in the West have little we can actually do to effect a change in this situation.. Burma's already under heavy UN sanctions..
But your neighbour, China, is trying desperately to join the world community, and is in a position to step in, and impose effective sanctions against a military government which holds power illegaly..
Would you reasonably expect, as a citizen of Burma, for such a vast power such as China, to step in and help the popular cause?
This would not be tolerated in a Western society. Any government imposing such a repressive rule, would become outcast by it's peers.. by it's trading partners..
The UN would be called in, and delegations from diplomatic corps would be flooding in to try and negotiate on behalf of the people..
But while China has told the Burmese government that it 'would regret seeing the same level of violence evidenced 19 years ago..', that's about as far as it's gone..
There has been no pressure put on China by the West, to exercise whatever influence it might have to resolve the Burmese problem.. It would seem the prospect of disturbing such a huge potential economic market is by far the most important Western consideration..
So.. we will sit back, and allow a repeat of the events of 19 years ago in Burma..
And we'll sweep the fact that China could have been an active force in bringing democracy to an Asian country under the carpet, as long as Walmart and McDonalds can keep their franchises open..
We are an exceedingly hypocritical people betimes.. We choose which governments we'll bully into submission for economic or strategic advantage, while allowing others to continue with regemes so supressive, that the goal of 'democracy' is trampled underfoot with impunity..
It would be an extraordinarily advantageous step, in the eyes of the West, for China to step in, and demand, as we have in Iraq, that a democratic government be allowed to take power..
But, China is well aware that it need do nothing. That we in the west are more concerned with their economic potential than we are with the democratic efforts of a tiny Buddhist country in the middle of nowhere..
It makes one ashamed.

No comments:

Search This Blog

Blog Archive