As the BBC article notes, US President George W. Bush has announced a tightening of existing US economic sanctions against Burma. I really don’t understand how economic sanctions are supposed to help the situation. Dispatching a small group of U.N. peace keepers to protect the protesters would seem like a better route. However, such an action would likely be blocked by China.
Burma would seem to be on its own. I have hope that peaceful, non-violent protest may affect change. However, I do not see how it works in the face of the abject tyranny and violent crackdowns. In order to work, the non-violent protest would have to compel the soldiers not to fire on the unarmed civilians. Historically, this seldom seems to occur.
However, the future of humanity rests on ordinary people seeing themselves and each other outside the systems in which they are placed, and then doing the right thing. In this sense, Burma’s situation is not unique. There is no indication that some outside power will come and save humanity. As sad as it is to say, I don’t have much faith that the world will do much more than what is proposed by George W. Bush. Burma will have to find a way forward without outside intervention. Their solution should serve as a lesson to us all.