Resistance 28 September 2007Posted by marisacat in 2008 Election, DC Politics, Inconvenient Voice of the Voter, WAR!.
Tear gas hovered above the steps of the Shwedagon Pagoda on Wednesday in Yangon as the riot police broke up demonstrations. [REUTERS]
Witnesses and diplomats reached by telephone inside Myanmar, a sealed country, said troops were now confronting and attacking smaller groups of civilians around the city, sometimes running after them through narrow streets, sometimes firing at protesting groups.
“Today has been quieter than previous days, meaning far fewer protesters came out, but the military is being very quick to use violence, tear gas, guns and clubs to break it up,” said the chief diplomat at the United States Embassy, Shari Villarosa.
Diplomats said there was no way to estimate the numbers of dead and wounded in Yangon or other cities, but they said it was certainly far higher than what the junta has reported.
Bob Davis, Australia’s ambassador to Myanmar, said that based on unconfirmed reports, he was certain that the death toll was “several multiples of the 10 acknowledged by the authorities.”
Vineyardsaker has a provocative post on Ahmadinejad’s description of America as a “big prison.” He posts this chilling data (emphasis added):
Incarcerations per 100,000 population (sample):
1014____Texas (in 1999) (governor George W. Bush)
715_____United States of America (2001)
189_____Hong Kong (China)
142_____United Kingdom: England & Wales
125_____Republic of (South) Korea
TimesOnline takes a close look at the events surrounding the shooting of Mr Nagai, the Japanese photojournalist…
[S]ources in the opposition National League for Democracy said they believed that he was shot by an army sniper who may have mistaken him for a Burmese citizen.
There has clearly been gunfire because the demonstrators – some of them women – are fleeing in terror. Just one man, wearing a black shirt, is looking back. Two other demonstrators appear to be trying to lift a fallen colleague.
Chasing them are three members of the security forces. The officer in blue, who is about to beat a protester with a rubber baton, is a member of the riot police. The soldier in green is wielding a German G3 automatic rifle and is thought to be a member of the 77th Light Division. The third officer, dressed in grey, is a policeman. Just in front of his bamboo shield a teargas cylinder is flying through the air.
Seconds later Mr Nagai is lying prostrate, a look of agony on his face. The bloodstain on his shirt is now clearly visible. His right arm, bearing the camera, has fallen to his side. [snip]
Raimondo’s latest anti Dem screed….
It was Gravel who raised the real issue coming to the fore in this campaign, and that is the looming confrontation with Iran:
“There was a vote in the Senate today – Joe Lieberman, who authored the Iraq resolution, has offered another resolution, and it’s essentially a fig leaf to let George Bush go to war with Iran. And I want to congratulate Biden for voting against it, Dodd for voting against, and I’m ashamed of you, Hillary, for voting for it. You’re not going to get another shot at this, because what’s happened if this war ensues – we invade and they’re looking for an excuse to do it.
“And Obama was not even there to vote.”
How that last barb must have stung the self-righteous Obama, whose self-backslapping – “I was against this war [in Iraq] from the beginning” – was an embarrassment. Hillary’s sinister laugh, when given the opportunity by Russert to answer Gravel, ought to have curdled the blood of even the hardest of the antiwar movement’s hardcore Democratic partisans. What followed was a pretty faithful recitation of the War Party’s talking points regarding Iran and the resolution passed by the Senate:
“My understanding of the revolutionary guard in Iran is that it is promoting terrorism. It is manufacturing weapons that are used against our troops in Iraq. It is certainly the main agent of support for Hezbollah, Hamas and others, and in what we voted for today, we will have an opportunity to designate it as a terrorist organization, which gives us the options to be able to impose sanctions on the primary leaders to try to begin to put some teeth into all this talk about dealing with Iran.”
Asia Times has a post up on blogging from inside Burma (I added http:// to the non hyper links in the article but have not checkd each link):
One poignant blog, by a young, “sensitive” Myanma woman who identifies herself as Dawn, appears at http://www.xanga.com/dawn_1o9.
“Around 1:20 or 1:30pm, I heard someone saying that the police/army started shooting in the air,” Dawn wrote, describing Yangon on Wednesday.
“At 2:00pm, I heard that buses have stopped running on Sule Pagoda Road. Someone from the office went out to there, and came running back when there were shots being fired. I heard the gunshots too, but it sounded a lot like clapping. So I went out to look,” Dawn said.
International media said at least one person died when security forces attacked protesters on Wednesday, though some news reports said up to five people may have been killed.
In gallows humor, Dawn wrote: “I’ll let you know when I’ve been shot. I’ll ask someone before I die to blog about it. If it was an instant death, I’ll come to my sister in my dream and tell her to blog about it, or I won’t rest in peace.”
Another popular blogger created a “prosaic collection” of vivid text and photos at http://ko-htike.blogspot.com and said, “now regime open fire into these group, and used fire engine to sweep the blood on the street”.
Foreigners blogging in Myanmar include http://burmesedayze.blogspot.com, written by someone who moved to Yangon in March 2006. [snip]
I will probably add more to this post today…