Tomorrow, October 4, 2007, is a day to show solidarity with the oppressed in Burma.
About a week ago, demonstrations began in the country of Burma, renamed Myanmar by the military junta who overtook the country. Buddhist monks took to the streets in what has been dubbed the Saffron Revolution. The demonstrations quickly turned deadly as monks and protesters were killed by the military. They are killing monks.
No true numbers can be recorded yet. The country is closed off to anyone trying to enter. A diplomatic envoy was just yesterday allowed to speak to a political prisoner, a Noble Peace Prize recipient, and opposition leader, Aung San Suu Kyi. The envoy is described as looking 'grim' as he departed from the meeting.
The people of Burma took to the streets to protest the government's price hike on fuel, more than doubling the cost. The average income in Burma is $200 a year. Burma is one of the poorest countries in the world.
People from all over the world have voiced indignation. Everyone from Laura Bush to Hollywood actor Jim Carrey have voiced support of those rising up, peacefully, in the streets. Our country has called for stricter sanctions on the junta. President Bush has decided to enforce stricter financial sanctions to Burma's leading generals.
Some call for the boycott of the Olympics in China. China is a prime source of support for the junta.
The military has pledged to track down protesters that have been photographed and punish them. Buddhist monasteries have been stormed and the monks have been killed.
Senator John McCain has called for Burma to be expelled from ASEAN - the Association of Southeast Asian Nations. "We should isolate Burma even further," he said, "And I refuse to call Burma Myanmar."
"China should also make a stand for human rights, " stated McCain while he called for the junta's censure and international condemnation of Burma's brutal leadership.
Actor Sylvester Stallone was recently filming a movie along the Salween River which separates Thailand and Burma. He returned to the U.S. eight days ago. Monday he said he was witness to unspeakable atrocities on the Burmese border. "We hear about Vietnam and Cambodia, and this was more horrific."
More than 100 people protested here in Houston Monday in front of the Chinese Consulate in support of the hundreds of Buddhist monks and the others who have been arrested, or killed, in the demonstrations. Many of those protesting in town Monday were refugees from decades of political unrest in Burma.
So, spread the word. An easy way to show support to Burmese bloggers, who have been silenced in the past and are now fighting to get the story of the protests out, is to join in on the International Bloggers' Day for Burma tomorrow. If you choose to do so, refrain from posting on your blog tomorrow, October 4 and put up one sentence: Free Burma! Underline the words if you so choose.
For bloggers, the slogan is: "One blogpost for Burma."
Easy enough. Every voice can make a difference.