Because of a change in the formula, now the more the junta in Burma tries to keep Aung San Suu Kyi out of the picture, the stronger she becomes. The change in the formula will simply make it more difficult to let other world news upstage Burma.
What started off a few months ago as a seemingly unrelated series of events far from Burma, those events now have lead to keeping Burma in the spotlight. The first event was North Korea setting off a nuclear bomb and launching a series of missiles. That resulted in the United Nations (UN) imposing more sanctions on North Korea.
The next event was the defiant North Korea chose to defy the UN and sent a ship that was suspected of carrying weapons to Burma. Although the ship never arrived in Burma and turned back on its own after several days, it was enough to place focus on Burma’s junta as to what type of deal they were up to with North Korea.
The next event in the chain was US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton suggesting to the ASEAN summit that Burma should be dropped from ASEAN. That was turned down and seen as outside interference. But seemingly less than a week or so past and ASEAN was openly floating the idea, but not for the same reason.
At some point it was suggested that North Korea was giving Burma nuclear weapons technology, and that very quickly was the event that changed the formula in Burma. As history tends to repeat itself, in the early 1960’s the USSR was busy setting up a missile base in Cuba, and the US navy under the direction of then President John F. Kennedy set up a blockade with instructions to sink the ship(s) if they tried to run the blockade. That was the closest the world came to world war 3.
Needless to say now that the suggestion has been planted that Burma may be going nuke, the spot lights will not go away. The same intense focus Iran is getting will now also be applied to Burma.
This change in the formula will cause the world to stay focused on Burma and Aung San Suu Kyi. So the ‘Sit and wait until things cool off’ game that Burma has played in the past seems to be over, and keeping Aung San Suu Kyi locked up after sham trials will actually invite more sanctions. Although Burma may have physically beaten back the democratic movement inside Burma’s borders, outside Aung San Suu Kyi has moved from local focus to global focus.
The junta in Burma is aware of what is going on and is offering crumbs in the hopes the problem will go away. The fact that a US senator went to Burma, met with the Junta, Met with Aung San Suu Kyi, and took home the American that snuck in to see Aung San Suu Kyi is far contrast to completely blowing off UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon just a month or so earlier.
Burma’s junta is clearly trying to turn down the heat where as before it was just a waiting game. They know this will not go away on its own this time unless something major happens some place else. But that will only be temporary relief, as when it comes to nuclear weapons, the world does not simply drop it over time.