Tuesday, October 19, 2004

The General joins The Lady
While we are immersed in the spectacular fall of our own Gen. Garcia (courtesy of his reckless son and multiloquent wife), here comes news from Burma of a far more spectacular fall: Gen. Khin Nyunt, the prime minister, has been arrested on charges of corruption and is now, as BBC reports, under house arrest.

Khin Nyunt belongs to the troika of powerful generals--the other two are Than Shwe and Maung Aye--who control the military junta in Burma. It was only a year ago when Khin Nyunt was demoted to the prime ministership. His arrest now can thus be seen as the culmination of the long-rumored power struggle among the three generals.

This is sad news for Burmese democracy activists all around the world. Khin Nyunt was widely seen as the more progressive and reasonable of the generals, favouring talks with pro-democracy leader Aung San Suu Kyi. After his appointment as prime minister, he announced a seven-point roadmap to democracy.

It has been a favorite political pipe dream in many a Burmese activist's mind that Khin Nyunt would bolt out of the SPDC, ally himself with Aung San Suu Kyi and seize power in a People Power revolution. Who could have known he'd just end up under house arrest himself? Tsk, truly sad news.

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