Disaster unfolding in Burma
For the past 40 years, the world has tolerated one outrage after another against the people of Burma by a succession of military dictatorships. Imprisonment, executions and brutal suppression of any dissent have been the way of life in Burma for more than a generation, while the junta's neighbors, supporters and critics alike, have only made lame excuses for doing nothing.
Now a major crime against humanity is unfolding before our eyes: the denial and diversion of aid that amounts to a death sentence for thousands of people.
Will a world that waited until it was too late to take action in Cambodia and Rwanda continue to watch passively, begging the Burmese tyrants to let in a small trickle of aid, which most likely will wind up in the hands of the military? Or will the international community remove the generals while there is still a chance to save lives? This is a good question to ask as the world prepares for the opening ceremony of the Olympics in China, the main supporter of the Burmese dictatorship.
Roger Algase, New York