A little over two weeks ago, Burma has been thrashed by Cyclone Nargis. It is reported that the death toll is in the low six-figures as a result of the cyclone itself. However, millions more are at risk of malnutrition and waterborne diseases. Many in the international community can consider the situation in Burma as one of the worst humanitarian disasters of the 21st century.
Currently, ships from the United States and France are waiting off the shore of Burma. However, many have requested they forget what the junta thinks and just give the aid to the people that need it. As Burma’s junta is trying to show the world it’s “controlling” the situation, actions speed louder than words. While Cyclone Nargis was supposed to overshadow voting on Burma’s referendum, the junta felt more importance on the voting than disaster recovery.
It was reported that a “majority” of Burma favored the referendum. However, many critics call it a sham for the junta to remain in control. There was no “No” choice present. There was only a “Yes” vote. Aung San Suu Kyi is supposed to be the leader of Burma. Suu Kyi won the elections back in 1990. However, the junta refused to acknowledge the results and placed her under house arrest for 12 years.
France and Great Britain support unilateral action in Burma. While there has been much international aid poured into Burma, it would seem as if the junta has done little to nothing in getting the necessary aid to the people. While there are millions of people needing food, Burma’s junta continued its rice exports. There are people who claimed to have been given spoiled food.
Recently, the US House has urged US President George W. Bush to back unilateral action into Burma.
So far, diplomats and UN officials were flown into Burma. At the same time, medical specialists from both Thailand and India were allowed in. However, only 30 of the Thai doctors and nurses are allowed to travel into the camps to treat the people.
While Burma’s junta is showing the world it’s handling things, many see it as a show or a mere illusion. While it is reported that the damage and death toll is massive, Burma’s junta is putting on an act that shows otherwise.
It seems that the rest of the world is not buying Burma’s act. This is one act that one would not pay to see. If people did pay to see this act, chances are that the money would probably end up in the pockets of the junta’s leaders.
Right now, over a million people are at risk of dying of diseases and starvation.