Do you wish to stop Burma’s system of impunity? See the end of military dictatorship in Burma – make it weak and financially broke so that it can no longer sustain itself? Every year we, Americans, are given the opportunity to weaken and undermine the junta and at the same time, show our solidarity with the democracy movement by renewing sanctions on Burma!
Right now, the Burmese Freedom & Democracy Act is up for renewal. Senator Mitch McConnell introduced the bill in the Senate for renewal on May 6, 2010. Last year, we had over 60 co-sponsors in both the House and the Senate, a record high in the history of the bill.
This year, we must top that. 2010 is a very critical time for Burma, and it is very important that you commit 2 minutes of your time to email your Senators and urge them to co-sponsor the renewal of this legislation. This is no time for the U.S. to reward the regime by lifting sanctions. Especially so in light of the upcoming sham elections and a constitution that gives the military unlimited and unchecked powers. The regime obviously has neither the interest nor the will to uphold democratic values and fundamental human rights because even ahead of the scheduled elections, it continues to commit human rights abuses and in fact, has increased its military aggression toward Burma’s ethnic minorities in an effort to bring them under its iron grip.
Given the urgency of the situation in Burma, we must do everything we can to –
1) prevent the regime from gaining the legitimacy it seeks through its farcical election process
2) stop the flow of hundreds of millions of dollars into the pockets of military generals and their cronies
3) show our support for Aung San Suu Kyi, the 2,200 political prisoners, and the 58 million people of Burma who wish to live in peace and security and with dignity.
The Burmese Freedom & Democracy Act achieves all the major objectives for a free Burma. So I urge you to check out our U.S. Campaign for Burma website, follow the links, and send an email to your Senators, asking them to co-sponsor the bill. The more co-sponsors we have, the stronger impact it will have on the democracy movement in Burma and the illegitimacy of the regime.
The occasion calls for me to share with you a famous quote by Mikhail Gorbachev: “If not you, then who? If not now, then when?”