The WSJ reports:
U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton arrived in Myanmar on Wednesday on a historic mission to gauge whether the government’s recent steps toward reform are real, even as dissident groups stepped up their efforts to keep the U.S. from lifting sanctions soon.
Ever since Myanmar’s new government launched a series of limited but important reforms this year—including a partial release of political prisoners, a loosening of restrictions on the Internet, and the legalization of labor unions—observers have been both excited by the prospects of change and skeptical about government intent in the resource-rich Southeast Asian nation.
Now U.S. officials face renewed pressure from exiled dissidents and human rights activists who fear the emerging thaw between U.S. leaders and Myanmar’s government is moving too fast. Their offensive includes a series of new reports released in recent days documenting human rights abuses in the country, especially in areas controlled by ethnic insurgent groups that have fought on-again, off-again wars with Myanmar military’s for years.
The NYT says:
Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton arrived here on Wednesday to measure the depth of the political and economic opening the country’s new government has unexpectedly begun.
After years of abysmal relations between the United States and Myanmar, the Obama administration has promised to respond to progress — Mrs. Clinton’s trip being the most significant reward so far — even as it presses for more significant steps to end the country’s repressive rule and international isolation.
Those include freeing hundreds more political prisoners, an end to often violent repression of democracy advocates and ethnic groups, and clarification of the country’s illicit cooperation with North Korea on developing ballistic missiles and, possibly, nuclear technologies.
And there’s a lot more where that came from.