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I am the media consultant to Canadian Friends of Burma in Ottawa, the
principal Canadian NGO dedicated to helping the people of Burma achieve
As someone who has considerable experience writing on worldwide human rights
issues, including from within South and Southeast Asia (I'm also a
contributor to New Internationalist (NI) magazine's June 1996 special issue
on Burma) I must say I find Stephen Brookes's exuberant defence of his
reportage from Rangoon a fascinating study in self-satisfaction. Hats off to
him in that deprtment.
The gusto with which he sneers, while in evident admiration of one of the
most morally corrupt regimes of our century, brings nothing so much to mind
as a certain odious ex-patriate - and refugee from democracy - who famously
bet on the wrong side of history half a century ago, in the days when Hitler
was on a roll.
It is breathtaking to think that anyone could possibly attempt a crdible
defence of a regime whose economic advancement program is rooted in the
advantages to be derived from slave labour, while readily acknowledging his
fact as merely a regrettable necessity.
But maybe that's par for the course in his world, as a disenchanted Democrat
from the U.S. who found intellectual comfort in a larger darkness. Wat he
might like also to explain is his sly insinuation, and thourhgly ad hominem
, attack on Aung San Suu Kyi. Sorry, but it is just not good enough to claim
- nudge, nudge, wink wink - that "I know something you don't, that she is a
Failing any, Brookes is simply a clever Internet libel artist. A Joseph
Goebbels copycat character assassin.
I challenge him to a public debate on the worldwide web..
It is one that he cannot possibly win - because he is so deeply wrong in
everything he professes to believe.