Bleak Burma

The generals know they cannot improve the social and economic plight of the Burmese, but they will not let go.

Fourteen years ago, Burma's present junta came into power promising to bring about democracy and prosperity. The promises were never honoured. Now, trouble is brewing in military-ruled Burma.

Rangoon-watchers and analysts warn that a repetition of the social unrest and political instability that took place in 1988 is looming on the horizon. As the social and economic situation deteriorates, people are acting out of desperation and frustration. "We are on the brink of starvation", a senior Rangoon-based journalist told this correspondent in early September. However, his warning will not reach the Burmese people or authorities. His dire prognosis will not be allowed into print by the notorious Press Censorship Board.

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Himal Southasian