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Indian papers (r)
The Asian Age
May 17, 1999
Suu Kyi finds strength in crisis
Rangoon: Opposition leader Aung San Suu Kyi says Burma?s dire economic and
social crisis under the military junta is working in her favour, but
analysts warn she is losing her 10-year struggle for democracy.
Ms Suu Kyi told reporters on Friday that Burma was at a crisis point with
soaring inflation, collapsing health services and an uneducated generation
of young people with little hope for the future.
However, she insisted it was a "fallacy" to think that she, or even her
National League for Democracy, could break the military?s stranglehold on
power and give people the democracy they voted for overwhelmingly in 1990.
"I don?t think I myself alone can do anything. I think this is a fallacy to
think that one person or even one organisation can change a whole society,"
she told reporters in an interview at her dilapidated party headquarters.
Ms Suu Kyi?s non-violent battle with arguably one of the world?s most
oppressive military regimes has been likened to the struggles of Mahatma
Gandhi and Mr Nelson Mandela.
In 1990, two years after the military killed thousands of protesters during
a pro-democracy uprising, her party won a landslide victory in Burma?s
first democratic election in almost 30 years. But the junta has refused to
give up power, saying it must first draft a Constitution through a
handpicked supporters. "We never look back. There are many differences
between 1988 and now. Everything is worse now than it was in 1988," Ms Suu
Kyi said. "Every day that the country deteriorates, the credibility and the
respectability of the authorities suffer."