Protesting Burma

Fallows warns against an Olympics boycott:

The idea of taking a brave, clear stand on China and Burma, and waving away as mere details any thought about the consequences, is reminiscent of the [Washington] Post editorial page's relentlessly pro-war stance in the year leading up to the invasion of Iraq. Then the editorial page, under Hiatt, was impatient with any suggestion that we should wait, that we should think hard about the consequences of an occupation, that we should be very careful before launching a discretionary war. All of that was for wimps.

I've learned my lesson, Jim. I do believe in economic sanctions against the junta; I do believe in pressuring China. But Burma has one thing on common with Iraq. It has long been torn apart by a variety of ethnic groups - Karen, Chin, Shan - who fear the majority Burmans. This was partly how the British retaine control (as in Iraq). Maintaining a democracy in such a diverse society is not easy. Ask the Spanish. A revolution is the beginning of a process of reform and governance, not a panacea.