Thursday, September 27, 2007

More on the Olympics Question

I asked Drew Thompson for his thoughts on the question I posed in the last entry about China's desire for a "good Olympics" as a means of leverage, and he noted:

"The Chinese were caught by surprise by advertisements and op-eds linking Darfur to the Olympics in major papers, even though US academics have been warning them about it for some time. The real connundrum is that China's stance on Darfur shifted, and it is tempting to link the pressure with the policy outcome. Myanmar might be very different from Sudan.

"If the situation in Myanmar deteriorates further and violence ensues on a larger, systematic scale, the Chinese government will be vulnerable to accusations that it has protected and supported a rogue regime. And it bears reminding that the 1988 demonstrations in Burma that were so brutally suppressed is known as the "8888 uprising," standing for August 8, 1988, which is the day the students took to the streets. The opening ceremony in Beijing will occur is twenty years to the day from the start of the protests in Rangoon."

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