What should pro-democracy leaders in Burma do when the army shows signs of wanting to make a deal and withdraw from direct control over the country? On the other hand, it still wants a veto over the decisions of a democratically elected government.
Burma is the second poorest country in Asia (after North Korea), although 50 years ago it was the second richest. It is the second most repressive dictatorship in Asia, outdone again only by North Korea. It is third from the bottom on Transparency International’s list of the world’s most corrupt countries. And the credit for all these distinctions goes to the Burmese army, which has ruled the country with an iron hand for the past half-century.