Friday, October 05, 2007

Flaming Peacocks: Boycott China to Free Burma

Beijing has been especially bull-headed despite the push from the international community to use its position to exert diplomatic pressure on the junta. Just this evening (Yangon time), the Chinese ambassador to the UN objected to holding an open door session for Mr Ibrahim Gambari to brief the United Nations Security Council, saying that "Mr Gambari might be uncomfortable."

So, as supporters of the revolution, who are forced to watch helplessly as China keeps its big-brother stance to junta, what should we do?

Kick them where it hurts most.

Boycott the Olympics. Boycott any products with the label "Made in China".

Because money talks. And that seems to be the language of the Chinese.

Boycott the Olympics

China has been sparing no efforts to prepare for the 2008 Games, from demolishing old estates, building a state-of-the-art stadium inspired by bird nests, cutting down traffic to combat air pollution, and erecting clock towers all over Beijing to remind all its denizens of how the big day looms.

Obviously, it matters to China, and China has never denied it. After all, the Chinese Government is willing to demolish whole estates and displace its own people (in an eerily similar fashion to its burmese counterparts), just to clean up its image for the Olympics. (Of course, that's another story altogether, one that the international community should be well aware of as well.)

Boycott China-made Products

Yes, they are cheap, and yes, it is hard to avoid them; even when you think you are buying a genuine keepsake from Europe, it can in fact be made in China.

But it cannot be so difficult if you put your mind to it. As it is, many of these products have been found tainted with lead, or some other substance detrimental to health. You could get burned because your pyjamas are flammable. You could get seriously ill because the cough syrup contains industrial chemicals. You could be effectively be blinding your baby by feeding him/her milk powder lacking in essential proteins/vitamins.

So, after all, it isn't difficult to boycott China. The choice is yours.

As Nobel Laureate Daw Aung San Su Kyi said, please use your liberty to promote ours.

Note: The title is borrowed from Patrick Cook-Deegan's article which can be found in the Brown Daily Herald.

More articles advocating the boycott of Beijing's 2008 Olympics can be found in the following publications: Belfast Telegraph , Washington Post , and The Australian

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