Once again the despicable military junta that holds the nation of Burma hostage has forced the world to examine the presumptive “right” of inviolable national sovereignty. A horrifying natural cataclysm has just sheared away tens of thousands of its captive and wretched citizens, and laid its principal city to waste, while hundreds of thousands more — having already been reduced to ignominious poverty by their long years of thralldom to a brutal and criminally incompetent tyranny — now face the certain prospect of lethal famine and pestilence. The civilized peoples of the world stand at their gates, seeking nothing more than to help a ruined and prostrate country bind its wounds, feed its hungry, clear its rubble, and bury its dead. But, jackals that they are, Burma’s captors greet their visitors with a feral and desperate snarl, caring only to defend their kill.
That in the 21st century the world still permits entire nations to be kidnapped and enslaved in this way should shame us all.