Obama can learn from Bush on Burma

As President Barack Obama dismantles the legacy of the Bush administration, there is one area in which he should actually emulate and build on his predecessor’s record: Burma.

Whatever else one thinks of George Bush, few could deny the contribution he, and particularly his wife Laura, made to raising the profile of the suffering in Burma. In 2005, he spent almost an hour in the Oval Office with a young Shan woman activist from Burma, Charm Tong, and heard about the military regime’s use of rape as a weapon of war. In 2006, a day after former Czech President Vaclav Havel and former Archbishop of Cape Town Desmond Tutu published a report calling for Burma to be placed on the UN security council agenda, the US declared its support for the initiative.

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