I do not like to encourage personalized politics, so we would not like it to be thought that just because certain political personalities were attacked, this means the situation is very grave. The true gravity of the situation comes from the fact that ordinary members of the NLD are repressed all the time. We don't want a completely paralyzed political organization, while a select few leaders are protected by international attention.
It is not easy for a people conditioned by fear under the iron rule of the principle that might is right to free themselves from the enervating miasma of fear. Yet even under the most crushing state machinery courage rises up again and again, for fear is not the natural state of civilized man.
[T]here is a vast difference in the attitude of a man with a gun in his hand and that of one without a gun in his hand. When a man does not have a gun in his hand, or a woman for the matter, he or she tries harder to use his or her mind, sense of compassion, and intelligence to work out a solution.
If you look at the democratic process as a game of chess, there have to be many, many moves before you get to checkmate. And simply because you do not make any checkmate in three moves does not mean it's stalemate. There's a vast difference between no checkmate and stalemate. This is what the democratic process is like.
Unless there is free and fair competition, there can't be healthy economic development. And what we have in Burma now is not an open-market economy that allows free and fair competition, but a form of colonialism makes a few people very, very wealthy. It's what you would crony capitalism.
People should be concerned about installing a more sensible, responsible government. What we [the burmese] need is a government that is accountable and transparent, so that the people know what it is doing and can judge for themselves whether or not they like what is being done.
The best way to deal with AIDS is through education. So we need a really widespread AIDS education program. In fact, what we need in Burma is education of all kinds - political, economic, and medical. AIDS education would be just part of a whole program for education, which is so badly needed in our country.
I think corporations should give more attention to this suffering and should wait to invest until there is a responsible government in Burma. I do not think it is a good idea to separate economics from politics; in fact, I do not think economics can be separated from politics It's quite understandable that many business concerns think only about their own profits It's up to the public to put as much pressure as it can on these companies, through shareholder resolutions and public actions.