A week ago or so, Myanmar saw a spark of hope in the march of thousands of monks in the streets carrying up-turned begging bowls as a symbol of protest against the ruling military junta. But sooner than later, that spark was quelled by Junta troops as soon as it was birthed. They open-fired at demonstrators, raided and vandalized monasteries and arrested truckloads of monks, barring the gates to prevent them from marching. Thousands of pro-democracy movement demonstrators have also been arrested and detained. The reported death toll by government media was 10 people, but witnesses have reported bodies floating in the rivers both men and women, monks and civilians. Casualties might number from several dozens to 200. Internet access was cut-off in the entire country to prevent the exchange of information about the country's situation and more troops have been deployed in the streets to stop anyone from making so much as the littlest noise. Demontrations began in the onset of sharp fuel price hikes, mostly done by the democratic movement and their supporters but the march of the monks has given new life to the protest against the iron-fisted military rule since 1962. A few major protests have been made that were systematically and forcibly suppressed and silenced in the past years. Yesterday, Myanmar was on the frontpage of one of the national dailies here and I wondered why it took so long. I'm glad, however, that it finally did. One might say ' who cares about Myanmar? We have our own problems', I would say we can't turn a blind eye to our neighbors (among other things). That little spark might seem to have been quickly diminished but I believe this will cause more than it seems. A UN envoy has been sent and has talked to both parties, the ruling Junta and Aung San Suu Kyi, the nobel peace prize laureate leader of the democratic movement who has been under house arrest in 12 of the past 18 years. No considerable change has been agreed on and made so far and so far these events might not be enough to reach the humanity of India and China to take on their bigger roles as leading investors of Myanmar but it has reached more peoples of the world and the concern of its leaders, including the Pope. All I can do now is write about it and pray for the perseverance of the people of Myanmar. We have removed one dictator and a dumb pseudo-president, I'm sure they can take on Than Shwe too. I'm reading "Simple Recipes" by Madeleine Thien. In "Alchemy",one of the stories included the book, is this line: That things got a lot worse before they got any better. I hope Myanmar's had its worst already.