Captured on the faces of the Nobel Peace Prize laureate Saung San Suu Kyi, and the throngs of supporters and well-wishers, jubilation! Elation! Freedom!
At least for now....
Yesterday, Suu Kyi was released from 7 years of house arrest, effectively ending a chapter in Myanmar's smothering and oftentimes brutal history of suppression and bullying its people. The last election held in the country, in 1990, was an overwhelming victory of Suu Kyi's National League for Democracy, but the military refused to relinquish power and instead systematically silenced, oppressed and imprisoned its opposition, including many Buddhist monks who still remain incarcerated.
Amnesty International has been working tirelessly to pressure the world's conscious into freeing political prisoners in Myanmar, and much depends in the future on what sort of restrictions the regime puts on Suu Kyi....will she be allowed to probe allegations of voting fraud, as is her most pressing intention, or will she be silenced once again? Will the military regime invent trumped up charges to put her back into house arrest, as they did 2 years ago? And who will free the scores of her followers, all branded political prisoners, suffering in Myanmar's draconian prisons?
"If we work in unity, we will achieve our goal."
Her words as she hung over her prison walls yesterday! So simple, so direct, no animosity, no posturing. Just a simple, profound reality.