Burma's state-run media claimed today that the CIA ordered the 1991 Nobel Peace Prize be awarded to pro-democracy leader Aung San Suu Kyi.
"All that was bestowed on her, including the Nobel Prize . . . given according to the wishes of the CIA . . . were wages for being used by the West Bloc," the New Light of Myanmar newspaper said.Burma's military regime has stepped up its verbal and printed attacked on Suu Kyi in recent weeks as part of a crackdown in which 262 of her followers were arrested. About half have since been released.
A favorite tactic of the military regime is to portray Suu Kyi as a tool of former colonial powers bent on subjugating Burma. Most Burmese, however, believe Suu Kyi is working for the country's interests, and not for foreign powers.
In an essay, the newspaper questioned why India's Mahatma Gandhi and Suu Kyi's father, Burma's independence hero Gen. Aung San, never received the Nobel Prize.
"These persons opposed the colonialists," the paper said. "Suu Kyi is working according to the wishes of the British colonialists and opposing Myanmar's (Burma's) independence and sovereignty while attacking the economy."
The essay was written by Thet Shay, which is believed to be the pen name of a high-ranking military officer.
The military regime has repeatedly banned the weekend gatherings outside Suu Kyi's home in which she speaks to thousands of supporters, and decreed that anyone who threatens the stability of the state can be imprisoned for up to 20 years.
Suu Kyi won the 1991 Nobel Peace Prize for her efforts to bring democracy to Burma, which the government now calls Myanmar. The country has been under military rule since 1962.