Before China’s 8-8-8 was Burma’s 8888

Repression in BurmaThe superlatives were flying at the opening ceremonies of the Beijing Hyperbowl: it was China’s defining moment of the modern age, on, the newscasters said, “eight eight of o’ eight.” But before 888 in Beijing was August 8 of 1988 in Rangoon, known as the 8888 Uprising. This movement for democratic reform in Burma was brutally suppressed by General Ne Win who directed that his soldiers’ “Guns were not to shoot upwards.” This resulted in the massacre of 3,000 students and priests and a military coup which survives today, supported by the Chinese government.

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