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23 November 2010, Foreign Affairs

Burma’s Stubborn State

Although freeing Aung Suu Kyi may allow Burma’s military leaders to escape scrutiny for now, their budding nuclear ambitions could rejuvenate international interest in placing pressure on their regime.

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In November 2007, Derek Mitchell and I published an essay in Foreign Affairs (“Asia’s Forgotten Crisis,” November/December 2007) arguing that U.S. policy toward Burma (renamed Myanmar by the country’s military junta) needed to move beyond the debate over whether to place sanctions on the country’s repressive military junta or engage it. We also asserted that Washington must form a comprehensive strategy that leverages regional relationships and uses a mix of incentives to nudge the isolated regime toward democracy.

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