Thursday, December 30, 2010

Hope for the New Year - US Campaign for Burma

There are moments when working towards democracy in Burma is difficult--when there is little light at the end of the tunnel.

For over twenty years, I have been engaged in one of the great struggles of our time. For many of those years we have ended the year without significant progress. It has been difficult coming to the office to hear about another friend thrown into prison. Or to learn about another village burned, more families forced to flee for their lives.

Please consider making a contribution to our movement today as we enter a new, critical year for Burma.

But this year is different--we have two great gifts to celebrate. For the first time since the U.S. Campaign for Burma was founded, Aung San Suu Kyi is free. For the first time, we are working in concert with our leader mobilizing people to action.

Our second gift is the progress we have made towards finally holding the military regime accountable for its crimes. For years, the international community paid no attention while the regime denied abusing ethnic groups. But this lie is closer to being confronted by the international community after decades of neglect.

So there is much to celebrate as we end 2010. We want to thank you so much for your support and making these efforts possible. Our staff is small--only five people working full time. But we manage to magnify your voice and the voices of other Burma activists on the global stage.

This is due to your support: our grassroots supporters are the biggest funders for our campaign. Without you, we could not join together to make sure that the people of Burma know they have American support. Without you, we would not be able to push policymakers in Washington to make Burma a priority. Without you, we would not be able to secure millions of dollars of aid for survivors of the regime's atrocities. Without you, we would be missing a critical link in Burma's global solidarity movement.

Please consider making a contribution to our movement today as we enter a new, critical year for Burma.

We want you to know that your contribution to USCB leads directly to lives being saved on the ground in Burma. Your contribution has a huge multiplier affect--USCB helps secure U.S. funding of millions of dollars of "cross border" aid to groups working on Burma's borders. Last year, $4 million was sent to border groups who risk their lives by providing healthcare and education to Burma's conflict areas. Since 2006, we have secured tens of millions of US dollars for cross-border aid.

Your support also has a huge multiplier affect on global Burma policy. When the US leads on Burma policy, many countries follow. For example in August of this year Obama came out in support of an investigation into crimes against humanity in Burma. In the following month, 8 other countries announced their support. Our work really spans the globe and changes the international conversation on Burma.

Finally, we want to let you know that the people inside Burma working for change are well aware of American support for their cause. My friends inside Burma understand that they have an ally in the United States--and they are immensely grateful for your support.

Help us give Burma's democracy activists more support by making a year-end gift today.

You are part of one of the world's most significant global solidarity movements. For twenty years we have worked to restore hope to a country that is run by brutal dictators. Our movement showed its strength when Aung San Suu Kyi was released in November due to global pressure.

But we cannot stop here. We have much to do. We need your support to make sure that Aung San Suu Kyi's latest release translates into meaningful change in Burma, not more of the same. This support comes through your calls, emails, community events, film screenings, and your financial support. As we end the year, we are grateful for your time and consideration of supporting USCB.

Thank you for all of your support for the U.S. Campaign for Burma and the people of Burma. We are truly grateful to work with you in one of the great struggles of our time.

Have a Great New Year,
Aung Din
Executive Director
Former Burmese Political Prisoner
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