VOA Burmese Blog

August 3, 2012

HIV AIDS Conference 2012


Ko Thar Nyunt Oo and I went to the 19th International AIDS conference at the Washington E. Convention center in Washington. There were so many people there from all around the world. People took the stage to speak about many topics and issues – on research, policy and how to cope with HIV/AIDS.

The second video that Ko Thar reported on was about the Red Ribbon Award Winners. Burma’s, The Help group had received the prestigious award. Daw Aung San Suu Kyi even had a special message to the audience. She gave a special thank you to the volunteers who are helping with the issue of AIDS and HIV. Everyone should be aware about HIV-AIDS- how to help others living with it and how to prevent the spread of it. The AIDS conference takes place every two years. Four years ago, it took place in Mexico. This year it takes place in the US; in two years, it’ll take place in Australia.

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Producer/ Reporter: Thar Nyunt Oo

Videographer/ Editor : Kaye Lin

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July 18, 2012

Daw Aung San Suu Kyi to Visit the US in September


Daw Aung San Suu Kyi will visit the US in September to accept the Global Citizens Award from Atlantic Council.  A representative from Atlantic Council had told VOA Burmese that Daw Suu will accept this award ” in person”. This will be the first time she will be coming to the US since working for the United Nations in the 1980’s.

In June, Daw Suu traveled across Europe for more than two weeks, meeting with state leaders and government officials. My editor, Khin Soe Win and I followed her around to different countries and cities as she accepted the prizes and made great speeches. You can watch more of Khin Soe Win’s videos on a later post.

Here are some of the pictures that we had taken in Europe while covering Daw Suu’s trip. This trip was personal for me as I had gotten to meet Burma’s ” heroine”.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

VOA was in Oslo, Norway to cover Daw Suu’s Nobel Peace Prize Speech:

May 8, 2012

The United States Holocaust Memorial Museum Awards Daw Aung San Suu Kyi with the Elie Wiesel Award


The Elie Wiesel Tribute dinner was held to honor leaders who have made a difference in their communities and for humanity. Elie Wiesel himself is a fellow Nobel Laureate and a Holocaust survivor who had seen the brutality of mankind during the Holocaust, yet his faith stayed intact. This year, the United States Holocaust museum bestowed Daw Aung San Suu Kyi with the honor of the Elie Wiesel award for her struggle towards democracy in non-violent means as she continues to fight- unshaken.

Elie Wiesel: “She’s an extraordinary human being with ideals and ideas. And all of these ideals and ideas are all there- not only for her own sake but for her country. And beyond that, to all of the people- men and women – anywhere and everywhere in the world- where ever people suffer. She is part of my consciousness – of my moral obligations. She should know that she’s not alone.”

Like Elie Wiesel, Ms. Gerda Weissman Klein is a Holocaust survivor, and she has experienced atrocities unimaginable. As she recalls the cruelty of mankind during the time of the Nazis, she also remembers the strength and resilience of the Jewish people which gave her as well as others freedom inevitably.

Ms. Gerda Weissman Klein: ” You, Madame, so far away in Burma, must know that you have inspired all those who look to the moon and who look to you who has been the guiding stars to so many who have lived in peril and in slavery. I too, have been deprived of freedom for 6 years in Nazi, Germany. Emptiness can be so heavy. How cries of pain can be so silent, yet you Madame are in every heart, every thought- of those present here tonight and all those who have worked for freedom and to the millions who are still yearning for freedom.”

Despite the despair that the memory of the Holocaust brings, ultimately, the night echoed the theme of courage and hope. Actress, Natalie Portman bestowed the Elie Viesel award to Daw Aung San Suu Kyi by reading a speech of hers from her book,“ Freedom from Fear”.

Natalie Portman: ” Here is what she said: It is not power that corrupts, but fear. It is not power that corrupts but fear. Fear of losing power corrupts those who wield it and fear of the scourge of power corrupts those who are subject to it…”

Daw Aung San Suu Kyi had words of her own for the tribute dinner. She spoke via a pre-recorded video.
Daw Aung San Suu Kyi: “There are certain things we must not forget, because we would not like these to be repeated in the future. And I thank and honor all of you who are trying to make known to the world- what should not happen again. And individuals can make all the difference- individuals who survive in spite of the greatest cruelty – in spite of the greatest trials and to teach other people that it’s possible to survive. And to you all who have not only survived but helped others to survive – by speaking of your experiences- and by teaching them how to be brave and how NOT to lose your integrity in the face of the greatest difficulty. I would like to say, “ Thank you. I honor you. I respect you. And I hope that I too will be able to be like you.”

With on going talks between the United States and Burma, White House Chief of Staff, Jack Lew spoke of the Lady of Burma.

Jack Lew: ” Many times Daw Suu could’ve decided that she had done enough that it was someone else’s turn to sacrifice. But she refused to give up. Instead she continued to inspire the entire world with her faith in nonviolent action and her belief that freedom would ultimately prove greater than tyranny.”

The dinner was a successful charity event, which honored the lives that were lost during the Holocaust and commemorated the past while at the same time reassuring that such a tragedy never happens again. As the United States and the Western world is reaching out to engage in Burma’s new transition to democracy, all eyes are on the Lady of Burma, Daw Aung San Suu Kyi with her extensive belief in the nation’s reform towards freedom.

English Version:

Burmese Version:

Producers: Thet Su Naing/ Kaye Lin

Assistant Producer: Lwin Nyein Chan Kyaw

Reporters: Thet Su Naing / Kaye Lin

Videography: Lwin Nyein Chan Kyaw / Kaye Lin

May 3, 2012

Interview with Priscilla Clapp- Former Charge D’ Affaires of Burma


Priscilla Clapp- Former Charge D’Affaires of Burma and current Senior Adviser to Asia Society, joins VOA’s Khin Soe Win to talk about Burma’s new reforms and what these reforms could mean for the future of the country. She also speaks about the challenges that Burma has to face in building this new democracy -which she explains is more than just rhetoric. She says that Burma is no longer a one man top down system-meaning, that the military is no longer the primary rule. There are different branches that have to be built and established in a democracy and it will take some time.
English Version:

Burmese Version:

March 22, 2012

VOA’s 2nd Interview with Derek Mitchell -Reform & Opportunity


VOA correspondent, U Kyaw Zan Tha met with US Special Envoy to Burma, Derek Mitchell for the second time, and they discussed the importance of the upcoming by-elections on April 1st, the United States’ position on sanctions now as well as after the elections, the road to reform and the opportunities that lay ahead for the people of Burma. Mitchell says that the US is going to be, ” assisting reform and assisting the movement from the privilege of the few to the benefit of the many.”

Watch the full interview here:

( Full text will be transcribed soon…)

March 12, 2012

VOA’s 70th Anniversary


Voice of America turned 70 years old on February 1st 2012, and VOA held a big celebration in honor of all the colleagues and memories that have made VOA as great as it is today. Representatives from 43 language services dressed up on the day to greet guests, governors, ambassadors and etc. to attend our event. VOA Burmese service dressed up in our traditional attire and joined the rest of our colleagues.

We also had four special guests who had sent videos to mark the broadcast agency’s 70th birthday. They need no introduction.

Daw Aung San Suu Kyi:

The Dalai Lama:

President Barack Obama:

Secretary of State Hillary Clinton:

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