Burma's Agony

National League for Democracy-Liberated Area / AP

Tear-gassing protesters on Sept. 26

[NOTE: The junta that runs the country imposed a systematic name change several years ago, decreeing that Burma was to be called Myanmar and the capital Rangoon was to be Yangon. The opposition has never accepted these changes; neither has the U.S. government. TIME continues to use Burma and Rangoon.]

The burgundy robes of Buddhist monks usually evoke a sense of spiritual calm. But for the repressive junta that has ruled Burma for 45 years, the recent sight of shaven-headed clerics marching the streets has been anything but soothing. For more than a week now, tens of thousands of Buddhist...

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