We had meant to write this post two days ago, the day Nobel peace prize laureate Aung San Suu Kyi celebrated her 67th birthday. It also happened to be the day she arrived in Europe. In fact, it would be her first trip outside her native Myanmar (Burma) since 1988 when she returned home from Britain to tend to her ailing mother. As a result of that one trip home she found herself appointed the general secretary of Burma’s National League for Democracy and subsequently a figurehead in the growing uprisings against decades of corrupt military rule in Burma.
What followed were a series of house arrests and detainment spanning more than 20 years, where she found determination amidst heartbreak and increasing influence despite her imprisonment. The regime may have locked her away, but her people never gave up on her, and the world never forgot her.
Ms Suu Kyi was awarded the Nobel peace prize in 1991 for her constant non-violent struggle and fight for democracy and human rights in her homeland of Burma. However, she was unable to receive the award at the time because she was under house arrest. Now, more than two decades later, she journeyed to Oslo where she delivered her long overdue Nobel lecture. Of the Nobel peace prize, she said, “‘To receive this award is to remind me that 24 years ago, I took on duties from which I have never been relieved.”
It is our great honour to provide the following link where you can hear and read about her Nobel lecture and the admirable lady herself. We listened to the whole twenty-eight or so minutes of her lecture, including all the clapping at the end, and there was no doubt in our minds that before us was a woman of conviction with unwavering compassion; a woman of immense knowledge yet grounded in humility; a beautiful, elegant, charming human being. Charming, just absolutely charming.
We wish Ms Suu Kyi a happy 67th birthday and many more to come.