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Aung San Suu Kyi In First Civilian Myanmar Government

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It’s a new dawn in the southeast Asian nation of Myanmar. The Burmese people are waking up to a new reality. For many a Myanma, it still feels like the dream they so closely cherished in their hearts, a dream where their nation undergoes a transformation from a total military dictatorship to a totally democratic country. But, the undeniable fact is that the Burmese people have been finally granted their most desired wish- A government, of the people, for the people and by the people. For them, the last part is what they wanted the most from this much-heard definition of Democracy- By The People.

suukyi1The election results have been officially announced. In what many analysts term as a major political milestone, civilian leaders, including Nobel Peace Prize laureate Aung San Suu Kyi, have successfully won the elections and have replaced the generals who have been governing the nation for more than a half-century.
The outgoing president, ex-general U Thein Sein, has formally relinquished his post and welcomed his successor, U Htin Kyaw. Under U Thein Sein’s five year rule, the military dictatorship had taken the first few steps towards democracy, forming almost a hybrid system of government.

One of the greatest disappointments, however, was the fact that political activist Aung San Suu Kyi was denied the chance to head the fledgling democracy. She had been barred from assuming the post of President as the law in Myanmar clearly states that Myanmar’s having a spouse or children of Foreign nationality, cannot become the head of the nation. Many people around the world have termed this as being unjust as the 70-year-old Suu Kyi had spent more than half of her life under house arrest while demanding the expulsion of the military government.

On the other hand, Suu Kyi herself is wasting no time and is instead busy sculpting a challenging role as a “Super Minister”. In charge of four portfolios: education, foreign affairs, energy and the president’s office, she has no plans to indulge in a Game Of Thrones.

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Controversial Film ‘No Más Bebés’ Highlights Latin Women’s Plight

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For many, the concepts of womanhood and motherhood are so intertwined, that it’s impossible to imagine one without the other. A woman’s most cherished dream is to lovingly hold her child in her hand.

womenBut in 1975, for 10 Latin-American women, this dream was destined to remain unfulfilled. And, all thanks to a piece of paper that they unwittingly signed before undergoing emergency C-sections. Around 40 years ago LA County doctors allegedly performed unauthorized Tubal Ligation on these immigrant Mexican women. Tubal Ligation is an irreversible sterilization technique. The doctors acted on the belief that these women could do without any further children. The matter only came to light when the women approached their doctors with doubts regarding reversible family planning methods. They then sued the state and the U.S. government violating their civil rights.

This lawsuit, Madrigal v. Quilligan, forms the basis of director Renee Tajima-Peña’s poignant film No Más Bebés (No More Babies), which aired on PBS. The film follows the mental anguish and legal battles that these women faced. It also takes a look at the Government funded family programs, the under-resourced maternity wards being manned by inexperienced doctors and how women from the lower income group were targeted to undergo sterilizations without their knowledge and consent.

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Works Of Hitler And Anne Frank Enter Public Domain

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World War II was one of the most destructive wars in human history. Today, not many people are alive from that era and it’s only from the monuments in the places most affected by the war, do we get a glimpse of those dark times.

Many, however, learn more about the war from the books written at that time. Adolf Hitler’s Mein Kampf (My Struggles) and Anne Frank’s The Diary of a Young Girl can be considered as the two sides of the same coin. These two iconic books are instrumental in providing a rather grim view of those times. While one outlines the rather perverted anti-Semitic idealism that led to a state-sponsored genocide, the other, gives a personal account of a young life where hopes are replaced by fear.

These books are now back in the news for a different reason. Both have entered The Public Domain, i.e., they have now joined the ranks of creative works that are available to the public without being subject to copyright or other legal restrictions. Both The Bavarian State, that held the rights for Mein Kampf, and the organization called Anne Frank Fonds, that held the copyright of Anne Frank’s Diary, had to relinquish their rights when these books entered The Public Domain on 1st January 2016, as the original authors have been dead for more than 70 years.