Despite threats and warnings and despite the beginnings of a violent response, witnesses reported tens of thousands of chanting, cheering protesters flooding the streets. Monks were in the lead, "like religious storm troopers," as one foreign observer put it.
A foreign diplomat described "an amazing scene" Wednesday as a column of 8,000 to 10,000 people flooded past his embassy following a nucleus of about 800 monks. They were trailed by four truckloads of military men, watching but not taking action. The diplomat, in keeping with embassy policy, spoke on condition of anonymity.
Everyone knows what's coming. There is something childlike in the Asian mind which allows simplistic overkill solutions to be sought. The west also does the stormtrooper stuff but operates a little differently to the Japananese/Chinese.
This thing is going to get very bloody and though we can sign countless petitions to our local member, what can we really do to stop it?