Award-winning journalist and former State Department speechwriter Rena Pederson brings to light fresh details about the charismatic Nobel Peace Prize winner Aung San Suu Kyi: the inspiration for Burma’s (now Myanmar) first steps towards democracy. Suu Kyi's party will be a major contender in the 2015 elections, a revolutionary breakthrough after years of military dictatorship. Using exclusive interviews with Suu Kyi since her release from fifteen years of house arrest, as well as recently disclosed diplomatic cables, Pederson uncovers new facets to Suu Kyi’s extraordinary story.The Burma Spring will also surprise readers by revealing the extraordinary steps taken by First Lady Laura Bush to help Suu Kyi, and also how former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton injected new momentum into Burma’s democratic rebirth. Pederson provides a never before seen view of the harrowing hardships the people of Burma have endured and the fiery political atmosphere in which Suu Kyi’s has fought a life-and-death struggle for liberty in this fascinating part of the world.
Journalist Pederson (The Lost Apostle) delivers a penetrating portrait of Aung San Suu Kyi, the 1991 Nobel Peace Prize winner and leader of the Burmese National League for Democracy party, in a thoughtful biography that reveals the "moody, temperamental" side of its charismatic and visionary subject. Pederson opens with a 2003 covert interview with "The Lady," whose prodemocracy campaign in Myanmar (formerly Burma) has earned her a place in history. A nation rich in natural resources, Myanmar now ranks among the world's poorest after years of military rule, and Pederson traveled to the new capital, Naypyidaw (a $4 billion monument to dictator Than Shwe), at great personal risk while conducting her research. Suu Kyi an Oxford graduate, daughter of a martyred general and ambassador, and leader since 1988 of the opposition party remained under house arrest on and off until 2010, with long separations from her family, and inspired First Lady Laura Bush to take an active role working with the U.N. to bring humanitarian aid to Myanmar. Pederson charts Myanmar's "winter thaw," which earned Suu Kyi a seat in Parliament, and while Suu Kyi's fearlessness and Buddhist faith have carried her far, observers continue to wonder what impact her work will have on a country that has stymied U.S. presidents since Reagan. Photos.