What about the Veto?

I certainly agree with Blake’s premise that the unilateral efforts of any one nation, even China, are unlikely to completely turn the tide in Myanmar. However, I think he overlooks one key aspect of China’s foreign policy arsenal, its veto on the UN Security Council.

Unfortunately, for those who see multilateral economic sanctions and curbing of weapons sales as a logical move forward, China chose today to withdraw that option, stating that it is “resolutely opposed” to Security Council sanctions. This announcement no doubt came as a relief to Than Shwe, who has been concerned enough about sanctions to state that he would meet with Aung San Suu Kyi if she stopped calling for them.