The Burmese junta has signed the ASEAN (Association of Southeast Asian Nations) charter but the body expressed its “deep disappointment” with the junta nonetheless. ASEAN has been spectacularly ineffective in accomplishing anything vis a vis the junta. Burma’s profusion of oil, lumber, and gemsmake confronting the junta costly, especially for nations that don’t have the luxury the U.S. has — borrowing more money from China to cover any shortfalls. Nargis is said to have caused $4 billion in damage, and will cost $1 billion will be needed over the next three years to aid survivors. At least 84,537 were killed by Nargis and its aftermath, and some 53,836 remain missing and presumed dead.

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