8th August, 1988 is known as 8888 to Myanmar people. This was the day when pro-democracy protests erupted in Myanmar. The protests were initiated by the students demanding the restoration of a democratic government in Myanmar. Inspired by the students, government workers, monks and ordinary citizen also joined in the protests. The protests led to the fall of dictatorial regime of General Ne Win but the army took over the power immediately afterwards and ruthlessly ended the movement.
Eccentric Ghost remembers the day the protests started and how he joined in
The memories of 8888 days still fresh in my mind. I was a boy attending middle school at that time. When I heard my school is organizing to go for demonstration, I asked my mom for her permission. My mom told me I was still young and asked me for a good reason to go. I answered that if Burma became democratic country after this, I would be proud for I was part of this movement.
The blogger has more on the day's events on his blog. Eccentric Ghost pays tribute to the protesters killed by the army.
There were bloodsheds when military shot the people demonstrating peacefully especially in Yangon and Sagaing. We, the people of Burma will never forget those people who sacrificed throughout this resistance and we will never give up fighting for freedom.
Much younger Myanmar expatriate Fifty Viss recalls the day when as a young child, he got to know of the 8888 protests
I recall the first time I learned about the 1988 uprisings. It was 1996 and I was about seven, and my father’s friend from college (I don’t remember his name, but my mother always joked that he was a lanba, a tall and skinny man) visited my family to give us a homemade VHS tape of the protests and violence of 8.8.88. The people who documented these horrific events, on an ordinary black-and-white video camera must have been enormously brave. I remember the first few minutes of watching, many people protesting on a wide street. Then, my mother told me to close my eyes, fearing that the violence was too much. I obeyed, but I could hear gunshots, slaughtering by knife, screams, and rallying cries. To this day, I have not watched the entirety of the tape. Perhaps I am not ready to take in all of the tragedy that happened.
Do read Fifty Viss‘s post if you want to know about the role of the military in Myanmar's recent history.
It [The 8888 protests] also negated the theories that, Burmese people lack democratic values and more inclined to totalitarian regime and proving importance of 8888 revolution in Modern history of Burma.