Nightly News | September 21, 2012
>>> and now, a whirl wind week for aung san kyi, in which she was awarded the congressional gold medal on her first visit to the u.s. since she was freed after years under house arrest . nbc's ann curry sat down for a rare interview with her today, she is in her in the studio today.
>> that is absolutely right, aung san kyi endured 15 years of house arrest , fighting for democracy in myanmar, separated from her husband who was dying, before she was finally released. we began by asking her about her meeting with president obama .
>> it is a privilege, and it is also -- i like your president.
>> reporter: did you ask him to lift economic sanctions s on burma?
>> i have already discussed this with members of your congress.
>> but you would like to see the economic sanctions lifted?
>> yes, i would like to see us stand on our own feet and push us towards democratic.
>> you have called it a beacon of hope, though flawed. you are a beacon of hope to so many. but what is the most important message that you have to all the people around the world who are struggling as you have for freedom and democracy?
>> it is the same struggle for everybody, everywhere. because unless we are free, we cannot really realize our own potential.
>> one of the things that people admire about you is that you did not give up.
>> it never occurred to me that i should give up.
>> but there were moments, i'm certain, when you felt all hope might be lost?
>> no, never. i was not always thinking of hope, i was always thinking of what to do next.
>> i feel a need to ask how you survived emotionally.
>> if any sacrifices were made, they were made by my family. i just took the path that i chose. and it is a choice i made, not a sacrifice.
>> because it was for something that mattered?
>> to me, yes.
>> do you know why this belief was so important to you, to give up so much?
>> my mother always brought me up to understand, that my father loved his country. and of course, he didn't live to see history come true. he died just before we re-gained independence. and i suppose always i wanted to realize his dream for him.
>> and i have?
>> not yet.
>> you will?
>> i hope so.
>> and on that moment, will you feel your father with you standing there?
>> i always feel him with me anyway.
>> do you rule out the possibility of ever running for president of your country?
>> no, if you're a politician you never rule out such a possibility.
>> she is such an impressive woman. fearless, quietly determined, as you can hear, very humble. her whirl wind visit to this country, her first in four decades continues for two weeks. and it is back to fighting for democracy, as she has done her whole life.
>> she is as elegant as she is historically important. ann curry , with her report, and thank you for your reporting tonight.