I thought this was a pretty good backgrounder on the role of Buddhist monks in Burmese culture, even if it still doesn't lend any insight into any theological/philosophical reasons for current political protest. It kind of just says "Some monks are protesting. They're important in society. Here's why they're important." (I'm lumping this backgrounder with its other associated backgrounders. There's one that gives a timeline of events in Burma, but basically just says "The price of gas went up, there were some minor disturbances, and then some monks protested.")
That's kind of like saying some priests were involved in a lot of social and political reform movements in South and Central America, without explaining liberation theology.
But still, a decent 101 article.