New Internationalist

Explores world issues and the relationships between the worl.'s rich and poor. Advocates for ethical governing in developing nations and communities. Presents in-depth coverage of a given topic, interviews with grassroots activists, book and music reviews

Articles from No. 411, May

Action
"Please use your liberty to promote ours"Join the dotsGive your active support to organizations that lobby on behalf of the issues that matter to Burma's people.Here are just some in reader countries:AUSTRALIAAustralia Burma Networkwww.australiaburmanetwork.orgAustralia...
'All History Is Propaganda'
'We don't need no education,' goes the song. In Burma, they take it literally. The country has reasonable rates of literacy but appalling academic standards. I met up with a group of young people from Shan State and they told me their experiences of...
An Elderly Burmese Man Suffering from Chronic Toothache
Anelderly Burmese man suffering from chronic toothache makes his way across the border to Thailand to consult a dentist. A bit surprised, the Thai dentist asks him: 'Don't you have dentists in your own country?''Oh sure we do/ comes the answer, 'but...
A Shrunken World
The red mud path slopes down almost vertically. Riding pillion, with my belongings strapped to my back, I grit my teeth as my young motorcyclist descends it, braking all the time. At the bottom, he revs up and lets fly for an almost vertical climb. It...
Bearing Witness to a Crime
'You had better examine your consciences,' Jon Castle told officials at the hastily convened British magistrates' court. He and fellow crew member Pete Bouquet, part of the'People's Navy', had been put on trial for entering the three-mile (five-kilometre)...
Beyond Nature
Maria Golia observes how 'other-worldly' powers can deflect some earthly problems.My friend and lawyer Bassim is a knowledgeable man, whose repertoire includes the salient points of Egypt's history and legislation, every joke, proverb, conspiracy theory...
Caucus of Terrorists
Burma's ruling generals have a catchall word for all those outside the country who want to usher in democracy - terrorists. Whizzing about northern Thailand, meeting exiled politicians and activists, I feel somewhat let down - they are, in the main,...
City of Whispers
I'm riding a ghost plane. Apart from tho roar of engines, there is an uneasy silence. No holidaymakers of the raucous variety. Just the occasional short, murmured exchange. An elderly Burmese man is fumbling with his immigration form. He turns it over...
Corporate Hogwash
There's no great difference between any country in the world when it comes to doing business with Burma. Look at the US - the Bush executive order is pretty good, but what is Chevron doing? The British Prime Minister and parliamentarians are very vocal,...
Country Profile: Uruguay
It was the meddling British who used their cartographic skills to delineate the country that would become Uruguay in the early igth century, as a buffer zone between the two regional giants, Argentina and Brazil. The result was a country stuck in the...
Dow Cowed
Protesters have had a dramatic victory at the site of Dow Chemical's proposed new chemical plant at Pune, 150 kilometres southeast of Mumbai in India. Since 16 January, reports SchNEWS, villagers and other supporters have occupied a road - having dug...
Errant Paradox
Reading the paper each day is a sort of history class. The papers teach through both what they say and what they don't.History is an errant paradox. It is the contradictions that keep its legs moving. Maybe this is why its silences say more than its...
Eye Candy
Who wants to watch pricey satellite television, with its rolling news and international distractions, when there's a garden of propaganda delights to be explored on TV Myanmar? The channel has a short morning burst until 9100am, then breaks off until...
Final Silence
Final Silence by Ronald Flores translated from Spanish by Gavin O'Toole (Aflame Books, ISBN 9780955233920)The recent history of Latin America has given its artists and writers the dubious privilege of being able to draw on actual events and first-hand...
Hands off Our Oil
Five years into the war and occupation of Iraq, and following five missed deadlines, the proposed Iraqi oil Law remains off the statute books, despite the best efforts of those whom it would benefit. The law would allow foreign oil companies to control...
Homeless in Delhi
A smoky sunset In the choking streets around Old Delhi Railway Station, where the traffic is permanently stalled. Low sunlight through a violet cloud bathes the scene in blood. Stringy cycle-rickshaw drivers strain every muscle with a mountainous load...
Jamaica Constabulary Force
A spate of murders of gays (known locally as 'batty men') and lesbians is just the most recent chapter in the sordid history of the Jamaica Constabulary Force (JCF). Though there have been some officers of integrity in the force, and many attempts at...
Journey to Justice
Campaigners from around the world will gather in the British city of Birmingham on 18 May for Journey to Justice - an event marking 10 years of the campaign to Drop the Debt. It will be a decade since the day in 1998 when 70,000 people formed a human...
Letters
The New Internationalist welcomes your letters. But please keep them short. They may be edited for purposes of space or clarity. Letters should be sent to lettersenewint.org or to your local NI office. Please remember to include a town and country for...
Mothers' Misery
A contraceptive ban imposed in Manila eight years ago has badly affected the city's poor. Some 70 per cent of Filipinos rely on public health facilities and many use family planning clinics to obtain free contraceptives. The ban was pushed through with...
Political Prisoners - the Basics
The lawPolitical prisoners are arrested without warrant and are sentenced in short mock trials without proper representation.The State Peace and Development Council has formulated numerous vague laws as 'security' legislation in order to imprison those...
Recreating the Big Bang Is 'Perfectly Safe', Honest!
A lawsuit in the US has raised safety concerns over the Large Hadron Collider (LHC) - the world's biggest particle collider - which is to be switched on later this year. The suit simply seeks a safety and environmental review and a delay of a few months...
Saving the Sacred Sea
Locals call it the Sacred Sea, Russians consider it a national treasure and the world has declared it a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Siberia's Lake Baikal is one of the world's oldest, largest and deepest lakes. Its age and isolation have created one...
Stale News Is Best
The morning sun enters my room quietly. Though I don't want to leave bed just yet, today is Monday, deadline day. So, I have to report at work as early as possible.I am under a lot of pressure - both at work and in Rangoon. Lately I find the city too...
The Price of Defiance
Bo Kyi is in debt; a debt of honour to which his working life is now devoted. Toward the end of our conversation, he tells me about it.'I salute those democracy activists who are in prison, those who still continue inside Burma. It is incredible, they...
Transition Handbook from Oil Dependency to Local Resilience
Transition Handbook From oil dependency to local resilience by Rob Hopkins (Green Books, ISBN 9781900322188)Since its inception just two years ago, the Transition movement has grown with a surprising rapidity. There are now nearly 40 official Transition...
Was Jesus Christ a Revolutionary?
Jesus certainly kept some shady political company. One of his inner circle was known as Simon the Zealot, the Zealots being an underground anti-imperialist movement dedicated to driving the Romans out of Palestine. The Roman presence in the province...
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