The Insurgency in Southern Thailand Is a Total Mystery
The insurgency in Southern Thailand remains an enigma to the Thai government, the international community and many analysts and observers. For one, the Malay Muslim rebels have rarely explained or revealed themselves. This makes their goals, ideologies and leaders befuddle the Royal Thai Army and the Royal Thai Police,... Read more
The Thai Army Thought I Was a Terrorist
The Thai government rarely opposes researchers studying the conflict in the country’s violent south. My friends Don Pathan, a freelance journalist, and Duncan McCargo, a professor at the University of Leeds, reported no problems traveling there despite the raging insurgency that has claimed thousands of casualties. Michael K. Jerryston,... Read more
I Went on a Ride-along With Thailand’s Toughest Cops
I was in southern Thailand on a trip to research the government’s low-boil war with Islamist insurgents — and I had a very hard time getting the Royal Thai Police to talk to me. Though the Royal Thai Army has earned the least notoriety and most prestige, the RTP has... Read more
Thailand’s Counter-Insurgents Are Not Winning Hearts and Minds
The Royal Thai Army and the Royal Thai Police have for decades fought rebels in one of Asia’s lesser-known sectarian conflicts. Malay Muslim separatists in southern Thailand, inspired by centuries-old sultanates in the Islamic historical region of Patani, renewed their insurgency against the Thai government in 2004. Since then, the... Read more
In Myanmar, Buddhist Extremists Whip Up Anti-Muslim Hate
The 969 Movement, a grassroots, leaderless group of monks promoting Buddhism and militant nationalism throughout Myanmar, may surprise the country’s recent tourists with its anti-Islamic rhetoric. Many longtime observers, however, consider the movement another example of how religious extremism remains a serious problem in Myanmar. It’s not uncommon for... Read more
I Got Smuggled Into a Rohingya Refugee Camp
The Myanmarese government hopes to prevent the international community from confronting the humanitarian crises of the Rohingya, Myanmar’s most-persecuted Muslim minority. How? By blocking most foreigners from entering concentration, internment and refugee camps in the center of Rakhine State and Rohingya-majority cities in the north. As the country becomes... Read more
Myanmar’s Most Persecuted Minority Isn’t Fighting Back
I checked the straps on my boots. The water on the flooded dirt road reached my ankles, so the boots would help little. Several Rohingya drove by on motorbikes and walked by with cattle, looking at me as though they doubted that I were real. Dozens of journalists had... Read more
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