Travels in Thailand - Helping the Karen peoples of Burma

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Postby AgentK » Wed Feb 28, 2007 7:08 am

Thats IT!!! I don't care what they say Canadian Christians are just as bad as their North American counterparts. I don't care if they knock on my door with a list of why they're better (lower violent crimes etc.) i REALLY don't give a crap.
OK a bit of an explaination may be in order.....
Just ben to a refugee camp an hour down the road. Currently there are 40,000 in the camp and they are mostly surviving on UNICEF and UNHCR rations of rice, beans and water except for what they can trade themselves. In the meantime in the Christian school the Bible Thumpers are happily eating battered chicken legs, fresh fruit and vegetables. Upon talking to Lynn they made the immediate mistake of saying 'hey my ..... was Irish, give us a REAL Irish accent, you know something more Irish than now' and they were'nt joking. Trust me, she showed the greatest restraint i've ever sen not to jump over the table and start on the World Record for serial killings. Follow it up with the fact that they also started slagging off the Muslim part of the camp for having a market. Then their idea of 'helping out the Karens' was to sit around composing 'Worship Songs!!!'. Christian Rock Lovers the lot of them!

In the mean time we took some time out to go to where the landmine survivors were living and you have to se some of the things they make there. The Burmese plant landmines and then forget where they are so to get round this little problem they grab the nearest non-army Burman and tell them to walk 10 paces in front. You can imagine the results! All of them have lost their eyes/sight and most of them are amputees but considering that when they step on one they are left there and the next one told to take their place, survivors are not common. Otherwise they just happen to be out walking and.... you can guess the rest. The point being that these have started to rebuild their lives and those that are able are making keyrings, toilet roll holder holders (read it again it makes sense, honest) and animals using fishing wire and coloured beads. The real point is that by knowing which bags the beads are in they can add details including eyes etc to the animals. I know this sounds unbeleivable but its true and as soon as we get back we'll upload some vids to you tube and post the links.

Please show your support on the 28th by protesting outside the Thai embassy in your country and let them know that supporting GENOCIDE isn't the party peice that it used to be (ohh about 1000 years ago!).


Postby AgentK » Wed Feb 28, 2007 7:10 am

Ok one more link before they throw me out (it's 10pm already here!) ... jects.html

It dosent matter what you do, doing something is the important part!


Postby AgentK » Wed Feb 28, 2007 7:11 am

Ok just had my first bit of 'friendly advice' by one of the local volunteer workers here who has just said that this sort of thing may embarrass the local police and we may end up getting arrested! Part of me is saying 'yeah well that's what we are here for, to get the attention and change the focus' another part is saying 'when was the last time you were in a THAI prison cell?'. The FEAR is starting to set in and the Adrenaline has started pumping.......

On top of this local people are starting to ask the 'where are you staying?' 'when are you leaving?' kind of questions. Paranoia is definitely starting to set in...


Postby AgentK » Wed Feb 28, 2007 7:12 am

on another note i think i may be starting to understand the stresses and ups and downs that come with trying to organise and inform. Today was spent handing out our home-made leaflets to anyone that isn't a native and getting people to turn up on Wednesday. Our first visit didn't go as planned as we were told no by a couple of Americans who own a caff out here. We were told that he probably dosen't want the trouble so the hassle to good ratio wasn't worth it for them.

Then the rays of light started to appear on the horizon. Local owners of cafe's and guest houses were delighted to hear what was happening and put up the posters advertising the pre-demo muster. Suddenly the tension started to fade and the feeling of accomplishment was rearing it's head.

The best part of all this is that the internet caff i've been writing from this last week is known in town as a neutral zone for anyone who wants to send out reports. The owner told us that he is from Burma, is a Karen and that his cafe is used by reporters to send out their, well, reports to the rest of the world. (sorry it's 10pm here and closing time, plus getting 5 hours broken sleep is doing nothing for my attention span!). The best part is that he gets a copy of everything here and so far has copied a 10min documentary that explains the Salween problem, the funeral of General Bo Mya who was the inspirational Karen leader and fighting the Burmese since my grandfathers time here and the wedding of Burmese General Ne Win's daughter. The last one has to be seen because while the bitch is draped in about 10 kg of diamonds with a 50 foot silk dress,it shows the people of the country starving from rising food prices and the general unrest that is being, literally, beaten down by the SPDC.

Anyone who wants copies of these please PM me with your address and i'll try and get them to you when we get back.

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