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Posts Tagged ‘corruption’

Sounding Cambodia for June 6 2011

In sounding on June 6, 2011 at 11:45 am

The end of the semester got away from me folks, which means that today’s Sounding Cambodia will consist of a lot of links, videos, and topics, with minimal commentary. Lots of important stuff in there, though.  Go read!

  • Sand mountains during Khmer New Year (Video)
  • Cash pledges from politicians – exactly what is going on?
  • Violence against Cambodian Labor by the government
  • Interviews with Rich Garella of Who Killed Chea Vichea?
  • Nuon Chea and Cases 002 and 003 in the Extraordinary Chambers/Khmer Rouge Tribunal
  • Would you like some Borax with your Cambodian food?  Formalin? You’re welcome.
  • Tiny Toones NGO – “Hey Babe” video.
  • Cambodian Rice Exports to the Philippines
  • Judy Ledgerwood’s awesome Summer ethnography school in Cambodia
  • Damned Dams and their impacts on damned-near everything; an article in Critical Asian Studies by Ian Baird
  • Book Review of Constance Wilson’s edited volume on the Middle Mekong River Basin
  • Thai Politics – an election primer from Duncan McCargo
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Academic Freedom Note: County Sheriff interrupts Class

In faculty on March 3, 2010 at 1:59 pm

If this sort of incident wasn’t really far more average than we would like to believe, it would be even more amazing.  Even for the jaded amongst us…well, what can I say?

At around 9:20, a half hour before the class’s scheduled 9:50 end time, Sheriff Kevin C. Larkin, dressed in a trenchcoat, opened the door to Prof. Glass’s classroom. According to one student attending the class that night, Max Grindlinger, “[Larkin] said, ‘Michael, can I see you for a minute?” 

According to Buckley, Grindlinger and another student, Diane Walker, Sheriff Larkin and Prof. Glass had a roughly three-minute conversation outside of MS 205. No one overheard the conversation. The two then reentered the classroom, Prof. Glass introduced Sheriff Larkin and apologized for “making disparaging comments” about the Sheriff. 

“[He] gives an apology while Sheriff Larkin is standing no less than six inches from him,” said Grindlinger.

Both Buckley and Grindlinger report Sheriff Larkin as saying, “This isn’t over,” on his way out of the classroom. According to Buckley, Larkin’s aide, who was waiting outside the classroom, said as the classroom door was closing, “You’re a terrible teacher, you should get your facts from a book.”

I know what I can say: this is fantastic journalistic writing from a student reporter, for a community college paper. Somebody needs to option this kid’s first job now; Dmitry Gurvits should be headed straight for the shattered ruins of print journalism – maybe he can make it better with more stories like this one.

LAW AND DISORDER: County Sheriff interrupts class – News.

Somebody's Not Reading Google News – Cambodia and Corruption

In Uncategorized on August 22, 2008 at 3:45 am

I have google news subscribe me to anything that has the word Cambodia in the story. I usually get a few nice stories that way, and keep up, roughly, on what’s shaking in the land I love.

Sometimes, that leads to a few strange coincidences. Coincidences which make me wonder who’s drinking the koolaid.

For instance. In the News Observer, I read a news/opinion piece from Pulitzer Prize winning journalist Joel Brinkley. The title of the piece?

The World Leader in Corruption is – Cambodia

Sure, we all know that Cambodia ranks as the second most corrupt country in the world, according to Transparency International. Or that it is ‘number one’ in Asia. (this, according to the 2007 report in which Cambodia was included for the first time. link.) But what excellent journalists do is to put a human face on the picture. What human faces did Joel Brinkley choose?

Hun Chea, a nephew of Cambodia’s prime minster, was speeding along a busy downtown street a few days ago when he ran down a man on a motorbike….

Hun was tearing down the street at high speed when he hit the biker, witnesses reported, and his car ripped off an arm and a leg. The biker, Sam Sabo, was killed. Hun began to drive off, but running over the motorbike had shredded a tire. He had to pull over, so there he sat in his big black Cadillac Escalade SUV.

Now, listen to how the Phnom Penh Post newspaper described the events that followed.

“Numerous traffic police were seen avoiding the accident scene, but armed military police arrived. They removed the SUV’s license plates and comforted Hun Chea” while Sam Sabo lay bleeding to death in the street. A military policeman was overheard telling Hun: “‘Don’t worry. It wasn’t your mistake. It was the motorbike driver’s mistake.'” A few days later, Hun gave the dead man’s family $4,000 in hush money, the paper reported. Case closed.

The outrage builds from there, and Brinkley concludes, correctly, that Cambodia deserves better. Good for him.

So what confuses the hell out of me is this ‘news piece’ from VoA which claims, at the same time that Brinkley’s piece stares at me from my Google Newspage, that Cambodia is experiencing “increased transparency.” Yes, yes, the piece comes with a faded notice at the top indicating that it is not, in fact, news, but rather an “editorial reflecting the news of the US government,” but I’m unimpressed. The entire news service should come with that warning.

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