I was alerted to it by New Mandala, which in turn was made aware of it by a reader of theirs. That reader summed up the article nicely:
The article seems credible, the reporter pretty thorough, the LA Times fairly reputable. If the same content were on a rebellious blog site, it would be almost unbelievable, incomprehensible, but my opinion is that this reporter is working hard to report what is actually going on.
The article itself outdoes that description. There are references to attempts to glean the odd red chile pepper or onion out of mud stinking of corpses, and for comfortable computer users who dislike unnecessary drama, it can be appealing to assume that this is mostly emotional reportage. On the other hand, consider the level of devastation wrought by Nargis in Burma, compounded by Burma’s insane rulers and their refusal to allow people to help survivors directly, and the mounting public health crisis, and this seems thoroughly reasonable.
The article is also notable for reporting on the clandestine (and apparently rather effective) aid efforts organized by heroic monks. Here’s a relevant quote on that front, but please go read the original article here.: Continue reading