Mong Palatino

blogging about the philippine left and southeast asian politics since 2004

About

@mongster is a manila-based activist, former philippine legislator, and blogger/analyst of asia-pacific affairs.

Archive for the 'east asia' Category

“Wipe your tears, continue your journey.” This quote was made famous by Kem Ley himself; and after his death, it has become the rallying call of his friends and supporters. While many continue to grieve, a growing number of Cambodians are stepping up to embrace his legacy of promoting grassroots activism, transparency and good governance, […]

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Death in custody of a Nobel laureate, sentencing bloggers, and Pakistan’s UN review. Last July 2018 in the Asia-Pacific region saw the death of China’s most renowned political prisoner, harsh convictions against dissident bloggers in Vietnam, threats to encryption in Australia, concerns about PNG’s cybercrime act, the first ever review of Pakistan’s human rights record […]

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What Laos Taught the CIA

Wednesday, December 27th, 2017

Joshua Kurlantzick’s recent book A Great Place to Have a War: America in Laos and the Birth of a Military CIA is more than just a retelling of the war in Laos and the role it played in the Vietnam conflict. It narrates the history of how the CIA began its notorious paramilitary operations in […]

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Myanmar’s media and Internet muzzle

Sunday, October 15th, 2017

Published by New Mandala Section 66 (d) is a controversial clause of the 2013 Telecommunications Law that carries a three-year prison term for defamation made using a communications network. It’s undermining media freedom and is behind a spike in defamation cases, writes Mong Palatino. Various activist groups and media networks have petitioned the parliament of […]

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Several governments and political parties in Southeast Asia have raised the issue of foreign intervention this year. In Malaysia, the police are probing some non-governmental organizations (NGOs) for receiving funds from a foundation owned by American businessman George Soros allegedly in order to topple the ruling party which has been in power since the 1950s. […]

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Twenty-five years have passed since the signing of the Paris Peace Agreement, which ended the war in Cambodia and paved the way for the restoration of democratic institutions in the country. How has Cambodia fared so far? Various groups, including some of the 18 parties that signed the agreement, commemorated the anniversary last October to […]

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Forty years ago on October 6, more than 40 student protesters were killed inside the Tha Prajan campus of Thammasat University. The identity of the killers is unknown to this day but the attack was led by state forces and an anti-communist mob. The casualties could be higher because no official probe has been made […]

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Negotiating Peace in Southeast Asia

Friday, November 18th, 2016

Peace talks have been successfully initiated in Thailand, Myanmar, and the Philippines – three Southeast Asian countries where local wars and ethnic armed conflicts have been in existence for several decades. The peace initiatives in Thailand, Myanmar, and the Philippines are off to a good start. Will it all lead to the resolution of armed […]

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Myanmar’s Radical Buddhist Group Gets Rebuked

Wednesday, November 2nd, 2016

Myanmar’s nationalist Buddhist group known as The Committee for the Protection of Nationality and Religion (Ma Ba Tha) has suddenly found itself losing support from government officials and the online community. First, Yangon Region Chief Minister U Phyo Min Thein boldly declared in public that Ma Ba Tha is “unnecessary and redundant” since there is […]

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Thailand’s New Constitution: A Blow to Rights?

Saturday, September 24th, 2016

Thailand’s ruling junta got what it wanted on August 7: the public approval of a constitution that will reinforce military rule in the country. The same constitution also contains provisions that could further curtail the people’s right to freedom of expression. Some are questioning the result of the referendum because the opposition was prevented by […]

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