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Feb 20, 2012

NO FLIES ON US

By Andrew R.C. Marshall

“When you open the windows for fresh air, flies sometimes get in.” So declared one of Myanmar’s ruling generals after his long-isolated country started welcoming foreign tourists in the late 1990s. The “flies” were undesirables like us, the journalists, who exploited this new openness to enter Myanmar as tourists and buzz around the place.

I recalled the general’s words (which he stole from Chinese leader Deng Xiaoping) while researching a Special Report on Myanmar’s new opium war with photographer Damir Sagolj. We were invited by the Central Committee for Drug Abuse Control (CCDAC), Myanmar’s main anti-narcotics taskforce, to witness its opium-eradication efforts and hear an appeal for half a billion dollars to help wean impoverished farmers off poppy-growing.

Jan 27, 2012

SPECIAL REPORT: In Mekong, Chinese murders and bloody diplomacy

By Andrew R.C. Marshall

ON THE MEKONG RIVER (Reuters) – A thin line divides tourism, trade and terror in the Golden Triangle, where the lawless borders of Thailand, Myanmar and Laos meet.

In Myanmar, where the jungly banks of the Mekong River vanish into the mist, lies an anarchic realm of drug smugglers, militiamen and pirates on speedboats. “I’m scared to go any further,” says Kan, a 46-year-old boatman, cutting his engine as he drifts just inside Myanmar waters from Thailand. “It’s too dangerous.”

    • About Andrew

      "I am Southeast Asia Special Correspondent for Reuters and winner of the 2014 Pulitzer Prize in International Reporting. I have lived in and reported from Asia for 20 years. I am the author of The Trouser People, a political travelogue about Myanmar and football, and co-author of The Cult at the End of the World, about Japan’s Aum Supreme Truth Cult and high-tech terrorism."
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