December 16, 2019

Aung San Suu Kyi: Lannister or Stark?

Myanmar’s Aung San Suu Kyi – the general’s daughter, presiding over a desperately fragile state has gone from being the Tatmadaw’s (military’s) nemesis to their apologist or, worse yet, enabler. As the proceedings at the International Court of Justice (ICJ) gear up and her nation again comes under global scrutiny, many have asked how the much-revered Lady could have become so reviled?
December 11, 2019

Life (and death) in plastic

When I wake up every morning, I step into my bathroom and survey the shelves. There are rows of multi-coloured plastic containers: toothpaste, hair conditioners, hand soap, creams and eye lotions. Since I’m always travelling, I also have stacks of those cheap, single-usage shampoo sachets.Nowadays, (and because of the endless amounts of plastic that I seem to be using) I feel as if I’m a perpetrator and the killer of all those animals. But what is the truth about plastic?
December 5, 2019

Javanese: Of language and unity

More people speak Javanese than Malay, Burmese or even Thai. Indeed 95 million people or fully 40% of Indonesia’s 265 million strong population are Javanese speakers. However, Javanese is not the national language of the Republic. That is Bahasa Indonesia, which is a variation of the Malay language. How did Javanese, the language of Indonesia’s largest ethnic group, fail to become the national language?
December 5, 2019

An Iban in Johor

Gawing - an Iban/Christian boy - was nineteen years old when he first arrived in Johor back in 1993. He certainly never expected - just over a quarter of a century later - to be living and working in Johor Baru. Now working for an oil and gas company (a job that he enjoys immensely) and married with three children, he considers himself a true-blue, "Johorean".