Marcus Hardtke from 100Reporters on Vimeo.
“Sometimes, you have to use some guerrilla tactics,” said forest campaigner Marcus Hardtke.
Hardtke is the project coordinator in Cambodia for the Rainforest and Wildlife and Conservation Association, known by its German acronym, ARA. His group helps villagers in rural areas, who are often ignored or exploited by the government, to organize, demand their rights, and to resist illegal logging in forests that they depend on for food, clothing and shelter. Their tactics can be risky. They patrol forests for signs of illegal clearing or logging and occupy logging camps.
On April 26th 2012, Hardtke’s friend and ally, Chut Wutty, was shot and killed while escorting two journalists to report on a logging operation. A security officer was also killed in the incident. Wutty was the founder and director Cambodia-based Natural Resource Protection Group. Critics say the government investigation into the incident, which was closed without any charges filed, was a sham. The commission offered implausible explanations, including a proposal that Wutty had committed suicide out of remorse after shooting the guard. A rash of similar incidents led to the UN calling for Cambodia to stop using firearms against human rights activists.
In this 100Voices video, Hardtke recalls details of the incident from his perspective, and explains why he thinks people who live in timberlands must protect their own resources.
He spoke at Transparency International’s 15th International Anti-Corruption Conference in Brasilia last month. He was interviewed by 100Reporters’ Chad Bouchard.
Huguette Labelle, chair of the board of Transparency International. / Photos by Chad Bouchard
Switzerland, Singapore, Luxembourg, the United States and the United Kingdom are seen as the 20 least corrupt nations on earth, according to an annual ranking of impressions about the integrity of nations released in Washington today.
But those same nations also top a separate and less savory ranking–of countries whose corporate and bank secrecy laws make them havens for tax evasion and money laundering by criminals, corporations and kleptocrats alike.
The conflicting snapshots highlight the involvement of wealthy nations in laundering and sheltering the fruits of graft from less developed parts of the world, where corruption consigns millions to poverty. [Full Article]
Jiwo Damar Anarkie and Friends from 100Reporters on Vimeo.
What could a frog and a teddy bear possibly have to do with petty bribery? The puppets are characters in a larger play underway in Indonesia to train children from the youngest ages to recognize and reject corruption.
Jiwo Damar Anarkie is the founder and director of Future Anti-Corruption Leaders, a new Jakarta-based nonprofit that teaches children “joyfully” about fair play, honesty and bribery through songs, story telling and, yes, puppet shows. The group trains members and volunteers, and is active in 10 provinces throughout Indonesia.
Jiwo spoke at Transparency International’s 15th International Anti-Corruption Conference in Brasília last month. He was interviewed by 100Reporters’ Chad Bouchard.
U.S. President Barack Obama toasts with Cambodia’s Prime Minister Hun Sen at the East Asia Summit dinner in Phnom Penh, November 19, 2012. REUTERS / Jason Reed
Aid Dependence in Cambodia: How Foreign Assistance Undermines Democracy
By Sophal Ear
Cloth, 208 pages, B&W Photos: 1, , Graphs: 4, , Figures: 3,
$50.00 / £34.50
As United States President Barack Obama made history in Phnom Penh today, becoming the first sitting American president to visit Cambodia, his motorcade was escorted by Cambodian police–a force trained by the U.S.–whose violence has made the capital a place where public demonstrations are seldom if ever tolerated.
After two decades of U.S. aid, he will enter a city where the illegal evictions of about 20,000 people from prime real estate has nearly been completed by a close friend of Prime Minister Hun Sen — who held direct bi-lateral talks with the president. Obama shook hands and touched glasses with Hun Sen, despite a reportedly “tense” hallway discussion of human rights.
The State Department has promised that U.S. officials will use Obama’s attendance at a summit of East Asian leaders in Phnom Penh as the occasion to scold the Cambodian government for human rights violations.
But it remains to be seen whether American officials will confine their displeasure to unofficial press briefings, or if they will dare express their concerns within earshot of the Cambodian public. Presumably at U.S. urging, Phnom Penh may have delayed plans ahead of the meeting to evict almost 400 more families for an airport expansion. Eight residents were held by police for 12 hours for writing ‘SOS’ on their roofs and displaying Obama’s image to draw the president’s attention. [Full Article]