Burma Cyclone

Media: BBC reporter deported from Burma by carpediemdg
May 8, 2008, 3:28 pm
Filed under: Latest News, Media, Uncategorized | Tags: , ,

(via Anup Kaphle, Columbia Journalism School student)

Getting the boot from Burma

By Andrew Harding
BBC News

A fallen tree and damaged houses in Rangoon
About a million people are now thought to be homeless

I flew into Burma on Monday morning from Bangkok. The smart new airport in Rangoon had finally reopened two days after the cyclone.

Low clouds obscured the vast wetlands of the Irrawaddy Delta but, as we came in to land, I caught a glimpse out of the window.

My mind flicked back to December 2004, flying into Aceh in Indonesia immediately after the tsunami, staring down at miles of pulverised coastline.

At this stage on Monday, the size of Burma’s disaster was not yet clear.

Over the weekend, the military authorities – safe in their brand new capital city far from Rangoon – appeared to be playing things down.

A few hundred dead perhaps, the state newspapers still overwhelmingly preoccupied with plans to hold a national referendum the following weekend.

The headlines full of the usual semi-threatening calls for a big Yes vote.

But the cyclone’s impact was already looking ominous.

There should have been a bright green jigsaw of rice paddies and villages below. Instead I saw a grey-brown smudge of water and ragged trees.

Read full story here



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