The global news cycle is spinning faster than ever, keeping all of us busy at the Globe. We’re lucky to have readers who are also passionate storytellers and, thanks to your help, we’ve been able to publish unique viewpoints and stories of the pandemic. This week, we had a very touching personal narrative from our own editor, Alastair, who lost his father amidst the pandemic – may his memory be a blessing. We also covered such varied stories as the geopolitical currents behind the damming of the Mekong; the tabloid-storming behaviour of the Thai king in quarantine; and the online solidarity between Thailand and its partners in the “milk-tea alliance”.
We couldn’t keep our independent journalism alive without your support. Stay hopeful and stay informed with our week of coverage below.
‘Us’ vs ‘Them’: the politics dictating the rise and fall of the Mekong
Dams, economic interests and political power are just some of the factors contributing to the over-exploitation of the mighty Mekong. With several competing transnational bodies established to oversee its development, will any of them halt the river’s decline?
Online criticism of Thai king goes viral during pandemic
In Thailand, the ruling monarchy has long been protected by some of the harshest lèse-majesté laws in the world. But the behaviour of the controversial King Maha Vajiralongkorn during the pandemic has opened him up to a flurry of online backlash.
Tales of the pandemic: When a final goodbye is taken away
With the Covid-19 death toll reaching into the hundreds-of-thousands, the people behind the figures become easily obscured. Here, the Globe’s editor Alastair McCready talks about losing his father this month, unable to speak to or visit him in the south London isolation ward where he passed.
As donor priorities shift, Myanmar’s refugees are left wanting
As donor priorities shift against the backdrop of Myanmar’s democratic transition, funding for refugee camps along the Thai border has dropped in recent years. Today, the sustainability of projects easing the country’s decades-long refugee crisis are in major doubt.
‘Pandemic a chance for governments to prove themselves or stumble’
With Covid-19, errors have been made in the public health responses of many countries. Darshan Joshi of Malaysian think-tank REFSA argues that if past failures on climate change and inequality are any indication of what is to come, we might be in a lot of trouble.
‘The good news for malaria elimination in Southeast Asia’
Public health officials have made huge strides in the campaign to eliminate malaria deaths, but the fight isn’t over yet. Leo Braack, senior vector control specialist at Malaria Consortium Asia lays out the progress made and the challenges remaining in eliminating this deadly disease.
Twitter war with china results in ‘Milk tea alliance’
A war between Thai and Chinese Twitter users broke out this month, resulting Taiwanese and Hong Kong users declaring a ‘Milk Tea Alliance’ in solidarity with Thailand. The seemingly innocuous spat may highlight growing frustrations with China’s regional influence.
Tales of the pandemic: The quiet before Ramadan in Yogyakarta
Each year, Ramadan witnesses one of the world’s great migrations of people as worshippers return home for the Islamic holy month. In Yogyakarta, Indonesia an unease about what people may bring with them is overshadowing this year’s celebrations.