The Garret Tree
Sunday, January 14, 2007
  Forced labour building roads in the jungles of Burma in 2007
Once again forced labor is being used to build roads through the jungles of Burma.

The CBC has obtained video showing that the government of Myanmar (Burma) is using forced labour to build roads through the jungle in some areas close to where the Burma ThailandRailway once ran.

The documentary by our Asia correspondent Patrick Brown was broadcast January 8, on the CBC National.

A couple of excepts from the script

It's being documented by a group of courageous young Karens who take video cameras in to the war zone and bring back the pictures which show the world what's happening there... Pictures of the strongest evidence of human rights abuses in what's been called the Forgotten War. In Burma itself, just being caught with a camera would mean prison or even death.
The Burma issues' video team took enormous risks to film this extraordinary evidence of villagers being forced to build a road for the Burmese army.
(translation) Grandma, how much are you paid for each load of stone?
(translation) I don't know about that.
(translation) Are you paid for working here?
(translation) No.
You can watch the video (which is about 23 minutes in total) by
going to and finding the documentary "A Better Tomorrow." (requires Real Video or compatible player)

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I write in a renovated garret in my house in a part of Toronto, Canada, called "The Pocket." The blog is named for a tree can be seen outside the window of my garret.

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Name: Robin Rowland
Location: Toronto, Canada

I'm a Toronto-based writer, photographer, web producer, television producer, journalist and teacher. I'm author of five books, the latest A River Kwai Story: The Sonkrai Tribunal. The Garret tree is my blog on the writing life including my progress on my next book (which will be announced here some time in the coming months) My second blog, the Wampo, Nieke and Sonkrai follows the slow progress of my freelanced model railway based on my research on the Burma Thailand Railway (which is why it isn't updated that often) The Creative Guide to Research, based on my book published in 2000 is basically an archive of news, information and hints for both the online and the shoe-leather" researcher. (Google has taken over everything but there are still good hints there)

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