The Globe as you know it is changing.
Coming June 2019

  • More thought-provoking stories that inspire
  • Independent, free and member-supported
  • Vote for, pitch and commission stories
  • Member engagement with our journalists

To understand more about why you are so important to our member-supported initiative, we encourage you to read the following from our managing editor ~ Read more

The Globe as you know it is changing.

Since 2007, Southeast Asia Globe has been a space for some of the region’s best writers and photographers to take our readers behind the headlines into the stories that shape people’s lives. Every month, you could expect to pick up our latest print edition and find high-quality journalism, analysis and artwork waiting on every page. And since 2007, we’ve fought to uphold our promise of quality and independence to you, our readers.

But, like we said, the world is changing. Print publications just aren’t reaching the audiences they need to fulfil their promise of informing, educating and entertaining the public. Advertisers continue to invest in digital platforms while printing costs creep ever higher. Print may not be dead, but it’s fighting for its life. And we’re tired of waiting by a sickbed for its condition to improve. We want to be present at the birth of something new.

That’s why Southeast Asia Globe is relaunching as a member-driven platform featuring daily long-form features combining world-class journalism with enthralling art design and data-centered tech. Through our core pillars – Power, Money, Life and Earth – we are focusing in on the central issues that our readers have always engaged with most, with the same in-depth coverage of politics, business, social affairs and the environment that you’ve come to expect since 2007.

But leaving print behind us doesn’t just save our backs from lugging stacks of magazines across Southeast Asia. It opens up a global readership who don’t just want to read the news, but have a say in the stories that we tell and the way that we tell them. We’re not asking you to take out another magazine subscription – our stories are open to all. What we’re offering our members is a space where they can pitch and vote on the stories that they think deserve to be told. We want to inspire an engaged and active community of members who vote for, comment on and contribute to the stories that matter most to them. We want to work with our members to curate the way they engage with the news – not just as readers, but as an active extension of our editorial team.

That’s how we’re changing to bring you great stories. Here’s how we’re not.

We’re independent. Always have been, always will be. We’re not owned by any corporation or aligned with any state. We choose the stories that we tell, and the way that we tell them.

We’re creative. We’re not interested in churning out breaking news stories on the hour, every hour. We believe that the best stories are the ones that come alive on the page, digging deeper into the issues that shape Southeast Asia – and bringing you along for the ride. From our dedicated designers to our new software development team, our commitment is to constantly challenge ourselves to find new ways of reaching out to our readers.

We’re open. Challenging governments, NGOs and businesses to be transparent with the public means nothing if we keep our own readers in the dark. That’s why we will be completely open about why we tell the stories that we tell – and how we pay for them. Work with us to build something that endures where many media fail, and decide with us exactly where that money is going.

Above all, we’re optimistic. And yeah, we know what you’re thinking. Faced with impending climate collapse, the rise of right-wing authoritarian governments across the world, widening wealth and income inequality and deepening divisions rooted in race or gender or creed, it’s hard not to open the papers and feel the weight of the world pressing down. But we wouldn’t be doing this if we didn’t believe that when people work together, they can make their little corner of the world a more just, open and equal place.

And that’s why we can’t do this without you. We believe that across the globe is a community of people who care deeply about social justice, environmental action and press freedom – and who will join in to help make those ideals a reality. We’re not just holding our hand out – we need your voice to play a vital role in building Southeast Asia Globe into a leading space for progressive causes in the region. Tell us what stories the mainstream media is missing. Share with us the causes that matter most to you, and how we can champion those causes not just across Southeast Asia, but the world.

Our vision is clear. By 2025, we want to be recognised for building a great space for outstanding journalists from across the region to explore new ways of telling Southeast Asia’s most vital stories. Let’s bring together a community of engaged and loyal members who want to help reshape the media rather than just read it. And we want to reach a point where our readers, not advertisers, are the ones working to support our shared vision of an inclusive media.

We can’t do this without you. Let’s get together and build something that we all believe in.

If you’re interested in joining us, sign up to our newsletter, like us on Facebook, follow us on Twitter. And watch this space.

Myanmar’s militant christians and their war on drugs

By: Southeast Asia Globe editorial - Posted on: April 18, 2016 | Current Affairs

Christian vigilantes have taken Myanmar’s drug problems into their own hands

Pat Jasan was formed two years ago and is comprised of mostly ethnic Kachin recruits with ties to the Kachin Baptist Church, as well as to leaders in local Roman Catholic churches. It boasts more than 100,000 members and, until the past few months, spent most of its time raiding drug dens, seizing shipments of methamphetamine and harassing drug users – often flogging addicts until they repent.

pat jasan
A member of Pat Jasan, an anti-drug, Christian ‘vigilante’ group in Myanmar, poses in military-style fatigues for a photograph. Photo: Taylor Weidman/Getty Images

However, in recent months, the group has engaged in even more militant vigilante activities, such as raiding poppy farms, with its members dressed in military fatigues, brandishing batons.

In late February, a standoff ensued between the anti-drug vigilantes and the police of Kachin State’s Waingmaw township. Pat Jasan members were attempting to raid local poppy farms, but the police intervened, claiming it was for the activists’ security after farmers stated they would respond with violence.

A few days later, Myanmar’s lower house of parliament passed a resolution for government authorities to support Pat Jasan’s efforts, and the raid took place. Nearly three dozen people were injured as farmers and local militias responded to the anti-drug vigilantes with force.

Myanmar is the world’s second-largest producer of opium, which is also used to make heroin. Since 2006, opium production has tripled in the country, after decades of decline, according to the UN Office for Drugs and Crime. 

Many farmers in the region turn to opium production due to poverty and the significant money that can be made.

A recent article in GlobalPost described Pat Jasan’s efforts as one of Myanmar’s “largest civilian uprising[s] in nearly a decade”, although it added that the issue has often been ignored by the recently elected National League for Democracy and its leader Aung San Suu Kyi, as well as by the international media. “Many of the country’s biggest drug syndicates are, in fact, armed units controlled by the military. That makes Pat Jasan the largest civilian movement actively mobilising against Myanmar’s all-powerful armed forces,” it said.

Indeed, while Pat Jasan are often seen as mere anti-drug vigilantes, they are actually trying to “end the reign of army-backed crime syndicates, which run parts of Myanmar like little dictatorships”, GlobalPost stated.

Keep reading:
Vice city: Myanmar” – From flagrant prostitution to brazen wildlife hawking, Southeast Asia Globe explores Mong La, one of the region’s most lawless towns